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Phila. police tie construction-site arson to union sabotage

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This is from The Philadelphia Inquirer. 

 

One of the best reasons to pass right to work laws.

When will anything be done?

Will it take a death or two?

 

The site where Chestnut Hill Friends Meeting is building a new meetinghouse was damaged by arsonists during Christmas week, and police are now “absolutely” sure the attack was the result of a dispute between members of a Philadelphia construction union and the project’s nonunion contractor.

Although no suspects have been identified in the Dec. 21 incident, Lt. George McClay of Northwest Detectives said Friday that he was certain the small Quaker building on East Mermaid Lane was targeted because it is being built with nonunion labor.

“I absolutely think it is a union issue,” McClay said.

If union members were involved, the attack would be the second violent incident in Philadelphia this year related to the use of nonunion construction workers. This spring, union protesters clashed with nonunion workers renovating the former Goldtex factory tower at 12th and Wood Streets for Post Bros., an apartment developer.

Unlike that high-profile development, the meetinghouse is a modest undertaking. The total cost for the building, which will include a work by the nationally recognized light artist James Turrell, is expected to run just over $6 million. Of that, about $3.5 million is being spent on construction.

Police nevertheless believe that it is unlikely that a random vandal carried out the attack on the Chestnut Hill site, where the steel outline of the future meetinghouse is visible. The vandals used an acetylene torch, which requires a skilled operator who must wear a special mask and gloves.

Employees arriving for work Dec. 21 said they found the site in disarray. The cab of a large, mobile building crane had been completely burned. Vandals had also used the torch to shear off the steel bolts on nearly a dozen columns. Three others were hacked halfway through at the base, as if someone were trying to cut down a tree.

McClay said police had no leads. “There is not a whole lot to go on. There were no witnesses, no video,” he said. The attack has been declared an arson.

Contractor Robert N. Reeves Jr. said he was convinced union members were involved.

“I don’t think this was a spontaneous group of kids who did this,” he said during a tour of the site Friday. “We’re really talking about the bad behavior of union bullies.”

He estimated that the cost of the damage could run over $500,000.

His company, Abington-based E. Allen Reeves, is one of many suburban firms that maintains an open shop, hiring both union and nonunion subcontractors. He said he had tangled with union members over his hiring practices.

There had been no organized picketing at this site, Reeves said. But several days before the attack, he said, representatives of several construction unions appeared at the site to discuss hiring their members. They were rebuffed, and afterward the representative from the ironworkers union “basically said to the superintendent that ‘he would do what he had to do,’ ” according to Reeves.

Ed Sweeney, business manager for the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental, and Reinforcing Iron Workers, could not be reached for comment Friday. He told the Philadelphia Daily News last week that he had not heard about the arson.

“I was up there last week and said hello to the guy, and asked if he wanted to hire any ironworkers, and he didn’t even talk to me,” Sweeney said.

The project is believed to be the first new Quaker meetinghouse in Philadelphia in more than a half- century. A statement by Chestnut Hill Friends said that the project was insured and that the damages were likely to be covered.

 

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Chris Hayes: “Right to Work” is Racist

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This is from Godfather Politics.

This is one of many reasons CNN only has two dozen viewers.

This loon posing as a reporter is really stretching to make this about race.

 

If you can’t win an argument, just yell, “Racist!” and you’ll win every time. “Anti-semitic” also works. And “homophobe” and “conspiracy theorist.” The media have proven that these methods work wonderfully in winning arguments as well as the hearts and minds of their viewers and listeners.

Referring to Michigan’s newly obtained right to work status, Chris Hayes of MSNBC wanted to make sure the rest of the panel to whom he was talking and all the listeners understood that right to work legislation has its roots in “southern racism” and racial segregation. He said:

“The phrase is coined by a guy by the name of Vance Muse, who is an oil industry lobbyist in Houston, Texas in the 1930s who is a white supremacist and segregationist, who — that’s what the term was first brought into use, to fight against unions as sites of forced racial integration. The origin of this movement is an origin of the movement of the segregationist white supremacist south against the labor union as a site of forced racial integration.”

