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Harmer staff unaware of Castlewood lockout when booking event

Original post made on Aug 5, 2010

Republican congressional candidate David Harmer's crossing picket lines of locked-out Castlewood Country Club workers was not a deliberate act, according to Harmer's campaign manager. Other groups have canceled events until the dispute is settled.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, August 5, 2010, 1:10 PM

Comments (34)

Posted by Stephanie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 2:04 pm

Hooray for the Harmer organization for supporting a local business.

Too bad the "rent a mob" union is not in favor of local business. They are deliberately trying to destroy the private sector...consistent with other McNerney.

Posted by Stephanie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 2:11 pm

BTW: I find it very revealing how the PW Editor entitles this article...instead of something to the effect of "Harmer Campaign Event Supports Local Business" ... or at least a mention of this in the body of the article.

But no.

The PW's agenda is to tear down any Republican.

The PW has a detestable bias toward Socialist Democrats who are determined to tear apart our US Constitution, our freedoms, our national defense, our opportunity for energy independence, our family values.

Posted by bob, a resident of Valley Trails
on Aug 5, 2010 at 3:39 pm

Go Harmer. Go Castlewood. Go home strikers / union.

Posted by Rae, a resident of Mohr Park
on Aug 5, 2010 at 5:08 pm

I'm not surprised that Mr. Harmer chose to cross the picket line. Whether or not it was deliberate, he, his staff and his supporters definitely put the Republican viewpoint prominantly on display.

What I am surprised about is that he and his staff knew nothing about the lockout, especially since the lockout has frequently been in the news in a town that's smack dab in the middle of CD11 . . .

Oh, but wait, what am I thinking! Mr. Harmer doesn't live in CD11. Of course he wouldn't know about any news in Pleasanton, even if it does concern a rather large business in the middle of a town located the middle of the district in which he's currently campaigning.

Posted by stevep, a resident of Parkside
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:21 pm

Rae, thanks for parading your uninformed bias and ignorance of Pleasanton by trying to trash Harmer. Castlewood is NOT in the middle of Pleasanton, nor is it in the middle of CD11.
Not that your rant would have any merit regardless.......I hope the union gets busted and the people that really care to work in service of the Castlewood community can get back to earning a livelihood.
Those folks should be lucky to have employment in this Obama rescession..............

Posted by Marie, a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 7:19 am

Why does everyone think that they have a vote on what Castlewood does? It is a privately owned by its 710 members. If you want a say in how Castlewood does business then join the club and you will have a say.

Posted by J, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:00 am

Next step is to break the back of the public employee's unions

Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:52 am

Arrogant and stupid. It just goes to show how out-of-touch Harmer is. After all, his campaign headquarters is just across 680 from Castlewood (at Koll Center). It wouldn't kill him to pick up a copy of the Weekly to keep up with what's going on in town. Very scary that he actually wants to represent us!

Posted by Educated, a resident of Foothill High School
on Aug 6, 2010 at 10:01 am

Rae, you know not of what you speak. Pleasanton is right on the edge of CD11. In fact, some of the western side of Pleasanton is not even in CD11. They get the pleasure of being in Pete Stark's district.

It's not uncommon for US reps to live outside their district. In fact, Harmer ran in his own district and was beaten by someone (Garamendi) who lives outside that district.

Unions are a BIG part of California's problem. I say hooray to Castlewood for standing up to them. I wish more businesses, and especially the government would stand up to them more often. The problem is government officials have no qualms using OUR money to buy union votes to get THEM reelected. Castlewood owners have the right to spend their money any way they want as long as it's legal. I know plenty of people who would love to work at Castlewood under their current contract. Supply and demand is the name of the game, or should be anyway.

Posted by Steve, a resident of Stoneridge
on Aug 6, 2010 at 10:08 am

I think the Castlewood employees need to abandon the union that has done nothing for them, and negociate with the owners in good faith. They need to realize that if they can get a better deal on another job, they need to work somewhere else. However, I don't think they can find a better deal.

It sounds like if they continue down this path, the employees are just hurting the business they need for a job. Maybe if they stay on strike long enough, Castlewood won't need their services any longer.

Posted by Just me, a resident of Mohr Park
on Aug 6, 2010 at 10:36 am

1. it's a lock out - Castlewood's actions not the union's - so don't blame the people on the picket line.
2. Most politicans - Democrat & Republican - are out of touch with what is going on in private, independent, small businesses. (recession what recession!!??)
3. All those blaming the workers on the picket line, take a look at their pay scale, health benefits etc...and see if you can live in Pleasanton on those, let alone with the cutbacks Castlewood wants....then look at Castlewood's 'bottom line' and how much their top people make - or at least guess since it isn't public.

No one should be suprised when a politician's staff is ignorant of what is happening to working class/middle class Americans in their area.

