Bullwhips and Ohio’s Issue 2: “Those forefathers from the ’70’s?'” LOL

Using a bullwhip to demonstrate the benefits of Issue 2, in Ohio makes perfect sense to me. To many progressive minded people a bullwhip represents abuse, slavery, or S&M. But to me, a bullwhip is one of the rarest items of efficiency ever created. It’s a simple weapon that by calculus standards is quite complex. The function of a bullwhip is such that a focused effort applied at the handle of say 10 to 15 mph of thrust becomes over 750 mph of force within 6 feet of the application. For the crack you hear coming from a whip it is nothing less than the sound barrier being broken. Thus, the crack of a whip is a “sonic boom.” That “boom” was created with a small amount of force of which the tapered design of the whip magnifies the applied force into devastating effectiveness. To become so good with a whip that you can capture that energy and project it into a focused point in space is a grand achievement, so to put out a candle with a bullwhip is extremely rare. I only know of a handful of people in the entire world who can do it.

So when I want to demonstrate precision, power, effectiveness, management of resources, I often use the whip. I’ve used my bullwhips to explain to businesses how to function more efficiently, so it only makes sense to me to use a bullwhip to explain how Issue 2 can be effective in controlling the costs of communities all over Ohio. And I do it by showing that Issue 2 will allow communities to “target” their costs specifically, just as I do by targeting the flame of a candle, putting that flame out without disrupting the content of the candle. In this case it is the wax that makes up the candle and it is the flame that consumes it. If I want to save the candle from consumption by the flame, I must blow out the candle. Putting the candle out with at whip demonstrates how incredible force can be applied “precisely” without harming the rest of the candle. So the political metaphor is appropriate. See for yourself.

Who are the flames in society, the “public employees” who consume the “system?” What flames would I target with Issue 2? Well, what comes to my mind immediately is a situation we had at Lakota where a teacher Ryan Farhenkemp just plead guilty to taking inappropriate pictures of a young student while on an out-of-town field trip. That teacher had a serious case of pedophilia, where he desired sex with children, boys specifically, and should have never been allowed to teach. Because the teachers union is so radical, they prevented a proper investigation into this behavior, and did not allow any management to even investigate the matter, until it’s too late. Read more about this situation here:


Just one school district over in Mason another teacher was having sex with the football team, while her boss, the assistant principal was sending pictures of his penis to the teacher’s phone. Many people, including the Superintendent knew that things were not all well and good among his staff, but the teachers union has made investigations into this kind of business nearly impossible, so the bad teachers out there, “and there are many” are allowed to continue on with bad behavior because they are “protected” by a union. Issue 2 will allow performance based evaluations which will help root out this kind of trouble by “allowing” the discussion to initially take place, where now it doesn’t happen at all, because legally, it can’t. Read more about the Mason situation here:


And to understand how out-of-control the union contracts are, listen to Scott Sloan of 700 WLW read the Lakota Teachers Contract, the more complex something is, the more money it costs. The Lakota contract is not unique, but is pretty standard all over Ohio.

In addition to the lucrative teaching contracts the practice of double-dipping among retired teachers, firefighters, police officers, and school superintendents is so rampant that the projected cost of this abuse is almost unfathomable. It’s a real, significant problem which actually burns our community candle at both ends. In fact I wrote an entire article on just that problem here. Listen to the broadcast there done by an I-Team investigation of which I played a part. The numbers will stun you:


Those are examples of the kinds of “targets” that we as taxpayers must remove from our public employee system to control the out-of-control tax increases that are coming at us. Only in a community do we know what our problems are, and our school boards, city councils, and trustees are there to represent our interests. But often if you go to a community meeting, you will find that even if you speak, those elected representatives won’t listen to you, because the deals are already solidified in the chaos of Columbus. It is the union lobby power that has twisted the arms of legislators and passed legislation like the “double-dipping” provision while the tax payers were busy “working” those lobbyists and politicians, all paid for by us, were having lunch together in Columbus and writing laws to enrich themselves in the chaos they initiated.

I have written a lot about S.B.5, ISSUE 2 specifically. To read what that law does for you, read this article on it:


But the video below will give you a basic understanding:

Those who are in favor of Issue 2 could provide fact after fact, after fact on why it’s a great law. Basically we have a system that is currently in chaos, and there are a lot of people working in the public sector who fully intend to enrich themselves in the midst of that chaos. What you will find is that those groups who wish to take advantage of that chaos against the tax payer will attempt to divert the attention away from the details of an argument to an emotional one. In recent radio broadcasts we have begun to call this the Wookie Defense. Click here to read all about it:


You can see supporters of Issue 2 pick apart the recent “Firefighter” ad put out by We Are Ohio here, which will demonstrate unequivocally just how the system is flawed. If these guys won’t tell the truth about things right out in the open, what will they lie about behind closed doors? The answer to that is why things in government cost so much money, and why Issue 2 is so important. The savings doesn’t come from a literal figure on paper. It comes from decentralization in Columbus so people like me can help manage the costs in our communities, where they should be negotiated.

