Peder D4

Discussion of politics and other odious things

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Secrets & Lies

You may have seen these commercials:

(Yes, the 'hero' bit from the second one is over the top.)
At issue is something called 'card check'. It would allow union advocates to bypass secret ballot elections in favor of having workers sign a card to show their support. Here's an article detailing the history and possible future from Reason.
Opponents fear that it would allow unions to bully people into supporting them. Co-workers can exert a large amount of influence, especially if they're sitting right next to you when you're trying to decide. Unions know this and are counting on it. Otherwise this wouldn't be important to them.
The Minnesota DFL has filed a complaint about the above ads.
The DFL, in a complaint under Minnesota election laws to the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings, said that claim is false and that in fact the bill would guarantee the right to secret ballots.
That's right. If the potential union leaders want a secret ballot, they can still have one. The problem is that they can do without one if they don't. That means that the guarantee that the DFL is claiming only goes one way. Whichever way the union wants and any employee that's worried about what his coworkers think can go suck rocks.
This won't be a deciding issue in 2008. There are obviously bigger things to worry about. Still I think it's worth pointing out the almost Orwellian response from the MN DFL. They don't care about the little people, only the powerful on their own side.


Blogger James Colby said...

You know, to a large extent, we agree on this point. Of course I'm still going to vote for it.

I'm voting for it because I'm a strong union supporter. Most people against this are in favor of big business. You seem to be making the argument that you are taking the 3rd side and standing up for the worker's right to privacy, which is perfectly commendable, even though it's pretty obvious, the Republican party's stance on privacy.

It should be noted that nothing about this law forces a worker to vote in an open ballot. They can simply say they refuse to participate in anything other than a secret ballot.

This doesn't prevent any so called "bullying" from co-workers or union leaders, but there is nothing to prevent it from employers either. As a guy who worked at wal-mart one summer in college and then again as a 2nd job when I was transitioning from my military career to a civilion one, I can speak first hand about the tactics they use to scare you away from unions and it's considerable.

I agree with you that this proposal is rediculous, but I support it because it makes strides towards balancing the scales of influence between labor and industry.

Now it fails to put the rights of the individual worker above or on par with the other two, but until I see a prop that does; I will vote for the one the brings us closer to balance.

2:36 AM  

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