Saturday, September 05, 2009

The End of Card Check?

Thomas Riggins

Today’s NYT Business Section[9-5] reports that the head of the AFL-CIO says the card check provision in the EFCA legislation can be dropped: “Union Head Would Back Bill Without Card Check.”

This has been a demand of the ruling class all along. We should not forget that the monopoly capitalist ruling class gets what it wants in the long run [without a major unified fight by labor and its allies] and it looks like card check will be dropped from EFCA.

Sweeney could “live” without card check if the unions got fair and fast “snap” elections. But his replacement [as of 9/16] Richard Trumka “stopped short of endorsing fast elections.” Meanwhile the capitalist class, via the US Chamber of Commerce, is also dead set against fast or snap elections so will they win this issue as well? What are the chances of EFCA with card check now that Sweeney says it could be dropped?

Another key issue is binding arbitration when the capitalists drag their feet during contract talks. The US Chamber of Commerce is also 100% opposed to this as well. None of these provisions threaten in any way capitalist control of the US and opposition comes from the most reactionary sectors of monopoly capital. If all three measures are defeated it will signal that this sector is the dominate wing of monopoly capitalism.

Let’s hope David Bonior of America Rights at Work gets his wish and the original EFCA, despite Sweeney, passes. If it does will it be because more enlightened ruling class elements understand that the union movement is not a threat, in and of itself, to capitalist rule?

The same article reports that the Gallup Poll says only 48% of Americans approve of unions, down from 59% in 2008. What could account for these figures and such a drop in less than a year? Probably something wrong with how the poll was conducted as the Obama victory should have boosted the favorable opinion of unions.

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