Say Good Bye To Right-To-Work (Hopefully!)

Closing Thought–30Apr19

Tomorrow is the International Day of the Worker….so I thought I would post on labor and its place in American society…..

I live in Mississippi a right to work state….a term that sounds good but in reality means that if you want to work then you will work for less money……what a glorious idea of the conserv pricks in our country……I have written what I think of this idea…..and none of it flattering….

https://lobotero.com/2008/08/27/employment-at-will-vs-right-to-work/

https://lobotero.com/2011/10/10/the-right-to-work/

To say that I am not a supporter of this rip-off of the American worker would be an understatement…….but at least one state is fighting back at the attempt to make right-to-work a stable of their economy…….right to work supporters tried to use this as a union busting move and for the most part it was successful……..but Illinois is fighting back……

With the support of labor unions, a new bill prohibiting municipalities in the state from enacting “right-to-work laws” was signed into law by Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker last week.

The “Collective Bargaining Freedom Act” prohibits local right-to-work ordinances and imposes penalties for violations.

Right-to-work laws became a focus for state lawmakers after the village of Lincolnshire, a northern suburb of Chicago, passed one in 2015.

A federal court later overturned the ordinance.

One Big Union

Another weekend and we take some time to reflect on the past week and the one approaching…….since I usually do not post much politics and such on these couple of days……I will do the next best thing….HISTORY (moans, groans and head slapping)……

In my younger days I was a delegate for the IWW, Industrial Workers of the World, the original union in the beginning later came the AFL-CIO and others….my days with the union was spent in outreach and activism to help the workers…..my main work was done with bartenders and casino workers……

Most Americans have never heard of the IWW so I thought I would give them a little history to mull over while they go about their weekend duties……

It all began around the year 1905…….

The IWW changed American trade unionism forever, being the first big union to organise black and white across entire industries, and calling for the abolition of the wage system and industrial democracy. It was largely defeated by a massive campaign of repression launched by bosses and the government.

Source: 1905-today: The Industrial Workers of the World in the US

Before you think you know everything about the labor movement you might want to read this short history……..there is so much more to the movement than what you think you know…..

A few songs of the IWW to close……

 

 

My granddaughter likes Pete Seeger’s song…”All You Fascists Born To Lose”…what a great kid!

Time for me to bow out for the day…TTFN….be back tomorrow with more stuff….chuq

Labor For Life

In my younger more impetuous days I was a labor organizer and since then I am always reading about the movement and trying to decide where it is going in this country…….

In modern politics the word labor and unions are dirty words in conservative circles……..this institution has been blamed for all sorts of woes…it has been blamed for a wide array of situations from the high cost of cars to poor educational performance to the unwanted outcome of elections…..in short…..unions are the anti-Christ in some corners.

The perfectly executed character assassination of unions has, in my opinion, has lead to a weakening of labor’s position in the workplace which in turn has slowly fueled the demise of the middle class….

Fast forward to this week……the ‘big story’ has been the union vote in a VW plant in Tennessee on whether to unionize or not….BTW the union lost out in that vote…..they voted to NOT unionize…….

The obvious loser in last week’s failed bid to unionize the Volkswagen auto plant in Chattanooga, Tenn., was the United Auto Workers. The union was counting on a victory at the German-owned plant, which stayed officially neutral in the unionizing effort but hinted it welcomed a platform for organizing other plants in the South.

But the vote — and the forces that had arrayed themselves against the UAW — could also represent a setback for the economy and blue- and white-collar employees, a number of auto-industry and economic experts suggested.

U.S. management and labor organizations have battled each other —with both sides wasting resources in the process — ever since Frederick Winslow Taylor used his “scientific” methods a century ago to de-skill and control production workers, explained James P. Womack, founder of the Lean Enterprise Institute in Cambridge, Mass., and a co-author of “The Machine That Changed The World.” For Womack, the acrimonious fight and vote in Chattanooga was part of a historical continuum that has often hobbled U.S. industry, especially in the face of international competitors who embraced much more collaborative approaches to management.

My personal opinion was that it would not succeed in unionizing the plant….after all it is in the South and Right To Work is strong in the region…….so was the vote a big win for VW?  I thought so until I read another article shortly after the vote…….

The head of Volkswagen’s General Works Councils in Germany is threatening to block any further investment in the southern United States, Reuters reports, after workers at VW’s Chattanooga plant voted against union representation. “I can imagine fairly well that another VW factory in the United States, provided that one more should still be set up there, does not necessarily have to be assigned to the South again,’ Bernd Osterloh said. “We as workers will hardly be able to vote in favor” of one. Osterloh blames US conservatives for stirring up “massive anti-union sentiments.” He serves on a 20-member supervisory board split evenly between workers and management that could block future investments unless Chattanooga gets a German-style workers’ council. VW would still like to create a council without the United Auto Workers union, the New York Times reports, but legal experts say that might violate federal laws against company-controlled worker groups. Some anti-UAW workers have offered to set up an alternative union to get around the problem.

An interesting turn of the screw, right?  With all that info in hgand, who would you say was the big winner in this situation?

Please throwing your hat into this conversation.  I would like to have as many thoughts as possible……

Why The Hate?

I am sure that if you watch or read news reports you have been subject to the attacks on labor unions…..they have been blamed for every bad economic trend in this country……from expensive cars to problems in the schools to voter fraud to….well pick an issue and some mental midget will blame it on unions……..and all the misinformation has been used by red states to want to make their states right-to-work states (anyone who thinks that is a good idea then Google Mississippi stats)…….

If you work for a living then unions have help get you should horrible things as…….8 hour day, overtime, 40 hour week…..workmen’s comp……on and on……..

