Protecting Worker Freedom (from Union Bosses’ Political Spending)…

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…Darrell Issa wants to hear from you.

While less than 10% of union members today ever voted to be represented by a union and the majority of unionized workers are required to pay tribute to union bosses (aka union dues) or be fired from their jobs, today’s union bosses continue to use the moneys collected from these workers to fund their unions’ political operations. In 2010, for example, union bosses a reported $1.1 billion on politics and lobbying.

According to this Congressional staff report:

Recent court decisions have lifted limitations on the use of dues for political spending, and unions may now use dues to fund a myriad of political activities. Many workers are intentionally left unaware of their rights, and in some cases are subjected to a campaign of threats and extortion.

In fact, so clearly are unions dependent on forced dues to fund their political operations that, in its effort to strike down Indiana’s newly enacted right-to-work law, one union has filed a lawsuit arguing that restricting unions’ ability to forcibly collect dues infringed upon unions’ free speech rights:

Indiana’s new “right to work” law should be struck down because it infringes on unions’ free-speech rights by depriving them of the dues that fund their political speech, attorneys for a union challenging the law contend.

[snip]

“In this case, the state of Indiana restricted a channel of speech-supporting finance,” the union brief maintains. “The Union legitimately utilizes dues money collected through the agency shop provisions in its collective bargaining agreements, in part, to finance political speech. The Indiana Right to Work law prohibits agency shop agreements, and that prohibition restricts a channel through which speech-supporting finance might flow.”

Enter ProtectingOurWorkers.com, a website launched by the U.S. House Oversight Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa [R-CA].

In addition to a page where workers can “blow the whistle” on their union bosses’ forced political contribution, the site’s homepage contains a statement that most Americans (except union bosses) would agree with:

Americans have a right to personal freedom. No one should tell us what to think or believe. But look around: there are real political and economic barriers to personal freedom. Hardworking Americans are being forced to give up their income to pay for partisan politics they don’t support. That’s not right, and it’s not American.

Workers should decide how their hard-earned money is spent. They should know how their dues are spent. That’s something everyone should agree on. Because personal freedom isn’t partisan: it’s American.

We are committed to working with everyone – workers, union leaders and each other – to restore workplace freedom and fairness for all Americans.

Understanding the fact that anything critical of union bosses sparks “outrage” from the House of Labor, the sheer hypocrisy of union bosses being “infuriated” (according to Huffington Post) at the site is ludicrous given that the federal executive branch is now a tool of union bosses and many agencies encourage reporting on their employers.

Apparently, in the union world, what’s good for the goose isn’t good for the gander after all.

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“Truth isn’t mean. It’s truth.”
Andrew Breitbart (1969-2012)

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