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Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Monday, January 23, 2012

Workers can't unite without the XL Pipe

Jack Kemp

In an article entitled "Why Obama Turned Down the Keystone XL Pipeline," Ron Radosh explains to befuddled Americans (myself included) what made Obama agree to the foolish idea of refusing to create thousands of union jobs and have more energy in the country. Even as a political news junkie, I could not fully understand Obama's (and his supporters') thinking until former leftist Radosh explained the trendy ideas and "logic" of Obama's political calculation in making this decision. It fits perfectly with the line I wrote in 2008: Obama seems to be running not for President of the U.S., but of the Harvard Faculty Lounge.

Here are Radosh's concluding remarks:


So if the unions supported the pipeline, as they did, why are they so silent now that the president has turned against a proposal they backed? The answer is that I suspect a private deal was made last week: The unions would downgrade their disappointment at the veto of Keystone XL, in return for the president unconstitutionally using his powers to override the Constitution and put in pro-labor recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the same board that tried to penalize Boeing for wanting to move its new facility to South Carolina from the state of Washington.

For the unions, a pro-left-wing NLRB is more important for Big Labor to attain all of its goals even if it hurts the spread of corporations to a more hospitable climate where new jobs would be created. This kind of clout as well as promises to support other labor demands that Congress might not sanction but which the president would try to implement by executive fiat are more important in their judgment than having the pipeline built at this moment.

And, in the process, Obama would try to energize the left-wing base in Hollywood and the campuses, which care little about the needs of the working-class and the unions, but respond with passion to the clarion calls of Al Gore, Robert Redford, and Laurie David.

Notice Mr. Radosh refers here to Big Labor as a movement, a leadership force. The considerations of the many working people - minorities included, as per Federal law and common practice - can go pound sand, as far as Obama and the Union bosses are concerned.

The situation recalls an imaginary discussion between a rank-and-file worker and a Union Boss.

Worker: We can't get that work on the XL Pipeline? I'm broke and I don't know what I'm gonna do.

Union Boss: Well, you can go on Welfare, if it comes to that.

Worker: I've never been on Welfare in my life and it is demeaning.

Union Boss: Look, it's not so bad. Heck, even if you get desperate and lose your home, there's still some hope of good news.

Worker: Yeah? Whaddaya mean by that?

Union Boss: If you get caught breaking the locks and sneaking into your old house and then get sent to jail, your orange jumpsuit will have a union label!

Worker: Thanks a lot. You just sold me. I'm voting for the Republicans.

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