September 05, 2002

Keefer and Italie


HERE'S THE STORY of how one of SpinSanity's founders was encouraged to leave his union job for criticizing an article in The Nation by Robert Borosage. Excerpt:

Would Keefer feel free to criticize Wellstone's political rhetoric? Yes, Keefer answered. Well, that's a problem, Anderson replied, because that would be a fireable offense. "By that logic," Keefer complained, "I can't criticize most or all of the political left." According to Keefer, Anderson answered, "Yes, that's true."

I'm sure that Michael Moore will be all over this example of post-9/11 censorship in America.

The story, called "Can Your Boss Fire You for Your Political Beliefs? Part 2" talks about Bryan Keefer, one of the people behind Spinsanity and how he got into trouble with his employer for politicial reasons.

Keefer worked for Service Employees International Union (SEIU) when he wrote a critical piece about Robert Borosage for Spinsanity concerning an article Borosage had written in the Nation. The twist: Borosage is co-director of the Campaign for America's Future and SEIU's president Andrew Stern was a founding member of the Campaign for America's Future. All of which led to Keefer being cautioned then deciding to leave SEIU.

Quite a sordid little affair; Instapundit is right to call attention to it. What surprises I.P. Watcher though is that he fails to call attention to a far more serious case, explicitely linked to in the Slate article: that of Michael Italie, a sewing-machine operator fired by Goodwill Industries when he was running for Miami mayor on behalf of the Socialist Workers Party.

It's hypocritical of Glenn to expect Michael Moore to be outraged about Keefer's situation when he himself stays silent about the far greater outrage visited on Italie.