Roanoke County’s ties with sustainability group questioned (Agenda 21)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Roanoke County’s ties with sustainability group questioned

Speakers at a board of supervisors meeting said a worldwide group is using global warming as an excuse to meddle in local government.

By Cody Lowe
  981-3425

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Previous coverage

Correction (July 27, 2011: 3:45 p.m.): A story on Tuesday’s Roanoke County Board of Supervisors’ meeting incorrectly reported when the county joined ICLEI, Local Governments for Sustainability. The county joined that organization in 2007.

The story also incorrectly reported no one had spoken previously before the board in opposition to the ICLEI affiliation. In fact, speakers did raise the issue at the two immediately preceding meetings of the board. | Our corrections policy

A political group that claims credit for helping persuade the Roanoke County Board of Supervisors not to adopt new urban development planning rules last month was back before the board Tuesday.

This time, about 10 speakers, many mentioning ties to the tea party movement, put pressure on the board to disaffiliate from an international organization the speakers said helps promote those types of regulations.

The county has been affiliated with ICLEI — Local Governments for Sustainability since 2007, adopting initiatives for reducing carbon dioxide emissions and other conservation causes. The group was founded in 1990 as the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives.

Speakers voiced opposition to the affiliation at the two previous supervisors’ meetings.

Apparently at the urging of the Roanoke Tea Party’s leadership and Web page, which predicted an end to the connection if people expressed their concerns, speaker after speaker called on the board to abandon its $1,200-a-year affiliation with the group.

Lawrence Alldridge summed up the concerns of many by linking ICLEI to what he called the “questionable theory of man-made global warming.”

He warned of the group’s links to the United Nations, which was roundly condemned for trying to take over control of local government.

“I strongly object to this dubious agenda and that ICLEI can dictate to you. Do not doubt that you are being dictated to by ICLEI.”

The group’s policies promoting the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and controlling development “have taken away our rights. You’re allowing the camel’s nose under the tent.”

Other speakers claimed that affiliation with ICLEI was tantamount to letting a foreign government dictate local policies and stripping them of freedoms guaranteed by the state and federal constitutions.

Most, including Roanoke Tea Party President Chip Tarbutton, demanded that the county sever all ties to the group.

Although ICLEI wasn’t on the supervisors’ agenda, the speakers took advantage of the usual spot open to any public comments during the meeting’s evening session.

The board took no action on ICLEI, and only Charlotte Moore, the Cave Spring District representative and a proponent of the group and its local component, RC-CLEAR, even mentioned it in her closing remarks.

Even skeptics of man-made global warming, she said, “do believe if we don’t preserve and sustain what we have, we may not be able to leave clean air, clean water and a nonpolluted valley” to the next generation.

The other contentious topic of the day was the first reading of proposed new regulations for the utility-scale generation of wind energy.

As with ICLEI, there was no public hearing scheduled on the topic — the only action was a procedural motion to set a public hearing date for Aug. 23 on the proposals.

Chairman Butch Church allowed five speakers at the afternoon session to voice their concerns to the board.

Four more speakers addressed that topic at the evening session, all opposed to a plan to put utility-scale wind turbines on Poor Mountain. No specific application for such a wind farm has been made, but Chicago-based Invenergy is widely known to be planning a project there.

Although Windsor Hills District Supervisor Ed Elswick made an impassioned plea for continued study of the subject and the regulations that have been recommended by the county’s planning commission, he voted with the others to advance the issue for the public hearing on Aug. 23.

That will be the board’s next meeting date, and it will include other public hearings as well — including one on regulations for the shooting of pneumatic guns in the county — which caused the board to move up that evening’s meeting time to 6 p.m.

The word is beginning to get out… this Agenda 21 is a radical plan that must be stopped.

State of Oregon Government Salaries, Wages, and Benefits | GovDocs


State Salaries

View salary information for state employees.

