Labor Rising Logo
Call (630) 373-0774

“What are you going to do about it?”


That is what the senior leadership of the Internationals think with regard to the memberships of their unions.

Take the very controversial endorsement of Hillary Clinton by the Internationals over Bernie Sanders.

Facebook and other social media has been on fire for months now regarding this endorsement without any democratic input of the membership.

Some locals and District Councils leaders have actually polled their memberships to get the viewpoint of the members. Often these true leaders are put in the penalty box for doing so, especially if the memberships have favored Bernie.

We are in the 21st Century and the internationals have direct and inexpensive ways to poll the membership on what are their thoughts.

As a group, the Internationals follow the creed of William “Boss” Tweed of Tammany Hall in New York City   – who often said that “The way to have power is to take it.” Our Internationals on so many levels are out of step with membership.

They see for instance that North American workers want to again be members in unions – and yet fail to see that these future young workers overwhelmingly balk at becoming BT members. Our retention is dropping and future unionized workers want leadership that fights for their rights and not rolls over and gives them away without even a semblance of a fight.

It is the local and state Building Trades that do the heavy lifting of explaining away the increasing inconsistencies of imposed Internationals agreements usually forced down the throats of locals.

With regard to the endorsements of presidential candidates posts which I have seen, some viewpoints state that we elected these International leaders and they therefore have the right to exercise these decisions unilaterally on our behalf.

As members of our respective trades we do have rules which are outlined in our respective constitutions and by-laws that are binding. Endorsements, and for that matter a whole host of these activities that the senior leaderships take, fall outside of their powers and the constitution.

Most of the money used for political action in the Building Trades are VOLUNTARY CONTRIBUTIONS! As in YOUR CHOICE!

Somewhere at your hall is a little piece of paper you signed, more than likely unknowingly, that says you are making these contributions of your own free will. Personally I understand the need of unions to compete with business contributions and generally feel this is a much needed check off.

However – having said that, being dictated too is an entirely different matter – if it is my money. Literally all members I know want to have input on the important directions we collectively take. Huge numbers of members will give way to a majority position – as long as they got their say. When this money is not required as a condition of membership – the duty and responsibility of senior leadership is to get bona fide input on these very important matters is required.

Required if the Internationals expect to continue to get these voluntary funds – they are completely revocable by a member at any time. No checkoff times the membership = no funds to give. The membership holds the cards here and their patience is short.

Also the membership funds many other voluntary activities that have substantial amounts of money flowing to them. One is Labor- Management collaboration.

Think of this ROI (Return on Investment) on L/M Value on Display collaboration. Every number, in every area, measured over the decades that L/M has been around shows decreasing market share. The more we have tried to “sell” the trades, the lower the market share or ROI.

Here at Labor Rising/Labor Combat we know and can demonstrate that correlation to any reasonable person’s satisfaction. ONLY senior International, and a few BT leaders will not yield to this FACT.

Time for the Rank & File to consider drying up the money not mandatory per our constitution to effect change at the top of our Internationals. This money would be in much better hands in local and state BT leader’s hands.

“if you see a good fight – get in it”

Danny L Caliendo
Labor Rising/Labor Combat

This entry was posted in Labor Rising and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.