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Tags 2020 elections , biden , Biden administration , Biden controversies , joe biden , Kamala Harris , sucks

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Old 27th November 2022, 03:52 PM   #961
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Whenever Republicans say they are doing something to protect children you know they are up to something nefarious.

Please Republicans, embrace the 21st 19th century already!
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Old 30th November 2022, 09:41 AM   #962
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Kinda weird:

5 Cars rented by Biden’s security detail in Nantuket burst into flame a day after leaving.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...8H0JSa9Kfhnfts
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Old 30th November 2022, 12:09 PM   #963
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https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-...rail-shutdown/

Originally Posted by POTUS

As a proud pro-labor President, I am reluctant to override the ratification procedures and the views of those who voted against the agreement. But in this case – where the economic impact of a shutdown would hurt millions of other working people and families – I believe Congress must use its powers to adopt this deal.
He calls himself pro-labor in a statement where he's going to stick it to a union because they have serious leverage in bargaining. Which is sadly quite on brand for the Democratic Party.

Originally Posted by POTUS
The agreement was reached in good faith by both sides.

To this end misconstrues a rejected tentative agreement as an agreement, making the claim that a majority of the unions approved that agreement when the unions representing a majority of workers did not. Which is spectacularly dishonest. Which implies the union is both greedy and went back on their word

Originally Posted by himagain
The deal provides a historic 24% pay raise for rail workers. It provides improved health care benefits. And it provides the ability of operating craft workers to take unscheduled leave for medical needs.
I'm searching for where he mentions the record profits raked in by the railroads but I guess an oversight. Not to mention that he's touting "being able to go to the doctor without scheduling it in advance" as a huge deal. It may seem to read like this is talking about paid sick days, but it isn't.

He's attempting to claim some sort of middle ground in forcing an "agreement" that's acceptable to the railroad but not the union. Calling it a "deal" when it is forced by the government is offensive, but I guess he'll keep the trains running on time.

(I just got a NYT news flash that uses the phrase "imposing a labor agreement" which isn't Orwellian at all)

Moral and policy issues aside, punting the "we care about workers" to the GOP isn't going to go well given the state of the electoral college map and the need to hold states that still somehow have significant numbers of union Democrats.

Originally Posted by sameguy

Let me be clear: a rail shutdown would devastate our economy. Without freight rail, many U.S. industries would shut down. My economic advisors report that as many as 765,000 Americans – many union workers themselves – could be put out of work in the first two weeks alone. Communities could lose access to chemicals necessary to ensure clean drinking water. Farms and ranches across the country could be unable to feed their livestock.
Sounds like the workers are really important and maybe just as cost effective to force the railroads to capitulate to all union demands. Unless in this labor market you can replace everyone on short notice without the same sort of collapse due to loss of expertise. A wildcat walkout probably isn't happening here but that sort of thing is coming at some point if they keep effing around like this.

I'm out on Biden. He goes in the bin with Bloomberg as Democrats I'm never voting for. I couldn't make up a more infuriating statement than this if I tried. I can and will yield on a lot of things in the cause of Republicans Are Evil And Must Be Stopped. This goes too far.

Honestly, I don't care as much about what they are doing, which to be clear is abhorrent but arguably economically prudent, but the way this statement is written makes me want to throw my computer out the window and re-register Mountain Party. It such an insult.

I mean:

Originally Posted by not exactly Eugene Debs
But at this critical moment for our economy, in the holiday season, we cannot let our strongly held conviction for better outcomes for workers deny workers the benefits of the bargain they reached...
(emphasis added)

Just straight union busting here. The union rejected this agreement and he's driving a wedge claiming he's honoring the workers by disregarding the union.
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Old 30th November 2022, 12:26 PM   #964
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
Just straight union busting here. The union rejected this agreement and he's driving a wedge claiming he's honoring the workers by disregarding the union.
Yeah... I'm not out on Biden overall, but I'm certainly not happy about his handling of this issue so far. Even so, here's a little more information on what's going on there. The workers may get paid sick leave in the end, but that's likely up to republicans.
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Old 30th November 2022, 12:36 PM   #965
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
....
Just straight union busting here. The union rejected this agreement and he's driving a wedge claiming he's honoring the workers by disregarding the union.
Not so fast. There is no "the" union. Twelve unions had to approve the contract. Four didn't, but eight did. Should those four invalidate the votes of the other eight? More important, should those four be able to shut down the national transportation network, disrupting the delivery of essential goods, including food, gasoline and heating oil in the middle of winter? Yeah, the rail workers are getting screwed. But they don't get to screw the whole country.

And Congress is now considering a bill that would require the railroads to provide sick leave. So maybe the unions aren't getting busted after all.

