Tag Archives: Unions

Union Defeat In Chattanooga

Union

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.

 

Teacher Compensation: North Carolina

Teacher

How Much To Pay A Teacher

I was a teacher.  My dad retired a teacher.  Many friends and family are still teachers.  Further, other than that family, teachers were some of the most influential people in my life  hell, one teacher is largely responsible for the man I am today.

And my kids have teachers.  Lots of ‘em.

I. Love. Teachers

So, when asked how much we should pay teachers I come back to this:

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Death Of A Teacher’s Union

Teacher

I absolutely love Love LOVE this turn of events:

The union representing Kenosha teachers has been decertified and may not bargain base wages with the district.

Because unions are limited in what they can do even if they are certified, the new status of Kenosha’s teachers union — just like the decertification of many other teachers unions in the state that did not or could not pursue the steps necessary to maintain certification in the new era of Act 10 — may be a moral blow more than anything else.

Teachers in Milwaukee and Janesville met the state’s Aug. 30 deadline to apply for recertification, a state agency representative says. Peter Davis, general counsel for the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission, said the Milwaukee and Janesville districts will hold recertification votes in November.

To continue as the recognized bargaining unit in the district, 51% of the union’s eligible membership must vote in favor of recertification, according to the controversial Act 10 legislation passed in 2011.

With contracts that were in place through the end of June, teachers in the three large southeastern Wisconsin districts were protected the longest from the new legislation, which limits collective bargaining, requires unions to hold annual votes to be recognized as official entities, and mandates that teachers and other public employees pay more out-of-pocket for their health care and retirement costs.

Christina Brey, speaking for the Wisconsin Education Association Council, downplayed recertification, calling it just another hoop for local unions to jump through.

Unions can exist without certification, but they cannot bargain for limited base-wage increases with the district. And there are fees involved with chasing recertification.

“It seems like the majority of our affiliates in the state aren’t seeking recertification, so I don’t think the KEA is an outlier or unique in this,” Brey said.

It’s long past time that we recognize that unions across America are nothing more than power grabs and democrat fundraising machines.

Good riddance.

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.

 

Wherein Pino Is Fine With A Worker’s Strike

Strike

I’m harsh on labor unions.  In today’s world – and for much of the time I’ve been alive, labor unions have been the scourge of life.  Nothing but sucking the productive forces of our economy and lining their pockets off the backs of the workers.

Actions truly worth protest march.

Anyway, today there is a semi-nationwide strike:

Workers at the nation’s best known fast-food restaurants in seven cities across America are planning to walk off the job Monday to protest what they say are wages that are too low to live on. In a move orchestrated with the help of powerful labor unions and clergy groups, the workers plan to strike for a day to demand their wages be doubled.

The Washington Post reports that the protests will take place in New York City, Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Kansas City, and Flint, Mich., involving workers at McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s and KFC. Some employees at stores including Dollar Tree, Macy’s and Victoria’s Secret are also expected to join the protesters in several cities.

The workers are calling for wages of $15 per hour, more than double New York’s current minimum wage of $7.25.

As far as I can tell, these workers are not represented and actually could be fired if their employer so desired.

THAT is the type of labor protest that I can respect!

I remember, years ago, working in a catering gig when the boss, a reasonable man, offered me a promotion running a cafeteria at a local community college.  WAY more responsibility and work, staff and everything.  When I asked what my raise would be he said, “There wouldn’t be a raise, just the opportunity.”

Knowing that my field of choice was not going to be in the food industry I declined claiming that the money didn’t justify the effort.  He mentioned that he could just change my assignment and force me to report to my new job Monday.  I told him that he could, but that he wouldn’t want to have to train me and then my replacement in a matter of 6 weeks.

So I GET the fact that people don’t wanna work for less money than they feel they ought to.  And I think that they SHOULD walk out if they feel strongly enough.

Good for these guys and gals.

What I oppose is the racket that is the union basically legislating rules that tip the balance in their favor.

