Friday, March 30, 2012

Kaiser Proposes Benefit Cuts to Partnership Unions

Today, the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions finished its second round of bargaining with Kaiser Permanente, which took place in Los Angeles from March 27-29. What happened?  

According to an email that SEIU-UHW sent to its members, Kaiser proposed the same cuts to workers’ health benefits that they earlier proposed to NUHW, the Stationary Engineers, the Pharmacists and other non-partnership unions.

But wait a sec! What about Dave Regan’s genius strategy of “getting out in front of Kaiser’s cuts” by proposing SEIU’s own set of preemptive benefit reductions (a.k.a, SEIU’s enhanced wellness program)? Well, here’s an excerpt from SEIU-UHW’s email (full email is below):
We just finished our second session of national bargaining for a new contract with Kaiser…

In bargaining, we presented our idea to improve Kaiser: we take collective responsibility for improving our health, which is both good for us and keeps healthcare costs in check. In return, we called on Kaiser to deliver on our bargaining priorities…

So what was Kaiser’s response? Flex healthcare plans — just like the takeaway packages that they have been making to Kaiser managers, pharmacists, and other workers—which force workers to pay more for healthcare.
And how bad are Kaiser’s proposed cuts? Basically, part-time workers would be forced to pay about $700 a month to get health insurance for their families. (Currently, these workers pay $0, which is the longtime standard in California’s healthcare industry.) For more details on the proposed cuts, check out this post with leaflets recently circulated by AFSCME’s United Nurses Association of California.

Of course, these are precisely the cuts that NUHW, the CNA and the Stationary Engineers have been fighting by conducting massive strikes, which SEIU has tried to undermine.

So what’s going on? According to insiders, SEIU’s Dave Regan has already made a secret deal with Kaiser’s executives to accept the company’s benefit cuts. That’s why SEIU tried to undermine NUHW’s earlier strikes. And that’s why SEIU has failed to prepare any sort of campaign to fight Kaiser.

In fact, during this famous recording, a worker recently asked SEIU-UHW’s Joe Simoes: “What’s SEIU's plan for fighting Kaiser’s cuts?” Simoes’s response? A wellness walk.

So what’ll happen next? Tasty predicts that SEIU officials will stage a fake campaign of “sticker days” and rallies at Kaiser hospitals that will stretch into late April. At the end of this half-hearted campaign, Dave Regan and John August will turn to Kaiser workers, shrug their shoulders and say, “See? We tried. But we just couldn’t change Kaiser’s mind.” And SEIU, in its predictably dishonest way, will tell workers that the cuts are actually “improvements,” like they did at Catholic Healthcare West.

It’s clear that Kaiser sees its current negotiations with the Coalition as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to roll back workers’ benefits to levels not seen in decades. Kaiser’s executives are abundantly aware that their counterparts on the other side of the bargaining table -- Dave Regan and John August -- are weak, incompetent and corrupt. That’s why Kaiser plans to extract billions of dollars of concessions from its workforce even though Kaiser pocketed $6.1 billion in profits during the past three years. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Source: Steve Matthews Dumped due to Affair with SEIU Staffer

SEIU's Steve Matthews and Dave Regan
A source tells Tasty that Steve Matthews has been removed from his job as the Executive Director of SEIU Local 721 in Los Angeles due to his extra-curricular activities with one of the union's staffers, who reportedly accompanied Matthews on romantic weekend get-aways.

Last December, Tasty reported about the extramarital scandal (which, by the way, Tasty had predicted several months earlier).

In January, Matthews was suspended from his job despite reportedly consulting with SEIU-UHW's Dave Regan about how to sweep the entire affair under the rug.

Officials at SEIU Local 721, according to an internal memo, requested assistance from out-of-town SEIU officials -- including SEIU's Leslie Frane and Bill Pritchett -- to head up an investigation into Matthews and to try to stabilize the local union. Ominously, the memo instructed staffers not to discuss the affair with the media.

Matthews was finally cut loose in mid-March, says Tasty's source. 

The reported firing of Matthews raises important questions about his chief adviser, Dave Regan. A top official inside SEIU, Regan has reportedly conducted illicit affairs with multiple staffers and union members while he held various leadership positions.

Most infamously, Regan reportedly had an extramarital affair with a member of SEIU 1199 Ohio's Executive Board when Regan was the local union's president. Later, Regan reportedly pressured the rank-and-file worker to abort the couple's baby, after which Regan summarily axed the woman from her seat on the union's Executive Board.

