The Wall Street Journal editorializes on the complaint filed by the National Labor Relations Board against Boeing, in which the NLRB demands that the company open a second production line in the Puget Sound to compensate for its building of a 787 Dreamliner plant in South Carolina. From “The Death of Right to Work — After 17 months and $2 billion, the NLRB sandbags Boeing” (subscription):
We knew that Big Labor had political pull at the Obama-era National Labor Relations Board, but yesterday’s complaint against Boeing is one for the (dark) ages. By challenging Boeing’s right to build aircraft in South Carolina, labor’s bureaucratic allies in Washington are threatening the ability of states to compete for new jobs and investment—and risking the economic recovery to boot….
Beyond labor politics, the NLRB’s ruling would set a terrible precedent for the flow of jobs and investment within the U.S. It would essentially give labor a veto over management decisions about where to build future plants. And it would undercut the right-to-work statutes in 22 American states—which is no doubt the main union goal here.
With a Republican House, Mr. Obama’s union agenda is dead in Congress. But it looks like his appointees are determined to impose it by regulatory fiat—no matter the damage to investment and job creation.
Yes, union agendas and regulatory fiats that the White House has consistently endorsed, contrary to the NLRB’s proper statutory role as an independent agency that is supposed to perform a quasi-judicial function — not enable organized labor’s dreams.
But the White House had given the NLRB its marching orders. President Obama told the AFL-CIO Executive Council in August 2010: “My administration has consistently implemented not just legislative strategies but also where we have the power through executive orders to make sure that those basic values are reflected.” And, “We’re going to make sure that the National Labor Relations Board is restored to have some balance, so that if workers want to form a union, they can at least get a fair vote in a reasonable amount of time.” (continue reading…)