However, the grievances these guys make are less than compelling:

“A lot of the workers are living in poverty, you know, not being able to afford to put food on the table or take the train to work,” Fast Food Forward director Jonathan Westin told CBS New York. “The workers are striking over the fact that they can’t continue to maintain their families on the wages they’re being paid in the fast-food industry.”

Simple fact – these jobs are not meant to support families.

Robert Wilson, Jr., a 25-year-old McDonald’s employee in Chicago, told The Washington Post that he makes $8.60 an hour after seven years on the job. A previous walkout in April led to “small victories,” he said, including additional hours and slight raises.

Simple fact – These jobs are not meant to be stayed at for 7 years.

The truth is that these jobs are meant to be entry level low paid gigs that, in addition to paying money for baseball cards and skateboards, teach young people work ethic, job skills and interpersonal skills.

These jobs are MEANT to be worked for a year or 3 while in school and then left for greener pastures.  These employees are being underpaid, they are overstaying.

Detroit – How Did We Get Here

Detroit

De’troilet is and has been a mess for decades now.  A prime example of what happens when a democrat party controlled by unions (sorry to repeat myself ) has control of a city.

An insightful story in what residents of De’troilet have to look forward to:

In a small mill town in New England, dozens of retired policemen and firefighters are feeling the pain of what they see as a broken promise, offering a glimpse into what could happen to thousands of public workers in Detroit facing massive reductions in pension payouts after the city’s declaration of bankruptcy.

Donald Cardin became a firefighter at age 20 in Central Falls, R.I., a town just north of Providence that filed for bankruptcy in 2011. He was making $60,000 a year as a fire chief before retiring at age 42 in 2007 to take care of his wife Lana, diagnosed with thymic carcinoma, a rare cancer with extremely low survival rates.

The couple relied on Cardin’s health insurance, which required no copay, to cover Lana’s $8,000-a-month treatment. Cardin worked a part-time contracting job to make up the difference between his $34,000-a-year pension and his former salary.

But that all changed in 2011 when Cardin, and his fellow firefighters and policemen, were called to a meeting at the local high school, where state-appointed receiver Robert Flanders warned them that the city would not have enough money to survive if pensions were not cut. Weeks later the city would file for bankruptcy.

Bruce Ogni, 53, president of the Central Falls Police Retirees Association, won’t forget that day, either.

“All of a sudden they dropped this on us. There was no real negotiation. Flanders came in and said the city is in big trouble, we need half your pension and your medical,” he said.

With a wife and twin boys to care for, Ogni lost $1,200 a month and had to pay additional fees incurred by his wife’s health insurance. Eight months ago, Ogni’s wife was diagnosed with breast cancer, adding more medical bills to the family’s worries.

Ex-fireman Laurie and his wife, Kathleen, live off disability from social security (which he receives from previously working part-time jobs in addition to his service as a fireman) and a $19,000-a-year pension — down from $39,000 before the cuts.

The Lauries makes just enough money not to qualify for public assistance, but the $2,700 the family brings in each month barely covers their $2,300 in monthly bills.

Each of these individual stories is heartbreaking, to be sure.  Life threatening cancer to disability to expecting twins.  All of which is enough to occupy a man, but then the additional pressures of having your world turned upside down.

But there are some striking observations:

  1. What reasonable world do we live in that allows a man to retire at 42 with $34,000 in pension AND full health benefits?
  2. Every single one of the subjects is a tragedy.  Cancer, disability and expecting wife with twins.
  3. A 53 year old President of the Retired Police Association?

Personally, I think that contracts between companies and their pensioners should be upheld – the folks no longer have a position from which to bargain.  If my company changes my compensation, I can leave or stay.  However, with that said, these unions have absolutely been acting in bad faith and without moral concern for the parties involved.

They elect their cronies to office in order to negotiate with themselves.  The deals they strike are so ridiculous as to fail to pass a red face test.  And then, when the parasite finally kills the host leaving nothing but a dead husk – they act so SO surprised and innocent.

As if.

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.