Last edited by Bob001; 30th November 2022 at 12:38 PM.
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Old 30th November 2022, 12:56 PM   #966
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
Not so fast. There is no "the" union. Twelve unions had to approve the contract. Four didn't, but eight did. Should those four invalidate the votes of the other eight? More important, should those four be able to shut down the national transportation network, disrupting the delivery of essential goods, including food, gasoline and heating oil in the middle of winter? Yeah, the rail workers are getting screwed. But they don't get to screw the whole country.
Q: Did the union approve the contract under their rules?

A: No.

The number of people in these sub-unions are not consistent and the unions that rejected this make up a majority of the membership. Bringing up this 8-4 split is, again, misleading union busting rhetoric that the union is somehow frustrating it's membership. It's always the standard wedge used by capital and their minions to break worker solidarity. By implying that the unions are a hinderance and ownership would be much nicer if they were out of the way is in terms of labor the Big Lie.



I honestly would love it if I could be talked down from my smoldering rage about just how dishonest and terrible Biden's statement is, but the more I try to be objective the more I start feeling I'm maybe not mad enough...

Quote:



And Congress is now considering a bill that would require the railroads to provide sick leave. So maybe the unions aren't getting busted after all.
It required a whole day last I checked, and some members of congress were pushing for seven. There is the matter of fine print and management abuses where this sort of thing only exists on paper though...

Which, again, that this is held out as significant just shows how bad the labor situation has gotten in the US.
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Old 30th November 2022, 01:21 PM   #967
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Love him or hate him, at least Danny Devito stepped up to the plate on the right side of this one.

From Newsweek via MSN.

"No Joe, you’re supposed to help the railroad workers… you got it backwards. A handful of sick days c’mon! Workers of the world unite!"

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...f0ba44785a0ad7
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Old 30th November 2022, 01:23 PM   #968
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
.....
Which, again, that this is held out as significant just shows how bad the labor situation has gotten in the US.
Yeah, organized labor has become weaker ever since Reagan broke the air controllers' strike. But most Americans who don't belong to unions -- and that would be most Americans -- will have no sympathy for a crowd that just won a 24% pay raise and other benefits and still threaten to shut down the national economy. The unions set the deadline. They could continue to negotiate, and work to increase their support among legislators and consumers who could pressure the railroads. Most people, when asked, think the workers should get sick days. But if there's a strike and consumers can't get gas and fuel oil, they'll know who to blame. And it won't be management.
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Old 30th November 2022, 03:25 PM   #969
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
Yeah, organized labor has become weaker ever since Reagan broke the air controllers' strike. But most Americans who don't belong to unions -- and that would be most Americans -- will have no sympathy for a crowd that just won a 24% pay raise and other benefits and still threaten to shut down the national economy. The unions set the deadline. They could continue to negotiate, and work to increase their support among legislators and consumers who could pressure the railroads. Most people, when asked, think the workers should get sick days. But if there's a strike and consumers can't get gas and fuel oil, they'll know who to blame. And it won't be management.
They are told who to blame. The fact that this narrative is humored much less accepted is a problem created by what amounts to bipartisan hostility to the interests of working people.

Biden going into the 24% raise without addressing the profits of the railroads is unforgivable corporate propagandizing. It's a meaningless statistic without reference to specifics. Biden is demonizing labor here by dressing the offer up in a way that makes them look unreasonable. I await the same scrutiny of companies that have raised their prices in the last two years. Free market I guess.

The Democratic Party is the ones that should be serving the unions. The supposed pro labor party, and it's hard to type that first clause without rolling my eyes so far that I can see my brain.

The union has to set a deadline. That's how strikes work. This isn't hippie BS. They pay workers or the workers walk and the business suffers. Never setting a deadline forfeits leverage.

Asking for crap never works. Whether it be labor or civil rights or any reform. Trouble must be made and pain must be felt or all that happens is things like:

Originally Posted by Brandon
I have pressed legislation and proposals to advance the cause of paid leave in my two years in office, and will continue to do so. Every other developed country in the world has such protections for its workers.
Maybe if the Democrats would have been more pliant and polite towards corporate interests over the last few decades we wouldn't be so far behind.

There is no opportunity to actually cause improvement that the Democrats won't squander.

To wit:

Originally Posted by CornPopWhereArtThou?
Some in Congress want to modify the deal to either improve it for labor or for management. However well-intentioned, any changes would risk delay and a debilitating shutdown.
Remember this statement during the next debt ceiling crisis and how that gets exploited for concessions. Also note the pathological both siding where he humors the idea of being explicitly anti-union.
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Old 30th November 2022, 04:49 PM   #970
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
.....
The union has to set a deadline. That's how strikes work. This isn't hippie BS. They pay workers or the workers walk and the business suffers. Never setting a deadline forfeits leverage.
.....
So to be clear, you're okay with a few thousand workers, who are probably paid more on average than a majority of working Americans, wrecking the economy and disrupting millions of lives because they didn't get everything they want? You're okay with that?