Now, this next video which was put out by a bunch of Firefighters working with a local school is using the same tactics that most public employees use to pass new levies, shows the kind of game they want to play. Now, when I saw this video I laughed hard for a long time. In fact my stomach still hurts almost 24 hours later from laughing at it. It’s not that the people in the video did a bad job. Actually, I think it’s a good effort at a dance routine. What I laughed so hard at is the level of manipulation they are employing in plain sight. They are basically expecting the voter to vote against Issue 2 because they can dance, and that is hilarious.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My stomach hurts again………………………………………………hold on…………Ok. How are the communities going to be weakened if we give the communities more power to handle their costs? Instead of the fire chief talking to his union people and then the union lobby going to Columbus to create a new law that then comes back to our community as an unfunded mandate, how about that fire chief talk to the people in the community about their staffing levels, their pay, and their equipment. That seems like it would create a stronger relationship, not a weaker one. If taxes needed to be increased, then the community could decide, but as it is now, the tax increases are “dictated” by the state through chaotic legislation, which is just how the union likes it. You see these emotional types won’t deal with facts they’ll instead rely on emotion to convince you to throw money at them.

However, in this next video the firefighters attempt to “look” like they are dealing with facts by letting you listen in on one of their picnics. I laughed hard at this one too but for an entirely different reason. In fact, this has been a running joke among my wife and me now for an entire day. We will probably make fun of this one for years to come.

Oh my goodness! “Our forefathers and firefighters tried to do back in the 70’s?” Thanks for that, Joe. In case you missed it that remark is at the 7:45 mark. Dude, the history of Ohio goes back a lot further than the 70’s! Also, hey, Joe you must not have met the mayor of Toledo. He’s for Issue 2. You should get out more, you’d meet more people than a bunch of bobble heads waiting for you to tell them what to think.



Here’s what’s going on here. The unions are using firefighters because they along with police are supposed to represent authority, and especially in light of the tenth anniversary of 9/11 these union leaders will show that they will absolutely stop at nothing to manipulate the tax payer with emotion and fear. The public is not supposed to question these people, because they have authority over us. Now this video disgusts me, because they are using some “slick” production values to attempt to completely manipulate the public. By allowing the viewer to sit down with those in authority as though it was a privilege, they hope to lure the viewer into a feeling of “entitled” information. It’s simply a variation on Saul Alisnsky’s Delphi Technique. But here’s the trouble, none of the people speaking in this video are speaking about any facts. They are simply speaking about what they fear, which is no more justified than people telling Christopher Columbus that if he sailed west across the Atlantic Ocean, that he’d fall off the side of the Earth. Its fear based on absolutely no foundation.

The next question that arises from this is, even these “honest” firefighters are not willing to address the facts, and instead peck around the parameters of truth, relying on manipulation instead of out-right presentation, then what are they hiding? Well, I published the wage rates of the police and firefighters from my community in the below article. It’s pretty standard stuff all over Ohio. As you will see, they are making very good livings, and as I’ve said before, if the public thinks that level of income is acceptable then fine. But my inclination is that these public workers are very aware that they are making approximately 30% more than the people who are paying their salaries, and they’d rather keep that bit of information out of the discussion, out of fear that the public might turn on them and actually question their actual value. See my article on what these guys make in my community: (the spreadsheet with all the costs is toward the bottom)


I have been in management for a while now so I understand this issue from many angles. I’ve worked at all levels of a company, and I have dealt with unions. I’ve been in actual fights in parking lots with shop stewards so I know the mentality of these people. Taken individually, most people are good citizens who just want to do the right thing. I once worked with a guy who was a major union supporter yet had a fascination with airplanes and considered himself very patriotic. I thought of him when I heard Joe speak in the above video. He used to say to me, “You are building those units too fast. You have a rate of 120%. You are making us look bad.”

I’d say to him, “You make yourself look bad by holding back. We have a contract deadline and you are jeopardizing it by not filling the production requirements. You could build at least three times faster than you are, but you and your friends won’t do it. So I’m picking up the slack so we don’t miss our deadline.”

“Kid, this whole union thing doesn’t work if we don’t stick together. It takes all of us, in solidarity.”

