September 9, 2012

Public Employee Unions — why thuggery in Costa Mesa, CA, matters to you [Darleen Click]

Because, really, do you believe this is anything new?

California city officials typically spare police officers even modest reductions in the pay and pension packages that are a main source of local budget problems, even when the other alternatives are cuts in public services or even municipal bankruptcy.

The common explanation is politicians are afraid of the cop unions’ political muscle come election time. That is true, but disturbing behavior by operatives associated with the Costa Mesa police union paints a much darker picture of the fear such unions instill in local officials. The incident has statewide and even national implications.

Costa Mesa Councilman Jim Righeimer had finished speaking at a community meeting last Wednesday, and then headed to a pub owned by fellow councilman Gary Monahan. Righeimer drank two sodas and drove home. After arriving home, a Costa Mesa cop showed up at his door and asked him to step outside and take a sobriety test, which he passed. […]

A private eye with connections to the law firm Lackie, Dammeier & McGill of Upland, Calif., which represents the Costa Mesa Police Officers Association and many others across the state, called 911 and reported Righeimer as a possible DUI, representing himself as a concerned citizen. The caller said Righeimer stumbled out of the bar even though surveillance cameras show no such thing. “He’s just swerving all over the road,” the caller stated. […]

“What you have here is police associations and their law firms hiring private detectives to dig up dirt on elected officials that they can then use to extort them, embarrass them or worse in order to get the elected official to vote against the best interests of the city to protect themselves,” Righeimer told me. “That’s the definition of extortion.”

This is why we see such heated, unhinged rhetoric from public employee union leaders against people like WI Gov. Scott Walker or right-to-work states — their power to control the people who decide their paychecks & benefits, even to the ruin of the taxpayers, is not to be interfered with.

The OC Register, which has been covering this story, even reported on the jaw-dropping playbook posted on the lawfirm’s own website.

Rarely does the public get a look behind the curtain during police pay negotiations. But a website for Upland law firm Lackie, Dammeier & McGill features their play book for twisting arms during impasse negotiations.

Lackie, Dammeier & McGill represent more than 120 police unions in California and 19 in Orange County, including Placentia. Its primer for police negotiations is part swagger, part braggadocio and all insult in its portrayal of the public and the budget-conscious officials elected to represent them.

“The association should be like a quiet giant in the position of ‘do as I ask and don’t (expletive) me off,”‘ says the playbook.

(It should be noted the law firm is made up of former police officers.)

The lawyers advise union leaders to cozy up to decision-makers long before negotiations begin. Once impasse is reached, “now is the time when the political endorsements, favors and friendships come into play.”

Once at impasse, storm the city council, chastising members for their lack of concern for public safety.

Next, picket and make appearances at public functions, making sure everyone knows the association is upset.

If crime is up, use that to send the message that the city council could care less about public safety.

Send members to job fairs, having them apply at a large local agency. This will cause an influx of personnel file checks by background investigators. (Apparently, city hall will panic at the large number of police seeking outside work.)

Stage a work slowdown. “Do thorough investigations, such as canvassing an entire neighborhood when doing 459 (burglary) reports.” Ask for a back-up unit on most calls. And “of course exercising officer discretion in not issuing citations and making arrests is also encouraged.”

Make sure the public knows of “blunders” or wasteful spending by the city manager, mayor or city council members.

Create mailers with the emphasis on public safety and encourage residents to telephone council members, preferably at home.

If any council members are up for re-election, campaign against them, again for their lack of concern for public safety.

And, here’s a page right from Alinsky’s own playbook:

Focus on one public official and “keep the pressure up until that person assures you his loyalty and then move on to the next victim.”

It can be noted, with snickers and smirks, that the lawfirm has removed the playbook from its website.

California is a perfect example of Leftwing dogma in practice. If this is happening in bucolic, suburban Costa Mesa (and being begrudingly underplayed by the Los Angeles Times) … what is happening in your community?

Posted by Darleen @ 10:46am

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Comments (20)

  1. Pingback: Public Employee Union Thuggery in Costa Mesa | Truth About Unions

  2. what is happening in your community?

