You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Labor Unions’ tag.

Vergara Ruling Overturned by State Appeals Court….

A California appeals court, reversing a trial court’s ruling in the landmark Vergara case, has found that California’s job-protection laws for teachers do not in fact violate the state constitution’s equal protection guarantee.

 

The appeals court ruled April 14 that the plaintiffs in the Vergara case had failed to prove sufficiently that the state’s teacher-employment laws, including tenure and termination provisions, “inevitably cause a certain group of students to receive an education inferior to the education received by other students.”

===

Exactly what those of us who read the transcripts all said… We called it a kangeroo court because it decided it decision based on shots called down to it, and not on the evidence put before the court.  There was no way the evidence pointed to that decision.

 

This is good news.   In the national test-case for unions, Unions have been declared legal and can stand stronger now……

A similar case to Vergara was  just filed in Minnesotaand this decision may put a knife in it early up there.

Advertisements

It is just another name.  In today’s reality it speaks of those 5 people who rule the world through their influence. That influence comes strictly tied to shares of ownership…. Those 5 own directly or indirectly enough of the global economy to hold everyone in thrall.

Which when they pull in the direction of our own interests, is ok. When they don’t, we have to modify their power or lose our power..

After the past recession if truth will ever become fact, you will one day learn how we needed them to jump start our post recessional economy. No one had seed money but them. We are now suffering the residuals of that effective policy. Like chemo-therapy, what once was needed for all of us, is now not.

Essentially we continue to let them benefit from the low tax rates then in effect… We used our low tax rates to compensate for other nations use of lowly paid labor in order to help us match their end-costs and stay competitive….

With the global economic implosion the top echelon lost a large percentage and in order to make them willing to throw their leftover good money into saving it, we the people had to make sure they got something back… While profits were low, our plan worked… Now that profits are high, it is working still but to our detriment.

So it is time to change.

Historically that happens with revolutions. France, Colonial America, Ireland, as well as hundreds of documented revolts in ancient Rome line historical accounts of record, where desperate men facing desperate measures had nothing to lose in completely dismantling their society….

And whether that attempt is effective or not, surprisingly…comes down to simply a contest of strength of wills between the two contesting parties. Ultimately that means it depends on your will. Do you yourself have the will for fight for your rights and if necessary risk everything you own to remain a democratic nation?   History implies we don’t; written accounts show us democracy has not been sustainable over the long term. 

Today if every American wanted some type of revolution, there would no way of putting it down. The only way a corrupt government can continue over the wishes of its governed, is to make them prefer the evils they have over what may potentially come upon them if they should ever decide to rise up…..

So as one example the force used against Occupy crowds was there to make others wary of joining in; not so much to wreak havoc on those few demonstrators who were as demonstrators, extremely almost to a fault, well behaved…..

The signal given was “yes, you can have free speech” as long as it is first approved by us…. Those few who picked their battles to demonstrate against Liberals and Socialists do not have cops dressed in intimidation descend upon their displays or bombard their gathering with helicopter backwash… Instead they have tacit approval and are left alone….

Now, none of us alive today felt affinity to those saying… “Rah, rah, rah, Support the Kochs” even though they had corporate America’s and big donor’s support solidly behind them. None of us cared to join. On the contrary in 2011, I think just about everyone felt some affinity towards the Occupy movement in one form or another so the impetus to join their ranks was very high. Many of today’s current politicians and community spokespeople were there at Occupy voting in pure democracy along with everyone else..

As an anti-authoritarian protest Tienanmen Square in China was relatively harmless in what it “did”, but was extremely damaging to the Communist Chinese government for what it “represented”, freedom of expression. Having happy people in a square is not a problem. A problem is that all other Chinese will next do the same and together coalesce and form a counter-government that almost everyone would prefer over the current existing one…

Therefore the brutality at Tienanmen Square was not necessary to clean a square of very harmless happy people… It was necessary to scare all others from doing the same… “Look what happens to you if you challenge your government”…

Now there was a huge risk in undertaking that controversial Chinese governmental policy. It could have flipped Just as easily as having a well cast die turn on its side; in turn it could have created the opposite effect causing a reaction like:… “Oh, no. They are killing us off, All of us need to join and overthrow every Communist Government leader now”… If every village simultaneously lynched, killed, or ran off their communist party, there would be nothing the Communists could do… They are hugely outnumbered.

