This would make sense under normal circumstances, and with workers who were actually bidding for contracted work. But Hurricane Sandy has created extraordinary circumstances in New Jersey, and the crew in question were volunteers trying to lend a hand in a time of devastation.
Via the Daily Caller:
Utility crews from several states East of the Mississippi River hit the road this week to volunteer their time and talents in Northeastern states hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. But crews from Alabama got the shock of their lives when other workers in a coastal New Jersey town told them they couldn’t lend a hand without a union card.
Derrick Moore, who works for Decatur Utilities in Decatur, Ala., told WAFF-TV in Huntsville that crews in Seaside Heights, N.J. turned him and his crewmates away, saying they couldn’t do any work there because they’re not union employees.
As a result, crews from Decatur and Huntsville left the Jersey shore and headed to Long Island to pitch in.
WAFF’s Mark Thornton reported that Moore and his coworkers “are frustrated being told, in essence, ‘thanks, but no thanks.’”
Other utility crews have been told to stand down, while other have turned around and headed back home.
Yesterday, Steve Madarasz, Communications Director for CSEA, joined the hosts of 810 WGY’s morning show to discuss the recall election in Wisconsin.
The interview started off with the pat union response for their defeat in Wisconsin – the election was bought.
Madarasz stated that, it’s “a very sad commentary on the role money plays in today’s political field”.
The premise is a false one, but one that those who supported the recall of Scott Walker have to make. Otherwise, they would have to admit that the embarrassing defeat was a referendum on their policies and platforms, something they can’t seem to come to grips with.
Madarasz continued to push that theory, bitterly stating that campaign cash was the only reason that Walker was victorious. But a report in the Wisconsin State Journal late last month indicates the contrary. The results of that report state that an “analysis of the money that has flowed into all state campaigns and political groups since Walker took office suggests backers of the two major political parties have competed on an unusually level playing field.”
What was even more interesting perhaps was when host Chuck Custer asked Madarasz if he could understand the public’s frustration with union representatives fighting the call for greater contributions to healthcare costs, something more in line with the private sector.
Madarasz responded thusly:
“Oh we absolutely understand that. We also understand that the public really doesn’t have a clue when it comes to the reality of what that’s all about.”
Madarasz himself didn’t seem to have a clue what the question was all about, as evidenced by this exchange:
Madarasz: “The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of our members do contribute to their health insurance and always have.”
Custer: “But I mean as much as the average person?”
Madarasz: “I think the sad commentary is that we have a real healthcare crisis in this country and part of this right-wing agenda that we’re seeing right now is going after the President on trying to have a plan that’s going to help people across the country.”
Nice use of the dodge right there. Instead of addressing the issue of union members paying into their healthcare – the specific topic of the question – Madarasz went off on an Obamacare and ‘right-wing agenda’ tangent.
That said, this is another example of the union leaders having to avoid facts and instead provide falsehoods, or in this case, simply change the subject.
The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research released a report last year showing that public employees not only contribute far less to their health insurance premiums than the private sector – 15% as opposed to 25% on average – but that their plans also provide more generous benefits, and require lower deductibles and co-pays.
But then, the public wouldn’t have a clue about that.
Ah, the unhinged left at it’s finest. They absolutely have to be beside themselves after Scott Walker’s victory in Wisconsin last night. This person took the loss particularly hard, taking out their anger on … Tom Barrett?
From the National Review (h/t Jim):
Those warm, loving, kind-hardest leftists will turn on you so fast: last night an enraged supporter of Tom Barrett slapped him for conceding the race.
I don’t recall – no pun intended – this sort of thing ever happening on an Election Night before.
I wonder how Democrats feel about having a grassroots base that is, in part, psychotic to the point of physical violence upon their own candidates for acknowledging reality. At the time, Barrett trailed by about 10 percentage points or 200,000 votes; as of this morning, Walker won by 7 percentage points, or roughly 173,000 votes.
