Andy Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), was recently described by CBS News’ Leslie Stahl as "a new breed of union boss" who is "known as a street fighter and will use hardball tactics against companies." That is generally understood by the non-union world to mean whatever it takes – no matter how unfair, untruthful or underhanded.
"Dirty pool" is the SEIU’s game of choice.
Which is why it should come as no surprise that the SEIU is one of the leading advocates for an illegal alien amnesty program. As a top SEIU official once told the liberal Air America radio network, "You need to legalize the 11 million people who are here on an undocumented status. Many of them are our members." Which is why Stern’s underlings were key organizers behind the massive illegal immigration marches in Los Angeles this spring, handling "security" and, according to the L.A. Times, coordinating "the more than 100 buses that dropped off marchers from throughout California, Las Vegas and a few Southwestern cities."
Under the circumstances, perhaps a name change is in order: The SEIAU – Service Employees and Illegal Aliens Union.
While past union bosses rightly recognized that illegal aliens were – er, how to put this gently, um, ILLEGAL – and drove down wages for American workers, the new breed see only a huge source of new, under-educated, unskilled, easily-led, ignorant dues-payers. Any adverse effect they might have on American society is outweighed by the fact that these illegal meal-tickets will keep the new breed of union bosses living high off the hog in the comfortable fashion they’ve become accustomed.
But it’s not just SEIU’s recruitment efforts of illegal aliens which casts this "new breed" of union agitators in such poor light in the public’s eyes; it’s their disingenuous, if not downright dishonest, "negotiating" tactics, as well. Consider, for example, the SEIU’s current war on hospitals. To hear the union tell it, you’d think hospital management couldn’t care less if patients by the truckload dropped dead on their gurneys – as long as the hospitals continued to make a profit.
According to Reuters, the SEIU is threatening to strike three California hospitals later this month, claiming the hospitals are chronically understaffed. They’re demanding that the union be granted equal votes on staffing decisions with hospital management. What a lovely negotiating tactic: trying to scare the tar out of the sick and elderly with false claims of insufficient numbers of dues-paying clerical workers, nurses and janitors.
Ditto SEIU tactics in Las Vegas, where union agitators bemoan "the stress, strain, and danger that staff encounter every day in the hospitals because of unsafe staffing levels." One union nurse even whines uncontrollably about a week-end secretary being eliminated. "We have critically ill patients on life support who need our constant attention to keep them alive," union agitator Atchala Wongkovit says. "Are the patients less sick on the weekends?"
Yes, according to the SEIU the only thing keeping patients on life support alive is a dues-paying weekend union secretary. I guess that means critically ill patients will be keeling over by the dozens every Saturday and Sunday from this point forward. Somebody better alert the funeral homes so they can beef up their own secretarial staff on Mondays.
The union is also demanding a "forced union dues clause" and a "no escape" dues check-off clause which would make it "even harder for nurses and techs to change their minds and stop paying the union." That’s the SEIU’s way.
They’re the real-life Borg for vulnerable workers who don’t know any better: "You will be assimilated; resistance is futile."
Yes, the SEIU is the face of a new breed of union agitators. It’s a face only a mother could love.