Boeing, machinists agree to contract

It looks like the Boeing strike is over:

The company gave in to union demands on issues that had triggered the strike more than three weeks ago and which had shut down Boeing’s jetliner production in the Puget Sound area at a critical time, just as Boeing was cranking up to meet growing demand by customers for new jets.

Apparently, former House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt, a Boeing consultant, helped broker the deal.

Anyway… good news for the machinists, good news for Boeing, and good news for the whole region.

Comments

  1. 1

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Capitalism at its finest — workers negotiating for a fair share of what they produce instead of taking whatever crumbs the plutocrats feel like giving them!

    Now I’m going to sit back and watch the trolls spew their union-hating hot air.

  2. 2

    Mark spews:

    If you want to be entertained, go read both spins of the agreement at the respective union and Boeing websites. Perhaps between both sites and the MSM, the truth is in there somewhere.

    The union pretty much “won” (by not losing), but the average striking worker didn’t really gain all that much. They saved about $3,000 in proposed health insurance co-pays, but lost a month’s wages. I guess if you’re a new hire or nearly retired and drive a forklift in Wichita, you did a bit better.

    The union leaders, however, got an opportunity to justify their inflated salaries (which, by the way, they still collect while encouraging union workers to keep striking “for the good of all”).

  3. 4

    Puddybud spews:

    Mark, you mean those greedy thieving union leaders like Mark Blondin continued to get paid while the little peeples on the picket line struck and lost their wages during this time? Wow, talk about equality!!! But Mark this just can’t be. Their donks! They are supposed to be quality peeples, looking out for the little guy. Taking their lumps with the little guy. Making an example for the little guy. This type of high falluting behavior is only for the Halliburtons of the world. You know where they rip us off (NOT!). But wait, what about the Shaws of the world. I suppose I have to include them with the Halliburtons. Say it ain’t so Mark?

  4. 5

    Chuck spews:

    Roger Rabbit@1
    Yes that is what EVERY American worker does every day, Roger, they either negotiate a good contract or walk. By the way I have nothing against unions.

  5. 7

    Chuck spews:

    Roger Rabbit@1
    Possibly you didnt hear the important part…TENATIVE. The machinists have thrown it back into the unions face before!

  6. 8

    drool spews:

    Mark,

    You forget the retirement bump in pay. That was one of their big deals.

    One thing. You don’t “lose” money by being on strike.. You just don’t earn it. If you don[‘t work weekends, you’re not losing money there. To truly be losing money you’d be working and not making money or making less. If you are sleeping in, getting in shape and enjoying the time off, I hardly consider that a loss.

  7. 9

    Felix Fermin spews:

    God I love my working class Kent neighborhood. I have no fewer than three machinists within a half-block radius of my house, and I’ve spoken with each of them during the strike to offer my support and ask what I could do to help.

    The conversations went something like this … “we’re just trying to hold the line for the next generation” … “we owe earlier strikers for our standard of living, so we can do no less for the new hires” … “we’ve put in 20-30 years for the company, the least they can do is follow through on our retirement”.

    God bless unions! And way to go strikers!

  8. 10

    Harry Poon spews:

    Without decent retirement older workers will be forced to continue working part time. This can’t be helpful to younger workers. Two halftime older workers equals one younger worker—and there are no inconvenient benefits to worry about. This sort of worker arrangement was pioneered decades ago by Sears— and you can see how well that worked, long-term.

  9. 11

    Mark spews:

    drool @ 7: “If you are sleeping in, getting in shape and enjoying the time off, I hardly consider that a loss.”

    I personally know a couple of families impacted by the strike. There was no “enjoying the time off.” There was scrambling to find temporary work, there was much hand-wringing, there were tears and there were comments like, “well, I guess that means we have no Christmas.” Sure, they had a bit of money in reserve, but taking $4,000+ out of the monthly budget for a family of four gets old really fast.

    Sounds like the pro-strike union workers you know are all single with nothing better to spend their money on than beer and fixing up their cars. Selfish bastards.

    And, as I mentioned before, I would bet dollars to doughnuts that the union “leaders” still cashed their $10,000+ monthly paychecks while the rank-and-file “held the line” and their families suffered. Not only are they no better than the allegedly greedy company bosses, but they’re hypocrites who earn their pay by scaring their constituents.

  10. 12

    Curtis Love spews:

    Mark @ 10

    I would bet dollars to doughnuts that the union “leaders” still cashed their $10,000+ monthly paychecks while the rank-and-file “held the line” and their families suffered

    Well, you see, Mark, the union LEADERS (they’re elected by the rank and file, Mark) are NOT on strike; the Boeing machinists are. They’re WORKING, in other words, coortdinating union payouts to striker families (yes, part of union dues goes to a strike fund that tries to mitigate the impact of wage loss during union work stoppages), negotiating with management for a better deal and an end to the strike, and so on. You may not approve of them, but the workers do. Yes, Mark, they ELECTED THEM. so really, what you think doesn’t count in that regard.

