Saturday, March 21, 2009

crime of bein' hungry and poor

Following up on my previous post in re: Limbaugh as Fearless Leader, He Who Must Be Obeyed, we see this from a predictable Republican operative. Either he's too stupid to actually read, or, more likely, he has gotten the Limbaugh Daily Brief and memorized the lies:
"Since when is the secret ballot a basic tenet of democracy?" Teamsters President James Hoffa recently demanded. He callously dismissed this cornerstone of American self-government that helped emancipated slaves vote after the Civil War and has decided presidential elections since Grover Cleveland beat Benjamin Harrison in 1892.

Hoffa and other union bosses, egged on by Democrats from Capitol Hill to the White House, display world-class hypocrisy, violate international labor standards, and contradict their own sales pitch as they desperately promote "card-check" legislation to drive secret ballots from union-authorization elections.

Once a majority of workers at a labor-targeted institution signs cards showing interest in unionization, rather than trigger a secret-ballot election (as happens today), those cards automatically would impose union-monopoly representation on every worker, including those who never signed cards.

Imagine a candidate with a majority of voters' signatures on his qualifying petition. Suddenly, November's secret-ballot election is cancelled, and he instantly becomes congressman.

As one blogger says, the stupid, it burns. From the SEIU blog:
Corporate front groups' one-line attack on the Employee Free Choice Act is the false claim that it somehow eliminates the secret ballot option for workers to join unions. Although it's blatantly false and dishonest, desperate corporate interests continue to hammer that argument without shame.

But it seems one of their closest allies is finally willing to acknowledge the truth. In this morning's Wall Street Journal, the corporate-friendly editorial board admits:
"The bill doesn't remove the secret-ballot option from the National Labor Relations Act," wrote the WSJ.

There you have it. The Employee Free Choice Act "doesn't remove the secret ballot."

Think Progress has a good explanation:
CONSERVATIVE CANARD: To generate opposition to the EFCA, conservatives have been spouting the canard that the legislation will strip workers of their right to a secret ballot. Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN), who opposes EFCA, argued, "This act takes away the right to a secret ballot." In a similar vein, Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao writes today in the Wall Street Journal, "It is incredible that interest groups who say they are advocates for workers are striving to end workers' opportunity to have private union elections." In reality, the EFCA does not abolish elections. It merely shifts the balance of the playing field -- from one that is currently tilted overwhelmingly in favor of employers who dictate whether employees can organize, to a process that is instead employee-driven. "Under the proposed legislation, workers get to choose the union formation process -- elections or majority sign-up. What the Employee Free Choice Act does prevent is an employer manipulating the flawed system to influence the election outcome." The myths propagated by the right have prompted some Democrats, including Sens. Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), to withhold their support for the bill.

Malicious R's and stupid D's. Not helpful.