First of all, Vance Muse didn’t coin the term “right to work.” In the context of labor unions, the phrase originally appeared in a Labor Day editorial in the Dallas Morning News in 1941. The editorial spoke in favor of a law that would allow employees the freedom to choose whether or not to join a union. The proposed law or amendment would effectively give workers the “right to work” regardless of their membership status in a union.

Apparently, when Muse read this editorial, he was intrigued by the phrase and met with the editor who encouraged Muse to use the phrase “right to work” when lobbying for legislation.

 

But Vance Muse and his “American Christian Association” were not the only entities in favor of right to work legislation. There were many who favored it. In fact, by the time the Taft-Hartley amendment was enacted in 1947, which allowed states to enact right to work laws, proponents sought to distance themselves from Mr. Muse.

Chris Hayes forgot to mention that Muse was a southern Democrat, so allegations of his being tied to racism somehow are not surprising. Even assuming that Muse was a racist, some who opposed right to work laws around that time opposed them on grounds that they would threaten racial segregation. If you think about it, right to work laws opened the doors to racial integration, something that many “closed shop” unions didn’t want. So right to work legislation didn’t have anything to do with white supremacy. If anything, it was the unions who wanted to keep racial segregation.

Actually, racial discrimination still is a problem in many unions even today, especially in the construction unions in the north. Blacks are often excluded from work because of their race, and the majority of union bosses are white. In any other business, this “inequality” would be considered racist.

Chris Hayes pretends to be uncomfortable about using the phrase “right to work” because of its “deep, dark and racist secret past.” But he ignores the racial discrimination still present in many unions and the fact that right to work states have consistently lower unemployment rates. Economies are better in right to work states where everyone including minorities have the right to work without the tyranny and/or racial discrimination of a union.

Read more: http://godfatherpolitics.com/8609/chris-hayes-right-to-work-is-racist/#ixzz2FYl36pS1

 

Virginia Moves to Make Card-Check Unconstitutional

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This is from CNSNews.

 

To the Virginia Legislature I say “Bravo.”

More states need to follow Virginia’s lead.

Unions want to be able to intimidate people into voting union.

(CNSNews.com) – Virginia is moving towards making card-check – the controversial union proposal to replace secret-ballot elections with simple card-signing petitions – unconstitutional in the state.

The effort is led by State Sen. Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsylvania) who said that “no citizen” should be denied the ability to vote by secret ballot.

“It’s really a simple bill,” Reeves told CNSNews.com in an interview Thursday. “It’s there to improve voter integrity and privacy. I personally believe that no citizen should be forced to reveal how they voted in any election be it federal, state, local, or even a union election.”

The proposed amendment would add a section to Virginia’s Bill of Rights guaranteeing the right to a secret ballot election in all cases, even in the case of a union election.

The proposal is intended to block so-called card check legislation that failed to pass Congress two years ago. That bill, which remains a Democratic and union priority, would have allowed unions to organize a workplace simply by getting a majority of workers to sign union cards, avoiding the need for a secret-ballot election where both the union and the business owners can compete for workers’ votes.

Virginia is already a right-to-work state, meaning that workers cannot be forced to join a union if one exists at their workplace. Reeve’s bill would strengthen Virginia’s legal framework by guaranteeing that card-check legislation could never be passed in Virginia.

The amendment must still make its way through Virginia’s rigorous constitutional amendment process. It is expected to pass both the House of Delegates and state Senate and be signed by Gov. Bob McDonnell (R).

However, it must be held over for one election cycle, then pass the legislative process a second time before it is placed on the ballot for voters’ approval. The earliest it could be seen on the ballot in Virginia would be the 2014 midterm elections, assuming Republicans win the 2013 state-wide elections next year.

Reeves said that the recent controversy in Michigan – where the state legislature passed right-to-work legislation over the extreme opposition of Democrats and union activists – was an unexpected boon, bringing more attention to his efforts in Virginia.

“Sometimes in this business, time means everything, so I can’t thank the Michigan state legislature enough for helping us bring this to the forefront,” he said. “It’s a critical issue, and I mean President Obama, he owes big labor and all those union bosses he owes because of what helped him get elected so they would like to see card-check come through at the federal level.”

