These articles seem to revel that we are witnessing the ramped use of Alinky’s Rules by this President, his administration and/or individuals/organizations connected to them –You Decide:
These are excerpts from this article:
“Chicago style politics, makes it to the Whitehouse…
Tom Lauria “One of my clients was directly threatened by the Whitehouse”
“Full force of the Whitehouse Press Corp would destroy his reputation”
If the Bush White House had engaged in anything similar to what’s being described here, there would be calls for impeachment.
Maybe there should be similar talk now. As it is, the establishment media will more than likely work very hard to ignore this.
It should not be ignored. What attorney Tom Lauria describes is nothing short of chilling.
Tom Lauria: “Let me tell you it’s no fund standing on this side of the fence opposing the President of the United States. In fact, let me just say, people have asked me who I represent, and that’s a moving target.
I can tell you for sure that I represent one less investor today than I represented yesterday.
One of my clients was directly threatened by the White House, and in essence compelled to withdraw its opposition to the deal under threat that the full force of the White House press corps would destroy its reputation if it continued to fight. That’s how hard it is to stand on this side of the fence.
**UPDATE**WHITEHOUSE SAYS THE STORY IS FALSE, FULL STORY HERE: http://hotairpundit.blogspot.com/2009/05/abcnews-white-house-denies-charge-by.html
These are pertinent excerpts from this blog:
“What do you expect this Whitehouse to say, “yeah, we threatened him“
blogs.abcnews.com Jake Tapper:
A leading bankruptcy attorney representing hedge funds and money managers told ABC News Saturday that Steve Rattner, the leader of the Obama administration’s Auto Industry Task Force, threatened one of the firms, an investment bank, that if it continued to oppose the administration’s Chrysler bankruptcy plan, the White House would use the White House press corps to destroy its reputation.
Thomas Lauria, Global Practice Head of the Financial Restructuring and Insolvency Group at White & Case, told ABC News that Rattner suggested to an official of the boutique investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners that officials of the Obama White House would embarrass the firm for opposing the Obama administration plan, which President Obama announced Thursday, and which requires creditors to accept roughly 29 cents on the dollar for an estimated $6.8 billion owed by Chrysler.
Lauria first told the story, without naming Rattner, to Frank Beckmann on Detroit’s WJR-AM radio. The White House now denies the allegations, claiming that there’s no evidence of it, “The charge is completely untrue,” said White House deputy press secretary Bill Burton, “and there’s obviously no evidence to suggest that this happened in any way.”
How much does the President care about the auto industry? Here’s Obama making a joke about putting money into the industry with 60 Minutes Steve Kroft, truly disgraceful…
60 Minutes Kroft To Joking Obama “Are You Punch Drunk?”
How Unions Will Manipulate Workers Using Card Check: Posted on The Heritage Foundation-On March 10, 2009:
These are pertinent excerpts from this article:
“Liberals are introducing the misnamed Employee Free Choice Act today on Capitol Hill. The legislation would effectively eliminate workers’ rights to a secret ballot vote on joining a union. Heritage’s James Sherk has done extensive research on card check, including a new paper that outlines why the bill would create government-run workplaces.
Last month at a Heritage event, former UFCW Local 700 Organizing Director Rian Wathen described how unions will creatively manipulate workers into signing union cards if EFCA takes away their right to a secret vote. Click here to see the actual card being used by unions in California that Wathen talks about in the video below.
Would you realize that by signing this pamphlet you legally decided to unionize your workplace?
Employee “No” Choice Act: Increasing the Fed’s Role, Again: Posted on The Heritage Foundation-On March 10, 2009:
These are pertinent excerpts from this article:
“Unions Rally against Democratic Elections:
- Card Check: The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) would replace secret ballot organizing elections with publicly signed union cards, allowing union organizers to deceive, harass, and threaten workers into signing these cards and thereby unionizing.
- Stripping Away Privacy and Freedom: A worker may vote “no” against a union behind a curtain but may be less courageous if pressured in public. This is why most union organizers currently don’t call for elections until between 60% and 75% of a shop notes interest, knowing that there will be drop off once the votes are tallied.
