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Transit strikes suck

Where's Ronald Reagan when you need him? New York's transit workers have illegally gone on strike.

If my liberal, Democratic wife is any barometer, I doubt they'll have much sympathy from the public -- she is pissed.

I can't really blame her, either. The city is so FUBAR that the fucked-upness radiated out at least to Hoboken and Weehawken, screwing with my commute as well.

Still, we both have it relatively easy compared to many. Quite a few of my friends are currently schlepping across the Brooklyn Bridge, freezing their nuts off in single-digit wind chills. At [insert generic, non-offensive holiday her]-time, no less.

And why? Because a bunch of whiny, entitled union members think $60K a year and 8% raises are insufficient compensation for people with high school educations to "drive" an electric train that steers itself.

Man, if I were a blue collar worker who earned $10 an hour doing back-breaking labor, and had my working day lengthened and complicated by these spoiled, petulant assholes? I'd be ready to throttle someone.


At the start the TWU claimed the fight was really over "disciplinary practices," but it turns out to be pensions. The MTA supposedly now carries a $1 Billion pension liabilty forward due to the 25/55 pension, where a worker can collect halph pay after 25 years, at age 55.

I understand that the MTA initially wanted the retirement aged upped to 62, but gave up on that, and made a final offer of 4%, 6% & 3 1/2% raises over three years, asking only that new hires pay 6% into the pension fund.

For Goodness sake...

Why are you so against union workers?

You make it sound like $60K is a lot of money. You can hardly make it on that kind of salary in the NYC area.

What do you, and by extension your conservative brethren, want? The end of the middle class? Well, that's where we're headed and if we get there it won't be pretty.

We're the richest country in the world and some of our citizens live in near third world poverty.

Shame on you conservatives.

The contract they refused, over 10% in raises, an extra paid holiday (MLK Day) a year, in exchange for new hires having to pay 6% of their pensions for the first ten years, was (1) looks like a very fair contract and (2) very probably is the best offer they're going to get.

The MTA now holds a $1 BILLION in pension liabilities. That's what drove GM into having had to lay off 30,000 workers and restructure its North American operations and it could lead to insolvency in many Municipal areas as well.

For the record, the Uniformed force already pays into their pension system and will probably have to pay for more of it, in the future.

And for the record, $60K is base, without any OT, same for cops and firefighters (a slightly higher base pay), but almost all those workers make over $750K/year with OT and other incidentals factored in.

A strike, especially an ILLEGAL one should be a last resort and the contract they rebuffed shows this wasn't a last resort by any means.

Even Local 100s parent Union has urged them not to continue with this wildcat strike.

Ooops! How'd that extra zero get in there?

"And for the record, $60K is base, without any OT, same for cops and firefighters (a slightly higher base pay), but almost all those workers make over $750K/year with OT and other incidentals factored in," that LAST LINE should read, "$75K/year (of course) with OT..."

You can argue that even that, That's still not enough to live well in NYC," but it's in line with other Municipal workers and more than many who work in NYC earn.

Thanks for the clarification, JMK. I was about to say those compensation packages have really gotten out of hand.

It's amazing what whiners these TW are...imagine if they had a job with zero-stability and no security...some people actually have jobs where they find out they are unemployed while on the way to work...they tune into their radio station where the are employed and their format has flipped...or worse, upon arrival, all their belongings are in a box next to a security guard...unions for the most part make me sick and are completely unrealistic as to how the real world works...

Class warfare, conservative style...

Trash the working man and woman. Make it sound like they're not entitled to a fair, living wage. Make sound like they're not entitled to decent healthcare or a decent retirement.

For shame...

Just wait, we're taking down names, when the revolution comes we'll remember.

Bob, the "working man's" biggest problem today was that he couldn't *get* to work.

"Class warfare, conservative style...

Trash the working man and woman. Make it sound like they're not entitled to a fair, living wage. Make sound like they're not entitled to decent healthcare or a decent retirement.

For shame...

