On the surface, one might think that a black eye on the UAW for getting beat in Tennessee was the big story. It's not. The big story is what happens next:
No wonder they wanted card check: I remember, toward the end of the last Bush administration, whippersnappers all the confident young Dem policy warriors repeating labor’s talking points about the need to allow the secret ballot in union recognition elections to be replaced by “card check,” a system in which workers sign cards in the presence of union organizers. Without card check, management would “coerce” workers by pointing out the downside of unionization in mandatory propaganda meetings.
Wasn’t it possible that workers who turned down unions simply looked at what Wagner Act unionism had done, say, to Detroit, and decided for themselves that this wasn’t what they wanted to happen to their company? Nah.
Now we know different: At Vokswagen’s Chattanooga factory, the UAW was actually welcomed by the employer. No union-busting propganada sessions. VW, which already has a powerful union back home in Europe, wanted to set up German-style “works councils,” where rank and file employees could have a say in production decisions. But, according to many U.S. labor lawyers, it needed a union partner — otherwise, under the Wagner Act the works councils would be considered an illegal “company union.” The UAW seemed ready to be that partner. UAW organizers were allowed in the plant to make their case. Management didn’t argue back.**
The most interesting part comes next: If Volkswagen now goes ahead and starts its works councils anyway, without the UAW, will organized labor sue to have them declared illegal? That would give the Roberts Court a precious opportunity to interpret the Wagner Act in a way that actually allows non-legalistic, non-adversarial forms of worker participation in management (despite the “company union” prohibition). In effect, the courts could help VW create what those on the left have been (correctly) demanding of the right: a reasonable alternative to traditional unionism, giving workers a voice without subjecting every management decision to a war of bargainers and lawyers and (ultimately) the formalized pitched battle of a strike.
Now that would be a threat to Big Labor. Which is why they might not sue.
**–Though local politicians, like Sen. Bob Corker, did. President Obama sided with the UAW, at least behind closed doors.
***–The cards apparently contained distracting language about wanting to join VW’s works council. If the union did have a majority of cards, of course, it has now provided us with a near-textbook example of the difference between a) a secret ballot and b) signing a piece of paper in the presence of union representatives.
So if VW moves forward, and sets up the Works Councils, the UAW has a choice to make: Do nothing, and appear weak to your members (and other organizations that have UAW members working there), or sue, and quite possibly lose.
Are there any limits to what the President can do, in regards to passed laws?
For example, the President recently decided to delay the implementation of Obamacare for business with 50-99 employees until 2016. Democrats don't seem to have a problem with a President using this power.
Is there any reason why a Republican President couldn't delay the implementation of Obamacare until 2100? Any reason why a Republican President couldn't decide that abortion was no longer legal? Any reason why a Republican President couldn't decide that all Democrats are required to contribute 100% of their earnings, wealth , and possessions to their Republican neighbors?
If your answer is "Yes!" to any of my scenarios, please explain why, and then explain why Obama is okay in doing what he has done (and continues to do) with his signature legislation.
The class-action lawsuit will be filed against Obama, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, Director of the National Security Agency Keith Alexander and FBI Director James Comey.
The complaint? “I am filing a lawsuit against President Barack Obama because he has publicly refused to stop a clear and continuing violation of the 4th Amendment,” Paul said in a statement. “The Bill of Rights protects all citizens from general warrants. I expect this case to go all the way to the Supreme Court and I predict the American people will win.”
Cuccinelli, acting as lead counsel, said he’s “excited” about the opportunity “to get the courts to affirm the rights protected by the 4th Amendment to the Constitution.”
“We have assembled a legal team and we expect to be opposed by the vast resources of the federal government, yet I am optimistic that we will prevail, because we are seeking to protect a cornerstone of the Constitution,” added Cuccinelli, who was defeated in the Virginia governor’s race last fall by Terry McAuliffe.
“This class action suit isn’t about Republican versus Democrat, or progressive versus conservative. This is about defending the basic civil liberties of every American from a government that has crossed the line. FreedomWorks is participating in this suit on behalf of our community of 6 million citizens nationwide, along with any American who has a phone,” Kibbe said. “If you use a phone, you should care about this case. Never in American history has there been such a warrantless gathering of citizens information. We believe it is time to put this before the courts. ”
Sometime tomorrow after the suit is filed, we'll learn from many Democrats and MSMers why Paul is racist.
Ahead of their playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts last weekend, the New England Patriots signed to their practice squad someone named Reggie Dunn.
Dunn is an undrafted, unheralded wide receiver. But he also is roughly the same height, weight and speed as Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton, who had scorched the Kansas City Chiefs with 13 catches for 224 yards and two touchdowns in the wild-card round.
As a practice-squad Patriot, Dunn was charged with imitating Hilton, giving New England's defense a head start. Apparently it worked: In a 43-22 win over the Colts, the Patriots held Hilton to four catches for 104 yards.