- Union Workers Oppose: A recent Zogby poll found that 71% of union members believe that the current private-ballot process is fair. A McLaughlin & Associates poll found that fully 74% of union members favor keeping the current system in place over replacing it with one that provides less privacy.
- Liberals Opposed It … in Mexico: In 2001, labor-friendly Members of Congress, including EFCA sponsors, pressed Mexico in a letter to increase its use of the secret ballot, saying it was “absolutely necessary in order to ensure that workers are not intimidated into voting for a union they might not otherwise choose.”
Card Check Creates Government-Run Workplaces:
- Collective Bargaining: Under current law, no contract takes effect until both workers believe they get a fair deal and management believes the contract will not bankrupt the firm. If negotiations end, the workers can strike or management can lock them out, but neither side must work under an unworkable contract.
- Putting the Power in Washington: Section 3 of EFCA gives government officials the power to impose contracts on workers and firms. After a union organizes a business, there would a short period of time for management to offer them an “acceptable” contract. If the union does not agree, the matter would be sent to a federal arbitration board.
- Bureaucrats in Charge of Your Workplace: Instead of mutual consent, the federal government would then impose working conditions on both employers and employees, whether they were workable or not, and these conditions would be binding on the business for two years until the negotiations are reopened.
- In Summary: So after the unions strong arm employees into their union, they would then have government-backed authority to tell business owners how to run their business, including wages and bonuses; employment levels; retirement and health care plans; business operations; promotions; assignments; subcontracting; and closure, sale, or merger of a business.
Increase Opportunities for Employees:
- There IS an Alternative: There is a better way to help workers earn more money. Unionized workers are not allowed to earn more than their union contract calls for, no matter how hard they work. Unions keep wages of above-average employees down so that workers will look to the union—instead of their own efforts—as the way to get ahead.
- Let Workers Earn More Money: By allowing employers to pay individual workers more than a collective bargaining agreement calls for, Congress would eliminate union wage ceilings and allow workers to earn more money and be rewarded for outstanding performance.
Don’t Kill Jobs: Unions reduce job opportunities in the economy. Conservative estimates show that EFCA would reduce employment opportunities by 765,000 potential jobs in the economy over the next seven years. Other studies estimate even greater effects.”
Employee Free Choice Act – Bullies Non-Union Workers: Posted on Milwaukee Live-On March 25, 2009:
These are pertinent excerpts from this article:
“The Employee Free Choice Act—known as the “card check” bill pending in Congress—calls for an easier system to allow employees to form, join, or assist labor organizations, but some workers say that the bill is giving unions the green light to use aggressive tactics to get them to sign up.
Under the bill, employees can request blank cards from an existing unions and request signatures on the card from employees. The legislation will allow companies to hold secret ballot elections to decide on unionization if 30 percent of employees sign the cards.
Though the bill is still pending, some companies like the Dana Corporation Auto Parts plant in Albion, Ind., have already begun using the card check process.
Union organizers came to the plant two years ago to ask employees to join the United Auto Workers and sign a card—an effort that was permitted because the company signed a neutrality agreement with the union.
But accusations about the UAW’s aggressive campaign to get signatures has ignited fury among plant workers, some of whom claim they were hassled, intimidated and harassed by union organizers until they signed the card.
Some workers allege union organizers followed them to their cars—and even showed up at their homes demanding a signature.
“We’re here in a little town and we’re a a plant of 50 some people—you know the last thing you need is to have the union coming to your door saying I want your name,” Dana employee Jamie Oliver told FOX News.
Some plant employees claimed the card check process created divisiveness at work, causing some employees to be threatened by coworkers who had wanted the union.
The UAW declined to give comment to FOX News on the employees’ complaints.
The latest version of the Employee Free Choice Act was introduced to both chambers of Congress on March 10, 2009. – FOX News
Exclusive: Unions renew battle over union law: Posted on Politico-By MIKE ALLEN-On April 3, 2009:
These are pertinent excerpts from this article:
“Labor organizations plan to use the two-week congressional recess that begins this weekend to try to build momentum for legislation giving unions additional rights.