 

 

Don’t Expect Unions To Turn the Other Cheek

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This is from Last Resistance.

I look for the Obama DOJ to try to void Michigan‘s Right To Work Law.

Obama and the DemocRats would their souls to the union thugs.

Hopefully this will be the beginning of the end for these union thugs.

Before we begin to celebrate the States rights victory signed into law in Michigan two days ago, let us all take note that laws are always open to legal challenge and money buys both politicians and verdicts in America. To Democrats and their union benefactors “right to work” laws threaten organized labor’s patronage cartel, and as sure as the day you were born Obama’s Justice Department is going to cram a federal fist down Lansing’s throat and send a painful message to big labors opponents.

It goes without saying that President Obama and Democrats owe organized labor a debt of gratitude for helping finance a 2012 Presidential victory and saving a Senate majority. A cursory look at big labor’s financial influence may shed some light on just how much loyalty is owed to big labor.

Topping the list of America’s heavy hitting campaign contributors for 2011-2012 is the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) followed by the holders of the seventh, eighth, and ninth spots on the list: Service Employees International Union (SEIU), AFL-CIO, and the National Education Association. The combined totals for all contributions originating from these unions and given to candidates, PACS, parties and outside spending groups is somewhere around $89 million dollars. I think it’s safe to say somebody owes somebody real big.

My favorite union thug, the AFSCME, represents 3,500 union locals with 1.6 million active and retired members working in public service and healthcare; in other words government employees. According to their website AFSCME members “share a common commitment to public service.” For AFSCME members “serving the public is not just a job, it’s a calling.” I tried calling the people with a calling to inquire about tax payer money being laundered from Unions to Democrats. I kept getting a computer that couldn’t answer my questions, because I didn’t know which number to push to get to someone serving the public, so we’ll have to wait and see if they respond to my public request for a comment. Right!

While working to keep America’s “families safe” and keeping “our communities strong” this noble tax payer funded union managed to contribute $38.5 million dollars to PACS, parties and outside spending groups benefitting Democrats. Now if you ask me that’s a heck of a lot of taxpayer money funneling back to Washington’s greasy little palms.

The AFSCME ranks number one in the hearts of Democrat politicians who decide minor national issues like minimum wage, overtime pay, benefits, hiring, labor law and card check. In fact not one contribution or dollar spent on behalf of the AFSCME’s loyal membership was given in support of any Republican candidate our conservative cause for the 2012 election cycle.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees influence is not limited to elections. Last year the AFSCME spent over $2 million dollars to lobby our elected government on issues relating to Federal Budget & Appropriations, Education, Economic & Economic Development, Environment & Superfund and Government Issues. It’s worth noting that 2 of 10 AFSCME lobbyists have previously held government jobs.

Two former public servants turned Democrat Party bag men, David Marta (former assistant for Steny Hoyer and Dick Gephardt) and Marc Granowitter (former legislative assistant for Nancy Pelosi) now spend their days directing Democrat’s big labor crusades for AFSCME while tax payers foot the bill. After all as a 501c5, big labors champion doesn’t have to pay federal taxes.

So as taxpayers look to the future with the hope of shrinking government and reigning in out of control spending, watch Attorney General Eric Holder and his Civil Rights Division. I suspect that he will use his remaining time in Washington to execute brutally expensive hit and runs on State governments that refuse to conform to big labor’s demands. The will of the people is only respected when it has the backing of big cash and with big labors organized corruption owning the Executive Branch it’s only a matter of time before Obama and Democrats sue their way to a payoff.

(The data for this article can be found at www.opensecrets.org.)

Unions Furious: Michigan to Become Right-to-Work State Today

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This is from Town Hall.

We see how important the children’s education to the teachers.

Because of the teachers being part of the rent a mob schools are closed.

If you want to be a sheeple and join a union you can do so.

However due to Right To Work laws you can not be forced into a union.

The vote to turn Michigan into a right-to-work state will take place today after days of protests in Lansing about the pro-worker legislation that prevents having to pay dues to a union. Not surprisingly, local police are bracing for possible violence today as more protests are planned.

