Posts Tagged ‘Richard Trumka’
We have documented the way in which NLRB nominee Craig Becker’s testimony has failed to assuage the concerns that the former SEIU attorney’s anti-employer views would impair his ability to function in his potential new role.
But there’s also the concern that his mild-mannered answers — which could have left many thinking he has changed his view that he could use the NLRB to replace the current secret-ballot system with card check — didn’t tell the whole story.
LaborUnionReport.com points out this claim by AFL-CIO
boss Richard Trumka organizing boss Stewart Acuff on using the NLRB to pass card check when legislators would not:
It [sic] we aren’t able to pass the Employee Free Choice Act, we will work with President Obama and Vice President Biden and their appointees to the National Labor Relations Board to change the rules governing forming a union through administrative action to once again allow workers in America access to one of the most basic freedoms in a democracy–the freedom of speech and assembly and association so that workers can build the collective power to challenge the Financial Elite and Get America Back to Work. [Emphasis added.]
Hmm. Certainly worth keeping in mind as Senators send his nomination one more important step into the process Thursday morning.
Stephen F. Diamond writes a how-to guide for new AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka on making the AFL-CIO “relevant again.” It’s worth a read to look at where Big Labor has come from, where it is, and where it could go.
This is what caught our eye, though. Diamond opines Trumka:
must rally solid support in America for democratic rights and better pay and working conditions for the billion or so workers who now have joined America in the global economy, in countries such as China, Mexico, Turkey and Vietnam.
Perhaps starting with more democratic rights for workers in the United States would be a better place to start. That would include scrapping the Employee Free Choice Act, but that’s unlikely as the misnamed bill is Labor’s top policy priority.
So it goes …
It’s the oldest problem around: how does a sales team pitch a product that a lot of people aren’t wanting to buy? If you’re a Dilbert fan, the answer is here. If you’re an organized labor fan, the question is much more complicated.
Apparently the head of the AFL-CIO has decided to give organized labor a PR makeover. According to US News and World Report’s website:
Richard Trumka, expected to be elected head of the AFL-CIO later this week, knows labor has an image problem. And he’s ready to take it on. “Our goal,” he says, “is to try to begin to speak again for all workers.” Already, he’s planning to reach out to blacks, young workers, and the working poor. He blames the media in part for the bad image, suggesting that editors cut or trash broader stories on the labor movement.
There’s going to be a number of problems for this re-branding campaign because there are a number of very serious and legitimate objections people have to the way union officials have set up to represent only some workers. Here are some of the not-so-small obstacles:
- Approval of unions in the U.S. is at an all-time low, with 46 percent saying unions mostly hurt the companies they organize, 51 percent saying they mostly hurt the economy, and 62 percent saying they mostly hurt non-union workers
- It will be difficult to explain how unions speak for all workers when they push for union-only Project Labor Agreements that raise costs for taxpayers and cut out most of the construction industry from vital public projects
- It’s also going to be difficult to speak for all workers when organized labor spends heavily to push an unpopular political agenda
All that — and, of course, the wildly unpopular Employee Free Choice Act. So, good luck to union officials hoping to put lipstick on this proverbial pig. We recommend that they address the core concerns of Americans before they go investing too much hope in smoke and mirrors.
If there were some sort of little hobgoblin, tucked back in the hovels of the U.S. Capitol, whose sole task was to convince the public that the Employee Free Choice Act is a good idea, then that poor little guy would be having yet another terrible day.
Our friends at Shopfloor.org point us to this comment from incoming AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka:
Today, more than ever, we need to be a labor movement that stands by our friends, punishes its enemies, and challenges those who, well, can