"The only way to save the middle class", says local AFL-CIO chief

The local AFL_CIO prez is running an ad promoting The Employee Free Choice Act.

My union is pushing this bill hard too. And I am puzzled about
it. This bill would take away the secret ballot option for
workers who are deciding on whether or not to unionize.

I thought the freedom to vote in private is a big hallmark of
Democrats, but it isn't in this case.

 

Organized labor's
highest legislative priority, the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA, H.R.
800), would replace secret ballot union organizing elections with "card
check," in which union organizers publicly solicit workers' signed
union authorization cards. If a majority of a company's workers sign
cards, they all automatically join the union without an election. In
public, unions argue that card check reveals employees' preferences
more reliably than the private ballot. But in private, union activists
acknowledge that workers often sign union cards because of peer
pressure or harassment and that publicly signed cards do not reflect
workers' true intentions. That is why unions argue against letting
workers use card check to leave a union. Policymakers should understand
that union activists know that card check does not reveal employees'
free choice.

Card Check Would Not Solve Alleged Problem

Labor
activists want Congress to require workers to publicly sign a union
card to join a union, rather than cast a private ballot. Unions say
that card check is the only way to determine whether workers truly want
to join a union because companies routinely fire union supporters and
intimidate workers into voting down unionization.

In fact, such
firings are both illegal and rare. Data from the National Labor
Relations Board (NLRB) show that employers illegally fired union
supporters in only 2.7 percent of organizing election campaigns in 2005.[1]
If widespread corporate intimidation were a problem, however, forcing
employees to make their choice in public instead of letting them vote
in private would only make it worse.

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Labor/wm1386.cfm

 

Unions Know Card Check Is Unreliable

Nonetheless,
unions publicly insist that Congress should pass EFCA because card
check best reveals workers' intentions. In private, however, union
organizers agree that publicly signed cards do not reflect workers'
true beliefs.

Union organizers currently solicit signed union
cards from workers to request that the NLRB hold an organizing
election. Union organizing manuals caution organizers that a worker's
signature on a union card does not mean that he or she wants to join a
union or will vote for the union in the election. Unions have known
this for decades. The AFL-CIO's 1961 Guidebook for Union Organizers states:

NLRB
pledge cards are at best a signifying of interest at a given moment.
Sometimes they are signed to "get the union off my back"…. Whatever the
reason, there is no guarantee of anything in a signed NLRB pledge card
except that it will count towards an NLRB election.[2]

Unions
regularly submit publicly signed authorization cards from a large
majority of a company's workers, only to see the workers reject the
union in the privacy of the voting booth. In a study of organizing
campaigns, the AFL-CIO admitted that "it is not until the union obtains
signatures from 75% or more of the unit that the union has more than a
50% likelihood of winning the election."[3]

When
organizers solicit union cards, they visit workers' homes in groups and
put them on the spot with high-pressure tactics. They only give one
side of the story and ask workers to commit immediately. If a worker
does not sign the card, they return again and again until the worker
does.[4]
Cards signed under these circumstances are far less likely to reveal a
worker's true intention than a private vote held after time for
reflection.

Unions Oppose Card Check for Decertification

Unions
know that card check does not reliably reveal workers' wishes and that
it can lead to workers being pressured into signing a card. That is why
unions have argued against letting workers use card check to decertify
their union as passionately as they now argue in favor of card check
for organizing. In a brief to the NLRB, the AFL-CIO quoted the Supreme
Court in arguing that workers deserve the privacy of the voting booth
when deciding to leave their union:

No votes yet

This bill would take away the secret ballot option for
workers who are deciding on whether or not to unionize.

No it wouldn't. It would take away the EMPLOYER'S ability to FORCE a secret election even the employees want a union. The employees can still have a secret ballot election if 30% of them want one.

The way the system is set up now, 100% of employees could agree to union representation, and the employer can still force an election. In the meantime, they force them to listen to anti-union propaganda and threaten their jobs and fire people for trying to organize.

Pink Slip

Make Ohio and Michigan "Right To Work" states and get rid of the Marxist Socialist Unions.

Why did Tennessee get the new VW plant and NOT Michigan, the former center of the automotive industry?
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jAgSQ0VczWzZH7Y-3KCESryj9tigD91UGACO1

BECAUSE TENNESSEE IS A "RIGHT TO WORK" STATE.
http://www.right-to-work.org/states/tn.htm

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

Right to work states (or free-riders), have more poverty, workers make less money, and they have less access to healthcare.

Pink Slip

It will take a year or two, but Michigan and Ohio will be total welfare states with NO healthcare except what mommy government dishes out, NO income except what mommy government dishes out, MUCH MORE POVERTY since there are no jobs, not as many people working to pay into the welfare system, not as may working people to pay into the Unemployment program, and those who DO have jobs will be at McDonalds since they will hire anyone who does not belong to a Union and can count to 5.

