II. a NEW group??


Come early for jambalaya, salad and other goodies before the 7PM
meeting! The food will be served at 5:30 PM, so come get a space
before the parking lot is full, and before the food is gone!.

Tomorrow night we have another chance to further break up the
old boys’ club. The last thing this Local needs is another YES
person among the Executive Officers for the RMA movers and
shakers. You need only look at where we are as a Local to know

Given what this Local has been mired in, we’ve had some stunning
successes lately in breaking out of our political box. Our officers
and board have embarrassed us and exposed us legally with their
bumbling actions and overly-supple spines. Now we get our chance
to really flex our re-found rank-and-file muscle and what are our choices?
A hand-picked protégé of the old regimae who has quickly shown already
how low she will bow to get this job or a proven, professional champion
of the average guy (and gal) in our Local. Our best chance in this next
phase of our Local’s reform is a vote for David Schubach for Secretary-

1) If the SELA contract has helped you, thank David. He started the
drive to make it available.
2) If you’ve profited in the past from the Referral Service, thank David.
He was its most-successful manager.
3) If you value experience, he’s been elected and reelected Vice President
of this Local.
4) If you treasure the privacy of your Social Security number, thank
David., since he spearheaded the creation of a Local union account number
to replace it on computer screens and correspondence. (The fact that it is
still easily viewable on every Local monitor is a pity, though…)
5) Since we have saved many thousands of dollars by bringing the Overture’s
typesetting in-house, thank David. It was his battle against heavy resistance
which made it happen.
6) As we now have coherent job descriptions to organize and protect our
office employees, thank David. That project was his baby.
7) And if you think our Local desperately needs real, practical business
experience to clean up the management and availability of our finances and
records, THINK David.

All these changes are concrete improvements that have benefited the entire
membership and mustn’t be ignored or forgotten.


On the other hand, scrutiny of the other candidate’s brief appointed stint as
interim Secretary-Treasurer has already shown that she is comfortable
continuing the regrettable practice of withholding by-law-mandated free
member access to certain Local records and information. Status quo or
not? On Monday, you get to choose.

Further, in the last two weeks we’ve received unfortunate reports of Ms.
Lashinsky’s short fuse and outright rudeness to members and office employees
while acting in the scope of her job. As the Secretary-Treasurer is the public
face of our Local, it had better be a civil and professional one, without excuses
or apologies.

We, the rank-and-file ARE making a difference. Be a part of it and send a
message! If you’ve always grumbled and complained about how the union
doesn’t listen to you, or do anything for you, you couldn’t find a clearer choice!

The story below is yet one more reason we need a change. We’ve even had
reports of members of the board asking if we need 2nd opinions on the legal
counsel they’ve been getting.




Can these guys ever communicate and give us the whole story? It appears
not. They talked about the notice from the National Right to Work Legal
Defense Foundation, but read the press release for yourself and you’ll see
what President Espinosa has brought upon our Local in a NATIONAL
(translate “highly visible and expensive”) way. They just happened to
leave out that a federal unfair labor practice charge has been filed against
our Local, charging the Local with violating federal court rulings. We
don’t know whom he’s listening too when he makes these decisions,
but we strongly encourage him to consult someone else!

You’ve seen Local 47’s email of last Thursday, now read what they
were reacting to.


Hollywood Union Hit with Federal Charge After Union Officials Threaten Musicians With Arrests

Union officials threaten to have musicians arrested at rehearsal tonight for exercising their legal rights

Hollywood, CA (October 11, 2007) – With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, a New Era Scoring Orchestra musician filed a federal charge today against the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) Local 47 responding to an ugly union campaign of intimidation, coercion, and retaliation against employees exercising their legal rights.

Sai-Ly Acosta, a violinist for the film score orchestra, filed a federal unfair labor practice charge at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) after union officials enforced an illegal policy requiring all musicians to be “in good standing” with the union in order to practice in a union-owned rehearsal facility used by their orchestra. Union officials informed Acosta, who is not a formal member of the AFM union, she and others would be arrested if they attended rehearsal tonight.

