American Airlines and Labor Union Bureaucrats: Both Dens of Evil

Surprise surprise everyone! As the economy takes a dive into the shiter for the umpteenth time, American Airlines announced that they will be cutting 900 jobs. This is pretty expected. American Airlines is getting slammed hard with the price of gas these days and with their general managerial incompetence. Remember, these are the same idiots whole stole their employee’s pensions because of “bankruptcy.” Pensions are considered part of a worker’s differed salary, so they were technically stealing, but who cares? Anyway, American is feeling the heat, and of course, the workers are taking the brunt of it. But guess who’s helping Corporate along? Why it’s the Flight Attendants Association and Transport Workers Union! Aren’t they just delightful?

Airlines and union officials said they would try to reduce layoffs through attrition or by employees voluntarily taking leaves of absence or sharing jobs…

American said it reached agreement with the union to offer voluntary measures such as leaves of absence to U.S.-based flight attendants 50 and older with at least 15 years of service. The airline said it struck a similar deal with the Transport Workers Union, which represents mechanics and bag handlers.

Because as you know, unions shouldn’t fight for their worker’s jobs, they should facilitate “profitability” i.e. getting fucked over by the boss. Of course it’s all because “times are different.” We live in an era of “increasing global competition” and we better realize that. If we don’t become better workers, then we should expect layoffs! Why can’t a flight attendant spontaneously produce gourmet meals on demand, out of thin air? Come on people, this is the technological revolution here; we need to compete with China somehow! Or at least this is what the union bureaucrats seem to think:

“We’ve all been sitting on the edge of our seats waiting for a number,” said Frank Bastien, a spokesman for the Association of Professional Flight Attendants. “Most of us were pretty pleased it wasn’t higher.”

God, what a bunch of pathetic little cowards, spokesman my ass, Frank Bastien is a shill for the ownership class. When workers organize unions that are democratic and bureaucrat free, then it’s a real representation of working people’s power. But most unions these days are woefully inadequate. They hire defeatist little tramps like Mr. Bastien and prattle on about “acceptable losses.” Especially American unions, which have layer upon layer of paid staff, many of them hired outside of the industry that their union represents! American union executives also make exorbitant salaries. Change to Win labor federation leader Andy Stern, annually earns around a quarter of a million dollars!

This is a real problem. When workers form a union, they expect that union to help them fight management. But labor has become fat with paid positions and cushy job security. These people don’t know what it’s like to work at these jobs everyday. They don’t feel the urgency of the long hours and painful work hazards. No, they are no longer workers, they have evolved into labor negotiation and organization “specialists” and they feel it’s their “job” or “skill” to deal with this stuff. When workers start taking action that’s too militant, labor “specialists” feel their positions threatened. Their job is to mediate disputes between workers and management; it’s the only justification for their cushy jobs and influence. When workers actually fight for what’s theirs, union’s bureaucrats are put in danger. Mediation is thrown out the window, and the real dynamics of class war come into relief. They start thinking: Why the workers might stop listening to us! The company might sue us! Or worse! The company will lose faith in our ability to speak for the workers! There go our jobs! By god! We need to rein these ungrateful factory grunts in!

That’s why any movement of working people needs to be a movement of working people organizations, run on bottom up democracy, not top down, undemocratic, professional driven fiefdoms. Otherwise we will see people co opted into bureaucratic positions. Suddenly fighting the boss won’t be a priority for them and the new boss will look just like the old boss.

There’s an old lefty phrase, “the people united can never be defeated.” We should make an addition to it, “the bureaucrats united will always be defeated.” So, if there any American Airlines reading remember that taking action on the job can stop these firings. Even if your union doesn’t like it, even if your union hates it, direct action will save your jobs. Stand up and fight back fellow workers, we will stand with you.

Advertisements

1 Comment

  1. Thanks for posting the article, was certainly a great read!


Comments RSS TrackBack Identifier URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s