The Oregonian Throws in with Sizemore, Loren Parks, and the Koch Bros

The latest anti-union initiative petition isn’t even close to gathering signatures yet, but already the right-wing propagandists at the Oregonian editorial board are jumping into the ring, ready to fight for the interests of corporate CEOs and billionaires.

antiunioncabalToday, the Oregonian editorial board came out with supportive words for Initiative Petition 9, which is the exact same kind of so-called “right to work” effort we’ve seen in other states led by right-wing politicians, like Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan. They’re peddled by the corporate lobbyists at ALEC, and funded by billionaires like the infamous Koch Brothers.

Oregonians have watched those other states fall into the Tea Party abyss, and now it looks like the fight is coming here. IP9 is part of a concerted national effort by large corporations and billionaires to take away the voice of middle-class families. Initiatives like these are used to make sure that the rich keep getting richer, while the middle-class pays the price.

Nevada multimillionaire and amateur sex hypnotherapist Loren Parks has funneled at least $6,000 into IP9, and tobacco lobbyist Mark Nelson’s Signature Gathering Company of Oregon collected the sponsorship signatures for the effort.

Loren Parks has funneled millions of dollars into initiatives in the past decade and a half, primarily through Bill Sizemore and Kevin Mannix. Most of his initiatives would have slashed taxes for the rich and cut funds from schools and basic services. Public employee unions have been the main opposition to Parks’ and Sizemore’s agenda to cut taxes for the wealthy and drain money from Oregon classrooms.

The last time a “right to work” initiative was proposed, its chief sponsor was… you guessed it: Bill Sizemore. It was 2008, and it didn’t qualify for the ballot.

Outraged about the Oregonian‘s right-wing agenda for the state? Sound off with a Letter to the Editor here.

5 Responses to “The Oregonian Throws in with Sizemore, Loren Parks, and the Koch Bros”

  1. JIm

    This initiative is welcome by most Oregon taxpayers. All employees should have the right to join the union or not join the union, to pay dues or not pay dues.

    The current arrangement guarantees that the public employee labor unions have a cache of funds to re-elect the the very officials who negotiate the labor contracts. This is an alarming conflict of interest to the people who must pay the bills….the taxpayers who are a “non-profit”.

    Labors unions should feel free to negotiate for most anything in “for-profit” organizations – GM, Bershire Hatheway, Micrsoft, etc. But, please, the taxpayer “owners” of school systems and public organizations must pay the bills through taxes funded by their salaries and pensions.

    This initiative, if passed, will benefit all Oregon citizen-employers of public employees.

    Reply
  2. Sheela

    We don’t know how the public feels about IP9, Jim; we haven’t put it to the test. I do believe that we have the right to join or not join unions, but if a worker is enjoying the rights and benefits accorded him by union negotiating, it’s fair to add to the pot; otherwise, he’s mooching; getting something for nothing. Now, if this worker doesn’t want a fair wage, health benefits, decent working hours, a safe work place, or time off, then that’s another story. As for your assertion that public employees should not presume to have union representation because their wages are being paid by us, the taxpayers: What these public employees do benefits the taxpayers. You’re talking about firefighters, police, teachers, infrastructure workers, office desk pilots who keep government systems ticking along… These people are also entitled to fair pay, safe working conditions, health care, pensions or retirement plans, and all the other necessities. Are we so mean and petty that we would demand a public employee work under demeaning, third world conditions? Be paid so low that they have to go on the public dole? Doesn’t the public support Social Services through our taxes? If we have to pay one way or the other, I’d rather give our public employees dignity and a living wage, health benefits and a pension. My share of all this is not that big a cut. You must know that the whole point of this ALEC-gendered idea is to break unions; and that it’s been used in other states, with devastating results. We need unions to speak collectively for us because individually, we can’t make enough noise for our representatives to hear us over the sound of corporate lobbying. Unions are OUR lobbyists. Think of it as voting. Would you vote for better wages, working conditions, and health care? Or would you vote to have no rights, no say in your own government? How little are you willing to work for?
    Unions bargain for the rights of ALL workers, not just union members.

    Reply
  3. Charlie Savoie

    Any worker who doesn’t want to be in a union can apply for a job in a non-union workplace. It is that simple. This is not about workers’ rights; it is about undermining unions.

    It always amazes me that whenever the so called “right to work” law is presented to the public, people don’t wonder why this so called right is the only worker right that big corporations support.

    Reply
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