Wisconsin: Largest unions pay leaders well, give extensively to Democrats

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    Mar 03, 2011 11:22 PM GMT
    http://www.jsonline.com/news/statepolitics/117290533.html

    On the surface, the fight between the governor of Wisconsin and organized labor is about balancing state budgets and collective-bargaining rights. Behind the scenes, hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation to top labor leaders as well as campaign contributions to Democrats could be in jeopardy.

    Union treasuries - filled by dues paid by union members - not only fund programs benefiting union members and their families. The money they collect also pays six-figure compensation packages for labor leaders and provides millions of dollars for Democratic causes and candidates.

    The Center for Public Integrity found compensation for leaders of the 10 largest unions ranged from $173,000 at the United Auto Workers to $618,000 at the Laborers' International Union of North America, and almost $480,000 for the president of the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees. The latter is the target of GOP governors in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee and Kansas.

    The union reports, filed with the Department of Labor, list compensation for all union employees and officers. Salaries make up the biggest portion, but other benefits can include tens of thousands of dollars for meal allowances, mileage allowances and entertainment. Health care and pension contributions are not specifically addressed.
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    Mar 04, 2011 2:32 AM GMT
    The head of the US Chamber of Commerce earned $3,550,000 in salary and bonus for 2009, and $1.4 million in retirement and other benefits, and received nearly $11,000 for his healthcare coverage.

    The head of the American Petroleum Institute earned $4.3 million.

    The head of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association earned over $600,000.

    The head of the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association earned over $500,000.

    So what's your point other than that those union leaders on average earn far less than those representing other industries?
  • musclmed

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    Mar 04, 2011 2:42 AM GMT
    It really doesn't matter who earns what, as long as the members want to pay them to represent the union....fine.

    But a employee shouldn't be mandated to pay union dues if he doesnt want to. (Right to work states are fair)

    However public employees who abuse sick rules to jerryrig overtime, and bus-drivers who make more than the mayor of a city set up the background for the attitudes against those leaders.


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    Mar 04, 2011 2:44 AM GMT
    musclmed saidIt really doesn't matter who earns what, as long as the members want to pay them to represent the union....fine.

    But a employee shouldn't be mandated to pay union dues if he doesnt want to. (Right to work states are fair)

    However public employees who abuse sick rules to jerryrig overtime, and bus-drivers who make more than the mayor of a city set up the background for the attitudes against those leaders.




    If you work in a unionized industry or workplace, your benefits and pay are bargained for by the union. To not pay dues would be getting something for nothing.

    And please site the bus driver who earned more than the mayor. I'd love to see that one.
  • musclmed

    Posts: 3273

    Mar 04, 2011 2:51 AM GMT
    Both articles below chronicle the tip of the iceburg. Both articles are from local papers. And Both are a clear year before any of this nonsense going on.

    The bus drivers were Madison Wisconsin bus drivers.


    Seen as an example in 2006 where it was shown that prison system employees would call in sick to there scheduled shifts then rack up overtime pay for working the total scheduled hours. This is done to artificially stack up 3 years of top pay for a larger pension.


    High paid bus drivers.
    http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/govt_and_politics/article_24af32d4-13f4-11df-86b2-001cc4c002e0.html
    Wisconsin State JournalMadison's highest paid city government employee last year wasn't the mayor. It wasn't the police chief. It wasn't even the head of Metro Transit.

    It was bus driver John E. Nelson.

    Nelson earned $159,258 in 2009, including $109,892 in overtime and other pay.






    Below shows how prison guards call into there own shifts sick then work the prior shift to make overtime for the same amount of hours/week.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/wisconsin/29511574.html



    So whether I like it or not I should have to pay into a Union, sounds real democratic to me. Self determination? what a dance one has to do to logically defend mandatory union membership.


    Im so glad that vouchers are starting to come into the conversation. In fact they can just abandon the whole collective bargaining sticking point and just allow the funding to follow the student.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Mar 04, 2011 11:47 AM GMT
    musclmed saidIt really doesn't matter who earns what, as long as the members want to pay them to represent the union....fine.

    But a employee shouldn't be mandated to pay union dues if he doesnt want to. (Right to work states are fair)

    However public employees who abuse sick rules to jerryrig overtime, and bus-drivers who make more than the mayor of a city set up the background for the attitudes against those leaders.




    Fine ...... when my Mutual Plan allows me to say what corporation gets my money I'll back you up 100%
    Simple as that

    Till then your argument doesn't mean anything
  • musclmed

    Posts: 3273

    Mar 04, 2011 2:57 PM GMT
    anyone should be able to unionize.

    But we should also have to right to opt out.


    For some this is a fly in the ointment ( self - determination)

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    Mar 04, 2011 3:21 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 saidIf you work in a unionized industry or workplace, your benefits and pay are bargained for by the union. To not pay dues would be getting something for nothing.


    So when it comes to the unions, everybody must pay.

    But when it comes to Federal income taxes, 48% of households not having to pay any Federal income taxes while getting all the benefits (and then some) that every other citizen who does pay Federal income taxes receives ... that's just fine with you.


    First, these are two completely different issues as government is there to serve and guard the welfare of all citizens, not just those who pay income tax.

    Second, as has been pointed out to yo ad nauseum, though a percentage of people do not pay income tax, they pay a range of other federal taxes.

    Third, 60% of corporations (who are considered people, after all) pay no income tax. So what's more egregious? A person who earned $25,000 a year paying no income tax, or a corporation with billions in profits paying no income tax?

    That said, perhaps everyone should pay some percentage in income tax, even if it was nominal below a certain income level.
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    Mar 04, 2011 3:47 PM GMT
    Christian73 saidThat said, perhaps everyone should pay some percentage in income tax, even if it was nominal below a certain income level.


    I would like to see a 5% or 10% flat tax (tiered by income), without deductions, write-offs, or Byzantine loopholes.

    And anyone under $50,000USD per annum paying zero tax.