Would you be okay with the management replacing all the strikers with non-union workers? You know they can do that, too, right?
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Old 30th November 2022, 06:39 PM   #971
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
So to be clear, you're okay with a few thousand workers, who are probably paid more on average than a majority of working Americans, wrecking the economy and disrupting millions of lives because they didn't get everything they want? You're okay with that?
Pretty much, yes. Effects all overblown of course but no better way to establish labor dominance. Nothing happens without the workers and if they decide nothing happens then nothing happens.

So to be clear, you're OK with a critical business making record profits beyond the dreams of working Americans wrecking the economy and disrupting millions of lives because they refused to reward labor's part in creating same and used government to force them to work? You're okay with that?
Quote:

Would you be okay with the management replacing all the strikers with non-union workers? You know they can do that, too, right?
If they like collapse, go for it. Good luck finding those numbers of capable people in time and who are ok with being scabs. This is an excellent plan for those nostalgic of labor violence as well. I've a few uncles who are probably too old to tip over a bus full of scabs but might give it a go for old times sake.

Seriously. Bring that **** on. It would be the best way to dispel the myth of unskilled labor.
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Old 30th November 2022, 06:46 PM   #972
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In a more positive note it is refreshing to be big mad over something not written by a Judge. Biden making me more mad than Alito is quite the upset.

I'm in a weird place. I could just rent an office, hang a Trump flag and put up a Lets Go Brandon sign. and my biggest trouble would be keeping track of all the money coming in. I live in a Trump area but the bar is by and large moderate. So there's a market.

I wish I was that guy sometimes. I really do. If ignorance is bliss than MAGA has to be euphoria.
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Old 30th November 2022, 09:26 PM   #973
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"Not getting everything they want" is just more anti-union framing. The working conditions these people have been put through have been abusive to an extent that would be unimagined in most other industries. Just trying to get out of that and up to the already-not-good minimal level of worker treatment that most of the rest of us have is not greedy. It's just seeking to be treated like a people.

(And if strikes aren't allowed to cause some economic harm, then they're not allowed to be strikes at all, and then unions aren't allowed to really be unions.)
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Old 30th November 2022, 10:02 PM   #974
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
The working conditions these people have been put through have been abusive to an extent that would be unimagined in most other industries.
I think that this is worthy of being stressed further. A rail strike would definitely suck, certainly, but it would also be long past due. The fact that railroads are so important is quite decidedly NOT a defense that should be offered to excuse and accept horrible mismanagement and exploitation. The situation is the way it is because of short-sighted profiteering of the sort that absolutely should be condemned. If railroads truly are so important, though, I would be more in favor of simply nationalizing any railroad that refuses to manage decently and stop exploiting the work force like that than I would be in favor of rewarding the mismanagement. After all, the ongoing damage being done is a state of affairs that will effectively break their value anyways in the long-term because of lack of willing labor and customers.
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Old 30th November 2022, 10:10 PM   #975
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
"Not getting everything they want" is just more anti-union framing. The working conditions these people have been put through have been abusive to an extent that would be unimagined in most other industries. Just trying to get out of that and up to the already-not-good minimal level of worker treatment that most of the rest of us have is not greedy. It's just seeking to be treated like a people.
.....
I'm sure that's true. But it's a great failing of labor unions that they haven't communicated well with the broader society. Most employees of private employers don't belong to unions. They don't really know what unions are or what they do. Their primary experience of unions is when union rules keep bad teachers or cops from being fired or when their taxes go up to fund exorbitant government employee pensions. The railroad unions have been negotiating this contract for three years, but I don't recall hearing anything about it until the last couple months. If the unions had reached out to the public all along with ads and interviews about their crazy schedules, where they're on call 24 hours a day and can't take their kids to the doctor or even use the days off they're entitled to, there would have been a lot more public sympathy and support, and pressure on management to reform. Almost everybody agrees that they should get sick days and reasonable schedules. But as it is, the public now only sees the unions as an angry mob that wants to shut down the economy in the dead of winter two weeks before Christmas. Management wins.

