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The 14 Trades General Presidents Continue to Show Their Colors – All Management All the Time – Teamsters Not Included Because They are not Beholding to Management.

James, Eric, Mark, Timothy, Jimmy, Doug, the other James, Terrence, Kenneth, Kevin, Brent, Michael, Frank & Warren are being shown up in every way by all of labor and not just the Teamsters! 

The numbers of workers on strike increased by over 300% in the last 2 years – but NOT the trades. Our management minions (aka trades’ general presidents) just sit on the sidelines showing their true colors.

And the rank & file more than appear content with losing on the organizing front. The few that are not, are shut down hard! We at Labor Rising know this firsthand because we trained most of them to win! Then they go back to the BS of – “our International has their own way of organizing”. All losing programs – “NET”.  Check out the FB memes. Tradesperson after tradesperson is pumped up with what all unions, other than the trades, are doing in the field. Taking management head on, but NOT the above-listed 14. It is clear that most tradespersons posting are proud to be in a union.

So do something about it.

The trades haven’t done one darn thing to raise the standards of workers. You have to go back decades to see any imprint the trades have had in a greater North American Labor MOVEMENT!

And Labor Rising has been crystal clear in just how impotent trades organizers have been, entirely due to the 14 general presidents’ deceitful practices of “training organizers”. All BS and fluff by design. Being an International Director of Organizing is the quintessential oxymoron.

Tons of mostly senior officers in suits pontificating about the art and science of organizing without any track record whatsoever past their egos and the fantasy land they live in. A title does not make you an organizer! Next to zero, if not a zero-track record in signing field-fought CBA’s (collective bargaining agreements) with THEIR signature on them.

Recruiting is NOT organizing – at best it is trying to stay relevant as a temp service in construction. Also, running recognition elections in the trades is just not going to get our market share up. We have a transient workforce unlike most of the other unions which have a fixed or known workforce. Labor Rising instructs on taking an organizing fight to the wallets of those that hire the contractors and subs in the trades. LR knows that we win by taking on the clients, social perception & credit of those hiring non-union contractors and their subs:  all end-users, developers, CM’s and their respective customers. It is the trades version of a corporate campaign mixed with several other tactics and grounded in research.

Next in order to the huge number of posts on what labor has done (other than the trades) is the number of solicitations for anyone and everyone to join the trades.

The trades’ story forever is that training is paid for and is the top caliber of training, and it is. Add in a legit benefits package. And yet, talk to any mostly young non-union future tradespersons and they will tell you what for. No school for 4 and 5 years. They generally are paid better at the outset. They absolutely get a per diem to a far greater degree than a union tradesperson. They only have to put up with the BS on the job and are home at night when working in the hood. All certifications are now mostly online or specialized schools. They have all of our training materials – just look in the back of their pickups. With the times changing so dramatically, and technology in construction delivery taking hold across North America, is a 4/5-year program that is even paid for relevant today?  

With the non/anti-union having 88% of all construction, the answer is absolutely not. And if we just give them a card but don’t change with the times, can we really blame them if they stick their card in their boot when the non-union contractors tell them too? Keep in mind those non-union contractors are highly likely to be double-breasted union contractors.

We, in the trades, created this monster by forfeiting our rights to go toe to toe with management and allowing the 14 GP’s to steer the ship for far too long.

Measurable numbers in context tell us that all the cooperation working with management has netted us less market share, conditions, pay & benefits. Measurable numbers over decades. A local CBA is being systematically removed by PLA’s. (Project Labor Agreements)

Meanwhile back in the field – just a few highlights:

  • UAW on strike across the board
  • SAG – AFTRA on strike
  • WGA – just settled
  • Teamsters UPS – settled
  • Of note – Kaiser Permanente – on the cusp
  • UNITE – HERE Local 11 maybe
  • Culinary & Bartenders maybe
  • Association of Professional Flight Attendants – don’t bet against Sara
  • Teachers and nurses all over the place; women run unions are in the trenches everywhere

Even the Bidster (Biden) is on a picket line!

So, the rank & file has to do the heavy lifting of ousting our 14 general presidents.

We take control by a well-run Work 2 Rule campaign. We get 2 hits with this, our GP’s and management. WE OWN THE WORK – NOT THEM!

Another tactic that will work is bringing our Locals under the Teamster banner. Why – because they win. Example: how many locals do you personally know of that have been under trusteeship by the International? There was a time when the Internationals had to show cause, but not anymore. Find out if your local is under an 8f or 9a and plan accordingly, especially if you are being sized up for an International takeover.

There is NO WAY to embarrass our Internationals’ officers into becoming an asset to a greater Labor Movement!

For over 12 years Labor Rising has said and backed up –

                                                           “if you see a good fight – get in it”

Let us all keep sitting on the sidelines and we will go down in history as wannabe labor warriors even though our rhetoric in the trades is Haymarket Square!

Danny L Caliendo


Labor Rising

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