Standing up for Workers? Hardly!

Standing up for Workers? Hardly!

For decades, Thomas Sowell has been a voice of reason and that voice continues with his latest column, "The Last Thing Unions Are Concerned About Is Free Choice For Workers." Sowell writes: Labor unions, like the United Nations, are all too often judged by what they are envisioned as being — not by what they actually are or what they actually do. Many people, who do not look beyond the vision or the rhetoric to the reality, still think of labor unions as protectors of working people from their employers. And union bosses still employ that kind of rhetoric. However, someone once said, "When I speak I put on a mask, but when I act I must take it off." That mask has been coming off, more and more, especially during the Obama administration, and what is revealed underneath is very ugly, very cynical and very dangerous. As workers in the private sector have, over the years, increasingly voted to reject joining unions, union bosses have sought to replace secret ballots with signed documents — signed in the presence of union organizers and under the pressures, harassments or implicit threats of those organizers.Now that the administration has appointed a majority of the National Labor Relations Board members, the NLRB has imposed new requirements that employers give union organizers with the names and home addresses of every employee. Nor do employees have a right to decline to have this personal information given out to union organizers, under NLRB rules. In other words, union organizers will now have the legal right to pressure, harass or intimidate workers on the job or in their own homes, in order to get them to sign up with the union.

Union Bosses Hate Gov. Walker For His Success

Union Bosses Hate Gov. Walker For His Success

The Investors Business Daily nails it -- the union bosses hate and fear Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker because his plan is working and is a model for other states seeking to balance their budgets: Backed by a massive, well-financed Big Labor machine, the Democratic Party is determined to reverse the democratic election of Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker. His crime? Fixing his state's economy. Democrats and their powerful [forced-dues funded] union allies got the more than half a million signatures needed to hold a recall ballot intended to remove Walker, a Republican elected in November 2010. The vote will be in just over two months. Or did they? "Adolf Hitler" and "Mick E. Mous" were successfully weeded out — plus tens of thousands of other invalid entries. But ABC-TV's Milwaukee affiliate was told by a man on the street that "I think I signed about 80 times" over two weeks. How many others like him were there? There have been two successful recall movements in American history. California Gov. Gray Davis, responsible for California's unprecedented electricity crisis, was replaced by movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2003. And 1921 saw the grass-roots ousting of North Dakota Gov. Lynn Frazier, whose state takeover of farm-related industries rendered the state bank insolvent. [Unlike those recalls] The Wisconsin recall would undo the election not of someone who has been resoundingly successful, not who wrecked his state's economy. [Forced-dues] muscle, not popular discontent, is driving this movement. On taking office, Walker made it clear he meant business and dared to squash the unholy trinity of Big Labor, politicians and money, which poses such a danger to the entire nation. He had the guts to say, "Collective bargaining isn't a right; it is an expensive entitlement." Acting on that principle, Walker balanced a $3.6 billion budget deficit without raising taxes, reduced the tax burden on entrepreneurs, reformed regulation and instituted what he calls "the most aggressive tort reform in the country" against frivolous lawsuits targeting businesses. Is it a coincidence that Wisconsin unemployment is its lowest since 2008? Did Walker devastate state government? Quite the contrary. His clampdown on collective bargaining ended seniority and tenure for public school teachers, replacing them with hiring and firing — and pay — based on performance. He gave each of the 300,000 Wisconsin state workers the right to choose on union membership — and financing Big Labor's political activities through dues. Speaking before the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington in February, Walker emphasized why he is being targeted: "The big government union bosses are worried that workers may actually choose to keep the money for themselves." This explains the tens of millions of dollars they spent last summer on six Wisconsin state Senate recall elections.

Union Bosses Raid Pensions

Union Bosses Raid Pensions

Taxpayers are footing the bill and business is getting the blame for the pension crisis in California but the real culprit is the union bosses of the Golden State, the Investors Business Daily reports: Reports from a variety of media reveal California state employees are spiking their pensions to stratospheric levels, leaving nothing for their brother employees. Sorry, can't blame Wall Street for this one. In a laudable instance of the mainstream media doing its job, the Los Angeles Times, the Sacramento Bee, Bloomberg News and City Journal have all exposed "pension spiking" by California public employees. Basically, they manipulate rigid unionized pay and promotion systems to raise their pensions well above what they earned during their working years. The Los Angeles Times on Saturday pieced together tough-to-get data from Kern and Ventura counties and found a fiscal horror story: In Kern, 77% of public employees with pensions greater than $100,000 actually get more than they did during their working lives. In Ventura, the figure is 84%. Kern has a $761 million pension shortfall, in part due to the practice. Both the practice and the lack of transparency are signs of a rotten system. Bigger counties like San Diego and Los Angeles also permit pension spiking.

Mix: Indiana Rejects Forced Unionism

Mix: Indiana Rejects Forced Unionism

Writing for the Investor's Business Daily, National Right to Work President Mark Mix summarizes what our victory in Indiana really means: For the past two weeks, Big Labor bosses around the country have had their eyes on the Indiana capitol — watching in horror as the General Assembly passed a right-to-work bill with commanding majorities. The passage of Indiana's right-to-work law is an extraordinarily bitter defeat for the union brass. Less than a year ago, despite the fact that Hoosiers had elected substantial pro-right-to-work majorities to both chambers in 2010, union strategists remained confident they could preserve the forced-unionism status quo. Last year, union bigwigs convinced the entire Democratic caucus of the Indiana House of Representatives to flee the state for five weeks in order to deny the body a quorum it needed to bring up and pass right-to-work legislation. Big Labor clearly believed whatever it lacked in legislative numbers it could make up for in zeal. But polls showed Hoosiers overwhelmingly disapproved of the "fleabagger" tactic, and right-to-work supporters kept turning up the pressure on Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels and GOP legislative leaders to fight back against Big Labor. Thanks to legislation passed after last year's walkout, House members failing to show up to do their jobs when the General Assembly is in session may be hit with $1,000-a-day fines. In the opening weeks of the 2012 session, House Democrats went public about their reluctance to jump over a cliff again for the union hierarchy. Finally, on Jan. 24, House Minority Leader Pat Bauer announced an end to his caucus' boycott of the bill. It passed the next day. Ever since, the caterwauling by Big Labor and its allies has resounded across the state. But what's so bad about a law that merely says an individual shouldn't be forced at the workplace to support financially an organization that he or she doesn't believe acts in his or her interests? Rather than address this question, union propagandists skirt it. Union officials never act contrary to the interests of any employee, they implicitly argue. Any employee who says otherwise they brand as a hypocritical "freeloader"!