Gee, maybe they could hire somebody who knows something about PR.
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Old 1st December 2022, 08:55 AM   #976
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
I'm sure that's true. But it's a great failing of labor unions that they haven't communicated well with the broader society. Most employees of private employers don't belong to unions. They don't really know what unions are or what they do. Their primary experience of unions is when union rules keep bad teachers or cops from being fired or when their taxes go up to fund exorbitant government employee pensions. The railroad unions have been negotiating this contract for three years, but I don't recall hearing anything about it until the last couple months.
The more sane conclusion here is that the corporate owned media is essentially operating a blackout. Working conditions are a mess and there is a ton of unionizing going on right now and the media is treating it as somewhere between a non-story and a curiosity.
Quote:
If the unions had reached out to the public all along with ads and interviews about their crazy schedules, where they're on call 24 hours a day and can't take their kids to the doctor or even use the days off they're entitled to, there would have been a lot more public sympathy and support, and pressure on management to reform.

Almost everybody agrees that they should get sick days and reasonable schedules. But as it is, the public now only sees the unions as an angry mob that wants to shut down the economy in the dead of winter two weeks before Christmas. Management wins.

Gee, maybe they could hire somebody who knows something about PR.
It's a ridiculous take on this. You have massive amounts of capital, a bipartisan hostile government, and a media carrying water for capital. Which amounts to like billions in free advertising for anti-labor forces. They can't hope to compete at that level. It was hard enough when one of the parties was an ally. Now it's impossible. When a "pro labor" president is out there spouting the anti-union rhetoric the time for talk and PR is over.

The only way to call attention to this is to just quit working. It's the only way to fully communicate and demonstrate why and how workers are essential and important. Public sentiment stoked by propaganda isn't all that important because in the end propaganda and resentment does not move a train.

They strike and get concessions and that will embolden other strikers.

They strike and the government commits atrocities and that radicalizes people.

Strikes terrify capital, and that's why they spend so many resources on propaganda demonizing unions. Based on this post it's been effective.
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Old 1st December 2022, 04:51 PM   #977
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As expected the GOP filibustered the bill to give a whole seven days of paid sick time to the workers.

Which is not to give a pass to the Dems on this. Passing legislation to stop a strike but not to force the companies to do substantially better? If you know you can't to the latter, don't do the former.
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Old 1st December 2022, 08:11 PM   #978
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
.....
The only way to call attention to this is to just quit working. It's the only way to fully communicate and demonstrate why and how workers are essential and important. Public sentiment stoked by propaganda isn't all that important because in the end propaganda and resentment does not move a train.

They strike and get concessions and that will embolden other strikers.

They strike and the government commits atrocities and that radicalizes people.

Strikes terrify capital, and that's why they spend so many resources on propaganda demonizing unions. Based on this post it's been effective.

You can rant all you want about evil "capital" like an elderly Parisian Marxist, but the plain fact is that many, many Americans eke out their livings in jobs that pay vastly less than rail workers earn, with no benefits, no job security and no paid time off for sickness or anything else. That's maybe not the way it should be, but it's the way it is. And if Starbucks baristas or Uber drivers or adjunct professors have their holidays ruined and their livelihoods wrecked so a bunch of guys making over $100 grand can get more time off, they won't be blaming "capital."

For reference:
Quote:
The railroad industry has said that average rail worker salaries will reach $110,000 by the end of the five-year deal in 2025.
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news...l-reached-ave/

I'm sure they're crying all the way to the bank.

Last edited by Bob001; 1st December 2022 at 08:21 PM.
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Old 1st December 2022, 08:22 PM   #979
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
You can rant all you want about evil "capital" like an elderly Parisian Marxist, but the plain fact is that many, many Americans eke out their livings in jobs that pay vastly less than rail workers earn, with no benefits, no job security and no paid time off for sickness or anything else. And if Starbucks baristas or Uber drivers or adjunct professors have their holidays ruined and their livelihoods wrecked so a bunch of guys making over $100 grand can get more time off, they won't be blaming "capital."

For reference:

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news...l-reached-ave/

I'm sure they're crying all the way to the bank.
Yes, and those workers should be treated better. There should be minimum standards for all workers that are superior to what we have. So what? That doesn't mean that this particular group of workers should be treated poorly.

Seven days a year of paid sick leave? Predictable work schedules and time off? Those are things they should have to fight for? That should be basic to everyone.

And frankly, if a few thousand workers going on strike is enough to cripple the US economy, those workers should probably be getting more than 111K in any case.
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Old 1st December 2022, 10:00 PM   #980
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Originally Posted by Random View Post
.....
Seven days a year of paid sick leave? Predictable work schedules and time off? Those are things they should have to fight for? That should be basic to everyone.
....
Yeah, it all sucks. But there's an argument to be made that their high pay is compensation for their crappy working conditions. I note again that a lot of people paid much less also don't get paid sick leave, or even paid vacation, let alone paid health insurance. There's no evidence that the union offered to give up anything else in exchange for sick days. They already get 15 paid days off and generous health care coverage.