Posted by susan, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 6, 2010 at 10:44 am


Posted by Anna, a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 11:00 am

From what I recall, the 'actual' Castlewood union employees wanted out and were willing to negotiate directly with the Club...but when it came to a vote, the 'other' (non-Castlewood employees) voted as well and kept them from backing out of the union.
By the way...the picket line that shows up near the lower golf course consists of 'shipped in' union folks. I have yet to see any recognizable Castlewood employee striking.

Posted by Klisvak, a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 11:39 am

The union is gone, gone and forever gone. All the "discriminated" Castlewood union employees are happily working in other Pleasanton/Dublin restaurants, while collecting the Union's support pay. They love it. It's a win-win situation.

Posted by Joe, a resident of Siena
on Aug 6, 2010 at 12:03 pm

Go Harmer! BYE BYE McNerney!!

Posted by Chet, a resident of San Ramon
on Aug 6, 2010 at 12:37 pm

Harmer--What a great name for a GOer--- Should not even be considered as our Rep in District 11. HE DOES NOT EVEN LIVE IN OUR DISTRICT!!!

Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 2:24 pm

Couldn't you still support local small businesses, while holding your function at a less controversial location? There are many fine venues in this town, owned by well-deserving locals. But Harmer chose Castlewood Country Club. It speaks to who he is.

Posted by Steve, a resident of Birdland
on Aug 6, 2010 at 4:49 pm

Yet another reason that I will vote for Harmer. And no, I'm not a Republican - I voted for McNerney in 2008 and 2006.

Posted by Butt out !, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 6:17 pm

Wrong... the old chicken & egg. The unions & employees started it. The employees gave up their personal birthright to freedom when they surrendered their rights to the union. They choose to render themselves union slaves, who can only do what they are TOLD to do. No freedom of choice. IF they were still free Americans, they could be free to work where they choose. They 'paid their money' (literally) and they 'took their chances.
I'm fairly certain Castlewood is not in that congressional district...other writer correct that pete stark has most of the southern & western parts of Pleasanton....but facts are irrelevant to those who are just trying to throw cold water on facts. Hey Chet, did it bother you when perpetual candidate Dem Garimendi was elected to & is now in congress, even tho HE DID NOT LIVE in the District ?? SO INconsistent ! No surprise.

Posted by Ty, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 6, 2010 at 7:53 pm

"Harmer" is German for "carpetbagger"

Posted by Sara, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:01 pm

While Harmer is not a carpetbagger, even if he were I'd run to vote for him over McNerney...who is a mere lapdog for Nancy Pelosi.

Did you know that the name "McNerney" means "lapdog" in Irish?

Posted by MoreOfTheStory, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:12 pm

Castlewood submitted contract proposals to the union bosses for nearly a year before the lockout action. The union bosses would not allow their members to vote up or down on these proposals, even though there was strong desire from many of the workers to have this opportunity. The workers have not been allowed to vote on even one proposal. Their union bosses will not allow it. Castlewood took the lockout action because of the union's stubborn refusal to negotiate in good faith and because the club needs to have the workers pay part of the rapidly escalating cost of their healthcare plans. The union is more anti-Castlewood than pro-worker in all of this. Although the dining room is still well patronized, Castlewood is fully within their rights to close it down for several months, thereby permanently ending the union's relationship with them, and reopen at some later date with no union workers whatsoever.

Posted by Steve, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 7, 2010 at 11:53 am

Harmer only lives a couple of blocks from living in District 11. The thing is, I believe his children attend school in the district and they participate in a lot of District 11 community affairs. In other words, he and his family are very involved in District 11. There are a couple of things about the Castlewood site for the luncheon - Castlewood is a private entity and the dispute with the striking workers is over a cut in their healthcare. In an economy where all of us (individual and business) are cutting back. My company has cut my healthcare benefit, raised my contribution towards it to help offset a huge increase for my coworkers that opt for family coverage. Essentially if I didn't like what was offered, I could go off and try to find another job with better benefits. The Castlewood employees should be glad they could unionize, that they have been offered health benefits and they should be glad they have a job in this bad economy. Secondly, the campaign did not know there was a labor disipute until a couple of days before the event. I don't know when the event was booked - but have you ever tried to move an event a couple of days before it is scheduled - the result is a complete mess and contractually you are liable.

Aside from Glen writing his zingers showing his bias - I ask if he has ever talked to David Harmer. I have personally met the man and her is very personable, will take the time to speak and listen to you and he has a good handle on issues and what is needed to change the way Washington is doing business. In other words, instead of following Pelosi's lead by standing with her >95% of the time and disregarding/ignoring and avoiding the will of his constituents - David not only talks the talk, but walks the walk. He cares what his supporters say, has a finger on the pulse of the community and will be a wonderful representative of the District's wishes. So Glen - I think when you are trying to be a staff writer - you should follow the journalistic creed as written by Walter Williams "I believe that clear thinking and clear statement, accuracy and fairness are fundamental to good journalism" instead of writing an article that clearly shows your bias.

Posted by Geraldine, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Aug 7, 2010 at 12:00 pm

B, I guess it just shows you how often Harmer volunteers go to lunch or dinner at Castlewood. Don't think it is arrogance or stupidity, remember, volunteers DON'T get paid - seems to me they live on a budget.