By all accounts, Regan's ethical offenses are far more serious than Matthews's. So... if Matthews is going 'bye-bye' for his secret affair, then shouldn't SEIU officials at least investigate the reports of Regan's multiple trysts, which are widely known among SEIU officials? Whadda ya say, Mary Kay Henry?

Whatsa matter...? Cat got your tongue?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

NLRB Finds SEIU’s Dave Regan & Co. Guilty… Again

Last Thursday, the highest decision-making body of the NLRB delivered a guilty verdict against Dave Regan and SEIU for ordering the illegal firing of a rank-and-file SEIU-UHW member from his job at a Southern California hospital.

In a 13-page decision, the NLRB's board members -- who’re appointed by the president of the United States -- ordered SEIU-UHW to “cease and desist from causing or attempting to cause Lakewood Regional Medical Center to discharge or otherwise discriminate against [the worker] or any other employee...” 

They also ordered SEIU-UHW to have the worker returned to his job... and to make him “whole for any loss of earnings and other benefits suffered as a result of the discrimination against him, with interest, from the date of his discharge until the date he is reinstated.”

How much does SEIU-UHW owe him? Almost two years’ of wages, benefits and interest.

Last week’s ruling is the latest step in a case that's lasted for 20 months because of SEIU’s senseless legal appeals. In July of 2011, a judge delivered a guilty verdict against Regan, who promptly spent thousands more of SEIU-UHW's dues dollars to appeal the judge's decision to Washington, DC. Attorney Bruce Harland directed SEIU-UHW's attack against the worker.

Why did SEIU try to fire the worker in the first place? SEIU claimed he owed them a whopping $236 in union dues, even though SEIU refused to provide him any accounting of the money. Meanwhile, the worker told the judge how SEIU failed to provide representation or support to union members at his hospital following SEIU's disastrous trusteeship in 2009.

In 2010, SEIU’s Dave Regan, Cory Cordova and YouTube star Liz Castillo teamed up against the worker.

The news about Regan's despicable attack against one of SEIU's own members is not widely known right now. But not for long! In last week's ruling, the NLRB ordered Regan to send a description of the NLRB's verdict to ALL of SEIU-UHW’s members by email and also to post it on SEIU-UHW’s website.

Here's the NLRB's recent decision:

NLRB's Decision and Order against Illegal Firing of Union Member 3-22-12

Monday, March 26, 2012

Unions in N.Y. Oppose Wellness Program

Check out this story. As SEIU does flashmobs and wellness walks in a lame attempt to rally workers’ support behind Kaiser Permanente’s wellness program, three Teamsters locals in upstate New York are fighting their company's wellness initiative.

According to this article in Bloomberg’s Business Week, PepsiCo recently applied a fee of $50 per month to employees who are “smokers, as well as to workers who have diabetes, hypertension, high blood pressure or asthma, conditions that often lead to being overweight.”

Fortunately, the local unions that represents PepsiCo’s drivers, sales agents and warehouse workers are fighting the fee. A Teamsters official put it this way: “We’re against that type of tax, frankly. It feels wrong to tax workers if they are overweight or happen to have diabetes or smoke…”

The Bloomberg article reports that U.S. companies are increasingly imposing financial penalties on “unhealthy” workers:
U.S. companies adding financial incentives and penalties to control workers’ health-care management rose 50 percent from 2009 to 2011, according to a survey of 355 employers by Towers Watson and the National Business Group on Health. The use of penalties may double this year, with 38 percent of respondents saying they plan to punish people who miss targets linked to cholesterol levels or body-mass index, the study showed.
In a separate article, the New York Times describes how more and more companies are imposing financial penalties on "unhealthy" workers, including WalMart's $2,000-a-year penalty on smokers.

What's going on? Companies are using wellness programs as their latest technique for shifting more health insurance costs onto workers' backs... and for pushing the most "unhealthy" workers onto the rolls of the uninsured or out of the workforce.

SEIU's Dave Regan recently put it this way to workers attending a conference of the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions: “If you're overweight, you pay 10% more for your health care. If you smoke, you pay 20% more. If you do this or that, you pay more. That's what's going on out there.”

And guess what? Companies are not afraid to commit hair-raising acts of hypocrisy to get it done. For example, PepsiCo is penalizing 'unhealthy" workers even though it's a giant purveyor of junk food. The multi-billion-dollar corporation sells a wide range of "health" foods to U.S. workers that include Pepsi, Cap’n Crunch, Mountain Dew, Doritos, Cheetos, Mug Root Beer, Tostitos, Fritos, Cracker Jacks, Ruffles, Lays, 7Up, Grandma’s Cookies… and even “Baken-ets Fried Pork Skins” and “Matador Meat Snacks.”