But the Chinese leader read his population right. The massive numbers of the working class kowtowed and went back into their dutiful trained mode of keeping their head down to keep from having it cut off. On the other hand, the Russian junta two years later got it wrong… Just like the British got it wrong in America prior to 1776. Just like the French got it wrong in Vietnam in 1956. Just like the Russians and Americans both got it wrong in Afghanistan….

When large numbers of people choose to fight… it becomes very hard to regain control… One can only ultimately regain control as is ISIS today, by force and horror, and that force has to be completely overwhelming and destructively horrific enough to wipe out all bad blood, leaving only good available after one takes control… Very messy.

Our forefathers were much closer to violent history. Their ancestors unlike ours were there simply because whenever they attacked, or were attacked, they won and overcame adversity. Whoever lost got rounded up and killed off and their genes were long gone.

The founding fathers scoured history for a way to stop that trend from continuing in this brand new land. Only those of us most astute in historical archives are aware of their knowledge of interstate religious “wars” that took place here, on these shores, primarily between catholics and protestants, or Puritans and the established church… They were “wars” in quotation marks because they really only amounted to raids since so few people were here at the time.. But… they did their damage in spilled blood, but now todays children and most of the general population know nothing of it and think America was always one big happy family.

That big happy family came about solely because of the system established by the founding fathers. A system that was impartial almost to a fault, and left judgments strictly in the hands of society’s members whoever happened to be in power at that moment time…. Each of those people had to constantly receive the affirmation from those governed or lose their position to someone deemed more preferable by a majority of their constituents…..

And it’s worked so far… Just like Democracy in Rome also worked for about 250 years… Today all Americans are 12 years away from that mark in Roman history when at 250 years, Romans gave up their chartered right to rule themselves and instead settled for accepting whomever grabbed the mantel of tyrant or person holding absolute power.

Indeed. Our parallel is not only enumerative, but reflects parallels in our societies as well. We have a media that is controlled. We have the ability to monitor every citizen; to control them by intimidation over “what might happen” based on our knowledge of their peccadilloes. We are treating fellow human beings as things to be exterminated instead of human being fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters, and grandparents who are for the most part, just like us. We are at the point where as serfs we have only two options: accept what our master gives, or starve. There is no opportunity to change or step up. Suck it or else.

Likewise right now we have education slowly closing its ranks to the poor, and giving top income earners a worthy jump in life over those whose lot was to be born in the 99%…. We have corporations poisoning our food, and killing the Monarch butterfly with our representative Congress accepting its private donations and voting willingly to kill both us and many other species, even outlawing counter-studies or discussion to prevent anything bad from surfacing which could cause masses of people to change their minds.. We have energy now monopolized into the hands of very few, and so to live, must accept their price or perish.

Like the Romans we now have continuous war because both parties in Washington now get rich off off it.

So yes. From a historical point, we may very well see democracy disappear in our lifetimes and for most of us if it did, would bode little change. We’d still work, get drunk, entertain ourselves, and go to bed. Romans continued as a dominant society 400 more years after giving up their rights to tyrants. But for others, doing this will mean extermination. It will mean life’s disruption. It will mean a return to slavery… Simply because there is no longer any possible way to override the will of whatever directive each tyrant decrees…

Like every prior civilization, eventually our governmental society will soon become corrupt; since when one is in favor by the rulers one is set for life, the best way to curry favor quickly is to bestow gifts: gifts paid for by you and me. Currently the only thing keeping Democracy in its place now, is the lucky fact that no one is seriously challenging it. But give us one major disruption and someone to effectively blame it on democracy’s inadequacies.. and that tyrant suddenly looks very appealing. That so far is what we have not had, but odds say we will face soon if we do not decide once and for all right now, who we really want controlling our lives: representatives of ourselves or a monarch….

