Posts Tagged ‘California’

[original post 2/1/2010]

Ten minutes prior to the start of a December 15th, 2009 board meeting of the Riverside Community College District in California, board members are handed a 52-page document filled with millions of dollars in projects to be funded by the district’s taxpayers, who themselves are struggling under the state’s 12.4% unemployment rate.  The document, a draft Project Labor Agreement (PLA), will commit long-term construction and ancillary projects for the next several years to labor unions.

At least twenty-three members of the public, many of them local private business owners who oppose the PLA, have attended to publicly comment on the proposal.  Two of the board members have never even seen the PLA prior to today, and have asked for a special session to review it.  Despite opposition from the public, and the concern voiced by those two board members, the remaining three board members have moved that the Board of Trustees authorize Chancellor Greg Gray to negotiate the final PLA with the Riverside and San Bernardino Building and Construction Trade Councils. Board Trustees Virginia Blumenthal and Janet Green dissented.

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So, without adequate time for all to review the draft, without any backup analysis provided to justify the use of up to $350,000,000 in Measure C taxpayer funds, without giving the public reasonable time to voice their opinions, and with an unemployment rate of over 12% when non-union workers are in even greater need of jobs than union workers…why would three of Riverside’s five board members vote to move forward with a final negotiation anyway? Why the rush? Residents and business owners in Riverside are wondering the same thing, and hope to have the chance to weigh in before the PLA’s final draft is signed.

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[original post 1/28/2010]

United Auto Workers (UAW) union rank and file members shout down their own UAW leadership in a heated meeting on January 24th, as their UAW leader loses it at the podium.  Sunday’s meeting in California made last summer’s Town Halls look like a family picnic, after a few choice words from their UAW leader spurred the crowd of rank and file members to erupt in screaming and chaos.  At one point,  another attendee tries to reason with the crowd, pleading “we have women and children in here that are scared.”

WARNING: Strong language, angry-town-hall-mob-like-behavior

[ORIGINAL VIDEO NO LONGER AVAILABLE – replacement video below]

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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.

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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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