Hey, was that the blogger-in-chief (BIC) on CNBC’s “Power Lunch” yesterday with Bill Griffeth? Yep, they called to see if somebody would come on and talk about the future of organized labor. The jumping off point was the Delphi bankruptcy and the challenges labor faces as are result. Opposite the BIC was Greg Tarpinian of the Labor Research Association, an articulate guy from the new Change to Win Coalition. A few points:
— First, in response to the growing hysteria over the “pension crisis” we had to remind them that there are over 30,000 pension plans in this country, covering over 40 million people. Almost all are in good shape, but the ones that aren’t make big news.
— Do we need a labor movement in this country? Heck, yes. Every democracy needs a labor movement. Only Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam and China have no labor movement.
— Our labor movement, however, has become a political movement and has taken their eye off the ball of member service and is intent on pouring their members’ money down the political rat hole.
— Finally, Greg Tarpinian raised the issue of outsourcing, but we had to point out that the auto industry is hardly the one you want to use to make the outsourcing point, given the enormous amount of insourcing — assembly, manufacturing, parts suppliers, etc — that has occurred here in the US.
All in all, a good go-’round, and fun. Thanks to Bill Griffeth for conducting a good interview and to Greg Tarpinian for being a worthy opponent.
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