Want to Stop Sweetheart Deals for Corrupt Union Bosses? Stop Supporting Their Employers.

Are you outraged that corrupt union bosses just got a  sweetheart deal and will now be the only ones (aside from the Amish) to be exempt from this “Cadillac” health plan tax?  I am.

I’m also sick and tired of corrupt union bosses cutting special deals with this President, and using Congress to pass new laws that will control every facet of our lives just to serve their own selfish desires and increase their union memberships.  Even their own rank and file union members can’t stand it anymore.

We’ve called, we’ve written, we’ve faxed, we’ve marched on Washington. We’ve done it all and to no avail.  The labor union corruption and abuse only gets worse – in fact, it’s the worst this country has ever seen.  The money they’ve sucked from the taxpayers and from their own union members and spent on lobbying even rivals that of the banks and insurance companies they are so fond of attacking.  What’s left to do?

Well, I took a step today.  I decided that I want nothing to do with any company that actually negotiates collective bargaining agreements with these corrupt union bosses.  If it’s a company that employs workers from any of these notoriously corrupt unions, they won’t get my business.  And if it’s one that I am forced to keep due to local monopolies (i.e. utility or gas company) or the fact that they’re a public entity (i.e. a hospital), then I will make sure those institutions hear from their many displeased taxpaying residents and consumers.

Just as corrupt union bosses will shakedown companies that are not union shops, why can’t consumers do the same to put pressure on those companies that ARE corrupt union shops?  If we don’t want these criminals taking over whatever remains of our shambles of an economy, we’re going to need to do it ourselves.   Congress and the White House have prostituted themselves out to these pimp union bosses and it’s all gone too far for them to turn back now.

So go ahead. Take charge of it yourself.  Check out this partial list of the companies (including government and other public sector employers) with labor union collective bargaining agreements registered with the Department of Labor.  Look for those that employ the biggest union offenders, like SEIU, and the others in Andy Stern and Anna Burger’s Change to Win labor coalition.  Then tell them you don’t appreciate their support for the same corrupt unions bosses who are taking our hard earned dollars from us and redistributing it to others, while they also get off tax-free with their Cadillac health care plans.

I started by not renewing my Verizon account (sorry to my brother in law…).  And instead of food shopping at my local Change to Win supported A&P, I shopped at a different supermarket. One whose workers’ union doesn’t abuse its members’ union dues to purchase Congressional votes.  One that doesn’t swindle the American people and make a mockery of our political system.   Wherever I can, I’ll make that conscious choice now.  And I feel better already.  Perhaps we should all combine forces and do it – including you union members who yourselves are tired of the abuse and corruption. That might be the only thing strong enough to actually change anything.

Download the complete list of collective bargaining agreements in PDF

View the list online at the Department of Labor website



Filed under AFSCME, andy stern, change to win, Health care, Labor Unions, SEIU, UAW, UHW, Unions

5 responses to “Want to Stop Sweetheart Deals for Corrupt Union Bosses? Stop Supporting Their Employers.

  1. As I understand it, the government now has the most union members. We can start there. In fact, with them, we the people have the power to ‘throw the bums out.’

  2. New York CWA Local Dissenters Victimized by Union Terror; File Complaint
    Submitted by Carl Horowitz on Fri, 05/28/2010 – 16:58
    Email to friendPrinter-friendlyAnyone who believes labor unions have forsaken menace as a tool to be used against internal dissent hasn’t hung around Communications Workers of America Local 1101 lately. A civil complaint filed in Brooklyn, N.Y. federal court against the Staten Island-based union this past February provides apparently damning evidence that the labor organization is run by thugs and thieves. Salvatore DiStefano and Sebastian Taravella, union members and longtime heavy equipment operators for Verizon, allege they were continuously subject to harassment and violence after reporting an illegal union time-padding scheme to the Verizon security team. The pair is seeking compensatory and punitive damages.

    According to the complaint, DiStefano, an employee of Verizon’s Staten Island Garage, in the summer of 2007 was in the presence of a first-level union supervisor, Bob Rios, who told crew members that if they performed three “fiber to premises” jobs in a given day, they could falsely put in for a full day’s pay regardless of how early they finished. DiStefano openly refused to participate in this scam. He then voiced his disapproval to fellow union members. Taravella, also a garage employee, expressed the same view. In May 2008, the pair went to Verizon’s corporate security staff, informing them of the scheme. Corporate security, however, did not keep the resulting report confidential. Big mistake.

    Outsiders might have seen DiStefano and Taravella as whistle-blowers; CWA Local 1101 saw them as rats. The union hierarchy proceeded to subject the pair to unrelenting abuse. Bosses brought them up on phony charges of “harassment” and “discrimination” against fellow members. As punishment, during or about November 2008 DiStefano and Taravella were terminated from employment at the Staten Island Garage and relocated to other garages, demoted in rank, and given “final warnings.” When the pair complained to union officials Pat Lascala and Richard Meltz, they allegedly were told, “You guys did it to yourself.” In March 2009, shop steward Manny Rincon allegedly put a dead rat in Taravella’s locker. A month later, union member Chris Tremble called DiStefano a “rat” while hitting his face and head, and leaving him with two herniated disks. DiStefano complained about the incident to union officials, who promptly accused him of “starting a fight.” DiStefano eventually was terminated in July 2009. In October 2009, a union member, Joe Sedita, threatened Taravella with death for allegedly getting a fellow employee fired. All the abuse took its toll. Taravella and DiStefano since have been undergoing counseling.

