Posts Tagged ‘Andy Stern’

[original post 12/12/2010]

The woman known as the “Queen of Labor” is living up to her promise to focus on “building a sustaining progressive infrastructure.”  Anna Burger, former SEIU Secretary-Treasurer, has just joined the board of directors at the Center for American Progress Action Fund (CAP Action).

CAP Action is a sister organization to the liberal think tank, Center for American Progress.  While the Center for American Progress focuses on developing new policy ideas and on “critiquing the policy that stems from conservative values,”  CAP Action focuses on how to put those policies into action – by organizing liberal grassroots groups, labor unions and other progressive partners as advocates.

John Podesta, Chairman of the Board of Directors for CAP Action, offered the following statement in the organization’s December 9th press release:

“The Center for American Progress Action Fund is pleased to welcome Anna Burger to our Board of Directors. She has been a longtime friend of the Center for American Progress and CAP Action and we’re very happy that she has agreed to help us advance our mission by serving in this new capacity.

Anna Burger has been fighting hard for progressive ideas and policies for nearly 40 years, including the visionary leadership she has provided for the progressive movement over the past decade. We face numerous opportunities and many challenges over the next two years and look forward to Anna’s help in charting our course. As we continue to push for an economy built on a strong middle class that works for all Americans, Anna’s continued leadership and experience could not come at a more important time.”

In addition to her previous post at SEIU, Burger has held many prominent positions that have played significant roles in advancing the progressive movement, including:

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[original post 8/12/2010]

The Democracy Alliance is alive and well, and its Vice-Chair is about to be born again.

Today, the “Queen of Labor”, SEIU Secretary-Treasurer and Chair of the Change to Win labor federation, Anna Burger, announced her retirement.

Anna Burger was defeated by current SEIU President Mary Kay Henry when she ran against Henry for the spot vacated by outgoing President Andy Stern.  Despite that loss, Burger had insisted that she’d be staying on as Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU.  Instead, she will be replaced as the head of Change to Win by United Food and Commercial Workers president, Joe Hansen.  Henry is likely to appoint one of her own insiders as SEIU Secretary-Treasurer, a practice that was already causing tension between Burger and the new guard of SEIU (even though both guards are not all that different from one another).

Burger’s departure marks not just the end of an era for SEIU, but more importantly it’s indicative of a new era for the Progressive movement.

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[original post 7/24/2010]

Andy Stern has just gained yet another job.  Earlier this month, Stern also accepted a position on the Board of Directors for SIGA, a producer of anti-viral and biological warfare defense products.

But this job seems to have some policy teeth, with a think-tank title akin to Media Matters or the Center for American Progress, and it comes with perhaps some welcome company as well.

andy-stern-091231

From The San Francisco Chronicle:

Andy Stern, former president of the Service Employees International Union, is joining Georgetown University’s public policy school as a research fellow.

Stern, 59, retired in May after building his union into one of the largest in the labor movement and increasing his own influence with President Barack Obama and Democratic lawmakers.

Stern will coordinate research at Washington-based Georgetown on wage reform, labor policy and retirement security, according to an announcement on the school’s website.

Stern of course maintains his position as an adviser on Obama’s deficit-reduction commission, a post to which Obama appointed him in February of this year.

This announcement comes only weeks after the announcement that Ed Montgomery, who has been serving in the White House as both a member of President Obama’s Task Force on the Auto Industry and as the Director of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers, will leave the Obama administration to take over as Dean of Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute.  As very active leaders in the labor movement, both Mr. Montgomery and Andy Stern certainly know one another, and have shared visits at the White House for such activities as Obama’s White House Forum on Jobs and Economic Growth.

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stern-dunn-corzine

An April 30th Press Release issued by Leading Authorities, Inc., announces Andy Stern’s latest move:

“Leading Authorities, Inc. has signed Andrew (Andy) L. Stern, the former president of the 2.2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the fastest-growing union in North America. Stern turned SEIU into a powerful political force, and Stern and SEIU were widely credited for helping elect Barack Obama in 2008.

