The September issues of Capital Research Center’s four monthly publications have been posted on the CRC website.
1) Foundation Watch
The War on Corporate Campaign Spending
By Michael Marinaccio
Last year’s Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC drove the activist Left to madness. The decision affirmed a principle that corporations, like individuals, have free speech rights, which liberal doomsayers predict will lead to nothing less than the downfall of American democracy. To combat the ruling, the Obama White House has drafted an executive order that, if issued, will compel both for-profit and non-profit corporations (including labor unions) to disclose their political contributions whenever they apply for federal grants and contracts.
2) Organization Trends
Is ACORN Bullet-Proof? Radical Community Organizers Re-Organize
By Matthew Vadum
Supporters of ACORN make long faces, lamenting the collapse of their sainted organization. Don’t believe them. It’s all for show. In 2009 Congress banned further federal funding for ACORN and last November the group declared bankruptcy. But ACORN operatives are rebuilding their organizing and fundraising apparatus, and ACORN is spawning new progeny. The groups have new names, but the faces behind them are familiar. They are roaming through government agencies in search of more federal grants. In this issue Matthew Vadum explores ACORN’s latest reinvention since the May publication of his book Subversion Inc.
3) Labor Watch
NLRB’s “Quickie Election” Scheme
By Hannah Bowen
On June 21 the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) proposed making changes to how it will conduct union elections. It wants to speed up workplace elections, “eliminating unnecessary litigation” and “streamlining the election procedures.” According to NRLB Chairman Wilma Liebman: “Resolving representation questions quickly, fairly, and accurately has been an overriding goal of American labor law for more than 75 years.” AFL-CIO President Rich Trumka says the changes are “a modest step to remove roadblocks.” But how “modest” is the proposal that the NLRB put forward by a 3-1 vote? Brian Hayes, the NLRB’s lone Republican member, opposes what he calls the “quickie election” option. Hayes says the Board is acting at Big Labor’s behest “and at the great expense of undermining public trust in the fairness of Board elections.” The Board has scheduled a 75 day public comment period on the proposal.
4) Green Watch
“Fracking”: The Latest Battlefront in the Green War Against Jobs
By Robert Kirchoff
You will be hearing lots more about hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” the name for an innovative technology that resource companies use to extract natural gas contained within layers of shale rock deep below the surface of the earth. Companies capture vast quantities of otherwise inaccessible natural gas by drilling into layers of rock and then pumping in a mixture of water, chemicals and sand at a rate that generates hydraulic pressure. This creates fractures in the rock sufficient to tap into the natural gas reservoirs contained within them. Green groups want to make Americans hate fracking, and they are spreading scare stories to pressure lawmakers to ban the technology. More natural gas production can only undercut the greens’ dream of forcing the federal government to restrict fossil fuel production so that Americans will subsist on “renewable” alternative fuel sources.