From the Club for Growth
Q: When is a picket line not a picket line? A: When AFL-CIO officials cross it!
The Center for Union Facts Finds AFL-CIO Union Execs Living Large on Members’ Dime
SAN DIEGO, CA -- Under a gentle breeze on a sunny afternoon, Pacific Ocean waves quietly crested and crashed onto the soft sandy beaches at the foot of the exclusive Hotel del Coronado, which played host to the AFL-CIO executive council annual meeting this week. But while the Center for Union Facts followed the luminaries of labor out here fully expecting to find members' dues funding this lavish lifestyle, even we weren't ready for the union execs' shocking hypocrisy: the hotel where labor leaders are spending their members' money is currently being picketed by a union in a labor dispute!
As shown in our photo album, a Carpenters local isn't happy that the hotel uses a contractor that has remained union-free. But the AFL-CIO hotshots apparently don't believe in solidarity when it gets in the way of a good vacation on their members' dime.
And that dime turns into real money pretty quickly. The hotel itself is as expensive as it is beautiful, and rooms can easily run $600 per night or more. The spa is extra, and so is the food. But the hefty price tag didn't seem to slow the labor officials we saw, one of whom clocked more than 5 hours doing the members' work at a seaside bar, alternating between $3.25 bottles of San Pellegrino and highballs of whiskey on the rocks. For an idea of what the final tab could be, we checked the AFL-CIO's bill for its 2004 meeting at the Drake Hotel in Chicago. There they racked up a bill of $224,000 -- categorized as "union administration." That's a big party for a small group. With only 53 council members, that’s more than $4,000 a head.
The Center for Union Facts thinks it's important to highlight the hypocritical and selfish use of dues by union officials. So, we've put together another ad summing up the AFL-CIO's great boondoggle junket of '06 in the form of a postcard from labor leaders to their members. And just to make sure they got the point, we hand-delivered a few of our post cards to the AFL-CIO's top brass.
There are pictures at the site.