Just wait, we're taking down names, when the revolution comes we'll remember." (Bob)

This is mindless drivel on your part Bob.

There is already an agreement over wages - the TWU acknowledges that the 11% over three years offered by the MTA is generous, they also get another paid Holiday each year (as if these folks need another Holiday)...the two sticking points are over disciplinary actions and pension contributions. Teh MTA has offered an outside consulting agency to come in and overhaul their disciplinary process.

The MTA has a $1 BILLION pension liability and NEEDS its workers to buck up and help pay some of the costs of that. The Uniformed force already pays into their pensions. I believe teachers do, as well.

Municipalities can and do go bankrupt, just as do large Corporations and when a City goes into "receivership," it is run by a conglomerate of banks and insurance companies....and rightly so. In those cases, someone needs to be the grown-up and make things right for the taxpayer/customer and obviously the politicians and the Union leaders can't be trusted.

Same with Chrysler, in the 1970s and GM today, both companies faced a similar problem - skyrocketing labor costs. Now there is only one right stance for any business to take and that is that their primary allegiance is to the consumer, their secondary allegiance is to the consumer...and so is their third.

Customers want higher quality cars at lower prices and they don't really care how GM, Ford or Chrysler effects that. In short, when I'm buying a car, I don't really care what an auto worker gets paid...no consumer does, if they consider that at all, they rightly consider high labor costs a net negative, as far as purchase price goes.

Same with Municipalities - taxpayers rightly want more bang for their buck. They want school teachers working longer hours, Police and Fire Departments doing more with less and other Municipal workers the same.

The MTA hasn't lowered the salaries of new hires the way the City of NY did with new hire cops and firefighters (starting pay is $25K/year for Cops & Firemen in NYC beginning in 2006), they merely asked that the new hire transit workers pay 5% into their pensions for their first ten years on the job.

F the TWU's Local 100!

Their own parent Union the TWU International disavowed the strike and encouraged the workers to go back to work.

Stop being a dope Bob. Read up on the issues and then wake up and realize that its Local 100 that's in the wrong here....completely and utterly in the wrong.

JMK, you're as short sighted as you are long winded...

What we have is a problem of worker insecurity. Pensions and healthcare count for more than wages when it comes to labor negotiations. In fact the transit workers offered to come back to work if the MTA would pull pension reductions off the table.

This country can't go down this path for long. Until we make retirement and healthcare a national priority our country will continue it's decent into third worldism.

What we need is a populace assured of a decent retirement and access to decent healthcare. What we have instead is companies like GM spending so much on employee benefits that they can no longer compete with companies from countries like Japan and Germany; countries where workers are treated decently, not exploited.

What ends up happening is that not only do workers lose their jobs, as non-competative companies fold, they end up losing their pensions and access to decent healthcare.

What we need is good, comprehensive national healthcare; what we need is strenghtened, not weakened social security. Take the burden away from individual companies and place it on society as a whole.

The current idiotic status quo is purpetuated by conservative asses like yourself.

Oh BTW, Merry Christmas.

Publically funded pensions and universal healthcare have resulted in the abysmal economies of Europe, Bob. Germany is moving away from that model to a more "Americanized" model as we speak.

France, Sweden, Belgium and other nations that are still trying to maintain that are racked with 12% to 15% unemployment and horrific levels of taxation.

There are NO/zero private sector pensions that rival the likes of the TWU's...and there shouldn't be. Companies are NOT in business to employ workers and create jobs, they're in business solely to provide goods and services to customers and make profits for their investors.

Moreover, as I said earlier, even in NYC, virtually every other Municipal workforce already pay into their pensions and the TWU's Local 100's pension program has resulted in a $1 BILLION liability for the MTA.

GM had the same problem ($5,000 of each car was dedicated to pension and health care costs) and recently had to lay off over 30,000 workers to get profitable again. They're running leaner now and their prospects for 2006 look much better. That's all that's important, GM's fiscal future. Workers come in a distant third behind (1) profitablity and (2) dedication to the whims of the consumer.