But WHAT A BASE OF VOTERS FOR THE DEMOCRATS!

Since Dimocrats need poverty, need strife, need envy and need to PAY for their base of dependant Mommy-state voters.

Meanwhile, Tennessee HAS 1700 NEW JOBS FROM VW COMING IN, which includes healthcare, includes benifits and A COMPANY THAT PAYS TAXES into the state coffers.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

Which has a Democratic Governor, desen January 18, 2003 – present Democratic b. 1943 NY Businessman, and the House has a Democratic majority, and an equal party representation in the Senate, is using tax incentives and tax payer dollars to lure companies to the state.

Is it party politics or the incentive to invest for the future.

So according to the article NC referenced, this deal wouldn't have happened without corporate welfare from "mommy government". Gee BlowMe, with all of those government giveaways to VW, will they end up paying ANY taxes at all??

Pink Slip

You belong to a collective of people WHO CANNOT MAKE IT ON THEIR OWN. You think THAT SINGLE GROUP OF UNEDUCATED SLOBS gives you a job?

NEWSFLASH: You wouldn't have a job if it weren't for factories. There wouldn't be factories if there wasn't investment. There wouldn't be investment if their weren't MANAGEMENT and CAPITAL, and there IS NO CAPITAL if there is NO PROFIT.
Like it or not, wether you are a Marxist or not, THAT IS THE WAY IT IS IN AMERICA (and now Russia for that matter).

Get it MORONS? Management and "the rich" don't need YOU. YOU need them. YOU need factories that THEY own.

And your Unions are biting the hand that FEEDS YOU. Meanwhile, Ohio and Michigan jobs go to places where THE UNWASHED UNION HACK MORONS are not extorting other peoples' money from them.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

Get it MORONS? Management and "the rich" don't need YOU. YOU need them. YOU need factories that THEY own

Not really. I think there is a symbiotic realtionship between a factory(owner) and the employees which work there. Without each other, neither would exist.

Having said that, I have been a NON-Union worker for over 20 years. The wages and benefits I receive far exceed those that I ever hoped to receive as a member of the UFCW; plus, I do not have to pay someone to support a political candidate which I do not agree with. Of course, breaking out of the mold of Union puppeteering dictated that I think for myself, bargin with my employeer on my own for the best deal I could negotiate, live up to my obligations and profile skill sets I presented during my interviews, and become a supporter of capitalism and a participant in a capitalist economy. In other words...HARD WORK. I was raised to understand that "there is no such thing as a free lunch".

- Just the KAT, thinking out loud again.

If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth. ~Japanese Proverb

Relatively sure that most people understand that without capital investments, there would be no industry and jobs.

VW set up in Tennessee, because the state offered incentives to do so.

The infrastructure will be built for the plant, whereas, Michigan roads were noted to be in poor shape and the access was not there.

VW, was offered tax incentives, tax breaks and tax credits for jobs that were and are to be created.

Now, some will say that this should not be done, the incentives and tax breaks.

The story is not the work force, the story is the actions taken by the state of Tennessee to get the VW plant.

Michigan and Ohio and other states have highway infrastructure in poor shape or the location is not conducive, in a logistical way to the company.

VW went with Tennessee because the state offered to work with and build what needed to be built for the plant.

To state that we need the employers is like stating that we have a right and left hand, we know that.

Neither state, Ohio or Michigan, is doing very well at attracting companies or start ups, because of many things. Complacency is also another.

Both have relied on the auto industry or steel industry, or some other industry that has down sized, instead or being proactive and looking for businesses to attract.

But, then again, some do not want tax monies used for the attracting of businesses.

You wouldn't have a job if it weren't for factories

There wouldn't be factories without workers.

Management and "the rich" don't need YOU

Actually, I am management. But management needs workers. But corporate-apologists like yourself need/want/demand/beg GOVERNMENT to interfere in the labor market by legislating "right-to-work" laws, instead of letting the free market work. Damn commie....

Pink Slip

"But management needs workers" and "interfere in the labor market by legislating "right-to-work" laws"

So management NEEDS workers, they just don't NEED UNION workers. And THROUGH FORCE, the Unions have interfered with the labor market by artificially inflating wages and benifits to the point of being unsustainable any longer. Look at GM for instance.

And since the UNION has a closed market (since Ohio and Michigan are NOT 'Right To Work' states) If YOU want to hire another employee, then YOU are going to hire a Union worker. Period. End of story. Quit whining.

