business news in context, analysis with attitude

I got the following email late last week from an MNB user; it expresses sentiments that clearly must be taken seriously:

This past year Congress passed an onerous labor bill commonly referred to as Card Check or Free Choice Act which is a description that belies the real message. Unions are using their horsepower with the Democratic Congress to create legislation that will, in fact, eliminate the ability of employees to vote in a NLRB supervised election if the union gets signed cards from 51% of the people. Management would have to recognize the union without an NLRB election, and if an agreement was not reached within 90 days, a binding contract would be presented to management by law. For non-union companies this is devastating.

For over 1½ years, I have been trying to get FMI tor react to this major issue without success. Tim Hammonds and John Motley have acknowledged that the negative response from membership was significant and, yet, they idly sit by waiting for the next Congress to convene. It is clear to this observer that this bill will be another slam-dunk even though the President vetoed the first bill. Likely, it will be among the first to be presented during the next Congressional session.

I have repeated posed questions to FMI that we need to re-brand the Free Choice Act or the Card Check to something more provocative, i.e., the Union Payola Bill. I have repeatedly requested that FMI look at the employee signature card that unions hand out and consider a warning that would tell employees that they are likely giving up their right to a free, open election. In other words, they are losing their vote to a union who will make the decision for them.

Thus far, FMI has been unwilling to proactively deal with this issue … a very serious problem for all non-union operators, no matter what business they’re in. This is forcing me to seek other alliances.

FMI is, of course, invited to respond.

Plus, further discussion of last week’s hog farmer email:

If they cared about animals they would have chosen a different line of work. You won’t find any true animal lovers in the slaughter business. Obviously they care about food safety and wouldn’t want to put sick meat into the market but I think that’s the extent of their concern for the well-being of the animals.

That hog farmer said something about giving the animals “the hand-on care they deserve.” What did they do to “deserve” to be raised in confinement then killed at a young age besides having the poor judgment to be born a hog?

I know I’m going to get into trouble for this, but…

I agree completely that animals should not be treated cruelly before being slaughtered for food. But let’s not lose track of the fact that they are, in fact, food. Being slaughtered is their role in the food chain. It has nothing to do with judgment or the treatment they deserve. It has to do with being meat that is going to end up on my grill.

Again, I am not advocating cruelty to animals. But I have trouble with the notion that people in the meat supply business all hate animals (though it may be overstating the case to say that they are animal lovers). I just think they understand their role in the food chain…which is to provide it.

Responding to last Friday’s rant about the Rachael Ray controversy, in which Dunkin’ Donuts knuckled under to pressure to remove an ad from the Internet because some people though she was wearing a scarf that resembled a garment worn by terrorists, MNB user Steven Ritchey wrote:

In light of the Rachel Ray controversy, some people do have way too much time on their hands, too little common sense … I can understand Dunkin’ Donuts quandary, do I tick off the conservative right, the moral majority, or do I pull an ad that won’t matter that much in the first place. Though of course, regardless of how much noise they may make, I don’t think the moral majority or conservative right is that large of a group. I’m too much like George Carlin anyway as I heard him say one time, “I like to (tick) off any group that takes itself too seriously”. My suggestion to this lady, save your outrage for the CEO who loots his company and leaves his employees holding the bag, or the company who makes record profits off a product the American economy is built around ( put in your favorite oil company here) yet says in yesterdays paper that fossil fuels are the fuel of the future. Those are the people I want to see the religious right go after.

Had a brief mention last week about how a California company was looking for ways to recycle cork….which led to several emails.

MNB user Amy O’Hara wrote:

Was interested to see the mention about recycling cork -- there are a number of manufacturers now producing cork floor tiles -- it's warm to the touch, soft underfoot, and comes in gorgeous colors! (I don't work for any of them -- but work for a green building material manufacturer, so I see it regularly.)

At the moment, I'm still using mine to make trivets, bulletin boards -- and a decorative wreath (no, I'm not going to be mistaken for Martha Stewart any time soon...the bulletin board and trivets are particularly good uses for corks -- they're heat-resistant, and are a constant conversation starter for the wines you've tried…)

And MNB user Kat Chociej wrote:

In your column today you mentioned you weren't sure what recycled wine corks may be used for. I believe cork is being used as an environmental option for flooring. Someone should come up with some collaborative effort in having consumers return their corks to the stores or to a central repository that the flooring makers can then use and sell at "green" home improvement stores, like one we have here in Seattle called ecohaus, formerly The Environmental Home Center prior to it being burned down.

Also mentioned last week that while the newspaper stories seem to be focusing on teenagers who cannot find summer jobs, my 19-year-old son Brian has three…which led MNB user Joe Cannon to write:

Jobs are available for those who want to work. I’ve reminded Brandon often that I put myself through school by working day and night, sleeping but 4-5 hours. My Ohio Wesleyan University son Brandon a Spanish major is also working 3 jobs this summer. He is working a property maintenance job in Columbus inner city putting his Spanish to good use as he cleans and paints property in some Hispanic neighborhoods. (he came across a live copperhead last week in some overgrown grass, and also inadvertently helped to shut down a prostitution house where he noticed guys coming/going every hour) . He is also loading trucks at night at a local appliance store, as well as doing some lawn mowing and babysitting on the weekend. While he won’t be studying abroad this fall, he will be heading to Spain in the spring of his senior year. ( I would like to join him.)

My daughter is the “cart girl” at a local country club as well as waiting tables at night during her summer break. Next summer will be booked with a marketing internship for her.

As my second grade teacher in Greenfield OH Mrs. Richardson stated many times, “can’t died in the poorhouse”

Wait a minute. It’s only June 2, and your son already has found a snake and helped to shut down a brothel?

What the hell is going on out there in Ohio?

KC's View: