Friday, August 24, 2012

Part 3; another union anecdote

When I worked for the airline, living in Memphis, the teamsters made a big push to get voted in by the agents. That was when I worked for Fawlty Airways. Agents there worked upstairs as well as on the ramp, although we tended to keep some exclusively upstairs and others exclusively ramp. Everyone was cross trained, but I assure you, you do not want some people anywhere near an aircraft being pushed out of the gate, or involved in loading your bags on the plane. And you don't want people whose scowling face would scare children, and whose vocabulary consisted primarily of expletives, checking you in.

I was considered to be in management so I couldn't vote one way or the other. The agents most invested in promoting the union believed that they would be in heaven and never have any more difficulties if the teamsters prevailed. Reminds me of the woman who thought Obama would pay her mortgage and put gas her in car if he was elected. Somehow I doubt her hopes and dreams came to pass. Who knows, maybe he bought her house.

Fawlty, itself, was asking for it in my opinion. I forget most of the details but their management was awful. Other than the chief financial officer, I don't think any of them attained their positions based on ability and brains. Scum bags. The CFO, though was a person I considered brilliant. He also had a clever wit and sense of humor--something the others sorely lacked.

What many agents did not realize is that if the union won, many of the rules which now could be tempered by common sense would have to be followed by the letter. Since I was rather generous in giving benefit of the doubt, my group would have suffered a lot.

The good thing about this threat was that someone in corporate figured out that it was to their benefit to make some changes that any sane person would have put in place from day one. The union lost, changes were made, and Fawlty improved ever so slightly. Unfortunately the lying worms who permeated the managerial staff remained.

But, the moral of the story is that the agents were better off without the union, but because of the union, things got better. Why people are so steeped in the feudal mentality that they have to have a gun to their head to somewhat treat people in certain industries as possessing just a tad bit of value and humanity is beyond me. My way of dealing with it is to walk away. Because most people don't do that, the method of choice is to unionize.

I guess unions are the reason that everyone who has been in a job the same period of time gets paid the same. At least in many companies. Probably those that have government contracts in the closet. In the case of the airline I had about four agents worth X dollars per hour, ten worth X/4, and maybe seven worth X/3, the remainder were worth X/7. But they got paid the same, based on seniority. I'm being generous in the relative values. Some were only useful because you need to place a warm body in certain places at certain times. If we could have got by with a mannequin we'd have been better off, even if we paid it more.

Those worth X, were paid about half their worth. The others were paid more than their worth to the operation.

That is where the labor/management model we have falls way short. It wasn't that X/3 was doing his or her best. They were just devoid of that quality which causes some people to care if your bag makes the flight, if you make the flight, if your wheelchair gets destroyed, etc. The lack of empathy in the general workforce, both in Memphis and Greensboro, in that world, shocked me. At the same time, the inner drive of the A team to do a thing right, as long as they were going to do it, was impressive. Some people have pride in their work despite management's best efforts to kill it. And believe me, management in many companies does punish the responsible employees while rewarding the slackers by keeping them around.

So, I have cited an example in which a union was useful---even though they broke rule after rule in their efforts to cajole the employees to instate them.

part 2 re anarchy, laws, right and wrong

I must preface by saying if one believes as my "there is no truth" friend, then one likely also holds to the corollary of that theory which suggests there is no right or wrong--your wrong may be my right. In that case, there is no point in the discussion.

Once upon a time I was a member of a union. I thought it would help my plight with the racist, sexist phone company in Miami, heavily dominated by Cuban women and duplicitous managers of all shades. In reality, the well meaning union reps' hands were tied. The contract consisted mostly of guarantees for union management, provisions for offices, etc.

If you had a legitimate grievance, the first review to see if it could be acted upon was before a small board of 3, 2 of which were the people against whom you filed the grievance. There were further tedious, time consuming procedures which were very difficult to implement. Mostly the game was, pay dues, and let the union bosses thrive under a guaranteed tenure.

Not all of them are quite like that. I finally just left. If they didn't want me there and wanted to ignore good work while harassing me, my free market beliefs directed me to remove my services. The whole thing got rolling due to an incompetent co-worker who was in my training class. We were being sent to the same section at the end. He, one of few males in the place, was Cuban, so he would go up after class to kiss up in spanish. He gave reports on me that were untrue. A Black girl and I were the top of the class, but she was much faster at things. He was the class idiot. He claimed I was not getting it and he was trying to help me out.

Shameless, but he was of the preferred race and that set the stage. Unfortunately, Zena, my classroom pal, the black lady, went to another section. But this has little to do with anything.

What does have to do with anything is that it has become beneficial to many politicians to suspend normal rules for union behavior. Coupled with that is the effort to force people and companies to be unionized against their will. In public service (tax paid) jobs that means you have no choice but to pay dues to the outfit which then lobbies Congress and contributes to campaigns favorable to extending their power and wealth. Not many union bosses on food stamps.

To me that is a bit of a scam on taxpayers. That is where the money originates. This has become a major force in elections. And the tactics on the street are not always pretty. No one even blinks at union violence or destruction of property when they want to get their way.

Of course, I'd disallow any government contractor from direct lobbying. But, that would imply a free market approach to necessary government contracts. That doesn't always mean award the lowest bidder. As in real life, the best approach is to settle on what works best for the duration of the need.

Anyway, I know some people worship unions and turn a blind eye to this power structure. They beg the question; "what about xyz, etc.."

My argument is for choice, and for union members using their own personal money if they want to campaign for Chuck Schumer or some such crook. I've seen signs that say the International Brotherhood of Firefighters--or whatever it is called support a particular candidate, and that the ad is paid for by them. I'm thinking, "What if I was in that union and did not support that person?. My dues go to his campaign against my will, and that has nothing to do with the alleged purpose of this organization."

The fact that all is paid by the pubic under the guise of having people around to put out fires leads me to believe that this is a far cry from government services and agencies being under the will of the people.

But, that is why I think laws governing government need to strictly limit the scope of authority. The Constitution is supposed to do that but, like in the case of the union loop (union pays to campaign, politician kicks back laws and regulations to promote union which gets richer and more powerful and puts more people in office---etc). It goes on elsewhere too, I understand that, but this scheme may be about as powerful or moreso than any of them. They also push and cajole their people to vote a certain way. Sheeple welcome, all others Beware!

The healthcare thing is much less about health than it is a forfeiture of power by the citizenry. Or, in other words, a power grab by the federal government, particularly the executive branch. I still wonder why Congress and the president are exempt.
So many convoluted, unrelated little tidbits in that mammoth bill. Well, it bothered me when I heard Huxley, or one of them, predict that people would end up not only marching willingly into a type of slave state, but that they'd actually ask for it. He was right.

Whether this is evolution or design, I am not sure. It is such a subtle process that involves emotion and psychology that there seems no way to stop it. Considering the fact that people on every strata of power do, and have done, great harm to others, there is always a way to avoid the subject and point to past transgressions of one sort or another, then claim the new bold tyrannical move will fix it. But it doesn't seem to do anything but further limit freedom and mobility. That growth of that syndrome accelerated exponentially since the inception of TSA and Homeland security.

I'm all for defense and squashing the bad guys, but not for reverting to a condition of existing by permission of the state rather than vice versa. Never sure whether visa versa or vice versa is more correct.

Lots of people are short sighted idiots, or lack the nature not to steal and cheat if they can by with it, so I am not for no law whatsoever. I do think something is wrong when police culture is generally one of an "us against them" mentality, where the world of non-cops is seen as the enemy, or the prey. That is the fault of the way the system and laws have been constructed.

I've often been on the receiving end of great disdain when I suggest a distaste for the over-regulated nature of things, and the boot-on-your-neck nature of current governments. The compulsive devil's advocates always pretend I'm for chaos and anarchy. I almost am for the latter, but not quite. That is like me pretending that they are for central control of all industry, resources, personal choices, everything. Ooops. I guess some people actually are. Odd that the one extreme sounds more radical than the other.

Giving Anarchy a Bad Name

It is a bit of subtle salesmanship when officials and others decry amoral behavior and violence in the streets as "lawlessness and anarchy". An overly high percentage of violence and abuse of human rights is perpetrated by the lawmakers and enforcers, themselves. So, being of the law does not really define justice and peace.

Maybe it is because governing is one of the oldest professions, possibly as old as the "oldest profession". Certainly kindred in spirit, although I consider good honest prostitution far nobler, and less destructive. It is always about money and power.

So, it makes sense that every effort has been made to convince people that government, people and groups who rule others, are holy and necessary and are more worthy of trust and reverence than any other human institution. They share this with religion when they have to. Or, like in the MidEast, the sort of meld the two entities. What a great thing. That's the worst insanity ever.

