Monday wrap

Ugly, anti-social justice experiment ends ... Want to know Obama’s judicial agenda? Just take a look at the American Constitution Society’s (ACS) agenda. If you haven’t heard of the ACS, you probably were just getting familiar with their conservative counterpart, the Federalist Society. The Federalist Society -- an association of conservative and libertarian lawyers -- grew so successful since their founding in 1982 that by 2001, the beginning of the conservative legal movement’s peak in influence, liberals realized they needed a counterpart. Enter the American Constitution Society (a George Soros-funded organization). (humanevents.com)

Dems cultivate small business ... If the unions and federal bureaucrats can dictate wages and benefits, small business owners will have to decide whether they can afford to grow, add jobs or even stay in business. Under card check, a repair shop is as vulnerable as a manufacturing plant. Men and women struggling to make payroll, provide insurance for their workers, put gas in their fleet or advertise their goods and services will become union targets. If Big Labor and some members of Congress have their way, these small businesses — and the people who work for them — would have unions shoved down their throats. In this increasingly tough financial climate, the last thing we need is a bill that will make life even tougher for small business owners, the backbone of the American economy. These entrepreneurs, who aren’t coming to Washington for a handout, should not be sacrificed so that unions can have their political spoils. (dailynews-record.com)

U.S. Leftists cheer Bam borrow-and-spend-a-palooza ... Obama's team will still be able to call on Washington's partisan political machinery if necessary. Brad Woodhouse, who was a senior Democratic Party strategist in the campaign, has assembled a group of 25 organizations — including unions like the Service Employees International Union and grass-roots groups like MoveOn.org and ACORN — to build public and congressional support for Obama's economic package. Woodhouse said the group was raising money for television ads that will pressure local lawmakers to support the plan. He said he had consulted with several of Obama's senior strategists. (seattletimes.nwsource.com)

Questions dog Bam ... To obtain a driver's license, one has to provide some proof of citizenship -- so why did you not comply as a presidential candidate? Surely you can influence the state of Hawaii to release your original birth certificate for public inspection, so this lingering question can be put to rest before your inauguration. We know that you hold constitutional rule of law in contempt, but in the unlikely event that it is revealed sometime after your inauguration that you are not a natural-born citizen, we would be faced with a serious constitutional crisis. When do you plan to release your original birth certificate? Moving on, given your strange childhood and broken family (similar to that of Bill Clinton, the last unmitigated narcissist to occupy the White House), you indicated that your primary childhood mentor was a communist, Frank Marshall Davis. (enterstageright.com)

Huge union-backed Ponzi scheme exposed

Newhouse tree-killer shocked, shocked by epidemic of Pay-to-Play corruption ... "Pay-to-play in the municipal bond market is epidemic." If that is the case, then it seems unlikely that Oregon's public officials and their bond advisers can, or should, escape scrutiny. Indeed, Oregon's new attorney general John Kroger, needs to get up to speed ASAP on the federal probe, as do other public officials here. The municipal bond business is at the very heart of public finance at almost all levels. It is vital that its participants be both vigilant on the public's behalf and be squeaky clean as to their own conduct. (oregonlive.com)

Congressional Pay-to-Play: Enact forced-labor unionism ... For more than a decade, Congress has been considering but not passing something called the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act. This chummy-sounding piece of legislation would guarantee police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians the right to form unions that can engage in collective bargaining with their public employers. For these workers, state prohibitions against collective bargaining, like North Carolina's, would no longer apply. Last year, the legislation failed only because of a Republican-led Senate filibuster backed by a promise of a presidential veto. Odds are the same won't happen this year, and the legislation will pass ... Over the last decade, Democratic candidates in the state have increasingly tapped union political action committees for donations. The unions, from the AFL-CIO to the Service Employees Union International, which affiliated with the State Employees Association of North Carolina, have become more active here. It's no secret what the unions want: collective bargaining rights for public employees, giving the unions a new pool of workers to recruit and organize. (salisburypost.com)

House Dems, Trial Bar quietly advance corrupt Pay-to-Play scheme ... The House on Friday passed two measures that, unless they are killed or delayed by a filibuster, will hurt seriously businesses, consumers, and workers alike. The bills will also inflict serious damage on an already reeling economy. The offending measures are the “Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act” and the “Paycheck Fairness Act.” The first would effectively remove almost all statutes of limitations on claims of wage discrimination, meaning that claims could be filed decades after alleged offenses. The second would remove all limits on both compensatory and punitive damage awards under the Equal Pay Act, enabling trial lawyers to shake down businesses for awards many times as expensive as the wages in dispute. Quite simply, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her Democratic colleagues are blatantly encouraging their trial lawyer buddies to sue any business any time for any amount. (dcexaminer.com)

