Ah, the Vaunted "Union Thugs"

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Dec. 11 2012 7:05 PM

Ah, the Vaunted "Union Thugs"

Back in February 2011, when the Wisconsin union protests had gone on for a while, conservatives responded with video journalism and counter-protests. One goal: Document the thuggery on display. In close quarters, with cameras in their faces, sure enough you could find some people in union garb being complete asses.

And here we are again.

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The man getting shoved around in the video is Stephen Crowder, a comedian and conservative videographer. The tent he's trying to protect is Americans for Prosperity's. The current rumor -- coming from people who didn't think ahead to recording their own video -- is that the AFP tent was somehow weakened in a "false flag" operation, to make the unions look bad. Whatever. Optics matter, labor's known that for years, and they went and got their story stepped on when a guy laid into a conservative videographer.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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