It seems that talks between the ILA and East Coast/Gulf ports have broken down
Labor negotiations covering U.S. ports from Maine to Texas have taken a sharp turn for the worse, and the International Longshoremen’s Association now says there could be a strike — the first in decades — in less than six weeks.
The current contract covering Charleston and the other ports expires Sept. 30. Maritime businesses fear that shippers and their clients could start diverting cargo to West Coast ports as the date draws closer.
Let the millions of unemployed people, the millions of people who are working 3 jobs to make their mortgage payment, the veterans whose benefits Obama wants to reduce, let all these folks see Obama cater to these guys
“ILA workers are among the most highly compensated workers in the country, on average receiving $124,138 a year in wages and benefits, which puts them ahead of all but 2 percent of all U.S. workers. They earn an average hourly wage of $50, more than double the $23.19 average for all U.S. union workers. They also pay no premiums and minimal co-pays and deductibles for a healthcare plan that is better than most U.S. employers provide their workers.
“At the Port of New York and New Jersey, 34 ILA members make over $368,000 a year in wages and benefits; one of every three makes over $208,000 a year – not including annual bonuses based on the weight of container cargo. These “container royalties” totaled $232 million in 2011 – or an average of $15,500 for ILA workers on the East and Gulf coasts.
Of course the ILA makes it very clear that they expect Obama’s full support
It should be noted parenthetically that the health care benefits of ILA workers are those which all Americans will enjoy when the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented.
I’m not sure “enjoy” is the word most people would use, and if you think that Obamacare will give us all ILA-level health care, well, there’s a bridge a couple of hundred yards from where I’m sitting that I’ll give you a good price on.
The ILA press release gives a beautifully clear insight into their mindset, however; look at this paragraph
When containerization started the ILA was faced with a huge displacement of worker whose jobs were eliminated by the ominous steel boxes. The ILA was at a crossroad – allow containerization to be implemented or refuse. The ILA agreed to allow containerization to flourish but negotiated a fee based on the weight of each loaded container to be used for annual payments to the longshore workers whose job opportunities had been compromised due to containerization. As the number of containers being handled increased, the negotiated payment for each worker increased. Rather than being an annual bonus for each worker, as USMX suggests, this payment is compensation for the job opportunities lost by permitting containerization.
Containerization was one of the most important advances in shipping, no, I’m willing to say it was THE most important advance in shipping in the 20th century (you remember the 20th Century: it was so good Joe Biden thinks we are still in it). It led to unparalleled growth in efficiency and secure, safe, low cost shipping over sea and the subsequent flow onto truck and rail and thence direct to your store, creating millions upon millions of job opportunities in economies around the world.
And look at the ILA’s attitude towards it: they “allowed” it to happen once they got their protection money.
Yep, let ‘em strike. Expose this to the voters right before the election.