Obama’s Union Thugs Descend on American Industry

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In perhaps one of the Obama administration’s most transparent efforts to burnish its pro-union credentials for the 2012 election, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is suing the Boeing Corporation, claiming its effort to move some of its 787 Dreamliner production from Everett, Washington to its $750 million aircraft plant in North Charleston, South Carolina represents “unfair labor practices.” South Carolina is a “right-to-work” state, whereas Washington remains a union stronghold of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW). The NLRB claims Boeing’s move is “retaliation” for a series of IAMAW strikes between 1989 and 2008.  Boeing says it will “vigorously contest” the lawsuit, and a June 14th hearing in Seattle has been scheduled.

“A worker’s right to strike is a fundamental right guaranteed by the National Labor Relations Act,” said NLRB acting general counsel Lafe Solomon in a statement released Wednesday. “We also recognize the rights of employers to make business decisions based on their economic interests, but they must do so within the law.” J. Michael Luttig, Boeing’s general counsel disagreed: “This claim is legally frivolous and represents a radical departure from both NLRB and Supreme Court precedent,” he countered.

The NLRB acted on a complaint filed by the IAMAW in March 2010. An investigation ensued, and the NLRB found “reasonable cause” that Boeing had violated two sections of the National Labor Relations Act by picking Charleston Airport as the site of its second Dreamliner assembly plant, instead of expanding its existing facilities in Everett. According to the suit, Boeing did so “to retaliate for past strikes and chill future strike activity,” adding that company officials had made “coercive statements” to unionized employees regarding their intention to move production out of the area. The Board cited internal documents demonstrating those intentions, and as well as several news interviews, specifically one by Jim Albaugh, CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, who told the Seattle Times that while Washington State is his “preferred location” for building future airplanes, the Puget Sound region will only remain favorable if the union “moderates its future wage demands and avoids strikes.” When asked about Boeing’s reasons for picking the South Carolina location for its second assembly line, Mr. Albaugh was blunt: “The overriding factor was not the business climate. And it was not the wages we are paying today,” he said. “It was that we can’t afford to have a work stoppage every three years. And we can’t afford to continue the rate of escalation of wages.”

Unaffordable is an understatement. The last strike occurred in 2008 and lasted for a total of 58 days, reportedly costing Boeing more than $1.8 billion in lost revenue. In an effort to deal with the outrageous burden, Boeing sought to raise worker health care costs, take away their defined benefit pension plan, and outsource more work. This was the fourth IAM strike since 1989, and Boeing began to believe that orders for the 787 Dreamliner were being endangered by a union willing to strike every three or four years.

As a result, in 2009, Boeing bought the former Vought aerospace manufacturing plant in North Charleston, South Carolina. Before Boeing announced its North Charleston plant, it attempted one more round of negotiation with the IAM, during which the union offered the company an “unprecedented 11-year agreement” to maintain the labor “stability” the company had requested. Yet union demands in return were far too extensive, as revealed in a statement released by the company after talks broke down:

Boeing had hoped to secure a long-term agreement with a no-strike clause that would ensure production stability for its customers and be cost competitive for the future.  In exchange, however, the IAM insisted upon terms unacceptable to Boeing, including a guarantee that Boeing would place all future commercial airplane production in Puget Sound, and a promise from the company to remain neutral in all IAM union organizing campaigns nationwide. When an agreement with IAM leaders could not be reached, Boeing opted to build the new facility in North Charleston.

Not mentioned in this release is the fact that the union had also demanded a seat on Boeing’s board.

Boeing then signed an agreement with South Carolina, which included $900 million in incentives and tax relief to sweeten the deal. IAMAW Vice President Rich Michalski was critical of the deal. “Boeing’s current management needs to rethink its strategy of repeatedly alienating its most valuable asset: the highly-skilled workers who build Boeing aircraft,” he said. “We will not allow our members to be made scapegoats for any purpose.”

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  • Nathan Howards

    Sounds like the IAMAW is against other Americans having jobs, unless they live in Pugent Sound. It also sounds like Mr. Rich Michalski believes that nobody in South Carolina is or can be HIGHLY-SKILLED WORKERS.

    • Truthteller

      Or maybe you're just wrong

      • coyote3

        Yeah, but with you raising the issue, my bets are one him.

      • Fred

        Maybe Boeing will open their next plant overseas.