  11. 13

    drool spews:

    I know folks that were impacted too. I also consider it a “must do” to have a cash recerve in the event of a strike or layoff. It’s not like the contract expiration is a surprise. You think it’s selfish to be prepared? That’s the problem with America. Nobody seems to be saving for a rainy day….including the government.

  12. 14

    James S. spews:

    My Mom is one of the machinists on strike. They had to use thier savings to make it this month. But she was happy to get out of Boeing for awhile. I told her that the strike they are part of is hurting us financially. My company lost 1.3 million because of it. That was just this month. So they told all of us they had to reduce hours to offset this loss. So in the long run all the non-union aerospace workers just paid for the unions strike. That is the facts that no one will address in MSM. While the union workers get more pay Boeing forces us suppliers to cut our costs. This causes us to lose benefits. But at least the hard workers get advanced in the private sector. Not just because we show up everyday and pay our union dues.

    James S.

  13. 15

    Libertarian spews:

    I can’t really blame anyone for trying to get better retirement benefits. After all, social security is pretty skimpy. In today’s world, a person needs to build multiple sources of retirement funding just to have a minimally good retirement!

    I think it would be good for us working stiffs to have control over that portion of our paychecks that social security takes for our “retirement.” We ought to at least have the option of controlling our own retirement funds rather than leaving it up to the Feds.

  14. 16

    Mark spews:

    drool @ 12

    You clearly don’t have a family. Sure, you can set aside a few thousand as a contingency, but do you really think a family of four can just sit on $12,000 to $15,000 (required for a 90-day strike)?

    It is selfish for union workers who make good money to go on strike without considering the impact it will have on their families and people peripheral to the industry like James @ 13.

  15. 17

    Mark spews:

    Curtis @ 11

    “the union LEADERS… They’re WORKING,”

    Yeah. And making $100K, $200K, $500K… They get up to the podium, pump their fist in the air (“hold the line!”) and then get in their air conditioned town car and either drive to their suite at the Hyatt or settle into a first class seat on the flight home. Meanwhile, Joe Striker goes home after a day of picketing to a sad wife and a hot plate of Beanie Weenie.

    “coortdinating union payouts to striker families (yes, part of union dues goes to a strike fund that tries to mitigate the impact of wage loss during union work stoppages)”

    Strike funds are what, $100 a week? And only if you picket.

    “You may not approve of them, but the workers do.”

    Go read a few union websites. I was surprised to see the number people bitching about the fact that union bosses make many times what the highest-paid worker does.

    My point is that these union bosses do NOTHING in solidarity with their workers. You Lefties complain about how GOP politicians make decisions from which they insulate themselves. Well, this is the same damn thing.

    Perhaps the union leaders should have to set aside for strike time. Perhaps they need to feel the pain of their constituents. After all, they encourage the workers to strike. Sounds more like a “do as I say” cult than organized labor.

  16. 18

    Mark spews:

    me @ 15, drool @ 12

    Now that I think about it, if union workers have THAT much extra money floating around — enough to not work for 3 months — they clearly aren’t suffering like the workers of the Industrial Revolution.

    That’s the problem with the Left and their Culture of Entitlement. Once you get the car, the house… you feel you deserve — nay, have a RIGHT to — a better car and a bigger house, but without putting forth more effort — either physically or intellectually. And your political leaders stir up the class warfare pot just to keep themselves employed.

  17. 19

    Mark spews:

    Oh, and by the way, kids, the idea of a “closed shop” and forced union membership is considered a human rights abuse by the UN. (UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 20, section 2)

    So, all you closed-shop-loving Dems who wail about human & civil rights are going to have to put up or shut up. People have a right to work!

  18. 21

    righton spews:

    goldy,

    I say bravo; heck better that Gebhardt is looting the private coffers now, than his past 30 yrs raping all of us via the power of government.

    Can you sick Boxer, Frank and Leahy on some other industries? (just keep the former dems away from nuclear deals, election deals etc (carter in n korea, carter in venezuela.)

  19. 22

    drool spews:

    Mark, If you’re not sitting on that 12k you can tap into, you’re doing your family a disservice. My statement about lack of saving in America stands. I don’t have a big screen, HBO, boat, jet ski, but I do have the cash to be out of work a while.

  20. 23

    Mark spews:

    drool @ 21

    You’re making my point for me. If you have $12K to just “sit on,” then you’re not living the hand-to-mouth existence the unions cry to the public about. In other words, you’re not the underpaid blue collar slaves you make yourselves out to be.