Diversity be damned, hard core muslims are lunatics. Don't give me the "what about Christians? blablabla". First off, Christians aren't the topic here, and secondly they aren't the ones who won't let women drive, ar actually crucifying people by nailing them to trees, stoning people to death, etc.

Any religion shoved at me with any force annoys the hell out of me. But I will flatly say, I think Islam is bloody insanity, a cult, and like just about any overly superstitious, rite ridden faith, I am opposed to any public accommodation of the insanity. Everyone can do what they want on their own time. If you want to drive my cab and you won't take service animals and have other taboos which screw with my clients, then you are out of here. There should be no credence to given to the sneaky lying groups like muslim association that sues everyone, knowing they are playing us against ourselves. Killing us with our misguided notions of tolerance, of which they have zero.

OK, back to anarchy. These thugs who use that title, organize in groups, and spray paint the logo are not anarchists. They are amoral disrupptionists. Pure misanthropes and unforgivably selfish.

The latest thing is to disrupt the republican and democratic conventions. No real goal, just do things which cause harm to innocent people because the parties are bad. Yea, I get it. Hell, I think most police departments are bad. That doesn't give me the right to stop traffic, throw bottles, damage businesses and private property--or public.

It goes back to that school of reasoning which argues by saying "what about..blablabla". Like I say, you are messing up lives in unknown ways when you stop traffic---someone may be minutes from dying and almost to the hospital, who knows--and you say, "What about the dirty corporations and politicians not paying their fare share, what about Bush, the Gulf of Tonkin, Mary Jo Kopekne, blablabla?"

Begging the damned question. It is unreal. That is how the tyrants manage to keep strangling the country with more and more laws and regulations. The real question is whether the majority, the government or anyone has the right to regulate certain aspects of life and to decide the fate of certain resources. That question is ignored and instead people debate whether or not regulating the size of a stupid drink will help in "our battle against obesity". It is insane!

The way things are going, be glad ou are fat. If this crowd gets another four, we are in for some lean times ahead. We probably are anyway, but I think the full tilt bolshevik plan which modern democrats espouse is less palatable than the bolshevik lite we may get with republicans. I'm ignoring the dumbass talk regarding abortion, etc. I don't think abortion or birth control, or health care for that matter ought to be paid by tax money--in most cases. That's about it.

But I don't think much should be paid with tax money. As far as regulating abortion and morning after, before or whatever contraception, that's foolish. But come on. Convincing people that if it isn't provided by government that then there is no hope and that they are being abused---that is pandering, condescending and indicates a desire to have a paternalistic/maternalistic parenting government. Excuse me while I vomit in an officially approved bio bag which I have no idea how to discard in a legal manner.

I'm not anarchist, but I do believe that there are models of life which include only the slightest governmental presence which might be preferable. Anarchist just means no government. No ruler. It is a propaganda device used over a great deal of time which has conditioned us to define anarchy as chaos. You don't think the proliferation of gangs, of never ending wars in parts of the world we can't even name, the increased incidence of terrorism, mass shootings, goddam beheadings---never heard of such things a few decades ago---is a sign of chaos? All that has come with the exponential growth of governmental powers in the western world. With that comes involvements in affairs outside our borders which defy analysis of any real validity by most laymen because we have no idea what the truth or the whole story is.

People have their theories and ideas but many do not hold much water. Afghanistan and Iraq are about oil? I don't see how that is happening. If oil is such a goal, why is China taking more advantage of offshore drilling in the Gulf than we are? If we want oil, we have it. It was a blunder to let the Arab oil become nationalized over there. But, that's what you get when you aren't careful when you go doing stuff in someone else's yard. Chances are, if you don't get things straight up front, they'll want it all if you strike gold.

So, if anarchy is senseless crime and chaos, it seems that half the world or more has been run by official governing bodies which must have been anarchists for many years.

Don't be fooled by the logo. Those selfish creeps are merely Aberrant creatures. That is what the A stands for. It is perfectly OK to throw bricks at them, or to shoot them if you see them harassing strangers and tearing up property. You may be better off using a blowgun, stun gun, or paint balls because, in our wisdom, it is not OK to violate the rights and freedoms of those who threaten your life and property.

I think they should be beaten for false advertising. Just because one doesn't appreciate edicts from legal bishops and priests does not mean he is supposed to have a logo and an inexplicable disregard for the rights of others.
Aberrants, not anarchists.

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