Friday, March 11, 2011

Los Angeles Rally for Worker's Rights

The denial of collective bargaining to public sector unions by the state of Wisconsin has been the spark of what has been described as the beginnings of an all-out assault on the middle class in our country. In response, Labor Organizations have begun to mobilize their members in rallys and marches to bring the struggle for worker's rights to the forefront of the attention of the general public.

IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb implores all Los Angeles locals to support the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor's "Our Communities, Our Jobs" march and rally on March 26th. In his letter, he states:

America's working class is under attack and it's time to fight back and create our own hope and change. We need to mobilize our members, along with many other unions and the LA County Federation of Labor, and work together to maximize participation and energize working families across Los Angeles, Southern California and the entire country to fight back.

While this march will be stopping at Ralphs grocery stores to provide support for Ralphs employees whose contract soon expires, solidarity against the attacks on workers rights in the city of Los Angeles and across the country is imperative.

We encourage members of TAG, as well as readers of this blog who are appalled at the national attempts being made to strip the rights of workers to join us at the rally. We look forward to your support here and in future showings of solidarity toward the efforts to end the attack on working men and women.

A copy of the LA County Fed's flier on the march and rally can be found at this link.

26 comments:

Hey! said...

What's happening in Wiscounsin is unbelievable. The middle class in the US need to wake up and assert itself. Otherwise, the working conditions will certainly revert to what it was. 16 hour workdays, no benefits, extremely low wages...

http://www.historyisaweapon.com/defcon1/socchal13.html

wake up!

Anonymous said...

Just so everyone knows what we are fighting against here's a link to Walkers rant over on that rag the Wall Street Journal.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704132204576190260787805984.html

I mean just read it - he wants to balance the budget! He wants to keep state employees benefits well above those offered by the Feds. What a bastard!

Get out there and march! Block traffic! Scream that anyone that disagrees with us in a Nazi pedophile!

No Union! No Peace!

John Q. Public said...

The thing is, from the day that public unions were granted collective bargaining, they never really bargained! Instead the unions have bought off politicians to do what they want via campaign contributions. The real employers, the taxpayers, had no say at all in all the generous benefits given to the union members. All this corruption from the unions and politicians have left the taxpayers holding the tab. It's pure corruption from the unions and politicians, and has to stop! Look how those 14 democrats ran away, clearly they are owned.

The "attack on the middle class" stuff is basically nonsense, since what, 12% or less are in unions. If anything, we middle class are under attack from the elite public union members that we support with our taxes.

As you can probably guess, I don't support your rally.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this posting war is gonna be a fun one to sit back and read as it unfolds - Rabid Union Lovers vs. Small Gov Types.

Bring it on bitches!

Steven Kaplan said...

I find it funny how the pro-corporatist right post on a labor union's blog.

More rhetoric and horse manure, please! Tell me how Gov. Walker only wants to balance the budget, put a chicken in every oven and kiss babies. At the same time he strips collective bargaining from public sector unions and puts private sector unions on notice that they're next.

Enjoy your union benefits and union fought-and-won weekend troll. We'll be making sure you're well represented at the rally.

Anonymous said...

Today's New York Times has a nice article that shows that the benefits that public sector workers get have absolutely zero correlation with whether they have collective bargaining or not. Some of the worst state budgets, and some of the public workforces with the most extravagant benefits, are states that have virtually no union presence.

What Walker is doing in Wisconsin has nothing to do with balancing the budget. It has everything to do with politics.

Of course, the pro-corporatist, anti-union contingent won't be swayed by facts and economic realities. They just know that unions are bad, and the world will somehow magically be better when unions are gone.

And once they accomplish the complete and total destruction of unions, and the world isn't the better place they promised, they'll pick another scapegoat.

Anonymous said...

“It is impossible to bargain collectively with the government.”

That wasn’t Newt Gingrich, or Ron Paul, or Ronald Reagan talking. That was George Meany -- the former president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O -- in 1955. Government unions are unremarkable today, but the labor movement once thought the idea absurd.

The founders of the labor movement viewed unions as a vehicle to get workers more of the profits they help create. Government workers, however, don’t generate profits. They merely negotiate for more tax money. When government unions strike, they strike against taxpayers. F.D.R. considered this “unthinkable and intolerable.”

Government collective bargaining means voters do not have the final say on public policy. Instead their elected representatives must negotiate spending and policy decisions with unions. That is not exactly democratic – a fact that unions once recognized.

