With today’s staged protests outside fast-food restaurants, with under-skilled workers demanding their pay be doubled, wouldn’t it be nice if the media actually reported what was going on? Don’t hold your breath, though. What we would do if we ran a franchise would be to set up a hiring table right outside the door. In this dreary economy there would be no shortage of applicants. Then when the protesters showed up for their next shift we’d hand them a pink slip.
These are busy — and profitable — times for rent-a-mobs. Just days after Black Friday protests against Walmart stores, many of the same agitators will be out again on Thursday protesting at fast-food restaurants in New York City and across the country.
We’re all supposed to pretend these are “organic” worker “uprisings” against exploitative employers; in fact, they’re all bankrolled by Big Labor and its allies.
At the forefront of this perpetual protest machine is New York’s Restaurant Opportunities Center, the union-founded “worker center” infamous for its protest shakedowns of nonunion restaurants.
ROC and the union-backed OUR Walmart held a joint “political education session” in Miami the week before Thanksgiving, and ROC’s co-director protested on Black Friday with OUR Walmart last year, but the coming fast-food protests fit better with ROC’s restaurant focus.
In fact, ROC pioneered this model: A union front group organizes as a nonprofit “worker center,” which lets it skirt federal labor laws that set reasonable limits on union protests. A novel idea when it launched in New York in 2002, ROC is now one of hundreds of worker centers nationwide, including SEIU-backed groups with names like Fast Food Forward and Fight for 15. ROC itself has expanded to over 30 cities, with reported plans for a new, SEIU-funded chapter in Seattle.
The demonstrations help unions create the illusion of public support for their agenda — to suggest that lots of people are angry enough to protest. In fact, the protesters often get paid.
The National Labor Relations Board has ruled that unions can give out $50 gift cards as enticement to those who join anti-Walmart protests on Black Friday. In Seattle, the SEIU reportedly paid workers $75 to participate in previous fast-food protests, enough for weeks of lunches off the Value Menu.
For a hilarious takedown of these slobs, check out Sooper Mexican’s look at the Black Friday protests. Here’s a taste, but go check out the rest:
— SoVeryMexy (@SooperMexican) December 3, 2013