This article first appeared at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, July 31, 2014:
The ruling by the general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that McDonald’s is actually a huge employer of more than 175,000 workers in the United States, rather than a franchisor with thousands of independent franchisees, will, if it is upheld, allow the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) to recruit those workers much more easily.
The ruling was supposedly about low wages and local disputes with a few of those franchisees, but it had precious little to do with that carefully crafted public perception.
Richard Griffin, the NLRB’s general counsel, said he investigated more than 180 claims by local McDonald’s’ workers that they were being penalized for protesting low wages in a series of one-day strikes earlier this year. He found 43 of them to be “valid” and, in the process, ruled that McDonald’s itself would be held jointly liable for any penalties along with the individual franchisees.
The New York Times, to its credit, saw through the scam, calling it