George Meany was not alone. Up through the 1950s, unions widely agreed that collective bargaining had no place in government. But starting with Wisconsin in 1959, states began to allow collective bargaining in government. The influx of dues and members quickly changed the union movement’s tune, and collective bargaining in government is now widespread. As a result unions can now insist on laws that serve their interests – at the expense of the common good.

Union contracts make it next to impossible to reward excellent teachers or fire failing ones. Union contracts give government employees gold-plated benefits – at the cost of higher taxes and less spending on other priorities. The alternative to Walker's budget was kicking 200,000 children off Medicaid.

Governor Walker’s plan reasserts voter control over government policy. Voters’ elected representatives should decide how the government spends their taxes. More states should heed the A.F.L.-C.I.O. Executive Council’s 1959 advice: “In terms of accepted collective bargaining procedures, government workers have no right beyond the authority to petition Congress — a right available to every citizen.”

Anonymous said...

(This reader munches on popcorn and sips his Diet Coke)

This is gonna get good!

Anonymous said...

Steve Kaplan wrote:

"I find it funny how the pro-corporatist right post on a labor union's blog. "


The issue in Wisconsin has NOTHING to do with any corporation of any kind. How am I supporting corporations when I don't want politicians to be paid off and my taxes increased without a vote?

Your passion is commendable, but completely misplaced and on this topic, you are woefully misinformed. To whit:



"More rhetoric and horse manure, please! Tell me how Gov. Walker only wants to balance the budget, put a chicken in every oven and kiss babies. At the same time he strips collective bargaining from public sector unions"


You do realize that federal government employees do NOT have collective bargaining rights for their salaries. You DO realize that right? You must have just made a mistake when you started crying about the crime that is being committed by stripping those super expensive indulgences from this small sliver of public employees...

And who took collective bargaining rights away from federal government workers?

It must have been Reagan that bastard!!... no.
It was Jimmy Carter. The most liberal president in the last 75 years.

So get bent.

Steven Kaplan said...

Anon -

As I said, the affront on Wisconsin federal employees is merely the beginning on the assault to workers rights that Gov. Walker has planned. He's put private sector unions on notice in statements made to the press.

Second, I never said public sector unions could collectively bargain for their salaries. Thanks for punctuating a point that wasn't there, all the while beating your pro-conservative chest.

Third - I've been bent my whole life. Back at ya.


In Solidarity,

Steve K

Anonymous said...

"the affront on Wisconsin federal employees is merely the beginning on the assault to workers rights that Gov. Walker has planned."

Where was this said??

Did you read it on MoveOn.org? Did Rachel Maddow blurt it out on her show.

Spare me the histrionics and show me the quote.

Anonymous said...

Please don't cramp up Kaplan's rhetorical rantings with requests for facts.

He'll just go off that you are a typical right-wing-jack-booted-Fox news-loving-moron who is unfit to understand his lofty thoughts.

Look, I am a union member (20+ years) but I tend to vote on the fiscally conservative side of the ballot. I'm not a fan of union busters, but I honestly think what happened in WI was a step back toward common sense.

Will I be marching? No. But I will be in front of Ralphs' - chaperoning my daughter and her troop mates as they sell Thin Mints and Somonas. Please support her troop as you march on by...and if you could watch your language. Some of those rants in WI are a lil salty.

Anonymous said...

The big issue I have with WI is that Walker gave some big tax cuts to a bunch of corporations thereby creating the shortfall that he keeps bemoaning. Then he comes after public union workers to make up the difference. The situation in WI is a microcosm view of the redistribution of wealth and power to the top that is going on at all levels of government. Look around at our country, racing to the bottom, and try to understand that this is why.

Adam Smith said...

"The big issue I have with WI is that Walker gave some big tax cuts to a bunch of corporations thereby creating the shortfall that he keeps bemoaning."

Spoken clearly by someone without a clue.

Walker was elected in November, you realize that they are running a deficit over 3 billion dollars right? You think this came about since November? Someone has flunked his or her Economics class. Or maybe you've never taken one?

This budget is from the former legislature and governor. It's from their failed attempts to do anything about the rising cost and kick the can down the road for someone else to deal with.

Perhaps you and the representatives who ran away from their jobs should take a business class so you know how wealth is created. Then you might know a little bit about what you are ranting about.

Lev Davidovich Bronshtein said...

Didn't you guys have a worker's revolt already?

In 1917.

How'd that work out for ya?

Anonymous said...

"Spoken clearly by someone without a clue."

Adam - after doing more research, I will admit that I was misinformed. I will also admit that you are extremely rude. Is there a reason you can't have a discussion without lashing out in personal attacks?