Posted by Rae, a resident of Mohr Park
on Aug 8, 2010 at 11:55 am

Despite persistent attempts to portray Mr. Harmer as close to CD11 issues, Mr. Harmer does not have ANY ties to this Congressional District. He does NOT live in CD11, when employed he did NOT work in CD11, and his children do NOT go to school in CD11 - they attend Windemere schools in the family's home neighborhood.

Detractors from Rep McNerney like to repeat that he is a "puppet" of Rep Nancy Pelosi because he voted with the Democrats "95% of the time".

Do these same folks think that Mr. Harmer, if elected as a junior Congressional House Representative, will vote independently? Mr. Harmer will undoubtedly follow his Republican leadership and vote the same way as Reps Boehner and Cantor, as well as the "Honorable" (LOL!!) Sessions who just sponsored his fundraiser in Pleasanton. I guess that will make him a Republican voting "puppet" . . . and one with no ties or loyalty to CD11.

Posted by Stephanie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 8, 2010 at 12:05 pm

Harmer would vote consistent with what the Founder's envisioned for America.

Democrats like McNerney vote 180 degrees opposite of what our Founder's envisioned and what the US Constitution, along with its Amendments spells out.

Posted by Rae, a resident of Mohr Park
on Aug 8, 2010 at 12:41 pm


I guess if what the "Founder's envisioned for America" was someone who has shown that he is more than willing to turn a blind eye to finance irregularities while working for a Congressional candidate/elected representative in order to advance his career, then you've definitely got your person! He reminds me of the last conservative Republican who represented CD11, the "Honorable" Richard Pombo.

Posted by Stephanie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 8, 2010 at 4:04 pm

I don't know how much more I can take of your liberal spew.

In case you haven't noticed (tho I am sure you have but have swept this "minor issue" under the carpet and hope no one else notices)...if Obama and his Communist Czars were even moderately interested in "fixing" this economy and tightening financial regulations, one might think they'd fix the major cause of the problem...namely Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

But no.

They continue to operate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac by handing out more subprime loans and causing another bubble which will burst again in the future.

Words cannot describe how much I loathe people like you.

As democrat Pat Caudell states, the American public is at pre-revolutionary status...and so is he in his disagreement with the Obama Admin.

Posted by Uncle George, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2010 at 8:51 am

Hooray for Harmer!

The Castlewood workers, who are predominantly illegals, should pack up and go back to their home country. It would be a big load off the public assistance roles.

People should start realizing how much unionized workers are costing each and every American (such as the auto industry that has been decimated, the outrageous pensions received by government workers, or the events/conventions that no longer come to California).

So, be sure to vote for Harmer and oust McNerney, the union's pawn.

Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2010 at 9:43 am

Geraldine, it was a $2400 luncheon at an expensive private club. Clearly, your definition of "living on a budget" is quite different from mine.

Quite frankly, I'm not a big fan of unions, and am not interested in taking sides on this debate. My only point is that it is very disturbing that he and his staff had no clue about this dispute. His campaign office is only blocks away (Koll Center), and he wants to represent Pleasanton in Congress. If he wants to represent me, he and his staff should pay attention to what's going on in town. This dispute has hardly been a well-kept secret.

There are many fine locally-owned venues in the district where he could have chosen to hold this event.

Posted by Rae, a resident of Mohr Park
on Aug 9, 2010 at 11:19 am

Even given the limitations of the original Constitution, minus Amendments, that did not give the vote to women and men of color, I've always believed that hate and intolerance were two things the "founding fathers" did not "envision" or desire in the new nation they were creating.

The hate and intolerance that you and like-minded Christian, conservative, Republican, Tea Party enthusiasts, to use your words, spew on Americans who happen to hold a different political view than yours is just one more reason NOT to vote for the candidate of your choice . . . a politician you obviously believe will hold true to your ideals.

Thanks, but no thanks.

Posted by Stephanie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2010 at 11:47 am

Must make you feel especially proud that your political ideals are the same as this organization below which supports 100% the platform of Obama...

What is that organization you ask?

It is the Communist Party USA >>> Web Link

Posted by John, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2010 at 12:57 pm

Since you say that the Communist Party of the USA supports Obama's platform 100%, I would have to show you just one policy they oppose to prove your statement incorrect. The communists and many on the farther left are vehemently opposed to the ongoing guerrilla war in Afghanistan.

Posted by Lisa, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 10, 2010 at 11:26 am

I am so sick of Teabaggers saying they are "taking back" this country. Taking it back from who? Those of us who voted are all citizens. We are all EQUALLY entitled to free speech in this country, and Equally entitled to elect officials we deem fit. Teabaggers dressing up as patriots , angry that they lost, How ironic this is.
Harmer is a Republican. As a group, they have had no regard for unions and the protection of labor. This just seems more of the same. His campaign people "not knowing" about the strike is indicative of who they are and who they are not. More just speaks volumes for itself.

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