“We are extremely proud and privileged to be representing Andy Stern,” said Leading Authorities founder and CEO Mark French. “He is a major force in Washington politics. He transformed the labor movement, raised huge sums for President Obama’s election, and exerted monumental influence on the health care debate. Everyone at LAI is thrilled to be working with Andy.”   The release goes on to state,  “Stern will be addressing audiences about politics and issues such as fiscal policy, entitlements, immigration, healthcare, and the future of the labor movement.  He will speak independently, and also be matched with leading Republican thinkers.”

About the company:

Leading Authorities, Inc. is one of the nation’s most progressive event design firms as well as a renowned lecture agency and production house. LAI represents thought leaders in business, politics and contemporary life as well as nationally-recognized entertainment acts. Our award-winning video and production departments provide professionally managed events and cutting-edge media products. Our experiential event design experts conduct workshops to improve attendance, engagement, and return on investment. With tools such as our Strategic Event Evaluation and our Event Design Workshops, Leading Authorities is setting the standard in customized, fully integrated event design.”

Aw, Andy’s got himself an agent.  Show him the money.

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[original post 4/24/2010]

“After a great amount of my own thought, hearing opinions from many of you, and holding them up against my own criteria—I recommend that Anna Burger not only temporarily—but then permanently—become the 10th President and first woman to lead our union.”

henry-burger

That’s what outgoing SEIU President Andy Stern requested in his April 16th letter to the International Executive Board of SEIU, as he named Anna Burger as his preferred successor.

But locals from New York, Los Angeles, Oregon, and Washington State, as well as Canada, all lined up behind Mary Kay Henry tonight to commit their votes.  According to Politico’s Ben Smith,

“It’s done,” an SEIU insider emailed moments ago.

Tonight’s development comes only days after Anna Burger’s plea to the International Executive Board:

“During my 38 years in SEIU, I’ve held every position but one and now I’m asking for your support… to be the next International President.”

However, building tensions between locals across the country that saw Stern as a divisive figure, too politically entrenched and connected to the DC complex, have left the union itself divided.  Some have seen Mary Kay Henry as a more uniting force that might break the national union away from the chains of the DC operations and bring the power of the locals back to the members again and keep the peace amongst other locals. Others (including me) speculate that she’ll infuse new life into those very DC operations and could possibly even accelerate some activities; she apparently has fewer enemies than Stern or Burger did.  As Politico reports,

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[original post 4/12/2010]

stern

According to Ben Smith of Politico, Andy Stern, longtime President of the Service Employees International Union, is rumored to be resigning from his position. From the Politico post:

Service Employees International Union President Andrew Stern, one of America’s most prominent labor leaders, is set to resign, according to a member of the union’s board and another SEIU official.

The President of an SEIU local based in Seattle, Diane Sosne, broke the news to her staffers at 11:35 this morning, local time.

“Last night I received confirmation that Andy Stern is resigning as President of SEIU. He has not yet made a public announcement; we will share the details as we become aware of them,” Sosne wrote in an email obtained by POLITICO.

Sosne offered no explanation for the move, but another SEIU official speculated that Stern had finally tired of the draining job.

Read the entire Politico post here.

Hmmmm…I’d speculate differently. Here are my top guesses:

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[original post 3/9/2010]

As a gloomy, snowy February came to a close in the nation’s capital, so did the most recent circus attraction on Capitol Hill.  Several days of congressional hearings on the Toyota recalls didn’t exactly deliver many more facts for Americans but they did leave behind a plethora of speculation and opinion to feast upon.  While the saga now known as GasPedalGate flailed around quietly for several years, it’s suddenly taken center stage and today plays out like a bad made-for-TV-movie, complete with its villain, its victims, and most telling, a very long list of opportunists.

To see the full picture, the story begins in California with the history of General Motors and the United Auto Workers in the 1980’s, and GM’s rescue by Toyota through a little venture called NUMMI.  Today, in 2010, the NUMMI chapter nears its close.  But before it does, the Fremont, California plant and its rank and file workers will serve as unwilling pawns in what could turn out to be an orchestrated blueprint for incapacitating the strongest competitor to Government Motors and one of the most significant threats to labor unions here and around the globe.

