- Hardcover: 316 pages
- Publisher: Jameson Books, Inc.; First Edition edition (January 1, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1915463971
- ISBN-13: 978-0915463978
- ASIN: 0915463970
- Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 2.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,438,039 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Free Choice for Workers: A History of the Right to Work Movement First Edition Edition
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About the Author
George Leef is the executive director of the Pope Center for Higher Education Policy. A graduate of Duke University Law School, he has written widely on public policy subjects includng education, labor law, eminent domain, and the economics of the legal profession.
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Top customer reviews
The mere fact that most Right-to-Work laws are snuck through their respective state's legislative systems in violation even of court orders, is a sure sign that Conservatives don't want Democracy involved in the law making process. On December 12th, 2012, the fascist style tactics were enough to have Michigan State senator Brandon Dillon proclaim,
"Good ideas get debated, bad ones get rammed through, with police protection, during lame-duck sessions."
This book, in fact, was published by a leading think-tank on radical conservative propaganda; The John William Pope Foundation, whose leaders include a who's who of radical right-wingers.
- Stephen H. Balch is an American conservative scholar. (Source: The National Association of Scholars)
- Alan Kors, who writes pieces for both libertarian and conservative journals on political matters. (Source: Reason magazine)
- Abigail Thernstrom, a conservative political scientist. (Source: Official Biography from the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights)
The radical Right-wing agenda of Right-to-Work advocates has been historically touched on by their fellow Republicans moderates in the book Rule and Ruin: The Downfall of Moderation and the Destruction of the Republican Party, From Eisenhower to the Tea Party (Studies in Postwar American Political Development),
"A fanatical neo-facsist political cult of right-wingers in the GOP, driven by a strange mixture of corrosive hatred and sickening fear that is recklessly determined to control our party or destroy it!" - Republican Senator Thomas Kuchel 1966.
In a far more well received and groundbreaking book, Confessions of a Union Buster Martin Levitt, one of the most prolific union busters of the 1970's and 80's explains the mob-like tactics routinely exercised by his industry. Vandalism of cars, threats of bodily harm, nefarious lies spread about infidelity of union organizers, obstructionism, fraud and negligent misrepresentation are standard hallmarks of union-busting "labor consulting firms". How is this all allowed to take place so easily and undetected by the government? Whereas regulations like the Taft-Hartley Act of 1946 and the Landrum-Griffith Act of 1959 simultaneously make the process both completely transparent and thereby shackle union organization, there are NO regulations in place controlling "labor consulting firms". While robbing millions of Americans of the essentials for the dignity of a living wage, corporate conglomerates spend millions of dollars every year to lavish union busters with life-styles of excess including - as Levitt explains and admits to himself - prostitutes, a brand new flag-ship car every year, all expense paid trips to sunny beaches, and none-stop rivers of booze, drugs and excess.
Shall I bring up the crimes committed against union workers for simply exercising their freedom of association under The Constitution? The book History of American Labor exposes an American history scarred with the thalidomide of wealthy business owners and robber-barons killing their employees in the name of profit.
After scores died in previous years while toiling under dangerous conditions at The Homestead Steal-mill, finally, in June of 1892 workers responded by locking themselves in to protest the abysmal working conditions. William Frick - under the blessing of Andrew Carnegie, owner of the mill - called in The Pinkerton Security squad who abruptly opened fire on the unarmed workers, killing 9 and wounding 12 more.
The murderous rampage of business owners didn't stop there. It continued with:
1897 The Lattimer Massacre: 19 unarmed striking immigrant killed
1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire: 146 garment workers, mostly women, killed.
1912 Lawrence Textile Strike: 1 woman shot
1914 The Ludlow Massacre: 19-25 unarmed strikers and their families killed (including 2 women and 11 children)
1915 Williams & Clark Fertilizing Company Massacre: 1 unarmed striker killed and 20 more injured
1917 The hanging of union organizer, Frank Little
1917 Bisbee Deportation, some 1,300 striking Arizona mine workers were deported from their community at rifle point
1920 Anaconda Road Massacre: 1 dead 16 injured by gun-fire
1927 The Columbine Massacre: 6 unarmed men machine-guned to death
In my opinion, only the purist of idiots would read Free Choice for Workers and believe in the merits of "Right-to-Work-for-Less". An unfortunately receptive population of the gullible await. This book is garbage and a cancer to true Freedom and Liberty in the USA. It's no surprise that this book has tanked so badly that before I left mine, it only had one review. The author should be tried for sedition! The veil of propaganda has been pulled from the face of corporate rent-seeking legislation to reveal the head of a Medusa and her name is "Right-to-Work".
Right to Work occupies an anomalous position in American life. On the one hand, Americans overwhelmingly endorse the idea that no one should be compelled to join or support a labor union in order to get or keep a job. On the other, the fight to advance that principle tends to take place in relative obscurity. That makes the National Right to Work Committee, the focus of Leef's book, both one of America's most important political organizations, and one of its least well known.
To the extent it is well-known, the National Right to Work Committee is often thought of as part of the American conservative movement. But as Leef makes clear, this is more an effect than a cause. Linda Chavez demonstrated in her 2004 book Betrayal: How Union Bosses Shake Down Their Members and Corrupt American Politics how the American Left is bought and paid for by Big Labor. From the standpoint of practical politics, therefore, opposing union-boss coercion often becomes a "conservative" position. Despite Big Labor propaganda, Right to Work is neither a corporate front nor an anti-worker position. In recounting the history of the Committee and the fight against forced unionism, Leef shows that Big Business has been, at best, AWOL. More often, it has sided with the union bosses' strong-arm tactics in pursuit of the shameful lie of "industrial peace." In fact, the fight has been led by heroic union members, small employers, and other principled individuals. The price some of them have had to pay for their principles -- up to and including death at the hands of union thugs -- is a sobering fact that many Americans may, yet again, not be aware of.
"Free Choice for Workers" is a fascinating look at American labor history. But it's also a revealing peek inside a most effective political organization. Some of the political pelts hanging on the Right to Work trophy wall include not only the defeat of common-situs picketing in the 1970s and the Pushbutton Strike Bill in the 1990s, but also the electoral defeat of Big Labor puppets like former U.S. senators Gail McGee and Al Gore, Sr. Additionally, as Leef explains, the National Right to Work Committee pioneered the use of direct mail (the cornerstone of the modern conservative movement) for mobilization and fundraising. Similarly, the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation was "the first conservative nonprofit legal aid organization and it blazed the trail for the entire conservative litigation movement" (p. 149). I'd bet few "movement conservatives" realize quite how much they owe to Right to Work heroes like Reed Larson.
Finally, "Free Choice for Workers" is a disturbing study of how the Left works year after year, decade after decade, to restrict the rights of employers, property owners, and working men and women. Their language of "solidarity" and "collective security" comes straight out of the socialist hymnal. But their true objective is expanding their own empire of wealth and power. George Leef has given us yet more proof of just how far down Hayek's road to serfdom America has already traveled.
If turning the country around can be achieved through political action (a debateable question, though outside the scope of this book), success or failure will have a lot to do with the success or failure of the Right to Work movement. And that makes this book a very important one indeed.