Also from the above link:
Quote:
The deal includes a substantial increase to hearing aid benefits and coverage for autism without age limitations. Union members will not have any changes in copays, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums.
That just doesn't sound like abuse.

Originally Posted by Random View Post
.....
And frankly, if a few thousand workers going on strike is enough to cripple the US economy, those workers should probably be getting more than 111K in any case.
The other side is that if a few thousand workers going on strike can cripple the economy, they shouldn't be allowed to strike.

The biggest mistake the American labor movement ever made was the air traffic controllers' strike. That had the potential to hurt everybody and even endanger lives, and made the union look selfish, short-sighted and greedy. They gave Reagan good reason to bust them, with broad public support, and unions haven't been the same since.
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Old 1st December 2022, 10:58 PM   #981
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
That just doesn't sound like abuse.
To poke at this a little, I think that this particular attempted point is rather weaker than you think. There's a substantial increase to "hearing aid" benefits without increase in how much they need to pay, specifically? If they need hearing aids in the first place, they'll pretty certainly need hearing aids to function at work. So that's far more a 'we want our (maybe increasingly) elderly workers to keep doing their jobs' "concession" there.
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Old 1st December 2022, 11:23 PM   #982
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To poke at a small but possibly very good FEC change - it looks like, going forward, general public political ads will be required to identify who paid for them.
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Old 2nd December 2022, 09:11 AM   #983
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
You can rant all you want about evil "capital" like an elderly Parisian Marxist, but the plain fact is that many, many Americans eke out their livings in jobs that pay vastly less than rail workers earn, with no benefits, no job security and no paid time off for sickness or anything else. That's maybe not the way it should be, but it's the way it is. And if Starbucks baristas or Uber drivers or adjunct professors have their holidays ruined and their livelihoods wrecked so a bunch of guys making over $100 grand can get more time off, they won't be blaming "capital."

All the more reason to strike. When strikes force concessions that rising tide lifts all boats. All present labor protections would not exist if workers past did not engage in strikes painful to capital and thus an inconvenience to others. I'm sure disruptions of coal and steel was a bother and some workers might have been upset but none of them are whining when the 40 hour five day workweek became standard and everything else growing out of that.

All of this concern about this hurting other people is human shield rhetoric. The people feeding you this propaganda care about baristas and Uber drivers not at all.

During the teachers strike GOP legislators wouldn't shut up about how the strike was hurting low income kids dependent on free meals at schools when at the same time they were and are the ones demolishing the safety net creating that need. It's a shamefully cynical tactic and those that fall for it should feel foolish shame.

Choosing baristas as an example probably wasn't the best choice. There is a growing union movement and they would very possibly join a general wildcat strike if that snowball were to start rolling.

Not to mention the French. They'd never have these issues because they'd have rioted long ago. They understand that reminding the people in charge that in the end the governed and the workers have the power is vital to their well being.

Quote:




For reference:

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news...l-reached-ave/



I'm sure they're crying all the way to the bank.
Compare it to CEO salaries. Or what lawyers make. Or any number of jobs far less crucial.

If workers by quitting can cause billions of damage, well you better pay those workers accordingly.

Capital uses the threat of homelessness and poverty to force people to accept employment conditions and that's just the labor market and too bad, but when workers use the threat of economic damage for their advantage all of a sudden that "you get what you are worth" stuff goes out the window and people start telling them not to whine because they could be way worse off.

Bootlicking, all of it.
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Old 2nd December 2022, 09:21 AM   #984
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post

The biggest mistake the American labor movement ever made was the air traffic controllers' strike. That had the potential to hurt everybody and even endanger lives, and made the union look selfish, short-sighted and greedy. They gave Reagan good reason to bust them, with broad public support, and unions haven't been the same since.
Yes, historically labor makes it's best gains when they do nothing.

The only mistake was not retaliating with a general strike. Labor history is full of wins and losses. It's telling when someone brings up what was labor's biggest defeat in several generations and nothing else to imply union action is bad. As if that was the only strike in that time frame.
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Old 2nd December 2022, 09:36 AM   #985
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
All the more reason to strike. When strikes force concessions that rising tide lifts all boats. All present labor protections would not exist if workers past did not engage in strikes painful to capital and thus an inconvenience to others. I'm sure disruptions of coal and steel was a bother and some workers might have been upset but none of them are whining when the 40 hour five day workweek became standard and everything else growing out of that.

All of this concern about this hurting other people is human shield rhetoric. The people feeding you this propaganda care about baristas and Uber drivers not at all.

