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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Michigan And Right To Work

I am not quite sure what the uproar is all about. To me this seems like a pretty easy one. If I work at a company and there is a union in place, shouldn't I get to decide whether or not I want to be part of said union?

I remember when I was a very young worker. Going to school and working a menial retail job for minimum wage. I had a discussion one day with an older person that was in an union. Granted, I was very ignorant of how unions worked, I just knew my dad was a longtime UAW worker.

When this older worker began discussing his union dues, I was intrigued.

"So you have to pay to be in the union?" I asked.

"Of course," was his reply, "they collect the dues out of each of my paychecks."

Even at a very young age (18 or 19 at the time), I was already getting a bad taste in my mouth about unions. After all, my father was full of stories about guys that didn't pull their weight, but that the union supported. Or guys getting fired for getting into fist fights, only to have the union get them reinstated a few weeks later.

But still there was something deep inside of me that thought that unions were altruistic. That they had nothing but the good of the worker at their heart. So this idea of paying to be in the union struck me as counter to that. I mean, shouldn't the union reps, who are employees themselves, just collect their normal pay for the representation they provide?

"What do they do with that money?" I asked, flabbergasted.

"Well, as far as I can tell, my union bosses get a large chunk of it. And what they don't take usually goes towards political action to get people I don't support elected to office."

Now I was really disgusted. After all, while definitely not anti-union (yet) I was a staunch supporter of Republicans. I had proudly voted for George Bush Sr over Mike Dukakis in 1988. My first presidential vote. Gun rights and pro-life were my main voting issues. I was just beginning to test the waters of fiscal politics.

While fiscal politics were new to me, I knew that I was against things like welfare. In my opinion that rewarded people for being lazy.Something I was also learning about unions.

"Well, in that case, I just wouldn't join the union." I said proudly.

"You can't do that. One of the requirements of employment at a union shop is that you have to join the union."

Now I was incensed. This had to be a joke. As my mind was scrambling at this idea I had to get clarity.

"So you HAVE to join the union to work at a union shop even if you don't like what the union stands for?" I asked incredulously.

"That's right. You don't have to be in a union, but to not be in the union you can't work at a union shop. So if you plan on being an hourly Ford Motor Company worker, you have to be in the UAW. Don't like the UAW and don't want to be a member? Well then you can't work as an hourly Ford employee. Crazy isn't it?"

Even at very young age this seemed very very wrong to me. To me it was a fundamental right to be able to work as an independent worker and not be part of a union if I so chose. Learning that it didn't work that way infuriated me.

In the years since then I have come to loathe unions. I have discovered that the worker isn't what they are working for. Most union leaders do it for the extra money they make despite doing less work. Most of the money that unions collect are funneled to the campaigns of liberal Democrat candidates. They have become nothing but political action organization as nefarious as the companies they claim to be fighting.

When I first heard about Right To Work I felt like this needed to happen. This needed to right the wrong I learned about so many years ago. Liberals are supposed to be "pro-choice". When you are talking about the choice to murder innocent humans in the womb, they are for choice. Talk about being able to pick your child's school regardless of residency, or being able to turn down union membership to work at a union shop and suddenly they become fascists.

The fact that unions are so dead set against allowing people to choose membership or not proves how little value they supply to the worker. If their service to the worker was so wonderful, who wouldn't choose to be part of the union? At the end of the day, unions don't want to be held accountable, and that is exactly what Right To Work will do: hold them accountable.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Jason Whitlock Is An Idiot

If you haven't yet heard about the murder-suicide committed by Kansas City Chief's player Javon Belcher, then you are living in a cave.

Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend and mother of his child before driving to Arrowhead stadium, where his team plays home games, and shooting himself in front of members of the Chief's staff, including his head coach.

No doubt a very disturbing and tragic story. It is very sad to think that a 25 year-old NFL player would resort to such action to deal with problems in his life.