That's just the way things are, Bob.

Hey! Gravity can be a problem too, but it's something we all have to live and deal with.

The TWU's pension system is even more stressed than that of either the PBA, or UFA, which include, half pay retirement after twenty years of service (at any age) and for disability pensions - 3/4's of one's salary, tax free for the rest of one's life.

How so?

Because (1) the uniformed force has long paid into that pension system and (2) those disability pensions are partly funded via the State & Federal government.

There is little doubt that the City of NY will ask other Municipal Unions to fund even more of their own pensions down the line, otherwise, NYC will eventually face a fiscal insolvency like it did back in 1975 and wind up with a consortium of banks and insurance companies controlling the City's purse strings.

TWU Local 100 was dead wrong on this one.

They were offered a contract that was in the ballpark of what the Union initially set out to get (an 11% wage increase over 3 years, an extra paid holiday per year, etc). They could have either continued trying to negotiate, or accepted binding arbitration, but violating the Taylor Law was not a viable option.

Even their parent Union, TWU International had advised against striking and urged Local 100 members to go back to work since Tuesday.

As it turns out, Local 100 ended the illegal strike this afternoon, only to go back to negotiating and without the pension issue being taken off the table. Moreover, Local 100 has racked up about $3 million in fines and the striking workers will now lose six days pay for this three day strike.

Two points in response:


Regarding social benefits in enlightened countries, such as Sweden and Finland; their high taxes provide considerably more to their citizens than the lower taxes we pay. When you add in the cost of private health insurance, which we pay, the costs are much the same but with big differences. We can lose our health insurance with the loss of a job, they don't; we can lose our health insurance if we have a major illness since the insurance companies will no longer want the risk, they can't.

Insurance companies in this country spend some 12 to 15% of their budgets on administrative costs, much of which is used to find ways of denying benefits to their participants. In Sweden and Finland half that amount is spent on administrative costs.

The end result is greater access to healthcare for everyone, no dependance on emergency rooms as the healthcare of last resort, lower death rates among infants, longer life expectancy and no constant fear of losing access to decent healthcare.

Face it, when it comes to healthcare, our systems sucks.


The basis for your argument against the transit workers is that others are getting paid less and have lower benefits. That is nothing but class warfare. You want to tear down those that have a chance to make nto the middle class.

If you were a blue collar worker making $10 an hour you might be able to get better pay where you are now if you had the opportunity to apply for a better job at the MTA. Supply and demand, right?

Wrong on both counts Bob and I'll show you why;

First, the cost of the higher taxes in Europe is a stagnant economy. That stagnant economy creates poverty, mental health problems and makes the climate rife for Civil unrest.

Sure there are other factors, like their inane statutes that make it virtually impossible for businesses to fire less competant workers. That kind of "job security" has also contributed to killing many European economies.

The fact is, just as gravity dictates that all objects must fall downward, instead of up, the economic equivalent of gravity ststes that when you burden productivity with higher income taxes, corporate taxes and transfer taxes (Cap Gains taxes, etc) you get less of the thing you burden, which in that case is productivity.

For better or worse, and I can argue both sides, the Democrats have foisted an expanded GATT & introduced NAFTA on the American economy and in so doing, have made "globalism" the economic order of the day. GATT was expanded in 1991 (under the auspices of a Democratic controlled House & Senate) and NAFTA was introduced in January of 1994 with the Dems in control of Congress and Bill Clinton in the White House.

The global economy forces American businesses to compete with others around the world. If our environmental constraints, health care costs and pensions create a competitive disadvantage (which, at the current time, they do), then America loses jobs and there exists a profound and constant downward pressure on American wage rates.

Socialism, even as an ideal, is dead.

ALL Socialism is based on coercion and theft - government must force those they deem as "haves" to either forfeit their property (real Socialism abolishes private property) and also support those deeemed as "have nots."