Agency Class Last Name First Name Annualized
Insurance
Benefits
Annualized
Retirement
Benefits
Annualized
Salary
Total
Annualized
Compensation

(detailed view)
TREASURY, OREGON STATE CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER SCHMITZ RONALD D $15,503.64 $37,249.44 $265,512.00 $318,265.08
HUMAN SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF PRINCIPAL EXECUTIVE/MANAGER J DIAMOND MARK $15,947.52 $40,524.60 $240,000.00 $296,472.12
HUMAN SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF PRINCIPAL EXECUTIVE/MANAGER I DAVIDSON PETER J $15,947.52 $33,904.80 $231,992.76 $281,845.08
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CLINCIAL DIRECTOR SHELTON STEVEN $15,608.64 $30,599.52 $229,332.00 $275,540.16
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI DEGNER GEORGE G $15,608.64 $46,167.60 $208,056.00 $269,832.24
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI PUERINI MICHAEL T $15,860.88 $43,969.20 $208,056.00 $267,886.08
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI VARGO JOHN M D O $13,317.84 $43,995.00 $208,056.00 $265,368.84
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI GULICK GARTH $15,957.72 $36,409.80 $208,056.00 $260,423.52
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI RUTHVEN DARYL S $15,235.08 $36,409.80 $208,056.00 $259,700.88
TREASURY, OREGON STATE SR INVESTMNT OFCR EQUITIES NORDHILL KEVIN M $15,850.68 $29,148.60 $208,056.00 $253,055.28
TREASURY, OREGON STATE SR INVESTMNT OFCR EQUITIES FEWEL JOHN B JR $15,598.44 $27,760.68 $208,056.00 $251,415.12
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI LYTLE GREG $15,860.88 $41,888.40 $188,772.00 $246,521.28
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI SAZIE ELIZABETH $15,608.64 $41,888.40 $188,772.00 $246,269.04
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI VAN HOUTEN GRANT $14,836.44 $32,214.36 $198,180.00 $245,230.80
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI DRAVIS DONALD $15,924.96 $27,765.00 $198,180.00 $241,869.96
TREASURY, OREGON STATE SR INVESTMNT OFCR REAL ESTATE CHILD S BRADFORD $14,604.72 $27,915.00 $198,180.00 $240,699.72
POLICE, OREGON STATE STATE MEDICAL EXAMINER GUNSON KAREN L $15,598.44 $26,442.84 $198,180.00 $240,221.28
TREASURY, OREGON STATE SR INVESTMNT OFCR FIXED INCOME LIM PERRIN $14,931.48 $26,446.92 $188,772.00 $230,150.40
ADMINISTRATIVE SRVCS, DEPT OF PRINCIPAL EXECUTIVE/MANAGER H KORESKI JOHN G $15,503.64 $50,391.12 $163,128.00 $229,022.76
CORRECTIONS, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS PHYSICIAN SPECIALI WALIA SUNIL K $15,608.64 $31,464.36 $179,796.00 $226,869.00

Always enlightening.. lotsa “belt tightening” in Salem these days… mostly around the necks of hapless taxpayers.

Michelle Malkin: The Creepy Enablers of Wu

Wu-hoo! Welcome to another freaky ethics fiasco brought to you by the D.C. den of dysfunctional Democrats. This one comes clothed in a Tigger costume, wrapped in blinders and bathed in the fetid Beltway odor of eau de Pass le Buck.

Liberal David Wu is a seven-term Democratic congressman from Oregon who announced Tuesday that he’ll resign amid a festering sex scandal involving the teenage daughter of a longtime campaign donor. He won’t, however, be vacating public office until “the resolution of the debt-ceiling crisis.” Translation: Call off the U-Haul trucks. Wu’s staying awhile.

Wu’s sexually aggressive, alcohol-addled and erratic outbursts stretch over decades. He admitted in 2004 that he engaged in “inexcusable behavior” as a 1970s undergrad at Stanford University. School officials disciplined Wu after his ex-girlfriend told campus police he attempted to rape her and stifle her screams with a pillow after they broke up. Last fall, Wu’s senior campaign staff quit en masse after confronting him about his ongoing drinking problem, watching him throw hissy fits at the Portland International Airport and at a local Democratic Party event, and receiving the now-infamous e-mail photo of him smiling in a Tigger costume.

Wu’s staff received another photo of him seemingly passed out on a bed in the same costume in the wee hours of the morning, along with incoherent e-mails from his official government BlackBerry signed in the names of his tween-age children. The staffers so feared what Wu might do next that they kept him hidden from public view in the final days of the campaign. Gotta love that new era of transparency. In February, Wu’s advisers publicly demanded he get treatment.

House Democrats — whose fundraising arm poured more than $80,000 into Wu’s re-election coffers last cycle — remained silent and took no action. Not until this weekend’s revelations about Wu’s alleged teenage victim were published by The Oregonian newspaper did Nancy “Drain the Swamp” Pelosi call for an investigation by the House ethics committee. Note: The victim called Capitol Hill in May to complain, months after Wu’s own staff demanded he get help and several left-leaning newspapers published editorials calling for his resignation.