Of course, musical groups require that all musicians, as a condition of employment, participate in certain rehearsals – many occurring in facilities owned by AFM Local 47. However, Acosta and several of her coworkers exercised their legal right to resign from formal union membership and pay a reduced fee to cover the cost of union bargaining. As a result, union officials are attempting to unlawfully prevent her from practicing with the orchestra. Union operatives have harassed and intimidated the dissenting musicians, calling them “scabs.”

“These thuggish actions by union officials are both despicable and illegal,” said Stefan Gleason, vice president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. “But this union intimidation is all too common in states like California where there is no Right to Work law on the books.”

Under the Foundation-won Supreme Court decision in Communications Workers v. Beck and subsequent NLRB rulings, union officials cannot require formal union membership or the payment of union dues unrelated to collective bargaining as a condition of employment. Employees are also entitled to notice of their right to refrain from union membership, an independent audit of union expenditures, and notice of their right to object to paying for non-bargaining activities, such as union political activities.

Because Acosta and other musicians exercised their legal rights under Beck, they have been unlawfully targeted for retaliation. The unfair labor practice charge will be reviewed by the NLRB’s Regional Director who will decide whether to take the union to trial before a federal labor judge.

“No one should be forced to pay dues to an unwanted union just to get or keep their job,” continued Gleason.

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation


What has this Local’s actions brought?,… federal charges from an aggressive, well-financed national organization. And a boatload of legal bills on the horizon. Why couldn’t we have found a more-nuanced and quieter (and more cost-effective)

Thanks, Mr. Espinosa. Nice strategy.


II. a NEW Group?

Did you receive an email from MUSICIANS FOR A BETTER ADMINISTRATION?
We did and were saddened that those who need to safeguard the way things are
would assume you members would be shallow enough to be influenced by it. It
was also a pretty good laugh.

This new “group” is misnamed, since if they really are for a better administration
that means they don’t like who’s there. A more honest name would be “Committee
for the Status Quo” (“MSQ?” nah, but more accurate.), “Musicians for the Elite
Players Interests (MEPI), or the “Musicians for the Boot-licking Administration” (“MBA” [Perfect! Same initials!].)

Obviously, the RMA has a role here. We’ve heard from a couple of members
who, having not worked with the “clique” for years, were magically called for
work over the last few weeks. At the conclusion of the sessions, these players
were told, “We expect you to attend the October 22nd meeting and vote for Leslie.”

We find it hard to believe that Leslie would want to win this election through
the coercion of others. Then again, we didn’t think she’d make the last Overture
before the special election into a “Leslie Lashinsky Special” either, with 3 articles,
pictures and ads for her gigs. It might not have been technically against the bylaws,
since it’s a special election, but it does speak to her character and overwhelming
sense of entitlement to victory. It came off to us as rather shameless and arrogant.

Please note that in this email, as with any email that attacks the COMMITTEE
FOR A MORE RESPONSIBLE LOCAL 47, it’s long on accusations but short
on specifics. Compare that to OUR emails. We have a three-year track record
of getting very specific (with concrete examples) AND in most cases telling
you where we got the info.

In case you didn’t get it, their ridiculous mailing is reprinted below, with our reactions
in Parenthesis ()….


Maintain Stability at Local 47 –
Elect Leslie Lashinsky
Local 47, Monday, Oct. 22, 7:00 PM

We’ve been all receiving emails from a committee who claims to be responsible,
while inferring that those in office at Local 47 are not.
(If anyone is continuing to receive our emails, it’s because they want to. Our
community is the easiest one in town… to get out of. Anyone can easily
remove themselves from the list at any time.)

This time out, their goal is to get David Schubach elected to yet a different
office than the last two offices he has run for and lost.
This committee sends out angry, divisive letters that promote an “us against
them” strategy. Nothing could be worse for our union than riling people up
and feeding on their fears, yet this is exactly what Chuck Fernandez is doing.
(This from the people who wrote the manual on “us against them” and “riling
people up feeding on fears.” Are they KIDDING?

The “responsible” committee emails are full of erroneous statements and
made up statistics. Every one of their claims should be examined and
(They have been examined, carefully examined, for years and have told you
ourselves not to take our word for what we say, to check it out yourselves…
We didn’t get our large and loyal readership by shoveling crapola.