The basis for that, is the corrosive belief that people should be valued for their being people and not for the contributions they make as individuals. There is no dictum more antithetical to life, liberty and the pursuit of property than that.

Moreover, there is no real history of the American Democratic Party supporting the Socialist ideal. That is an unfortunate and relatively new phenomenon.

My favorite Democrat of all time was RFK, a rabid anti-Communist, more rabid than either Joe McCarthy or Roy Cohn. A man who was obsessed with "Communist influence over Labor Unions, and in various Civil Rights organizations" and sought to expunge such people from the American landscape.

As to your second point, the argument I've made here is the MTA's $1 BILLION paension liability, not the fact that these worker's already make far more than the average New Yorker does (which of course they do), is what's at the heart of the impasse between Local 100 & the MTA.

No, if my argument against the strike was over their rate of pay, I'd have opposed the 11% pay increase over 3 years, which was generously offered by the MTA, and I assure you, you won't find anything close to that sentiment in anything I posted here.

The MTA faces the SAME problem that GM recently faced, worker pensions and health care costs were driving that company into receivership, just as they are heading the MTA toward insolvency.

The MTA, like GM should have its customers as its FIRST, SECOND and THIRD priorities. Workers are a very distant fourth or fifth.

GM & the UAW couldn't reach an amicable accord on reducing current pension and health care costs, so GM HAD TO lay off 30,000 employees, downsize the operation a little, in order to become more competitive and profitable.

The MTA must get its pension costs under control. The Local 100 workers are among the only workers who pay so little into their pensions in NYC and the "final offer" rejected by Local 100 before their illegal strike didn't even demand that current workers pay more into their pensions, only that new hires do!

It was over workers who aren't even Local 100 members yet, that Local 100 called this illegal strike - costing the Union about $3 million in fines and each worker 6 days pay for a 3 day strike.

Local 100 didn't just hurt all those daily commuters and all those small businesses in NYC that took a beating this week before Chritmas, it hurt its own members as well.

Wow, how can you be so wrong on so many counts?

Let's look at your first statement:

"First, the cost of the higher taxes in Europe is a stagnant economy."

Finland's and Sweden's economies are far from stagnant. Finland is, by some measures, in better shape than the U.S. despite their 'socialism'. (More than likely, because of it.)

Hell, at least Finland's economy is running a surplus. Can the U.S say that?

As for poverty; have you ever been to either Sweden or Finland? I have, numerous times. There is NO poverty, such as exists in this country.

You very first statement is total BS.

Neither Sweden nor Finland have anything close to real Socialism, Bob.

They have Corporatism, just like the U.S. does.

Corporations like Volvo and Erickson are privately owned and publically traded.

Sure, they have a larger social/welfare bureaucracy and a workforce, in which many people can not "afford to work," more than six months out of the year, but the Scandanavian countries also have high rates of depression, high unemployment and a huge intrusive government bureaucracy that's spurred the growth of Liberatrian movements. In Sweden the Freedom Party (a Libertarian Party) is the fastest growing political Party in that country.

Again, Socialism itself is based on coercion and theft. The abolition of private property is the abolition of liberty. That's probably why ALL European countries are Corporatist (private property is alive and well, and so are privately held companies), despite their huge, wasteful and cumbersome public welfare bureaucracies.

Now, as to that illegal transit strike, TWU Local 100 was dead wrong. Striking for "the unborn" is insane! Active members wil now lose six days pay, for the three days they were out, for future Local 100 members...folks who haven't paid a dime's worth of dues to Local 100.

The MTA cannot maintain its current pension liability and demanding that new hires pay a little more into their pensions to defray the costs, doesn't seem too much to ask.

Worse yet, Local 100 struck for three days and came back without a contract and with Pataki crowing about the fines levied by the courts (the $3 MILLION the Union faces and the 2 days pay for each day out, each worker faces) are not going to be bargained away, or excused.

