Indiana becomes the 23rd state to pass the controversial “right to work” law. The Governor of Indiana, Mitch Daniels, expressed his views in a television commercial ad (paid for by anonymous donors, of course).
Mitch Daniels claims that Indiana is losing jobs because, “we don’t provide workers the protection of right to work. Right to work just says no worker can be forced to pay union dues against his will. But this simple protection really matters.”
Besides being completely false, these comments are scripted in accordance with the “right to work” frame.
Simply put, “right to work” is a frame designed to convince Hoosiers to support this draconian law that will actually strip away worker protections by making it illegal for workers to collectively bargain for higher wages and benefits once corporations legally drive down their wages. The statements made by Mitch Daniels are designed to evoke this frame, which implies that workers rights are being taken away, and the only thing that can prevent this travesty is to vote to protect workers rights by supporting the “right to work” law.
Sounds good, right?
Despite the actual evidence of the negative impact “right to work” (for less) has had on states that have enacted this law, radical right wing groups have figured out that the facts don’t matter if the issue is properly framed, and repeated often enough.
This illustrates why right wing talk show hosts, media pundits, and others on the corporately controlled media outlets all use the same language. They are not worried about what the evidence shows, or what the facts are. Instead, their primary concern is repeating the language of their frames enough times so that people start believing them.
For those who are continuously subjected to the “right to work” frame, (ie, Fox news viewers, right wing radio listeners) the take away is that liberals are somehow taking our rights away.
What about the right to a living wage, or the right to collectively bargain, or the right to pensions earned through years of hard-work and devotion to a company, all of which will be stripped away from us if we fall for the “right to work” frame and vote against our self-interests in the states we live in.
Mitch Daniels ended his commercial with this line. “Join the huge majority of Hoosiers who support right to work reform and the new jobs it can bring to our state.”
That’s funny, because an estimated 10,000 protesters showed up at the state capital to express their anger over the Governor’s radical plans to strip away worker’s rights.