Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

would be that the United States Supreme Court would have to concur in the asyet never-used “logical application” of its prior holding in Missouri v. Holland. Even assuming that Mr. Holman is correct in his interpretation, the "ifs" involved in any situation which might be the cause for alarm are patently very large.

Having painted the direst picture possible, Mr. Holman urges passage of a constitutional amendment proposed by the American Bar Association:

“A provision of a treaty which conflicts with any provision of this Constitution shall not be of any force or effect. A treaty shall become effective as internal law in the United States only through legislation by Congress which it could enact under its delegated powers in the absence of such treaty."

The first sentence of this proposed amendment is unobjectionable, except from the standpoint of possible confusion arising from the ambiguity of the language employed. However, in my view there is no need for such an amendment, since all indications are that Missouri v. Holland will not be construed as changing the rule which emphatically denies that the treaty-making authority "extends so far as to authorize authorize what the Constitution forbids."

The first part of the second sentence of the proposed amendment would make all treaties non-self-executing. This provision is unnecessary also, since the Senate in giving its advice and consent to ratification can specify that certain or all provisions of a treaty shall be considered henceforth as non-self-executing. In such a case, enabling legislation is required for implementation of the treaty provisions.

The clause in the second sentence of the proposed amendment which reads, "which it could enact under its delegated powers in the absence of such treaty," is designed to have the effect of annulling the holding in Missouri v. Holland. Although such a proposition may have strong emotional appeal, it has certain practical disadvantages which should be carefully weighed before any such idea is incorporated in a constitutional amendment.

As we all know, amending the Constitution is both a serious and complex process, and a proposal for amendment should not be made lightly or without good cause. In the present instance the alleged cause is a fear that the Constitution in its present form can and may be amended through exercise of the treaty power. Upon examination, the fear (and hence the cause behind the proposals) seems to evaporate into thin air. If this fear is not the cause, what then is the object of the whole campaign to amend the Constitution?

The underlying objectives probably are several and varied. Certain parts of the suggested amendments, such as the American Bar Association's phrase that “no treaty can amend the Constitution,” can be attributed to well-intentioned, if overzealous, desires to protect our cherished American constitutional liberties from nonexistent hobgoblins. Other parts, such as the ABA's proposal that the treaty power be strait-jacketed by the 10th amendment, probably are motivated by a perfectly honest desire to cut down on federal powers, regardless of the effects on our relations with other states.

Yet another motivation must be an intestinal dislike of international conventions in the field of individual rights. Some people believe, either consciously or unconsciously, that Americans have their liberties guaranteed, and others ought to shift for themselves. Of course this is alien to the whole ideological concept of the United Nations. It is entirely irrelevant whether we label the feeling as Americanism, neoisolationism, or call it by any other name. The motivations are perfectly honest and clear. However, the zeal of the proponents has carried some of them away and has led them to describe the international conventions, especially those related to genocide and human rights, as not only undesirable but also dangerous. It is the nonexistent danger which is described as making necessary a constitutional amendment.

Solicitor General Philip B. Perlman, in a Department of Justice memorandum on Senate Joint Resolution 130, 82d Congress, filed with the Judiciary Subcommittee on June 19, 1952, summarized the situation as follows:

"Since any constitutional limitation of the scope of treaties would weaken the position of this Nation at the international bargaining table, it is incumbent on the proponents of such a limitation to show a definite and compelling need for it. That showing is not made by pointing to particular treaties, not yet ratified or even submitted for ratification, which rightly or wrongly are said to be objectionable. It would be as appropriate to urge that because Congress may pass, and doubtless has passed, some bad laws it should be deprived of legislative power. If the United Nations conventions to which objections have been made by some of the proponents of these amendments are as bad as they are said to be, they will presumably not be ratified. And certainly there is no warrant for lightly assuming that the President and two -thirds of the Senate, all of whom are bound by oath to support the Constitution, would seek to subvert it.”

26 Ibid.

Pointing an accusing finger at various United Nations conventions, in draft form or otherwise, the various proponents of constitutional amendment say that under our present constitutional system these documents are Trojan horses in our midst. I submit, and I hope that have demonstrated, that, as far as representing dangers to our liberties is concerned, they more closely resemble Don Quixote's windmills.

Mr. SMITHEY. The first witness is Mr. Rudolph Faupl, who is the international representative of the machinists’union, A. F. of L.

The CHAIRMAN. We are delighted to have someone here representing that very fine organization.

STATEMENT OF RUDOLPH FAUPL, INTERNATIONAL REPRESENTATIVE, INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MACHINISTS, A. F. OF L.

