Thursday, June 30, 2011

End of June NLRB overreach round up

Boeing HQ, Chicago
When I started doing these NLRB-Boeing entries, the chill of April (I'm in Illinois) was still in the air. And now June ends--but the overreach continues.

From The Hill:

President Obama broke his silence Wednesday on the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) controversial complaint against Boeing, implicitly criticizing the decision.

In measured comments, Obama said he didn't know all of the facts behind the action of the independent board and noted that it must work its way through the legal process.

But as a general proposition, Obama said, "Companies need to have the freedom to relocate — they have to follow the law, but that's part of our system.

"What I think defies common sense would be a notion that we would be shutting down a plant or laying off workers because labor and management can't come to a sensible agreement."
Of course the sensible agreement would be to let Boeing build the 787 Dreamliner where it wants to.

The Charleston Post and Courier:

The NLRB case -- which could drag on for years -- has become an unwanted distraction for Obama as he tries to mend relations with the business community and contend with polls that show growing public disapproval over his handling of the economy.

It makes an easy target for Republicans, who call it a case of government overreaching at a time when the private sector is struggling to create new jobs. And it's a major story in South Carolina -- a bellwether early primary state in the GOP presidential race. Candidates are lining up to impress voters and the state's Republican governor, tea party favorite Nikki Haley.

"Obama's NLRB has united the Republican Party and turned this government agency into a political piƱata," GOP consultant Scott Reed said. "Boeing spent a billion dollars building a plant to create thousands of jobs and it looks like the NLRB stuck their nose in and tried to pull the rug out."

Business groups and their GOP allies say the government is interfering with the right of company managers to choose where and how to expand business operations. Boeing claims it opened the plant for a variety of economic reasons, but NLRB officials said Boeing executives made public comments showing the move was meant to punish union workers for costly strikes.
The Washington Examiner:

During his press conference, President Obama just dodged a question about whether the suit filed by the National Labor Relations Board against Boeing was contributing to a bad regulatory environment that was hurting businesses.

The complaint against Boeing for building a nonunion factory in South Carolina was filed by Obama's appointed (but unconfirmed) pick for general counsel, Lafe Solomon, but Obama hasn't directly addressed the suit.

Asked about it today, he declared "It's an independent agency" and said he didn't want to comment because it would ultimately be decided by a judge. Yes, this is the same Obama who scolded the Supreme Court during his State of the Union speech.

Obama then went into a long-winded answer about how businesses should have the right to choose to relocate and that we don't want factories shutting down and putting people out of work.
The Daily Caller:

Last week, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) proposed a new rule that, if implemented, will make hiring workers in America more difficult for businesses. The proposed rule would allow union bosses to hold workplace elections less than two weeks after announcing them.

Unions typically spend 6-8 months campaigning secretly for unionization. Under current law, employees and employers have 38 days to consider and debate whether employees are better off with or without a union. The proposed rule would shorten this to as few as 10 days. This would rush employees into voting and deny employers enough time to make their case that employees are not better off with a union. This is not just an ambush on business, but also on basic electoral principles.

These proposed "quickie elections" are not about helping workers make informed decisions. In fact, these elections would accomplish exactly the opposite.

The impact of this decision in clear: American businesses will have yet another reason to invest elsewhere rather than in creating new jobs here at home.
On right-to-work states, Investor's Business Daily:

It seems to be a good deal for the workers, too. The U.S. unemployment rate is 9.1%. In right-to-work states the average is 7.9% — 8.6% adjusted for population.

Between 1977-08, employment grew 100% in right-to-work states vs. the national average of 71% and 56.5% in non-right-to-work states. That's according to a January study that Ohio University economics professor Richard Vedder did for the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.

In this period, real per capita income in the right-to-work states grew 62.3% vs. the national average of 54.7% and 52.8% for non-right-to-work states.
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