During the teachers strike GOP legislators wouldn't shut up about how the strike was hurting low income kids dependent on free meals at schools when at the same time they were and are the ones demolishing the safety net creating that need. It's a shamefully cynical tactic and those that fall for it should feel foolish shame.

Choosing baristas as an example probably wasn't the best choice. There is a growing union movement and they would very possibly join a general wildcat strike if that snowball were to start rolling.

Not to mention the French. They'd never have these issues because they'd have rioted long ago. They understand that reminding the people in charge that in the end the governed and the workers have the power is vital to their well being.



Compare it to CEO salaries. Or what lawyers make. Or any number of jobs far less crucial.

If workers by quitting can cause billions of damage, well you better pay those workers accordingly.

Capital uses the threat of homelessness and poverty to force people to accept employment conditions and that's just the labor market and too bad, but when workers use the threat of economic damage for their advantage all of a sudden that "you get what you are worth" stuff goes out the window and people start telling them not to whine because they could be way worse off.

Bootlicking, all of it.
Look, besides you and a couple others, I’m as far left as Americans get. The time to complain, as pointed out, was years ago.
Echoing Marxist rhetoric will gain no friends in the voting public, and the right has been too effective in (somewhat accurately) making union workers into the “elite” who are demanding to be treated much better than the average worker.

This an example of Dems actually compromising; the unions are t happy, the railroads aren’t happy, (they did make concessions which grind their gears, even if they don’t solve underlying problems). That’s how government should work. Tiny steps that piss off everyone.

It’s amazing that in this age any concessions were granted at all. But I’m fine keeping my job with long hours and no sick leave or insurance if all it costs is a tiny amount of workers getting raises that pisses off “capital”.

Maybe I’m going soft, but blowing up the system because one battle only went a little bit our way tastes sour to me.

And, I suspect, to millions of workers who are the only chance we have to make baby-steps toward actual equitable treatment between labor and capital

Also, quoting Regan might not shine the best light on your economic theory
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Old 2nd December 2022, 01:33 PM   #986
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Originally Posted by autumn1971 View Post
Look, besides you and a couple others, I’m as far left as Americans get. The time to complain, as pointed out, was years ago.
Echoing Marxist rhetoric will gain no friends in the voting public, and the right has been too effective in (somewhat accurately) making union workers into the “elite” who are demanding to be treated much better than the average worker.



Also, quoting Regan might not shine the best light on your economic theory
Reagan?

Anyway, caring about the popular opinion at present shouldn't be a concern. That's how civil unrest like a strike works. You make them feel the pain, you take the beating, and what happens happens. Or shut up and eat ****. Personal choice, but the people who shut up and eat **** need to stop acting like they are somehow noble for doing so.

I do think the way this was done is shameful. The Democrats used the crisis element of the situation and not only didn't use it to the advantage of the workers, they used it to kneecap them. I don't expect much better from them so that's something I'd maybe get over at some point in the cause of Republicans Are Just Too Damn Evil.

However, Biden's statement was the most infuriating thing I can remember ever reading, and I read Scalia, Alito and Thomas regularly. Just full of anti-labor tropes and misinformation and literally claiming to help the workers by jamming an agreement they declined down their throats. From someone claiming to an ally.

25% raise sounds dramatic? If you leave out that it is over five years. That he's getting into this implications of greed is bad enough, but to distort it to that end is just unforgivable.

I'm done with Biden. He didn't need to say all of that out loud.
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Old 2nd December 2022, 01:34 PM   #987
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Well this thread took a pretty weird turn. I keep waiting for some of our centrist Dems to chime in with criticism since they claim to be willing to do so when it's safe and this is as safe a space for it as possible - no elections to throw, no Republicans to inadvertently boost, or involved at all as a matter of fact, it's a complete self-own. Like stepping on a rake.

Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
You can rant all you want about evil "capital" like an elderly Parisian Marxist, but the plain fact is that many, many Americans eke out their livings in jobs that pay vastly less than rail workers earn, with no benefits, no job security and no paid time off for sickness or anything else. That's maybe not the way it should be, but it's the way it is. And if Starbucks baristas or Uber drivers or adjunct professors have their holidays ruined and their livelihoods wrecked so a bunch of guys making over $100 grand can get more time off, they won't be blaming "capital."
This comment gets the irony prize though, for arguing that unions shouldn't seek to improve the conditions of their workers because of how poor the conditions are of workers not in unions, and choosing workers that have been actively pushing to improve their conditions by forming a union to make that point.
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Old 2nd December 2022, 05:18 PM   #988
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
Well this thread took a pretty weird turn. I keep waiting for some of our centrist Dems to chime in with criticism since they claim to be willing to do so when it's safe and this is as safe a space for it as possible - no elections to throw, no Republicans to inadvertently boost, or involved at all as a matter of fact, it's a complete self-own. Like stepping on a rake.