  • kafir4life

    When I shop, I look for the "right to work" label. My problem with buying union made goods and services, is that purchasing from them ensures that a portion of your hard earned money will go to demonicrat coffers. I wonder if GM tracks how much of each Volt sold heads right back to BamO and Dingy Harry in the form of union campaign contributions? I'll bet that Barry and Dingy do!

    • Amused

      kafir4life , I think you'll have a hard time finding those bad union made products , becausde most of your "stuff " comes from companies that goe overseas for slave labor , and reduce their bottom line costs .[ oh and increase profits ] and avoid taxes.

      Hey but you keep them no good fellow Amereican workers in your crosshairs And while doing so , look up the contributions that the company manufacturing those goods , and WHERE that contribution money goes …..but you already know that …right ?

    • Jim_C

      Good for you, kafir! Keep that money flowing out of the country! Stick it to your fellow Americans!

      • Truthteller

        American corporations have been shipping jobs overseas to increase the bottom line for decades. Couple that with the destruction of high paying union jobs, and we've seen the end of the American middle class. What's left is a low-paying service sector at McDonald's and Walmart, hardly enough to buy a $200,000 house. Why people would continue to promote low-paid labor here is beyond me.

        • Chezwick_mac

          Simple. Because in a globalized economy, competing with foreign competitors necessitates lowering the costs of production. It's either that or bankruptcy…but such economic fundamentals somehow elude the liberal mind.

          And for the idiot (not you) who claims that "slave labor" abroad is taking American jobs, I find it ironic that 300,000,000 Chinese have been elevated into the middle-class over the last 18 years because of the "slave-labor" they are doing. I'm no fan of the Chinese government, and I think it unfortunate that US corporations continue to move their operations overseas, but I'm not so lame-brained that I blame it on the chimera of "slave labor". Labor costs are indeed lower abroad, but so is the cost of living. Western capital investment in China, India, Brazil and elsewhere into the third world has economically enfranchised over a billion people in the last decade and a half. That's something all the foreign aid in the world could never have done. It's interesting how lefties are avid proponents of foreign aid, which usually ends up in the Swiss bank accounts of corrupt local elites, but are rabidly opposed to foreign investment abroad, which actually transforms third-world economies into first world economies (look at Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong in the 80s and 90s, and China, India, Malaysia, Brazil, etc., over the last 15 years).

          The answer to the problem of US jobs moving abroad is not protectionism and more regulation, it is lightening the burdens of taxation and regulation so that American companies invest here at home.

          We have one undeniable advantage over our foreign competitors: lower transportation costs to get American goods to American consumers than foreign goods to American consumers. All we need do is for government to get out of the way and let these companies produce. But somehow, doing so would violate the liberal/left ethos.

          • Jim_C

            Well, take a look at those countries–or really, any other country–are they putting health care on the backs of their businesses?

          • scum

            But Chez, the whole point is: THE TAX BURDEN HAS BEEN LIFTED FOR YEARS ON AMERICAN CORPORATIONS. Check the stats for the last 3 decades and you'll see it's at rock-bottom. See how it's worked. In terms of Chinese workers, without doubt the shift to capitalism has pulled many out of the morass. But it's not always the factory workers. In fact, China is struggling because increasingly workers simply refuse to work for very low wages in the mass-produced factory sector.

  • Raymond


    1. $11 Billion to $22 billion is spent on welfare
    to illegal aliens each year by state governments.

    2. $22 Billion dollars a year is spent on food
    assistance programs such as food stamps,
    WIC, and free school lunches for illegal aliens.

    3. $2.5 Billion dollars a year is spent on
    Medicaid for illegal aliens.

    4. $12 Billion dollars a year is spent on
    primary and secondary school education
    for children here illegally and they
    cannot speak a word of English!

    5. $17 Billion dollars a year is spent for
    education for the American-born
    children of illegal aliens, known as
    anchor babies.

    6. $3 Million Dollars a DAY is spent to
    incarcerate illegal aliens.

    7. 30% percent of all Federal Prison
    inmates are illegal aliens.

    8. $90 Billion Dollars a year is spent on
    illegal aliens for Welfare & social
    services by the American taxpayers.

    9. $200 Billion dollars a year in suppressed
    American wages are caused by the illegal

    10. The illegal aliens in the United States
    have a crime rate that's two and a half
    times that of white non-illegal aliens.
    In particular, their children are going
    to make a huge additional crime
    problem in the U.S.

