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Full of Sound and Fury

april15strikeAs usual, Big Labor is trying to make the most of what turned out to be mostly a non-event: the much ballyhooed April 15 strike connected with the Fight for 15 movement. Even with NBC rallying to their side and doing their best to inflate the effort, the smoke cleared quickly. In fact, one prominent union, the UFCW, is even backing away from the movement.

This may be because it is becoming more widely known that the Fight for 15 movement, along with similar efforts promoted by worker centers and supposedly “grassroots efforts,” are actually thinly veiled union PR stunts. It is also possibly because the unions are distorting “fast food data” to attempt to paint a picture that just doesn’t exist. For

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Labor Relations Ink December 2014

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In this issue:

Japanese Firm Blinks UAW Strife in the South Union Pensions on the Ropes SEIU Has Dirty Hands in Ferguson Teamsters Beat, Sticky Fingers, Insight and more…

The bottom of each story contains a link to the individual post on our site.

Note from the editor:

Due to INK releasing a week early for the holidays, we don’t have all of the data in for a complete Scoreboard. We will release a separate email with the December Scoreboard when the data is available. Have a very Merry Christmas!


Labor Relations Insight by Phil Wilson

My favorite new movie (at least until this one comes out) is Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s action-packed, has great special effects, and is a thrill

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15“A newly published National Bureau of Economics Research paper confirms what most of us already know: minimum wage increases harm the earnings and job mobility of low-skill workers.”

By looking at the effects of the 2007 to 2009 change in the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25, University of California economics professors Jeffrey Clemens and Michael Wither found that a $15 minimum wage would not only hurt the individuals it proposes to help, but would substantially reduce the national employment rate. Factual knowledge such as this does little to stop the United Food and Commercial Workers or the Service Employees from pushing onward in their jaded attempts to increase their dwindling membership numbers.

The AFL-CIO reported “an estimated 1,600 actions and strikes at Walmart locations around the country” during the Black Friday protests.

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Labor Relations Ink – August 2014

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In this issue:

Between A Rock and a Hard Place? Who’s Got Your Back? Same Song, Different Verse Bending Over Backwards SEIU Watch, Sticky Fingers, Scoreboard, Insight and more…

The bottom of each story contains a link to the individual post on our site.

Labor Relations Insight by Phil Wilson

Fast Food Strikes, the NLRB and the One Lesson of Economics


Credit: RaiseUpMKE.org

Fast food workers protested across the country today in favor of a $15 per hour minimum wage (and “union rights” – which of course they already have). It is always hard to separate the facts from

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Alt-Labor – August 2014

chargeWill we see a rise in civil disobedience – tactics such as blocking business entrances and staging sit-ins to prevent stores from transacting business? In Goldsboro, NC, a labor gathering celebrated recent “successes” of such tactics as a part of the Moral Monday demonstrations. Nearly 1000 protesters have been arrested since the demonstrations began in April 2013.

A recent fast food workers convention in Cleveland included classes on civil disobedience.

United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1208 President Keith Ludlum provided some insight into this “Charge of the Light Brigade” labor strategy:

“You guys are probably in the generation that is on the precipice of a change in the labor movement… Us old guys and some of us who have been around awhile, we can advise you on things, but don’t be

Continue reading Alt-Labor – August 2014

Labor Relations Ink June 2014

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In this issue:

A Hearty UFCW “Welcome” to New England Grocer Unions At Odds With Market Competition Big Labor Pulls a Statue of Liberty Play Democracy UAW Style SEIU Watch, Sticky Fingers, Scoreboard, Insight and more…

The bottom of each story contains a link to the individual post on our site.

Labor Relations Insight by Phil Wilson

ambush-election-coverHow to Win an Ambush Election

Today’s article has one simple purpose. I want you to download (and read) our latest White Paper How to Win (And Prevent) an Ambush Election. We just released it today. If you want to save some time you can skip reading this article and download the

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A Hearty UFCW “Welcome” to New England Grocer

mrs-greensMrs. Green’s Natural Market is an all-natural grocer with 18 stores in a New England tri-state area. They are planning their newest location in New York’s West Village, and the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 is already doing its best to make sure that doesn’t happen. Why does the union not want to bring new jobs to the area? You guessed it – none of the 18 stores are unionized.

UFCW plans to picket the store as soon as it opens, and organize what pressure it can gather from politically progressive clientele in the area to force the store to unionize.

A spokesman for the grocer released the following statement:

Mrs. Green’s Natural Market is proud of its workers and continues to invest in them – employing more full-time workers than its

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Only In A Union

sad-childCongratulations! In recognition of your outstanding work, we are going to give you a raise!

Whoops – sorry – your union (the UFCW) just took us to court and forced us to rescind the raise for you and a couple of other dozen high-performing employees. The UFCW apparently has your “best interest” in mind and doesn’t think over-and-above effort should be rewarded, so I guess mediocre will do. Since it doesn’t seem to make a difference, you should probably just punch your time clock each day and head for the house. Thanks anyway.

Union Bailout Update – April 2014

Two days of open discussion regarding the proposed Ambush Elections Rule concluded on April 11th. No surprises in the arguments presented, and we don’t expect any surprises in the final rule.

Former NLRB Chairman Peter Schaumber

Former NLRB Chairman Peter Schaumber

NLRB General Counsel Richard Griffin intends to make it unlawful for a company to relocate to escape unionized labor costs. Under his proposed change, unions will be given a veto power over an employer’s decision to move all or part of its business to another location. If implemented, the rule could be challenged in court. As former NLRB Chairman Peter Schaumber pointed out in writing for The Hill,

Decades ago, the Supreme Court made it very clear that

Continue reading Union Bailout Update – April 2014


New York City’s most recent protest for a higher minimum wage included speeches by state and local politicians (many of whom were introduced by an SEIU executive director); a throwback to the “racially charged” 1968 Memphis sanitation workers’ strike with signs that read “I AM A MAN” or “I AM A WOMAN;” and lastly, a staged mock citizens arrest of activists dressed up to represent Ronald McDonald, Colonel Sanders, Burger King, Wendy’s, and Domino’s Pizza.

Sounds like quite an event, doesn’t it. In These Times magazine called it what it was – an SEIU-orchestrated “march on the media.”


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Earlier this month, you may have caught the Los Angeles Times headline that read: “Nearly 90% of fast-food workers allege wage theft,

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