Tag Archives: The Heritage Foundation

Common Core, It’s All About Control

Like Obamacare, Common Core is another government debacle, being pressed by far the far left as legislation that, in Nancy Pelosi’s vernacular, “needs to be passed so we can learn what is in it.” Once supported by leading teacher’s unions, such as the National Education Association (NEA), American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), many union officials are now questioning its merits. They are also concerned, among other things, of another Obamacare “train wreck” rollout, (see We’re Flying the Common Core Airplane as We’re Building It and Union Joins Opposition to Common Core National Standards and Tests), as well as its merit as an education model. Despite early union support, it appears some union members are beginning to wake up and realize that Common Core may not be what they bargained for, specifically after the Obama Administration had the Department of Education (DOE) publish the draft of this new program.

Titled Promoting Grit, Tenacity and Perseverance, the DOE’s draft, in fact, promotes just the opposite! The program promotes control rather than individuality and achievement.,. In this case, instead of controlling our health, it is intended to brainwash the minds of future generations to continue down the “progressive” path. In essence, they want to make us all sheep – easy to herd and easy to control! This is further expressed in Common Core Uses SEIU Protest to Teach 3rd Graders about ‘Rights and Responsibilities’, where SEIU tactics were taught to young elementary students. It is astonishing to see the lengths this Administration and its union buddies, especially the SEIU, will stoop to try and bring down capitalism and impose it’s  socialistic and communist viewpoints (see Communism at the Highest Levels).

Common Core promotes neither grit, nor tenacity, nor perseverance, but rather compliance and subservience. A friend’s quote is on point regarding Common Core:

“Grit, tenacity, and perseverance’ were things I thought were developed in the home, in church or on the playing field and often translated into the class room or board room.  The thought of institutionalizing the concept, while well intended, strikes me as quite a challenge.  Kind of like a government trying to instill morality and ethics into a society while mocking God as having anything to say on the subject.”

Additionally, there is much speculation about whether the Common Core standards do anything to advance the modern student.  See the Common Core Standards’ Devastating Impact on Literary Study and Analytical Thinking; Is Common Core Leaving Students Unprepared in Math and Science?; Doubts about Common Core ; video of an Arkansas Mom Destroying Common Core.

The preceding press on the subject, along with the questions by teachers’ union leadership, are strong arguments for states to reject Common Core and the federal money the Obama Administration has dangled in front of them to embrace these standards. However, there is something even more persuasive that should be acknowledged . . . the loss of something through Common Core which made this nation great – promoting self determination, self reliance and self esteem… none of which are taught within Common Core (see Common Core Indoctrination: “The People Must Obey The Government’s Commands”).

Obituary of Common Sense

It is Us vs Them and time for all Americans to come together, whether liberal, conservative, union, non-union, regardless of ethnic or religious background. We must join forces to reject this Administration’s agenda of control in time to reverse the The Decline of American Exceptionalism. America needs a resurgence of common sense, not the tyranny of Common Core!

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Leveling the Playing Field

Following my recent speech at The Heritage Foundation, I had the distinct honor and pleasure to meet with members from organizations dedicated to the true spirit of preservation and protection of American freedoms. In attendance were a prominent group of labor experts and other groups including The Heritage Foundation, The Manhattan Institute, The Labor Relations Institute and many others. We had an in-depth discussion about forced unionization, the effect it has on American employees and employers, and the role it plays in American economics and The Taking of American Freedoms.

The group engaged in a roundtable discussion where participants were provided an opportunity to ask questions about The Devil at Our Doorstep and my personal experiences with the SEIU. They wanted to better understand  how my company was able to rein in the intimidation tactics utilized by big labor during a Corporate Campaign, methods supported by recent NLRB decisions to force unionize employees though Card Check. As the discussion evolved, there were many suggestions on ways to eliminate the brutal campaign tactics. This included passage of a National Right-To-Work law (NRTW), embracing Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organizations lawsuits (RICO) and, at a state level, passage of laws intended to prohibit bullying and intimidation by labor bosses. James Sherk of The Heritage Foundation proposed that we should modify state extortion and blackmail laws to include unions, which are currently not implicated under labor law. This would prohibit pressure campaigns which are designed to force an employer to surrender, rather than trying to persuade the employees to unionize.

Although I am in favor of a National Right to Work Law and some of the additional legislation proposed by the participants, I noted some possible concerns. While NRTW is a potent tool to protect employees, it does not have the teeth to hold its own against the big labor bullies. NRTW merely eliminates the “security clause” in collective bargaining agreements, effectively allowing employees to opt out of the union if they so desire. NRTW does not, however, eliminate the “check off” clause that big labor utilizes to keep employees tethered to the union. This is a clause that big labor demands in its collective bargaining agreements because it forces the unionized entity to deduct union dues from the employees’ paychecks and submit them to the union, unless the employee openly declares he or she does not want to be a part of the union. This may sound simple, but due to behind the scene intimidation tactics used by big labor bosses at the workplace, very few employees will actually opt out and request non-union status. The big labor bosses don’t want to acknowledge that Collective Bargaining is a Privilege, Not a Right, fearing that members would vote with their pocket books and against the unions if these agreements were truly negotiated to benefit the members!

