NYC Transit Strike
Boston and DC , but a quick scan of Google News brings up stories in South Africa, Bangkok ,
I’m pro-union from way back; I was a member of Local 54 Hereiu
when I worked in the casinos in Atlantic City. We even struck, briefly, in 84. As much as I’d like to sympathize with the TWU, it does seem like they’re asking for an awful lot. They’re asking for an 8% raise, every year for the next THREE years. And they want to make no contribution to a very nice health care plan. Of course, motormen, bus drivers and the like should have comprehensive vision care as well as access to substance abuse programs (zing!), but let's get real. Most of us who are covered by our employer’s health insurance plan pay about 1-3%. It’s not exactly a raw deal, people!
What really struck me in David Andelman’s commentary in Forbes was the salaries of the MTA workers (more than teachers!) and in particular, the “token booth” attendants(reassign them! Hellooo! No one uses tokens anymore!), who are incapable of responding to any questions except with a series of grunts and squeaks (mostly grunts, and with attitude, I might add, and you probably don't want to know what the squeaks are), make an average of 51K! Andelman also points out that, according to the Taylor Law the union will be fined a whopping $25,000 a day for each striker, plus a $1 million penalty, doubling every day the strike goes on. Also, each worker forfeits TWO days of pay for every day they’re out. Oh, and the union should make good on all those now-useless unlimited metro-cards by issuing credits once the strike is over.
Color me one union-sympathizer who, this time, has no sympathy.