Thursday, March 30, 2017

Time for Doctor Bethel to retire from the Trimet board

Got a doctors note? Trimet doesn't care

Trimet security is FAIL

Forwarded to me from a current bus driver:

Hey Al something happened that made me a little mad and I wanted to forward it to you. The following is my report on Trimet Security. 

"Trimet uses paid for security to keep an eye on things and to help with general security needs. One of the important days for security is St. Patricks day when drunk people are trying to get home on transit.

Tonight I witnessed our crack security at work. Three of them at Gateway. Sat inside in the bus drivers break area and did nothing for hours. Oh they did go out for smoke breaks but they were not standing out being seen. 

A woman driver came in and complained about youths climbing on the fences where the busses drive but the security guards did nothing. Other drivers coming in with lunches had to eat them in their bus because they  were crowded out by security. 

Now I don't mind sharing facilities with security and Police but I don't like sharing facilities with people doing nothing but looking at their cell phones and reading. 

With all the drivers bring assaulted maybe we could start with making sure the hired security is doing more."

Portland Trimet makes the 'least affordable" list

Full article is HERE

Monday, March 27, 2017

Son of Hightower keeping an eye on those transit cops

Transit driver appreciation day rang hollow for most Trimet drivers

This was from a light rail operator:

Driver appreciation day how a MAX operator looked at the day. What a joke! Three boxes of fruit does not cut it. The fruit was not out before the early morning people left to do their jobs. Monday morning there still was some apples. So I got an apple. Management thinks that the early morning people return to the garage. Most of us do not. The wrong date was on the posters that were put up the drivers areas. Management says they appreciation us, their actions say speak so much louder than there words. 

 On transit appreciation day, our customers got more than I did. They got pins saying they appreciated us. I got nothing. And it was to be my day.  

Classic Trimet tweets!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Jonathan Maus at Bike Portland has been paying attention

At TriMet board meeting, GM defends his advocacy for freeway expansion projects

Cadre of Merlo Drivers request meeting with Patrick Preusser to discuss the dirty bus situation

Operators are hoping that Patrick Preusser will finally do something about the dirty bus problem

A small group of Merlo operators have requested a meeting with the new Director of Transportation, Patrick Preusser, to talk about the never ending problem with dirty buses coming out of the Merlo garage. 

"We operators are expected to show up to work and look good every day yet the company sends us out in the most pathetically dirty equipment imaginable" an operator told me who wishes to remain anonymous. 

"We've had enough of this and are hoping that Mr Preusser can do something about this situation once and for all since all of our complaints have gone unheeded for years by the current management of Trimet." says the operator

Mr Preusser granted the request and will be meeting with the operators soon

Son of Hightower pulls no punches

Thursday, March 23, 2017


Mary Fetsch has been one of the major figures of my long time blog. 
She absorbed the brunt of my disrespectful tongue and cheek jokes for as many years as this blog has existed. 
Even though she bore the brunt of my jokes she never was mean or disrespectful of me. 
This is my tribute to Mary Fetsch, a Trimet classic. 
I have a tremendous volume of material featuring Mary below the page break.
Good luck Mary, you must have a decent pension from Trimet!
You of all people deserve it!

Trimet actually did a public video of Dispatch/Control

Hard to believe actually, they are so secret about everything this is a surprise.  You see videos like this from other transit districts

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Mcfarlane's response to the public testimonies

He's got an answer for everything, as always. 
Bottom line, he makes no apologies. 
This all about the money, how can they get the money.
By making it appeal to the people driving in their cars he hopes that will swing some votes to the yes side. 
 That's my Theory  anyway. 
Recent history has not been kind to Trimet when it comes to the voters.
 Don't forget, this is not about you or me, this is about money, money to keep the capital projects monster alive.
 If you still believe that "your" government has "your" interest in mind you are seriously deluded.

Public testimonies at Todays Trimet board meeting

Neil Mcfarlane defended both the police station and the highway expansion in his comments which means it was a futile effort on the part of the community

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Latest light rail fiasco-March 19th-Control communications

Sock puppets meeting tomorrow

This has the potential to be a really great meeting with some real activists showing up to express their dissatisfaction with the way McFarlane is handling public funds over there.