The “check off” clause is imperative to unions and is found in almost all collective bargaining agreements. With this clause, unions do not have to expend the time and money for accountants to bill and collect dues from the employee. More importantly, it is a guaranteed revenue steam that is not contingent on them providing a service to its membership. Unlike a typical business operating in a free market system that has to provide an acceptable product or service in order to be paid, big labor bosses do not have to worry about such inconveniences. Instead, they use intimidation to keep the membership in line and the money from dues flowing! If big labor actually had to collect its own dues, the members would react to its poor service as customers do when a business provides poor service, they would quit buying or in this case quit paying!

“To force a man to furnish contributions of money towards the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves is both sinful and tyrannical.” – Thomas Jefferson

This fact was made quite evident in two major instances, although neither was widely reported by the mainstream media. In the first year of Governor Mitch Daniels’ (R-IN) first term he eliminated the “check off” clause for public employees by Executive Order. Within the first year, approximately 90% of public employees quit paying union dues. They obviously were not pleased with the services provided. Not long thereafter, Governor Scott Walker (R-WI), achieved essentially the same result through legislation during the first years of his first term in office. Unions in Wisconsin immediately saw approximately a 30% drop in their membership when members voted with their pocketbooks and stopped sending monthly dues to the unions. Joe Brock, a former union organizer, succinctly summed up big labors’ pathetic record and inability to keep members without intimidation and coercion when he said, “If unions could do what they really say, instead of a 6.6% membership rate in the private sector, the union halls would look like Wal-Mart on Black Friday!”

Dianna Furchtgott-Roth of The Manhattan Institute, pointed out that RTW states not only have the highest employment growth over the last 4-5 years, but they also have the highest growth rate for union membership! The statistics she presented were absolutely astonishing, but few people likely picked up on the significance and reason behind the union growth in these states. Since employees aren’t required to join unions in RTW states, more companies are relocating to these RTW states. However, this actually provides unions new and fertile ground, as witnessed with the Boeing case in South Carolina. Despite the fact that a state or country is RTW, the law does nothing to prevent big labor Corporate Campaigns to force unionize employees and employers. In fact, as discussed by Russ Brown of The Labor Relations Institute, these campaigns are being exported all over the world as big labor becomes more and more desperate to reverse its dwindling membership!

It may come as a surprise to note that most union employees that are under the pressure and intimidation from big labor bosses will choose not to opt out of the union! The intimidation from union stewards and public employees paid to conduct union business on the job prevents employees from opting out of the union. As a part of any collective bargaining agreement, these people should not be allowed access to employees on the job! As Dianna described in her talking points, these public employees or Official Time Loafers contribute nothing to government except to further union goals and intimidate current employees to remain with the union, all at a cost to the taxpayers of approximately $156 Million each year. These are the jobs we should target to reduce government spending!

card-check-cartoon

The lesson to be learned is that when the free market is allowed to work and people are free from intimidation, they vote with their conscience. It is easy for big labor to intimidate and keep members when they have guaranteed means of collecting dues. However, when big labor is forced into a situation where they have to collect union dues on their own, it cannot accomplish the task! Even more important, this puts unions in a position where they must provide the service expected by the members and utilize dues for the employee’s benefit. If unions were to adopt this type of free market mentality, they would likely see their membership grow, without the use of intimidation and coercion. Unfortunately, they have no desire or understanding utilizing such an approach, hence the need to eliminate the “check off” clauses in any future RTW bills.

Obviously, this would be a highly contested issue as the President and the Democratic Party depend heavily on big labor for political contributions, political support and ground game. It is certain that the White House would block any attempt to pass a NRTW law, or any legislation that would eliminate the coveted “check off” clause. They know that big labor cannot compete without its bullying intimidation tactics, and in a true free market society, unions would become extinct. It is time to level the playing field for all Americans by passing a National Right to Work law that also prohibits dues “check off” clauses, because Right to Work Is A Basic American Freedom!

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The Devil at Our Doorstep Featured on C-SPAN2 BookTV

David Bego and The Devil at Our Doorstep

book tv

Sunday, March 10th – 8:00pm (ET)

David Bego, president and CEO of EMS, a workplace maintenance company that employs 5,000 people, talks about the power of unions in the United States through his new book, The Devil at Our Doorstep.  He also talks about his contentious relationship with the Service Employees International Union going back to 2006.  During this event, hosted by the Heritage Foundation in Washington, DC, Mr. Bego is joined by Diana Furchtgott-Roth of the Manhattan Institute and Russ Brown of the Labor Relations Institute.

The program will be airing Sunday, March 10th at 8pm (ET) on your local C-SPAN2 station. You can also WATCH C-SPAN2 ONLINE or check out the video on our YouTube Channel.

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Mr. Bego Goes to Washington

The Devil at Our Doorstep’s Book Event

New Video Footage Featuring David Bego

Hosted by The Heritage Foundation

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