Richard Worth’s favourite union-buster

Richard Worth’s “Political Quote of the Week” today is from John D Rockefeller, Jr, who Worth describes as a “major philanthropist – donated over $537 million to myriad causes over his lifetime (1874-1960).”

The quote is trite and not really applicable in NZ — in fact, so many of our so-called entrepreneurs simply import ideas from overseas that the reverse might be more true:

“If you want to succeed you should strike out on new paths rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success” – 

Worth, not one of the brightest sparklers in the National fireworks collection, seems blissfully ignorant of Rockefeller’s role in the Ludlow Massacre of 20 people, 11 of them children, which brought to an end a bloody strike caused by the refusal of the Rockefeller family’s Colorado Fuel and Iron Company and several smaller mine operators to recognise the miners’ union.

So, here’s a “political quote” for next week, Richard. It’s from Rockefeller’s testimony to the congressional committee enquiring into the strike only days before the massacre at Ludlow. Rockefeller is discussing the cost of keeping the miners’ camps “open” (i.e. union-free).

JDR Jr: “Our interest in labor is so profound and we believe so sincerely that the interest demands that the camps shall be open camps, that we expect to stand by the officers at any cost.”

Congressional Committee Chairman: “And you will do that if it costs all your property and kills all your employees?”

JDR Jr: “It is a great principle.”

And to think that I voted for Worth!



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