Democratic Party political strategist David Ormsby.
David Ormsby is a hired gun. He is sometimes called a political strategist.
He has done public relations and press work for Richard Daley, Michael Madigan and other Democrats.
He has sent me nice notes over the years.
But not today.
Responding to my Black Tuesday post this morning, Ormsby commented on Facebook:
Fred, lawmakers are not eager to cut pension benefits of retirees. In fact, they have avoided cutting a single dime of benefits for current employees while they have cut, bled, dismantled every other part of state government over the last four years and raised the income tax. Yes, the Speaker will nudge some reluctant yes votes, but many Democrats will vote for it because they have reached their limit of cutting money for schools, mental health, child abuse protection, etc. And many will vote no because of IEA and IFT campaign cash. There are few pure souls whose strings go unpulled. The issue isn’t black and white. It’s more grey and green.
I commented back:
This is a feeble defense not worthy of you. The House HAS voted to cut pensions just this year, only to be stopped by the Senate. Nobody is looking for pure souls. We are looking for Democrats who believe in the rule of law. Perhaps that is fruitless. As long as they choose to function under the paradigm of which group of poor, working and middle class citizens should we screw while leaving the rich and the corporations protected from appropriate taxation – as long as they vote to leave Illinois among the lowest spending, lowest taxing states in the US, there is nowhere else to go but pension destruction. Defend it anyway you like, but there are times when right is right and wrong is wrong. This is the time.
Back came Ormsby:
Setting aside the phony piousness about the rule of law, it’s about preserving union COLAs in retiree paychecks. That’s what unions do. I get it. But gussying up the union fight as something more noble than what it is – a grubby little fight over money for its members – by whacking opposing lawmakers who don’t take $10,000 IEA, IFT, AFSCME checks as “craven sycophants” of Madigan is unworthy of you, Fred.
My piousness is entirely sincere.
But let us deconstruct Ormsby’s response.
It’s not about “preserving COLAs in retiree paychecks.” Retirees don’t get paychecks because, well, we’re retired. This is not a matter of picking nits. COLAs are a contractual and constitutional guaranteed benefit that is part of our pension. It’s not a grubby little fight over money. It is a fight over an attempt to violate a provision of the Illinois Constitution.
By the way. Fights over the refusal to pay someone else’s compensation may be grubby to David. However he might proclaim it a matter of principal if a Democratic Party client refused to pay his billable hours.
It’s only grubby when it is someone else’s money.
And, for the record, my main whacks have been directed at those who do take our checks and then stab us in the backs. Not at those who don’t.
As I said to Ormsby:
The Democrats don’t waste their money on you. I was wrong. You are worthy.