Thursday, May 04, 2006

Dear Mr. Bailey, Dear Dr. Krupp

The following correspondence, between a punctilious academic and a hard-hitting corporate PR man, was recently discovered in our electronic attic. We publish it here for your enjoyment, along with some disucssion questions on this "84 Charing Cross Road"-like exchange.

I have heard rumors that your company pays workers below the federal poverty line and also provides no health insurance. Can you please clarify whether this is so? My students have been asking, and I will be glad to share your answer with them.
Dr. Anthony Krupp

That's not right, Dr. Krupp. The amount we pay our workers varies from market to market -- we have more than 18,000 workers -- and even the average salaries at UofM is $2 above the federal minimum wage, and $1 more than the Florida minimum wage. That said, the current administration is now reviewing the wages and benefits packages offered to all contract workers at the campus and we expect a significant revision in the current status.
Doug Bailey

Read the entire correspondence here.


Liza said...

yay =)

elizabeth said...

this is hilarious!

Anonymous said...

Seattle-Area Hospital Employees Hit SEIU Union with Federal Class-Action Charges in Wake of Threats
Union officials threaten 800+ employees with seizure of six months “back-pay” in involuntary union dues money used for union politics
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Everett, WA (March 31, 2005) – Six local hospital workers filed class-action federal unfair labor practice charges this week against the Service Employees International Union District 1199 NW (SEIU). The charges state that SEIU officials failed to inform over 800 employees of Northwest Hospital and Medical Center of their rights to withhold payment of union dues for politics.

The six coworkers, with help from National Right to Work Foundation attorneys, filed the charges at the NLRB’s regional office in Seattle.

“Union officials want these workers to simply shut up and pay up,” said Stefan Gleason, Vice President of the National Right to Work Foundation. “Rather than respect the rights of workers they claim to represent, union officials are bullying workers into bankrolling union politics.”

The SEIU’s contract with the hospital expired in fall 2004, after which the union ceased collection of involuntary union dues from employees. Since then, the union has used the threat of “back-dues collection” to keep workers in line and preserve the union’s status as monopoly representative.

The actions of SEIU officials violate the rights of these six hospital employees recognized under the Foundation-won U.S. Supreme Court decision, Communications Workers v. Beck. Under Beck and subsequent NLRB rulings, union officials must inform employees of their right to refrain from formal union membership and the right not to be forced to pay for costs unrelated to collective bargaining.

Foundation attorneys argue that since SEIU officials failed to properly inform workers of these rights as required by law, they have no claim to any of the compulsory “back-dues” that they are currently using to threaten workers. The NLRB will now investigate the charge and decide whether to issue a formal complaint in the case.

“The attempts by union officials to run roughshod over workers’ rights show the inevitable greed and corruption that flow from forced unionism,” said Gleason.

T said...

I would like to suggest that only "comments" be allowed to be posted as comments. That is, long cut-and-paste articles should not be sent through. If someone wants to write a comment and give a link to an article, fine. Otherwise, this is just an abusive use of the comments section.

T said...

I hereby request that you remove the anonymous post that is *not* a comment at all, and has no relation to the article posted. Only allow comments. Thanks.

fwj said...

Dear T,

We shall not remove comments that have already been posted. However, you have a point. Since comments are supposed to be, well, comments, we will no longer allow publication of full-text articles in the comment section. If anyone wants to open another blog and use it to publish his or her articles, the link is (there are other blog hosting sites on the internet -- the reason why we are just mentioning this one is not to advertise blogger, which is a google creation, but because we are genuinely ignorant about the cyber alternatives).

A kind request: can everyone be polite and civilized? It is tiresome to have to read all this aggressive commenting, if only to refuse publication...

Anonymous said...

The realities of censorship... once you start openly censoring - then you censor more, and more, and more...

I believe the people who run this site have shown us what they are really about... and that's something that I won't have any part in.

Good Bye Bloggers and Good Luck America - you'll need it with this generation.

T said...

Anonymous is confused by the difference between moderation and censorship, but I suspect few others are confused by the difference.

He wrote: "I believe the people who run this site have shown us what they are really about..." I agree: they've shown moderation, and have attempted to moderate. But anonymous isn't interested in respectful disagreement and debate, and I think his posts show what he is really about.

I'm glad anonymous is leaving, at least with that attitude. Perhaps he will return with a better understanding of the rules of civilized discourse. I know that respectful AND RELEVANT debate is possible, and it would be refreshing to see more of it here.