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AP: Boeing Dispute Is Headache For Obama

From a terribly concerned (about Obama) Associated Press:

Boeing labor dispute turns into headache for Obama

By Sam Hananel, Associated Press Wed Jun 29, 2011

WASHINGTON – The government’s labor dispute with Boeing Co. is turning into a political headache for President Barack Obama, giving his Republican rivals a fresh opening to bash the administration’s economic policies.

Do we have a monarchy? Is everything now only to be viewed through the prism of how it will affect the king? In fact, isn’t this a much bigger headache for Boeing? And what about the Boeing workers in South Carolina, who barely rate a mention in this entire article?

Or what about the ramifications this has for every other company trying to do business in the US?

From congressional hearings to presidential debates, outraged Republicans are keeping up a steady drumbeat of criticism over the National Labor Relations Board’s lawsuit against the aerospace giant.

Do you see how those dastardly Republicans work? They try to use everything to their political advantage. Even a harmless little misunderstanding like this. They are just trying embarrass Mr. Obama.

Obama addressed the case for the first time on Wednesday, declining to criticize or openly support the actions of the independent federal agency. But he said "as a general proposition, companies need to have the freedom to relocate," though they must follow the law when doing so…

Never mind that Mr. Obama has stacked the NLRB with his union goons, so that "independent" is the last thing it is. Nevertheless, Obama pretends his hands are clean.

And of course our media lets him get away with it. In fact, they help him promote the lie.

The NLRB alleges that Boeing retaliated against its unionized work force in Washington state by opening a new production line for its 787 airplane in South Carolina, a right-to-work state. The agency is not seeking to shut down the new plant, but wants a judge to order Boeing to return all 787 assembly work to Washington

Which of course is a distinction without a difference, since the South Carolina plant was only built to construct 787s.

The case — which could drag on for years — has become an unwanted distraction for Obama as he tries to mend relations with the business community and contend with polls that show growing public disapproval over his handling of the economy.

Which is to say Mr. Obama would have liked the NLRB to have forced Boeing to give in to the unions without anybody hearing about it. And, to be fair, the media did do all they could to keep this story out of the news.

It makes an easy target for Republicans, who call it a case of government overreaching at a time when the private sector is struggling to create new jobs. And it’s a major story in South Carolina — a bellwether early primary state in the GOP presidential race. Candidates are lining up to impress voters and the state’s Republican governor, tea party favorite Nikki Haley

Again, it’s all about how the nefarious Republicans are pretending to care to try to pander to the voters and the crackpot tea party.

Obama, ordinarily a reliable supporter of organized labor, has carefully avoided taking a position on the case.

That is, apart from stacking the NLRB with rabidly pro-union members. And not ordering them to back off. And letting the case drag on for years, as a warning to other companies.

"My hope is that even as this thing is working its way through, everybody steps back for a second and says, `Look, if jobs are being created here in the United States, let’s make sure that we’re encouraging that,’ " Obama said Wednesday.

Of course, as always, the only job Mr. Obama is concerned about is his own. In that respect ,he is just like the Associated Press.

But the issue became more awkward for Obama when John Bryson, his pick to head the Commerce Department and a former Boeing board member, openly criticized the lawsuit during a Senate confirmation hearing last week…

Poor Mr. Obama. He just can’t catch a break here.

Perhaps the best scenario for Obama would be for the case to be settled, an outcome that many labor experts expect.

And it doesn’t really matter how it is settled. Just as long as it disappears from the news. After all, even if Boeing is allowed to have its way for now, Mr. Obama can always ‘revisit’ the situation after the elections.

The important thing is to make the story go away during the campaign. They will have plenty of time to get even later. When nobody is looking.

Connie Kelliher, a spokeswoman for the machinists union that sought the complaint, said the union saw nothing in Obama’s remarks on Wednesday that deviate from his previous position that the case should run its course in the courts.

Meaning, drag out for years — and millions of dollars in costs to Boeing.

"We want to thank President Obama for reminding corporations of the importance of having positive labor relations, which is what the machinists union strives for," she said.

Well, we know that "having positive labor relations" is what Mr. Obama "strives for." And we’ve got the nearly $1 trillion dollar bill from his stimulus spending to prove it.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, June 30th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

11 Responses to “AP: Boeing Dispute Is Headache For Obama”

  1. Petronius says:

    It is interesting to watch Nerobama struggle to distance himself from the actions of his own appointees.

    Clearly AP regrets the high public visibility of the Boeing case, as it may tend to impinge on the regime’s ability to close factories and kill jobs, and perhaps ultimately it may reflect badly on Nerobama himself.