Another corrupt union-backed Dem exposed ... Mayor Sheila Dixon got indicted today on twelve felony counts, including perjury, theft, and misconduct in office. Maryland state prosecutors accused the Baltimore Democrat of a particularly heinous theft of donated gift cards intended for the poor: ... Dixon never mentioned the gift cards on her disclosure statements. Since those get signed under oath, her signatures on those forms with the omissions of the cards would amount to perjury. That would almost certainly bring serious prison time, if Dixon gets convicted — and it’s hard to imagine that she will get much sympathy from a jury after stealing gift cards from the poor. For Name That Party aficianados, the Washington Post does indeed mention that Dixon is a Democrat, in the sixth paragraph of the story. (hotair.com)

Virginia Leftists protest against constitutional protection for worker-choice ... "The General Assembly, and the government in general, needs to be accountable to the people, the taxpayers and the people who pay their paychecks," said Breanne Armbrust of Richmond Jobs with Justice. Armbrust's group, along with the Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality, organized yesterday's meeting ... Armbrust said volunteers are energized by the November election results. Among the bills they will target is one that proposes adding a right-to-work clause to the state constitution. "There is already a state statute that makes Virginia a right-to-work state," Armbrust said. "It's just another attack on workers and labor is the way we see it." (timesdispatch.com)

U.S. burdened by UAW ... American consumers have slowly come to realize that when it comes to cars, all that glitters is not gold. They are finally fed up. The Big 3 auto sales figures attest to that fact. Anyone who has read Consumer Reports magazines over the last 10 or 15 years can see why there are poor sales. Ford, GM and Chrysler vehicles have pathetic showings in reliability, body integrity and performance compared with stellar marks for Honda, Toyota, Nissan and many other imports that are not burdened with the union. (dailyitem.com)

California power-grab exposes SEIU metastasis ... She said SEIU has been consolidating employees who do the same job into one local per state since 1996 ... Some California healthcare workers have fought the merger, particularly members of UHW, which will lose 65,000 people -- about half its members -- to the new group. UHW leaders have called the move undemocratic. They had called for a boycott of a December advisory vote by SEIU that asked members whether they wanted to merge all healthcare workers or only long-term care workers into a single California local. Less than one in 10 of the roughly 300,000 members polled responded, but those who did sided overwhelmingly with the more limited merger. UHW said 125,000 members of the three affected locals signed petitions and cards indicating they would boycott the vote. On Friday, UHW officials sent a letter to SEIU saying that many UHW members want to disaffiliate with SEIU and that the international is required to give them a vote under its constitution. "There is widespread and profound opposition within our membership to any efforts to dismember our local union or take away its rights of democratic governance," read a letter signed by 72 members of UHW's leadership. (latimes.com)

Union-backed fraud group wants your sprogs early ... Project ACORN Inc. is accepting applications for families seeking financial assistance for preschool for the fall 2009 academic school year. The deadline for applications is the end of February. Applications after that date will be considered for its wait list. The child must be 3 or 4 years old on Oct. 1, 2009. (dailyrecord.com)

Unionist smacks down Card-Check as defective ... Gould favors holding elections but speeding them up to cut down on long anti-union campaigns. "I don't think card check is a deliberative process," Gould said. "We're substituting one imperfect process for another." Card check critics say it can lead to workers being pressured by other workers to join the union. "The problem of having no secret ballot is intimidation," said Richard Epstein, a law professor at the University of Chicago. Epstein said card check legislation is unnecessary because the current law is working. He said National Labor Relations Board data shows that 38 days was the median time between when a petition for an election was filed and when an election occurred, and 93 percent of all elections occurred within 56 days. And deciding a first contract through binding arbitration, Epstein said, is unconstitutional. By imposing contract terms, a company's private property could be effectively taken without just compensation, he said. (chicagotribune.com)

