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Friday, December 21, 2012

Checking in

Just checking in to see if Left in Aboite survived the Mayan Apocalypse. . .
it appears that Blogger has been tweaking in my absence...It's been a crazy year for me, as those of you who are facebook friends are well aware. We shall see what 2013 brings; it looks like I may need a remedial course with all of the changes on here. Anyway, congrats on surviving the latest "the end is near!" and my very best wishes for the new year!

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Please join me in supporting John Good!

Pre-Primary reporting window ends this Friday. You still have time to help send a message to Indiana Republicans that enough is enough! It is time for fiscal accountability and an end to attacks on Hooisers. Please consider making a financial contribution before the Friday deadline passes. This is an investment in the future of the State of Indiana!


Please join me in supporting John Good!

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

"Good for Indiana"

I am officially announcing my candidacy for Indiana State Representative in House District 83. If you reside in Aboite Township in Allen County, or most anywhere in Whitley County, I hope to earn your vote this coming November. I look forward to hearing about the issues that are most important to you and discussing how we can work together to move Indiana forward! I appreciate your support and humbly ask that you help my campaign by clicking on my mug to visit my fundraising page.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

John Good for State Representative - House District 83

Rep. Kathy Heuer (R-Columbia City) was a co-sponsor of House Bill 1001, Employee’s Right to Work for Less. She is also the incumbent State Representative in House District 83, the very district in which I now reside due to House Republican's recent redistricting. For most of you, that information is likely enough to preface my next:
It is my great honor to announce that I am running as the Democratic, pro-union, anti-RTW, working for YOU - not the lobbyists and corporations candidate for Indiana House District 83. My district includes most of Aboite Township in Allen County and all but the northeast section of Whitley County, but I will immediately get hard to work on the issues that matter most to ALL hard-working Hoosiers. Indiana, much as other midwest states, has been under attack by governors who have sworn allegiance to ALEC and the Koch Brothers. Their aim is to lower wages for workers to increase profits to corporations at your expense. I promise to be an agent to reverse that effort and work for the people of our great state.
To quote America's favorite populist, Jim Hightower, "The people are revolting; and in the best possible way". Let the bought and paid for legislators in Indianapolis be forewarned: The people of Indiana have been paying attention. They have assembled in great numbers to request that their voices be heard, and you have ignored them. On their behalf, I and other citizens across the Hoosier state are stepping up and running for the very offices that you now hold. You have betrayed the trust of your constituents and we will bring the fight for their best interests right to your front yard. You have been put on notice.
To help my fight against corporate-backed anti-union legislators in the Indiana General Assembly, please use the following link to donate ANY amount you can spare to my campaign for State Representative. I truly appreciate your support and will fight hard for your best interests:

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Monday, January 09, 2012

Right to Work for Less Not Right for Indiana

Right to Work for Less Not Right for Indiana

January 09, 2012

This article was penned by Allen County Democratic Party Executive Director Jack Morris:


There have recently been articles concerning legislation called “right-to-work” (RTW). Articles in favor of this legislation provided unsubstantiated claims and misleading information. They contend it is more difficult to attract businesses to Indiana without this legislation. These claims are not consistent with actual facts. At the end of this article I list numerous sources anyone can read to learn real facts. A fair review of the facts, as opposed to unsupported claims, demonstrates RTW legislation is not in the best interest of Indiana or its workers.

At the outset I acknowledge the right of those who advocate for RTW legislation. We need a full and complete discussion of any topic. However, we should look facts in support of each view and not rest upon bare assertion without verifiable facts. A review of the facts related to RTW legislation causes me to oppose this legislation.

Before an informed discussion on RT, it is appropriate to address the name. This legislation does not create any job or the right to any job. Further, the ‘right’ which it confers carries significant negative consequences with far reaching impact on the ability of a worker to obtain a job with a living wage (a wage which enables the worker to support his or her self and a family). These consequences lead opponents of RTW legislation to label this legislation as ‘right to work for less.’ In 2001, Monsignor Higgins the former director of the Social Action Department of the National Catholic Welfare Conference and longtime advisor to the U.S. Catholic Bishops on labor and civil rights, poverty, and religious tolerance pointed out that the “pressure for [right-to-work] legislation does not arise from workers seeking their ‘rights.’ Proponents are uniformly employers’ organizations and related groups.” He argued right-to-work laws “do not provide jobs for workers; they merely prevent workers from building strong, stable unions” (Higgins, 2001).