This comment gets the irony prize though, for arguing that unions shouldn't seek to improve the conditions of their workers because of how poor the conditions are of workers not in unions, and choosing workers that have been actively pushing to improve their conditions by forming a union to make that point.

I hope Starbucks organizers succeed. But if they go on strike to shut down the local stores, there are plenty of other places to buy coffee. Even going without wouldn't be much of a loss. It will ultimately come down to who can survive longer without income. But an essential industry on which the entire economy depends is different, and the railroad workers already have a generous union contract. The dispute was over whether they should get more days off. I think they should. Congress could have compelled it. But I don't think that's worth shutting down the national economy over in the dead of winter, and I don't think the rail unions did everything they could -- including a publicity campaign -- to advance their goals. "Give us what we want or we hit the bricks!" is antiquated thinking in the modern world.

Reposting from above:
Quote:
The raises will be the biggest the railroad workers have received in more than four decades. The railroad industry has said that average rail worker salaries will reach $110,000 by the end of the five-year deal in 2025.
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news...l-reached-ave/

This is just not the downtrodden proletariat. What percentage of the American workforce earns $100K+ with job security and full benefits?
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Old 2nd December 2022, 05:50 PM   #989
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
I hope Starbucks organizers succeed. But if they go on strike to shut down the local stores, there are plenty of other places to buy coffee. Even going without wouldn't be much of a loss. It will ultimately come down to who can survive longer without income. But an essential industry on which the entire economy depends is different, and the railroad workers already have a generous union contract. The dispute was over whether they should get more days off. I think they should. Congress could have compelled it. But I don't think that's worth shutting down the national economy over in the dead of winter, and I don't think the rail unions did everything they could -- including a publicity campaign -- to advance their goals. "Give us what we want or we hit the bricks!" is antiquated thinking in the modern world.
Not quite. The dispute was whether they should have any days off at all. Basically, the railways have cut the workforce to the bone, and there are not really enough workers to do the job. So the railways have implemented a 24/7 on call system in order to have a flexible, always ready workforce that can be put to work on a moments notice and basically put on a shelf when not needed.

Great for the railway companies, but it sucks for the workers. While they are technically working a certain number of hours a week, they have no real way of knowing when those hours will happen. They might have a scheduled day off, but that means nothing if they get the call to come in. Vacations, family dinners, doctors appointments, basically anything that is not work might get thrown out of whack at a moments notice.

The sick days are a big issue on both sides, as the magical, low-workforce, computer-optimized flex schedule gets thrown out of whack if one worker is sick, regardless of whatever documentation the worker might obtain from a doctor. So getting sick and not working is punished by the railways as much as legally possible.

That's what the argument has been about really. Neither side has been budging on that one for the last few years.
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Old 3rd December 2022, 03:34 PM   #990
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Originally Posted by Random View Post
Yes, and those workers should be treated better. There should be minimum standards for all workers that are superior to what we have. So what? That doesn't mean that this particular group of workers should be treated poorly.

Seven days a year of paid sick leave? Predictable work schedules and time off? Those are things they should have to fight for? That should be basic to everyone.

And frankly, if a few thousand workers going on strike is enough to cripple the US economy, those workers should probably be getting more than 111K in any case.

Funny!

The place I work is retail. The people who deal with the public make minimum wage ($15+/hour in Silicon Valley), don't know their schedules until the Sunday before that week. And what is paid sick leave? No medical benefits either.

These peoples' average salary is a little more than 1/4 of the railworkers.

You think they are sympathetic?

How about we start at the bottom and work our way up with this "fairness" thing? It always seems to go from the top down, and it never makes it very far down.
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Old 3rd December 2022, 06:57 PM   #991
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Originally Posted by mgidm86 View Post
Funny!

The place I work is retail. The people who deal with the public make minimum wage ($15+/hour in Silicon Valley), don't know their schedules until the Sunday before that week. And what is paid sick leave? No medical benefits either.

These peoples' average salary is a little more than 1/4 of the railworkers.

You think they are sympathetic?

How about we start at the bottom and work our way up with this "fairness" thing? It always seems to go from the top down, and it never makes it very far down.
Maybe you should form a union and threaten to strike instead of whining about what you haven't gotten in comparison to others..
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Old 3rd December 2022, 09:26 PM   #992
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Originally Posted by ZiprHead View Post
Maybe you should form a union and threaten to strike instead of whining about what you haven't gotten in comparison to others..