    That would be Denver. The thing that I noticed is the public schools are being used to produce Democrat candidates for public office. Fairly all of them. Then state elections are said to be non partisan which is a very strange concept to grasp, most confusing and then vexing for citizens researching specifically looking for Republican candidates for they appear to not exist. Just all people proud to point to their administrative jobs in the school system. And they do get together and socialize and laugh and laugh at the situation they’ve created because they all know nonpartisan election means everyone is Democrat.

  3. Good news, school chirren in Maryland: no more homework!

  4. If crime is up, use that to send the message that the city council could care less about public safety.

    Gahh! Bad enough that the unions are given to thuggery and intimidation — nothing new there, and if you’re not particularly bright, well you use what you’ve got. But now even the freakin’ lawyers – who work with language all day long – are semi-literate morons, as well.

  5. Actually I like the idea of encouraging the kids to read as homework.

  6. I don’t remember having homework until I was in junior high or high school.

    Don’t most parents read with their kids or am I stuck in the 60s again?

  7. non-lethal swatting. anyone can play that game with a burner phone.

  8. the worksheet homework stuff that comes home now is busy work

    reading, spelling words, memorizing multiplication tables and the occasion project like building a volcano for science or a diorama (in California there’s the tradition Mission to be made in 5th grade) should be enough grade school homework.

  9. What do you guys think happened to Jeff? Same thing.

    Not that this kind of crap is anything new; if anything, we’re hearing more about it now than you did in many jurisdictions in the 80s.

    Take Montgomery AL when I was growing up. Mayor didn’t like that “rock and roll devil music”, so he announced a standard policy of frisking the incoming audience for “contraband”. We didn’t have concerts until he left office.

  10. Now, of course, it’s pretty much impossible to get into a concert, a happening nightclub, a City Hall, or even a high school (*) without passing through some sort of security checkpoint, be it a metal detector, a pat-down, or what have you.

    But don’t you feel so much safer? It’s such a small price to pay for peace of mind, after a while you won’t even notice it!

  11. (*) in the Philly/NJ area, at least.

  12. In fact, I could argue that the Govt. is running a sort of drug-pusher business model with education: “First 12 years are free, kid, but if you want the really good stuff after that, it’s gonna cost you!”

    Thankfully, most people have a natural immunity to the product, but some poor souls (see the lovely-and-mannish Ms. Fluke, recent graduate of 25th Grade) develop quite the taste for the goods, often to their personal ruin.

    “Why do you think they call it dope?”

  13. oops. That last one should have been in one of the other threads.

  14. leigh…

    I don’t remember having homework until I was in junior high or high school.

    We’ve lived in about the same time frame, and I had homework starting 5th, 6th grade, perhaps before, if I’d screwed up (that never happened! ). Can’t imagine how progressives think that allowing our modern progeny to slide into adulthood without working for knowledge is making for good citizens. Why, many would just sit around playing video games and watching the boob tube, or going to schools until they were 31 whilst demanding free bc, or otherwise Occupying their lives with sub-par goals, and develop no successful life-strategies!

    What would become of this Republic if that ever happened ?

  15. This is okay. It’s standard procedure. These guys have a dangerous job. Sometimes you just have to make a choice: do you want to be hassled, or would you rather they go on strike and you be dead, all because you wouldn’t pay them to keep you safe?

  16. I’m sorry. Did that come across as pointed?

  17. serr8d, I remember doing reports on various things in the six grade. Usually a famous person or a research paper on a topic that was assigned to the whole class.

    My kids went to parochial school and they had spelling words and handwriting assignments in the primary grades. Math and science homework in high school (public).

  18. I’m sorry. Did that come across as pointed?

    When I was in Philly, the part about organized crime that we liked the most was the fact that it was organized, and not in the bullshit ‘community organizer’ sense of the word. You paid your dues, and in return your streets were clear of trash and transients, and your shop was protected.

    Yes, it was criminal, and it was coercive, but it was effective, which is more than Mayor Goode could ever say about his army of goons.

    The thing that cops and firefighters and school teachers all seem to forget is that we are capable of doing their jobs just fine on our own. We pay ‘professionals’ to do these things because we feel we get better value for money that way. When they no longer offer value for money, they shouldn’t be surprised if we decide we’ll go back to doing it ourselves. It’s just too bad that so many of our neighbors have forgotten this basic truth.

  19. Were you there for the gangland shootings? I still remember the pictures in the Inquirer of dead Mafiosos lying in the street next to their Cadillacs.

    No Fredo bawling on the curbside, though.