    I have to give the unions credit. They have succeeded in making everyone — both their own members and the non-union public — believe that workers are suffering. Instead of working in partnership with companies for mutual success — which would result in less need for conflict and less need for overpaid union bosses — union leadership chooses to make things adversarial. Why else would they try to unionize F-ing Nordstrom? Luckily, those employees realized that union meddling would only make things worse and they told the union to go to hell.

  21. 24

    Curtis Love spews:

    mark @ 23

    “Suffering” is relative. Yes, our union workers live better than Somali herders. Is that the standard we want to apply to American workers?

    You seem to think what adversarial relationships are bad. Would you prefer that prosecutors and defense attorneys “work in partnership for mutual success?” If this were to happen in labor relations, who then defines success? Who has to give in on what they want? I thought that this process is already what happens in union/management negotiations. How is your “partnership” idea any different? I suspect your conception of it entails worker giveaways without similar corporate largesse. Correct?

  22. 25

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Comment on the comments in this thread

    I think it’s great the striking machinists gave up three weeks’ pay to take care of the union’s retirees. That’s more sacrifice for the benefit of others than Bush will ever ask of rich taxpayers or his business cronies.

  23. 26

    Mark spews:

    Curtis @ 24: ““Suffering” is relative. Yes, our union workers live better than Somali herders. Is that the standard we want to apply to American workers?”

    If you’ve got $12K to just “sit on,” like Mr. drool does, you are not a slave and you are not suffering. But you’ve bought into the whole Lefty entitlement thing. Tell me, for your extra money, did you provide better, faster or more efficient service?

    “Would you prefer that prosecutors and defense attorneys “work in partnership for mutual success?””

    They do. EVERY day. Plea bargains… mediation…

    “You seem to think what adversarial relationships are bad.”

    No. They’re just fine. However, I object to adversarial situations when there is no reason for such. Just look at what the airline and auto unions have done and are doing. They refuse to acknowledge that their respective industries are suffering. And what happens? Bankruptcy and the unilateral dissolution of union contracts. Who loses? The out-of-work employees. The company. The customers. Who wins? The overpaid union boss who makes $250K, wears a Union Yes lapel pin, but never financially suffers another day in his/her life.

    How can you NOT be pissed off? Don’t you realize that the union bosses are like drug dealers? They’ve got you hooked on the idea of striking and making more and more money. You take all the risk and they’re the only ones with guaranteed rewards.

  24. 28

    Mark spews:

    Roger @ 25

    By the way, the “rich taxpayers” pay the bulk of the taxes that keep the wheels of government turning. The wealthiest 1% of taxpayers pay 25% of all taxes.

  25. 29

    JCH spews:

    3rd Attempt Through the filter: Simply move the company out of WASH to a right to work state. If the company is “unfair”, I’m certain you libs will want them to leave. [hehe]

  26. 30

    Mark spews:

    JCH @ 29

    Boeing is doing just that — slowly but surely moving out of a business-hostile state.

    What these union lemmings don’t understand is that Boeing signed the deal for two reasons — neither of which was union pressure. First, the net dollars were basically the same. Unions can lie about that, but Boeing can’t. Second, Boeing is doing what Microsoft has been doing for a while — resolving distractions for PR and business focus purposes. They take a small hit financially, but gain in the big picture. Look at Saturday’s Seattle Times. Boeing wants to present themselves as moving forward. The union leadership probably could have gotten more, but failed.

  27. 32

    Mark spews:

    ??? When? Where? Are you sure it wasn’t Mark the Redneck or marks or Mark1 or even Mark (the Left Nut)?

  28. 33

    Curtis Love spews:

    “If you’ve got $12K to just “sit on,” like Mr. drool does, you are not a slave and you are not suffering.”
    So unless one has no assets, one is not allowed to negotiate with one’s employer for a better deal? Bull. I say, unionize the technology workers. Hey, but they have assets! They shouldn’t be allowed to organize! As I said, bull.

    “But you’ve bought into the whole Lefty entitlement thing. Tell me, for your extra money, did you provide better, faster or more efficient service?”
    A) Negotiating a better deal with one’s employer is NEVER an “entitlement.”
    B) I never mentioned being in a union, but when I was, hell yes I worked better, faster, and harder for an employer who gave me a fair deal in union megotiations and slower, worse, and more feebly for assholes who try to screw me. I’d be a damn fool to do anything else.

    “…prosecutors and defense attorneys [do] “work in partnership for mutual success…EVERY day. Plea bargains… mediation…”
    No different from union/management negotiations, in terms of adversaries cooperating and negotiating to achieve mutual agreement.

    “No. [adversarial relationships are] just fine. However, I object to adversarial situations when there is no reason for such.”
    You think a lot of your own reasoning. Both labor and management think that they operat as adversaries. Do you really think that the fat cats who own ands run our large corporate entities want to give workers a better deal than they have, or that they would not JUMP at the chance to reduce pay and/or benefits? The union’s role in making it costly for the bosses to do this protects workers everywhere, as do union efforts to elect labor-friendly representatives.

