As with so many other things, such as vegan restaurants and the crack epidemic, California leads the country in destruction by government unions.
California's civil service unions have employed all the usual thug techniques –- regular strikes (illegal until the California Supreme Court approved them in 1985), rolling strikes, the "blue flu" (cops and other public-safety workers calling in "sick") -- all of which are almost as harmful to the state as when they actually show up for work.
While taxpayers groan under their tax burdens, one group of voters is constantly lobbying for higher taxes: government employees, who are paid by the taxpayer.
When California voters approved Proposition 13 back in 1978, cutting astronomical property taxes 57 percent, the public sector unions went ballistic.
Union bigwig Ron Coleman said, "We're not going to just lie back and take it."
John Seferian, vice president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), said the union should have told politicians: "Hey, we'll bring the roof down on you." (Which you have to be a member of the roofers' union to do.)
Jerry Wurf, president of AFSCME, warned that the union was "prepared for confrontation."
His solution to the ballooning cost of government employees was ... guess? That's right, it was the same as it always is: Tax the rich.
"Let the big shots pay!" Wurf said. Embodying the hopes and dreams of our Founding Fathers, Wurf said organizing government employees was part of his goal to "remake the economic and political system" in line with the vision of socialist Norman Thomas and the Young People's Socialist League.
Members of public sector unions see their pensions and benefits the way the Mafia views its "partnership" with a restaurant, as described in the movie "Goodfellas": "Business bad? F--k you, pay me. Oh, you had a fire? F--k you, pay me. Place got hit by lightning, huh? F--k you, pay me."
Spoiler alert: When the restaurant owner is unable to pay his mob tribute, they burn the place to the ground.
But government employees aren't exactly like the mob. At least the Mafia guys have a strong work ethic.