Janus op-ed in the Daily Journal
Today’s Daily Journal celebrates the first day of the new Supreme Court Term by publishing an array of op-eds on pending cases, including my own take on Janus v. AFCSME. That case will decide whether to overrule Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, a 40-year old decision that grants to public employee unions an extraordinary benefit available to no other association in the country: the right to steal money from non-members to lobby for their political goals. Janus has the potential to restore First Amendment rights to all workers who choose not to support public employee unions. A taste:
Abood went wrong when it failed to recognize the inherently political character of all public employee union actions — even those connected to collective bargaining. The difference between public and private sector unions is that public sector bargaining is a political process, directly involving the whole public, concerning the allocation of scarce taxpayer government resources. That is why all of the Supreme Court’s attempts to distinguish public employee union collective bargaining from other types of political and ideological activities have proven illusory. No such logical distinction ever did, or can, exist.
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Before making a decision, most organizations take into account the costs and benefits of a proposed action, and will change course if the costs outweigh the benefits. Unfortunately, the federal government takes a different approach…
When the Cherk family applied for a permit to split their large residential parcel into two lots, the County of Marin demanded they pay $40,000 into the County’s “affordable housing” fund as a condition of the permit. The Cherks objected, but got nowhere with County officials and ultimately paid the fee under protest.