Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tyrant in a teapot

I didn't follow the gubernatorial race in Maine that closely at the time, so I don't know what platform current Gov. LePage ran on, but I'm pretty sure he didn't run on the promise of becoming the state's interior decorator. Talk about petty tyranny.
AUGUSTA — Gov. Paul LePage has ordered the removal of a 36-foot mural depicting Maine's labor history from the lobby of the Department of Labor.

Acting labor chief Laura Boyett emailed staff Tuesday about the mural's pending removal, as well as another administration directive to rename several department conference rooms that carry the names of pro-labor icons such as Cesar Chavez.
Another room is named after Frances Perkins, a Maine native, who was the U.S. labor secretary under FDR. "The governor claims the 'one-sided decor' is not in keeping with the department's pro-business goals and cites complaints made some unnamed businesspeople proving this artwork is "hostile to business." Not clear on what that means. Are there businesses that wouldn't locate in Maine because of a piece of art in a government building that most people would never see? I'm willing to bet most people walk by without even looking at it.
The mural was erected in 2008 following a jury selection by the Maine Arts Commission and a $60,000 federal grant. Judy Taylor, the artist from Seal Cove, said Tuesday that her piece was never meant to be political, simply a depiction of Maine's labor history.

The 11-panel piece depicts several moments, including the 1937 shoe mill strike in Auburn and Lewiston, "Rosie the Riveter" at Bath Iron Works, and the paper mill workers' strike of 1986 in Jay.
Of course, such ridiculous petty tyranny isn't that surprising, considering LePage was the Tea Party candidate who already has a long history of bizarre public tantrums in his short tenure.

Tea Party governance in action. No policy decision is too stupid as long as it pisses off liberals. Which also sums up the new Republican Destructionism overall.

[Big thanks to Michael JW Stickings of The Reaction for linking in from Mike's Blog Round Up.]

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Blogger Bartleby said...

What kills me is that this is in the DEPARTMENT OF LABOR building. It is SUPPOSED to be "pro-labor". Jesus, what's next? Objection to a "pro-clean water" mural in the Department of Water????

11:49:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

That thought crossed my mind too Bartleby.

2:22:00 PM  
Blogger Batocchio said...

What Bartleby said. Basically, they denounce anything to the left of neo-feudalism as socialism.

Funnily enough, I saw Bill Clinton give a speech on Labor Day during his presidency at the Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine. Clinton came to praise labor (and management, too) for settling a dispute and having productive talks that would help BIW's future. The shipbuilders there are justifiably proud of their craftsmanship, and their extraordinary output during WWII. But to LaPage, certain people and their history doesn't matter... It reminds me of Utah Republican Senator Mike Lee, who argued that child labor laws were unconstitutional.

5:20:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Batocchio! Good to see you. The GOPers have become the party of pure hate of the other.

9:04:00 AM  

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