    If memory serves, one of the chief purposes of the US Constitution was to remove the impediments and interruptions to interstate commerce that had existed under the Articles of Confederation. Thus Hamilton declared the purpose of the commerce clause was to promote freedom of trade among the States. See The Federalist #11.

    We now seem to have come full circle, with the Federal government restricting free trade among the States and clamping down hard on all forms of economic activity.

    But does the Constitution really matter any more? After all, almost everything the Federal government has done since 1930 has been unconstitutional.

    • take_no_prisoners says:

      Petronious you are right on the mark! Steve, you need a like button on this site. I’ve been doing facebook a lot and I read comments like this and want to click like!

    • tranquil.night says:

      Excellent post as usual Petronius.

      You’re completely right about how the failures of the Articles of Confederation as they related to interstate commerce are not just fundamental to what drove the Constitutional Conventions, but the Founding Fathers realized were fundamental to the existence of the Union whatsoever. As I recall and GetBackJack probably knows much more, while Slavery was the overarching Ideological issue and institution which drove the Civil War, politically it had been seeded in long, long-simmering and ever widening chasms over perceived free-trade tinkering vis-a-vis tariffs between the export-friendly manufacturing North and the import-heavy Agrarian South.

      Quoth Washington from his Farewell Address:

      “While then every part of our country thus feels an immediate and particular Interest in Union, all the parts combined cannot fail to find in the united mass of means and efforts greater strength, greater resource, proportionably greater security from external danger, a less frequent interruption of their Peace by foreign Nations; and what is of inestimable value! They must derive from Union an exemption from those broils and Wars between themselves, which so frequently afflict neighbouring countries, not tied together by the same government; which their own rivalships alone would be sufficient to produce, but which opposite foreign alliances, attachments, and intriegues would stimulate and imbitter. .. In this sense it is, that your Union ought to be considered as a main prop of your liberty, and that the love of the one ought to endear to you the preservation of the other.”

      The unique American Federal system Hamilton and Washington ratified was based on wholly different fundamental economic precepts than even what Adam Smith advocated in the Wealth of Nations and other economic texts for the framers. That is why I say read WoN in conjungction with the Constitution and you’ll see that specifically the Federalists managed to implement policy (before their political demise) based on economic theories that were so radical even for their own time that much of it wasn’t embraced or validated by other economists for another 100 years, and some of it even longer. Many of the Founders even objected to it. The Liberals still reject a lot of it.

      Smith’s philosophy (which I’d describe in modern terms as Libertarian-agnostic) had removed the long-taught Economic Theories from St. Augustine on Personal Distribution and Utility, which is actually his claim to fame rather than bringing any notably new knowledge to the field. He was right to assert that there is no such thing as a naturally perfect or “equitable” market, which is a premise that combined with a moral or religious tone was how sovereign states were justifying social and economic tyranny in feudal times (not to mention present times). However, his elimination of the Theory of Utility (in my opinion) speaks to his personal bias in seeming to suggest a belief that human nature was created not only as innately self-interested but also selfish.

      Smith made no significant moral distinction between the individual and the state. All he recognized was the famous ‘invisible hand’ puppeteering the natural principle of correspondence between letting people be free and secure to produce, exchange and own property – and a rise in that civilizations’ wealth and power. That is why the Framers rejected the bulk of his economic advice, which at times contradicted even his own theories. But the French adopted his thinking as justification to rebel not just against their Ruling Class, but against their moral traditions and institutions as enemies of Liberty too – and then they turned right back to Social-Welfare model Statism until they were too broke and apathetic to defend themselves. Karl Marx adopted Smith’s Classical Economic Model – especially with regards to income – to argue that the Burgeoise Business Aristocracy of the Capitalist Society would always be instinctively compelled to suppress the working class that vastly outnumber them because of how the proletariat pose a threat to their power, wealth, and thus self-interest.

      A long corollary, but it brings me back to the exceptional American System. Our Founders knew that the Freedom to pursue Wealth wasn’t the only variable of the equation of how to produce a more perfect society; all you would inevitably end up with is another amoral Ruling Class, no matter how small and well-intentioned the government started out. If there was going to be any real chance of sustaining a Constitutional Democratic-Republic, it would take an educated and morally virtuous populous with strong socioeconomic ties to eachother, the limited-government values, founding institutions and documents, and the spirit of independence within the bounds of law and justice that they hoped would all come together to define the National Identity. In other words, they understood not just the Laws of Nature, which was a very popular literary work, but those of Nature’s God – which as has been said before, was a very carefully chosen phrase that was supposed to serve as a scientific, not just religious, assertion.