I'm not one of those workers I just work for the same company, and I didn't say they were complaining, they aren't. That's kind of my point. What's yours?
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Old 3rd December 2022, 11:28 PM   #993
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Originally Posted by ZiprHead View Post
Maybe you should form a union and threaten to strike instead of whining about what you haven't gotten in comparison to others..
You think it's easy to form a union? Some of the wealthiest and most powerful people and corporations in the country will fight you, and the law is generally on their side.
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Old 4th December 2022, 07:00 AM   #994
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
You think it's easy to form a union? Some of the wealthiest and most powerful people and corporations in the country will fight you, and the law is generally on their side.
Including the President, apparently.
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Old 4th December 2022, 09:37 AM   #995
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Old 4th December 2022, 09:46 AM   #996
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Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
You think it's easy to form a union? Some of the wealthiest and most powerful people and corporations in the country will fight you, and the law is generally on their side.
I know all this because I've been through it all.

And I would also say when the laws are violated by management the law just looks the other way.
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Old 4th December 2022, 09:00 PM   #997
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Originally Posted by ZiprHead View Post
I know all this because I've been through it all.

And I would also say when the laws are violated by management the law just looks the other way.
Still that way, eh?

To add a bit of a small history lesson for those not aware, the origin of "police" (note that this is not law enforcement as a whole) is basically just businesses pushing off their security costs onto the community. It's not as bad as it was then after major reforms, but... it's still fairly certainly true that police will tend to act on behalf of business management over business labor in a bunch of ways.
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Old 4th December 2022, 10:23 PM   #998
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Well, it may be too soon to tell, but it sure looks just like a major bit of domestic terrorism has happened in North Carolina.

Sheriff: Firearms caused damage that led to Moore County blackout; Curfew is in place amid State of Emergency

A State of Emergency is in effect in Moore County after a massive power outage caused by damage to substations by firearms.


There are unverified claims that it was intended to take out the power at a drag show, either way, and that's certainly entirely plausible. More evidence is needed before any firm conclusions, though. I find myself curious about Biden's reaction, including whether he'll publicly make a statement or direct further aid.
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Old 5th December 2022, 10:46 AM   #999
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Originally Posted by mgidm86 View Post
I'm not one of those workers I just work for the same company, and I didn't say they were complaining, they aren't. That's kind of my point. What's yours?
If they aren't complaining about their working conditions but are complaining/unsympathetic that other people are taking personal risk to complain about their working conditions they are the very definition of bootlicking. I can see feeling powerless to take action, but being resentful that others manage to do so is pure envy.

Anyway...

Your line of posts reads like someone with a very strong grasp as to the benefits of a union but thinks that strikes are a bad way to do anything about these problems because of public reaction to the inconveniences and economic effects of a strike.

Which is incoherent in that all those benefits come from the threat and reality of work stoppages. If that is off the table the powerful have no reason to ever agree to pro-labor policy. That it causes disruption is the point. It makes it impossible to ignore.

The essence of labor law is not some high minded noble pursuit of fairness. It's to avoid the inevitable violence that happens when workers collectively stand up for themselves and the powerful respond to that with everything they have from PR campaigns to armed goons.

That conflict is the reality and history tells us it a state of war. Early labor history was horrific. Yet it was the prime cause of the whole idea of workers having legal rights and developing what amount to rules of engagement during conflict.

Biden, by employing anti-labor rhetoric in urging congress to force a union to accept a deal thus making any following strike illegal ultimately puts us all in danger. We've in our lifetimes never had full on labor unrest. To some degree management and labor have observed rules of engagement but now more and more the government is indicating it will throw it's weight against labor. The chances of strikes spreading and becoming violent grow the more government favors the interests of capital.

This eventually ends in violence. Pinkertons shooting people, the powerful using law enforcement as a pretext to suppress workers, workers destroying business assets and/or violently deterring replacement workers. None of which is desirable. In this case it isn't hard to image someone like the proud boys shooting up a picket line because socialism.
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Old 6th December 2022, 09:43 PM   #1000
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Originally Posted by Suddenly View Post
.....
Your line of posts reads like someone with a very strong grasp as to the benefits of a union but thinks that strikes are a bad way to do anything about these problems because of public reaction to the inconveniences and economic effects of a strike.
.....
Most strikes are focused on one employer. If, say, GM employees go on strike, it only affects GM and their customers and suppliers. That's bad enough, but most people and businesses would continue pretty much as normal, and most strikes don't even have the impact that a GM strike would have. Who would really be hurt if all the Starbucks shut down? But a rail strike wrecks the entire economy, including ordinary families who can't buy food and fuel oil. It's just not realistic to expect the entire country to suffer for the benefit of workers who already have much more in pay and benefits than they can hope to get for themselves.

And when was the last major strike in the U.S.? I suspect it's been at least 30 years. There has been general recognition that strikes are bad for employers and labor.
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