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Boeing bashes IAM, scaring America, Chamber’s dirty work…

Wednesday, June 15, 2016




► In today’s Seattle Times — Boeing faults Machinists union for opposing Norwegian Air expansion — Boeing on Tuesday weighed in for the first time with a definitive public statement on a hot political controversy in the aviation world — Norwegian Air International’s attempt to expand routes in the U.S. — choosing to use the issue as a stick to try to beat back the Machinists union’s efforts to organize its assembly plants in South Carolina.

► From the ALPA — #DenyNAI – Learn why — The CEO of Norwegian Air International wants to bring the maritime industry’s flag-of-convenience business model to the U.S. airline industry. If unopposed, this scheme will decimate our airlines and eliminate U.S. aviation jobs. It also raises serious safety questions. Learn more here and join the effort to #DenyNAI.


ALSO at The Stand — Deny NAI: We must protect open, fair aviation competition (by Reps. Rick Larsen, Peter DeFazio and Frank LoBiondo — May 5, 2016)

► In today’s Washington Post — Boeing nears landmark deal to sell airliners to Iran — Iran is set to unveil terms of a multibillion-dollar deal to purchase about 100 commercial passenger planes from Boeing in what would be the biggest sale of U.S. goods to Iran since the easing of economic sanctions last October. Although financing arrangements are not complete, the historic agreement is likely to cover deliveries and services over nearly a decade at a cost of more than $17 billion.

787-secret► From Al Jazeera — Boeing stymied staff from talking to regulators — Boeing made its engineers sign a non-disclosure agreement that led some to refuse to discuss details of 787 Dreamliner designs with U.S. government regulators, new documents reveal. After signing the agreement, Boeing engineers told FAA officials they were banned from speaking about specific features of the 787 passenger plane, triggering a government probe.




► In today’s News Tribune — Last-minute legal stay means no jail for state hospital CEO – yet — Pierce County Court Commissioner Craig Adams granted a last-minute request for a stay of his June 10 order that required hospital CEO Cheryl Strange to report to jail Wednesday. The dispute stems from a continuing shortage of beds at Western State, and the byproduct of patients in need of treatment being detained in hospital emergency rooms. The practice is known as “psychiatric boarding.”

capitol-wa-flag► In today’s Seattle Times — Western State’s CEO jailing: Fault is instead with Legislature (letter by Tim Osborn, President of NAMI Washington) — The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Washington does not support the single-bed certification rule created by the state to address psychiatric boarding, as that is a Band-Aid that does not solve the critical issue of the lack of psychiatric inpatient beds. But that problem does not rest on the shoulders of Strange; it rests on the shoulders of the state Legislature. Washington must fund and provide access to a comprehensive array of services for people living with mental illness.




► From KUOW — Clinton, Sanders discuss party unity, path forward against Trump — Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders met Tuesday evening to try to start healing wounds from their long, bitter primary battle. Both campaigns reported that the two congratulated each other on their primary runs and talked about how they could unify the party against “the dangerous threat that Donald Trump poses to our nation.”

trump-fear► In today’s NY Times — Trump responds to Orlando attack by exploiting fear, not easing it — Donald Trump has intensified the power of fear in presidential politics by demonizing an entire religious group. And he has expanded the use of that power by stirring up fear in the aftermath of national traumas, like the San Bernardino, Calif., attack and now the Orlando shooting, that traditionally elicited measured and soothing responses from political leaders.

► From Huffington Post — Some Republicans can’t even bear to acknowledge Trump’s existence — Some claimed they had simply not heard Trump’s speech the day prior in which he doubled down on his proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States.

► In today’s Washington Post — Top Republicans join Obama in denouncing Trump’s words — House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) denounced Trump for trying to rally support for his anti-Muslim policies.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Oh, but he still plans to vote for him. Because, you know, he’s a Republican.

► From The Hill — Union leaders see no evidence of migration to Donald Trump — Local union leaders across the Rust Belt are voicing confidence that their members will stick with Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in the race for the White House.

voter-id-wisc► In today’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch — The real Voter ID agenda (by Richard Trumka and) — Voter ID and similar disenfranchisement bills have nothing to do with protecting the integrity of the ballot. Instead, they are a blatant, cynical attempt to rig elections in favor of one political party… Voter fraud in the United States is virtually nonexistent. An individual is more likely to be struck by lightning than impersonate a voter at the polls. So without a problem to fix, these laws are being adopted to prevent legitimate votes.




► In today’s NY Times — U.S. Chamber out of step with its board, report finds — None of the 108 board members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce came forward to explicitly support the lobbying group’s policies on tobacco and climate change, according to a new report from a group of eight Senate Democrats, including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

man-with-blindersEDITOR’S NOTE — The same is true of our state’s “Chamber,” the Association of Washington Business. For example, its board and the corporations they represent (Microsoft, AT&T, Costco, etc.) don’t publicly support Tim Eyman’s tax-cutting budget-strangling initiatives, but AWB has. It’s an open question whether these companies’ refusal to rein in their own right-wing lobbying group constitutes tacit approval. By letting the AWB and Chamber do their dirty work, these corporations get plausible deniability to protect their brands.

► From Buzzfeed — 5,000 Macy’s staff set to begin strike on Wednesday — About 5,000 Macy’s workers at five New York stores, including the chain’s Herald Square flagship, plan to walk off the job on Wednesday. The employees voted to authorize a strike earlier this month after their contract negotiations stalled over the increasing cost of healthcare benefits, changes to pay structure, and new holiday work requirements.

► From ESPN — Working class hero? Tom Brady aims for the Supreme Court — Tom Brady’s case is no longer about deflated footballs or a four-game suspension — it’s about the fundamental rights of American workers and a dangerous threat to industrial peace in America. At least that’s the case Brady and his new lawyer are not only trying to make but sell to the U.S. Supreme Court. To do so, they’ve assembled an all-star team of labor leaders, scholars and experts.

menards-john► From Gawker — How a major company bombards its employees with right-wing propaganda — No one suffers the brunt of John Menards, Jr.’s conservative beliefs more directly than his own employees. Menards’ virulently anti-union policies stand out even in an industry full of anti-union corporations. The company was recently sanctioned by the NLRB for violating labor laws after it was revealed that the company had required managers to sign contracts stating that they would forfeit more than half of their pay if employees formed a union on their watch. But Menards is not satisfied with merely having a non-union work force. Documents provided to us by a Menards employee show that the company conducts what can only be described a systematic indoctrination into conservative political beliefs, under the guise of its “In-Home Training Program.”

EDITOR’S NOTE — The WSLC supported state legislation called the Worker Privacy Act that would have allowed employees to opt out of such nonsense without fear of retaliation, but it failed to pass even when Democrats controlled the state House, Senate and Governor’s office.




orlando-ribbon-sm► From Faith Action Network — Statement in response to the tragedy in Orlando — As communities of faith, we also have a vital role to play in the days to come. We are called to care for those who grieve, and to denounce gun policies that continue to facilitate mass violence. We are also called to work to undo the legacy of homophobia and heterosexism that inspired this hate crime — a legacy in which many faith traditions have been complicit, sometimes even responsible. We begin to do this work by publicly welcoming, affirming, and celebrating LGBTQ people. At the same time, we must also be attentive to the way that grief and righteous anger can overflow into prejudice and misplaced fear.


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