Category Archives: Lobby/PAC

Union Defeat In Chattanooga

Union

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UAW Suffers Massive Defeat

The UAW is in its death thralls.  Membership is down dramatically and it needs a new source of membership; enter the southern manufacturing states.

Labor leaders say a “yes” vote is critical to the union’s long-term prospects. If successful, this would be the first victory for organized labor inside a foreign automaker’s U.S. operations in the South.

For the UAW to grow, it must make inroads with foreign manufacturers with plants in the United States; most of those operate in the South. A “yes” vote in Chattanooga could provide momentum for organizing at a Mercedes-Benz plant in Alabama, a BMW plant in South Carolina and possibly a Nissan plant in Mississippi.

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Teacher Unions Love Teachers – Not Students

Teacher

Want some proof that unions representing teachers are in it for the teacher?

Raleigh, N.C. — The North Carolina Association of Educators filed a lawsuit in Wake County Superior Court on Wednesday, challenging the state’s new private school voucher program.

The advocacy group wants the court to declare unconstitutional the Opportunity Scholarships Act, which was passed by the General Assembly earlier this year, and stop the state from issuing the vouchers.

Under the program, state lawmakers set aside $10 million in the budget to help pay private school tuition for about 2,500 students, starting in the 2014-15 school year. Legislative leaders said they plan to ratchet the fund up to $50 million a year after that.

Teacher unions are about power; not kids or education.

 

Mandatory Union Membership

Unions

Teacher’s Unions

I’ve never disputed the right of members of a group to gather in unity and plead their case.  For example, if I and several of my peers in the office were to band together and make the case that we needed more money – we have every right to do that.

As long as my employer can fire me if I stop working to protest his decision not to pay me more.

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Medical Doctor Alternatives

Doctor

I think that one of the reasons our medical care system is so expensive is that the system is not built to match procedure to appropriate expert.

For example, there are very skilled landscapers in this world capable of designing and building stunning works of art in the natural world.  And then there is the need to have your lawn mowed.  Imagine how expensive it would be to obtain a contractor to mow your lawn if you were required to hire that highly skilled, trained and often time licensed landscape designer.

Another example I came across was during a conversation with my mother-in-law.  We were discussing health care and costs and I mentioned that it’s unfortunate that I need to see an MD to have a finger reset, x-rayed and cast when I’m sure it could be done by a PA at most and perhaps a nurse at worst.

[ there may be cases where this is possible - i was using the specific example to make the larger point ]

She objected claiming that if it was her, and had she the insurance that she indeed has, she would insist on not only a doctor but then an orthopedic specialist.

Why the editorial?  I saw this and was confronted that without allowing price to act as a signal, we may not be getting optimal results:

Midwives, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and other non-doctors do as good a job as MDs in the care they deliver — and patients often like them better, a World Health Organization team reported on Thursday.

These non-physicians are especially effective in delivering babies, taking care of people infected with the AIDS virus, and helping people care for chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure, the team reported in a WHO bulletin.

The findings extend from the poorest nations to the United States and Europe, they said. While some physician groups have resisted wider use of such professionals, they should embrace them because they are often less expensive to deploy and are far more willing to work in rural areas, the WHO experts said.

“There are some obvious advantages in terms of relying on mid-level health workers,” WHO’s Giorgio Cometto told NBC news in a telephone interview.

“They take less time to be trained. Typically, they cost less to remunerate. In some countries they are more likely to be retained in rural areas.”

David Auerbach, a researcher at the Rand Corp., says other studies have shown the same thing. “There’s really not much difference you can find in the quality,” he said.

But we don’t allow the delivery of medical services be exposed to the market.  And so people are not going to shop their needs on said market.  Additionally, we have special interest groups, read AMA, that lobby to create legislation that make it illegal to see anyone BUT a doctor for such commoditized services.

 

State Of Occupy Wall Street – Raleigh Style

Occupy RaleighThought I’d slum it tonight and wander through the Occu-camp.

Not surprising.  They Gone.

Policy or philosophy differences aside, the effectiveness of the Tea Party compared to the efforts of a bunch of vagrant criminals.  One group is shaping national legislation, the other is “taking too long to respond.”

Another Reason To Hate Unions

Unions

As if I needed another reason to continue to hold unions in disrepute:

A judge ordered one of Chicago’s most politically powerful labor unions to suspend picketing against 16 funeral homes last week after receiving reports that striking Teamsters had, among other things, disturbed a child’s funeral.

SCI Illinois Services, Inc., one of the nation’s largest funeral home chains, asked a district court to intervene after striking funeral directors and drivers with Teamsters Local 727 allegedly harassed grieving families.

“We are grateful that the court agreed to issue this temporary restraining order, and we are hopeful that it will help protect grieving families who are experiencing the most difficult times of their lives,” Larry Michael, managing director for SCI Illinois Services, Inc., said in a release. “While we recognize and respect the Teamsters’ right to lawfully picket, we have been shocked and saddened by their attempts to make grieving families the target of the cruel and outrageous attacks.”

The company testified in its filing that union members blocked grieving family members from leaving its parking lot, used bullhorns to shout obscenities at workers and mourners, and unleashed a German Shepard on a dead woman’s daughter and husband.

Stay classy buys – stay classy.

 

There Goes The Neigborhood: Literally

As if we haven’t learned by now that unions are corrosive and abusive organizations that provide no productive benefit, there are states that continue to pass legislation that helps them grow*.

Ahh, Minnesota, why you?

A bitter debate results in opportunity for providers to unionize. However, Republicans say unionization would drive up daycare costs.

The bill will allow the approximately 12,700 registered in-home care providers a chance to decide whether to form a union.