    11. During the year of 2005, there were 4
    to 10 MILLION illegal aliens that
    crossed our Southern Border, also,
    as many as 19,500 illegal aliens from
    Terrorist Countries. Millions of pounds
    of drugs, cocaine, meth, heroin and
    marijuana, crossed into the US from
    the Southern border.

    12. The National policy Institute estimated
    that the total cost of mass deportation
    would be between $206 and $230 billion
    or an average cost of between $41 and
    $46 billion annually over a five year

    13. In 2006, illegal aliens sent home
    $45 BILLION in remittances to their
    countries of origin.

    14. The Dark Side of Illegal Immigration:
    Nearly One million sex crimes committed
    by Illegal Immigrants In The United States .

    • Amused

      Excellent list Raymond , and I couldnt agree more , and share your concern. Now lets see if those things wind up on the Republican platform in 2012 . Lets seer if all these Republican Governors will attack that problem as vigorously as they attack American Unions .

      • Rifleman

        Arizona did, and Georgia is.

    • BS77

      We were deeply concerned about illegal immigration back in the early 1990s….none of the subsequent administrations has done much of anything to stop it. It is a slowly unfolding catastrophe ……..the costs are astronomical…but I think the projected costs of deportation are way too high…..We are doormats in our own nation. Unbelievable what liberal multicult PC nanny state open borders has done to this country. IT cannot continue indefinitely, for sure.

      • Sprinklerman

        First I believe in the American can do spirit and I believe that we can deport all of the illegals if we put our minds to it.

        Second, I believe that if ICE and Homeland Security were doing it's job, requiring all employers to check the status of all new hires, the job market for illegals would dry up, and most illegals will sooner or later get the message and self deport.

        And instead of fines for employers who knowingly hire illegals, we should put CEO's in jail and then we'll see how quickly the illegal job market corrects itself.

  • hugolawrence

    Does the IAMAW leadership NOT understand the concept of profit margins? I think they must. (If they don't then they are incompetent.) Then how can they not understand that if they strike and it costs the company billions of dollars, the profit margins shrink and the company must make choices to bring that back into balance. If moving to a more stable location that will not cost the company lost time and lost revenue every few years it would be foolish not to make that move. The IAMAW has shot themselves, and the people they represent, in the collective foot opting for a short term gain at the expense of a long term loss. If Boeing moves to SC, the many out of work people in WA can kindly thank the IAMAW leaderhip. The fact that the NLRB is suing Boeing just puts an exclamation point on the whole liberal/union relationship. It's not about keeping jobs in WA, it's about keeping jobs in the unions no matter the cost. Well this may have cost WA state a bundle in jobs. I hope the unions, and liberals are proud of their work.

    • Sprinklerman

      It's not that the IAMAW leadership doesn't understand the concept of profit margin. It's that they have a personnal agenda that is counter to Boeing. If they continue to get better labor deals with Boeing, then the majority of union members continue to put them into their lucrative union positions. Positions that pay well and have great benefits.

      The leadership at IAMAW didn't believe that Boeing would do such a horrible thing. And of course the workers in South Carolina did the unthinkable in the eyes of the Union leadership. But then that won't be the first time that leadership of a union is out of touch with it's membership.

      Look who Philly Firefighters Union leaders endorsed recently for the Demo primary against the incumbent Mayor Nutter; http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2011/04/07/phila
      A hot dog stand guy who is a convicted felon and tax evader. Word is that IAFF Local 22 membership isn't very happy.

  • Supreme_Galooty

    Boeing could close their doors worldwide, sell their assets, distribute 100% of the procedes to their shareholders, go completely out of business, and some moron somewhere (probably with a law degree) would sue them for "unfair" business practices. Their lawsuit would procede through the courts since the court system has been thoroughly infiltrated by highly schooled, under educated, pretentious morons (also with law degrees) who would ultimately rule against the former company.

    "In the land of the witless, the half-wit is king." – Bonny Fwank

    • Truthteller

      Or perhaps you're just wrong.

      • Supreme_Galooty

        Such a thing is possible, albeit unlikely. In any case, how would YOU ever know?

  • Amused

    Dont worry for Boeing , It's lobbies in Washington are very good at securing huge government contracts ….and "the cost overruns " …not a problem .

    • Rifleman

      What Boeing cost overruns?

      • Amused

        which one ? ISS contract ? New sidewinder missle ? Air Force refueling tanker ? Contract with India ? Pick one there's a biggger list .

  • Chezwick_mac

    So there it is, in Obama's America, a company no longer has the right to set up shop in the locality of its choice…even if invited to do so by the locality itself. And when Boeing finally does go under, the libs will attribute it to the failures of capitalism.