On Tuesday afternoon, White House spokesman Jay Carney claimed ignorance of Wu’s decision to (eventually) resign when convenient. He then downplayed the scandal as a sad personal tragedy about one “troubled individual,” rather than a systemic ethics morass.

Bull. This is as much a scandal for Pelosi and her failed leadership as it is a scandal for Wu. We’re talking about the same proud feminist leadership and the same dysfunctional ethics panel that have dragged their feet on cleaning Capitol Hill’s mountain of other dirty laundry while providing cover to other predatory Dems:

They slapped New York Democratic Rep. Charlie Rangel on the wrist for serial tax-cheating.

They have yet to bring California Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters to trial after charging her last year with three violations related to her crony TARP bailout intervention on behalf of minority-owned OneUnited Bank in Los Angeles.

They are just now looking into former New York Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner’s possible abuse of government resources while sending lurid messages and photos to young women across the country.

And they have only recently reauthorized a probe into the aftermath of allegations that former New York Democratic Rep. Eric Massa sexually harassed several young male staffers.

In that case, you’ll recall that Pelosi’s office and Democratic Rep. Barney Frank’s office had both been told by Massa’s top aides of the out-of-control abuse of underlings — but said and did nothing for months.

Wu’s a creep. But the pattern of malign neglect on the part of his Washington enablers is even creepier.

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Wu is a disgrace to Oregon and to the office (and that’s quite a feat)

Push Back Against FDA Growing – Tenth Amendment Center

Push Back Against FDA Growing

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by Bernie LaForest and Michael Boldin

A county assembly in Washington State has just passed a food freedom ordinance which would punish federal agents with up to ten years in prison and $20,000 fines.

On July 20th, the Stevens County Assembly finalized the ordinance. They are now in the process of collecting signatures from the residents of Stevens County – urging them to to claim his/her natural right to grow, produce, purchase, and consume the foods of their choice.

Beyond that, the passed ordinance would make it unlawful for agents of either the State or Federal government to execute laws that interfere with the ordinance.

Already four towns in Maine have passed similar measures, and others around the country have indicated they’re looking at the same.

REGULATIONS, REGULATIONS, AND MORE REGULATIONS

Last year, Congress introduced the Food Safety Modernization Act (S. 510) which opponents say will lead to crushing regulations on local food production – at the benefit of the big corporate farming interests that backed passage of the law. Local food ordinances appear to be a direct response to the new regulations. The Stevens County Ordinance states, in part, that:

WHEREAS, We find the history of government regulators, even with hundreds of food regulations on the books, shows they are incapable of protecting citizens from exposure to food poisoning events from foods produced by corporate farming

What exactly have all of these regulations given you? For example:

–The year-long raw milk sting operation that resulted in a raid consisting of two US Marshals, two State Troopers and two FDA officials on a SWAT like assault on an Amish farm in Pennsylvania at 5 a.m.

–In the first half of 2008, there was an epidemic of human salmonella poisoning that afflicted 1,294 people in 43 states, the District of Columbia and Canada. The FDA immediately sprang into action and after a hasty investigation they proclaimed that tainted tomatoes may be the source of the epidemic. Several varieties of tomatoes were withdrawn from markets and restaurants across the country. Several weeks later, the FDA proclaimed that it may indeed be jalapeno peppers and cilantro that could be contributing to the outbreak. All of these ingredients are commonly used to make salsa which is a staple when eating Mexican food. Surprise! Finally the FDA pinpointed the peppers and cilantro that were imported from Mexico because it had traced contaminated irrigation water. The American tomato industry lost millions of dollars because of these errant recalls.

–Last year, FDA “Investigators” entered an organic grocery store in Venice, California – warrant and guns in hand. As reported by the LA Times, they “ordered the hemp-clad workers to put down their buckets of mashed coconut cream and to step away from the nuts. Then, guns drawn, four officers fanned out across Rawesome Foods in Venice. Skirting past the arugula and peering under crates of zucchini, they found the raid’s target inside a walk-in refrigerator: unmarked jugs of raw milk.

These are but a few of the seemingly endless examples of how the FDA and its increasing regulatory and police power have been keeping you “safe.” Some people, as shown by the five towns taking matters into their own hands, have decided that “enough is enough.”

LOCALS SPEAK OUT

Sedgwick, Maine resident Mia Strong told Natural News: “Tears of joy welled in my eyes as my town voted to adopt this ordinance. I am so proud of my community. They made a stand for local food and our fundamental rights as citizens to choose that food.”