The prime question we currently face right now is how to cut the string running from the handlers to the puppets… The handlers have no real effective power. Do you even know who the top 5 hedge fund holders are? But having Carper cast a certain vote. Have Coons cast a certain vote. Have Carney vote a certain way and with 60 votes in the Senate and 218 in the House, certain policies do quietly get set…. Policies that hurt 99% of Americans, always still squeak by with only a few votes which is all they need.

The reason we are at this point is because when that argument was made, that people with money should have more clout in government over ordinary people who don’t have money… it won. And it stood up in court… Citizens United opened the door for money to takeover our government and leave 99% of our people in its dust. The original idea behind Democracy was that every eligible man had one vote. The new forthcoming idea is that if you have a hundred million dollars, you should have 100 million more times of voting influence over someone worth one dollar….

In effect, the worth of any person through this decision now became more important than the individuality of that same person…

We come from pioneer stock. It wasn’t always that way. Our ancestors knew that worth was based on luck but survivability was based on effort and that every person had an equal share in making Democracy work, and every person should therefore have an equal representation….

What Citizen’s United did was turn this original idea on its head. The idea that money spent was a form of free speech immediately gave power to those with all the money… They now had all the free speech… It was a bad idea and one that disenfranchised 315 million Americans from their own government.

Now. Even if a politician-elect is a great people’s candidate, one who was very humanly oriented in their original candidacy, after one term they too are forced into this reality of kowtowing to those who can break them. This explains the fall of Chris Coons and John Carney. As soon as the reality hits of being in Washington, it becomes explained very quickly to them by their brethren that to stay in power one must acquiesce to power. There are great forces against which if you don’t comply, can flood your constituency with a lot of trouble against which anyone would prefer not to deal.

If you are in a solid party-controlled seat, they make someone with resources primary you. If you are in a close two-party election seat, someone with resources will challenge you.. the money will be forthcoming to them… Amazing amounts of money you can only dream of seeing… (O’Donnell- Coons)…

If you were in power… why on earth would you even listen to a single person like me? Seriously. I can do nothing more than give you one vote. But Acme Corporation, rich off of Wily Coyote’s sales, can buy challengers against you for pennies on the dollar. If you vote no, when its PAC says yes… you have to question which really is the best for your citizens long-termed interests? For if you vote no as you wish, and lose the next election round, someone much worse will be thrust in your place making all those same decisions. It becomes apparent rather quickly that if you wish to keep your values for which you were elected, you need to do the dance of listening to constituents and obfuscating from them all your votes for the power brokers as best you possibly can. Ironically under Citizen’s United, this becomes indeed the preferable course of action… The last thing we need is someone replacing Carney with Copeland in the next election… Then the little people have lost all clout…

So what needs to happen is that all the ground rules quickly change in campaign finance so the power becomes more balanced between those with money and those with numbers who have little money. And that is easily done. We already did it with McCain-Feingold. That is until it was deemed unconstitutional following the Citizens United decision. The court said any containment of influence by wealthy individuals or PAC’s was a violation of free speech… What happened next was that the new influence of unlimited money, in turn violated our rights to free speech by isolating us from all ongoing dialogue, since their ad-buys block my voice out…. I now lack the free speech once afforded me because of the effects of Citizen’s United… Which means if I can no longer speak out for any of your interests, then you too have lost your right to free speech ultimately because you do not have over $100 million dollars to spend simply to get access to listeners.

Unless Citizens United is quickly overturned, our government becomes a shill for those 5 people by default.  What it has done is create an environment very ripe for all the tools we used originally to create a police society protecting us from “terrorism”, to now be used upon ourselves to shift into a new society, one complacent to the loss of our right to determine our own future…..

That scenario is NOT democracy in action….

Usually things can be easily grasped if you avoid the details and look at a broader picture…  Of course, I’m not saying never look at details… That would be silly…  But I’m saying that if you approach all situations from the bottom up, you really don’t have a clue unless you luckily enough to reach the summit and look down…  It is like climbing a mountain… If you just walk uphill… you may get there… or you may hit a wall that cannot be climbed… But looking at a satellite photo of the mountain first, you can easily track a general path, then deal with the details discovered on the ground when you get there….