State Representative Win Moses addressing a town hall meeting on the "Right to Work" legislation.


Under U.S. labor law, workers already have specific rights. A worker does not have to join a union or pay costs of a union's political, legislative, social or charitable activities. A worker can refuse to join a union and still work for a company where a union exists. The worker only has to pay the cost of the collective bargaining and other activities which provide direct support to all workers. This is like any association designed to benefit all members. For example, homeowners are forced to pay the costs of a homeowners association even if they do not want the benefits from the activities the association carries out. A homeowners association can put a lien on a residents home if the dues are not paid. The RTW law would allow individuals to work at a job with all the benefits of a collective bargaining agreement without having to contribute to the cost of those benefits. In the context of a homeowner association this would be like allowing the homeowner to use the association pool, clubhouse, parks, security service, etc. without paying their fair share. No one can be forced to move into a neighborhood with an association; but, if they move in, knowing there is an association with benefits and a cost, they should pay their fair share. Likewise, a worker who chooses to work at a job covered by a collective bargaining agreement which assures certain rights for the workers should expect to pay a fair share of the costs of obtaining and maintaining those rights.

RTW laws are really government interference with the rights of workers and employers to enter into a contract. RTW laws allow a person who benefits by the contract to avoid paying the costs of obtaining the benefits gained by the contract. Clearly this approach weakens the worker side of the contractual bargain to the benefit of the employer. In the absence of organized labor there would be no contract between the employer and the worker. Indiana is an employment at will state, an employer does not need a reason to fire an employee. An individual employee has minimal bargaining position to obtain higher wages, safe work conditions or benefits such as health insurance. These are among the unfair treatment which led to workers becoming organized in unions; to allow negotiations for fair wages, benefits and safe work conditions.

The result of passage of RTW laws in some states was the creation of two competing labor climates within the United States, one (primarily in the Northeast, the Midwest, and on the West Coast) permitted “fair share” representation clauses in contracts and thus encouraged stable unions, higher wages, and better benefits for workers, the other (largely in the South and the Great Plains) outlawed “fair share” agreements through RTW legislation and inhibited the growth of unions and their positive effects for workers.

Two independent studies, one by the Indiana University Division of Labor Studies in January, 2006 and a March 2011 report from the Higgins Labor Studies Program from the University of Notre Dame researched the facts related to RTW legislation. Each of these studies document there is no support for the claim that RTW legislation helps economic development; and, there is clear documentation that workers in states with RTW laws make less income and receive less benefits. Further, review of their research demonstrates RTW legislation is actually harmful to the overall economy of a state and would be harmful for Indiana.

The Indiana and Notre Dame research refutes the claims that RTW legislation attracts businesses to a state. Further, The Work Environment Index (WEI), constructed by the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) at the University of Massachusetts, ranked states in terms of working conditions. They found states with good working conditions (Including wages, benefits, safe working conditions, and good community resources) provide an attractive economic climate for business; not RTW laws.

The Indiana University study concluded adoption of a RTW law would be a fundamental step backward for Indiana and described RTW as nothing more than anti-union strategy disguised as economic development legislation. The study asserts Indiana and other states cannot win by joining the race to the bottom in terms of wages and working conditions.

Mayor Tom Henry addresses the crowd at the Fort Wayne "Right to Work" Town Hall


‘Right-to-work’ laws are an attempt to limit the capacity of unions to negotiate and even to survive. These laws threaten family values by lowering family incomes and reducing other benefits such as medical insurance. These results of RTW laws are in clear conflict with faith based teaching on the dignity of workers and have a negative impact on family values. As the U.S. Catholics Bishops wrote in Economic Justice for All, “No one may deny the right to organize without attacking human dignity itself” (U.S. Catholic Bishops, 1986).The Wage Penalty of "Right-to-Work" Laws by Lawrence Mishel, found that the mean effect of working in a right -to-work state results in a 6% to 8% reduction in wages for workers in these states, with an average wage penalty of 6.5%.