      It was a miraculous foundation birthed from a tremendous sacrifice in blood, sweat, and courage. The rest of the Kingdom has been for us to imagine and build, which despite tragedy at times when our spirit has frayed has been infinitely more miraculous when we are in Union. We’ve never been more than one generation from being destroyed, and boy how we’ve come to learn. Since January 20, 2009 the question has always been “how much is going to be lost?” Much too much. But we can reboot, restore and recover; the code for how to do so is eternally programmed into History and now, thank God, it is knowledge which is easier for the individual to access.

  2. BillK says:

    I’m just waiting for Boeing to say enough is enough and close the plant and move it overseas.

    They’re hemorrhaging orders to Airbus the way it is, so Boeing really can’t tolerate anything that might delay production or drive up costs.

    But that’s right – if they go down, I’m sure the Government would just bail them out anyway.

    Perhaps that should be their long-term play, given Airbus is European Government financed in part – something Boeing has long complained about – so why not join in?

  3. oldpuppydixie says:

    A”headache.” Yes…it’s just so inconvenient to lack those all important DICTATORIAL powers after 3 years of concerted effort. Poor Hussein…still blocked by that silly Constitution thing!

  4. BigOil says:

    What is stopping Boeing from building the plant and starting it up?

    They have all the state permits needed and the full backing of SC. What is the NLRB going to do, send in the Marines?

    Of course, the regime does have the 35 billion dollar Air Force tanker re-fueling contract as leverage against Boeing. Don’t think for a minute this bunch of thugs hasn’t brought this fact up to Boeing executives.

  5. Right of the People says:

    Although it will never happen, it would be great to see Boeing move its corporate operations to South Carolina and slowly move all the other production from Washington to South Carolina until they could close their WA facilities.

    Years ago in the 80s VW built a plant in Pennsylvania to assemble Rabbits. They built it in a town where the main employer had gone bankrupt and there was plenty of skilled labor who needed a job. Everything was great until after about 6 months of production the UAW weaseled their way in and unionized the workers. The first thing they did after forming their union was to go out on strike because they, while making a good wage with good bennies, weren’t making quite as much as their UAW counterparts in Detroit. Of course they weren’t paying union dues either.

    VW refused to negotiate and closed the plant. Fast forward two years later. VW decides their multimillion dollar investment sitting idle in PA is intolerable decides to reopen the plant. They hire back most of the previous employees but tell them if they try to unionize again they will close the plant again and never come back.

    Everything is going swell again when two union thugs show up and try to organize. By all accounts the two are drug out into the parking lot, beaten severely and told if they ever come back, the workers will finish the job. That plant is still in operation today and still union free.

    If only Boeing had the gonads to stand up to the union and Barry.

  6. David says:

    To bad the union can’t be forced to pay legal fees when they lose.

  7. Papa Louie says:

    “…companies need to have the freedom to relocate,” though they must follow the law when doing so…”

    Which law, Mr. President, the written law or the “living” and “evolving” law that exists only in the minds of progressives? The latter is why progressive bureaucrats and judges are so unreliable and unpredictable. Democrats think that is a good thing because it allows for “progress” without the burden of getting the consent of the people. But few job creators will risk their money to expand businesses or create new ones unless they can predict how laws and business regulations are going to be interpreted.

    Having fixed laws that were not subject to the whims of a king or bureaucrat is what made America different from other countries in the first place. It allowed us to become a free and prosperous nation. As long as we are subject to the ever-changing whims of King Obama and his court jester czars, the economy will never be able to recover. Why is that so difficult for Progressives to understand?

    “No man will contend that a nation can be free, that is not governed by fixed laws. All other government than that of permanent known laws, is the government of mere will and pleasure.”
    — John Adams

  8. Papa Louie says:

    “I’ll keep on giving you the same answer until I give you a different one. All right?”
    — President Obama; Jun 29, 2011

    I ran across the above quote from Obama when he was answering questions at a news conference. He was speaking about his “evolving” position on same sex marriage. But it struck me as the perfect example to contrast Obama’s evolving views with those of our founders, like John Adams and James Madison, who believed in the necessity of “fixed laws” for a free nation.

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood…or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is today, can guess what it will be tomorrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known and less fixed?
    — James Madison, Federalist Papers, No. 62, p. 381

  9. P. Aaron says:

    Obama is bad for economies and other living things.

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