A careful read of each of those emails reveal a constant theme. That is, that
RMA and their supporters are not “rank and file” members, but the
committee members are. Not rank and file? Not deserving of a voice in this
Local? Less deserving of the representation of their choice? And all this
despite the fact that both Chuck Fernandez and David Schubach are dues
paying RMA members every year.
Is that responsible?
(Since the non-elite, ever-dreaming rank-and-file of the RMA have their
careers (and votes) held captive by their leaders, elite, and contractors, our
editorial judgments are never aimed at them. And “representation of their
choice” is a cynical contradiction in terms when that choice is, usually,

The committee vilifies the 1000 plus musicians working in film by the
contract, while glorifying the group who exercised their Beck rights to
do non-union scoring.
Is that responsible?
(As the term “working in film by the contract” is meaningless without
knowing how often it happens for how many musicians, numbers like
“1000-plus” are also meaningless. If there were that many opportunities
in making, and not just waiting for, meaningful livings in recording, there
wouldn’t BE any fi-core musicians. We’ve repeatedly advocated against
adopting that status. However, our first objective is truth and clarity,
impossible if we only dispense facts that are popular.)

They’ve riled up the membership. They’ve disrupted the flow of business
at Local 47 and attacked staff, the board and the officers, including Serena
Williams. They’ve created chaos and relentlessly threatened the harmony
and workflow at Local 47.
Is that responsible?
(“Riled up the membership?” The same thing has been said of Thomas
Jefferson, Thomas Paine, Patrick Henry, and Samuel and John Adams.
There is a huge difference between officers/board members, who are
elected, and staff employees, who have never been attacked. Except
for an illegally-employed office manager, whose ex-felon status was
exposed, forcing his firing. And if “harmony and workflow at Local 47”
is only achieved by trampling on the members’ rights, perhaps it should
be threatened occasionally.)

Now, they want you to vote for David Schubach for Secretary/Treasurer.
Schubach has now run for every office at Local 47. He lost the last two
elections for VP and President. During Schubach’s term as VP he worked
by himself and ignored the team. He got along poorly with other officers
and staff. He was reprimanded for very serious behavioral issues towards
females and was assigned mandatory counseling. People rarely change.
(Once again, “ignored the team” and “got along poorly with other officers”
are meaningless without context. A hell of a good case could be made that
the “team” and “other officers,” by virtue of powerful and coercive re-election
forces, felt secure enough to “ignore” and “not get along” with HIM. One
person’s malcontent is another person’s visionary. David can certainly defend
himself effectively. And if “people rarely change,” then Locals rarely change
either, especially when they get the same incumbents and clones over and over.)

The current staff and elected officers are very much against a return of Schubach,
his work ethic and his behavior. He can only create discord and disunity at
Local 47.
(That’s not the story we’re hearing. One employee even calls Leslie, “THE
BROAD”. The employees we’ve spoken to find her condescending, rude and
haughty. But let’s be serious, with this administration’s record of retaliation,
does anyone with over half a brain think these employees are going to answer
honestly with their jobs on the line? Please…)

Leslie Lashinsky is currently acting as Secretary/Treasurer at Local 47.
• Leslie has impeccable credentials as a successful musician.
(What’s that got to do with her responsibilities as an information, data,
and correspondence manager?

• All current officers including Serena Williams endorse Leslie
(We’re shocked, shocked to find out that they’ve endorsed their hand-
picked successor!)

• Leslie is well liked by the staff, and she is qualified in every way.
(They, and we, can’t ethically give on-the-record evidence of the staff’s
feelings one way or the other, so this statement is pure sheepdip.)

• Leslie will maintain the necessary peace and balance at the Local .
(That’s true, if peace and balance means fighting info for the members
and doing everything for the RMA leadership through our compromised

• Leslie has served Local 47 in multiple capacities for 8 years
(With an 8 year track record, why can they not point to a single

• Leslie is a dedicated long term AFM member of 4 Locals

• Leslie has served on several Orchestra Negotiating committees.
(Skills neither used or needed as Secretary-Treasurer)

• Leslie already has the training and several months of experience.
(And a growing reputation for blocking mandated member access
to Local financials, teeing off employees, and verbally abusing

• Leslie brings continuity; she is already doing a great job!
(We defy you to name ONE instance where her interim performance
has improved the office’s record for failure to provide on-demand
access (under the by-laws) to Local financial information.