What politics all comes back to, is what I first heard while making the rounds with my dad. That old man on the porch who said between cigar puffs…. “Kid… politics is about who gets the money and who controls it…”

That held for my county then, for our counties now, for our state, and federal too… Understanding  that politics is all about money, makes one understand ahead of time what will pass legislature in any given session, and what will not…

There are many ways to divide the pie…  one can base it on color of skin which has been tried in our history.  One can base it on gender, which has been tried in our history… One can base it on land ownership which as been tried in our history…  But over the course of time, each of those distinctions have fallen.  And good riddance.

Now, thanks to mass media, there is a new distinction… Between those who can buy ads to threaten lawmakers, and those who can’t…  (For simplicity more than accuracy, we will from henceforth, call them the 1% versus the 99%…..)

If one looks at the 1%’s slice of pie, prevailing wage bites into it… They have to pay a higher wage than what they could find in cheaper labor…  I mean who could not be against prevailing wage if it meant you had to pay more money which you could, if the trend were gone, keep to yourself?    So these guys do have motive, one that is dear to each and all of our hearts. Keeping their money.

But even rich people know that an argument saying:  make these people suffer more so I can become EVEN richer does not hold water in any forum.  In fact that argument is the kiss of death… So instead they find a third party to portray as victim… which is the government…  Their argument:  our government is paying more than it has to which is a waste catches more flies especially during hard times….

There are some mis-truths here that need pointing out…

One is that doing away with prevailing wage does not cut cost for government…  It does nothing like that at all in our system of bids …. Our government asks for bids, and it chooses one…. Most often there is only one bid.  That bidder gets what they ask… And with prevailing-wage-principles now gone, the owners pocket that extra incremental which was previously blamed on Prevailing Wage…

So whereas on paper one can anticipate all the labor being used on government contracts and take several dollars off every total and call that a potential savings…. it does not show how other mysterious costs will bite into and suck out those alleged savings, funneling the money over to the 1%’s bank accounts.

In other words, there will be no savings because the 1% will steal them… WE THE PEOPLE will still pay $65 million for a construction job, but instead of 53% going to wages which get spent in our state, now only 43% goes to that place… Losing prevailing wage takes money like a giant vacuum cleaner right out of Delaware’s economy… Instead of funding projects to benefit people working, we are funding the same projects to benefit those who take the money immediately right out of the state’s economy which quickly gets locked up and we will never see it again…..

Bottom line of losing prevailing wage?… A.) No money is ever saved by our government.  B.) Our Delaware local economy suffers net loss. C.) The top 1% grows 10% richer with every project the state funds….

In very surprising language from a very Conservative Pope, (Pope Francis’s predecessor)  Pope Benedict lays it out very clearly…

Today, budgetary policies, with cuts in social spending often made under pressure from international financial institutions, can leave citizens powerless in the face of old and new risks; such powerlessness is increased by the lack of effective protection on the part of workers’ associations. Through the combination of social and economic change, trade union organizations experience greater difficulty in carrying out their task of representing the interests of workers, partly because Governments, for reasons of economic utility, often limit the freedom or the negotiating capacity of labour unions. Hence traditional networks of solidarity have more and more obstacles to overcome. The repeated calls issued within the Church’s social doctrine, beginning with Rerum Novarum[60], for the promotion of workers’ associations that can defend their rights must therefore be honoured today even more than in the past…

Hence, by degrees it has come to pass that working men have been surrendered, isolated and helpless, to the hardheartedness of employers and the greed of unchecked competition. The mischief has been increased by rapacious usury, which, although more than once condemned by the Church, is nevertheless, under a different guise, but with like injustice, still practiced by covetous and grasping men. To this must be added that the hiring of labor and the conduct of trade are concentrated in the hands of comparatively few; so that a small number of very rich men have been able to lay upon the teeming masses of the laboring poor a yoke little better than that of slavery itself. 

So, if you read the above you can plainly see  we have a head of the largest Christian denomination the Roman Catholic Church, calling for the continuance of policies like Prevailing Wage, and endorsing it…. “What God has brought together; let no man cut asunder.”

What just happened June 30th, was that the total economic pie of Delaware, the one that gets divided up between the haves and have-nots, just got a little smidgen taken from the Have-Nots and  added to the side of the Haves which already own over 50% of the pie .