Got hypocrisy?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Kaiser’s Partnership Unions Launch 21st-Century “Strike”

Coalition's flashmob in Hollywood
On Friday, the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions (a.k.a, “the partnership unions”) used their “delegates conference” in Hollywood to launch a “strike,” according to the AFL-CIO’s website.

Wow! Did they conduct a strike against Kaiser’s efforts to slash workers’ pensions and health insurance, which one partnership union has described in these leaflets? Or perhaps a strike against Kaiser’s $6.1 billion in profits, its executives’ eight pension plans, and CEO George Halvorson’s $9 million salary?

Well… not exactly.

In fact, instead of striking Kaiser, SEIU and the partnership unions conducted a “strike” against “obesity and chronic disease.” That’s right. A “wellness” strike. Oh yeah… and it wasn’t actually a “strike.” It was a “flashmob” by conference participants dancing to a BeyoncĂ© tune on a Hollywood street.

Here’s how the AFL-CIO’s website described it:
Kaiser Permanente health care workers are launching a “strike” at public health problems, including obesity and chronic disease. Today, more than 500 will kick off the campaign by taking over a major Hollywood tourist mecca, Hollywood and Highland

If you’re in Hollywood, join the fun at 10:30 a.m., as health care workers dance to Beyonce’s public health video and hand out health education leaflets to passers-by.
Here’s a video of the flashmob (a.k.a. "strike"), which included workers holding up signs that say “Let’s Get Healthy!” And here’s a video of conference delegates practicing the flashmob inside the fancy Renaissance Hollywood Hotel and Spa.

So... it looks like we’ve now seen the first ever “strike” by a 21st-century union... thanks to John August and SEIU-UHW’s Dave Regan.

Tasty is confident it will rank among the worst episodes of company unionism in America’s modern labor history. SEIU has now conducted both a "wellness walk" and a "wellness strike" in an effort to rally workers' support behind the Boss’s wellness program. Meanwhile, when tens of thousands of workers actually conducted real strikes to oppose Kaiser's benefits cuts, SEIU officials worked side-by-side with Kaiser managers to try to threaten and bully SEIU's own members into not joining the strikes.

What's next for Regan and August? It's hard to imagine they could dream up anything more absurd and pathetic than a "wellness strike." But hey... with 21st-century company unions, you just never know.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

SEIU/Coalition's Hollywood Junket: Dancing While Kaiser Contract Burns

Remember the leaflets from AFSCME/UNAC that describe Kaiser Permanente’s plans to slash workers’ benefits during contract negotiations? Well, some workers hoped the leaflets might force SEIU and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions to utter at least a few words of half-hearted criticism against Kaiser.


In fact, Tasty has learned that Dave Regan and John August are spending millions of dollars of workers’ dues money on a so-called “Delegates Conference” that begins March 23rd. The giant junket is designed to co-opt the Coalition delegates who'll vote on a new national contract when negotiations are completed in May.

According to this website, Regan and August are sending more than 600 union delegates and staffers to a three-day, all-expenses-paid extravaganza at “the ultra-stylish Renaissance Hollywood Hotel and Spa… the premier luxury property in the movie-making capital of the world.”

Here’s a list of the attendees, including Regan, Stan Lyles and even Tiffany “I’m gonna kill you” Ford. Altogether, 170 staff and members from SEIU-UHW will be poolside at the Hollywood Renaissance.

The hotel features a restaurant, bar, champagne brunch, live music, rooftop swimming pool and health spa that offers “celebrity-inspired pampering” including “Enzymatic Body Peels,” “Micro Current Eye Lift,” “Sunless Tanning” and “Couples Massages.”

For those who wanna look nice for SEIU’s next Wellness Walk, there’s even a special “Firming Wrap” with “Shea Butter, Rice Bran Oil and extracts of Juniper Berry, Walnut and Bitter Orange.”

What about the program/content for this “Delegates Conference?” After all, it’s taking place right in the middle of Kaiser negotiations. Will SEIU-UHW and the Coalition actually talk about Kaiser’s proposed benefits cuts?


