NILRR Weekly Newsclips February 22, 2013




NLRB Sneak Attack on First Amendment, February 15, 2013

The NLRB is up to its sneaky ways and they are hoping to slip another precedent shattering decision under the radar.  According to the U.S. Supreme Court in the Beck decision, employees can object to a portion of union dues’ expenditures if the dues are being used to fund political activity not related to collective bargaining or contract administration.  In a recent case, the United Nurses and Allied Professionals (Kent Hospital) and Jeanette Geary, case, however, the NLRB decided an employee, who objected to the union’s expenditures, did not deserve to have any verification showing proof how the union was spending its funds.

Michigan teacher unions race to ratify contracts ahead of right to work

If You Must Defend Forced Unionism, Defend It Forthrightly, February 22, 2013

The U.S. Supreme Court’s unexpected decision in the spring of 1937 to uphold the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) gave a massive and almost immediate boost to union organizers.  Millions and millions of workers joined unions during the late 1930′s, and contracts empowering union officials to act as employees’ “exclusive” bargaining agents in contract talks with their employers also proliferated.

Immunity From ID Theft Laws – Another Court-Created Special Privilege For Big Labor?

National Institute for Labor Relations Research, February 22, 2013

The U.S. Congress started the ball rolling in 1914 when it adopted the Clayton Antitrust Act.  Prior to the Clayton Act, the prohibitions in the Sherman Act of 1890 on combinations or conspiracies aimed at restraining or obstructing interstate commerce applied to both businesses and labor unions.  At the beginning of the 20th Century, union officials launched a lobbying campaign “to get the antitrust laws modified so as to exempt unions from their application.”[1]  Section 6 of the Clayton Act, adopted at union lobbyists’ behest, reads, in part:

Michigan teacher unions race to ratify contracts ahead of right to work

The Detroit News Online, February 18, 2013

Less than six weeks before Michigan’s controversial right-to-work law takes effect, teachers unions across the state are clamoring to get new contracts approved, in what some observers say is an effort to get around the measure and keep dues flowing into union coffers.

How Obama caters to federal employee unions

The Washington Examiner Online, February 19, 2013 

In a separate post, I note that the amount of time federal workers spent on union activities while on the job has been increasing under the Obama presidency after declining during the Bush administration. What may account for the increase? Well, President Obama signed Executive Order 13522 in 2009, which created the National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations. In the order’s words, it created:

Manufacturing Makes a Comeback, Obama Oddly Takes Credit

Real Clear Markets, February 20, 2013

In his State of the Union speech last week President Obama tipped his hat to the resurgence in American manufacturing jobs, then pledged to assist the process by expanding the government’s network of so-called ‘innovation hubs’ around the country. In these centers the federal government will concentrate its investments and those of private partners in research, development, training and start-up funding, all aiming to help turn around areas of the country “left behind by globalization,” the president said.

Feds charge former local union pres & aide with stealing union money, February 13, 2013

According to the indictment, Payne and Brown prepared and used false and altered documents to deceive union officials and obtain union funds purportedly to pay for legitimate assets, goods, services and travel expenses for the use of the union.  In fact, however, those expenses covered the personal expends of the defendants and others.

Steve Gunn: Unions stomp on new right to work law with speedy, long-term union contracts

Muskegon Chronicle Online, February 20, 2013

Now unions across the state are taking advantage of that loophole and racing to negotiate new collective bargaining agreements, or extensions of their current agreements, before the March deadline.

If they can extend their contracts for another two or three years, all their members will remain trapped in the union and paying dues for at least that long. And the longer-term strategy involves the election of a union-friendly governor in 2014 who will quickly rescind right-to-work laws before the contracts expire.

Then the unions would never be forced to set anyone free.

Unions seek ruling on state workers

Lansing State Journal Online, February 20, 2013

Several state employee unions are asking the Michigan Court of Appeals to formally declare that new right-to-work laws do not apply to the state’s 34,500 unionized workers.

The lawsuit filed Feb. 14 is the latest in a stream of challenges against Michigan’s new labor laws, which apply to contracts entered into after March 27.

EDITORIAL: CMU has no choice but to abide by right-to-work laws

Central Michigan Life, February 22, 2013

While many opposed when Gov. Rick Snyder’s right-to-work laws swept the Capitol, this Editorial Board ultimately agrees with what the law is striving for.

For years, unions have been able to secure larger contracts and bigger pensions for their workers – something they should be proud of. If you can get, take it.

Texas Experiences Meteoric Rise Of Relocation Inquiries From California Companies

Forbes, February 21, 2013

Just last week Governor Perry met with 200 Golden State business owners, and two weeks ago he purchased $24,000 in radio ads intended to lure entrepreneurs with lower individual taxes and a business-friendly climate. The 30-second spots tout Texas’ “zero income tax, low overall tax burden, sensible regulations and fair tax system.” The targeted campaign and face-to-face marketing efforts appear to be paying off… in spades.