  • A.) No money gets saved by the Government.
  • B.) Less money now filters through our grocery stores, our restaurants, our small businesses, our handyman our landscapers, our repair shops, or our mechanics….
  • C.) The noose for 99% of us becomes tighter by another notch, which with a one way slit knot, can never be undone except by cutting away the noose altogether..

The good news is that some form of prevailing wage still stands for larger contracts.   The bad news is that we have less pie than we did a week ago, to feed all 1 million of us living today in what once were the three former counties of Pennsylvania….

But the effects of reducing prevailing wage can be countered by a government and local economy…. If we would just create an excessive tax on the top one percent while giving them the option to write off everything they spent on capital investment that year…. they themselves would have the incentive to pay more and government would not have to step in and support wages with a minimum floor… Pictorially, If the top 1% had to continuously give back the slices of pie they continuously stole from us, they would stop stealing, is basically the point of taxing excessively those only in the top tier.

Or, if we could again legally protect every American worker from being fired if they stopped workage as long as their work stoppage was linked to getting higher wages, then those wages would increase through bargaining under that threat, and laws supporting prevailing wages would no longer be necessary…

But since 1980 we have cut back on those two forms of balance so until they are restored, today’s current political climate which is controlled by the owners of excessive money , demands the necessity of continuing prevailing wage just to keep all wages higher, both private and public, since all wages have to compete for labor against the highest one on the market…

But it is ultimately our failure as a state to jump-start massive local investment by levying huge taxes on all monies the top one percent won’t spend on local capital improvements here within our state’s boundaries,  that causes us to have to defend the concept of prevailing wage.. We NEED prevailing wage just for the simple reason that all of its well-spent money comes straight to us… to all of us in the local economy when those receiving it in their paychecks, spend it!… Without prevailing wage,  it’s the Caymen Island bank accounts which swell with yours and my money…………  instead of our local economy.

Prevailing Wage like every thing in politics… is only about who gets to get their hands on the money….. Why shouldn’t it be you?  There is no reason.  Just that you didn’t ask for it; You didn’t defend your rights to it; you elected people paid for by the other side… Your lack of having enough money today comes down to your own damn fault….

Isn’t it time you did something about it?

Although support for the TDC power plant may look like a chance to support jobs, the reality it that it is an environmental disaster.

When you support a disaster, you eventually lose….

Labor Unions will lose public support if this TDC center goes through….   Withholding the environmental dangers from the public may work short term and get approval, …

But once built, and when ash particles the size of golf-balls begin to fall on Newark, Stanton, Elsmere, Wilmington and Claymont, the public will ask,,, how on earth could this have been approved?

The truth will come out at that point, that bad people sneaked it through using bad ways…..

You will eventually lose prevailing wage if this TDC goes through…. The public will turn on you.  I almost turned on you before I calmed down. Economics are a strong suit. But one’s life trumps economics.  The environmental consequences of this TDC are gigantic.  Everyone who gets cancer will blame you…  Anything they can do to hurt you will become their dying wish, if you know what I mean….

What to do….

  • Support a data center without a power plant.
  • Support building a data center in a rural area close by so we get the same jobs… 20 miles into Cecil County or east of Middletown would do the trick.
  • Support something else being built on the same location…. One that has no environmental impact.

Putting your loyalty and support behind the Data Center, is like putting your loyalty and support behind a candidate who unknown to you committed child abuse 25 years ago…  At some future point, you lose all your investment…… and are left to fight a defensive war to keep more from being taken away by business groups…..

You did not know this would turn on you.  But it has, and will get worse….   Now is the time to sneak out of the back of the crowd while no one is really looking or counting…..

Signed:  Your most ardent supporter.

K

 

Every once in a while a dumb Conservative will fall off the wagon and start blabbering about how bad unions are… Since Conservatives are today’s equivalent  of yesteryear’s Communists, and since the more they talk (as did those communists), the more the real truth emerges about their horrid ideal for America, it is my sincere wish that they keep it up.