And here’s the video violence…
When Sarah Palin was being blamed for the Gabby Giffords shooting by liberals citing her targeted election maps, there was a renewed call for civil discourse in our country.
Targets you see, incite violence.
The incident prompted President Obama to deliver a speech which had been described as “calm amid the toxic rhetoric”.
There were calls for a “new tone” in politics.
This must have been what he had in mind…
Donna DeWitt, head of the South Carolina chapter of the AFL-CIO, repeatedly blasting an effigy of Governor Nikki Haley with a baseball bat, while union thugs are heard in the background screaming for her to “hit it again”, “wait ’til her face comes around and whack her”, and commenting on how Haley “is a tough old bitch”.
The video has been downloaded and posted below, since the national office of the AFL-CIO is trying to have it removed.
Via the Columbia Free Times:
A video posted online that shows a former union leader in South Carolina smashing a piñata effigy of Gov. Nikki Haley has riled the national office of the AFL-CIO, which wants it taken down.
“Do you think we can get this video pulled,” asked a national AFL-CIO official in an email to Palmetto State union sources.
The author of the email also worried the video might get “picked up by tea partiers, maybe even Haley herself, to attack labor again.”
The video in question features former AFL-CIO of South Carolina president Donna DeWitt smacking a Haley piñata with a baseball bat at DeWitt’s retirement party over the weekend.
It is accompanied with text under the video that reads in part, “Gov. Nikki Haley has been vicious to organized labor in South Carolina, saying in her State of the State address that ‘unions are not needed, wanted or welcome.’ After years of being treated like a union thug, Donna Dewitt gets sweet revenge at a reception in her honor.”
The Albany Times Union has broken a story involving correction officers in Rensselaer county trying to unseat the incumbent Republican sheriff, Jack Mahar, through unsavory means. The crux of the story involves getting inmates to register or change their enrollment to the Conservative Party, giving the Democrat challenger, Gary Gordon, an edge in the general election. Gordon ended up capturing the Conservative line by a narrow margin, but losing the general election to Mahar.
Reports show a labor union leader for the corrections officers, Kevin Rogers, allegedly dropping off 140 voter registration forms that enrolled people in the Conservative Party, of which four have been confirmed to be inmates.
Via the Times Union:
Correction officers at Rensselaer County Jail pushed to register inmates to vote in last fall’s primary and general election as part of an effort to unseat Sheriff Jack Mahar.
State and federal law enforcement agencies have launched broad investigations into the activities of the correction officers, including whether their initiative to garner inmates’ votes violated state or federal laws. The probes are part of a broader investigation that began when a group of correction officers accused their labor leaders of fraud and looting union dues for personal use.
The Internal Revenue Service and U.S. Attorney’s office are involved in the investigation, according to two people briefed on the matter. The investigations follow years of documented civil rights violations inside the county correctional facility, including systemic beatings of prisoners, strip-search policies that were declared unconstitutional by a federal court and sexual assaults of inmates.
Representatives for the U.S. Attorney’s office and the state attorney general declined comment.
While inmates exercising their right to vote is not illegal – it is rare according to Republican election’s commissioner, Larry Bugbee – having the corrections officers solicit them or help them register, is.
Gordon, to his credit, voiced unease at the prospect of taking such actions.
“There came a point in time during my campaign that I became aware of a drive to get Conservative voters, to get people to register,” Gordon said. “Shortly after that there was discussion to talk to inmates, to get inmates to register, and I put a stop to that. … I don’t even know who was in the room when we were discussing it. Piche or Rogers may have been there. The decision was made not to solicit inmates.”
These latest allegations against the officer’s union – Sheriffs Employees Association of Rensselaer County (SEARCO) – stem from another investigation which alleges that Mark A. Piche and Rogers, president and vice-president of the union respectively, used tens of thousands of dollars in employee dues to hold parties at strip clubs, bars, and to make donations to political campaigns.
