Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tea Party (Koch Brothers) begin push for 'Right-to-Work' constitutional amendment for 2012

By On November 10, 2011
Or, in other news: “Tea Party guarantees Ohio goes for Obama, Brown and Democrats in 2012.”

Fresh off the defeat of Issue 2, the ohio Tea Party movement and the anti-labor business group, Associated Builders and Contractors of Ohio, are announcing today that they are pushing to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot to turn Ohio into a “Right-to-Work” State.

From the Columbus Dispatch:

Despite those facts, and the notion that President Barack Obama, who has already latched onto Issue 2’s defeat and would count on labor’s support to win Ohio next year in his re-election bid, tea party sympathizers are moving forward with a workplace initiative intended to “allow workers to have the right to bargain individually” — according to a source with knowledge of the proposed amendment.

Note the deception already. They won’t come out and say it in the language that this is a proposal to constitutionally prohibit collective bargaining, but you can’t simulatenously have an effective to collectively bargain if you also have a right to individually bargain. The law of physics apply in politics, too– two things can’t occupy the same physical space. By creating a constitutional right to “individually” bargain, then collective bargaining becomes an infringement of that “right,” and therefore, the laws that permit it become subject to a constitutional challenge.

Why can’t these folks just draft the proposal for what it really is “a constitutional amendment banning collective bargaining.” Why the deceptive language? If they honestly thought the people of Ohio shared their political views, why be so indirect about it.

By the way, if this passes, will an individual have the right to strike without fear of losing their job or being replaced? How does that work?

In 1958, Republicans tried to pass a constitutional amendment to make Ohio a “right-to-work” State. It didn’t turn out too well for them:

O’Neill, Bricker and most every other Republican lost along with right-to-work. Voter turnout exploded. More than 3.2 million Ohioans cast ballots, far in excess of previous non-presidential years. In 1954, for example, just 2.5 million Ohioans had voted.

[The current ORP Chairman Ray C.] Bliss provided this analysis:

“The defeat of many of our Republican candidates is directly attributable to the placement of the right-to-work issue on the Ohio ballot this year.

“The proposed amendment provided a live issue through which the labor leaders were able to turn out a huge…labor-Democrat vote. During the past year, I repeatedly warned the proponents of this issue that this defeat would be the possible consequence.

“They choose to ignore my warnings. I estimate that an additional 200,000 additional labor-Democrat voters went to the polls Tuesday because the issue was on the ballot.”

From 1958 until this year, Republican governors and legislative leaders have avoided another attack on unions as direct at Senate Bill 5 is perceived to be.

The Ohio Republican Party was nearly wiped out of existence that year.

Kasich, who had previously stated publicly that he had no desire to see Ohio become a “right to work State,” appeared to be noncommittal given his spokesman’s comments on the proposal:

This morning, Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said “job creation is Gov. Kasich’s top priority and we need to continue to work hard to create a jobs-friendly climate in Ohio.

“Right now is the time to pause and take stock of the best way to do that and we are not ready to discuss any specifics at this point,” Nichols said.

Kasich needs to stand up to the Tea Party and tell them, in no uncertain terms, “No.” If someone on the right doesn’t scuttle this here and now, you are going to see Obama and Brown easily win and you could see GOP Congressional and state legislative candidates get wiped out.

If you didn’t hear the people of Ohio on Tuesday, then the Tea Party is going to hear them loudly, and they’re not going to like what the voters will have to say. Josh Mandel does not want to be on the ballot with a radical anti-choice “Personhood” Amendment that social conservatives couldn’t even get passed in Alaska, Mississippi, or Colorado, and a “right-to-work” amendment that he has to take a position on and have to choose between his political base, or the majority of Ohioans. I mean, his support for Issue 2 is politically toxic enough as is.

If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear the Tea Party was really a shadowing Democratic front group designed to boost Democratic turnout.

If the Tea Party wants to have another labor ballot, and do it in 2012, just a year after Issue 2 was soundly defeated, I say:

Let’s roll!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Ohio's version of 'never again!': The Anti-Middle Class of '11 (they voted YES on SB 5 in the House)

We killed the bill, now what?

