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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Latest Pamplin story on the ATU/Trimet is troubling propaganda

Those of us that follow this material know that Pamplin has become the biggest mouthpiece for Trimet in the mainstream media printed press.
And now they have a brand new story titled: TriMet's new route and this article actually tells us a lot about what's happening.

First of all it becomes apparent what the 14 day waiting period is all about. I would wager that Trimet requested this so as to give them time to whip up the propaganda, such as is found in this article. 

 Now lets examine this article closely:


A remarkable scene unfolded last Wednesday in a TriMet meeting room.
Amalgamated Transit Union 757 Bruce Hansen was warmly greeted at the annual retreat held by the regional transit agency’s board of directors. Hansen smiled as he exchanged greetings with TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane and the board members, who treated him like an old friend. 

This is extremely troubling propaganda. It suggests that there was never any problems with the union and the damage done to union members. If Bruce is being 'treated like an old friend' we all got problems.

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  But by the time Hansen walked into the room, news had broken that the two sides had reached a tentative agreement that promised to usher in a new era in their relationship. 

They forgot to leave out the part where the members must approve it before anything else happens not sure what this 'new era' stuff is supposed to mean. Makes pretty good propaganda though

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“It’s very positive to have a contract to vote on,” said Hansen, who was accompanied by ATU International Vice President John Costa, who sat in on all the mediation sessions (since May 8) that led to the tentative agreement.
“It’s a win-win for everyone,” said TriMet Deputy General Manager Robert Nelson. 

It's not possible for it to be a 'win win' for everyone so that is total BS propaganda

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Resolving the labor dispute cannot happen soon enough, Portland pollster Adam Davis told the board earlier in the day. Davis, co-founder of DHM Research, said the bitter fight had helped pull TrIMet’s public approve down from 77 percent in 2007 to 66 percent
today. 

That's an amazing admission and gives us an understanding why Trimet has been pumping out so much propaganda lately. Every day we get some new advertising gimmick coming out of the Trimet marketing department.

Personally I think the credit should be given to social media especially twitter which has seen the growth of literally dozens of individual activists  acting as an  movement with out any leader. The amount of citizens taking to twitter to discuss Trimet  is just amazing actually.
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According to Davis and others who made presentations to the board, public confidence in TriMet is more important today than ever before. They said TriMet is needed to fulfill such regional goals as finding millennials jobs and increasingly dense development to preserve farm and forest lands.  

Oh my lord just read that passage a couple of times. How is Trimet going to find anyone a job (unless its working at Trimet) and increasingly dense development to preserve farm and forest lands? What the hell? Pure buzz word propaganda
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Wade Lang, an official with the company planning to build more than 1,500 new apartments in the Lloyd District, said transit was essential for attracting tenants.
“You don’t have to own a car to live here. Having options right outside your door makes it marketable,” said Lang, a vice president and regional real estate manager with American Assets Trust. The San Diego company’s first project, Hassalo on Eighth, is being built at the intersection of the eastside MAX and Portland Streetcar lines. 

This pretty much validates the "Trimet is a development agency" point of view and that is very clear in the article 
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The day started with TriMet being praised by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, who came to town and offered a spirited defense of projects like the Portland-to-Milwaukie light-rail line a model for the rest of the country.

We've  heard this forever. That for some reason Light rail, Street cars and boxy apartments all around these lines are a 'model for the country'. Personally I don't believe it. Who actually believes that should be the 'model for the country'? Government officials believe it that's who.
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The praise was in marked contrast to the widespread
criticism TriMet received when it raised fares, cut back service, and pressed union members to begin paying part of their health care costs during the Great Recession. 

What the Tribune left out of course is how Mcfarlane snuck himself  a raise while making everybody else pay more. And we have examined the claim that the 'great recession' was to blame for the cuts and dispute that. OPAL also disputed the need for all the cuts and 2 years later they were proven correct.
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Those concerns are easing now that the economy is recovering and the current labor contract, which was imposed by a state-approved arbitrator, have begun to get health care costs under control. The future will look much brighter if union members approve a new contract that continues those reforms. 

This is the biggest hint of what happened in the so called negotiations, a complete capitulation to Trimet on the issue of medical coverage. While employees can afford the 80/20 proposal it devastates the current retirees. The way the voting occurs, it excludes all retirees from having any decision in weather this contract gets approved or not.

So it becomes obvious what's going on here. If the members don't pass this 'do or die' contract then the blame will fall completely on the shoulders of the union members.

The problem with democracy is simple, once you have a majority you have the ok to stomp on the rights on the minority.

The only way I could support this contract is if Trimet halted the cuts to retirees at the GABA level. Any additional cuts to retirees retirement cannot be supported.

I don't like any of this