    “Just look at what the airline and auto unions have done and are doing. They refuse to acknowledge that their respective industries are suffering. And what happens? Bankruptcy and the unilateral dissolution of union contracts.
    And here you postulate that labor costs have driven airlines and automanufacturers out of business. I don’t accept your assertion. Build a car people want to drive, for example one with high enough quality to compete with Japanese-made iron, and auto maufacturers will do fine.

    ‘Who loses? The out-of-work employees. The company. The customers. Who wins? The overpaid union boss who makes $250K, wears a Union Yes lapel pin, but never financially suffers another day in his/her life.”
    Most union maangemetn coems up from the rank and file,m but that does not suit the image you are trying desperately to paint, does it? I got one for you: the cporporate exec who makes $500K who dissolves the emloyee pension plan and reneges on decades of worker contracts. He wins, too, doesn’t he? Where’s your outrage? Saving it for the working folk?

    “How can you NOT be pissed off? Don’t you realize that the union bosses are like drug dealers? They’ve got you hooked on the idea of striking and making more and more money. You take all the risk and they’re the only ones with guaranteed rewards.”
    Dude, I am SO not an idiot. And when I went on strike, I did so proudly, knowing that I was standing and picketing in solidarity with me fellow workers, doing it for myself AND my family AND for them AND for their families. It was a damn good feeling. Too bad you’ll never know it.

  29. 34

    drool spews:

    There is room for cooperation between the unions and companies. Southwest has continuing good relationships with their unions. Last time they came to an impasse the CEO quit and they got somebody else to negotiate a deal. I wish Beoing would walkt the talk more often in their union relations.

    Everyone has the right to negotiate their deal. Boeing CEO McNerney negotiated a $22 million pension.

  30. 35

    Mark spews:

    Curtis @ 33

    It is clear that you’ve bought the union talking points hook, line and sinker.

    “So unless one has no assets, one is not allowed to negotiate with one’s employer for a better deal?”

    No, when one has $12K to just “sit on,” one shouldn’t claim abject poverty. You want more money, fine. Just don’t pretend that you work in a company town for slave wages.

    “I say, unionize the technology workers.”

    Why? They get a better deal without union meddling — and union skimming.

    “Negotiating a better deal with one’s employer is NEVER an “entitlement.””

    But assuming that you deserve more money because you merely want it is.

    “I worked… slower, worse, and more feebly for assholes who try to screw me. I’d be a damn fool to do anything else.”

    Of course you did. You’re in a union, the folks who brought you the term “work to rule.” Screw you? How’s that? By giving you a job?

    “you postulate that labor costs have driven airlines and auto manufacturers out of business… Build a car… with high enough quality to compete with Japanese-made iron, and auto maufacturers will do fine.”

    You mean non-union, US-build Japanese cars? Factories where the unions have struggled to get a toehold? Competing with the union mentality of “slower, worse and more feebly?” And unions have failed to realize that it takes more to compete with non-union companies.

    “Most union maangemetn coems up from the rank and file”

    Great for them, but that doesn’t address my point that they collect up to mid-six-figure salaries while convincing their constituents that they’re just shy of slave labor. Like I said, perhaps they should do more than wear the lapel pin and make speeches. Perhaps they should cut their salaries “in solidarity” while their constituents are unpaid on strike. Better yet, those hundreds of thousands of dollars could go to the families of the strikers.

    “…the cporporate exec who makes $500K who dissolves the emloyee pension plan and reneges on decades of worker contracts. He wins, too, doesn’t he? Where’s your outrage?”

    You mean other than in situations where shortsighted unions drive a company into bankruptcy — like the airlines? If an executive deliberately goes back on a contract, that is wrong. My point is that you Lefties and union lemmings refuse to see anything bad in your organizations until it reaches Hoffa-esque proportions.

  31. 36

    Puddybud spews:

    Mark, are you referring to Eastern Airlines; where the mechanics struck to airline out of existence? Hmmm…

  32. 37

    Dean spews:

    Many folks complaining about Union Leaders and Boeing workers pay ? Union leaders were voted into office cause of how good they do their work.Many years ago I chose to fill-out a employment application at Boeing knowing I would have to save money for Union strikes and being laid-off as possabilties which both have happened. Before anyone complains about us they should understand and acknowledge which profession they themselves had chosen….also, remember without Unions there would be no minimum wage, 40 hour workweeks, weekends off work, healthcare or many other benefits non-union workers enjoy. America’s workforce would be much the same as the Soviet Unions. Dont believe me ? Ask an old-timer or study some history, Unions are why we all enjoy such a good life no matter what we do for a living here in America and abroad..