Tuesday, May 05, 2009

MCGEO Takes On the Post (Updated)

The Municipal and County Government Employees Organization (MCGEO) has launched a vigorous counter-attack against labor’s nemesis, the Washington Post. Its weapon of choice: Maryland Politics Watch.

Back in January, a Post editorial entitled, “And the Oscar Goes to...,” slammed MCGEO President Gino Renne for opposing the disability bill sponsored by Council Members Phil Andrews and Duchy Trachtenberg. In hindsight, we now believe that that editorial was written by union-bashing Post intern Steven Stein, who has no knowledge of Montgomery County politics but brags about “writing things that anger people.” After we revealed Stein’s presence beyond the Post’s curtain, MCGEO returned fire.

Sunday’s Montgomery County Democratic Party ball saw an attendance of over 500 party loyalists including Governor Martin O’Malley, Attorney General Doug Gansler, Comptroller Peter Franchot, several members of Congress and nearly every politician in the county. Greeting the attendees were several MCGEO representatives handing out the flyer below:

Attached were our posts on the Boy King and the newspaper’s most recent anti-union campaign. The vast majority of Montgomery’s party activists, officials and politicians received a copy.

The Washington Post has been an anti-union business for decades. No one expects the Post to treat labor fairly. But when the Post employs an intern who is new to our area and has no grasp of our community to write its propaganda, the newspaper destroys its own credibility.

If the Post wants us to take them seriously, they must take us seriously. That means turning over the editorial duties to long-time Maryland residents who know our county and state. As for the interns... is it too much to ask that they start at the bottom of the organization and not the top?

Update: Washington Post reporter Ann Marimow noted the distribution of this flyer but failed to mention one of its central contentions: that the Post’s editorial writer is an intern. Why is the Post afraid to discuss that fact? Her article also does not credit Maryland Politics Watch for the flyer’s source material. Finally, her sole quote comes from Council Member Trachtenberg, one of the flyer’s targets. She never asked MCGEO for its point of view.