Union membership is at a 97-year low in America, with just 11.3% of workers belonging to one. Because you’re probably not one of them, you probably don’t care about this low point—but you should, writes Eric Liu in Time. Not only do unions lift wages for their members, they also lift wages for the rest of us “by creating a higher prevailing wage,” Liu writes. “The presence of unions sets off a wage race to the top. Their absence sets off a race to the bottom.” But most Americans don’t see it that way—rather, many see unions “as special interests seeking special privileges, often on the taxpayer’s dime.” But consider this: Workers in unions are making a better wage, and are thus less likely to rely on government assistance. “The weakness of labor is everyone’s problem—and its revival everyone’s opportunity.” Click for Liu’s full column.

Before someone thinks they have me pegged….let me say….while I believe that unions have done more good than harm….I do not like the bureaucratic structure….to my thinking the head of a union should make only 20% more than its highest paid member….but as long as we have this sort of set up….unions will be nothing more than expensive lobbyists…..

I realize that most Americans will buy into the BS spread about unions….all I can say is all that wanted to be a right-to-work state…….welcome to low ages and crap jobs……and then it may be too late to remedy the situation…….what’s the old saying, “crap in, crap out”……

Assaulting The System

For years I have been telling people to watch their backs that they were letting the politicians get away with way too much and that it would eventually sneak up and bite them in the butt…..right about now the voter’s ass should look like hamburger!

It began with the hatchet job done on ACORN by Breitbart and his lackey film maker….it seemed that the Far Right had to silence ACORN and the job it did helping poor people register to vote….for those people were “Democrats”…argh!

Then after the 2010 election we had a number of Repub governors attacking collective bargaining and union membership as some how making the deficits worse in their states….states like Ohio, Wisconsin …….after all unions were the major contributors to the opposition…..those “Democrats”…..argh!

And then Repub governors and legislatures started attacking voting…..they passed new laws that limit who could vote or made it extremely hard for some people to register….states like Florida…because these people more than likely would have voted….”Democrat”….argh!

And now there is a new approach…..the Hill is reporting….

A new proposal by the governor of Pennsylvania that would dramatically change how the state awards its Electoral College votes could have a major impact on the 2012 election — and President Obama’s reelection chances.The plan would be similar to the configurations in Nebraska and Maine, which divide their votes rather than adopting the “winner-take-all” system in place in the remaining states plus the District of Columbia. But while Nebraska and Maine have a relatively small impact on the race, due to their size, Pennsylvania’s adoption of the system would have a dramatic effect on the presidential process.

They will tinker with a plan that was stated in the Constitution….remember that document?

This plan would further eliminate the whole  idea of one vote concept….this is the attempt to find ways to prevent Obama from gaining all the electoral votes….these newly elected Repub governors and legislatures are doing what they accused us Leftist of wanting to do in the past….and yet they get support and the Left got vilified……why is that?  To be fair, this idea could well, backfire on them….but that is not important….trying to gin the system for the 2012 election is all that matters at this time…….

I warned yet again…WATCH your backs…….or you will lose what few voting rights you have now…..and there are NOT many left.

Blame It On The Unions

With the revolution, so to speak, that has been festering in Wisconsin and now moved onto other states, the unions are being blamed for everything from the election of a president to e coli…..of course this is NOTHING new….conservs have been doing this for a very long time….almost since the beginning back in the early 20th century…..

Any one that has read Info Ink for any length of time knows that I am a labor supporter but not necessarily a supporter of unions, as we know them today.  Yes, I think that labor should be lead by a separate party, if you will……but NOT an AFL-CIO type of organization……why?  It is too bureaucratic and too top-centric (if that is a word)….this was not the fault of the members but rather a labor leader back in the day, named Gompers who believed economic power was more to his liking than political power…..

If you are a worker, either union or non, there is a lot you can blame on the unions…..a whole litany of issues that conservs have seldom been in favor of in the past and most notably in the present……

  1. Weekends
  2. All Breaks at Work, including your Lunch Breaks
  3. Paid Vacation
  4. FMLA
  5. Sick Leave
  6. Social Security
  7. Minimum Wage
  8. Civil Rights Act/Title VII (Prohibits Employer Discrimination)
  9. 8-Hour Work Day
  10. Overtime Pay
  11. Child Labor Laws
  12. Occupational Safety & Health Act (OSHA)
  13. 40 Hour Work Week
  14. Worker’s Compensation (Worker’s Comp)
  15. Unemployment Insurance
  16. Pensions
  17. Workplace Safety Standards and Regulations
  18. Employer Health Care Insurance
  19. Collective Bargaining Rights for Employees
  20. Wrongful Termination Laws
  21. Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967
  22. Whistleblower Protection Laws
  23. Employee Polygraph Protect Act (Prohibits Employer from using a lie detector test on an employee)
  24. Veteran’s Employment and Training Services (VETS)
  25. Compensation increases and Evaluations (Raises)
  26. Sexual Harassment Laws
  27. Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
  28. Holiday Pay
  29. Employer Dental, Life, and Vision Insurance
  30. Privacy Rights
  31. Pregnancy and Parental Leave
  32. Military Leave
  33. The Right to Strike
  34. Public Education for Children
  35. Equal Pay Acts of 1963 & 2011 (Requires employers pay men and women equally for the same amount of work)
  36. Laws Ending Sweatshops in the United States

(Thanx to bigcorporationusa.blogspot for the list)

The next time you hear one of your potential reps telling you all about the evils of unions ask them about some of the things on the list and ask why they are so hated……so on Labor Day if you want to remember those in the Labor movement and thank them for the rights and benefits you have today….for without their work your life would be considerably more miserable than you think you have it.

Enjoy your day of fun, food and family…..see you tomorrow…….