Framing the Dialogue

Boeing Boeing Gone

I have not had the opportunity to see the movie interpretation of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged (i.e. the closest theater is about an hour away), but it feels more and more like I am living the story.  I’ve read the novel twice since my first time when I was awakened bythe vultures depicted by Rand.   It was hard to be disgusted by a parasitic nation that sucks the life out of productive people to prolong their reign.  It is hard to watch former great companies like Jack Welch’s General Electric mooch off of Obama to gain favor for their subsidiaries while, in my mind, pretending to be a capitalist company.  Businesses have always done this, but the level of government interference seems obscene.

An early case was settled (poorly) by the Supreme Court of the United States (“SCOTUS”) in Kelo vs New London.  The constitution has provided that goverments can take private property for public use as long as they pay fair value for the taking.  In the early 2000’s the folks in New London, Connecticut decided that the word “use” means “good” and reinterpreted the takings clause.  They could now take your property if they fell that they could get a better deal and perhaps collect some extra tax money.  Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer would have benefited from this public “good”, however, Suzette Kelo didn’t want to give up her land.  Too bad for her.  After a long battle SCOTUS decided to stretch the Constitution, acutally partially destroy it by siding with the town.   I don’t believe that the property has yet to be developed and Pfizer will be closing its facilities in New London.

In the latest shocking display of government interference with industry (you know their the folks who create real jobs) the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) has filed a complaint against the airline giant Boeing.  The NLRB objects to Boeing’s decision to build a new plant in South Carolina and wants to force it to build the facility in Washington state.  Some of the facts:

  • Boeing currently has a manufacturing facility in Washington.
  • The International Association of Machinists(“IAM”) represents the workers at the Washington facility
  • The IAM is a union
  • Since 1975 IAM have lead five strikes including two in the past six years which reportedly cost Boeing billions of dollars
  • Boeing tried to negotiate with IAM for a no-strike labor agreement for a new facility
  • Boeing announced it would build its new plant in South Carolina
  • South Carolina is a “Right to Work” state – you cannot be forced to join a union
  • The five member NLRB board is now controlled by Democrat members
  • Member – Wilma B. Liebman, a Clinton appointee who is the chairman of the NLRB, also has strong union affiliations and was labor counsel for the Bricklayers and Allied Craftsmen from 1990 to 1993; she also served as legal counsel to the International Brotherhood of Teamsters for nine years
  • Member  – Gaston Pearcewas a founding partner of Creighton, Pearce, Johnsen & Giroux, where he practiced union-side labor and employment law before state and federal courts and agencies.
  • Member – Craig Becker (still unconfirmed) is also a lawyer who has previously represented unions and he has served as the associate general counsel to both the Service Employees International Union and the AFL-CIO.
  • Pearce and Becker were “recess” appointments because they could not be confirmed though Pearce has since been approved.
  • Three NLRB members are former union collaborators and control the five member board
  • The IAM is a union
  • South Carolina is a “Right to Work” state – you cannot be forcde to join a union
  • Boeing wants to build in South Carolina
  • Three NLRB members are former union collaborators and control the five member board
  • The IAM is a union
  • South Carolina is a “Right to Work” state – you cannot be forced to join a union
  • Boeing wants to build in South Carolina
  • Three NLRB members are former union collaborators and control the five member board
  • The IAM is a union
  • South Carolina is a “Right to Work” state – you cannot be forced to join a union
  • Boeing wants to build in South Carolina

Are you sensing a pattern or was I too subtle?  Of course South Carolina legislators are in high dudgeon and vow to fight.  Even Lindsay “like a broken clock right twice a day” Graham is making waves rather than giving in to Democrats.  If this doesn’t strike every American as overreach by the federal government then I fear our future.  The folks in Washington state and South Carolina should both be fearful that Boeing doesn’t build its plant in a right-to-work country like China or India. 

The federal government is trying to force an American company to build a plant where it doesn’t want to build one!

Who is John Galt?

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