Best Headling Of The Day

Union

This made me smile:

Union rights dealt a blow again by appeals court 

The National Labor Relations Board violated the law when it required U.S. businesses to put notices in their workplaces and on their websites informing employees of their right to unionize, a federal appeals court ruled on Tuesday.

A unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit struck down the rule, finding that federal law prohibits the labor board from punishing a business for speech, or lack of it, as long as the business does not issue threats.

Freedom of speech “necessarily protects … the right of employers (and unions) not to speak,” Judge Raymond Randolph wrote for the appeals court.

When the power of trade unions grow, the liberty of individuals is diminished.

Unions: Legalized Racketeering

Unions

I have no issue whatsoever with the McWorker, along side his McFriend, walking into the McBoss’s office and asking for a raise.  And if denied, threatening that the two of them, in hopes they are valuable, will walk off the job and go to work somewhere else.

In this case, the McBoss can call the McBluff and say, “No raise for you!” and hope the McWorkers get back to McWork.  Or, perhaps the McBoss, seeing the value of the McWorkers, will relent and approve the raise and everyone is happy.

In other words, uniting in the pursuit of self interests is fine.  As long as the rules are fair for everyone.  And when it comes to unions, the rules are most certainly not fair:

“The most glaring examples of union favoritism under state laws,” notes a 2012 U.S. Chamber of Commerce report, “tend to occur in criminal statutes and allow individuals who engage in truly objectionable behavior to avoid prosecution solely because they are participating in some form of labor activity.”

Pennsylvania unions now enjoy a loophole that the state’s anti-stalking law “shall not apply to conduct by a party to a labor dispute.” In Illinois, anti-stalking laws exempt “any controversy concerning wages, salaries, hours, working conditions or benefits … the making of collective bargaining agreements.”

These exemptions prove that organizing tactics used by unions can have something in common with those of stalkers – and can perhaps inflict similar emotional distress.

While a number of states have exemptions that have allowed union members to intimidate and harass, California is by far the worst actor. As in other states, it is a crime in California to interfere with a lawful business through physical obstruction or intimidation of workers or customers.

Yet California has exempted unions from this law. The negative effects were clear in 2008, when United Food and Commercial Workers Union members picketed a new Ralph’s grocery store in Fresno. They went beyond traditional picketing, harassing customers and instigating confrontations with employees on store property. When store workers finally called the police, authorities refused to come and put a stop to the union’s disruptive behavior.

The police refused to even dispatch to the site.

But it gets even worse:

California also has a host of exemptions that allow union members to violate the property rights of private citizens. The 2008 Researcher Protection Act makes entering the residences of academic researchers to interfere with their work a crime. Sounds reasonable. Yet this doesn’t apply to union members. They can invade a professor’s home in California and it’s not a crime – so long as the invader is “engaged in labor union activities.”

And even worser:

Labor bosses have even deemed it necessary to get legislators to grant unions exemptions from laws against sabotage. Wisconsin’s state law against sabotage exempts unions, so as to not curtail their organizing activities. The fact that anti-sabotage laws might be construed as an impediment to union organizing says more about union organizing efforts than anything else.

Yet, in 2011, union members were alleged to have sabotaged equipment belonging to supporters of Governor Scott Walker’s labor reforms. In New York and New Jersey, during a labor dispute between Verizon and the Communications Workers of America, the telephone company contacted the FBI to investigate allegations of sabotage. The company reported equipment being stolen, fiber-optic lines cut and an office heating system tampered with.

During a union organizing effort in Ohio, the owner of one non-union electrical services company had his tires slashed and rocks thrown at his windows. One of his employees was assaulted. The owner was himself shot in the arm while confronting a person who was vandalizing his car on his property. Other owners of non-union shops experienced similar harassment and intimidation. When the Associated Builders and Contractors called on unions to halt such odious behavior, the unions responded that their actions were perfectly legal.

We all should have the right to bargain for our services and our compensation.  We should be able to grieve our differences when they occur.  But we should all be safe from threats, violence, theft and assault.