MAGICAL THINKING: ROUND II
Now according to Utah Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) and Chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee the less than 10% of the unionized American workforce are a dire threat to America's national security. Through some twisted logic, well, twisted only if you are a rational thinking person as opposed to an ultra right wing Tea Party Congressional darling, apparently Federal employees are preventing the Government from protecting us against all sorts of terrorists attacks. In fact, Representative Chaffetz published an op-ed piece in the Washington Times recently entitled "How Collective Bargaining Undermines Cybersecurity." That's right. Unions negotiating contract terms with their employers - in this case the Federal Government - undermines national security.
Now if you think that this claim resembles nothing more than the rampant voter fraud that Voter -ID laws are designed to thwart (but, in reality, are useless in preventing the type of voting fraud that actually - in reality, let's say - takes place) you win today's intelligence jackpot. You see, Chaffetz's fact-less claim is not about national security or cyber security in any way, shape or form. What it is really about is the continuation of the right wing campaign to destroy unions in the United States.
His hearing over this vital national security issue, resembles nothing more than the similarly fact-less hearings he conducted against Planned Parenthood not six months ago. This, folks, is your Republican controlled House of Representative at work.
The impetus for this destruction of unions? Well, a Wall Street Journal opinion piece last year claimed that American Federation of Government Employees (of which I was a member at one time) "made it harder" to protect Federal files by filing a grievance after Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) stopped employees from using personal e-mail accounts from agency computers. (Do I detect a bit of Hillary E-Mail Collateral Damage here?)
Bit ICE has lost the dispute. Twice. Once before a Federal arbitrator and then through a decision from Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA). The Federal Government has had standard dispute resolution procedures in place for decades now. Once could argue that such procedures are time consuming, wasteful of taxpayers money (if you are anti-government-daily-worker-bees) and could conceivably be termed anti-thetical to the Tea Party's "No Government" mantra. But a national security threat? Really?
Here's how Chaffetz interpreted the FLRA decision:
"In essence, the decision effectively established that the agency could not do anything to reduce its security risks to its information systems without first providing the union with an opportunity to bargain." And, "The current interpretation of the FLRA opinion is dangerous. If agency directors are obstructed from taking immediate action to protect employees' information without first going through collective bargaining, Federal agencies are more vulnerable to attack."
All of which is simply preposterous. We are talking about Federal slugs having G-Mail or Yahoo e-mail accounts on their government computers. Filing a complaint with a Federal dispute resolution has nothing to do with "collective bargaining" or "unions." Every Federal employee has this right, union member or not. This would be tantamount to saying that every time a Federal employee files a complaint with the FLRA, a Federal Agency is prevented from taking any steps whatsoever. And God alone knows how many such complaints are filed each and every day. For a Federal Government employee, Chaffetz seems to know precious little about how Federal Agencies actually work.
Here's what the AFGE said about all of this:
"There is truly no limit to the depth that anti-union lawmakers will stoop in their ongoing crusade to suppress the workers' voice at the job site. The argument has no credibility on its face, and bad intentions at its heart."
Sure, as an ex-union member (I was one of two of us who organized our office back in the 1990's) and ver much pro-workers' rights in corporate ruled America today, I am biased. But the AFGE got it exactly right. Just like the investigations into Planned Parenthood selling baby parts and Hillary Clinton issuing a "stand down" order in Benghazi, there is simply no truth to the claims that Chaffetz is making in this case. Let me rephrase that last bit: "MAKING UP IN THIS CASE." There, I fixed it.
There is Nothing, Undo, Zip, Nada that is truthful about Chaffetz's claims.
It's Chaffetz who's dangerous to America not the AFGE. This guys needs to go the next time he's up for re-election. He is as un-American as they come.
Below is the "evidentiary chart" corrected for the erroneously graphed figures:
Below is Jason graphed as he should be:
Have a good unionized day!