Bottomline, Roger Toussaint shit the bed. He was offered a fair deal - 11% wage hikes over the next three years, an extra paid holiday each year, an independent entity to overhaul the MTA's disciplinary system and new hires had to pay another 3% into their pensions over the first ten years of their employment, in an age when many private sector companies are abandoning pension systems in favor of 457s and 401K's.

They'd gotten as much as they were going to get from the MTA and pushing them on this very minimal pension relief was just plain dumb.

"Neither Sweden nor Finland have anything close to real Socialism, Bob.

They have Corporatism, just like the U.S. does."

Then you'd have no problem adopting a system of social programs like they have?

Great, now we can agree on something.

Merry Christmas!

"They have Corporatism, just like the U.S. does."

Then you'd have no problem adopting a system of social programs like they have?

Great, now we can agree on something."

Not really.

I don't think America is capable of adopting many of the more restrictive side of the massive welfare state.

Every government that seeks to guarantee an income and take care of the people must also have the power to force people into doing whatever work must be done, as well as incredibly intrusive. Even in relatively homogenous nations like Finland, Sweden, Japan and Denmark, there is always the serius concern over welfare fraud. That requires an incredible amount of intrusiveness.

Quid pro quo. When the State "takes care of people," it must also be ablle, in return, to comtrol them. To, in effect, "draft them: into less desirable work, to have complete access to their banking and purchasing records to make sure they aren't "getting more than their fair share," etc.

The reason real socialism (government "owning" and managing all industry) can't work, is largely because bearucrats are, by nature, NOT at all entrepreneurial. Governments always and everywhere, do a terrible job of running business.

That's why Corporatism, is a working compromise. Goverenment lets those who CAN, do and own, and government gets its cut, but government also serves those established business's best interests by regulating new competition, new start-ups and unfortunately, all too often, new ideas, out of the marketplace.

Right now, American business no longer wants any part of the health care and pension burdens previously thrust upon it and as a result we may well eventually see some of the things that Europeans suffer under, such as the rationed care of "universal health care" and the highly intrusive welfare state.

"Right now, American business no longer wants any part of the health care and pension burdens previously thrust upon it and as a result we may well eventually see some of the things that Europeans suffer under, such as the rationed care of "universal health care" and the highly intrusive welfare state."

What you see as 'suffering' I see as a blessing.

There is no blessing that comes with the rationed health care that ALL "socialized medicine" or "universal health care" programs come with.

Nor is there any blessings of the necessary and ultimately mandated intrusions of the welfare state.

Huge disparities between various skill sets, for instance the $8 million/year plastic surgeon and the $5 million/year patent lawyer versus the $12/hour janitor and the $18/hour bus driver indicates a very storng economy, because strong economies reward difficult, hard to atain and master skills far more than they do ones that are plentiful and more mundane.

If the economy were indeed a fixed pie, with only so much much money/prosperity available, then one could make the Malthusian argument that these folks (the Patent Lawyer and the Plastic Surgeon) are "taking too much of that fixed pie and leaving too little for everyone else."

Thankfully and rightfully, the Malthusian concept has long been discredited. It is a canard. The economy is not fixed or static, it's a dynamic, fluid mechanism, that is expanded when new/profitable ideas and rare and hard to master skills are highly rewarded and contracts when we seek to "equalize" the distribution of wealth via any form of transfer program.

I'll bite on two of your points:


If socialized medicine is so bad why do countries with it (every other industrialized country in the world) have lower infant mortality and longer life expectancy. It's clear to anyone but a blinded conservative that we're doing something wrong.


I don't think there are many people that would begrudge the talented their wealth (although, I might begrudge some of those simply born into wealth). The problem is driving down the incomes of the lowest on the ladder (the least talented, if you will) to the point where they live in poverty. If they have nothing, they have nothing to lose; that's when the real problems start.

Remember the race riots of the '60s? Your short sighted attitude, shared by most conservatives, invites the economic riots of the '20s. Remember, you heard it from me first.

