Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sorting Out Right to Work Laws, Collective Bargaining Rights and Democrat Hysteria

The mass hysteria involving labor union rights escalated with the Wisconsin recall election of Gov. Scott Walter. One would have thought June 5, 2012 was the equivalent of 9/11 by all the media apoplectic and angry indignation over Scott Walter who was utterly vilified for the crime of being re-elected by the people in Wisconsin, again. Clearly, the hype was super charged and at a feverish pitch because the Wisconsin recall election was a voter referendum on big spending Democrats and public sector unions vs. the taxpayers and a governor who claimed to wipe out a multi-billion dollar deficit that he inherited from his Democrat predecessor.

If only my washing machine spun as fast as the media spin machine on the Wisconsin Gov. Walker recall election and the recent Michigan passage of a Right to Work law.

On the Walker recall election, Politico is reported that Walker decisively defeated Barrett 53.2 to 46.3, or 1,334,430 votes to 1,161,870 votes. It wasn’t even close, at least not close enough for the Dems to call in the heavy artillery of the Obama Department of Justice and Eric Holder. The Huffington Post even ran a headline suggesting that Republican vote fraud was a relevant issue. Well, there was no vote fraud and while the media probably did hang out at solidly Democratic precincts to document its spin machine exit polls, Walker won because the voters in Wisconsin turned out in massive numbers to reject higher taxes for the pampered overpaid public sector.

What precisely did Gov. Walker do to earn the wrath of public sector employees, the media and the Democrats? That question is best explained by a Democrat, albeit a solid card carrying Dem who actually supported Gov. Walker. Democrat. journalist David Asche writes, here.
It is no secret to people who know me, and to people who read my articles, that on many issues I am a democrat. I am socially liberal, support higher taxes on the top earners in the country….So it may surprise people that in today's recall election in Wisconsin, I will be pulling for Republican Gov. Scott Walker to keep his job.

If there is one thing that really annoys me about democrats, it is their love affair with unions who I believe have run their course in this country....

Here is what is at the heart of the Wisconsin recall: when Gov. Walker came into office, Wisconsin was facing a $3.6 billion budget shortfall. Walker believed that one of the solutions to this problem was to force members of the state's public employee unions to put 12.6% of their paycheck towards their health care and 5.8% towards their pensions (far less than what private sectors pay into theirs). Prior to Walker's reforms, public union members were paying next tonothing for their health care and pensions and it was being funded primarily by the taxpayers of Wisconsin. Walker also eliminated collective bargaining rights for all public employee unions with the exception of firefighters and policemen.

These reforms were absolute no brainers. Why should public employee unions be exempt from paying into their own health care and retirement while everybody else in the state (and in the country) has to pay into theirs? Democrats love to talk about a shared sacrifice, but they certainly do not apply it to their union allies.
Astoundingly, 38% of Voters from Union Households Voted for Walker, a fact that left the left babbling incoherently as they plunged into a state of disbelief.  But many Wisconsin union employees were happy.  Why?   Because they got an automatic pay raise.  Besides requiring public sector employee to pay a higher share of there substantial benefits, Walker also signed into law a measure banning non-voluntary and the forced withholding of union dues from their paychecks.  The law does not affect the collective bargaining rights of unions, just their right to extort union dues from workers.

It's no secret that public and private sector unions are nothing more than a mechanism to extort forced contributions from workers for the Democratic Party fundraising machine.  It's a non-consensual campaign contribution.  Even worse, the federal government does in fact use tax dollars to fund union bosses who run the union dues extortion rackets.

The ALG report used documents the group obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) showing that taxpayers are actually paying these 35 union officials’ salaries. Only three of them make less than $100,000 per year, and the average taxpayer-funded union boss salary is $138,175 per year. Eight of the union bosses on the taxpayer payroll at the Department of Transportation make more than $170,000, too.

The union officials taxpayers are paying for come from various labor unions, too. They include the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA), National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) and the AFL-CIO affiliated Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (PASS).

ALG president Bill Wilson said in a release announcing the report that it’s “obscene that in one Department alone, taxpayers are being stuck with almost $5 million in public employee union salary costs, these unions collect member dues and should pay for their own employees.”
Moving on to Michigan, we need to start with labor union driven ballot box initiatives that went down in flames on election day.  The Michigan Protect Our Jobs (Prop 2) ballot initiative was a labor union driven project to change the Michigan constitution to effectively give labor unions more power than elected officials and legislators, as well as the absolute power to override all local collective bargaining agreements between local government entities and unions.  Protect Our Jobs also banned Right to Work.  Another union supported initiative, Prop 4, would have forced all home healthcare workers into joining the SEIU and forced these workers to pay SEIU union dues.  Both Prop 2 and Prop 4 went down badly with only 42% and 43% respectively, and way short of the 50% required for passage, here.

With the ballot box defeats of union power, the path was cleared for the Michigan legislature and the governor to pass a Right to Work law, which they did.  Michigan became the 24th state to pass a Right to Work law, here.  Right to Work states have strong economies, higher incomes and lower unemployment than states without Right to Work.

Right To Work States Have Lower Unemployment, Higher Income and Healthcare Coverage, NRTW President Says
In an exclusive interview with "The Right Views," Mix discusses the benefits Michigan will reap by becoming the nation's 24th Right to Work state and explains that the goal is to promote prosperity and individual freedom, not to bust unions:

"First of all, Right to Work is about individual worker freedom. It is wrong to think that, in this country, we could force a worker to pay a private organization for the privilege of working. So, on a fundamental basis, it's about individual freedom."

"But secondarily, it's pretty demonstrable that economic benefit comes to those states that pass Right to Work Laws.

"Indiana, I believe, has led the nation in new private sector job growth since they passed the Right to Work law in February. The economic development department out in Indiana has indicated there have been 90 new deals of companies that have come and said 'we're interested - now that you're in a Right to Work state - to either expand or relocate in your state.' So, it has had a dramatic impact on the economic activity in the state of Indiana."

Mix notes that workers in Right to Work states not only tend to have as much as $4,300 more purchasing power, but also are more likely to have health insurance:

"And if you look at the other 22 Right to Work states, you find when it relates to private sector job growth, when it relates to increase in private sector per-capita purchasing power, or adjusted for cost of living, you find those states are doing much better.

"So, there's lots of data out there that talks about this, including a study from the George Mason Department of Economics. They did a study when, adjusting wages for cost of living, they found workers in Right to Work states have about $2,300 more to spend than workers in forced-unionism states.
The taxpaying voters in America are indeed sick and tired of being plundered by Fedzilla in the District of Crime, their governors and their state legislatures, especially considering that most folks are finally and angrily rejecting the burden of higher taxes when they are monumentally suffering because of a busted economy.

There just comes a time in every voters life when the two bit whore is just too darned expensive, and I do indeed apologize to whores who engaged in a far more honest and honorable profession than the plundering political class and their labor unions.

Americans are simple basic folks. They want to go to their neighborhood Thai dive where they find real value for their money. Government at all levels no longer even harbors the delusion of a decent bang for the buck.

Voters are finally beginning to see the union extortion racket, especially in public sector unions, for precisely what it is - a job killing, economy killing and a very costly taxpayer ripoff.

With so much suffering in America, it's downright arrogant and selfish of public sector employees to demand a perpetual license to steal from the taxpayers, many of whom are suffering profoundly themselves from the loss of jobs and benefits. They don't have a taxpayer funded slush fund to plunder.

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