“Don’t take any prisoners. Make sure you bring them to the pols screaming, yelling, crying-whatever the case may be.”
This, as written by Andrea Ganger for The times Weekly dated Oct. 28- Nov.3, was uttered by Secretary of State Jessie White.
” We have gotten so much accomplished. We had the entire House. We had the Senate. Blah, blah, blah…, Bush/Chaney administration took 17 trillion of personal wealth. They put 1 million people out of their homes. Blah, blah, blah…”
Thank you Debbie Halvorson. We’ll hear from A.J. Wilhelmi next.
“At the end of the day, we have to go to bat for our working families here in Will county. A LIVING WAGE – so that people can raise a family and go to work and feel proud and dignified in what they do and who they support – their wives, their children and their grandparents.” ( F.Y.I.- Federal minimum wage is 7.25hr, while Illinois is 8.25hr.)
Thank you Senator.
Governor Quinn, anything to add? “You tell them you’re voting for public servants who understand that their job is to serve the PUBLIC. Not to serve themselves, not to serve Wall Street. Not to serve Washington insiders.” He also wishes to note that Illinois has seen a greater job increase than any other state.
And now we’ll hear from the plaintiff.
Labor Law Is Broken, Economist SaysBy STEVEN GREENHOUSE
In a new paper, Richard B. Freeman, a labor economist at Harvard, said he had some “harsh and impolitic” news for the National Labor Relations Act on its 75th anniversary. He declared that the law “has become an anachronism irrelevant for most workers and firms.”
Mr. Freeman released his paper in Washington on Thursday at a symposium that marked the anniversary of the New Deal law – often known as the Wagner Act – that gave American workers a federally protected right to form unions. He called his paper “What Can We Learn from N.L.R.A. to Create Labor Law for the 21st Century?”
Mr. Freeman, one of the nation’s foremost labor economists, wrote that the act was passed to replace the costly unionization fights of yesteryear – often involving strikes, lockouts, violent confrontations — with “a ‘laboratory conditions’ elections process for ascertaining workers’ attitudes toward union representation that would be free from employer pressures or dishonest statements by employers or unions.” He said unionization elections in the private-sector “have turned into massive employer campaigns against unions.”
That, he wrote, is a major reason the percentage of private-sector workers in unions has fallen to 7 percent, down from nearly 40 percent in the 1950s.
He argued that the penalties in the National Labor Relations Act were weak and “have failed to deter firms from illegal actions to prevent unionization.” He wrote that in the early 1950s firms fired about 0.5 workers for every 100 workers who voted in N.L.R.B. elections, but in the 1980s and early 1990s, firms “fired 4.5 workers for every 100 union voters,” with that percentage dropping slightly in recent years.
“Far from a laboratory conditions experiment in democracy,” he wrote, “the N.L.R.B. process turned into the same costly fight between unions and firms that union organizing was before the act, albeit in a different venue with different weapons.” He wrote that the N.L.R.B. process has “failed to make it easy or natural for workers who want union representation to achieve this goal.”
He noted that there was a 20 to 30 percent gap between the percentage of workers who said they wanted union representation and those who had unions – the largest gap among advanced English-speaking countries.
Professor Freeman pointed to one study that found that unions found it so hard to organize workers under the N.L.R.B. process that around 80 percent of new organizing in the late 1980s and 1990s occurred outside that process. This usually happened among government employees who were not covered by the National Labor Relations Act, or by private-sector unions that mounted pressure campaigns to persuade employers to accept unions through the card check process – under which unions are recognized when a majority of workers sign cards favoring a union.
Professor Freeman said it was hardly surprising that the percentage of public-sector workers in unions was five times as high as the percentage of private-sector workers.
One big reason for this, he wrote, is that private-sector employers “have sizable monetary incentives to oppose unionism,” and the penalties that N.L.R.B. “has at its disposal are too limited to offset these incentives.” He noted that government officials, unlike corporate officials, have generally not fought unionization because “they have little to gain and much to lose from fighting unions.”
“Unions,” he added “are an important ally in helping politicians and public-sector management convince voters to increase taxes or borrow money through bonds for schools, police or other public goods.”