“I still can’t believe they took our yogurt,” Rawesome volunteer Sea J. Jones told the LA Times a few days after the raid. “There’s a medical marijuana shop a couple miles away, and they’re raiding us because we’re selling raw dairy products?”

COMMUNITY FARMING, ORGANIC FOODS: TENTHER 101

While the media would like to portray any and all actions that assert the Tenth Amendment as a “tea party” or “right wing” movement, support for food sovereignty ordinances, along with fifteen states passing medical marijuana laws, certainly proves that stereotype to be little more than media hype.

The ordinance from Stevens County makes this clear:

WHEREAS, We, the people of the State of Washington domiciled on Stevens county, declare:
1. The Tenth Amendment to the Constitution for the United States, states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people”; and
2. That pursuant to Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution for the United States, there is no power granted to the federal government to regulate local foods on Stevens county; and
3. The Ninth Amendment to the Constitution for the United States, states, “The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”; and
4. That pursuant to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments to the Constitution for the United States, the power to regulate local foods on Stevens county is reserved to the State of Washington or the people of the State of Washington.

WARNING TO THE FEDS

Like the four towns in Maine that have passed similar ordinances, Stevens County means business. They’ve also included an enforcement clause – telling the feds, in essence, to butt out.

ENFORCEMENT CLAUSE;
(A)(1) The people of the State of Washington domiciled on Stevens county, declare that any law enacted by the congress of the United States; any federal regulation, rule, or policy promulgated; any executive order issued by the president of the United States; and any court decision; that seeks, purports, or is otherwise intended to regulate, in any way, the unalienable and fundamental rights of the people on Stevens county to choose the local foods they produce; process or prepare; sell, purchase, or distribute; preserve and store for extended periods of time; and consume, for food or drink, for people or other life forms, is not authorized by the Constitution for the United States of America; and
(2) The people of the State of Washington domiciled on Stevens county, declare the federal laws, etc., referred to in subsection (A)(1):
(a) Are invalid on Stevens county; and
(b) Will not be recognized by Stevens county; and
(c) Are specifically rejected by Stevens county; and
(d) Are null and void, having no effect on Stevens county.

The ordinance continues

(D)(1) Public employees employed at the federal, state, or local levels, including, but not limited to, agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Homeland Security, Food and Drug Administration, Washington state Patrol, sheriff’s departments, and municipal and county police will not enforce or attempt to enforce the federal laws, etc., referred to in (A) subsections (1) and (2); or treaties referred in (B) subsections (1) and (2); or Washington state laws, etc., referred in (C) subsections (1) and (2);
and
(2) A violation of subsection (D)(1) is a class B felony (as defined at RCW 9A.20.021(1)(b)) and is punishable by confinement in a state correctional institution for a term fixed by the court not to exceed ten (10) years, or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court not to exceed twenty thousand dollars ($20,000), or by both such confinement and fine; an

WHAT NEXT?

While the FDA has been getting increasingly aggressive – raiding raw milk activists, threatening walnut producers, and the like – these activists believe that they can push back and win by doing the same to DC. Will a local government ever attempt to arrest an FDA official? Only time will tell, and maybe they’ll never have to. With five local ordinances now passed, the “food sovereignty” movement is just in its infancy. But, if they learn from the efforts of those who defied DC on issued like medical marijuana and the real ID act, they’ll recognize that when enough people, towns, and even states – say NO to Washington DC, there’s not much the feds can do to stop them.

Bernie LaForest is the Outreach Director for the Wisconsin Tenth Amendment Center.

Michael Boldin [send him email] is the founder of the Tenth Amendment Center. He was raised in Milwaukee, WI, and currently resides in Los Angeles, CA. Follow him on twitter – @michaelboldin – and visit his personal blog – www.michaelboldin.com

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The FDA has been working hard to do it’s part to “fundamentally change” America.. into a Centrally Controlled Statist Regime.. where the Government is all knowing, all powerful, and quick to dominate the “little people”. Government tends to attract this kind of personality and they are encouraged to blossom into full fledged “little Hitler’s” under the Obama administration’s push to Massive Centralized planning and control.

PJTV – Fat Cat Bureaucrats: How the Government Gets Rich Off Taxpayers – Glenn Reynolds

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Excellent explanation- huge cost of overhead drags down the economy.

