A Primer on the Antiunion Campaign at Volkswagen — Volkswagen Worker

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Volkswagen Worker

A Primer on the Antiunion Campaign at

The Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Jan. 28, 2014. (Photo: Chappell / The New York Times)

the dizzying array of antiunion that were involved in the to undermine workers’ choice to a union at Volkswagen in Chattanooga, a who of who did what in the dirty tricks may come in handy.

On April 9, the Auto Workers (UAW) Republican Sen. Bob Corker, Bill Haslam and 18 other officials to appear at the National Relations Board (NLRB into third-party intervention in the election at Volkswagen in Chattanooga, Given the dizzying array of forces that were in the campaign to undermine workers’ it’s easy to lose of who did what.

The anti-UAW campaign at had everything: a senator deliberately workers; a governor offering hundreds of millions of taxpayers’ — but only if the union — senior state openly making threats of retribution; Republican staffers coordinating the anti-UAW campaign notorious union busters; organizations with links to the leading right-wing activists; an Ayn anti-union consultant; and AstroTurf that purported to be groups of workers. And this is only we know so far.

Here’s a quick primer to the actors in the campaign to subvert choice:

Competitive Enterprise A shadowy libertarian organization links to the Koch Brothers and foundations. CEI’s involvement was through right-wing activist Patterson, who later went on to the antiunion campaign with the for Worker Freedom.

Center for Freedom: A special project of Norquist’s American for Tax Reform. CWF Matt Patterson spent a in Chattanooga spreading misinformation. the election, he boasted that his of involving workers’ families and the had caused strife.

Bob Corker: Sen. Bob Corker twice told workers he had given assurances that would expand production at if they voted against the It wasn’t true. Never has a senator misused his position to in a union election at a private in this way.

Jim Gray: consultant Gray heads a Carolina firm that has a focus on union avoidance. attending an anti-UAW planning Gray stated, I’m here to help out. It that Gray helped the production of the antiunion campaign


Bill Haslam: Tennessee Bill Haslam offered $300 million in subsidies, but if the UAW lost. Written at top of the confidential was the following caveat: The incentives below are subject to works discussions between the State of and VW being concluded to the satisfaction of the of Tennessee.

Peter List: A notorious consultant, List is the founder and CEO of Labor Relations. According to a in Fortune magazine, List is a believer in Ayn Rand’s philosophy of individualism who opposes all state to regulate labor relations. In a organizing campaign, NLRB Dennis Walsh wrote in his effort to persuade workers, had engaged in patently unlawful

National Right to Work Legal Defense Fund: The claimed that it only free legal support for workers, but the UAW has alleged that a lawyer was also involved in the antiunion campaign.

Volkswagen Worker

Maury A Chattanooga antiunion lawyer who Southern Momentum, Inc. told Reuters that his had raised over $100,000 antiunion businesses and individuals. purporting to represent ordinary workers, none of SMI’s came from workers, and few workers had any direct involvement it.

Projections, Inc.: One of the country’s union avoidance firms, created three antiunion for SMI, which were at public meetings, put on SMI’s website and given to workers on drives so they could them with their The videos implied that job security would be threatened if voted for the union.

Robin Chairwoman of the Tennessee Republican Smith compared the UAW to an infestation of wasp larvae. When the expressed support for an investigation Haslam’s secret offer, tweeted: @NAACP supports at @VW in Chattanooga. Those allies the tale. As indicated by her comments, the GOP establishment intervened in the election in a manner.

Southern Momentum, SMI was the one antiunion group that to represent ordinary Volkswagen In reality, it was another AstroTurf headed by antiunion lawyer Nicely, funded by antiunion and which hired expensive union avoidance professionals.

Bo Watson: State Senator and other senior state threatened to block financial for the company — which the understood would threaten job security — if workers for the UAW. The day before workers voting, Watson stated at a conference that, members of the Senate will not view as in the best interest of Tennessee, and lawmakers would have a time convincing our citizens to any Volkswagen incentive package.

Womack: Corker’s chief of was in direct contact with politicians — including of the Governor’s cabinet — and avoidance groups about messaging. Womack sent an concerning the three Projections videos. Recipients of his message Grey, List, and the heads of the Chamber of Commerce and Tennessee Association.

The Volkswagen election showed the lengths to which Republican and antiunion organizations are prepared to go to workers’ right to choose a Whatever the eventual outcome at they must never get with these dirty again.

Copyright, Truthout. May not be without permission .

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