Two weeks ago, the Times Union reported:
The former leaders of a Rensselaer County jail officers union spent tens of thousands of dollars in union money for outings at top-scale restaurants, strip clubs, bars and to make contributions to political campaigns and organizations in which they had a personal interest.
Apparently, the union leaders covered up their transgressions by refusing to reveal their itemized expenditures, instead leaving over $14,000 worth of transactions with the vague label of ‘donation’, and another untraceable $8,000 in ATM withdrawals. Banking records obtained by the Times Union however, show some questionable transactions made using the union debit card.
On Jan. 3, 2008, the records show, the union’s debit card was used to pay for a $1,611.75 tab at Angelo’s 677 Prime, an upscale Albany steakhouse. The same day, records show the union’s debit card was used for $52.85 in purchases from Troy Food Mart; $81.83 at a Troy diner; $55 at an Asian-style restaurant; and a withdrawal of $103.50 from an ATM at a topless dance club, Double Vision, in Halfmoon.
Two weeks earlier, on Dec. 21, 2007, the debit card was used for a $62 purchase at Valenti’s Pub in Troy and also for two withdrawals totaling $344 from the same topless bar in Halfmoon. On other occasions, the card was used to pay for multi-hundred-dollar tabs at area bars and restaurants.
They also used their debit card to either donate or purchase tickets to events made by a local professional boxing promotion to the tune of nearly $2,000, over $2,000 in donations for a youth baseball team, and a whopping $20,000 in restaurant and bar tabs at Piche’s family owned restaurant.
Piche and Gordon were topics of conversation in a very heated election between Mahar and Gordon last year, as they tried to get the Democrat candidate to fix tickets in exchange for their endorsement.
During last year’s campaign, audiotapes of recorded telephone conversations between union officials, including Piche, and Gordon, the Rensselaer County district attorney’s investigator who challenged Mahar for the job, were released by the sheriff’s department. The tapes revealed union members apparently pressuring Gordon to help fix traffic tickets for their relatives in exchange for their endorsement and work on his campaign.
Gordon flat-out denies any role in the alleged scheme, and the taped conversations offer no proof to the contrary. But while Gordon’s role may have only been as pawn to the union whim, the union corruption can not be ignored.
These findings also come on the heels of a major voter fraud case in upstate New York, where absentee ballots were allegedly forged by Democrat operatives in an attempt to secure the Working Families Party line in the elections.
Perhaps it’s about time we acknowledge upstate New York as a contender for the most politically corrupt area in the nation. Chicago would be proud.
American workers are being forced by union leaders to give money to partisan political activity they oppose. On February 8th, three of these workers testified before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform about how forced political contributions violate their freedom and rights. But Terry Bowman, Claire Waites and Sally Coomer are not alone: manyworkers are not even informed of their right to control their own hard-earned money, facing threats and intimidation when they are brave enough to speak out against this unfair loss of workplace freedom and fairness. These are the faces of forced contributions to the union special interest agenda.
Why is it when Union members don’t get there way, they resort to some sort of violence, thuggery, or general childish behavior?
Yesterday, the House Employment, Labor and Pensions Committee in Indiana, passed a contentious “Right to Work” bill 8-5. Democrats expressed outrage that Republicans refused to allow any amendments to the bill.
Hoosier Access reports on the mayhem that ensued:
Before the gavel even fell on the hearing protestors erupted on the House Floor claiming everything under the sun you’d expect to hear from a union protestor. One even called for legislators (presumably only the Republican members who voted for the bill) to be “tarred and feathered”.
It should be noted that the Democrat temper tantrums are what caused them to be unable to submit amendments in the first place.
It should also be noted, that if Democrats had not walked out, they would have been able to submit amendments to the Joint House and Senate Committee hearing last Friday.
So apparently, this particular protestor is calling for the tarring and feathering of people for NOT preventing amendments to the bill? The stupidity is mind-numbing…
Watch the video at the :45 second mark, then read more here…