THE AFL-CIO STEPS IN IT: ”A union official backed away Friday from an analogy in an e-mail in which he had linked Volkswagen’s Nazi past to the use of Hispanic workers building the automaker’s Chattanooga plant.”My reaction was not surprise that someone's calling someone else a Nazi—that happens a lot. It was surprise that an AFL-CIO spokesman was complaining about immigrant labor. You can see Tom Owens's letter, which he has backed away from, here.
In the future, everyone will be a Nazi for 15 minutes
Fast forward to 2009, and we see VW coming to the state of Tennessee whose businesses and workforce are suffering through the most severe economic downturn in a generation. And what do they do? They resort back to their dark past by making use of, and exploiting, a predominantly foreign workforce that eyewitnesses on the jobsite say is 80% non-English speaking Latino. And some of their contractors (Eisenmann - which also happens to be a German company) are even trying to utilize US State Department visas to bring in additional foreign workers from Eastern EuropeOwens, [Email him] works in the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO, which means he's complaining about workers building an auto plant, rather than working in one. Here's a non-crazy story about the same subject: Union Says VW Not Living Up to Promise Of Local Hiring The Chattanoogan, August 14, 2009. Does Owens not know that the AFL-CIO has been in favor of amnesty since the year 2000?
It is outrageous that the state of Tennesse, Hamilton County, and the City of Chattanooga would would negotiate an agreement (the "Memorandum of Understanding" with VW that gives them almost $600 million in Tennessee taxpayer money with no strings attached. For this agreement not to include a "local hire" provision mandating the use of Tennessee contractors and Tennessee workers - when the state has an unemployment rate that is one of the highest in the nation - can only be labeled an act of political malpractice and fiduciary malfeasance.