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Cathy Mincberg, MESD, and Blumenauer top Grinch election!

Over 150 people crowded into the JwJ Holiday Party at the Peace House to celebrate the season, learn about all seven nominees and cast their ballots for Grinch of the Year.
Cathy Mincberg, PPSD, Elected Grinch of the Year

Over 150 people crowded into the JwJ Holiday Party at the Peace House to celebrate the season, learn about all seven nominees and cast their ballots for Grinch of the Year.

The nominations included several skits. One group of workers came from the picket line at MESD 12 hours earlier to do their impressions of the board. Another skit dramatized the harsh reality of immigration law by conducting a raid and separating a young mother from her 5 month old child.Cathy "Grinchberg" was there in her Texas cowboy hat, getting visits from the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future.

After some last minute horse-trading, the final votes were cast, and Cathy came out on top! In second place—and certainly the strike-ending settlement reached a few hours earlier was a huge factor—the MESD board. In a surprisingly strong finish, Earl "Free Trade" Blumenauer nabbed the bronze medal of Grinchiness. Next were Patricia Smith of Unitus, the immigrant-bashing Dept. of Homeland Security, Chris Patterson of Freightliner and Beef Northwest's John Wilson.

The party was a great way to cap off a very busy year, and an especially active last few weeks. In addition to all the fun and community building, we were able to raise over $2500! If you would like to make a last minute contribution to the Grinch Solidarity Fund, send in a check today to:
Portland Jobs with Justice, 6025 E Burnside, Portland, OR 97215

Lastly, I want to thank everyone who helped bake something, staff the event, sold and bought tickets, and nominated a Grinch. And a huge thanks to the awesome people at the Peace House—our favorite event of the year would not be the same without you!

Happy Holidays, and keep an eye out for the delivery of the Grinch award—we might need your help!

Final Results:
1. Cathy Mincberg, PPSD
2. MESD board
3. Earl "Free Trade" Blumenauer
4. Patricia Smith of Unitus
5. Dept.of Homeland Security
6. Chris Patterson of Freightliner
7. Beef Northwest's John Wilson

Congratulations to all of the nominees!

Cathy Grinchberg "Texas' other village idiot."

Portland Public Schools Chief Operations Officer Cathy Mincberg made history in the Houston Independent School District for her work to get Rod Paige hired as Superintendent. Paige went on to become Bush-appointed Secretary of Education. During their tenure as HISD administrators they were instrumental in outsourcing living wage jobs for the district's service employees. When Cathy was run out of Texas, she landed right here in Portland and promptly proposed a 30% wage cut to Portland school custodians. Let's show Cathy how in Oregon, public interest will always prevail over corporate profit. Send Cathy Grinchberg back to Texas!


Patricia Smith, Unitus CEO

Patricia Smith is the CEO of Unitus Community Credit Union, where management is waging a decertification campaign against CWA Local 7901. She's checking her list of union-busting tactics: Lying about the Union only wanting your dues? Check! Pay for performance without guarantees? Check! Touting her "open door" policy while refusing to meet with the Union? Check! Holding mandatory anti-Union meetings and one-on-one meetings? Check! Bombarding employees with anti-Union messages everyday? Check! Getting 62% salary increases over the same period when the employees gained 3%? Check! Vote for Pat for Grinch? Check!


MESD Board

The MESD (Multnomah Education Service District's) Board of Directors has been AWOL for the last two contract negotiations while their AFSCME 1995 employees suffered through endless stalling tactics and intransigence that forced bargaining to last far beyond contract expiration dates. Not only did this board hire and then approve of the union busting tactics employed by infamous perennial Grinch candidate Bruce Zagar, but their sole representative on the management negotiating team expressed the opinion that their workforce could look for jobs elsewhere if they didn't like the miserly deal they were being offered. Let them eat cake, is the message this sends to dedicated loyal workers, many of whom must work second and third jobs as their ESD paychecks get guillotined.


Rep. Earl "Free Trade" Blumenauer

Blumenauer has been hard at work alienating his constituents with his Grinch-like work on a number of issues. Most people in his district, and even in his own neighborhood, want the Bush trade agenda scrapped—instead we got Earl's "new direction on trade", with some nice sounding language on worker's rights, and the suggestion that labor supported the agreement. Unfortunately, the nice sounding language isn't very strong, and Earl's suggestion that labor backs the deal is hogwash. Another issue that is pretty popular in Earl's district is impeachment, however he refused to address the question at a standing room only town hall, and recently voted against it. While he is good on some issues, his positions on the fundamental issues of global economics and constitutional democracy make him a worthy candidate for Grinch of the Year!


John Wilson, Beef Northwest

John Wilson is an owner of Beef Northwest feedlots. He is also a major partner in Wilson Beef Company which raises cattle for, and is a member of Country Natural Beef. 100% of Country Natural Beef goes through the Beef NW feedlot in Boardman, OR. Beef NW also has feedlots in Nyssa, OR and Quincy, WA. There are many safety and other issues in the feedlots. John Wilson refuses to talk to the UFW who has a majority of workers who desire them to represent them. Beef NW does not tell the truth to its workers, and has engaged a local priest to help fight the union. Bottom line - Grinch should be John Wilson's middle name as that is exactly what he really is.


Chris Patterson, CEO Freightliner LLC, "NAFTA Grinch"

Who stole our jobs? Chris Patterson, CEO of Freightliner LLC (officially Daimler Trucks North America, as of 2008), announced in person to an assembly of Freightliner Truck Plant workers that Freightliner trucks would no longer be made in Portland. On March 30, 800 union workers were laid off, and the last Freightliner truck rolled down the assembly line. The trucks are now built in a plant in Mexico, near Mexico City and a second plant near Monterey is under construction. The remaining 900 union workers are assembling Western Star brand trucks but are only working 3 weeks out of each month for a lack of orders. The Mexico City plant is running at capacity. And now headquarters jobs are being moved from Portland too! Here's to Chris Patterson, the NAFTA Grinch of the Year, for Stealing our jobs!


Department of Homeland Security

Last Summer, agents from ICE—a division of Homeland Security—descended upon workers at Del Monte Foods in a work place raid, arresting over a hundred workers and separating families in just a few hours. More recently, they tried to attach a letter to Social Security "no match letters" that are sent out to fix flaws in the the Social Security data base. Even though there are over 17 million known errors in the database, this letter would require an employer to fire a worker within 90 days or face a severe penalty if the number is not "fixed". So far this letter has been defeated in the courts but they are threatening to come back with a new proposal in March. Homeland security is trying to find ways to intimidate and criminalize workers while at the same time providing employers with the tools to make sure that workers don't speak out and exercise their right to organize!

homepage: homepage: http://www.jwjpdx.org


Blumenauer's merrits 20.Dec.2007 22:46

No dem

"While he is good on some issues"
I hear that comment a lot. When I probe what are those illusive issues I have yet to receive a straight answer. He rides a bike: BIG DEAL!
Twice now he has signed the Declaration of Peace, in which he promised to stop signing for more funding for war. Both times he broke that promise! It's shocking to me that this does not seem to bother most democrats, including folks from PDX peace, who made a big deal about the last signature, worshipped him in front of a crowd. Wanna bet they will do the same thing again when next year's Dec of P comes upo for signing. Are those folks masochists? They are democrats, which accross the board means: low on guts and principles.