The Power of UNITE-HERE; Michael Crabtree; South Carolina Episcopal Church; Left-Wing Disillusionment with Obama …

by on October 29, 2009

To the Editor:

I couldn’t be prouder of the Union I have been a member of and a Leader for these last thirty plus years of my life. This past year has been devastating for our members who have been unnecessarily torn between the Union they have been loyal members of and a Union that has tried to seduce them with empty promises and outright lies.

UNITE HERE has remained on the High Road throughout this unholy debacle. It is a crime, what Andy Stern and Bruce Raynor have done to the Labor Movement in general not to mention what they have done to the members of UNITE HERE. They should both be jailed.

Carol Carlson


To the Editor:

Today, October 27th, we descended on the Intercontinental Hotel at Howard and 5th streets in a major picketing that began at 7 a.m. and ended at 9 p.m. The line was solid, loud and replenished the whole day. We drove the visiting Ophthalmologists crazy with noise. They thought we confused them with otologists.

Intercontinental and other major hotels in San Francisco are stonewalling the Union and are being refractory to our demands for a fair contract. This action, today, is one of the major pushes the Union is thrusting forward to tackle the hotels. The hotels are adamant to cash in on the economic crisis as Wall Street did by drying all the cash from the taxpayers.

Mike Casey, Local 2 President must move boldly and swiftly to give teeth to the 92% strike vote before the Media kills the attempted strike as they did with BART. Casey must explain to the employees, who are being bombarded by management with propaganda against the Union, that they stand to gain big with a strike and that a weak settlement under the guise of a weak economy is totally suicidal. Those who have mortgages to pay, who have bills, medical expenses, etc. are the ones, in the long run, at risk if we get a weak contract. They must outweigh few months of struggle with years of bad wages, heavy work load, exorbitant medical bills, etc.

Nafiss Griffis
San Francisco


To the Editor:

Unite Here is definitely on the rise. With the victory in Philadelphia and elsewhere, Unite Here has defeated the raiding tactics used by Raynor and others who strongly support cutting secret deals with the employer in order to diminish or silence the voices of union members and working families. Clearly, Unite Here members understand that SEIU’s and Raynor’s strategy of colluding with the bosses is not the way a union should conduct business. If that were the case there would not be a need for workers to form a union that is built from the bottom up and recognizes that the membership are the true UNION.

The majority of healthcare workes in California are poised to give SEIU other stunning defeats across the state once the NLRB rejects SEIU’s frivolous law suits meant only to delay the inevitable. NUHW will be the major healthcare union in California and will begin to branch out across the country. Why you ask? It’s simple. Unions are not meant to be governed by Andy Stern and his appointed Washington cohorts. Decisions at the worksite are the members responsibilty and the representatives of the union are meant to help carry out the wishes of the workers themselves.

SEIU seems to be taking the easy way out. The way to build a strong union is to recognize those members with leadership potential and to help them so that they will be able to eduate other members to become involved, to become activists.

Unite Here rising! NUHW rising!

Francisco Martinez


To the Editor:

Ha ha! It’s hilarious how SEIU’s raid backfired so horribly on them. From what I can tell, the workers at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital are ready to kick SEIU to the curb in their upcoming election. SEIU can’t even get any traction there!

Keyser


To the Editor:

Nice job on this column. So here’s the obvious question. If Michael Crabtree can walk in off the street and play effectively without spending one minute in summer training camp, why are we being ripped off with the phony baloney practice games? Also, don’t forget about Nate Davis, the third string quarterback. He should be getting more reps. He’s looked consistently better than Hill or Smith whenever he gets the opportunity.

Jean Damu


To the Editor:

I was a delegate to the South Carolina Episcopal Convention. FOR THE RECORD, we NEVER VOTED on Resolution 5. The Standing Committee wanted to amend it at the last minute, and while copies were being made, several more amendments because pending, until finally no one could remember what we were supposed to vote on.

THUS, Amendment 5, was tabled UNTIL the regular Diocesan Convention in March. There was no VOTE for or against, it never got to that point. It was the last thing on the agenda, and everyone was exhausted, thus the decision to put it off, BUT, only until the next convention (in less that 6 months.)

Please make some attempt to ascertain the facts before you attack the good folk of South Carolina.

Thank you,
Gloria Reidinger
Grandmother


To the Editor:

It sounds like you’re equating criticism of (“disappointment with”) Obama with pessimism. But those really aren’t the same. And by doing it in the way you do (by coining a derisive term, “the ‘doom and gloom’ camp”; suggesting that people who don’t like the direction the government is going are “disconnected” with the real activists, etc.), you are discouraging criticism of Obama and of the government.

What I don’t read in your articles is any critical assessment of where working people are today — it’s not a pretty situation!– and how the Left can unite to address that. All I read is “don’t criticize Obama.” Leave Obama out of it — he is neither our savior nor the source of our problems. What we need to figure out, and you don’t give any help on this score, is: What should the Left do?

Chris Sturr


To the Editor:

Randy Shaw won’t be getting off the Obama bandwagon unless it rolls off a cliff. Given that the President is way too smart and politically skilled to allow that to happen, Shaw will be on board for the duration of this Administration. His self-appointed role is to get progressives to stomach it.

His main argument regarding left critics of the Obama Administration is fatally flawed. It’s not because we’re in an unchanging protest mode that many of us oppose the policies with the Administration. It is precisely because we have a very different agenda than the President.

We want to end the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; Single Payer health care, real environmental action not Cap and Trade; good jobs and services not cut backs and austerity; etc.

When leftist stand for those things, they are acting correctly. When they settle for the chump change Shaw describes, they have given away their power.

Yes, Shaw can always favorably compare the President with Republicans like Bush, Cheney, and McCain, but to paraphrase my mother and the high standards she upheld, “you’re comparing with that!?”

Radicals and progressives are correct to maintain their political positions in the face of the weak and floundering Obama Administration. Standing for what you believe in is an essential component of democracy.

Jonathan Nack


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