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The Lame Ducks: Union bosses gone green over Cap & Trade

How "green" union bosses have sold their members out.

If you haven’t caught this yet, you may want to sit down for a moment.  After you’re done reading this, you should go to NoLameDuckTax.com.  Now here’s why:

The Obama Administration may be plotting to foist “Cap & Tax” on hard-working Americans (and their employers) after the mid-term elections, but before the new Congress gets sworn in [via Politico]:

The plan is to conference the new Senate bill with the already-passed House bill IN A LAME-DUCK SESSION AFTER THE ELECTION, so House members don’t have to take another tough vote ahead of midterms.

A White House aide has the official word: “President Obama reiterated his call for comprehensive energy and climate legislation to break our dependence on oil and fossil fuels. In the coming weeks he will be reaching out to Senators on both sides of the aisle to chart a path forward. A number of proposals have been put forward from Members on both sides of the aisle. We’re open to good ideas from all sources, and will be working with Senators on a comprehensive proposal. The tragedy in the Gulf underscores the need to move quickly, and the President is committed to finding the votes for comprehensive energy legislation this year.”

So, it seems the fix is in (Chicago-style) to use President Obama’s red-tape enhanced BP oil spill as the let-no-good-crisis-go-to-waste crisis to shove the economy-killing Cap & Tax onto America during the lame-duck session following the mid-terms.

The question that must be raised is why are today’s union bosses clamoring for this legislation when they know it will kill jobs–many that are union jobs?

Waxman-Markey affects some industries more than others. Some industries are undoubtedly more energy-intensive and thus hit harder by higher energy prices. Particularly alarming is the damage that Waxman-Markey inflicts on America’s manufacturing base. By 2035, the last year of the simulation, durable manufacturing employment will have lost 1.17 million jobs. Nondurable manufacturing losses reach almost 210,000 jobs by 2035. Combined, manufacturing employment averages 389,000 less than the baseline between 2012 and 2035, hitting a high of 1.38 million lost jobs in 2035

Other industries experience the effects of higher energy prices as well. The fabricated-metal industry will see jobs drop by an average of more than 51,000 below the baseline and 216,000 below by 2035. The machinery industry will shed 263,000 jobs by 2035. Plastic and rubber products employment falls 33,000 jobs below the baseline on average as a result of Waxman-Markey and is 80,000 below business-as-usual in 2035, the last year of the simulation. The employment-services industry faces substantial losses, reaching 428,000 in 2035 and averaging 93,000 fewer jobs than the baseline from 2012 to 2035.

The union job-losses seem clear.  However, what is not so clear is why have union bosses gone ‘all-in’ when they know their members will be hurt? …Unless there’s been a bait and switch that has been sold to union members.

In essence, the AFL-CIO storyline is pretty basic: Your company may close and you may lose your job here, but we’ve got a deal for a new union job in the new, yet-to-be-developed ‘green economy’…maybe.

The Obama administration has estimated 5 million jobs (direct and indirect) can be created by a $150 billion, 10-year investment. Green Jobs for America reports that hybrid and other clean cars, public transportation, efficient heating and lighting systems and clean renewable power plants can create more than 1.4 million new jobs.

Investments in improved energy efficiency in buildings could generate an additional 2 million to 3.5 million green jobs in Europe and the United States alone. Clean-tech start-ups alone might generate between 400,000 jobs and 500,000 jobs in coming years. [Emphasis added.]

And, of course, here’s where the union bosses get the green

There are important standards that should be considered to be part of any jobs stimulus package. Examples include:

  • Neutrality in any union organizing campaign.
  • Comprehensive Davis-Bacon prevailing wage coverage applied to all facets of federal construction assistance.
  • Bona fide apprenticeship programs with a record of compliance with apprenticeship hiring requirements.
  • Joint labor-management partnerships.
  • Health and retirement benefits.
  • Employer-based training, including on-the-job training and skill upgrading.
  • A record of compliance with federal laws including prevailing wage laws, OSHA, anti-discrimination/harassment and environmental.
  • Compliance by subcontractors.

Of course, while there may be new union construction jobs that could be created on a wind farm in West Virginia or Pennsylvania, that may be little comfort for the mineworkers who lose their jobs, or the oil-rig workers who become unemployed in the gulf.  While there may be new “clean technology” jobs that could open up in Nancy Pelosi’s district, it won’t help the Indiana factory worker who becomes unemployed when his factory closes.

No worries though.  The union bosses will be sure to get their dues.

And that, it seems, is where union members have been led down the garden path.

Dan Benishek, a GOP candidate running in MI-1, is fighting to stop the Obama administration from passing ‘Capt & Tax’ during a lame-duck session.  He’s got a petition on NoLameDuckTax.com that you can sign to help put a stop to this insanity.

By the way, Benishek’s opponent in the GOP primary appears to be the SEIU’s candidate of choice.

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“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.” Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776

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