A labor official said supporters of the measure are planning “the biggest grassroots mobilization of America’s workers since the final week of the presidential election.”
The measure – called the Employee Free Choice Act by unions and “card check” by business, which opposes the idea – suffered a possibly fatal blow last month when Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), a critical swing vote, said he would oppose it.
But both sides say they plan to keep up their drive, and labor has begun talking to other Republican senators that might win over.
Richard L. Trumka, secretary-treasurer of the AFL-CIO, told POLITICO during an interview at the group’s headquarters: “We hope to take good advantage of the recess to reconnect with our members. The other side is declaring victory, but this is just starting.”
An official at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the leading business lobby, said: “The chamber is still going after this. I don’t think one less vote means this is dead at all.”
The U.S. Chamber did a “fly-in” this week so members could visit Capitol Hill and tape comments for future TV ads. More than 100 participants came in from Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Montana, North Carolina and North Dakota
The chamber is also running print ads in Colorado, Montana, North Carolina and North Dakota. Labor plans more than 300 events are planned nationwide, including ones with environmental groups, the faith community and the civil rights community.
“Anyone who thinks the battle over the Employee Free Choice Act is over is wrong with a capital W,” the labor official said. “
“We are more determined then ever and the expenditures on ads and massive field operations show that we are putting 100 percent of our efforts behind this bill.”
The events include delivering signatures and letters to senators’ district offices, rallies, worker roundtables, letter-writing and phone-banking events, delegation visits, town halls, worksite leafleting and editorial board meetings.
Labor groups are running a new ad, “Fabric of America,” which was shot in an actual flag factory that uses union workers. The spot, by American Rights at Work, will run on broadcast and cable in key states, and on national cable.
The text: “It’s an idea that makes America strong. It’s a fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work. It’s health insurance when you’re sick or injured. It’s job security to provide for your family. It’s the fabric of a sound economy. It built the middle class. And it’s what the Employee Free Choice Act is all about: Letting workers choose to join a union to earn better pay and benefits. The Employee Free Choice Act. It’s time our economy worked for everyone again.”
UAW wins big Chrysler stake but can’t run company: Posted on Yahoo! News-By TOM KRISHER and DAVE CARPENTER, AP Business Writers-On May 3, 2009:
These are pertinent excerpts from this article:
“DETROIT – The United Auto Workers union would appear to be the big winner in the Chrysler bankruptcy saga, having exercised its considerable political muscle to win a 55 percent stake in the country’s third-largest automaker.
But when you consider the 55 percent is in a company that lost $16.8 billion last year and has seen its sales drop by half, the victory seems less impressive. Especially since the union’s stock must necessarily be converted at some point to cash to pay billions of dollars in retiree health care bills over the next 25 years.
Plus, the union’s control in the boardroom will be limited. Despite the large stake, it gets only one seat on a nine-member board that will govern a new Chrysler-Fiat joint venture.
Yes, the union could still come out the winner at Chrysler and at General Motors Corp., which has offered the UAW a 39 percent stake as part of its own reorganization plan. But that depends on the iffy prospect of the companies making money again and their stock values sharply rising.
“I think it’s a whole lot weaker than it appears,” said Gerald Meyers, a University of Michigan business professor and former CEO of American Motors Corp. “I would say the UAW wouldn’t want to get into the speculative game of the stock market. That’s not reassuring to retirees.”
Unions have in the past traded an ownership stake in a struggling company for wage cuts or other money-saving steps. For the most part the deals, such as an employee stock ownership plan at UAL Corp., parent of United Airlines, have worked well at first, only to fall apart when economic times grew tough, with labor and management fighting as profits declined.
The UAW started making concessions during 2007 contract negotiations and that helped in negotiating the stakes they stand to gain now. At the time, both GM and Chrysler had huge labor cost disadvantages compared with Japanese automakers, mainly because they have far more retirees and had agreed to pay their health care bills.
For GM, the health care tab is projected to total $46.7 billion over the lives of about 350,000 retirees and spouses. At Chrysler, it’s $10.9 billion for around 82,000 retirees.