For instance, if a company illegally fires the three employee leaders of a unionization drive, the law requires the company to pay back pay, minus whatever earnings the workers had after being fired. The law does not call for fines or punitive damages for such firings.
Mr. Freeman pointed to a case involving a unionization effort at Yale-New Haven Hospital, where an independent arbitrator ruled in 2007 that the hospital had violated an agreement calling for both sides to respect principles aimed at guaranteeing a fair election. The arbitrator wrote that the workers “ were threatened with more onerous working conditions and even loss of their jobs if the union were selected.”
She said the workers were victimized and ordered the hospital to pay the 1,700 workers a total $2.2 million – the amount the hospital had paid to antiunion consultants. She also ordered the hospital to repay the union its $2.3 million in organizing expenses. Professor Freeman noted that this $4.5 million penalty, which was ordered outside the National Labor Relations Act, was 20 percent more than the $3.6 million that the labor board awards on average each year to all workers nationwide for all back pay for being retaliated against for supporting a union. He cited a paper by Morris M. Kleiner and David Weil stating that “the Act for decades has been ineffective in curbing behaviors that are antithetical to its fundamental aims.”
Professor Freeman wrote that “the failure of the N.L.R.A. process to meet the needs of workers and firms moved the U.S. close to the union-free world that many opponents of trade unions have long desired.”
He suggested that if unions were stronger, the United States might not have the highest income inequality in the developed world or stagnant real earnings for all but the highest paid. He also said that if unions were stronger, a liberal coalition “would presumably have greater countervailing power” to Wall Street and have helped push through stronger financial reforms.
In conclusion, Professor Freeman had four recommendations. He called for strengthening the penalties against illegal actions by management and unions, recommending penalties against individual managers or union leaders who break the law. Second, he said labor laws should be amended to protect supervisors from being fired or punished if they want to remain neutral or silent and not have to express their firm’s anti-union views during an organizing drive.
Third, he called for early voting at neutral venues instead of having unionization elections held at the work site on a single day. Borrowing from an idea of Benjamin Sachs, a professor at Harvard Law School, he wrote that the idea resembled early voting in regular elections. The labor board could set up a polling place where workers could vote at any time during the organizing drive or could set up a confidential mail-in procedure.
He said this “should reduce intimidation or pressure from management or union activists on workers to vote for against union representation by allowing employees to vote outside the confines of the workplace at a time of their own choosing.” Many corporations oppose a more rapid electoral process, arguing that it would not give them adequate time to communicate their case against unions.
Lastly, Professor Freeman recommends an idea that union leaders hate — allowing employers to set up employee committees that address not just productivity, but also issues that deal with workers’ well-being, like hours or pace of work. “Throughout the advanced world works councils perform this function, usually with members elected by employees, independent of collective bargaining,” he wrote.
He added that “American employers who want their workers to have some representation at their workplace that falls short of collective bargaining” should be able to do so without having to break the law. He said that a similar system in Canada works well.
He noted that many American employers were already doing this even though the law bans it. Moreover, it would help give union-less workers more of a voice on the job. But unions oppose this idea, asserting that it could lead to management-dominated committees and could convince many workers that they do not need a union.
The symposium was cosponsored by the National Labor Relations Board and George Washington University.
Do you NOW, mr. white, ms. halvorson, mr. wilhelmi and mr. quinn, understand the charges brought forth to you by the citizens of Illinois here today?
According to our records, this has been ignored by all of you, collectively, for some time now. You were first made aware of the situation during a strike at the Elwood intermodal. And this was merely a photo-op. Then there was a follow-up. This was nothing more than a “MIXER”, billed as “Meet the candidates”. And still nothing! Is this a matter of ignorance on your part, or were you simply too busy giving yourselves raise after raise, to be bothered with doing your jobs???
You have your UNIONS, with full pensions, paid for by us the citizens of Illinois, and yet these jobs you have brought us are minimum wage- below poverty -with OUR unions being withheld ILLEGALY. How could you expect us to even THINK of voting you back into office? How much longer do you expect us to just simply survive, so that you could reap the benefits of our labor?
Any rebuttal?? I think so!!
I think we’ve all heard enough.
The jury will now vote!