Establishing and maintaining a career as a musician is hard enough,
without hate-based internal fighting. Show up at Local 47 Monday
night at 7 p.m. to vote. You must be present at the meeting to vote.
There is no absentee voting.
(Yes, it is difficult maintaining a career as a musician, especially
with near monopolies in place. What they’re really saying is
“Shut up and let us have our way.” Sorry folks, the Local is far, far
bigger than just you, and this administration needs to finally, finally
get that.)

Help send a real message of responsibility. Let’s return Local 47 to a
stable, peaceful and professional existence.
(In others words, ethical, substantial dissent is a bitch. Let’s make it
go away.)



The stakes on Monday are clear. We can continue the reform or fall
behind. Don’t worry; no one will see how each of you votes. The only
intimidation you should feel when you vote is your own good conscience.
And if enough (many hundreds!) of us turn out, the voice of the Local will
be an honest one, beyond intimidation by any minority. But if your vote
turns out to be the one that could have made a difference, but was absent,
don’t complain to us if you don’t like the result. Whichever way it goes,
we will continue our work to accurately evaluate job performance so you
can make an informed choice at the bi-annual election.



The comments below are the views of the contributors and not
necessarily those of the COMMITTEE.


All right, enough’s ENOUGH! Even the government has a statute of
limitations on crimes just shy of murder. How long will Schubach have
to pay for the one accusation of coffee-ordering from a female subordinate?
And how long will some of you keep holding a grudge against him beyond
all reason for a botched negotiation that was dumped on him at the eleventh
hour by Espinosa? Are we to be deprived of his skills forever? GET REAL,
FOLKS. Most of the time, you get to vote for one out of TWO candidates.
That means you don’t ever, ever get perfection. These MBA yo-yo’s, a laundry
list of the DeCrescent mob, sprang up to dump on David because they are
threatened by ANY ideological turnover in our boardroom. GOD could run
against them and they’d dump on Him because of age.

What, did you think we’d fix our Local and get all our work back from Seattle,
Prague, and Sandy by one quick, hail-Mary pass to the end zone? Are you
kidding? Short passes, folks. Lots of them. Openings like this one come
along literally once in 20 years. Don’t blow it! If you vote for Leslie, you
are voting for Hal, Vince, and our do-nothing Board all over again, not to
mention the PMG. Look at the endorsements!


Dear Committee:

Leslie Lashinsky is in office for one reason: she’s been a good soldier for the
RMA and their president, Hal. She’ll do what she’s told, she’ll keep the illegal
policies of her predecessor Serena in place (like withholding the detailed audit
reports from members), and perhaps most importantly she’ll keep her mouth shut
while Hal, Vince and the RMA leadership continue the costly dismantling of
Local 47’s services for everyone except the recording elite. People like Leslie
Lashinsky are responsible for the gigantic rift between Local 47 and the AFM,
a divide that only hurts Local 47 members.

A vote for Leslie Lashinsky is a vote to give over Local 47 to the RMA and
their single-minded interests of maintaining their own “special payments” no
matter how much work is driven out of town as a result. A vote for Leslie
Lashinsky is a vote to continue the policies that resulted in the firings of
longtime Local 47 employees Barbara Markay and Errol Henry for no
apparent reason. A vote for Leslie Lashinsky is a vote for the politics of
bitterness, hate and division as so vividly was demonstrated by Hal Espinosa
during the election this year, as they lost every single initiative they tried to
get passed at the Convention. The delegates there were able to see these people
and their self-centered politics for who they truly are.

We need a balance to RMA/Espinosa, not another RMA supporter who seeks to
divide our local from the AFM instead of working together for the interests of
all musicians. The office of secretary-treasurer is simply too important to be
handed over to person whose loyalties begin and end with the elite few among
us who only want to fatten their wallets further no matter who and how many
other musicians suffer as a result.

We need an independent thinker at Local 47 who doesn’t surrender their
objectivity and ethics at the door to be part of “Team Espinosa”. We need
an intelligent, thoughtful, and passionately independent unionist who will
look out for the interests of ALL Local 47 members, not just the recording

We need David Schubach.