Even with the outcome considered a foregone conclusion, the heated battle over right-to-work legislation in the traditional union bastion of Michigan shows no sign of cooling.

Authorities in Lansing were bracing for an onslaught of demonstrators Tuesday at the Michigan Capitol as the Legislature reconvenes for what could be final votes on bills. Hundreds of people gathered early Tuesday to get inside.

Yesterday while in Michigan campaigning for his new $1.6 trillion tax increase, President Obama slammed right-to-work states all over the country, saying legislation on the table in Lansing isn’t about economics but about attacking unions.

“These so-called right-to-work laws, they don’t have anything to do with economics, they have everything to do with politics,” Obama told cheering workers Monday during a visit to an engine plant in Redford, Mich. “What they’re really talking about is giving you the right to work for less money.”

Schools have also been closed so teachers can go protest today because afterall, “it’s all about the kids.”

At least two Michigan school districts have announced plans to cancel classes Tuesday – the same day some teachers and other union protesters are expected to converge at the state Capitol to protest right-to-work legislation.

Warren Consolidated Schools in southeast Michigan is canceling school “due to the number of staff who has notified us that they will be absent” Tuesday, according to a letter from Superintendent Robert Livernois posted on the district website.

Let’s not forget that President Obama refused to comment when his former chief of staff and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel failed to give protesting unionized teachers exactly what they wanted. Apparently his criticism only applies to Republicans.

Before this week, the last time the Chicago Teachers Union went on strike was September 8, 1987. It lasted until October 3, during which officials, teachers and parents clashed in the city’s longest teachers strike ever. After it ended, I called the Chicago school system the worst in the country.

President Obama has been noticeably silent. He shouldn’t be. The nation deserves to know whether his allegiances lie with his political allies in the public sector unions or with Emanuel and Duncan. This power struggle will reveal much about the constitution of the modern Democratic Party.

If the legislation in Michigan passed and singed into law by Republican Governor Richard Snyder, the Wolverine State will become the 24th in the country to have a right-to-work law on the books.

UPDATE: Much like Wisconsin in 2011, out of state union workers are being bused in to help storm the capitol.

Michigan is getting bombarded by out-of-state union activists, including protestors from Wisconsin. They’re expecting union protestors from Ohio and elsewhere, too.

Look for a surge in notes from doctors practicing near the state capitol for union members skipping work on Tuesday.

Reminder:

 

Michigan Republicans consider “right-to-work” legislation

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This is from Yahoo News.

More states need right to work laws.

So the Mafia Union Bosses can not sake people down for dues money.

Money that the Mafia Union Bosses give to DemocRats.

(Reuters) – Michigan‘s Republican-led legislature is considering a push for a “right-to-work” law that would make paying union dues optional in a state that has one of the highest union membership rates in the United States and is home to the United Auto Workers.

Republican Governor Rick Snyder, who had said in the past that a “right-to-work” law was not appropriate for Michigan, said on Tuesday the issue was now under discussion, though he did not say if or when a proposal would be introduced.

“We want to have a thoughtful discussion so there will be ongoing dialogues, say, tomorrow and the next day and we will make a conclusion when appropriate,” Snyder told reporters after meeting on Tuesday with Republican state House and Senate leaders.

No action was taken on a proposal on Wednesday.

Michigan would be the second state in the nation’s industrial heartland to adopt such a law after Indiana this year became the 23rd state with such laws.

“Right-to-work” laws typically allow workers to opt out of paying union dues, forbidding requirements that a person must join a union to work in a certain shop.

Supporters say the laws help attract or retain businesses, while opponents say they suppress wages and benefits for workers, and undermine the financial stability of unions.

Republicans control Michigan’s legislature and governor’s office. Voters in November rejected a measure to enshrine a right to collective bargaining in the state constitution, leading to renewed calls to take up the right-to-work issue.

The Michigan Chamber of Commerce on Monday backed passage of right-to-work legislation, citing in part a survey that found 85 percent support among its members.