According to the website, the conference – entitled “You Gotta Move” – focuses on (you guessed it) “Wellness Programs!”
The aim of this conference is to inform, inspire and support leadership development, particularly in improving our health and the health of our communities… We will explore our options in reducing our health risks and those of our community during plenary sessions, workshops and in our Union Steering Committee track.
Delegates can choose from an array of riveting workshops like “Leading in Partnership,” “Tracking Success” (presented by two Kaiser officials), “Effective Sponsorship,” “Small Is Big” (how to incorporate physical exercise into your life -- led by a physical fitness trainer), “Laughaceuticals” (“ideas for regularly incorporating laughter into your day”), “Turn on the Jazz,” “Mentoring Our Future,” “Tell Me a Story” and “Value Stream Mapping.”  

And, for delegates who like to party, Regan and August have even planned a “Hollywood Party” with the “Jam Patrol Dancers.” Hmm... what's that saying about 'Dancing while Rome burns?'

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Too Close to Call at Seton Medical Center

Here's the update from today's NLRB election at Seton Medical Center in Northern California:

With 24 "challenged" ballots that haven't been counted, the current total is: 280 (SEIU) to 271 (NUHW) to 19 (No Union).

The next step is for the NLRB to investigate and rule on the 24 challenged ballots. After that's done, it's possible the vote totals will trigger a run-off election. Under the NLRB's rules, if the top vote-getter doesn't win more than 50% of the counted ballots, then the top two vote-getters participate in a run-off election. Stay tuned!

PS.  Some readers are asking, "What are challenged ballots?" Basically, these are ballots that were submitted by people who may not be eligible to participate in the election or voted at the wrong polling site. For example, if a worker is no longer employed at the hospital or transferred to a new "job classification" that's not included in the bargaining unit, then their ballots may not be valid. The NLRB has to investigate each person's situation to determine whether their sealed ballot should be opened and added to the vote tally.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

SEIU’s “Flirt-to-Convert,” Round Three

Sascha Eisner with unnamed woman
Remember SEIU’s famous effort to recruit workers’ votes by sending female organizers in mini-dresses to parade through hospitals? Well, SEIU has apparently launched another flirt-to-convert campaign at Northern California’s Seton Medical Center, where workers will be voting tomorrow in an NLRB decertification election.  

This time, however, Tasty hears it’s SEIU’s Sascha Eisner who’s strutting the floors of the hospital, flirting with female workers, and inviting them to join him for “drinks and dinner” – courtesy of SEIU!

In January, Seton’s workers launched a rebellion against SEIU after Purple Palace officials negotiated cuts to their benefits, let the company lay off dozens of workers, and then simply failed to return workers’ phone calls for months and months.

As soon as workers filed their decert petition, SEIU-UHW flooded the hospital with as many as 18 organizers per day, while many more purple-clad staffers banged on workers’ doors at home.

So who’s Mr. Flirt-to-Convert? Eisner was formerly the “Organizing Director” of SEIU’s Service Workers United (SWU), where he helped cut a secret deal with two multi-national conglomerates, Sodexo and Compass Group. The deal, which bears Eisner’s name, prohibits SEIU’s members from conducting “strikes, demonstrations, leafleting, informational campaigns of employer or clients anywhere in the world.” (emphasis added)  It also gives the bosses the exclusive power to select which workers are permitted to unionize.

The agreement was supposed to have been cloaked in permanent secrecy by one provision, which SEIU apparently borrowed from a James Bond movie. Here's what it says:
"The agreements are confidential and it is critical to the success of SWU that we honor the confidentiality and not publicly disclose the existence of these agreements."
Hmm... SEIU-styled democracy at its best!

From what Tasty can tell, SWU has completely collapsed in recent years. And that forced Sascha to move back to California, where he's now attempting a different sort of back-room maneuver with female workers. 

And... it looks like Sascha's flirtatious offensives haven't been too successful (too much of that Old Spice aftershave?). His most recent attempt at flirt-to-convert produced only a single vote for SEIU in the election!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Coalition Steps Up Pressure on Kaiser with ‘Team Salad Days’

It turns out that Tasty spoke too soon when he criticized SEIU's Dave Regan and John August for refusing to develop a plan for fighting Kaiser Permanente’s cuts at the bargaining table.  

Late last week, the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions unveiled two 21st-century tactics that are designed to strike fear into the hearts of Kaiser’s executives: “team salad days” and “walking meetings.” (Tasty is not kidding).

Here’s an excerpt from the Coalition's leaflet (BTW, "UBT" refers to "unit-based team." The full leaflet is below):

Wow!!!  That's like... 'transformational unionism!' What's next?  Group Colon Cleanses. Dietary Fiber Fridays. StairMaster Steward Council Meetings.  The possibilities are endless with 21st century unionism!