However, just to make sure that not all conversation is one way, I wanted to give everyone a pat on the back who is Union, and thank them, by reminding them just of the powerful role they play…  When facts are on the table, the only way one can really be against unions in general, is if one shoots themselves up with heroin and looses all contact with reality … Today, you really got to be “on something” if you are anti-union…. For all realistic facts point in the opposite direction…

First, let us dispel the mentality that unions force people to be in them…. Once past that rhetorical device, one realizes there are no “forced unions” and therefore there can be no “worker’s choice” involving union ownership..  Or put in layman’s terms,  both forming, and disbanding a union operation, ARE the worker’s choice… As everyone knows,  (my goodness, I hope everyone at least knows)  it takes a majority of workers to form a union. Likewise as everyone knows, it takes a majority of workers to opt out of a union, should they find that union membership really doesn’t “do it” for them.

Workers have plenty of choices.  They can choose to make their shop a union. They can choose to undo their shop as  a union.  They can individually choose to work there under existing  union shop arrangements.  They can individually choose not to work there under existing union shop arrangements.

The argument that workers cannot choose is bogus.  It is based solely on the principle that a union has to cater to the whim of every prospective employee.  In today’s corporate world, would we expect Bank of America to have to cater to the whim of every single employee?  I wish.. huh?   So the entire argument behind “right to work” laws are about the  employer’s rights and the hirer’s rights… as in their right to be able to hire someone willing to work on the cheap, instead of what was called for in the contract he signed with the union….

Worker’s rights have never changed… if they don’t like it, they have always had the right to quit.  They are not being forced to do anything.  They have worker’s choice… The union laws don’t make unions compulsory; they merely prevent free-riding, whereby workers could get the benefits of a union contract without paying for it. ..  Would a corporation like Bank of America  keep free riders on their payroll who were getting paid and doing nothing?  I wish, huh?..

Most employers do prefer the consistency of having contracts over that of having strikes which are very expensive and are not penciled into the long term plan. Even employers are supportive of having closed shops, because only that provides the consistency they need and makes planning more accurate.

However, in attempting to close down unions in America, conservatives have stirred the ire of the American people…. “No matter their warts, unions ultimately reflect their members: typical Canadians just trying to earn a decent income, support their families, and (hopefully) retire with some security, in an economy which rewards the rich and powerful more than ever before..”

Unions represent America. After all, none of us really identify with the CEO making $1,000,000 an hour.  If he doubles his salary, it does nothing for us…  if he doubles his salary and we are the ones paying for it in lower wages, that does affect us.  Unions are the only defense America people have.

Wage gains have been small, strikes are historically rare, and even much-maligned public sector contracts have been rolled back substantially. In such a lopsided context, it’s simply impossible to convince most voters that unions are really Public Enemy Number One..

All those of us making less than $1,000,000 annually, innately understand that if the only institutional voice speaking for working class priorities is silenced, then the whole social contract will become even more tattered in the years ahead. Unions, to their credit, effectively emphasized their broader social impacts in their responses to ridiculous conservative fabrications of reality.

Every attempt to destroy unions, whether in the public or private sector, is now viewed a simply the rich, trying to take what does not belong to them, to make themselves even richer at our expense….  America can see.  It sees conservatives as mean spirited harbingers of middle class poverty.  We are on it’s doorstep now.

America can see.  it can see our fathers hard negotiated benefits they thought would one day help their children, get pulled back, and back, and back.  Health benefits, pensions, insurance,  all those things their fathers chose to take in lieu of more salary, are now clutched back into the hands of those who at one point in our father’s past, had to grudgingly fork them over… .

America can see.  Conservatives are mean spirited, hateful, selfish, brutal, and self-serving.  America can see.

Their anti Union views have pissed off moderate conservatives, who do see the benefits of being able to stand up to ones boss when he is wrong.  They blatantly offend labor unions and their families, by equating their representation with that of organized crime when the actual real criminal is the CEO running the economy into the ground. …

I hope Conservatives speak up all the louder.  For every time they open their mouth, America again realizes that Conservatives do not speak for the 99% of us… They may sometimes fool us with a quick turn of phrase.  But we’ve lived with them long enough, to know, that what they propose, and who they are, and what damage they will do to both the middle class and America… was not accurately reflected upon their original application to us for employment.

It’s past time  to fire Conservatives, for lying on their application…