The AFL-CIO is all about the war against the evil, anti-union Koch brothers – just as long as nobody boycotts any of the Koch companies that employ massive numbers of union employees. Ben Smith notes this interesting contradiction from the AFL-CIO blog:
A number of organizations are advocating a boycott of the products that come from companies owned by the Koch family. This is problematic for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it could potentially hurt the wrong people.
The Koch brothers own Georgia Pacific. It is an American consumer goods company that makes everyday products like facial tissue, napkins, paper towels, paper cups and the like. Their plants are great examples of American advanced manufacturing. Incidentally, GP makes most of its products here in America. The company’s workforce is highly unionized. In fact, 80 percent of its mills are under contract with one or more labor union. It is not inaccurate to say that these are among the best-paid manufacturing jobs in America.
Georgia Pacific runs over 300 manufacturing facilities, and employs over 40,000 workers, according to its website. By employing such a high number of union members, the AFL-CIO says the Koch brothers put the labor movement in an awkward situation. “This presents a dilemma and a paradox,” laments the AFL-CIO on its blog. “While the Koch brothers are credited with advocating an agenda and groups that are clearly hostile to labor and labor’s agenda, the brothers’ company in practice and in general has positive and productive collective bargaining relationships with its unions.”
Does the nefariousness of the Koch brothers know no bounds? Clearly they only unionized their company in order to undermine future potential boycotts and fracture the pro-labor left.