At 15 Federal Agencies, Death More Common Than Job LossThe Foundry: Conservative Policy News Blog from The Heritage Foundation

How secure are federal workers’ jobs? According to a recent USA Today study, death is the leading cause of job loss in 15 federal agencies.

The federal government laid off or fired 0.55 percent of its workforce, according to USA Today – about one sixth of the firing/layoff rate in the private sector. A pair of agencies, the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission, did not fire or lay off a single worker in the budget year that ended September 30, despite employing roughly 3,000 workers between them.

Federal workers based in Washington DC were least likely to be fired or laid off – only 0.26 percent lost their jobs.

A spokesperson from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which fired or laid off only 0.15 percent of its workforce, attributed the low turnover rate to the extraordinarily high quality of HUD employees. “We’ve never focused on firing people, and we don’t intend to start now,” the spokesman told USA Today. “We’re more focused on hiring the right people.”

If private employers would put the time and effort into hiring the right people, in other words, their turnover rates might be comparable.

The USA Today reveals some other interesting facts about federal employment:

USA TODAY found that nearly 60% of firings occur in the first two years of employment, mostly workers on probation and outside the federal job protection system. Blue-collar workers are twice as likely to be fired as white-collar employees. The federal government’s 12,700 food preparation workers had the highest rate of getting fired last year — 2.5%.

White-collar federal workers have almost total job security after a few years on the job. Last year, the government fired none of its 3,000 meteorologists, 2,500 health insurance administrators, 1,000 optometrists, 800 historians or 500 industrial property managers.

The nearly half-million federal employees earning $100,000 or more enjoyed a 99.82% job security rate in 2010. Only 27 of 35,000 federal attorneys were fired last year. None was laid off. Death claimed 33.

Job security actually represents one of the chief advantages that public sector workers enjoy over their private sector counterparts, a fact noted by the Heritage Foundation’s James Sherk last year:

Civil service rules make it prohibitively difficult to fire federal employees for bad performance once they pass their probationary period—one year on the job. Most federal employees who perform poorly never get fired. They keep their jobs unless their supervisor works through an arduous process of exhaustively documenting their performance and working through a complex appeal process.

The result: exactly the trends documented by USA Today.

 

TriMet opens Gresham, Beaverton bike-and-rides, hopes facilities used more than first | OregonLive.com

TriMet opens Gresham, Beaverton bike-and-rides, hopes facilities used more than first

Published: Monday, July 18, 2011, 9:29 AM     Updated: Monday, July 18, 2011, 9:26 PM

030.jpgView full sizeThe Beaverton transit Center’s bike-and-ride opens today.

TriMet will open two more bike-and-ride facilities today — one in Beaverton, the other in Gresham — for commuters who want to split modes during their daily slogs.

The secure bike-and-ride at the Beaverton Transit Center will be the Northwest’s largest, providing parking for up to 100 bikes. A 30-space facility also opens at the Gresham Central Transit Center.

The idea is to encourage people to drop off their bicycles at the transit centers before hopping on MAX trains or buses. TriMet said riders taking bikes on trains, especially on the westside, has become a problem in recent months.

Of course, Oregon’s largest transit agency can only hope the two new bike-and-rides are used more than the lonely cage at the Sunset Transit Center.

The $275,000 bike-and-ride at the chockablock Sunset Transit Center in Beaverton opened a year ago. As I stated in a column a few months ago, “it’s one of those taxpayer-funded bike projects that makes taxpayer-funded bike projects look bad.”

 The transit agency eliminated eight car spaces to build a steel-caged bike-storage facility with security cameras, key-card access and a repair station at STC. Capacity: 74 bikes. After eight months, the bike-and-ride was averaging 1.2 bicycles a day.

As of late April, the days when no one used TriMet’s first bike-and-ride added up to four months when it was completely vacant.

 TriMet officials and bicycle-commuting advocates expect the Gresham and Beaverton facilities to be more successful, largely because they aren’t as “out of the way” as the one at Sunset and are closer to bike-lane networks.

Also, no car-parking spaces were sacrificed to build the new bike-and-rides.

TriMet is using $1.4 million in federal stimulus funds for the three bike & ride facilities, replacement of 96 bike lockers and new key access on 86 others. In all, TriMet is adding 386 new or improved bike parking spaces, the agency said.

The Westside Transportation Alliance has produced this YouTube tour of the new Beaverton Transit Center facility:

Anyone care to calculate the size of this government decision per bicycle storage space? Wait, let’s make that per USED bike storage space. This is another complete waste of taxpayer money, used to support an extremely narrow interest group at the expense of the public at large. Where does it stop? This is another example of how government, once entrenched, will milk the productive classes with an expanding “need” for more and higher taxes to “invest” in one boondoggle after another.