However, as is typical in these cases, those on the left can't help but use incidents like this to try and push for renewed gun control efforts.

One such leftist pulling this typical tactic is Jason Whitlock, sports writer for Fox Sports.

Click here for story:  In KC, it's no time for a game

Whitlock starts out by trying to make the case that the Chiefs game, scheduled and played earlier today, shouldn't be played in the aftermath of this incident.  But then he inexplicably launches into an anti-2nd amendment, anti-gun diatribe. The ignorance on the issue exhibited by Jason Whitlock is so overt that Fox Sports should not have allowed the article to be published. But since they did, Fox Sports should seriously consider taking the article down.

Whitlock has this to say related to gun control:
I would argue that your rationalizations speak to how numb we are in this society to gun violence and murder. We’ve come to accept our insanity. We’d prefer to avoid seriously reflecting upon the absurdity of the prevailing notion that the second amendment somehow enhances our liberty rather than threatens it.
How many young people have to die senselessly? How many lives have to be ruined before we realize the right to bear arms doesn’t protect us from a government equipped with stealth bombers, predator drones, tanks and nuclear weapons?
Our current gun culture simply ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy, and that more convenience-store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will leave more teenage boys bloodied and dead.
In the coming days, Belcher’s actions will be analyzed through the lens of concussions and head injuries. Who knows? Maybe brain damage triggered his violent overreaction to a fight with his girlfriend. What I believe is, if he didn’t possess/own a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.
Huh? Really? How Whitlock could presume to know that if Belcher didn't own a gun that he and his girlfriend would still be alive is beyond me. Someone should tell Whitlock that murder and suicide have preexisted guns by thousands of years! Unless Whitlock is going to argue that Cain shot Abel with a gun. Or that Judas Iscariot shot himself in the head after betraying Jesus.

This is idiotic thinking. I cannot put it any milder than that. I know that Belcher's actions are shocking and evoke strong emotions, but trying to argue that Belcher was incapable of killing his girlfriend and himself without a firearm is pure ignorance.

Note how Belcher quickly starts to circle the wagons around the concussion and head injury issue. Despite documented evidence to the fact that NFL players are subjected to actual brain damage. No, the culprit in this case, according to Whitlock, is the implement of murder that Belcher used. Why blame the perpetrator when you can blame the tool?

Whitlock goes as far as to suggest that guns are the reason that teenage boys kill one another over disputes at convenience stores. Really? I guess if you remove guns from those types of situations cooler heads would always prevail? No one would punch, kick, stab or even use their vehicle to run down? Oh wait, those types of actions take place every day in the absence of a firearm. Whitlock again is wrong on the subject.

The fact of the matter is that people that want to kill and commit suicide will do just that. Remove one tool, and they'll use another. Our world's history proves this, and only someone that is ignorant, or purposely trying to mislead, would ignore that history. Belcher wanted to kill his girlfriend because she was leaving him and was going to go after him for child support. Once he committed that crime, he took the even more cowardly way out of that by killing himself. Lack of a gun wouldn't have prevented it.

The Jason Whitlocks of the world will never understand that because they already have a vendetta against guns. They will continue to blame the gun rather than the murderer. They will fail to see that people that want to end their own life have myriad ways of doing that, and only one involves a firearm.

Oh, and then there is this perspective:

Click here for story: Injuries, alcohol and painkillers before he snapped and killed girlfriend: report

The couple had only recently reconciled after Perkins left their rented house in Kansas City with the baby at one point to stay with friends. Perkins had returned, but friends said the relationship was still volatile.
It didn’t help that he was drinking every day and taking painkillers while dealing with the effects of debilitating head injuries, the friend said.
Why doesn't Whitlock go off about our country's culture of alcoholism? After all drinking doesn't even have a constitutional amendment to protect it, and it causes far more death and destruction than firearms do. Something tells me that Whitlock would never argue that alcohol should be done away with. And the fact that he wouldn't is most telling.