"First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win." ~Mahatma Gandhi
Upon what evidence do you base your conclusion? Who loses in the court of public opinion, the government agency or unionized workers? What are the ramifications from an illegal work stoppage by public employees held to a 'NO STRIKE' law? Who pays?
First of all Tom the public is not part of the equation.They are there because they have to be there. Management couldn't care less about them. The management 'owns' the system basically.Now the people that run the system, the unionized employees, make a living by 'working' the system. In other words, we actually provide a service that the public can use.The management provides no such service to the public. They exist to fatten their bank accounts and reign over the unionized employees.The system can't run without the workers. I'm not supporting a strike (which Mcfarlane has public stated he wants) I'm just stating that the 'owners' (management)of the system would fold immediately faced with a rail strike. The buses they couldn't care less, but the trains are the IMAGE OF PORTLAND, and that has much wider implications.Now the riders, they are there but have no voice in any of this.Think of it like this:The transit system is 'owned' by the management, the union employees are the "tenants" who derive livings from it.The riders are like the movie watchers, if you want to see the movie you have to go to the theater. But the people that are watching the movie have no control over what is playing in the theater. They are just there to hand over their money to the other two interests.
Of course it wouldn't happen since I believe bus and rail Operators are on the same contract/work group/union (so they cannot strike separately) but it would be an interesting experiment.And I agree - if rail striked, TriMet would end it before it started. If bus striked...well, I bet McFarlane has been figuring out how to separate bus ops and outsource it (a la Phoenix, Los Angeles, Dallas, London) so he can have his prized rail system.
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