True economic development is the process of increasing opportunities and living standards for allresidents of an area. The claimed economic growth to be accomplished by the advocates of RTW does not address how ‘growth’ is distributed. The facts comparing wages in RTW to non-RTW demonstrate worker wages and benefits are lower in the RTW states. Real economic development is not compatible with falling wages and benefits for workers. Our present economic downturn is evidence of what happens when income disparity grows with workers suffering reduced incomes while prices continue to rise. Our working class drives our economy. The presence of unions raised wages for all workers, including non-union jobs and produced a middle and upper-middle class which became the core to our economy and our tax base. Unfortunately, as the disparity of wealth has grown, middle and upper middle class workers have lost ground under the fiction of economic development. Wages have stagnated or dropped. The tax base has also dropped without any increase upon those at the top thereby putting economic pressure on governments resulting in reduced benefits for the unemployed and underemployed (Those making lower pay that what their past experience and education would have paid and thus below their prior budgeted income.) Passing RTW legislation would increase this downward trend increasing the financial strain on our workers and their families.

The facts dictate rejection of RTW laws for Indiana. We have a great state with tremendous reasons for businesses to locate here. We, and most importantly our leaders, should sell the positive reasons for businesses to relocate here. Promoting economic development by RTW legislation is simply bidding to lower the rights of Indiana workers to gain employers who clearly do not value their workers. Indiana can do better. Economic development should occur by us selling the benefits of Indiana and not by selling out our working families. Call your government representatives and urge them to not sell out our working families and tell them to vote NO on right to work legislation.

REFERENCE AND SOURCES OF BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Adams, Roy J."Universal Joint Regulation: A Moral Imperative," Proceedings of

the 43rd Annual Meeting, Industrial Relations Research Association, 1990

Ady, Robert. 1997. “Discussion of a paper on The Effects of State and Local Public

Services on Economic Development.” New England Economic Review. March-April, pp.

77-82.

Belman, Dale "Unions, the Quality of Labor Relations and Firm Performance," in Unions and Economic Competitiveness, Lawrence Mishel and Paula B. Voos, eds., M.E. Sharpe, 1992

Bennett, J.T. 2001. Right To Work - Prescription for Prosperity and Opportunity. Washington, D.C.:

Catholic News Service. 2011. “Wisc. Archbishop: Don’t suspend workers’ rights,”

Catholic Reporter Online. February 18, 2011. http://ncronline.org/news/justice/wiscarchbishop-

don’t-suspend-workers-rights

Catholic Scholars for Worker Justice. 2011. “Statement in Support of Labor Unions.”

http://www.usccb.org/jphd/economiclife/pdf/economic_justice_for_all.pdfhttp://wwwcat

holicscholarsforworkerjustice.org/2011%20SOS%20for%20Labor%20Unions.pdf

Cowie, Jefferson. 1999. Capital Moves: RCA’s Seventy-Year Quest for Cheap Labor.

New York: Cornell University Press.

Dixon, Marc. 2007. “Limiting Labor: Business Political Mobilization and Union Setback

in the States.” Journal of Policy History 19: 313-44.

Dubofsky, Melvyn. 1994. The State and Labor in Modern America. Chapel Hill:

University of North Carolina Press.

Economic Policy Institute. 2011a. Wages and compensation stagnating. The State of

Working America. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute. Feb. 14, 2011.

http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/charts/view/201

Economic Policy Institute. 2011b. Family income growth in two eras. The State of

Working America. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute. Feb. 14, 2011.

http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/charts/view/49

Farber, H. S. 1985. "The Extent of Unionization in the United States." in Thomas Kochan, ed.,

Challenges and Choices Facing American Unions Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.

Flavin, Patrick, Alexander C. Pacek, and Benjamin Radcliff. 2010. “Labor Unions and

Life Satisfaction: Evidence from New Data.” Social Indicators Research 98(3): 435-49.

Gordon, David. 1995. Fat and Mean: The Corporate Squeeze of Working Americans and

the Myth of Managerial "Downsizing." New York: Free Press.

Gould, Elise, and Heidi Shierholz. 2011. “The Compensation Penalty of ‘Right-to-Work’

Laws.” Economic Policy Institute Briefing Paper. February 17, 2011.

Higgins, Mgsr. George G. 2001. “Right to Work Legislation Back in the News,” The

Yardstick, July 30.

