So-called 'private sector' on federal endangered list ... The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Friday that America’s unemployment rate is the highest since 1983, but while most of the job losses have been in the private sector, public sector jobs – including jobs in government, education and health services – continued to increase. Experts conclude that the number of government jobs will continue to grow in the coming years. (cnsnews.com)
In case you missed it: The Union News weekend
Saturday: Will Atlas Shrug?
Sunday: D.C. job-killers prep surge in U.S. unemployment
New Prog Keynesians crush animal spirits ... ”Animal spirits,” said John Maynard Keynes, are the essential spring of capitalism. We depend on the animal spirits of investors, high earners and entrepreneurs for a growing economy. Keynes, a subtler analyst of market economies than the single-minded booster of high government spending that so-called Keynesian economists depict, knew whereof he spoke. People don't just respond in linear quantum jumps to the incentives and disincentives they perceive around them. They perk up when their animal spirits are aroused, and they slump down into inertia when they are not. Barack Obama's tax plans, announced in his budget message last week, threaten to depress the animal spirits that we depend on for economic recovery. Mr. Obama in his chosen city of Chicago always assumed the private sector would be eternally bounteous. As a community organizer following the formulas of Saul Alinsky, he assumed the political establishment would always be there and that, if you organized smartly enough, you could get a chunk out of it. When he decided that community organizing was small change and went into the politics business, he, like all Chicago politicians, assumed the private-sector economy would always be bounteous and that if you shook its members down and taxed them, you could always get a bigger chunk out of them. And it has mostly worked that way in Chicago. (washingtontimes.com)
• Summary of Saul Alinsky's 'Rules for Radicals'
• 'Rules for Radicals' at amazon.com
Good Government: Kent State allows AFSCME to deduct 'forced tribute' from non-members' paychecks ... Newly hired skilled trade workers at Kent State will be required to either become a union member or pay a fair share fee after 60 days of employment. Current non-union employees in food service, housekeeping, custodial service and building and grounds may soon be next. Under the new three-year contract between Kent State and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 153 (the union representing these workers), once the union reaches 50 percent plus one of total employee membership, the fair share clause will go into effect. Schuckert said the fair share agreement was important because it will strengthen the union at its next negotiation. The union will next focus on pay equalization. The terms of the contract will be implemented immediately, and the salary increase will be retroactive to Oct. 1, 2008. Negotiations between the university and AFSCME began last summer. (kentnewsnet.com)
Dangerous brew: Obama, Dems blend nationalism, socialism ... Shortly after the recent election, it was said Democrats waged a 21st century campaign while the Republican campaign was a 19th century operation. This is a flawed observation; millions of voters know little of either. The Democratic campaign was invented in Europe around 1915 to 1940, a blend of two ideologies. Find a person who speaks well, prop him up and make him attractive using camera angles, choreographed mannerisms and lighting. Schedule gatherings, many outdoors and in large venues such as stadiums, with clever backdrops. Spare no expense. When you need help to sway opinion, call in a 21st century, taxpayer-funded organization like ACORN to "find" votes, or spread a thought or idea through neighborhoods. Drill into the populace how unfairly they have been treated, as with job losses and unfair mortgage practices. We're told we must infuse lots of money into the economy to get things going and fix unfairnesses -- now; no time to read the fine print. Enact legislation to borrow billions of taxpayer dollars we don't have and redistribute it. Make unemployment of 6 percent sound abysmal, saying nothing of the other 94 percent of Americans who work. Once in power, infuse our borrowed billions into businesses at every opportunity, then dictate what can and cannot be done with them. Mount a campaign against your opponents and critics using news media to advance the agenda. Tell legislators not to listen to Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity or Glen Beck. Now we have it: Welcome to the National Socialist Democratic Party. (delmarvanow.com)
Dems target small business for workplace kickbacks ... With "card check" top of mind, some opponents have dug up an old National Labor Relations Board regulation and claimed that many small businesses are exempt from union activity. That’s not necessarily true. In a 1959 ruling, the NLRB established that it would have jurisdiction only over private companies doing business across state lines and meeting certain minimum sales levels: $500,000 for retail and $50,000 for nonretail (though certain industries have special limits). Those figures remain the same today. But that doesn’t mean employees at those companies can’t organize, or protest and attempt to negotiate better working conditions. It does mean, however, that in doing so, they would be on their own, with no NLRB protection against unfair labor practices. That said, "It’s actually very easy for us to assert jurisdiction over employers because interstate commerce doesn’t have to be direct," says Gail Moran, assistant to the regional director for the NLRB in Chicago. It could be argued, for instance, that a local restaurant doing business with a cross-state food supplier is engaged indirectly in interstate commerce. Which is why, in practice, very few employers are exempt, says Jules Crystal, a former NLRB trial attorney who now represents companies as a partner at Bryan Cave in Chicago. (workforce.com)
Weekend activism: Community organizers rally Anti-Socialists across U.S. ... The tax-paying rebels are not going away.