    • Rifleman

      Exactly, and they do the same basic thing with health care, finance, and the rest of the large scale manufacturing sector. The called the mess they made with their involvement and regulation of health care, finance, and US auto manufacturing a failure of capitalism.

      • GalileoOnTheMoon

        Kind of like a u-boat captain firing a torpedo at a cruise ship and then blaming the ship for sinking….a-holes !

  • ydroustan

    The so called 'Progressives', leftists, socialists, Marxists and the Obama Administration are unconcerned with typical American principles of freedom, free market, the Constitution and moral traditions. To them capitalism is selfish and evil, the Constitution is antiquated and entrepreneurialism is exploitative.

    The 'Progressives' despise America, tolerate Islamism, hate consumerism, praise Chinese communism, despise evangelical Christianity, ignore Muslim-imposed clitorectomy, and use democracy solely as a means to an end. One cannot argue with such brainwashed children of our American institutions of higher learning infiltrated as they are by Utopianism and Marxism. They have destroyed traditional logic and traditional mores and culture; They eliminated traditional history courses in favor of "queer" studies, black studies, Asian studies, women's sutdies; They celebrate free love, and remove responsibility and individualism, capitalism all in the name of 'tolerance.'

    President Obama, the Progressives, the uneducated teachers, the leftist-biased unions, and the brainwashed electorate, are the reason for the un-Americanism that we observe in our culture, even among our children and our grandchildren, educated as they are in leftists public schools. Thus, I am not surprised, as a shareholder of Boeing and as a taxpayer, that they oppose the foundations of capitalism in the USA.

  • Ghileaz

    Wow, looks like Truthteller and Amused are a union tag team. Or maybe I'm just wrong!

    • Amused

      You bet ,Ghileaz . Someones gotta keep you guys honest , with all your spewing of anti-union ,rehearsed corporate propaganda and rhetoric .Apparently none of whom ever worked a blue collar job , and in their lives have looked down upon those who have , fpor there is an unmmistable animus towards hardworking people , and i dont mean those sitting behind a desk , with hard arses and soft hands .

    • coyote3

      Yeah, and Tejanos might be Negro minstrels too, but that is not likely

  • Amused

    Oh , and Alhert …."Obama's Union Thugs " ???? And we call union members "THUGS " now ? Not surprising at all for Repo-Cons to turn and bite their fellow Americans .But aren't thing better now ? If Pakistani cotton crops fail , guess what ? you pay more for your underwear …..and just imagine where THAT money goes .

    • Rifleman

      What's this now nonsense? I've always called the goonions thugs. It's quicker and shorter than, "Lazy violent bums, dumb enough to let someone else negotiate them out of a job."

      • Amused

        Funny you should use the term 'goonions " . GOONS , THUGS hired by the companies to break picket lines .You know , those guys who walk around with rolled up newspapers around lead pipes , and take swipes at the men on the picket line . I doubt you've ever walked pickewt line or worked a blue collar job.Youi know nothing of organized Labor

  • Wesley69

    Boeing should be able to take their plant and build it anywhere they want. They run the business for the profit of the stockholders & bondholders in that company. This is capitalism. What the unions demand is Fascist-style Capitalism. It smacks of reelection politics for an important constituency.

    The union, by its demands, are driving Boeing out of Washington State. While the unions should protect the worker, they need to refrain from killing the goose that lays the golden egg. Obviously, they have not learned or refuse to learn the lesson of the steel rust-belt. That is their fault.

    Now, they want the Obama Adminstration, through the National Labor Relations Board to intervene. This is wrong. It is all about politics and this administration's support of unions. It needs to be decided, like everything about this regime, in the Federal Courts.

    If I were Boeing, I would think about taking my entire operation and moving to Brazil or some other country. Then again, this administration believes in a transfer of wealth out of this country. This would suit their purposes perfectly.

    Looks like the union members would be the odd man out. Thank your union bosses.

  • Supreme_Galooty

    While American manufacturing remains extremely robust, some American companies have moved operations offshore for a variety of reasons.

    1. The highest corporate tax rate of almost any country in the world.
    2. Excessive, oppressive government regulations and meddling (OSHA, EPA, NLRB)
    3. Aggressive labour unions and inordinately labour-friendly politicians and laws.
    4. An uneducated work force that is also afflicted with a pitiful work ethic.
    5. A deteriorating dollar (inflation) that leads to ever increasing commodity prices.
    6. A legal system that is a crap shoot at best, especially favouring "labour."

