Thursday, December 22, 2005

NY transit strike from the New Yorkers perspective

The NY transit strike has been resolved, and not to the union's liking. One of the biggest reasons it got resolved so quickly was the reaction of the NY public.

The union had figured the average working New Yorker was going to come down on their side. They miscalculated in a big way. Despite the best efforts of the far left, this did not turn into the "class struggle" the union expected. Instead, it pointed out the huge gap between private-sector working people and those who work in the public sector.

The union-controlled public sector still gets things like 100% paid medical insurance, pensions, and retirement at 55. Needless to say, not many workers in the private sector get anything like those benefits. It's difficult for a $30,000-a-year clerk at Citibank to sympathize with a transit worker who makes more money, pays less for better benefits, and drives a train around in a circle all day.

Instead of becoming a "Workers of the World, Unite!" moment, this turned into another example of why labor unions have become so irrelevant in 21st century America.

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