You may have a more qualified worker over there, one with more education who will work harder for the same amount of money or maybe less, one that you don't have to worry about walking out on strike and SHUTTING YOU DOWN, an employee who will be as faithful to you as you are to him.

-OR-

You have the drooling moron who couldn't find his ass with both hands and suffers from a terminal case of lazyness BUT HE IS A UNION MEMBER.
Guess who you are forced to hire? And guess who the Union is going to spend TONS of money to protect him from getting fired after he shows up to work a day late and drunk on his ass?

You must be happy that YOU are not really management, you are a zoo-keeper. YOU cannot hire who you want. You cannot hire who you need. YOU cannot hire the best employee, YOU WILL hire who the Union TELLS you to hire.

Get over it.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

It's far too simplistic and erroneous to blame GM's woes solely on unions. Management has a large share of the blame.

You may have a more qualified worker over there, one with more education who will work harder for the same amount of money or maybe less

True, and I may also want to employ a child who I can force to work for 16 hours a day, 7 days a week, pay them pennies, force them to work in asbestos-filled rooms, with no bathroom breaks, etc, etc. That would be great for my bottom line. Luckily, we have labor laws. Many of these labor laws came to be thanks to collective bargaining. Forty hour work weeks? Weekends? Holidays? Healthcare? Safer work conditions? Thank collective bargaining. These benefits allowed me to be a happy, productive worker, who worked his way up to management. And I recognize the mutual benefits that come from a healthy management-labor relationship.

Pink Slip

From Pink_Slip:The way the system is set up now, 100% of employees could agree to union representation, and the employer can still force an election.

Which is the way things should be. I see no problem with a secret ballot election, no matter who does or does not want a vote by secret ballot or an election, or both. I see a major, major problem with a public ballot.

In the meantime, they force them to listen to anti-union propaganda and threaten their jobs and fire people for trying to organize.

Ah, yes, the infamous they. They are oppressive, controlling dictators who maximize profits at the expense of human dignity and worker's welfare. They and their hatchet men management seek to intimidate the poor, honest working folks everywhere.

Just not the ones in the three piece suits with the broken noses.

Get a grip. For every employer that distributes anti-union literature and promises a bleak future if the employees join a union, there's a pugilistic thug out in the parking lot slashing tires.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

Ah Madjack....champion of the overdog.

Pink Slip

My dept where I work went through this a couple years ago. I'm glad there was a secret ballot because it was a real close election. The people against it won by only 3 votes (thankfully). The whole ordeal caused a lot of animosity in the department and relationships were never the same.

My company has many union employees with varying union contracts that work just fine for them. The non-union people like me are perfectly happy without a union.

The funny part of the story where I work is that the people that started the attempt to unionize us were already in the union and wanted to get us in it too. They have since voted out their union. Most of the people in our little group that wanted to join have since left the company for other jobs (voluntarily).

*

Sure Glad as hell I'm retired.

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"Oh, Bother!" Said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.

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'I used to have compassion, but they taxed it and legislated it out of existence.'

It's nothing more than a power grab by unions, and it shows they're corrupt. Union membership has been generally declining for years, and union support among the populace is getting lower every year. The union leaders know their thugs can be persuasive to those who aren't union friendly, and they don't mind letting them loose. Secret ballot is the best because people don't feel as likely to be harrassed, and anyone who denies harrassment won't happen is an idiot.

Secret ballot is the best because people don't feel as likely to be harrassed, and anyone who denies harrassment won't happen is an idiot

Does this include harrassment by management "thugs"?

Pink Slip

being honest...there is no businessman, politician, union, etc looking out to save the middle-class. Look out for yourself is the only answer.

Not to steal your fire, but that's largely what I've been telling people all along.

The middle class may be a tax-target (making enough income to attract taxation, but not enough to avoid it), but its strength through the decades has been its ability to reduce expenses in order to open a margin of SAVINGS within its income. Eventually that SAVINGS is used to purchase things desired which increase the quality of life.

But the pervasive credit model broke that strength like it was a dried stick. Now we're surrounded by middle class who are so in love with all the crap that credit buys them, that they either REFUSE to downsize living standards, or they wail like little bitches and say they CAN'T downsize.

All this crashing of the middle class can't stop if they refuse to voluntarily downsize their desires, even their needs, in order to open up that margin of SAVINGS.

Note that I keep capitalizing SAVINGS since that's distinctly different than all this asset speculation going on. SAVINGS means CASH, or an insured investment like a CD. Piling all that CASH into a money-market account, stock, gold fund, etc. is NOT SAVINGS. You're just subjecting your savings to investment LOSSES. It's because the middle class saves so LITTLE that it seeks to overcompensate with "investment" returns. That, and because most investment advisors these days are completely corrupt, and urge people to take on far more risk than they should.

that they either REFUSE to downsize living standards, or they wail like little bitches and say they CAN'T downsize

 

I've got a good one for you, GZ...I work with a single lady who only has to support herself (no husband, children are adults with self-supporting jobs.) She has recently taken on a part time job in addition to the job we work at together, because she "can't make ends meet without one."