    • Fred

      7. Confusion from all the new EPA regulations and unknown healthcare costs.

  • Edge

    Wonder how Truthteller and Amused feel about the Democrats killing union jobs in… oh let’s say in the Oil Industry.

    Think about ALL the union jobs in the petroleum industry.

    Drilling for the oil. Pipes. Dereks. Bits. Rigs. Machining shops. Tool & die. ALL manufacturing jobs that require skilled labor!

    Construction. Building refineries… which we haven't done since the 1970's.

    Building pipelines. Pipe fitters. Welders. Maintenance crews.

    Plant managers.


    You dems prefer to outsource those jobs to Mexico, Central America and the Middle East. You would rather use food for energy. Boneheaded policies like this lead to higher unemployment, increased fuel AND food prices which will result in ANOTHER recession.

    • Fred Dawes

      THANK YOU.

    • Amused

      Yea think about it , a morator ium , to get the oil industry in line with it's own safety standards . You blaming unions for that ? Bp has killed American workers before their latest debacle in the Gulf , but i guess they dont count . That's not outsourcing , it's simply demanding that the oil industry abide by rules and regulations they agreed to in order to get the drilling contracts . If Bp hadn't been cheating for the sake of saving money which eventually cost Americans their lives , and the livelihoods of those living along the Gulf , there vwouldn't be a moratorium. PEROPLE LIKE YOU AND FRED DAWES are the reason UNIONS ARE NECESSARRY and REGULATIONS NEED TO BE FOLLOWED . The oil companies forsake safety and gamble with lives for the bottom line . I would never share the attitudes of you and your ilk .

      • Sprinklerman

        So how many of the more recent union contract negotiations from IAMAW have been about member safety initatives? How does the purchase and construction of a plant in South Carolina make it more unsafe than say in Seattle, when a worker refuses or doesn't wear his hardhat or his hearing protection?

        Interesting how the US Minerals Management Services (under Obama control) gave BP and Deepwater Horizon a safety award just prior to the explosion and fire that took so many lives.

      • coyote3

        If, and I say if BP was cheating it was with their accomplices in government. Indeed corporation are so oppressed in this country, I don't blame them for going overseas. Boeing should consider this, but they are too kind hearted, like most American business.

    • Fred

      Obama has offered to help fund a refinery – in Columbia.
      Obama has offered to help fund deep water drilling offshore Brazil.

      Meanwhile he, and the EPA have stiffled our oil industry. How does this make sense?

  • Fred Dawes

    'Well yes Obama will vall on his boys to attack any who have the money, that is normal and Obama is black and thugs are part of all black ideas of grab and run.

  • lizaz

    Go Boeing!!! We have watched for years as IAMAW has tried to control Boeing and, in their ignorance, they have only shot themselves in the foot many times. Each time they do something stupid, costing Boeing millions, they lessen the chances of increasing their membership and jobs with the company. obama and his ilk simply want all American companies controlled by union thugs (leadership) and this pathetic policy will lose in the end. And hopefully the END will be in Nov 2012. Companies will be free again to make fiscally responsible choices, not regulated by the "union".

  • Chezwick_mac

    Incoherent babbling once again, friend.

    1) You don't think Malaysia has been transformed economically over the last 20 years? You obviously know nothing of the region…(and I noticed you ignored my other examples).

    2) You didn't address the astonishing rise in income for hundreds of millions of Chinese, Indians, etc. over the last 20 years. "Slave labor" must be paying awful well these days.

    3) "Jobs lost have never been gained by re-investment here"…? Not sure what you're trying to say here. Jobs are jobs. New jobs are created in America all the time. But there would be many, many more if our tax and regulatory policies were more business friendly.

    Now calm down…and don't forget your meds.

    • Chezwick_mac

      PS – With oil at $110 a barrel, transportation costs actually DO impact the value of goods.

  • Bert

    There is clearly more common sense and integrity among the readers of Front Page Mag than we have in this entire administration. The problem is that we do not have a true democracy but instead we have a growing dictatorship lead by Obama and his henchmen. Obama has instigated so many crises, all at the same time, that most Americans are getting punch drunk trying to just keep abreast of all these crimes. That makes Obama stronger and the public weaker. As we move towards 2012 Obama will have amassed so much power that he will be able to rule by decree. The only hope at this point is the Tea Party, but only IF then can grow much faster than the power Obama is amassing.

