Saturday, April 30, 2011

ALEC demands workplace drug testing

ALEC sure went to the wrong town for its convention, didn't they?

All because they happened to choose the one major city I could get to within a reasonable timeframe, I've been encouraged to familiarize myself with what ALEC does. And now the genie's out of the bottle, and it ain't going back in. ALEC coming to Cincinnati may very well be the undoing of the entire right-wing legislative agenda - because I don't let up.

Rotten luck for them, huh?

I happen to notice that one of the "model bills" on ALEC's agenda is what it calls its Workplace Drug Testing Act. ALEC's website doesn't provide the text of its bills to anybody except members - but I knew a bill with a name like that couldn't possibly be good if it comes from ALEC.

I was right. A different right-wing website has the bill's text:

ALEC's "model legislation" would allow employers to drug-test any worker any time they want. It doesn't matter what the worker's job is, or how safety-sensitive their position is. Any employees could be tested - whether they're fast food cashiers, top executives, or anybody else.

Perhaps even worse, this bill would shield employers from litigation arising from drug testing policies. It even protects them from being sued for defamation if they blab the results of a worker's drug test everywhere.

Um. Why is ALEC claiming to be for smaller government if it backs bills like this? Simple. It's another example of right-wingers' ongoing habit of calling things the exact opposite of what they really are. ALEC is a shadow legislature for not just big government but GIGANTIC government.

I'd be willing to bet that ALEC is also behind the recent flurry of bills to require a drug test to get government aid. Supporters of these bills keep arguing that because people who have jobs get tested, why shouldn't those who are out of a job? (Never mind that it's already been ruled unconstitutional.) Well, whose fault is it that people get tested at work? It's ALEC's fault, judging by their workplace drug testing bill.

If only ALEC would support bills to weaken intrusive workplace drug testing instead of expanding it, the unemployed wouldn't be tested less than those with jobs. In other words, ALEC's allies are complaining about a matter that ALEC helped cause.

I'm sure you can fill an entire book with examples of ALEC's penchant for social and economic engineering. This entry is just a start.