Today’s rendition has been so manipulated and so propagandized, the facts have all but been removed from the storyline.  The bread crumb trail of truth has been trampled upon and so broadly scattered about, the trail is almost beyond the point of recognition.

The story that emerges is the collusion of forces in Big Labor, Big Government, Big Journalism, Big Litigators and Big Progressive Philanthropy.  And no, I’m not talking Breitbart sites.

The History of NUMMI

When a bankrupt and bailed out General Motors officially announced in June 2009 that it would be pulling out of its joint venture with Toyota, it marked the end of another era.

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[original post 2/13/2010]

In the wake of yesterday’s terrible tragedy outside of Vancouver at the Whistler Sliding Center, where Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili sadly lost his life, safety is on the minds of many.  Only hours before the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, the 21-year old lost control of his sled at 88mph and was catapulted over the track wall into a steel support column.  All throughout the week, coaches, commentators, and even other Olympians have questioned the safety of the track, as nearly a dozen other athletes have also crashed during practice runs, including a Romanian women’s slider who was knocked unconscious and defending Olympic luge champion Armin Zoeggeler of Italy.

The President of the World Luge Federation said the track is too fast and thinks it is a planning mistake, while Australian luger Hannah Campbell-Pegg questioned whether athletes were being treated as “crash test dummies“.  The shocking footage of the accident was replayed all throughout the day and evening yesterday, leaving horrified viewers focused on discussion about the safety of the track.

But in all of this shock, horror and sadness over the tragic death of an athlete in his prime and the dangers of the track on which he lost his young life, what has the SEIU focused on?

Food safety. (Translated =  unionizing)

seiu-PR021210

Reports of the horrible accident in Vancouver began surfacing in the press as early as 12:30 pm EST  Friday.  Yet, the SEIU still felt their unionization Food Safety concerns were so paramount that they went ahead and issued a press release anyway, after 5:00 pm EST:

PRESS RELEASE:  Healthcare Union Raises Concerns Over Safety Of Food to be Served to Olympic Athletes at Vancouver Olympics

“Sodexo is providing catering services for athletes during this key moment in their sporting careers, and we’re concerned about the food they will be providing,” charged the SEIU in Friday’s press release.

It’s not as though the SEIU could not have known about the tragedy  – the story had been broadcast all over the news for at least five hours before SEIU pushed out its attack.  If they didn’t know, then they’re even more disconnected from reality than we thought they were.

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[original post 1/27/2010]

We saw their fury throughout 2009:  “Capitalism is Dead”, “Kill the Corporation”, “Bust Up Big Banks”, “Greed Kills”, “Bank of America, Bad for America”.  The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) led an all-out assault on Wall Street – and on capitalism and corporations – coining words and phrases that have since become common staples in the vocabulary of the bank-bashing craze.  That fury hit a fever pitch last March when word of the AIG bonuses went public.  It was the SEIU out in front of the protests, at AIG offices, and bussing protestors to the homes of AIG executives.

AIG_Rally_AndyStern_March19

The months that followed saw more of the same.  In April, SEIU hailed the ousting of General Motors CEO Rick Wagoner.  That same week, it stepped up its battleplan with the Mother of all Corporate Campaigns against Ken Lewis, Bank of America CEO and Chairman – complete with videos, rolling billboards, smear sites, petition drives, letter campaigns, media blitzes and more, while it placed equal attention on Bank of America, forcing the company to respond with a $40 million image boosting campaign of television and print ads.

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[original post 1/2/2010]

The current state of the economy has placed a large burden on private business, especially on small businesses and the self-employed. Subscribing to a Keynesian tenet of financing debt and increasing government spending to boost output, lawmakers are repeatedly giving themselves cover for splurging.  After the first bailouts came the massive $787 billion stimulus bill, an urgent remedy that Congress and the White House insisted was all about “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs.”

And as spending has increased, so has the size of the public employment sector. Meanwhile, the private sector will soon be close to earning a coveted placement on the endangered species list.

private-VS-public1

As the union leaders’ plundering of the private sector has continued, this doesn’t mean that they have abandoned unionizing private sector workers altogether.  In fact, while the number of private sector jobs overall is down, the number of unionized private sector jobs is trending upward, right alongside the public sector growth.

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