    • Jim_C

      How so? How does he amass these incredible powers? You get an opportunity to vote against the man in 2012.

      • Steeloak

        And if that fails, our founding fathers crafted the 2nd amendment for a reason.

      • Sprinklerman

        1. Appointment of unelected czars.
        2. Ignoring the law.
        3. Selective enforcement of the law.
        4. Ignoring Court orders
        5. Appointment of individuals as regulators who will do his bidding, and they ignore law.
        6. Not upholding his oath of office "…and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

  • Jim_C

    I absolutely do–check the Scandanavian model. I think it's humane, civilized, and actually even more efficient (money not being siphoned off by lawyers, insurance companies, lobbyists, administration).

    Just imagine what businesses could do if not forced to provide this for employees! Imagine being able to count on that money to pay down your debts, invest and grow. And everybody having coverage, nobody stressing about their families; nobody forced into bankrupcy due to catastrophic events or illnesses. Come on Chezwick–let's do this thing!

    • Chezwick_mac

      Corporate debt is actually quite low these days by historical standards. Companies have become lean and mean through attrition (i.e., increasing the productivity of labor by laying off excess workers).

      Your solution is to transfer the responsibility AND COSTS of health care to government…at the very time we are confronted with unprecedented levels of PUBLIC debt. Doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

    • coyote3

      Where does our constitution authorize the federal government to be humane and civilized?

  • Steeloak

    Time to repeal the National Labor Relations Act. No more government protected union thugs terrorizing companies. The best solution for better working conditions is a free market in labor. If your job sucks – leave, find one that doesn't. Companies improve pay & benefits to keep good workers. Unions force companies to pay lousy workers top dollar & benefits. Ask any shop steward, if they are honest, they will say that their job mostly consists of protecting the goldbricks & screwups from getting fired.

  • Amused

    Can tell you never worked for a living . Dont count on the NLRB going away anytime soon .Why ? People like you .

    • coyote3

      We' ll just defund it, tee hee.

  • Steeloak

    I come from a family of autoworkers on both my father & mother's side. I lived in a heavily union state (Michigan) for 11 years. I left at the end of the Carter years – the last time the economy was this bad. I have worked many kinds of jobs good & bad, and I have owned several companies over the years. I think I know a thing or two about unions & union mentality. That's why I live in Texas, I love the freedom here vs the crabs-in-a-bucket union mentality in Michigan.

  • Amused

    I kinda doubt your story pal . You know nothing , You've owned 'several companies over the years " have ya ? All you know is what you parrot .

    • groovimus

      What a great story Amused. The best you can come up with is "You know nothing"? Amusing — a truly great story.

  • Amused

    " Obama's " union thugs descend on American industry ? Obama's ? Who are you kidding Alhert ?? And of course your perception of American Union workers , is THUGS ? Typical Republican "in the pocket of big buisiness rhetoric " . Anti-union , Anti-workers rights , the credo of Republicans ……and all the sycophants chime in .Tsk ,tsk ,tsk .

    • groovimus

      Yes I am amused that you take offense at us here calling a spade a spade. I worked for Lockheed Missiles and Space in 1984 in Sunnyvale, CA. I had an aircraft power supply on my desk since my job title was HARDWARE ENGINEER. Get that? Read those two words carefully. So I wanted to carry the unit to an assembly area to check on something, and started on my way down the hallway. I was new on the job so this very very self important guy – a nonwhite guy I had never seen – accosted me and very angrily dressed me down, and very thuggishly threatened me (not with violence) if I continued on my way. It still came off as THUGGISH — like why did he not introduce himself and nicely ask the white guy if he knows about about "work rules". Turns out this guy was a "shop steward", and I was violating rules providing that only union guys can transport pieces of product. So I, as HARDWARE ENGINEER, caused, by actually handling HARDWARE, a mental meltdown in one of these oh-so-rational union thugs. This is what has happened to Detroit. Slam down operational efficiency 50 percent by force of union work rules, and other "benefits" and you get Nissan setting up shop in TN, without this 50% penalty — such as GM has across town at Spring Hill and you have what you have. That is, severely crippled American iconic corporations, and Boeing is next in line thank you.

      • scum

        First off, it sounds like you should have read the rules. And I'm not sure how the 'dressing down' really hurt you. Did you ever have a boss yell at you? So what?

        Here are two counter examples: In the 80s we unionized Curbside Pickup. The result, brand freaking new trucks and a 30-35% raise.