... 15,000 rally in Fullerton, CA:
... In Green Bay, Wisconsin, protesters gathered for a Tea Party at Titletown Brewing. Reader David has more at Pork Revolution:
In Harrisburg, PA:
In Olathe, KS:
In Lafayette, LA:
How do you spell 'Union Thug'?
DINO D.C. organizers set to punish U.S. employers ... After spending tens of millions to elect Democrats, the country’s major unions — the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, SEIU and the American Federation of Teachers — want party leaders to return the favor by delivering on card check. In recent days, President Barack Obama has taken pains to reiterate his support, even as he pushes controversial multitrillion-dollar plans that will prompt their own epic legislative battles. Vice President Joe Biden wasn’t exactly restrained in remarks to an AFL-CIO gathering in Miami last Thursday, saying, “You all brought me to the dance a long time ago, and it’s time we start dancing.” The measure would allow organizers to unionize a shop if a majority of employees sign a petition, bypassing the need for an open election. (news.yahoo.com)
Thanks, Union Bosses!
DINO thugs trample workplace rights to hike union dues take ... Organized labor pumped tens of millions of dollars into Democrat coffers during the 2008 elections. What were unions hoping to get for their money? The Employee Free Choice Act signed into law. Do you know what this legislation would do? It would strip away the right of 140 million U.S. workers to a federally supervised private-ballot election when deciding whether to unionize. It would replace private ballots with a process called "card check." Union organizers would only have to gather signed authorization cards from a majority of workers to claim union representation. Without private ballots, workers who were intimidated or coerced into signing authorization cards would not have the ability to change their votes in private. With card check, workers' votes would be made known to the employer, union organizers and co-workers. There would be no free choice. Call your representatives in Washington. Tell them to oppose the Employee Free Choice Act. (pittsburghlive.com)
Labor-state unionists: Drag 'em down to our level ... It has been suggested more than once lately that Michigan's problems would be less severe if other states had the sort of strong unions we have here. This is nothing more than wishful thinking that impedes real solutions. We cannot, and should not, expect other states — especially those not as hard hit by current economic conditions — to embrace unions at the expense of productivity and competitiveness. In the Jan. 26 Detroit Free Press, Gary Chiasson, professor of industrial relations at Clark University in Massachusetts, speculated that if the Employee Free Choice Act were passed, unions would focus on low-unionization states such as South Carolina, Alabama and Texas, making those states less attractive. Chiasson concludes that "it is in Michigan's interest that Alabama become more unionized." Neither professor can bring himself to say it directly, but it's hard to avoid the implication that they both see unions as a drag on the state's economy. Their solution is straightforward: drag everyone else down to our level. (mackinac.org)
Unionist DINO smacked down over workplace ignorance ... U.S. Rep. Betsy Markey is making a major misstep in her decision to co-sponsor the Employee Free Choice Act. Markey and President Barack Obama insist that this legislation would not harm business, but create more sustainable wages and jobs for middle-class workers. But we respectfully disagree that expanding unions is the route to improving our economy. In fact, it's likely to create a more contentious atmosphere. (coloradoan.com)
Out-of-state union cash overwhelms Virginia voters ... Organized labor has long gotten a cold reception in Virginia, but national unions are making an unprecedented push to expand their presence in the state, contributing huge sums to Democratic candidates and attempting to organize government employees as layoffs loom. The unions have played a major role in local races, including making a $50,000 contribution to Fairfax County Supervisor Sharon Bulova's campaign for board chairman. And they are preparing to dedicate significant resources to this year's hotly contested campaign for governor. Last fall, three large labor unions wrote separate six-figure checks to the Virginia Democratic Party, among the largest contributions to the party in at least a dozen years. Labor donations accounted for about half of the $1.3 million the state Democratic Party collected between July 1 and Dec. 31. "If you are going to spend that much money on campaigns, you are not trying to maintain the status quo," said Del. Christopher B. Saxman (R-Staunton). (washingtonpost.com)
Union operative to be Virginia's next Gov ... Terry McAuliffe’s bid to be Virginia’s next governor is a product of sharp political timing. The Virginia electorate, swelling with new independent and liberal-minded residents of the D.C. suburbs, has rejected Republican after Republican in statewide races. And the incumbent governor, Tim Kaine, is set to make his constitutionally mandated exit next year with no obvious Democratic successor. The presumptive Republican nominee, former Virginia Attorney General Robert McDonnell, may have historical precedent on his side; Virginia hasn’t elected a governor of the sitting president’s party in three decades. But these days, Old Dominion voters don’t seem to hold much stock in precedent, after having just cast their electoral votes for a Democratic president for the first time in 44 years. McAuliffe has never held public office. (dcexaminer.com)
Purple: The New Green ... The rumor is that SEIU and UNITE have created a new entity they're calling "Workers United", and that UNITE staff resigned en masse today to get on the payroll of W.U., which is funded by SEIU. Would sure explain the existence, the design, and the content of this ...