So to unload the costs, the companies persuaded a reluctant UAW to take billions in cash to set up trust funds called voluntary employees beneficiary associations, or VEBAs, to pay the bills starting next year.
But the U.S. auto market went bad and both automakers ran out of cash.
Enter government financing and the Obama administration, which engineered the Chrysler-UAW deal. Chrysler has now formed an alliance with Fiat, and the government will finance what it hopes will be a quick Chrysler bankruptcy. Chrysler plans to close five more factories and shed thousands more workers as it slims down and resets to build Fiat-designed fuel-efficient cars in North America.
The UAW spent nearly $5 million in independent expenditures to promote Obama’s campaign, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, and some Chrysler debt-holders contend that the union was unfairly rewarded for that support. Secured creditors were offered roughly 30 cents on the dollar for $6.9 billion in debt. A few balked and the deal fell apart late Wednesday, triggering Thursday’s bankruptcy filing.
The UAW’s reward, though, could turn out to be punishment if the stock price doesn’t rise.
“What’s happening at Chrysler and GM is not employee ownership in any recognizable way,” said Corey Rosen, founder and executive director of the nonprofit National Center for Employee Ownership. “The employees don’t own any part of Chrysler or GM, it’s the health trust, and they’re going to sell that stock as soon as they can. It’s more like somebody saying ‘I can’t pay the money I owe you, so take some stock and you can sell it.’”
That’s exactly what the union intends to do, its president Ron Gettelfinger said Friday in an interview with National Public Radio.
“The VEBA’s going to be stressed in order to pay the benefits. So what we will need to do … is as soon as we possibly can, to start selling these shares,” he said.
Fiat is a likely buyer for at least part of the UAW shares, should they gain value. Under its deal with Chrysler, the Italian automaker takes an initial 20 percent stake in exchange for small-car technology. That can rise to 35 percent as goals are met, and Fiat has options to bring its stake up to 51 percent.
Even with the stock, the union won’t have much say in the Chrysler boardroom. The trust gets just the one board seat, and it has to vote its shares “in accordance with the direction of the independent directors on the Chrysler board,” according to a summary of the UAW’s contract concessions.
Owning 55 percent of a company doesn’t mean you’re managing or even significantly influencing it. Three big employee groups at Chicago-based UAL Corp. agreed to wage cuts and work rule changes in 1994 in exchange for 55 percent of UAL’s stock and board seats.
It worked for a year or so. Management introduced task force teams and invited employees into strategy sessions aimed at lowering costs. But the sense of partnership soon unraveled as the employees learned that stock ownership didn’t translate to real power or even an ability to sway the board. The employee stock ownership program was eventually eliminated during UAL’s Chapter 11 restructuring, in 2003.
Employees of Tribune Co. also got majority ownership as part of the 2007 deal that made multibillionaire investor Sam Zell chairman and CEO. But they also shouldered a good deal of the risk — without control, or even board representation. The future of Tribune’s ESOP is highly tenuous with the Chicago company now in bankruptcy court.
The UAW for years had a seat on the boards of Chrysler and Daimler Chrysler AG — Chrysler’s previous owner — but had little to show for it, said Harry Katz, dean of the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations. “That never connected down to the shop floor,” he said.
Unlike European unions, the UAW has shied away from boardroom power plays, instead exercising its will at the bargaining table, he said.
Katz said the UAW, through the stock it will get, has gained power relative to management, but it doesn’t mean as much when there are no profits to divvy up.
The union was able to preserve base wages and rich health benefits, which is remarkable even though it had to make other concessions, Katz said. He noted that workers represented by the UAW fared far better than nonunion employees at other companies that have entered bankruptcy protection, such as defunct Houston-based energy company Enron Corp.
Dave Carpenter reported from Chicago. Associated Press Writer Sam Hananel in Washington contributed to this report.”
My recent blogs reveal the use of Alinsky’s Rules by the President and his campaign staff, during his Presidential election campaign and post election, which seems to answer the question-You Decide:
Are We Witnessing Alinsky’s Rules At Work?
What is the Wagner Act?
ACORN-The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA)-Automaker Labor Unions:
“Food For Thought”
“God Bless & Keep Our USA Safe”