By On November 9, 2011 ·
Here’s what the Issue 2 map looks like:
[Click image to enlarge.]
[Update:] Final numbers from the Ohio Secretary of State’s office shows that 46% of registered voters cast a ballot last night. In comparison, 49% cast a vote in 2010 election. Last night was the highest turnout for an off-year election in at least 20 years in Ohio. Turnout was higher than expected, but so much for the idea that the polls oversampled Democrats.

The most southern “green county” is Shannon Jones’ Warren County. Warren-Butler-Clermont Counties is the belt of > 60% GOP performance counties that the GOP regularly uses to neutralize Cuyahoga County’s heavy Democratic performance. Last night, John Kasich’s Issue 2 did carry one of these, but with less than 52% of the vote. Issue 2 only won Warren County with roughly 2,200 votes. Once again, that’s Shannon Jones’ home county. Her husband was on the ballot in a township trustee race. He lost. The husband of the Senate Majority Whip lost an election in the deep red Warren County where Issue 2 barely passed.

View entire article here.

STRS Board to meet November 17-18, 2011
Details here.

STRS Board to meet November 17-18, 2011

From STRS, November 9, 2011
The State Teachers Retirement Board and Committee meetings currently scheduled at the STRS Ohio offices, 275 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215, are as follows:
Thursday, November 17, 2011
9 a.m. Retirement Board Meeting, followed by Ad Hoc Committee for Retreat Review
Friday, November 18, 2011
9 a.m. Disability Review Panel (Executive Session), followed by Resumption of the Retirement Board Meeting
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The Retirement Board meeting will come to order at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011, and begin with a Report From the Investment Department, followed by a Report From the Finance Department, the Executive Director's Report, public participation and the next segment of the Asset/Liability Study. The Retirement Board meeting will resume Friday morning (Nov. 18) following a brief meeting of the Disability Review Panel. The agenda includes a Report From the Member Benefits Department - Health Care, routine matters, old business, new business and any other matters requiring attention.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Monday, November 07, 2011

CORE to meet November 17, 2011
Details here.

CORE to meet November 17

From CORE, November 7, 2011
CORE (Concerned Ohio Retired Educators) will hold its November meeting on Thursday, November 17, 2011 at the STRS building, 275 East Broad Street, Columbus, OH. Parking is available (free) in the STRS parking garage located in the rear of the building, off E. Capital Street.
You are also encouraged to attend the STRS Retirement Board meeting on the same day. It usually begins around 9:00 a.m. in the Board Room on the 6th floor, though the time may vary from month to month. Frequently the meetings have been held most of the day on the following Friday as well as on Thursday. For this reason, we suggest you check the STRS website ( to confirm the time.
CORE meeting attendees usually leave the board meeting around 11:30 a.m. to go to the second floor cafeteria to get lunch. We eat in the small room adjacent to the cafeteria, behind the Sublett Room, where the CORE meeting begins promptly at 11:45.
A meeting agenda will be sent out via e-mail before the November 17 meeting. If you have additional suggestions for the agenda, please send them to John Curry at curryjo@watchtv,net.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Educators and others affected by Issue 2: Here's your reason to cancel your subscription to the Columbus Dispatch

Message from CORE president Dave Parshall
November 6, 2011
Today the Columbus Dispatch -- no surprise -- endorsed a "yes" vote on Issue 2. It is time to ask all educators to cancel their subscription to the Dispatch, just like I did two years ago after the editorial attacks on public schools and educators.
The polls are wrong, and are inflated to make the "no" voters feel that they can stay home on election day November 8. This will be a very close vote. We need to remind people how important this is to all active and retired educators and to the security of our pensions and our futures.
Remember, Senator Keith Faber has said that public employees do not need a lifetime pension (meaning a Defined Benefit Pension) because the private sector does not have them anymore. Of course, the truth is that corporate America trashed the public sector pensions during the Bush nightmare. It is more of the GOP race to the bottom and a two class society.
As far as I am concerned, any educator who votes yes should call STRS and volunteer to have their pension refigured, and be the first to ask for no more cost-of-living increases, so that the majority of us who need our pension to survive can do so. The truth is the truth and facts are facts and enough is enough.
[I canceled my subscription to the Dispatch in January 2010; you can read my letter here: KBB]
Larry KehresMount Union Collge
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