I’d smile at him, because he knew what my reaction would be. We got along in a friendly way because we both shared a love of airplanes even if we differed politically. “Now why would I want to do that when I can work extra overtime, make more money, by doing the work you and your fat ass friends won’t do?”

He’d chuckle and say, “You know back when we walked the picket line we’d call you a SCAB. In fact, I’d tell you that behind your back, they’re calling you a SCAB around here because you are up the ass of management.”

At this point I would turn down the radio and lay down my wrenches and all the guys working nearby would stop to see if a fight were about to break out. “Dude, to me a SCAB is something that heels a wound. When your body is cut open, you better pray a SCAB forms to heal it. If I am a considered a SCAB around here, because I like this company from head to toe, I like the people in management, and I like the people on the paint line, then that’s a compliment. I like them all to some extent, and I’m not picking sides to suit the needs of your unions political position, which I adamantly disagree with. If I’m a SCAB it’s because I’m here to heal all the wounds you union fools inflict upon yourselves with your adversarial relationship with management in an attempt to bleed the company dry in order to garner more money for yourselves.”

He’d put his hands up defensively as the union stewards would come in closer for a listen. “Hey, I’m just trying to help you out. They (management) will use you against us, to break down our solidarity, brother.”

“I’m not your brother or any of you other guys. I’m here to make a living for my family, and if you idiots want to produce at a 40% efficiency rating, I’ll do my work and your work and take your money in overtime so I can take my wife to nice movie, or out to dinner. It’s your loss.”

Then the union steward would step in. He was a guy who clearly didn’t like me and I didn’t like him. So confrontation was inevitable. “You jeopardize everything we stand for.”

“Then you are standing for the wrong things.”

“You are too young to know what you are talking about. We worked hard for every right the people in this company have. You are ignorant, you have no idea. Someday you’ll want us, and we won’t be there for you, because you wouldn’t stand with us, and by then we will have collapsed.”

“Is that the kind of talk you use to get your wife to sleep with you? Because you’re wrong, this contract must be met. If you make yourselves a pain in the ass to the customer, they won’t give you another one, and you’ll be out of a job and all your union bullshit won’t mean anything then. “

At this point the union steward waved me off and said, “Forget it guys. He’s a puppet for management. He’ll never stand with us.” The crowd broke up and went back to work. For that day, all the workers improved their efficiency by about 15% points on average. Then the production values fell the next day back to what they were.

I made about 80K that year in overtime opportunities, picking up the slack of the union work force. The contracts did fall behind, but I made decent money for a while. The confrontations did get more violent after that, but that wasn’t a big deal. Management took my side in the injuries to the employees because they saw that I was trying to help them. But with all my effort, I couldn’t prevent the company from going out of business when the salesmen told me that nobody wanted to give our company a contract because they didn’t want to deal with our delivery times, and our union work force. So once the contracts were fulfilled, the work dried up and the company was sold within two years of that discussion.

The public unions are at that point. They have negotiated themselves out of value. Their services are too costly taken collectively, and they have built a system where much abuse is taking place, such as the double-dipping issues. If they were a private business, they’d be going out of business. But these are public employees, and we need those services. We need teachers, we need firefighters, and we need police, and we will have them regardless of Issue 2 or not. We will have strong communities too. But we won’t be used and abused as tax payers by greedy unions who force upon us a system that is rampant with undisciplined spoils. Ohio is at a point where we must have the ability to remove with surgical precision the trouble areas, and no politician in Columbus can do that. Only the members of the community know where the real trouble is, and Issue 2 gives our communities the tools to remove those trouble spots that are both costly financially, but also ethically.

Issue 2 will change things for the public unions. It will force them to deal with the tax payer more evenly. But this notion that Joe has…..that firefighter who thinks our forefathers are from the 70’s….. that Issue 2 will take away his “seat at the table” he is just sadly mistaken.Issue 2 puts the tax payer at the table equally with the unions, because right now, the only people at the table are the unions and their friends, the people we elect, yet they control, because of how the law was before Issue 2. The public is outside the door and when we ask to come in we get some stupid dance like you saw above. And when we ask what’s going on, we get the Wookie Defense and many of us are tired of it. Issue 2 brings everyone to the table equally, and that is what the public unions are afraid of, because once we get there, we’re going to find out just how much they’ve been screwing management, (ALL OF US). And they know that we will be mad when we find out. That’s what they are really scared of in regard to Issue 2. That is a wrath they aren’t prepared to deal with.

For the answer to everything as to why labor unions fail, check out this link:

Rich Hoffman

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