J.M., B.T. Hirsch, and D.A. MacPherson. 1999. Wage Differentials Across Labor Markets and Workers:

Lafer, Gordon. 2011. “What’s Wrong with ‘Right-to-Work’: Chamber’s numbers don’t

add up.” Economic Policy Institute Policy Memorandum #174.

Lichtenstein, Nelson. 2002. State of the Unions: A Century of American Labor.

Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Mishel, Lawrence. 2001. “‘Right-to-Work’ Laws and Economic Development in

Oklahoma.” Economic Policy Institute Briefing Paper. August 2001.

Moore, W. J., and R.J. Newman. 1985. The Effects of Fright -to-Work Laws: A Review of the Literature.

Moore, W.J., J.A. Dunlevy, and R.J. Newman. 1986. Do Right -to -Work Laws Matter? Comment.

Moore, W.J. 1998. The Determinants and Effects of Right -To-Work Laws: A Review of the Recent Literature. Journal of Labor Research Vol. 19, No. 3, pp. 449-69.

Michael E. Porter, The Competitive Advantage of Nations, Free Press 1990

James Heintz, Jeannette Wicks-Lim, Robert Pollin, Decent Work in America: The

State by State Work Environment Index, 2005

Stevans, Lonnie K. 2009. “The Effect of Endogenous Right-to-Work Laws on Business

and Economic Conditions in the United States: A Multivariate Approach.” Review of Law

and Economics 5(1): 595-612.

U.S. Catholic Bishops. 1986. Economic Justice for All: Pastoral Letter on Catholic

Social Teaching and the U.S. Economy.

http://www.osjspm.org/economic_justice_for_all.aspx

Vedder, Richard, Matthew Denhart, and Jonathan Robe. 2011. “Right-To-Work and

Indiana’s Economic Future.” Indiana Chamber of Commerce Foundation.

Wessels, W.J. 1981. Economic Effects of Right to Work Laws. Journal of Labor Research. Vol. 2, No. 3,

Zieger, Robert, and Gilbert Gall. 2002. American Workers, American Unions: The

Twentieth Century, 3rd edition. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.

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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Shit My Dad Says (The Charlie White Edition)

The following is a screen shot from last night of Darrell White's facebook page. Darrell White is former Secretary of State Charlie White's father. The page has since been scrubbed clean of this content:

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Wednesday, August 03, 2011

From the Inbox

Today's entry contains a very good idea - one that could go a long way toward putting the country back on its feet and back on the right track. However...

Let's get to the e-mail first:
Please consider forwarding, if you agree.

I have cleaned this e-mail of all other names, sending it to you in hopes that you will keep it going and keep it clean. This is something I believe in and I hope you all read it all the way through.

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months and 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971...before computers, before e-mail, before cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less to become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.

I'm asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

1. Term Limits. 12 years only, one of the possible options below.
A. Two Six-year Senate terms
B. Six Two-year House terms
C. One Six-year Senate term and three Two-Year House terms

2. No Tenure / No Pension.
A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

3. Congress (past , present and future) participates in Social Security.
All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people.

4. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

5. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

6. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

7. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

8. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12.
The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S. ) to receive the message. Maybe it is time.

LET'S FIX CONGRESS!!!!! If you agree, pass it on. If not, just delete. You are one of my 20+. Please keep it going.

Now for the "However..."

According to the National Archives (www.archives.gov):
The Constitution provides that an amendment may be proposed either by the Congress with a two-thirds majority vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate or by a constitutional convention called for by two-thirds of the State legislatures. None of the 27 amendments to the Constitution have been proposed by constitutional convention.
Now, what do you suppose the odds are of any Congressperson introducing such a thing to their peers? Hmm...

If our politicians were the kind of stand-up people with the necessary gumption to cut their own throats for the good of the country, well, we really wouldn't need such an amendment now, would we?

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"Wisconsin Convoy" - Randi Rhodes

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Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Much Ado About Harry Baals

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

It's FORT WAYNE in 2012!

The Indiana Democratic Party has announced that Fort Wayne will be hosting the party's state convention in 2012. This marks the first time that the convention has ever been held outside of Indy, and is the end result of a large effort undertaken by local and third district party faithful:

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Sunday, October 03, 2010

Signs of the One Nation March in DC


























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Saturday, July 17, 2010

19 Facts You May Not Have Known About the Star Wars Universe

19 Things You Didn't Know about Star Wars
[Via: Online PhD]

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