    Union officials not only took no action against acts of wrongdoing, they openly encouraged them. In November 2008, the aforementioned Richard Meltz allegedly told members to “do whatever you want with those two guys.” And at an August 2009 garage meeting, two local vice presidents, Joe Macaleer and Mike Luzzi, told rank and file that Verizon was “having a lot of problems right now ‘due to a couple of troublemakers'” and that “We have to learn that we can’t call corporate security because we don’t want those people getting involved in our business.” Macaleer allegedly stated: “I don’t want nobody in this room to call corporate security any more. [And] I don’t care if somebody come to work with a gun saying they’re going to shoot people, you don’t say anything…we have a lot of problems here due to the fact there are ‘spies in the room.'” He then added, looking directly at the plaintiffs, “You know who you are.” Finally, the complaint alleges that Macaleer told members, “(W)e have to deal with these spies on a personal level, like take them outside of the yard, off the company property and off company time and take care of them, because we can’t be ratting each other out.”

    These allegations carry more than a ring of truth. It is the nature of any racket to protect participants by creating a wall of silence and exacting vengeance upon those in their ranks violating it. Some 40 years ago New York City cops operated in this manner, inadvertently supplying the raw material for such movies as “Serpico” and “American Gangster.” All evidence strongly suggests that Communications Workers Local 1101 leaders operated an illegal featherbedding ring. That one or more Verizon employees may have taken part can’t be ruled out either. DiStefano and Taravella’s only crime was standing tall in the face of corruption and intimidation. Their lawsuit hopefully will yield a measure of justice for themselves and integrity for unions everywhere

  3. We need to take steps to put pressure on the unions, not the employers. The fact is that unions consist mainly of thugs, and most of the time, the employers do not support them. They simply have no choice – it’s either accept the unions, or go out of business.

    So if we start driving money away from businesses, then these businesses are facing pressure from unions and consumers – they are caught in the middle.

    Businesses are not equipped to deal with unions. Business’s solution to any problem is, work harder, work smarter, be more efficient – these solutions don’t work at all against people picketing your grocery store.

    We would be much better off putting pressure on lawmakers to put caps on union dues; guarantee secret ballots in union votes; insist that unions can’t collect “lump sum” dues (i.e. they may only collect from actual members); defend right-to-work; collect taxes from the unions on union dues (they are political advocacy groups! Why do they get tax breaks?); pass laws requiring unions to send quarterly financial reports to all members, etc.

    It’s not the businesses’ fault that unions have been inflicted on them, it’s OURS. Whenever union thugs picket a business, we say nothing and walk right past – the business has to deal with the unions all by themselves.

    You really want to help? Next time you see a union thug picketing somewhere, get in his face. Ask him “If you’re good at your job and willing to work hard, why do you need a union?”

    • Whoah – you need to know one thing about me: I NEVER walk right past a picketing union thug. You are dead wrong about that.

      We already do all of these things you mention, which with all due respect is a bit naive. I already do that. My groups already do all that. I do *ALL* of that. I fight against card check, I participate in every advocacy measure there is, I work on government programs to reform unions, I contact Right to Work, I even put businesses in touch with labor consultants. I was forced union for a long time, I know exactly what the deal is. I write about it on a regular basis.

      I understand what you’re trying to get at, but it takes the view that none of these other things were ever tried. It’s really not just “either accept the unions or go out of business.” Do you know how many small business owners I speak to who are too afraid to speak up because they’re afraid progressive groups might bring them bad press? One owner wanted to cut his employee benefits back by a small percentage just for 2 years during hard times but was scared to death to talk to the employees for fear they might go to the press, or worse yet, try to get a union. What the hell happened to employers actually maintaining a relationship with their employees anymore? If more would take a position, speak to their employees about it, negotiate together openly….employees wouldn’t necessarily feel a need to turn to union bullies. And more employees would be willing to stand up against union bosses who do come around trying to bully them into a union. When I tried to stand up against my impending union, too many people were afraid. No one wanted a union. Not the employees, not the employer. But they acted like cowards – they were afraid to say NO to the bullies, which the employees have every right to do, they can say NO. They complained they were going to get unionized and when I stood against the bullies, I stood alone while cowards ran and hid. And when unions wrecked the company, they complained about it and moaned how much they hated their union. People need to grow a spine. That includes BUSINESSES.

      Putting pressure on lawmakers who have no interest whatsoever in protecting the rights of the majority of workers (the OTHER 93%) is not working alone. Additional tactics are needed.

      The truth of the matter is, money also talks. More companies would stand stronger to union pressure if they felt the public was behind them. I know because they tell me this. Companies need to let the public know when they’re being threatened, and the public needs to get behind their local business. When unions bullied Whole Foods, we organized a Buycott. When unions in my area tried to bully Target, we shopped at Target and thanked them for standing strong. When unions tried to bully Toyota over the “fake” NUMMI situation, we stood by Toyota. But if a company just bends overs and allows itself to be bullied before it even gets to the point of there being any legal measure they have to follow per labor regulations, then I’m sorry, but I’m not shopping there. At least stand up while it’s legal for you to stand up. And stand up for your employees who DON’T want a union.

      What I’m doing is not really a matter of taking money away from businesses. It’s taking my business from one place to another. I do it already anyway – prices are better at non-union companies I shop at, so I stay shopping union free. That’s my choice. And unless people start speaking up about what they would prefer, the unions will keep lying and convincing others that customers WANT to shop at union companies. The truth of the matter is, most customers would prefer to shop union free, where they know the dues money isn’t corrupt and government subsidies aren’t pouring into the company.

      I hate to say it, but sometimes businesses can be as apathetic as citizens can be. We need to change that from ALL angles, not just through government pressure. Because government and union are now one in the same.

  4. Pingback: Voting With Your Wallet: Are you helping to fund America’s impending bankruptcy? | RedState

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