Union-backed fraud group uses typical intimidation tactics to curb economic justice ... It's no secret that the East Bay city of Pittsburg would like to attract businesses along its industrial waterfront. However, with a weak economy, there is little prospect of attracting any new firms in the near future. Nor is there space or plans for a major expansion. Still, from time to time, the city takes a look at possible prospects. Brad Nail, Pittsburg's economic development director, said he is always fishing for potential businesses along the waterfront and elsewhere in the city. Often such "fishing expeditions" include private talks with firms that may be interested in coming to Pittsburg. When a concrete proposal is put together, then the public process begins. There is no way Pittsburg is going to make a deal with a new business without considerable public comment and an extensive environmental review process, as has been the case in the past. However, ACORN, an advocacy group, is not satisfied. ACORN cites talks that city officials had with Pasha Group, a transportation and logistics firm, about creating a marine terminal that could import and export automobiles. Nail explained that the city was nowhere near a deal with Pasha. City Manager Marc Grisham said such an expanded port operation was not feasible at this time, and would be too close to residents and create traffic problems. In other words, a deal between Pasha and Pittsburg never came anywhere near the point of serious negotiations. That's why there was no public notification. Instead of working with city officials, ACORN chose to mail out scare fliers to certain neighborhoods with pictures of worst-case scenarios, asking residents: "Could your neighborhood be torn down to make room for (the port)?" Asking for as much transparency as possible from city officials is a legitimate request, but ACORN needs to end its scare tactics and work in a more positive fashion with city residents and leaders. Frightening Pittsburg residents with misleading information certainly diminishes ACORN's credibility and usefulness as a public advocate. (contracostatimes.com)
Latin leader adds dangerous nationalism to socialist ideology ... President Hugo Chávez urged his followers to secure Socialism in Venezuela by creating a grass-root National Front, strengthening the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) and seeking unity with other allied organizations. The new campaign named Third Historic Cycle of the Socialist Bolivarian Revolution, will last a decade, until Feb. 2019, marking the 200th anniversary of the birth of National Hero Simon Bolivar. Chávez' current term will end in 2012, but he can seek endless reelection after winning a recent referedum. The National Front will deal with social missions and programs being implemented by his government, the president announced on his Sunday column "Chávez Lines" published in several newspapers. According to Chávez, youth, students, workers, farmers, natives, intellectuals, and women are a powerful revolutionary weapon. He also suggested to rename the so-called “Yes committees” set up for the referendum on endless reelection as "Socialist Committees". Chávez also announced the six-million-affiliates PSUV will hold a special congress on Aug-Sep this year. (plenglish.com)
Socialist financiers match fraud for fraud ... Venezuela’s negotiations with Spain’s Banco Santander SA over the nationalization of its local unit haven’t reached a “conclusion,” Finance Minister Ali Rodriguez said. The finance minister said last month it was possible the government may decide not to take over Santander’s Banco de Venezuela. “We’ve had an excellent relationship with Santander representatives,” he said today in an interview broadcast on the Televen network. “It’s been advancing, but we haven’t reached a conclusion.” President Hugo Chávez announced plans to nationalize Banco de Venezuela last July. The South American country is eliminating all unnecessary spending this year after prices for crude oil, the country’s top export, plunged 68.6 percent since July, Rodriguez said today. The government plans to complete an auction this month of Stanford Bank SA Banco Comercial, the bank owned by R. Allen Stanford, who has been accused of fraud in the U.S., Rodriguez said. Venezuela took over the local bank last month. (bloomberg.com)
Latin socialist to seize Coca-Cola property ... President Hugo Chávez on Sunday gave Coca Cola, run here by Mexico's Grupo Femsa, two weeks' notice to get its delivery trucks off a parking lot on which he wants public housing built, AFP informed. "I am giving Coca Cola two weeks to get off those plots of land voluntarily," Chávez said on his weekly show "Alo, Presidente" on radio and television. The flat land -- in short supply in crowded and hilly Caracas -- is in the hardscrable Libertador neighborhood. Chavez wants government housing and a medical center built there. (focus-fen.net)
Chávez: It takes one to know one ... Hugo Chávez, the President of Venezuela, has described the ex Spanish Prime Minister, José María Aznar, as a ‘failed fascist’ for meeting in Madrid this weekend with the Venezuelan opposition. He said the opposition had no shame and were now under the orders of Aznar. The opposition, led by Julio Borges, is trying to draw up a road map against the ‘authoritarian regime’ of Chávez, and Aznar, who is now President of the right-wing think tank FAES, the Foundation for Analysis and Social Studies, gave his support. (typicallyspanish.com)