Mind you, we do the same job, so I know roughly what she makes (mid-40s salaried). I have managed to support a family of 4 on that same income, so it boggles my mind that she can't maintain just one person with it. Even with the prices increases for so many goods lately, I still think that a single individual in Toledo, Ohio should be able to live fairly well on a mid-40s salary.

I don't actually say anything, because I do like her...just gives me a little chuckle every time she complains about "having" to work 2 jobs.

While for the most part agree with the bulk of your statement, I do take issue with only cash being real savings. You can loose money on cash the same you do with gold or stocks.

The $500 you put into a CD 18 months ago at 3% interest, buys you how many gallons of gas today verses 18 months ago? IE your dollar has lost value.

The $500 in gold (an example - I don’t own gold outright) purchased 18 months ago will buy a heck of a lot more gas today because it’s worth a whole lot more. Saving should be about diversification of your wealth. I keep mine spread out between cash, stocks, mutual funds and some other things that my financial guy could explain way better then me.

Have my stocks lost money lately? You bet, but I wasn’t complaining when I was making 15-18% per year either.

Sens, you're talking about inflation. Are your stock and bond investments exempted from inflation? No, inflation eats ALL investments equally. So in judging an investment, inflation should never be mentioned at all.

Not to steal your fire, but that's largely what I've been telling people all along.

Aw, you have not. I've never heard you say that, GZ.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

This is not the only blog I post on.

Sara, its ironic you mention that, i have a similar situation, but the lady in question makes about $12,000 more a year than i do, she has only herself and i have a family of 3.

I subscribe to the black box theory, as explained to me by a good friend, Pistol Pete. Pete, being self-made, wealthy and a class A hell raiser, explained that what ever else you do, put a few bucks away each week and don't ever touch it. Put it away in cash. Stash it somewhere safe. The theory here is that if anything ever happens, you'll have an amount of US cash money that no one knows about. Not the government, not the IRS, not anyone. Can you imagine how valuable that cash might be some day?

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

you'll have an amount of US cash money that no one knows about...Can you imagine how valuable that cash might be some day?

At least a couple of Euros.

Pink Slip

"NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee officials say they won't know for several weeks how generous their incentive package for the new Volkswagen AG plant to Chattanooga will be.

Gov. Phil Bredesen and other members of his Cabinet told reporters Tuesday that the German automaker is still working on designing the $1 billion plant, so it's not yet clear which infrastructure improvements the state will need to be made to the site.

Tennessee state law provides for a $5,000 corporate tax credit for each new employee brought to the state in large industrial projects. Those credits last up to 20 years for investments of at least $1 billion and 1,000 new jobs.

Bredesen also won approval this year for a new tax exemption for integrated suppliers that locate near project that invest at least $1 billion. Eligible suppliers qualify for the tax breaks regardless of how much they invest or how many jobs the create."

http://bama.live.advance.net/newsflash/statebusiness/index.ssf?/base/bus...

"State and local incentives for Volkswagen AG’s estimated $1 billion investment in Chattanooga could top $400 million over the next 20 years, according to available figures, but Gov. Phil Bredesen said Tuesday officials won’t know actual costs until later.

Calling the incentives a “fairly complicated package,” the governor said that because Volkswagen still is designing the auto assembly plant, total infrastructure costs remain unclear.

“It’s competitive with what other states are offering,” Gov. Bredesen told reporters of tax, training and development incentives after the German auto manufacturer’s announcement it is building the new plant at Enterprise South industrial park. “I don’t have a dollar figure to put on it right now.”

http://timesfreepress.com/news/2008/jul/16/chattanooga-vw-incentives-cou...

"While VW did not give any reason for choosing Tennessee over the other states, the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association says one of the reasons is because of Michigan's failure to fix its roads and bridges. Mike Nystrom, the Vice President of government and public relations for the lobby group said in a statement:"

http://www.michiganmessenger.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=1581

Great example, of a company stuck in one gear.

The buying habits of the U.S. consumer have been changing for years. GM has been closing plants for decades, a few here and few there.

Now that, the consumers want smaller cars GM is downsizing even more. This was and is a management problem.

"And since the UNION has a closed market (since Ohio and Michigan are NOT 'Right To Work' states) If YOU want to hire another employee, then YOU are going to hire a Union worker."

If the workers are unionized. If they are not an employer is free to hire who they want.

But realistically, the membership in unions have declined and continue to do so.

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