There IS "something wrong" with our current health care system. We've moved away from physician-oriented health care and closer, maybe half way to socialized medicine, with HMOs, managed by acountants, instead of doctors, delivering the bulk of America's health care.

The great Milton Friedman was right, if medicine were left to completely market based forces, a doctor could charge no more than the public could bear and personalized (doctor-driven) medicine would be no more expensive now (adjusted for inflation, etc), then doctor vists were, fifty years ago, when doctors charged $15 to $25 per visit and made house calls.

Every system of universal health care "rations" health care, limiting the number of visits that any inidividual (no matter how ill) can make to a doctor each year and limiting access to major procedures to "those they think will get the longest benefit."

Rationed care is terrible and one of the reasons that most Canadians who can, flee across the border to get health care here, were it isn't rationed.

As to your second point about "poverty driven riots or revolts, well, no one ever revolts or riots over poverty. That's why no place on earth witnessed Marx's predicted "worker's revolution." George Bernard Shaw saw this, knew the reasons and correctly surmised that in every society, such revolutions must be led by the educated upper middle class, the way they were in Russia by the various "intellectuals." That's why G B Shaw started the Fabian Socialist society and also why Stalin, himself a Socialist, like Mao and Hitler and Castro and Pol Pot, etc got right what most of the other socialist tyrants got wrong - the group one must target first, and with even more vigor that the property owners ("the bourgoisie"), is the intellectuals. Stalin forced the sons and daughters of college professors and other intellectuals into the mines and other such jobs and put the children of laborers into college, in an effort to thwart what Shaw saw as the real route to "Marx's utopia."

Today, in America, there is no "Republican" or "governmental" plan to reduce the wages of the lowest skilled workers in America. None at all.

The effects of globalism (Free Trade instead of Fair Trade, the expansion of GATT and the intro of NAFTA), along with massive legal and illegal immigration into the United States has put a profound downward pressure on all wage rates, most especially the lowest.

Now there's no doubt that most Republicans support that, but apparently so do many, if not most Democrats, as GATT was expanded in 1991 under the auspices of Tip O'Neill's, Democrat controlled Congress and NAFTA was passed in January of 1994 with hte Dems still in control of the House and Bill Clinton and Al Gore in the White House.

The riots/civil unrest of the 1960s were due to racial strife (the lingering effects of segregation and perceived police brutality) and the assassination of MLK, which was the trigger for the worst violence of the late sixties, and opposition to Vietnam, the violence of which (ie Kent State) was largely confined to College Campuses.

There was no "workers" or "poor people's" revolt or riot during that period.

Not that the recent Transit strike, the initiator of this discussion, had anything to do with underpaid workers.

NYC’s transit workers already earn more that its cops and firemen (they, like sanitation and all other city workers earned only 70% of what its cops and firemen got until the Lindsey administration) and pay less into their pensions. The transit workers who went on strike earn $35,000/year to start and nearly $100,000/year with OT, night differential, holiday pay, etc at First Grade. By comparison, cops and firemen in NYC now earn $25,000/year to start and about $80K (going up to about $92K with the new contract, now being ratified) and that’s also with OT, night differential, holiday pay, etc, at First Grade.

THESE are NOT underpaid workers.

In fact, the TWU Local 100 foolishly struck over “the unborn” (workers not even hired yet) as the MTA wasn’t demanding any increase in pension payments from current members, only another 3% per year over the first ten years from new hires after 2006!

Yes globalism, Free Trade and massive immigration have put a profound downward pressure on wage rates in America, BUT the Democrats ARE actually worse and far more perverse than Republicans on the immigration issue. At least the GOP supports things like the “guest workers programs” etc because they nakedly support cheaper labor, while the Dems cynically support a more open immigration under the erroneous assumption that more poor immigrants means more Dem votes. The bulk of the very Catholic Hispanic immigrants tend to be more socially Conservative...a bad omen for the Democrats, of which I remain one.

And BOTH major Parties have supported gloablism and Free Trade, as I’ve shown that two consecutive Democrat controlled Congresses pushed through the expansion of GATT and the intro of NAFTA.