If a union were to form, providers would have to pay union dues if they accept state child care subsidies, or they would be required to pay what are called “fair share dues” if they choose not to join.

Those who would rather not participate at all say they will have to turn away children whose parents pay with subsidies.

Unions backing the bill stand to collect millions of dollars in union dues, according to various estimates.

Luckily for the unions, you can’t open day care facilities in South Carolina for Minnesota families.

* 10 bonus points if you guess what political party is in power in Minnesota right now.

IRS Targetted Tea Party Affiliated Groups

Right now the report is only mentioning Cincinnati.  I’m not sure what caused the IRS to review its data or how they determined the discrimination took place, but it sure would be fun to see if they are willing to audit other IRS offices:

(Reuters) – U.S. tax auditors inappropriately targeted applications from conservative political groups seeking tax-exempt status, an Internal Revenue Service official acknowledged on Friday.

Lois Lerner, director of the IRS tax-exempt office, said the practice was “was absolutely incorrect and it was inappropriate.”

Lerner, speaking at an American Bar Association conference in Washington, said, “We would like to apologize for that.”

None of the groups that were given extra scrutiny have been rejected yet for tax-exempt status, she said.

Organizations that used the words “patriots” or “Tea Party” in their filings were flagged by the Internal Revenue Service for further review, something conservatives complained about during the 2012 election campaign.

I think it’s important to note that the IRS is reporting, as above, that no group given extra scrutiny has yet been rejected.

The Decline of the Union Worker

If the decline of the union means that American companies begin hiring more people, I’m all for the decline of the American union:

Last July was a good month for factory workers in Anderson, Ind., where a Honda parts supplier announced plans to build a new plant and create up to 325 jobs. But it was a grim month in the Cleveland suburbs, where an industrial plastics firm told the state of Ohio it was closing a plant and laying off 150 people.

Nearly all of the Ohio workers belonged to a labor union. Workers at the Indiana plant don’t. Their fates fit a post-recession pattern: American factories are hiring again, but they’re not hiring union members.

But nationally, is there a trend that would suggest that union shops are doing better than or worse than non-union shops?

U.S. manufacturers have added a half-million new workers since the end of 2009, making the sector one of the few bright spots in an otherwise weak recovery. And yet there were 4 percent fewer union factory workers in 2012 than there were in 2010, according to federal survey data. On balance, all of the job gains in manufacturing have been non-union.

This isn’t rocket surgery.  It’s been a fact for a long time now that unions are nothing more than modern day racketeer outfits.  While they may provide better compensation for their members, they restrict the number of jobs that otherwise might have been available.  Further, and perhaps more insidious, is the fact that the monies generated from their members goes straight into the hands of politicians.

Good riddance.

A Characteristic of Unions

I think that it’s important to begin any conversation regarding unions, uniting, negotiating and representing one another with some acknowledgments.

  1. I absolutely support the effort of an individual to negotiate a higher wage, better working conditions more vacation or increased training.
  2. Further, I acknowledge and support that several employees working together to negotiate these benefits are a stronger negotiating team than an individual.
  3. Employers typically look to hire labor at its cheapest price point but they absolutely look at value, not bottom line dollar cost.

So it is that I have no issue with an employee, alone or with fellow like minded employees, walking into the bosses office and negotiating higher benefits or compensation.  What I do NOT support is the legal protections that change that negotiation from one where two people each seeking their own self-interests are negotiating to one where one of the groups is given such legal protection that the negotiation turns into a racket or where extortion is taking place.

And this is where my problem with organized labor falls.  They have legal protections that allow them to negotiate in bad faith and extort the employer.

Wanna use the tactic that if you are not compensated in the way and manner you want that you’ll walk out?  Fine, but then the boss may fire you in response.

With all of that said, I’m sure there is room for debate and disagreement on the issue of union and organized labor.  However, on one point I am continually astounded that the gentle left won’t critique unions.  And that’s on their tactics.

Discussions surrounding unions always brings to mind union thugs.  The guys that go to the homes of employees who might be on the fence during strikes or organization votes.  Threats against homes and families of those members who might not be towing the line.  And even physical violence to the employers themselves whether it be harm to the individual or vandalism to the property.

This surprise of mine extends to voting methods favored by unions.  An important tactic to form a union is to utilize  public vote, one where the vote of each employee is made in public for all to see.  The idea is that if the vote is private then the employee is able to make a “No” vote without fear of retribution.  Consistently unions and labor supporters work to take away the privacy of the vote not through open and fair compelling arguments but by legislation.  When their ideas lose in the court of public opinion labor uses the law to pass their agenda.

And this feeling that unions must be supported but not the individuals that make them up is shown in the fight against “Right to Work” legislation.  Laws that don’t ban unions but simply take away their power to coerce an employee to belong or not.  No one is saying that a union, in all of its ugliness can’t exist, the law is simply saying that it has to be voluntary.

I simply don’t understand the support of union violence against people and property that is routinely ignored by the left.

And in case the threat is only veiled and simply easy to miss, labor supporters are outright calling for violence:

“We’re going to pass something that will undo 100 years of labor relations and there will be blood, there will be repercussions,  we will re-live the battle of the overpass,” said state Rep. Doug Geiss (D-Taylor).

Blood – Repercussions – Battle

So, what is “The Battle of the Overpass”?

The battle of the overpass was a bloody fracas in 1937 between union organizers and Ford Motor Co. security guards. Walter Reuther was famously thrown down a flight of stairs and another union organizer was left with a broken back.

A literal battle involving organized labor.

This movement is literally violent.  Explicitly violent.  The push to improve the rights of individuals is being conducted by those who are looking to extend and protect rights to the employee who simply doesn’t want to organize, to vote in private and negotiate on his own behalf.