RoboCop was a sci-fi shoot-em-up from the late 1980s. The sequel explored the damaging effects of the drug trade at length, but for the sake of comparison, the first film will suffice. The setting of the movie takes place in a future dystopia of Detroit, where gangs run rampant in a Detroit burned out and turned out. The background for the movie focused on a Detroit police officer, killed in the line of duty, who comes back to life, sort of, as a cyborg. Designed by a major computer company, where one of the leaders has entered into corrupt collusion with dirty cops and criminals, RoboCop takes on the scene to bring law and order back to a scandal-plagued city.
The dystopia of the movie resembles all too closely the current economic and cultural malaise of Detroit, Michigan. Of course, a computerized police force does not patrol Motor City, although mechanized security may be the only way they city can maintain law and order without breaking the bank with lavish pensions and benefits. Newly-elected Mayor Duggan should consider the idea. RoboCop would never enter into collective bargaining, and he would follow orders without demanding pay raises, overgenerous benefits, or threatening work-actions.
However, a different RoboCop has made a comeback, but instead of taking on Detroit, this new RoboCop has moved to Lansing, Michigan. Instead of metal and machine, he has mettle and a mission. His name is Rick Snyder, a successful businessman, computer entrepreneur, and now model leader.
Unlike his predecessors, Snyder is standing up to the special interests in his state. Despite the storied origins of the labor movement in the Wolverine State, a new leader of the pack is stepping up and rallying Michiganders: pushing tax cuts and business credits, giving credit to businesses as the source of wealth, well-being, and welfare for all residents. The top RoboCop taking on population decline and economic malaise, Snyder instituted an innovative policy, emergency managers, who would supervise bankrupting cities and rearrange debts and spending. Since elected leaders, city councilmembers, mayors, school board members never make the hard decision, lest they lose their jobs. The most famous emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, has taken on Detroit, steering the bankrupted city which has kicked the can of unsustainable debt into dust. Public sector unions, like rampaging gangs stealing from residents through collective bargaining, have met their match, and despite the creditor status of untold thousands, the union leadership has shot itself.
Despite the slight setbacks of 2012, Republican Robocop Synder’s party controls all statewide offices and both houses of the state legislature. Taking cues from the brave examples of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (comprehensive reforms to collective bargaining rights for public employees) and Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels (tax cuts, privatized roads, and budget surpluses despite the Great Recession), Snyder stopped standing to the side and moved for bolder reforms for his state. “Workplace fairness and equity” became the watch-word mantra, yet Snyder was slyly dressing up in progressive language a comprehensive legislative change for his state: a right to work law. Right to work in Michigan? Michigan has one of the largest labor presences in the United States, the home of the unionized auto industry.
Making his case to the Michigan populace, and by extension the national polity, Snyder asserted that instead of forcing workers to join a union and pay dues to keep their jobs, every union should earn the respect and financing of every member. Opportunities for work should not mean forcing workers to associate against their will (and in violation of the First Amendment), let alone lose funding into a political compact which supports candidates and causes contrary to the individual views and values of the employee (a further violation of a worker’s rights).
The union bullies which had swarmed the state capital in Wisconsin harnessed their efforts all the more in Lansing. Union thugs attacked Conservative reporters, and national media affiliates recorded as violent labor rebels tore down tents which protected and promote the supporters of Synder’s right work legislation. Labor unions were facing lower numbers and lesser influence, yet their dystopian behavior in the name of protest cemented the inherent immorality of force and fiat which defines the modern labor movement.
Taking advantage of the final weeks of the 2012 legislative session, Republican RoboCop Snyder and his fellow Republicans passed RTW, and businesses began moving to Michigan once again. A state which suffered population decline for decades, the Great Lakes state is now shoring up opportunities for the first time in a long time. In cooperation with his fellow enforcers of financial prudence, Synder has taken laser-like aim on cutting medical costs, reforming statewide financing, bringing down the costs of doing business, and demonstrating that pragmatic focus on proving one’s mettle and accomplishing the mission of restoring law and order, prosperity in perpetuity, can be done once again in the Midwest, in the face of globalization and the radicalization of the modern labor movement.
Republican RoboCop Snyder is the model for every American Governor: serve, protect, provide, enforce, and subdue every obstacle to economic growth and individual liberty.