        In the 90s, the New School organized. The result: another freaking 35% raise over 5 years for faculty. The NLRB under Bush did everything they could to stop it.

        One more exercise: compare the stats of unionized workers in America in 1975 with today. You'll notice a DRAMATIC DECREASE in the so-called THUGS. Yet are we better off now? I'll let you make that call, as the country slides into the abyss. . . . . LOL

        • groovimus

          "First off, it sounds like you should have read the rules. "

          You're joking, right? You surmise that engineering managers EVER take a new hire and explain these absurd "rules". To the contrary. You think I had a clue of a rule coming down on me thanks to the wonderous union? And engineers (including those with MSEE ) when new on the job actually have an inkling about "work rules", or whether there is some piece of paper that we had better ask for? We pretty much ignore "work rules" as we have important work to do, instead of making phone calls and waiting 10 min. — get that? Or lacking a phone #, walking the plant and taking a union guy away from useful work to come to my desk and pick up a 4 pound object and escort me 200 feet, then when I do my thing for 5 minutes go through all this again? Get a clue. Engineers and engineering managers at LMSC ignored these "rules", and not once did I hear such discussed except as a joke about my inauguration to this brilliant arrangement with brilliant unions in my first month.

        • groovimus

          " And I'm not sure how the 'dressing down' really hurt you."

          Hey genius — You can't get the point here. I never said I was "hurt". You think this is how normal behavior should be, that instead of being nice and asking whether the new guy had heard of "work rules", this brilliant union "steward" comes at me with a hard on? Like any THUG? THIS is the point. To the contrary, instead of being hurt I kept on my way after getting mental bearings and ignored the pitiful guy and left him with his "stewardship" to make the world a "better" place — if but a less efficient one. I found the episode a joke, entertaining. And he just got angrier.

  • Amused

    Such mean-spirited ignorance and partisan bias is pathetic , but it's the trademark of the Republican Party . You guys deserve another 4 years of Democrats-just to annoy you .

    • coyote3

      That has been rendered unlikely by the very people who wish it so.

  • Big Tom

    The vast majority of times, the NLRB will find in favor of unions as, not only are they sympathetic with them, but many are former or current members of unions. These unions are destroying this country in a way that our outside adversaries could only have imagined.

    • scum

      Are you serious? Bush staffed the NLRB with rightwingers that repeatedly sided AGAINST labor. It was part of the strategy of the right: instead of fighting against organizations/institutions you don't like, infiltrate and destroy from within. I'm surprised you didn't know that.

  • Josephus T Plumber

    Boeing took their eye off of the ball when they moved corporate headquarters from Washington—-where they actually build their main product—and the company’s commercial airplane business hasn’t been worth a darn since then.
    I suspect the pressure by the NLRB will merely cause Boeing to move the manufacture of their easy-open Spam cans to a third world paradise.

  • tramky

    Anyone remember SeaTrain? I'd suggest you look it up. The unions drove that company into the ground. Interesting but predictably, that resulted in ZERO union jobs. How's THAT for union leadership? Aren't you PROUD?! We are NOT dealing with smart people, we are dealing with vicious thugs. Take out the trash.

    • Kenavo

      Think about the brewerys in Milwaukee…only one big one left, and that is being shuffled around like a hot potato. Unions killed almost all manufacturing in Milwaukee, just like Detroit. UNIONS SUCK!

  • Happy_Quanzaa

    Who is John Galt?

    • dirtybird

      Character in Atlas Shrugged

  • dirtybird

    I just recently purchased a car for my daughter. On the windshield was a sticker saying it was built by AFL-CIO and the manufacturer. I peeled the sticker off.

    • Amused

      Why'd you buy it then ? -HYPOCRITE !

      • dirtybird

        Indeed, you are amusing…

  • Baffled

    I am baffled by our support for a President who fails to understand the basic concepts of capitalism. Why he and his socialistic friends continue omit the values and benefits of a vibrant American economy is beyond me. I can't believe anyone would vote for him again. Please wake up before he runs us into oblivion.

  • sal

    These progressive/leftist/liberal(not really)/marxist/neo-communist/college-aged cretins/etc. etc. are the scourge of the United States and will incrementally bring about its downfall…but it will be a slow fall, like the Roman Empire. Wait until people stop going to medical school and investing in medicine re:obamacare. Wait until all business leave the U.S. for the free market…in China!!!!! Wait till "Right to Welfare" is added to the Constitution….Wait for the People's Socialist Republic of the United States coming in 2084

  • Lightning Jack

    With the exception of Ford, observe what the unions did to the auto manufacturing industry in America. They drove G.M and Chrysler into bankruptcy with their outrageous wage and health benefit demands, which if approved, that would have priced their cars out of the domestic market.

