Over the weekend, labor reporter Mike Elk with In These Times magazine revealed that the Koch brothers sent political fliers to all of their 45,000 employees at Georgia Pacific – hinting that their jobs might be on the line if they don’t vote for Mitt Romney. The letter warns that if employees elect Barack Obama, then “many of our more than 50,000 U.S. employees and contractors may suffer the consequences.” The letter goes on to list political candidates that the Kochs support – all of which were Republicans. Elk also exposes social media rules at Georgia Pacific that work to limit the political speech of their workers as well as intimidation used against workers who are too politically active.
The Kochs are the latest in a long line of CEOs that have made veiled threats against their employees to vote for Mitt Romney. Last week – Westgate Resorts billionaire CEO David Siegel warned his employees that should Barack Obama raise his taxes, then he would be forced to downsize his company. Also – ASG Software Solutions CEO Arthur Allen sent an email to his employees warning there will be “fallout” if Barack Obama wins the presidency again. And then there’s Murray Energy – the largest private coal company in the nation – which, according to The New Republic, has coerced its employees to donate money to Republican politicians.
Unbelievably – coercing employees like this to support certain political candidates is not illegal. And it’s just the latest example of how the super-rich have a lot more free speech rights now in America than working people do. And since many Americans are desperate for a job – they have to go along with what their bosses say just to be able to keep food on the table - knowing full well that a vote for Mitt Romney is against their own best interests.
This is how the "corporatocracy" operates today.
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