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Hall of Lawsuit Hypocrites: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Employment and Civil Rights Lawyer Discusses The Hypocrisy of the United States Chamber of Commerce

Webster's defines a "hypocrite" as: (1) a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue; (2) a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.

Well, how apt.

As an employment and civil rights lawyer, my professional life is dedicated to protecting the 99% of people in this country who aren't corporate fat cats, power-brokers and the elite; in other words, all the workers at all levels of the economy. We don't represent corporations. We don't represent the government. We hold corporations accountable for what they do to workers. We fight discrimination, workplace harassment and abuse, retaliation and wage and hour abuse.

Now, that said, I'm also an employer. But I'd be a hypocrite if, as an employer, I engaged in discrimination, retaliation or workplace abuse. Why? Because I can't be "opposed" to the very conduct I myself engage in. If I did, I'd be putting on a "false appearance of virtue" and acting in "contradiction to my stated beliefs."

So that said, let's talk about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. There're a few things you need to know about them.

First, they're not a government agency promoting "commerce." In another classic example of lying, they call themselves by a name which implies "official" status, government affiliation, etc. But what they are is a private organization of business interests who lobby for "pro-business" policies and alteration of the way the Courts work to advantage corporate interests at the expense of working people. They've spent hundreds of millions of dollars lobbying elected officials to give immunity to the chamber's multinational corporate members. They're "business for business." Not for you.

Second, they're hypocrites. Here's why.

They have no problem filing lawsuit after lawsuit on behalf of powerful corporations, corporations like AIG, Walmart, Firestone and pharmaceutical and insurance companies. In the chamber's view, the courts are there for corporations to use, not for you to use.

The chamber's president and CEO, Tom Donohue, says that he "loves litigation" because it's "one of our most powerful tools for making sure that federal agencies follow the law and are held accountable." He wins the "hypocrite's hypocrite" award. Wow. But what about the right to sue for individuals, the workers who're the backbone of economic prosperity. What about their rights?

Screw you, is pretty much how the chamber feels. If you're not a corporate owner, or a part of the top 1%, you're nothing, you mean nothing, you deserve nothing.

Liar, pants on fire, Chamber. Readers, hold them accountable. Hold the politicians who take chamber money accountable, regardless of party affiliation and the other issues upon which you base your votes. Tell them we want workers' rights protected, the courts open and free and fair, and that the United States is not corporate playground for hypocrites.

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