The union has no intention of giving in to Mcfarlane in his right wing attempts to get rid of the arbitration. Jon agrees that Mcfarlanes gambit is based on the thinking that most members will not strike. (especially with so many newbies) My personal opinion based on 15 years as a Trimet bus driver is that Mcfarlane is right.
You can say many things about Mcfarlane, but one thing is obvious, he is not stupid. He knows exactly what he is doing and he has the complete support of the sock puppets and the governor. That should be obvious to Trimet watchers because if that wasn't true he would not be attempting it. And the man is a career technocrat, which means his morality compass is damaged.
I understand as much as anyone that the health care system is intent on breaking the backs of every American citizen.
Trimet, under the leadership of Tom Walsh and Fred Hansen, understood the hazardous nature of transit work and did the right thing for the employees by making decent health care part of the package. So passing the buck to former leaders is an act of cowardice on the part of our current leaders.
My personal feeling is that there needs to be some give back on this issue. But linked to something else, like higher wage for example.
But to make that the #1 issue with Trimet's financial problems is downright dishonest.
And you don't need to take my word for it, arch conservative JOHN CHARLES does an excellent job of articulating Trimet's problems.