 Leaflet about Team Salad Days from the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions during contract negotiations M...

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Partnership Union Describes Kaiser's Plan for Cuts to Benefits

Here's a revealing development that emerged after the partnership unions' first bargaining session with Kaiser Permanente on March 6-8.

SEIU-UHW and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions have not disclosed any details about the benefit cuts that Kaiser wants from their members. However, one of the partnership unions -- the United Nurses Association of California (UNAC) -- has released a detailed description of the cuts they expect Kaiser to put on the bargaining table.

Check out eight pages of leaflets that UNAC distributed to its members last week. UNAC, which is affiliated with AFSCME, represents 14,000 RNs in many of Kaiser's Southern California hospitals. (NUHW represents the RNs at Kaiser's largest SoCal hospital, and the California Nurses Association represents Kaiser RNs in Northern California.)

What's UNAC telling its members?  "We expect Kaiser to seek a new 'Flex' benefits system in our bargaining sessions." Under this  system, Kaiser would no longer cover the monthly health insurance premiums for part-time workers and their families. For example, employees who work 20 to 31 hours per week would have to pay 20-40% of their monthly premiums.

The "Flex" benefits system would also force workers to pay higher co-pays, new co-pays and higher out-of-pocket maximums. (Details on particular co-pays are described in the leaflets.)

UNAC also expects Kaiser to propose sharp cuts to workers' retiree health insurance. UNAC's leaflets include quotes from its rank-and-file leaders about Kaiser's expected proposals.

Dave Regan and John August are sitting in the bargaining sessions as UNAC's officials. So why are Regan and August keeping their members in the dark about Kaiser's plan for benefit cuts? Is this what you call "21st century unionism?"

Here are UNAC's leaflets (you can scroll through the eight pages by using the scroll bar on the right or the arrows in the bottom right-hand corner):

UNAC Leaflets on Coalition Bargaining with Kaiser Permanente 3-15-12

Thursday, March 15, 2012

SEIU-UHW Steward: Healthy California or "Goodbye Contract"

Last week in Los Angeles, SEIU and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions held their first three days of bargaining with Kaiser’s executives. 

What happened? Not much, say Tasty’s sources.

Apparently, the labor-management partners spent three full days getting trained on how to conduct “interest-based bargaining” and being chummy with each other at a plush hotel in Los Angeles.

According to readers, when SEIU-UHW’s bargaining committee returned to their jobs after the three-day session, they came back with long faces and grim news that “Kaiser is coming after our pension and benefits.”

So how's SEIU responding? Are Dave Regan, John August and Joe Simoes ringing alarm bells? Is SEIU developing some kind of fight-back plan... err, or at least a strategy that’s slightly more effective than SEIU’s famous Wellness Walk strategy, which Joe Simoes so eloquently described in this conference call?

Well, it sure doesn’t look like it. Check out this email, dated March 23rd, which was sent by an SEIU-UHW Shop Steward to her co-workers. See especially the 6th sentence that Tasty bolded. (BTW, Tasty hid the names of the recipients).

Tamela Tate/CA/KAIPERM
03/13/2012 02:23 PM
                               /CA/KAIPERM@KAIPERM,            /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,             /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,            /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,            /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,                /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,                         /CA/KAIPERM@KAIPERM,                        /CA/KAIPERM@KAIPERM,                /CA/KAIPERM@KAIPERM,           /CA/KAIPERM@KAIPERM,              /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,              /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm,              /CA/KAIPERM@Kaiperm

union work

Afternoon Everyone,

I spoke to some of you regarding barging updated information.  I have a flier that I will be passing around about the updates.  Also I need two or more people to help me with promoting a Healthy California. A healthy California means SEIU-UHW members is willing to help fix health care by communicating on how to fight chronic diseases, expand access to care, and be a model of good health. I’m going to be real with you guys, this is going to take a lot of time and effort to make this happen.  If we don’t show Kaiser that we are willing to help change the health care system, we might as well say good bye to our great contract.  If you are willing to help keep your contract and all the good things that are listed in the contract, and would like more, come join me to the first step of a Healthy California.  Are you good at organizing, politics, or knowing how to communicate in the community?  If so, you will be a great leader for this campaign. If you don’t have strength in any of these fields, we will help you gain the strength. We have to help fix health care costs crisis for the long haul.  It’s a give and take situation.  Also, people in the community will have resources of living a healthy life.  I have the form if you would like to help me with a Healthy California.  Remember I need at least two people.  I would love to have more.  If transportation is an issue, please let me know.  We have resources on getting you to the meetings.  One of the meetings is this weekend in Oakland, Sacramento, or Fresno. Don’t let the out of town fear you.  Like I said we have ways of getting you to one of the functions.  If you have any questions please call me.  Please let me know if you are going to partner with me for a Healthy California by Thursday, March 13, 2012.  If you are not able to come this weekend and still want to help please let me know by 03/13/12.  Thanks everyone.  I hope you enjoy the rest of your work day.  
Whoa! A friendly note to SEIU-UHW's shop stewards: No offense intended, but the dishonest officials at SEIU and Kaiser are playing you like a violin. Remember: during the past three years, Kaiser has reported $6.1 billion in profits! In fact, Kaiser made these billions of profits at the same time that it was paying for all of the health and pension benefits that Kaiser and SEIU now want to eliminate.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