I just got an email from the Bogus “Musicians for a Better Administration”.
RMA by any other name.

It’s against RMA’s charter to endorse any candidate, so they dreamed up yet
a different organization to carry the flag.

The RMA-Elite found a way to endorse Leslie Lashinsky.
RMA, PMG, “Musicians for a Better Administration” – you just couldn’t
abide by the rules yet again.

Seems to me the Committee is a forum to avoid being blackballed for work
in this town. The Committee provides an even playing field. No activity is
hidden where everyone can speak his piece!

– The RMA-Elite have repeatedly called “rank-and-file” members “hobbyists” –
as if RMA is the only entity that can play their instruments.
– The RMA-Elite justification for their selfish attitude is “this Union is going
downhill and will dissolve in three years.” – Except they’ve been repeating
this mantra for at least 15 years.

Sorry, guys, repeating it over and over doesn’t make it true. It just keeps the
same old song droning on and on. Our Union is stronger than ever, NO
thanks to you!

Just for the record, David Schubach WON election as Vice President of our
Union – twice. And exposed a huge practice of mismanagement, corruption, etc.
The only reason he lost his latest bids: RMA members were threatened with
being “blackballed” for work in Los Angeles if they didn’t show up and vote
against him.
(as opposed to everyone else, who showed up and voted because WE FEEL LIKE

“Every one of their claims should be examined and questioned.” – they’ve asked
for specifics from the critics several times. When the charges came from the RMA,
when they came from Serena, when they came from Leslie, even, if memory serves, when the critic was the other-side-of-the-coin-guy. To date, I’ve never seen any of
those critics respond.
They never do it. Ask yourself why.

YOU just shot yourselves in the foot… again. Because you won’t come forward
with any proof at all – because the committee has been proven right!!

The Committee has never “disrupted the flow of business” – just exposed the CORRUPTION of business and violations of Bylaws in this Administration.
And hopefully they will continue to do so.If you don’t like it, stop committing the

David Schubach insisted that this Administration change and stop favoring one
small minority over another.

He insisted on more transparency in our elected Officers. He exposed a lot of
activities that others would prefer to be left in the dark. These are good things,
not bad things.
“Didn’t get along with Officers and staff?” You mean wouldn’t GO ALONG
with the status quo of the corruption in this Administration. And he still won’t.

Readers, now you see the dark underbelly of this manipulation. Twenty Members
signed this email below, including at least one of the founders of the PMG, the
RMA renegade organization.

The rest of us each have one vote. Are you going to allow this minority to continue
to sabotage our Union?

Fight back! Take back our Union! Vote for David Schubach for Secretary and
restore accountability to the majority of the Membership!


please spread the word – Lashinsky is part of the cartel – we have no chance if she gets in



Hello ________,
Welcome to the bottom…Local 47 administration in LA, eat my shorts. The
reason New Era is having trouble is the same reason a contractor would have
trouble if they belonged to the union. It’s because of the RMA & Local 47’s
successful program of intimidation to keep work for the few. They see the end
coming which is why they formed PMG. Many of the Seattle players are former
RMA members who have already bailed (betcha didn’t know that, did ya) Why
not go after those nasty turncoats? Who first went to Seattle in the 90’s? Who first
went to Prague in the 80’s? It’s all your own people, RMA aka PMG! And you want
me to trust you. It’s okay to do a dark date if the union agrees to turn a blind eye.
But don’t do it on the up n’ up. It should be obvious to any intelligent life that most
Beck objectors would rather be union members if they thought it would do them
any good. Yes folks, let’s talk about loyalty and doing the right thing……and who
is breaking the law (moral or otherwise), and how that is justifiable. Lou Levy,
(this guy is making $) where are you? Come and join the forum. Go on record with
your expert legal opinion. Or your opinion. You know, free speech and all that. We
are all waiting with baited breath.



As was stated earlier., the stakes on Monday are clear. We can continue the reform or
fall behind. The only intimidation you should feel when you vote is your own good conscience. And if enough (many hundreds!) of us turn out, the voice of the Local
will be an honest one, beyond intimidation by any minority. But if your vote turns
out to be the one that could have made a difference, but was absent, don’t complain
to us if you don’t like the result.



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