In the Sacramento Bee, Daniel Weintraub observes the legislative efforts of United Farm Workers union officials to eliminate the secret ballot elections for California’s farm workers:
Thirty years ago, legendary union organizer Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers made history by winning the right to a secret ballot for migrant field hands in California who wanted to join a union. Today, in an odd twist, the UFW is trying to take that right away.
The article echoes a 2001 letter written by George Miller (D-CA) and a group of other Congressmen urging Mexico to adopt the secret ballot for its unionization elections. In it Miller wrote:
[W]e feel that the secret ballot election is absolutely necessary in order to ensure that workers are not intimidated into voting for a union they might not otherwise choose.
Now Miller is the sponsor and lead advocate of Big Labor’s “card check” bill that would eliminate the secret ballot election for unionization here in America.
Sure the hypocrisy is overwhelming, but upon further review it is not so surprising.
Unions were granted powers under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) that remain unparalleled for a private organization. Among other unique special legal privileges, unions can forcibly represent people and then force those already coerced workers to pay, under threat of termination, for the unwanted “representation.”
Back when the New Deal-era NLRA passed, unions shrouded their extraordinary powers over individual workers with a secret ballot election in attempt to legitimize their ability to coerce employees.
Now, having used the forced dues collected with their extraordinary powers to amass the political influence necessary, union officials are scrapping the secret ballot altogether in an effort to further expand their power to coerce individual employees.
It’s a move Tony Soprano would be proud of.
This 1977 article from the Right to Work archives underscores that union officials have long sought to establish beachheads for seizing forced dues in Right to Work states by simply dubbing certain land a "federal enclave." So it seems, the latest battle in Texas is nothing new.
In also noting that compulsory unionism abuse cuts across every cross section of America, the article notes:
"…this is everybody’s fight, whether they realize it or not, or fight it or not."
Mark Turek of Unfairshare.org, a grassroots citizens’ group in Maine opposed to compulsory union dues for State employees, became the latest in a line of employees to quit in protest. Turek resigned Labor Day Monday, blasting the compulsion that he feels has poisoned his workplace.
"There are so many inappropriate things happening within Maine State Government, I am no longer able to work in that environment," stated Turek. Vowing to persevere despite leaving his job, he continued, "Our general taxpayers and the hard-working state employees all deserve a better system, and I sincerely hope that happens some day. Happy Labor Day!"
How many more employees have to jump ship before the powers that be in Maine ditch forcing workers to pay dues’ Bravo to those employees that have stood fast in the face of this continuing injustice.
When will union officials learn that Texans don’t want them messing with their Right to Work”
If you haven’t yet, take a look at the inspiring story of Juan Vielma, a brave Texan who stood firm on principle against forced union dues in the face of immense pressure. Refusing to cave, Juan told his home town newspaper, "I work to get paid, I don’t pay to work."
Couldn’t have put it better.
Yesterday there were articles in both the DC Examiner and Washington Post about efforts by a group of union lawyers to force employers to bargain with unions that have not even been chosen by a bare majority of employees. In the Post, Bloomberg columnist Cindy Skrzycki writes:
The United Steelworkers, United Auto Workers and five other unions petitioned the National Labor Relations Board on Aug. 14 to require employers to bargain with small groups of union members, even if the union doesn’t represent a majority of those in the workplace… The petition would force employers to recognize unions that would bargain only for their dues-paying members — so-called members-only unions.
What is most striking about this rulemaking petition is that union officials have conceded the falsity of their flimsy justification for compulsory unionism. National Right to Work Foundation vice president Stefan Gleason addressed this when the petition was originally filed last month:
Filing of this NLRB rule-making petition may be one of the biggest political mistakes union officials have ever made. The Steelworkers and its coalition of other unions have conceded that they are not actually forced by law to represent employees who are not union members and who do not want their "representation."
Through their rule-making petition, union officials have totally undercut their justification for compulsory dues privileges. Big Labor’s opposition to Right to Work laws (which ban compulsory unionism) has been predicated upon union complaints about the so-called "burden" of representing nonunion members. Today’s filing demonstrates that this common union argument is disingenuous at best, and a fraud at worst.
Here are just some of the op-eds from National Right to Work out there today on Labor Day 2007.
Mark Mix has a piece in the Washington Times about the Police and Fire Fighter Monopoly Bargaining Bill. Mark also writes today in the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram about the Foundation’s latest efforts to protect workers from compulsory unionism in the Lone Star State. He also has pieces in the Great Falls Tribune about a Montana Right to Work law, in the Detroit Free Press about a Michigan Right to Work law (scroll down), and the Rochester Post Bulletin on the Card Check Forced Unionism Bill.
Meanwhile, Stefan Gleason writes on National Review Online about the National Labor Relations Board failing America’s workers.
The Wall Street Journal’s John Fund nails it in his article "Crime Without Punishment." The Federal Election Commission’s $775,000 fine against the union-dues-funded America Coming Together (ACT) 527 group is a pathetic joke.
This fine is less than one percent of the $100 million illegally funnelled into electing liberal Democrats and "Giving George W. Bush a one-way ticket back to Crawford, Texas." Perhaps the puny fine levied against the group founded by George Soros and SEIU union president Andy Stern should instead be referred to as a federal election "commission."
Stripping union officials of their power to force American workers to pay dues would do far more to clean up the political process than relying on some feckless federal agency like the FEC.
In Tuesday’s Indy Star, Ed Fuelner hits the nail on the head with an article on Congress’s efforts to slash the budget of the OLMS (the Department of Labor office that investigates union fraud corruption and the misspending of union dues):
Unions control some $22 billion, a staggering amount of money. All of it comes from their members. These workers deserve to know what union leaders spend their hard-earned money on — whether it’s the $65 million the National Education Association gave Jesse Jackson’s liberal pressure group in 2005 or the $130,000 salaries earned by 49 union leaders at AFL-CIO headquarters last year.OLMS is clearly doing a job that needs to be done. Its hundreds of criminal convictions prove that.