SEIU local 1 goes on the attack at McDonalds in Joliet Illinois, while SEIU local 1 promoting the democrat party’s Debbie Halvorson and AJ Wilhelmi there was an altercation between one of Joliet Illinois homeless person and 3 SEIU local 1 members, the SEIU member wanted the Joliet homeless man to fill out paper work that was clearly not his for voting in the up coming election for $10.00, KG the homeless man was standing his ground while fighting the 3 SEIU members..KG must be an honest man, I as a republican and a voter would like to thank him for standing up for American truth and morals.
Even though KG hasn’t any home to live in, he has pride and is honest. While speaking with KG I found out that he has been unemployed for 18 months and has been looking everyday walking sometimes up to 20-25 miles per day.
Remember Voters of Joliet and Will County Illinois these are the same people that raise your taxes every year and profit highly from your labor.
What many do not know here in Will County Illinois, local politicians have made deals to look the other way by creating hiring sites of their own “these sites are not for American Workers”. They hope to pacify the Mexican community, they don’t want to offend Illegal alien advocacy groups that get them voters, will county is Permitting the aliens allowing them to create hidden hiring halls on behalf of the aliens. When Local governments are operating hiring halls they claim that they are not employers or recruiters and therefore are not required to verify the employment status of workers.
Most importantly, local government officials must operate in the open and hold open hearings about local issues, yet they do not, they have outside meetings not notifying the public of their crooked deals.
These are the Incumbents that while your working to break your back earning a living, they are making side deals to screw you and giving away what you have paid in to their friends and family.
District 1John Anderson, MoneeKatrina Deutsche, Crete
Cory Singer, Frankfort
Jim Moustis – County Board Chairman, Frankfort
Laurie Smith, New Lenox
Tom Weigel, New Lenox
Ann Dralle, Lemont
Laurie McPhillips, Plainfield
Michael Wisniewski, Naperville
Edward D. Kusta, Jr. – Majority Whip, Bolingbrook
Charles Maher, Naperville
Jacqueline Traynere, Bolingbrook
James Blackburn, Joliet
Lee Ann Goodson, Plainfield
Brian Smith, Plainfield
Don Gould, Shorewood
Sharon May, Channahon
Deborah Rozak, Wilmington
Jim Bilotta – Majority Leader, Lockport
Kathleen Konicki, Homer Glen
Diane Seiler, Lockport
Herbert Brooks, Jr., Joliet
Frank Stewart – Minority Whip, Joliet
Denise Winfrey, Joliet
Walter Adamic – Minority Leader, Joliet
Joseph Babich, Joliet
Steve Wilhelmi, Joliet
City Hall will do what’s best for them only, We are “selling off” jobs no matter the cost, from the public in subsidies and giveaways.Anything except deal with the problems our officials have created. This is very dangerous for the future of the city and county residents.Decisions about city business are being made by outside groups what are the City commissioners doing are they part of the system, not independent citizen watchdogs as they are supposed to be.Do we make Objections on principle or is it law ignored.
The bureaucracy has been politicized to the point that they put their jobs on the line with their crooked back door deals and policies that serve only their interest.We could improve and change City Hall, but first voters must elect new and honest candidates who care about Joliet and Will County Illinois and not their pockets.