The Dunn hiring illustrates a little-known scheme that Patriots coach Bill Belichick employs for slowing down opponents: He clones them, stacking his practice squad with replicas of some of the NFL's most dangerous players.
"I don't know where he finds these guys," said former Dallas Cowboys executive Gil Brandt. "Every week, they bring in someone. Same height, same speed. It's like they practice against your twin brother."
To prepare for Sunday's AFC Championship Game in Denver against the Broncos, the Patriots in recent weeks signed to their practice squad 6-foot-3-Greg Orton, a doppelgänger for 6-foot-3 Broncos receiver Demaryius Thomas.
"It's something Bill does," said Patriots safety Duron Harmon. "To (practice against) a guy with the same height, weight, speed, it helps a lot."
Incredibly, according to Tucker, he and Elliot, (the cancer patient) got their audit letters on the very same day.
Tucker: "That date was Monday November 25th. Bill’s letter informed him that is being officially audited in the spring of 2014 whereas the IRS sent me a letter simply demanding $4,000 from me for the year 2003 and $2,000 from the year 2010 which must be received at their offices no later than December 26, 2013. Merry Christmas from the IRS."
But no one in the administration has been willing to tell us how many policies have been purchased, and this may be the reason: CBS News has learned enrollments got off to an incredibly slow start.
Early enrollment figures are contained in notes from twice-a-day "war room" meetings convened within the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services after the website failed on Oct. 1. They were turned over in response to a document request from the House Oversight Committee.
The website launched on a Tuesday. Publicly, the government said there were 4.7 million unique visits in the first 24 hours. But at a meeting Wednesday morning, the war room notes say "six enrollments have occurred so far."
They were with BlueCross BlueShield North Carolina and Kansas City, CareSource and Healthcare Service Corporation.
By Wednesday afternoon, enrollments were up to "approximately 100." By the end of Wednesday, the notes reflect "248 enrollments" nationwide.
The health care exchanges need to average 39,000 enrollees a day to meet the goal of seven million by March 1.
Maybe hiring a guy that had no history or running anything other than political campaigns for the most powerful job in the World wasn't such a good idea after all.
The proposal to extend the open enrollment period, which has been endorsed by 10 Democratic senators, is a reaction to the well-documented problems with HealthCare.gov in its opening month. With many people having trouble applying for insurance through the website, and the administration setting a Nov. 30 deadline for the site to be fully functional, the senators say people need more time to sign up for coverage. The enrollment period is scheduled to end March 31. The senators haven't asked for a specific new end date yet.
But expect to start hearing a significant amount of pushback from the industry, with a message focused on the fact that insurance premiums could skyrocket in 2015 if the enrollment period is extended.
"We are focused on educating lawmakers and the broader policy community about why the individual mandate and defined open enrollment periods are essential to achieving broad participation in the marketplaces," Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for America's Health Insurance Plans, a major industry lobbying group, told TPM. "Without these enrollment incentives, many young, healthy people may wait to purchase coverage until they need it, driving up premiums for everyone else."
The problem, according to the industry, is that an extended enrollment period could skew their calculations for 2015 premiums. Here's why.
Right now, insurers need to submit 2015 rates to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services between April 1 and April 30, 2014. If the enrollment period ends in March, as currently scheduled, insurers will know exactly what their customer base looks like as they make projections about their 2015 rates.
But if people can still sign up after March 31, either while or after insurers are making those calculations, it creates a few problems. Here's the big one: Most experts assume that young and healthy people -- who are crucial to making the law's finances work by offsetting the costs of sicker and older enrollees -- are more likely to wait till the last possible moment or until they get sick to sign up for insurance.
If that's true and they can't be accounted for when insurers are projecting their 2015 rates because of extended enrollment, that could lead to an older and sicker pool when those calculations for 2015 are being made. That would likely increase rates. And generally, the uncertainty about the pools could cause insurers to err on the side of caution.
"We think it's important for everyone to understand that the individual mandate is critical to making the insurance reforms work and to ensuring affordable coverage for consumers," the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Association said in a statement to TPM ."Unless everyone is covered, the reforms included in this law fundamentally do not work. An extension of the open enrollment season is effectively a delay of the individual mandate, with the same serious consequences for consumers."
The Insurance Companies are following the rules (as written by Democrats). While the President has been happy to change/break the rules on a whim (exemptions, etc.), if it is done this time around, it will have devastating results.
Way to go, Democrats! Way to go by ram this piece of shit through the system using parliamentary tricks, way to go by not reading what was in it, and way to go by doing it with zero Republican support.
If the GOP finds a way to somehow screw up the golden ticket for the 2014 elections (full repeal, reminding people who is responsible for their loss in coverage, premium increases, etc.), then God help this Country.
Sure was a good thing that the MSM focused on Mitt Romney cutting another kid's hair in high school, how his dog once rode on top of a car, and that he had binders full of women during the last election cycle, wasn't it?