    The education unions have transformed the American public education system into a government- humanist indoctrination camp which bans G-d, but promotes Islam, encourages licentiousness, decries Western Civilization, indicts American tradition, promotes cultural disharmony, and serves as a breeding ground to indoctrinate new, little liberal-progressives.

    • Amused

      Sorry jack , poor quality [due to cost cutting ] , remember those door handles breaking off in your hand , made of mystery metal composite ? Paint jobs that faded after 4 or 5 years , not to mention total unresponsiveness on the part of management as to what the American consumer wanted . Add to that competing with then government subsidized japanese car industry. You guy s are great with telling half-truths which are in effect half-lies . Iacoca Turned around Chrysler and then Ford by doing just that , not getting rid of unions , but soon after , your fellow patriotic ASmericans went for the those cheaper government suibsidized Japanese cars .And Management eventually overuled changes made by Iacoca trying to catch up with the Japanese . No different than the PC market which IBM refused to recognize until the Japanese were eating their lunch . Incompetent over-paid , top heavy , bonus granting management . Imagine that , BONUSES even when your company's failing !

  • Amused

    Tramky NOT ONLY DO I REMEMBER SEATRAIN , but worked / sailed on their ships . You are in error my freind , IT WAS NOT THE UNIONS , BUT THE MOB that brought down Seatrain. Get your story straight the next time , and then you can criticize the Genovese Crime Family .
    BTW , I sailed on the Seatrain San Juan , The Seatrain Brooklyn , and the Trans-Idaho .

    • dirtybird

      One and the same. BTW, are you channeling Frank Fitzsimmons? You sound a lot like him.

    • coyote3

      Well, in that case, it was the same people. Indeed, the unions made deals with mob many years ago, when they were down and almost out. The mob did help them, but as always, there was a price to be collected, and collected on, again, and again.

  • Amused

    Greta Idea SOI , it's called biting your nose to spite your face , noit to mention , a mentality that is the major cause of the unemployment rate .
    Better yet , YOU go fly on one after it's been built in China or Russia .

  • jacob

    So now, with OBAMA's "administration" help, the unions are looking to blackmail
    one of the American aircraft builders left, same way as they buried the American merchant marine, just to mention one of the trophies in their gallery ??

    Show me a single merchant or cruise ship flyng an American flag, as that very
    evening I will get drunk.

    Since when does a manufacturer have to ask permisssion form unions to
    decide where is he going to operate ??

    Whatis wrong with placing it in a "RIGHT TO WORK" state, free of the extortion
    practiced by unions ???

    Isn't it time pasee already to put then unions in their right place, whether OBAMA
    and the rest likes it or not ??

  • jacob

    I know of a case that illustrates the way unions operate…

    Some 30 years ago, certain railroad had to update certain wiring harness in their
    locomotives and called this technician for the job…

    Asked how long would the locomotive have to be down and how many people, he
    figured three days and five people on each…

    As soon as the union steward got wind of it, he informed him that, if he wanted the
    job, it would be either 10 days down and 12 people on each OR ELSE…

    Guess what happened

  • Texasron

    I hope Boeing decides to build a plant in Texas. We have no income tax, are a right-to-work state, support businesses, and have nice weather.

    Eliminate unions and there will be more work for everyone. Unions only suppress doing a job efficiently.

  • ThePittsburghSteeler

    Labor unions were largely responsible for the failure of the steel industry in America;
    because they pressured steel company managment not to use more efficient blast furnaces; in the aftermath of World War II. When U.S. steel companies finally did begin
    to use these more efficient furnaces, in the 1960's, the British, Germans, and Japanese had taken America's share of the world steel market, never to be retrieved. Union response to THIS was to blame steel company management. Let us also not forget that labor unions tried to destroy Food Lion in 1992; when with the assistance of television news crews, they made it seem as if Food Lion was violating food packaging and sanitation laws. Food Lion was forced to close dozens of stores in the southwest,
    and thousands lost their jobs. Now they're going after Boeing. What is John Boehner's response?


  • Demarcus Oyervides

    I am not really great with English but I line up this really leisurely to translate.