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Fri Jun 29, 2018, 07:55 PM

*Dagger to Hearts of Workers & Democracy* JANUS Supreme Ct. Ruling, Real Story

- A Dagger in the Heart of Workers and Our Democracy: What's Behind the Janus Court Ruling. Make no mistake, this is the oligarchy at work to undermine the common good in the name of profit and unfettered power,- By Bonnie Castillo, Thursday, June 28, 2018, Common Dreams. *EXCERPTS:

The Supreme Court’s transparent effort to decapitate public sector unions in its 5-4 Janus vs. AFSCME decision on Wednesday places a wide swath of public health and safety protections in its crosshairs as well. By encouraging public workers to withdraw any financial support for the union’s considerable cost for representing them, the court’s corporate-aligned majority hopes to financially paralyze unions, leaving all its members and non-members alike vulnerable to employer retaliation if they act to defend the interests of the public as well as their own well being.

For registered nurses, the collective power of a strong union, such as National Nurses United, gives RNs the ability to challenge healthcare employers when they seek to slash patient services, close hospitals, or carry out unsafe practices, such as inadequate staffing, to pad profit margins and revenues...Many unions, like NNU, have been preparing for this widely expected ruling for months, emphasizing the public need for strong unions against the growing corporate and right wing assault on workers’ collective voice. As United Electrical Workers president Peter Knowlton aptly pointed out in response to Janus, the biggest threat to workers is not their union or unified co-workers, it’s their employer...

One telling hint of who’s behind the curtain came shortly after the Janus ruling and the follow up announcement that Justice Anthony Kennedy is retiring...Less reported was an announcement from the Koch network that it would chip in at least $1 million to confirm any judge “in the mold of Justice Gorsuch.” The Koch’s chilling agenda, and all the tentacles they influence, is extensively spelled out by historian Nancy MacLean in her seminal work *"DEMOCRACY IN CHAINS: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America."*Collective action, represented by unions at their best, is a principle target. So is everyone who stands in the way of wealthy corporations and the super rich. Their end game is to overturn the fundamental premise of majority rule, and lock in place permanent Constitutional changes to bar any limits on their oligarchical rule.

*Evidence of their work is everywhere: Voter suppression laws enacted in dozens of states; Partisan gerrymandering to protect and expand the hold on Congress; Expansion of anti-union right-to-work laws that mirror the Janus ruling in the private sector; New laws to restrict public protest, to pre-empt local governments from progressive challenges to corporate and rightwing power, and the legal ability of people to challenge corporate power in the courts; and Decimating the ability of government to provide for public health, safety and economic security, including through attacks on common good programs like Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, workplace safety, and environmental programs.
>To this crowd, as MacLean notes, no public program or collective action is legitimate, if it can or has the potential to interfere with “liberty,” by which they mean unbridled authority and wealth accumulation for the elite and the super rich. Some call it the “full liability society” – you’re on your own, for everything...con't.

But there’s a darker underbelly to this threat, symbolized not just by Janus, but also by a steady stream of court decisions and actions in Congress and many states, all increasingly under the sway of anti-democratic and anti-union forces, like the Koch brothers, and other corporate and rightwing groups, that handpick legislators and judges to do their bidding.>>It’s a dagger pointed at the heart of our nation, and our democracy.

Union activists & supporters rally against the Supreme Court's ruling in the Janus v. AFSCME case, in Foley Square in Lower Manhattan, June 27, 2018 in New York City. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Ct. ruled on Wed. that public employee unions cannot require non-members to pay fees. The ruling will have significant financial impacts for organized labor.
*IN CONTRAST: "Trump’s Trade Fight With Canada Highlights Two Approaches To Capitalism, " June 24, '18, Huff Post.

"Dig a little deeper and you appreciate that Canada and the U.S. have rather different economic and social systems and different approaches to capitalism. Both nations have forms of managed capitalism; neither practices laissez faire. But Canada’s, by design, serves ordinary people more equitably. America’s system is increasingly managed in the self-interest of the very rich. >Here are a few key differences.
*Canada has much stronger unions. In the 1950s, both Canada and the U.S. had union membership rates of about 35 percent. After six decades of union-bashing by employers, the American private sector unionization rate has been cut to around 6 percent, while Canada enforces worker rights and its union level is basically unchanged. That, in turn, influences living standards.*
Canada also recovered more quickly from the global financial collapse of 2008 because the Canadians insisted on a well–regulated banking system while the other G-7 nations were going on a deregulation binge. And Canada of course has a universal health insurance system, as well as a lot more, well-run affordable social housing. Canada has its problems, to be sure, but one of them is not U.S.-style inequality. A classic book on the subject, Dan Zuberi’s Differences That Matter (2006), compared the working poor in service-sector jobs in Vancouver and Seattle. These are two very similar cities, but for the fact that one is in the U.S. and the other is in Canada."

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Reply *Dagger to Hearts of Workers & Democracy* JANUS Supreme Ct. Ruling, Real Story (Original post)
appalachiablue Jun 2018 OP
Iliyah Jun 2018 #1
appalachiablue Jun 2018 #2

Response to appalachiablue (Original post)

Fri Jun 29, 2018, 08:16 PM

1. I think it will make the unions stronger. But this time

Only represent the workers that pay dues. I'm pretty sure the unions have been planning for plan B for a while. Unions get enough workers joining or staying in the unions they can keep their clout.

And not all business or corporations want to be union free. There always is a up side.

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Response to Iliyah (Reply #1)

Fri Jun 29, 2018, 08:36 PM

2. Glad to hear that, it's reassuring in view of this stark but realistic article.

As pointed out in the Huff Po piece above, Canada retains about the same amount of unions as we also had decades ago. And Germany's mandated unionization level is high. It doesn't have to be this way in the US, which most people don't realize from ignorance, apathy or propaganda. The sad, frustrating truth.

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