SEIU: Who's Your Daddy?

SEIU's Dave Kieffer
Tasty hears that SEIU is getting heavy criticism in California for cutting a backroom deal that undermines the efforts of unions and progressive organizations to restore funding for education and social services. And that’s not all. SEIU’s secret deal has even undercuts SEIU’s own members! Here’s what happened:

For many months, SEIU has been an active member of a statewide coalition of unions and community organizations that drafted a “Millionaires Tax Initiative” that would raise state income taxes on millionaires in order to restore funding to California’s schools and social services. The measure, designed for the November ballot, would raise an estimated $4-$6 billion a year.

SEIU helped write the tax measure and even insisted that the new tax revenues go to California’s cash-strapped cities, counties and schools, which employ more than 100,000 of SEIU’s members. As readers may recall, SEIU’s members are getting hammered at the bargaining table across the state. For example, nearly 1,000 members of SEIU Local 1021 in Mendocino County recently took a 12.5% pay cut, according to articles titled “County Seeking Big Concessions from SEIU” and “Supervisors Cut Workers’ Pay by 12.5%.”

The Millionaires Tax offered a perfect solution. So SEIU joined the coalition, which includes the California Federation of Teachers, the Courage Campaign, California Calls (a statewide coalition of community organizations), ACCE and others.

Well… umm… err… that is, until SEIU decided to sell out their labor and community allies!

Last month, SEIU officials suddenly announced they had abandoned the Millionaires Tax and instead were throwing their support behind a competing initiative that’s backed by the Governor and Big Business -- including the Business Roundtable (Bank of America, Safeway, Chevron, AT&T, Sutter Health, Kaiser Permanente, etc), Occidental Petroleum, a private prison corporation, the California Hospital Association (you know, the hospital industry) and other bastions of the 1%.

The Governor's initiative is favored by Big Business because it would raise revenues by hiking the sales tax on all Californians and imposing only a temporary tax hike on the wealthy.

So why did SEIU stab its labor and community allies in the back? Simple. SEIU officials cut a secret deal with Governor Jerry Brown whereby SEIU traded away its support for the Millionaires Tax in exchange for goodies from the Governor. What kind of goodies? According to sources, the Governor committed to support SEIU’s legislation to allow the Purple Palace to unionize thousands of California’s home-based childcare workers. In other words, SEIU is trading away tax revenues for its existing public-sector members so SEIU can grow its membership rolls.

Tasty hears the secret deal was cut when Gov. Brown “met privately” with SEIU President Mary Kay Henry during his recent trip to Washington, DC.

Several days later, SEIU’s Dave Kieffer began publicly attacking SEIU’s former coalition partners, as he did in this article that's entitled: “SEIU Director Tells Jerry Brown’s Tax-Plan Rivals to Step Aside.” In the article, Kieffer urges his former coalition partners to abandon the Millionaires Tax because the Governor is “the Daddy of California.” Kieffer offers other compelling reasons, like this one: if there are two competing measures on the November ballot, "we'll end up with this silly thing where the one with the most votes will get accepted."

Tasty hears that many of SEIU’s members are none too happy. Check out this photo of SEIU members at the recent Occupy Education rally in the state’s capital where workers displayed their support for the Millionaires Tax.

Meanwhile, the Millionaires Tax is polling far ahead of the Governor’s initiative, according to polls like this one. And the supporters of the Millionaires Tax are hanging tough despite the Governor's efforts to twist their arms and SEIU's public attacks. That's why the Governor has been forced to negotiate with the Coalition over a possible compromise initiative. If there is a compromise, Tasty can't wait to see what happens when the Coalition's members find themselves in a room with SEIU officials like Dave Kieffer!