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There's a battle going on inside Ohio. The crux of the dispute is over the same union-busting proposals being fought over in Wisconsin under the leadership of Neo-Confederacy Governor-General, Scott Walker.
In Ohio, Republican Sen. Shannon Jones (Springboro) has authored the anti-union bill tagged SB-5.
From a unionized worker's point of view, here are the most egregious provisions....
End all collective bargaining rights for state employees, including at universities and colleges;
Local police and firefighters would have weakened rights to binding arbitration by instead required deadlocked parties to extend their contract for a year first;
Local government could no longer include terms of health insurance coverage or costs in collective bargaining agreements. Management will pick insurance policies, and employees must cover at least 20 percent of the cost;
Allow local governments to hire permanent replacement workers during a strike (i.e. “scabs.”)
Prohibits public employers from picking up extra employee pension contributions;
Eliminates from state law automatic pay increases for experience and education (no automatic raise when you get your Masters Degree, teachers!);
Eliminates from state law leave policies and automatic 15 sick days for teachers;
Prohibits school districts from bargaining away certain management powers, such as the ability to deploy teachers to certain buildings;
No longer makes longevity a deciding factor when management is deciding to make layoffs;
Requires a public employer to publish on its website any changes in the union contract that impacts compensation of workers, including wages, length of service payments, and insurance coverage.;
Requires the employer and the State Employment Relations Board to publish the parties’ offers on their websites before and after fact-finding is complete; and
Allows schools or local governments in fiscal emergency to terminate or modify a collective bargaining agreement.
I don't think it would be stretching it too much to say that if this bill passes in Ohio, state employees' unions will soon be a relic from the state's past.
However, not everyone is on board LittleJohn Kasich's union-wrecking train. Like these state senators for example.....
"While there is much in the bill I think is good, there are some things I think are decidedly a bridge too far," said Sen. Bill Seitz,.....He said the bill gives management too much power.
Another Ohio state senator....
"I think that reforming collective bargaining doesn't mean getting rid of it. I believe in the right of people to gather as a group and advocate on their behalf."
"If binding arbitration is taken away, what are they left with? My fear is it becomes a situation where litigation is used, and I don't think that's the best way to solve our problems."
Yet another Ohio state senator....
"I've been a strong supporter of collective bargaining my entire career."
Do you know what the kicker here is? Those three state senators are Republicans. Those statements are from Republican state senators, Bill Seitz (Cincinnati), Franl LaRose, (Fairlawn), and Scott Oelslager (Canton).
That's how radical...how extreme....SB5 and LittleJohn Kasich....are.
And that's why many thousands of protesters will congregate in Columbus tomorrow to voice their disapproval.
By now, as many of the harder-cored conservative base have made plain, most folks watching what's happening in Wisconsin and what's being proposed for Ohio realize that all of this is simply one big concerted effort by Tea Party-fueled Republican governors and legislatures to crush what little remains of the backbone of Democratic politics.....labor unions.
When conservative radicalism rules......it's just not enough to be awarded the never-ending upper hand in all political campaigns by the activist-judicial ruling of Citizens United. Oh, no.
Being handed all the hundreds of millions the RNC will ever need to outgun their Democratic counterparts....for eternity.......is just not a big enough pound of flesh for LittleJohn's Crusaders. Alongside of the floodwaters of anonymous and unlimited cash that John Roberts' 4 Horsemen set free to flow into conservative political campaigns......the Democrats must also be starved out of the process. In other words....there must be blood.
What we're seeing in Wisconsin, Ohio, New Jersey....and soon to come, many other states....is a political conspiracy to deal a fatal blow to the campaign-raising and organizing ability of the few remaining labor unions who still provide support for the Democratic Party.
In other words.....using political power, elected office, as Karl Rove has instructed, not to govern on behalf of the people...I mean, let's be serious.....but instead, to crush your political opponents.
First they came for ACORN, then they came for Planned Parenthood.....and now they are coming with their torches and pitchforks for the unions.
We deserve better.
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