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Telling the Truth About Unions And Hurricane Sandy

photo by Dan DeLuca via Flikr
Have you heard the story about non-union utility crews getting turned away, after Hurricane Sandy?

The story isn’t true – but it’s still being spread.

It started before the election.  The story spread so far and so fast that five utility companies issued public statements saying it wasn’t true.

A full week later, the story was still being spread – by an anti-union newspaper, the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Does this remind you of anything?  Maybe Mitt Romney’s infamous allegations about Jeep moving production to China?  Again, that story was immediately and thoroughly debunked – by the company – but Romney’s campaign kept spreading it, through television and radio ads.

Truth? Romney’s pollster said it didn’t matter:  “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.”

Yes, there’s a connection here.  Romney’s campaign was funded by many of the same people and corporations that have invested millions in the “union avoidance” industry.  Take a few minutes and read this analysis of the 2010 electionsIt’s the very same players, now:

  • Karl Rove, of election night meltdown fame, toured the country in 2009 opposing the Employee Free Choice Act;
  •  “Americans for Job Security” is a secretive group run out of a mail-drop box in a UPS store, but they spend millions on false advertising attacking candidates who support labor unions;
  •  “Americans for Prosperity” is run by the Koch brothers, spends tens of millions on misleading ads; and in 2009 sponsored a multi-state publicity tour opposing the Employee Free Choice Act;
  • and the list goes on, and on.

The “union-avoidance” industry doesn’t care about the truth – it just cares about results.  Haven’t heard of the industry before?  Read more about it here and here.

Looking for the truth about how labor unions responded to Hurricane Sandy?
  Read more here and here, and updates on the Teamster’s blog here.


[Top image of ConEd workers is by Dan DeLuca via Flickr/Creative Commons]


Mitt Romney’s Auto Industry

Rally in Manchester tomorrow — Monday, November 5th — details below!

So, is Mitt Romney lying – or just confused?

Last week, Mitt Romney told a whopper:  he said that Jeep is “thinking of moving all their production to China.”

That’s not true.   Chrysler’s CEO immediately set the record straight: the company has no intention of shifting production of Jeep models out of North America.

But dig deeper behind the headlines, and you will find an auto industry company that is planning to ship production to China.  An auto-parts company based in Freeport, Illinois plans to close its factory in December 2012 and ship all 170 jobs to China.  Right now, the company is threatening its employees with an immediate shut-down, unless the workers stop protesting the decision to close the plant.  So far, employees have filed two unfair labor practice complaints against the company with the National Labor Relations Board.

That company, Sensata, is controlled by Bain Capital.  According to press reports, Mitt Romney owns about $8 million worth of the Bain fund that controls Sensata.

So yes, on one level, Mitt Romney is right: American auto industry jobs ARE being sent to China.  But not by Chrysler.  It’s Bain Capital that is sending even MORE jobs overseas.

So maybe Romney didn’t really mean to lie last week.  He apparently has multiple investments in the auto industry (read more about his Delphi investment, below).  Maybe he just got confused about which company was shifting production overseas.


Appearing in tomorrow’s edition of The Nation magazine:

Mitt Romney’s Bailout Bonanza

“Mitt Romney’s opposition to the auto bailout has haunted him on the campaign trail … But Romney has done a good job of concealing, until now, the fact that he and his wife, Ann, personally gained at least $15.3 million from the bailout…”

“It all starts with Delphi Automotive, a former General Motors subsidiary whose auto parts remain essential to GM’s production lines. … in addition to making massive loans to automakers in 2009, the federal government sent, directly or indirectly, more than $12.9 billion to Delphi—and to the hedge funds that had gained control over it.”

Read the complete article here.

The UAW is holding a rally in Manchester tomorrow, to draw attention to Mitt Romney’s profiteering off of federal bailout money.  You can join the UAW and other guests on Monday, November 5th starting at 2:30 pm at 40 Lake Avenue in Manchester.

Read more here and here.


 Learn more about what is happening at Sensata, in this YouTube video:


Clint Eastwood Super Bowl Ad: Its Halftime America

While some people were watching the Super Bowl for the football others watch just for the ads.  There were many Ads that were funny while some pushed a political message.  Last year the Chrysler Corporation started a new campaign to help revitalize the American Auto Industry.  Some of you may remember the commercial titled “Imported From Detroit”.  The video (below) talked about how hard Detroit and the Auto Industry had been hit and we need to get back to buying American Made cars.  While you watch this video, see if you can pick out some of the Union images embedded in the video.

Imported from Detroit 2011

Did you see them? I will give you a hint, one of them is the mural that is one the lobby wall of the AFL-CIO building in Washington DC.  If you found more, leave a comment below and share with everyone.

Durning SB46, Clint Eastwood teamed up with Chrysler to create “Its Halftime In America” (below).  This video was a little more pointed than “Imported from Detroit”.  He talks about how had the recession has been on all Americans, but the game is only half over.  Eastwood says “we are all scared because this is not a game”.  We need to look at places like Detroit and the Auto Industry to see how we can work together to rebuild America.  “We all rallied together and acted as One” Eastwood continued.  Personally my favorite line is: “America cannot be knocked out with one punch, we get right back up again. And when we do the world is going to hear the roar of our engine…..”

Eastwood and Chrysler are right, we need to work together not against each other to Rebuild America.  Bring manufacturing back to the US. “It Halftime America, And The Second Half Is About To BEGIN!”

Its Halftime In America

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