Mr. Faupl. My name is Rudolph Faupl. I am the international representative of the machinists' union. My home is in Milwaukee, Wis.

In my capacity as international representative for the machinists' union, I attend international labor conventions, conferences, and, in general, work with representatives of other free trade unions toward improving the lot of workers everywhere and the attainment of peace with justice. On behalf of the Intenational Association of Machinists, I wish to voice and record strong opposition to Senate Joint Resolution No. 1, and sincerely express the hope of my organization that this resolution will not receive the approval of your committee.

The International Association of Machinists has concerned itself not only with the welfare of America and American labor; but we have come to realize that if freedom or democracy is to survive in our country and succeed throughout the rest of the world, there must be cooperation among nations who value freedom as we do in America.

I am one of many labor people who work toward cooperation with free trade unions everywhere and have observed that Senate Resolution No. 1 icasting serious doubts on our sincerity of purpose, particularly in the light of testimony before your committee from some of the supporters of the resolution.

The CHAIRMAN. You are referring to Mr. McGrath?
Mr. Faupl. That is right.
The CHAIRMAN. Why didn't you say so?
Mr. Faupl. I will come to that point.

I refer particularly to the testimony of the former employer representative to the ILO who contends that ILO conventions, when approved, become international law and the use of treaties is a means of transferring legislative authority over our own domestic affairs from our own lawmaking bodies to an international agency. This gentleman and some of his associates would have you believe that American labor and Government representatives to the ILO have gone on a rampage, bent on destroying aîl that is good in America and embracing all that is evil in the rest of the world--that which thev call socialism.

[blocks in formation]

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, it is indeed unfortunate that some of our employer representatives to the ILO should so completely lose their sense of fair play in reporting the activities of the International Labor Office as to misconstrue interpretations of conventions and recommendations adopted by that agency. I, too, have been a representative to the ILO and participated in the drafting and adoption of some of the conventions and recommendations referred to in the testimony before your committee. I submit that the reports of some of the employer delegates, which were given before your committee, are outright distortions and unjustifiable attacks on an agency that has been in existence for over 30 years and has performed valuable work toward improving the standard of living of exploited workers.

Let's examine some of the vicious Socialist legislation the ILO is trying to standardize, as the ex-employer representative mentions in his testimony before your committee.

They are safety provisions in the building industry. Did we not have safety provisions in the building industry established through legislation and collective bargaining long before Mr. McGrath became the employer representative to the ILO? The ex-representative then goes on to mention the conventions adopted by the ILO dealing with such matters as the gathering of statistics on wages and hours in mining, manufacturing, building, and agriculture; Government regulation of written contracts of employment of indigenous workers; Government regulation of hours of work and rest periods of bus and truck drivers; medical examination of children employed in industry; freedom of association of employees and protection in the right to organize; the setting up of a Federal employment service; regulation of night work of women employed in industry; labor clauses in public contracts; regulation of methods of payment of wages; Government regulation of employment agencies; minimum wages in agriculture; equal pay for men and women for equal work; holidays with pay in agriculture; social security; Government benefits for maternity.

These are some of the items that Mr. McGrath is holding up as the horrible socialistic practices the ILO is trying to export to America, when it is a matter of fact that practically all of the items enumerated have been established in our own country through Federal or State legislation or collective bargaining or both, resulting in the highest standard of living in the world for the American worker.

Mr. McGrath goes on to testify before your committee on the activities of the ILO in 1951, and I quote:

At the 1951 conference, the ILO passed a recommendation which contained two significant provisions. It stated, first, that under certain circumstances legislation should be enacted to enable governments to “negotiate, conclude, revise, and renew collective agreements," and, second, "Where appropriate, having regard to established collective bargaining practice, measures, to be determined by national laws or regulations and suited to the conditions of each country, should be taken to extend the application of all or certain stipulations of a collective agreement to all the employers and workers included within the industrial and territorial scope of the agreement."

Briefly summed up, what this means is that government should be empowered to take over collective bargaining and if it chose to do so, to spread it by arbitrary decree, to establishments not covered by an agreement.

I would like to quote the official record on the resolution that Mr. McGrath has made a reference to, which is recommendation 91 of the ILO. I participated in the discussion on the adoption of this resolution. Here is the official text as adopted, and I quote:

Collective-bargaining machinery: (1) Machinery appropriate to the conditions existing in each country should be established by means of agreement or laws or regulations as may be appropriate under national conditions to negotiate, conclude, revise, and renew collective agreements, or to be available to assist the parties in the negotiations, conclusion, revision, and renewal of collective agree ments; (2) the organization methods of organizations and functions of such machinery should be determined by the agreement between the partiesmeaning employers and unionsor by national law or regulations as may be appropriate under national conditions.