Those who’ve opposed the illegal transit strike and now support the heavy punitive fines imposed by the courts do not run along any partisan political lines. Those that oppose the illegal walk-out (well over 80%) tend to cross Party lines and run along those most informed on the issue, while those few who support it and champion the plight of the transit workers, tend to not fully understand the issue, which has little or nothing to do with wage rates, but pension contributions…for the “unborn”/yet-to-be-hired transit workers.


Merry Christmas to all. I'm heading to work this afternoon. Comes with the territory. It's my 20th Christmas in the FDNY and I can count on one hand (three fingers, I'm pretty sure) the times I've been off both Christmas Eve and Christmas. I prefer Christmas Eve and have swapped tours to give up Christmas for the Eve a number of times in the past. I had a great Christmas Eve and even though I'll miss the family Christmas, I've spoken to everyone and that's good. In a way, it expands the season a bit, into the following week, catching up with everyone.

I hope everyone here enjoyed their Holidays as well.

"As to your second point about "poverty driven riots or revolts, well, no one ever revolts or riots over poverty."

On the contrary, it's always economics that sparks a revolution.

If economics sparked revolutions, then all peoples EVERYWHERE would be revolting AGAINST the failed policies of socialism/"the government controlled economy" and for more individual liberty (a/k/a personal responsibility), increased opportunity and greater prosperity that only freer markets can bring.

Sadly, that rarely happens, although there's NEVER anywhere been a true "worker's movement in favor of Socialism," either.

In Nicaragua, that countries rebels/Contras ("freedom fighters") were supported by a vast majority of the population over the violently imperious, Soviet-backed, and Socialistic Sandinistas.

Same in Chile, the Chilean people overwhelimngly supported the Free Market reforms enacted by Pinochet's "Economics Czar" (Milton Friedman) and opposed the Socialist/Communist rebels that flooded that country from elsewhere and who were also backed by the Soviets, along with some disgracefully misguided Americans.

In America, the riots of the 1960s weren't motivated by economics at all, they were engaged in, primarily by misguided "anti-war" whites and thuggish, inner city blacks, the latter who saw the killing of MLK as an excuse/trigger to burn down their own neighborhoods, victimizing their hard-working and striving neighbors most of all.

There's no way to be a Liberal and support the rioters of the 1960s and overpaid workers today, who strike over pension contributions to be paid by yet unhired, or "future workers," those are NOT Liberal icons, by any stretch of the imagination...unless the likes of Michael Moore, Cindy Sheehan and Rhandi Rhodes have suddenly become "mainstream American Liberals," instead of the "anti-American, radicals most folks seem to think they are.


Ugggh....but at what a price!

The TWU's Local 100 Executive Board reportedly approved a tentative contract last night (pending membership approval) that DID bargain away the pension increase for new hires, in exchange for a 1.5% payout from ALL members (current & future) into their health insurance.

They still get the same 11% raise offered before and the extra paid holiday per year, but no relief from the $3 million in fines Local 100 was socked with, nor the 6 days pay for the three days the workers struck.

Was that worth the strike?!

With the last offer, no current Local 100 members paid anything more into their pensions, or health care, but now, all current members and all new hires must pay 1.5% of their salaries into their health insurance.

Toussaint and the Local 100 Board should've given up the unborn. They work for their Union MEMBERS, and those yet to be hired are NOT Union members.

So, this contract is a royal screwing for the current, active members of Local 100. Instead of the same raise and that extra holiday per year and no increased payouts, they now get the same raise, that same extra holiday and pay 1.5% of their salaries into their health insurance...AND lose six days pay for their illegal walk-out, as a kicker.

If TWU Local 100 is smart, they'll vote out every member of that Executive Board who voted in favor of this strike. That group put the concerns of non-Union members ("the unborn," or yet to be hired)) ahead of the current, active Union Members who pay their dues and allow these Board Members to live large at their expense.

See the details:


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