VERNUCCIO: Labor’s new strategy: Intimidation for dummies – Washington Times

In the past decade, unions have become increasingly desperate to obtain new dues-paying members. An example of how desperate can be found in a 70-plus-page intimidation manual from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which only recently came to light in a pending court case.

The new union tactic is to use pressure on corporate boardrooms as a means of organizing entire companies nationwide rather than recruiting workers on a site-by-site basis; in short, to organize employers rather than employees. To create this pressure, unions attempt to push businesses to the edge of bankruptcy, with little regard for the welfare of employer and employee. They attempt to strong-arm businesses into agreeing to take away the secret ballot for employees in union-organizing elections via card check. They also try to force employers to restrict their own speech on union issues so that workers will not get both sides of the story on unionization. Among the SEIU’s demands is that employers agree to bargain only with it, to the exclusion of all other unions, regardless of what workers want.

SEIU is in federal court defending itself against charges of racketeering and extortion filed by one of its unionizing targets, the catering company Sodexo Inc.Sodexo’s court discovery recently revealed an SEIU “Contract Campaign Manual” on “Pressuring the Employer.” Union pressure is nothing new, but what SEIU recommends is not limited to organizing drives and strikes. Rather, the pressure takes the form of a so-called corporate campaign, whereby the union allies itself with outside third parties to raise intimidation to a new level.

SEIU’s manual details how “outside pressure can involve jeopardizing relationships between the employer and lenders, investors, stockholders, customers, clients, patients, tenants, politicians, or others on whom the employer depends for funds.” The union advises using legal and regulatory pressure to “threaten the employer with costly action by government agencies or the courts.”

It details the use of community groups to “damage an employer’s public image and ties with community leaders and organizations.” SEIU recommends going after company officials personally. Not mincing words, SEIU states, “It may be a violation of blackmail and extortion laws to threaten management officials with release of ‘dirt’ about them if they don’t settle a contract. But there is no law against union members who are angry at their employer deciding to uncover and publicize factual information about individual managers.”

The “dirt” includes charges such as “racism, sexism, exploitation of immigrants or proposals that would take money out of the community for the benefits of distant stockholders.” SEIU recommends “[l]eafleting outside meetings where [targeted managers] are speaking, their homes, or events sponsored by community organizations they are tied to are some ways to make sure their friends, neighbors, and associates are aware of the controversy.”

Putting this into practice, in May SEIU drove 14 busloads of protesters to the quiet suburban home of Bank of America’s deputy general counsel, Greg Baer. Fortune magazine’s Washington bureau chief, Nina Easton, Mr. Baer’s neighbor, reported on the “hordes of invaders” shouting into bullhorns and waving signs. Ms. Easton wrote that “a more apt description of this assemblage would be ‘mob.’ Intimidation was the whole point of this exercise.”

Only Mr. Baer’s teenage son was home. Terrified, he locked himself in the bathroom, pleading with Ms. Easton, “When are they going to leave?”

In some areas, the manual blatantly advises breaking the law, stating, “Union members sometimes must act in the tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King and Mohatma [sic] Gandhi and disobey laws which are used to enforce injustice against working people.”

How do SEIU and other unions plan to get away with this? With help from the Obama administration. Though their corporate campaigns are not new, they are becoming more prevalent with the help of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). In fact, this was the subject of a May 26 hearing by the House Education and the Workforce subcommittee on health, employment, labor and pensions. Chairman Phil Roe, Tennessee Republican, noting the acceleration of corporate campaigns, said that the NLRB recently has taken “steps to expand the arsenal of tactics available for a corporate campaign,” including moving to uphold union elections tainted by intimidation because the board said the intimidation was originated by “nonparties,” and removing restrictions on boycotts of neutral employers.

Organized labor is losing members at a rapid rate. In the private sector, union membership stands at less than 7 percent. In attempting to hang onto its money and power, Big Labor has produced some documents that make for interesting reading and, as we may find out at a July 22 hearing in the Sodexo case, for legal fireworks as well.

F. Vincent Vernuccio is labor-policy counsel at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and editor of Workplacechoice.org.

© Copyright 2011 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Ads by Stansberry:See his full prediction here

Application of Saul Alinsky tactics.. you know, the sort of methods our President taught while he was “community organizer”.