Discovered: a new way unions manipulate CA status quo

Discovered: a new way unions manipulate CA status quo

unionpowerql4Californians who don’t belong to a public employee union have every right to feel as if the state is rigged against them.

Because districting is based on population, not number of citizens, Democrats do better in Sacramento from the get-go then one would expected based on voting on high-profile state props. Our Legislature should be strongly Democratic and thus generally pro-union — not overwhelmingly Democratic and reflexively pro-union.

And on those state props, the Attorney General’s Office works to thwart anti-union ballot measures with dishonest ballot summaries, and the state Public Employment Relations Board targets them with extreme tactics, too. At the local level, unions try to sandbag ballot measures with skulduggery, and the authorities usually look the other way. Direct democracy is the biggest threat to union hegemony, and the California power structure reacts accordingly.

2011 law enables more legal looting

But there’s still more. Leave it to Dan Borenstein of the Contra Costa Times to point out a new way the public is brutalized by the union-favoring California status quo:

“A bill Gov. Jerry Brown signed in 2011 gives labor the right, when negotiations break down, to demand a nonbinding fact-finding inquiry before most local governments can impose terms.

“In theory, a neutral party approved by both sides evaluates competing positions. In practice, the fact-finders, professional mediators and arbitrators, lack objectivity because they cannot alienate unions if they want to receive business elsewhere.

“Consequently, the costly, time-consuming process produces biased findings devoid of common sense that place additional political pressure on elected officials to make concessions they cannot afford.”

Shock: Lawyer does favor for Dem status quo

I don’t assume this is just a failure of a split-the-difference process. It may well be yet another example of the fact that lawyers are a key part of the Democratic Party’s coalition, and that lawyers who do favors for the most powerful part of the Dem coaltion can expect their favors to be “paid forward.”

Dan’s fact-finding doesn’t make one think the “fact finder” he writes about is fair or competent, that’s for sure:

“In Concord last year, attorney Carol Vendrillo concluded that the city, already facing a $5.5 million structural deficit, should raid revenues from a temporary sales tax increase to fund permanent salary and benefit increases of 12.3 percent. 

“Vendrillo ignored that voters had been told the tax money would be used only to protect core services, cover the city’s structural deficit and rebuild badly depleted city reserves.

“She revealed her bias as she warned that ’employees’ expectations, labor peace, and a positive labor/management relationship, while difficult to measure in monetary terms, must weigh heavily in the (City) Council’s response’ to her recommendation.”

Great, just great.

What was that again about Jerry Brown being some sort of genius? He signed this law. It’s on him.

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