Mr. McGrath makes reference then to extension of collective agreements and you would assume that from his description, definition, interpretation that what the American delegates, Government and labor, have voted for is for the Government to arbitrarily extend collective agreements without regard to our practice as established in this country. Here again I would like to read you the official text as adopted by the ILO. This is headed “Extension of Collective Agreements." [Reading :)

1. Where appropriate, having regard to established collective-bargaining practice, measures to be determined by national laws or regulations and suited to the conditions of each country should be taken to the extent the application of all or certain stipulations of a collective agreement to all the employers and workers included within the industrial and territorial scope of the agreement.

2. National laws or regulations made make the extension of collective agreements subject to the following, among other, conditions:

(a) That collective agreement already covers a number of employers and workers concerned which is, in the opinion of the competent authorities, sufficiently representative.

(6) As a general rule the request for extension of the agreement shall be made by one or more organization of workers or employers who are parties to the agreement.

(c) That prior to the extension of the agreement the employers and workers to whom the agreement would be made applicable by its extension should be given an opportunity to submit their observations.

Mr. Chairman, I submit this proposition is no different than what we have been working and operating under as a trade union here in America. Sometimes we extend, by mutual agreement, contracts. Sometimes they are extended under certain regulations, wages and conditions, by Government regulation. I submit that the interpretation it placed upon the adoption of the ILO recommendation referred to by Mr. McGrath is absolutely erroneous.

Mr. SMITHEY. At that point, the comment in Mr. McGrath's statement which follows the quotation of the where-appropriate section which you read a moment ago was that, briefly sumined up, this means that the Government should be empowered to take over collective bargaining, and if it chose to do so, to spread it by arbitrary decree to establishments not covered by agreement.

I take it you disagree with that interpretation!
Mr. Faull. That is right.

Mr. SMITHEY. As a union man, do you think it would be desirable for the Government to be empowered to take over collective bargaining?

Mr. FauPL. I would say as far as our American customs and practices are concern

rned, no. However, one must bear in mind that the ILO consists of approximately 60 nations and it is not for us to tell some other country how they wish to establish collective bargaining agreements, whether they wish to extend them by their own process by law or whether they wish to arrive at them through collective bargaining. I happen to have been working with the trade unions in Europe. There are a lot of things I wou not want to advocate as an American for American labor, but I certainly have no right to tell them how their practice is to be established as long as they are satisfied it is a democratic process and the best for their welfare.

Senator DIRKSEN. Conversely, should they tell us whether we should pay our employees by check or in cash under a convention?

Mr. FAUPL. Senator Dirksen, I do not believe they are trying to tell us. I think that the language adopted by the ILO recommendation and convention is sufliciently flexible in order to afford us an opportunity to determine what methods of wage payment we desire as Americans. I assume that from the discussion I had with some of the representatives who insisted on language as to how workers shall be paid it was a problem where workers were not paid by check or cash and many, so we were told, performed work for which no payment was made at all. For that reason I believe they have a right to determine for themselves, but they are not trying to impose their thinking upon us.

Senator DIRKSEN. My friend, I am sorry that I must sharply disagree with

you. That is convention No. 95, if you are not familiar with it. Are you familiar with ILO!

Mr. FAUPL. Yes. I have been a delegate. I am not familiar with all of the convention.

Senator DIRKSEN. That was convention No. 95. Are you familiar with the resolution that they adopted to the effect that nations that fail to ratify these conventions should be cited to the bar of public opinion? Have you read the language of that resolution?

Mr. FAUPL. No; I have not.

Senator DiRKSEN. Then you ought to go back and read it. We are dealing here with group pressures along with everything else. If we are to be cited at the bar of public opinion for failure either to have the President submit those conventions to the Senate, or failure of the Senate to ratify them, then evidently we stand condemned in the eyes of those who have undertaken to ratify it, namely, those nations that have a more socialitsic concept of government than we do.

Mr. SMITHEY. At the ILO convention was there any discussion, either in your labor group, or among the groups which drafted the conventions, of whether or not the areas to be covered by these conventions were proper subjects for the conclusion of conventions?

Mr. Faupl. To my knowledge on the procedure, usually the labor group meets separately and the employers meet separately to discuss the proposed draft. They then discuss the conclusions in light of their experience and what they think the coverage should be. Occasionally there are consultations between government, labor, and employer representatives. Many times we have advanced discussion from our own experience that has been adopted by the American labor delegates. Many times we have accepted suggestions and recommendations of others, either to be incorporated to a convention or a resolution or recommendation.

« ÎnapoiContinuați »