The so-called "Center for Union Facts" launched a $10 million ad campaign against unions in the Friday New York Times by comparing unions to Kim Jong Il and his successor Kim Jong Un. The full-page color ad ran on page A5.
"In North Korea, people don't get real change," the ad states, along with a picture of the late Kim Jong Il and his successor Kim Jong Un. "American union members don't either."
"Fact: Fewer than 10% of employees in unions voted to join their union. In most cases, the employees who voted for the union are dead or gone. The Employee Rights Act provides union members a guaranteed vote every three years on whether to continue paying union dues. It's time for a new labor day."
The falsely-named "Employee Rights Act," sponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Rep. Tim Scott (R-SC), is little more than an attempt to weaken the rights of working families so that they can be paid less, have benefits like pensions and health care taken away, be fired more easily and be forced to work in less safe conditions.
The logic of the ad is particularly bad. Supporters of the ad opposed the recall of Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin, showing that they don't really care about the right of the people to democratically have a chance to change their mind about the results of an election. Furthermore, the supporters of the ad aren't calling for the Constitution to be re-ratified every three years, or for citizens to have the right to approve every individual spending item that government pursues. Certainly, for instance, they would oppose the idea that the public have an opportunity to vote on defense spending and things like the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Not to mention that the idea of comparing unions, who fight for the rights of working families, to communist dictators who murder people and deny them all rights, is not only an insult to working families, but to the victims of those dictators as well.
The Center for Union Facts is a conservative front group that does anything but provide facts about unions. It is a project of Rick Berman, who does little more than try to bust unions on behalf of his corporate benefactors. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington describes him:
Richard Berman is a Washington, D.C.-based hired gun who uses front groups to defend his corporate clients against the public interest. Using his lobbying and consulting firm, Berman and Company, as a revenue vehicle for his activities, Berman runs at least 23 industry-funded projects, such as the Center for Union Facts, and holds 24 "positions" within these various entities.