When asked whether he thought right-to-work laws were right for the state now, Snyder said on Tuesday, “I am not going to make a conclusion on that. We are having thoughtful discussions.”

Michigan House Speaker Jase Bolger and other Republican leaders have sought to generate support to pass a right-to-work law during the December lame-duck legislative session.

“Discussions about Freedom to Work legislation are continuing and there is no final agreement or decision on whether to move forward or what that would look like if we do,” Ari Adler, Bolger’s spokesman, said in a statement on Wednesday.

The Metropolitan Affairs Coalition, which includes both business and labor interests, last week urged Michigan not to pursue right-to-work laws.

“We continue to be hopeful that RTW be for discussion … not legislation,” coalition president Paul Tait said in a statement on Wednesday. “This is clearly divisive and counterproductive.”

Tait said Michigan’s economy is turning around, in part, because of good labor-management relations.

“Anything, including RTW, that would derail that progress makes no sense,” Tait said.

About 17.5 percent of Michigan workers were members of unions last year, placing it fifth among states, compared with 11.8 percent of workers nationally, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The potential action in Michigan follows efforts that greatly curbed the bargaining powers of public sector unions in Wisconsin in 2011. Ohio residents turned back efforts to curb public sector union powers in 2011 through a referendum vote.

Michigan Union Presses Panic Button Over Right to Work Rumors

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This is from Town Hall.

 

It is time to break the unions strangle hold on America’s businesses.

At one time unions served a purpose.

Now they just shake down their members and destroy businesses.

Michigan Union Presses Panic Button Over Right to Work Rumors

 

The Michigan Education Association always portrays itself as the poor, pitiful victim.

 

It was the victim when the legislature passed relatively mild education reforms. It was the victim when its ballot proposal to enshrine collective bargaining in the state constitution was soundly defeated by voters Nov. 6.

 

Now the union is wringing its hands over a rumored Right to Work proposal that may be introduced and debated in the state legislature during the lame duck session.

 

On Tuesday, the union pressed the panic button and issued a screed to its members via email:

 

“With just a few weeks left in the Legislative session, right-wing politicians in Lansing are looking to exact political revenge against union members by ramming through dangerous bills that will harm school employees, middle-class families and children throughout Michigan.

 

“Their reckless agenda includes:

 

• Undermining workers’ rights by passing so-called “right-to-work” legislation 

• Instituting voucher-style “reform” of our public schools 

• Cutting taxes even further for corporate special interests 

“These extremist legislators must be stopped immediately. The Working Michigan coalition is holding events across our state tonight and tomorrow night to help mobilize union members and supporters in the effort to fight back.”

 

It’s hard to feel sorry for this group of tin-horned gangsters. They were in a good position and they got too greedy.

 

Gov. Rick Snyder has been criticized for not being tough enough on public sector unions like the MEA. He went out of his way during the union-led kerfuffle in Wisconsin to say he did not want the same type of showdown in Michigan. He, without provocation, essentially called any meaningful labor reform dead on arrival.

 

But the unions’ attempted power grab – Proposal 2 – apparently changed all that.

 

The unions broke the apparent truce with a proposed constitutional amendment that would have repealed all of Snyder’s education reforms and allowed collective bargaining agreements to trump state law. MEA officials (and their allies) stood before cameras, thumped their chests and declared they would spend $25 million to pass the amendment.

 

They failed, and now the Right to Work folks are out in force, hoping to capitalize on the union defeat.

 

So now the unions are attempting to marshal their forces in an effort to protect their last bastions of power: compulsory union membership and automatically deducted dues. A Right to Work law would eliminate those union lifelines.

 

If it is indeed introduced, Right to Work legislation it would likely come to a vote. The antics of Democrats legislators in Wisconsin, who fled the state in 2011 to prevent a vote on anti-union legislation, could not be replicated. Michigan law gives power to the Speaker of the House to order the state police to round up legislators, even across international lines.

 

We have to wonder if the MEA regrets breaking the truce with the Snyder administration and pushing for passage of Proposal 2. They’ve talked their way into a dangerous corner and they’re not sure how they’re going to manage to escape.

 

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