WHAT ARE POLLWATCHERS? The great majority of election officials are honest and dedicated; however, even the most honest election officials can make mistakes. Pollwatchers sometimes referred to as challengers, checkers or simply watchers, are election observers who aid in ensuring the free and fair conduct of elections. Pollwatchers may be in the polling place before the polls open, during the actual voting hours, and after the polls close. WHAT ARE THE QUALIFICATIONS NECESSARY TO BECOME A POLLWATCHER? A pollwatcher must be registered to vote in the state of Illinois and must be affiliated with the party or organization he/she is representing. WHO AUTHORIZES AN INDIVIDUAL TO BECOME A POLLWATCHER? Pollwatchers may represent established political parties, candidates, qualified organization of citizens, State nonpartisan civic organizations, or organized proponents or opponents of ballot propositions. Each pollwatcher must have credentials issued by the election authority, and these credentials must be presented by the pollwatcher to the election judges immediately upon entering the polling place. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE SPECIFIC RIGHTS OF POLLWATCHERS? • Before the first ballot is cast, pollwatchers may observe that the ballot box is empty; • Pollwatchers may position themselves near enough to the election judges to examine the applications for ballot; • Pollwatchers may observe as the judges compare the voter applicant’s signature on the application with the signature on the registration records; • Pollwatchers may watch as the judges initial and distribute the ballots to voter, and as the ballots are deposited into the ballot box after the voter has voted; • Pollwatchers may challenge a person’s right to vote. A reason for the challenge must be stated. (Possible reasons include; the person voted earlier in the day, the person moved, or the person lacks qualifications); • The judges of election determine whether or not to sustain a challenge; • Pollwatchers may observe the counting procedures after the polls close. WHAT SHOULD A POLLWATCHER DO IF HE OBSERVES AN ADMINISTRATIVE ERROR OR SEES AN APPARENT VIOLATION ON THE PART OF ELECTION JUDGES OR VOTERS? The pollwatcher should politely inform the election judges if he observes an error or an apparent violation. If the error or violation continues, the pollwatcher should record his/her observations, immediately contact the election authority and remain at the polling place until proper authorities arrive. Under no circumstances should a pollwatcher argue with the election judges or interfere with the election process. IS THERE A LIMIT TO THE NUMBER OF POLLWATCHERS ALLOWED IN A POLLING PLACE? Yes, the number of pollwatchers allowed in the polling place at any one time is limited by law. A candidate may always appoint two pollwatchers per precinct, while all other organizations may only appoint one pollwatcher per precinct. The only exception to this is that political parties may appoint two pollwatchers per precinct at each General and Consolidated General Election. When over-crowding interferes with the orderly conduct of the election, the judges of election may limit the number of pollwatchers. The election judges may cause the removal of any pollwatcher who is disrupting the election process REMEMBER….. Pollwatchers are official observers only. They may observe the conduct of the election before, during, and after the polls close. All pollwatchers must present valid credentials upon entering the polling place. The judges of elections are the sole authority in the polling place on election day. No person, except a judge, may handle or touch election supplies and materials. A police officer may be in the polling place to preserve order and carry out lawful directions given by the judges. Electioneering or any type of campaigning must not take place within the Campaign Free Zone. The publication A Guide for Pollwatchers outlines the necessary qualifications and responsibilities of pollwatchers. The pamphlet, Preventing Vote Fraud spells out some telltale signs of possible voting irregularities that should be reported to the election judges and/or election authorities. Where ballots are counted in the office of the election authority, each political party, candidate, qualified organization of citizens, State nonpartisan civic organizations, or organized proponents or opponents of ballot propositions shall be entitled to have one pollwatcher for each panel of election judges. Pollwatchers shall be permitted to observe all proceedings and view all reasonably requested records relating to the conduct of the election, provided the secrecy of the ballot is not impinged. Pollwatchers may be appointed to observe early voting by personal appearance at each permanent and temporary polling place where early voting is conducted. The primary goal of the State Board of Elections is to help bring about greater understanding and participation in the electoral process. For more information on election laws and procedures, write or call the State Board of Elections State Board of Elections 1020 South Spring Street Springfield, Illinois 62704 217/782-4141 TDD 217/782-1518 100 West Randolph, Suite 14-100 Chicago, Illinois 60601 312/814-6440 TDD 312/814-6431 Printed by Authority of the State of Illinois http://www.elections.il.gov FY08-5-5000-10-07 Illinois Pollwatchers Their rights and limitations Illinois law provides for pollwatchers to be present in the polling place during an election. Pollwatchers are intended to observe the conduct of the election and their prime concern is the integrity and fairness of the election.
The plan from local organizers of the Mexican voters plan to spend $513,000 over the next four weeks to do whatever it takes to deliver some 33,000 immigrants in IL-10 and IL-11 to their polling places.
Many sees the campaign as an opportunity to put Illegal alien sympathizers hopefuls in or keep them in office. Nearly-25,815 voter registrations!
in ‘2010 you’re going to see people going out to the polls in record numbers because people know what’s at stake the Illegal’s ability to continue to rip-off the system and divert the paying of the cost to Joliet and Will County Illinois residents and American jobs.