Anonymous said...

John q. Public doesn't seem to have a problem disrespecting our armed service members or the Constitution. Otherwise he'd be bitching about the private contractors getting paid up to 14 times more with taxpayer money for a job our military was designed to do. Even doubling our military pay would save the billions wasted on criminal pursuits in the middle east. Have you no shame?

Anonymous said...

"small government" types must have loved the last 4 republikan presidents--the government grew larger than ever under them--with the largest growth happening under that idiot shrub.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this is Bush's fault?

Boy, I thought that sad pathetic whine would have expired by now. Do me a favor, just bow out of the discussion. Its obvious to everyone that you've lost when you devolve into blaming Bush. We're three years of past his term and every budget created by this democrat congress and democrat president has had budgets exploding with insane spending. Your party had complete control of the government and you haven't done anything that the public supports.

Answer me this; did the republicans leave DC when there was a vote on health care reform? No? Okay.

You lost. You're a joke.

Anonymous said...

"Oh, this is Bush's fault?" - He holds some blame. Illegal wars costing us trillions of dollars play a large part in our current situation.

"every budget created by this democrat congress and democrat president has had budgets exploding with insane spending" - so now you blanket blame the democrats. The wars were not on the books - Obama's admin added them and that is a huge part of the problem; The stimulus bill was passed under Bush; Yes, we need to reign in spending but we also need revenues in the form of taxes. The Republicans seem to forget that part.

"Your party had complete control of the government and you haven't done anything that the public supports." - That's just false.

"did the republicans leave DC when there was a vote on health care reform?" - No, they didn't leave. They had to be there in order to filibuster an historic number of times thereby blocking the ability to vote on anything. Those people may have showed up for work but they failed to do the people's business for years.

I'm not particularly happy with anything going on in Washington from either side over the last few years. But unless you're a billionaire, the Republican party doesn't give a rat's a$$ about you. Stop voting against your own best interests!

Oh, and ps, in case you're planning to use the "big government" argument at some point. Pay attention to what the Republicans DO, not what they say.

Anonymous said...

"we also need revenues in the form of taxes."

YES! Lets raise taxes during a recession!

There is no single act that would eject the democrats from the white house and ever having a majority in our government for the next ten or more years.

They need more money - nevermind the recent report of government waste that detailed billions of dollars thrown away in every department. we need the government to take care of us. you should introduce a bill where they come to your house and wipe your ass for you.

"The stimulus bill was passed under Bush"

The stimulus PASSED a majority democratic congress and was SIGNED by Obama.
(and it was more expensive than the Iraq war - $150 billion more)


Go back to watching Richard Maddow.
(I'm pretty sure 'Richard' is that guy's name)

Anonymous said...

Actually, the stimulus was $200 billion less than the Iraq war--a war we didn't need and was lied into by a bunch of wingnut teabaggers.

Anonymous said...

the bush economic debacle is, well yes...bush's fault. Enlarging government and raising taxes more than any president in history, selling out individuals and small business in favor of corporate communism isn't what America thinks of as "conservatism." The people who supported this are selfish. And they caused the bush economic debacle.

History and context are everything. They must have cut funding for education when you were going to school. Either that or your education is by way of alcoholic glen beck.

Anonymous said...

"
Actually, the stimulus was $200 billion less than the Iraq war-"


Actually no it wasn't. The Congressional Budget Offices numbers illustrate quite clearly that 8 years of the Iraq war cost 15% less than the stimulus Obama promised would fix the economy.

Also worth noting; during Bush' Iraq years, 2003-2008, the federal government spent more on education that it did on the Iraq War. (State and local governments spent about ten times more.)

http://tinyurl.com/25fz3bl


Its amazing how many posts you make with how much you don't know.

Anonymous said...

"8 years of the Iraq war cost 15% less than the stimulus"

Politifact.com rates this as "barely true"

"So by that barometer, Tapscott is right that spending on the stimulus exceeds the cost of the Iraq war, although by $64 billion, rather than $100 billion.

But there’s a big assumption in his logic. As Harrison put it to us, the comparison "assumes the cost of the Iraq War ends" this year."

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2010/aug/25/mark-tapscott/did-stimulus-cost-more-war-iraq/

And since this was written in 2010, and the Iraq War didn't end in 2010, I rate that as "false".

Anonymous said...

By the way, wouldn't you prefer that we invest in our own country's infrastructure and communities rather than fund a brutal occupation of another in order to steal their natural resources?

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