Job-killing, Pay-to-Play Congress blinded by union cash ... The Employee Free Choice Act actually would take away employees' choices by essentially forcing them to unionize. Despite the claims of this legislation's advocates, it is a relatively simple matter to form a union under current law. If there is authentic employee support for unionizing, then organizers need only win a majority of votes in a private balloting process. As Americans, we know that the right to a secret ballot is a cornerstone of a democratic society. Any proposal to deny voters a secret ballot in presidential, congressional or local elections would be considered ludicrous. So why should workers voting on their fates in the workplace be denied the same fundamental right? Once this card-check procedure puts a union in place, mandatory dues would be deducted from workers' paychecks. Surely, middle-class families can't afford to lose more of their hard-earned income against their will. The law also would invite more of the kind of government overreaching we have seen in Detroit. For instance, it calls for government arbitrators to resolve contracts without votes by workers. That's one of several ways in which our communities would be increasingly manipulated by outsiders under this legislation. With the lack of accountability that card check would bring about, directives would come top-down from national and international labor unions. Local unions could be subsumed by their national headquarters, which may be ignorant of local economic conditions, regional growth, or job creation. The card-check legislation takes what the private sector does best — job creation — and puts it in the hands of people who have never created a single job. Jobs aren't created by government arbitrators or union bosses; they're created by the small businesses and local entrepreneurs who would be hit hardest by this law. Even though most Americans — and even a majority of union members — think fair workplace elections conducted by secret ballot are preferable to card check, Congress doesn't seem to be listening. And given the economic crisis, this is precisely the wrong time to be sacrificing the interests of American businesses and workers. (pottstownmercury.com)

Ailing N.C. tree-killer runs interference for jumbo fat-cat gov't union ... Chris Chafe gets a chuckle from the puns. Yes, his name is Chafe and he's a labor organizer, a workers advocate who can rub management the wrong way. But mild-mannered, good-humored and politically shrewd are better words for the work style of the executive director of Change To Win, an alliance of seven unions with 6 million members. "He is nice, low-key," says Anna Burger, the national labor leader who helped form the powerful 3-year-old federation, which includes the Teamsters and Service Employees International Union. "For people who aren't from the South, there's sort of an assumption that people here are conservative," Chafe said. "But if you've lived here, you know that's not true, that there's always been a history of progressives going up against mill owners." Chafe was born in New York City, but he grew up in Chapel Hill when it was known as fertile ground for politically progressive ideas and left-wing politics. (newsobserver.com)

Union-backed fraud group helps bury Democracy

International Collectivism

Palestinian historian: Chávez forever advances Democracy ... The historical record of the past decade and the present realities in Venezuela today demonstrate that democratic principles and practices have deepened and extended following each election and re-election of Hugo Chávez. For example: 1. The mass media are much more diverse; access is more equal and there is a greater variety of competing socio-economic paradigms under debate. 2. Civil society contains a greater number of free and independent competing and organized social classes than ever in the history of Venezuela. Between 1999-2009 competing neighborhood groups with diverse social perspectives have flourished. 3. Electoral campaigns and procedures are less subject state corruption, intervention and violent manipulation than ever before. 4. Citizen participation and defense of democratic freedoms was never more widespread and intense as was witnessed by the massive popular mobilization defeating the US-oligarchy-military coup of April 2002, and the restoration of the elected President (Chávez), the Congress and the Venezuelan constitution. 5. The nationalization of foreign and oligarchy controlled strategic enterprises has made key economic enterprises subject to legislative and executive oversight by elected public representatives. 6. The re-election of President Chávez has resulted in politics which lower socio-economic inequalities, increased social expenditures for the poor, the working class and peasantry thus increasing their stake in democratic institutions, their interest in electoral campaigns and provided them with greater time and resources to participate in social and political organizations. (palestinechronicle.com)

U.N. observes Maoists reshaping Nepal ... The attack on Devkota is not an isolated one. In October 2008, two more Youth Force cadres were abducted by YCL members and a month later, their bodies were found buried near a stream. One of the worst blows to the Maoists’ image of a reformed parliamentary party came in May, when protests and a general strike paralyzed Kathmandu valley after a former Maoist confidant was killed. Ram Hari Shrestha, who had provided shelter and food to the Maoists during the civil war, was abducted from Kathmandu after a dispute over missing money, and beaten to death inside a PLA cantonment. Public outrage grew after media reports said PLA commander accused of murder had secretly met Maoist Defense Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa. The minister denied any such meeting, and the accused commander is still at large ... The growing violence and lawlessness by a party that professed to lay down arms has also attracted criticism from the UN, which is a party to the Himalayan republic’s fragile peace process. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who visited Nepal last year after the formation of the first Maoist government, expressed concern in the report he tabled before the Security Council this month. “The internal debate held during the national gathering [of the Maoists] and some public statements by Maoist leaders also resonated outside the party, giving rise to further questioning of the Maoists’ commitment to multi-party democracy and concern that the party has not abandoned its military past,” the UN chief said. He also mentioned that the “paramilitary” activities of the YCL continued to come under strong criticism from all other parties. (isn.ethz.ch)
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