The "Beasley Doctrine"

Our good brother and stalwart defender of every union member, Henry Beasley, long ago introduced what he believes would be the decent response to any assault upon one of us. Out of respect for his steadfast insistence that management adopt this, my preference is to call this the Beasley Doctrine. It calls for our immediate removal from service to facilitate our healing/recovery as well as the safety of our passengers.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Bicyclists versus trimet

Story here!

For several months now, a cabal of regional policymakers and power brokers have cooked up a plan to fund four major projects: expansions to Highway 217, Interstate 5 and Interstate 205; and the SW Corridor transit project.
Last month, McFarlane emerged from the shadows to advocate for the proposal — a move that baffled advocates who questioned why our transit agency would promote infrastructure investments that will make driving easier. In response, BikeLoudPDX is encouraging activists to speak out in opposition at TriMet’s upcoming board meeting.

Classic Trimet dispatch

This is an actual call from a driver in the field. I accentuated the audio becuase it was that insane

Trimet supports the police state

Trimet has been conducting a war on the poor of the Portland metro area since Mcfarlane was put into the head job over there. These technocrats are asking for the public to pay for a low income pass but they have used discretionary funds to build a new police station. Just disgraceful management at Trimet.

OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon and Bus Riders Unite are shocked and appalled at the announcement of an increase of $11M for police in the Trimet budget. There is no need for this expansion of the prison industrial complex. Bus riders need more accessible, affordable transportation, not more racist policing on our buses! Trimet is trying to sneak this past with little public scrutiny. Low income people and people of color are already profiled at a higher rate on public transit. Trimet’s Board is not adequately addressing rider concerns.
At the February 22nd meeting of the Trimet Board of Directors, it was revealed that the agency is prepared to spend more than $11M on a new police station and expanded fare enforcement in the next budget year. The announcement is a direct assault on low income people and people of color who depend on public transportation. Riders are angry and demand answers to the following questions:


The FY 2018 Trimet budget

These are my observations:
The full budget is HERE

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Trimet corporate welfare pork keeps rolling on

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Nick Budnicks article on fare policy at the Tribune

Read the full article HERE!
 In an attempt to cut down on confrontations, TriMet says its bus drivers should no longer deny fare evaders access to the bus, but the new policy — including a clause allowing partial payment — is causing confusion among its own drivers..........

Although the new document is dated last month, word has only lately been spreading in blogs and in Trimet circles. Al Margulies, a retired bus driver who writes about TriMet on his blog, likes the idea. Assaults on drivers have been an increasing concern for TriMet employees.
The new direction "is no more kicking people off for nonpayment of fare," he said. Because it would cut down on passenger-driver confrontations, the new policy "is a good one as far as I'm concerned."

And an anonymous TriMet bus driver's blog, From the Driver Side, states "It won't be long before the riding public rises up and refuses to pay at all. Why should it? This flip-flopping fare policy makes us all look silly, from management to operators." 

Dan Christensen on the new Trimet fare evasion policy

 Dan is on the Trimet committee dealing with operator assaults

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

In defense of the new Trimet policy regarding bus drivers and fares

I feel compelled to write this defense of the new Tri-Met policy prohibiting operators from denying boarding to fare evading riders. 
 First of all  I want to say that I am extremely surprised at how much resistance this is getting from Tri-Met operators. 
Trimet basically just made your job substantially easier and people are actually complaining about this change.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Remember Michael Ford?

Well he's been caught living the high life off the public transportation industrial complex. Just like my old pal Steve Banta. Steve got burnt at the stake, Michael gets to stick around. Depends where you live in how those excesses are handled.) They all do it, only some get busted. American public transportation is the last pork barrel. And with all pork barrels the citizens eat the shit.
Decision on transit CEO scheduled for next week

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Henry Beasley's testimony re: sb 2717

My speech from today's hearing on HB2717:

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen,

My name is Henry Beasley, and I have been a transit worker for almost ten years now.  In that ten years, there have only been maybe five attacks that received media coverage. Since 2010 there have been a combined 225 (that we know of) which includes: spitting, physical assaults, menacing or thrown objects. We have no data on how many of these attacks were plead down to simple misdemeanors.  It is not unusual to come across those who have attacked us while doing our assigned routes, which creates anxiety or diminished capacity and creates a safety hazard for us and the public.

Monday, March 6, 2017


The past two weeks, I've heard from several drivers complaining about being pulled into a manager's office and counseled about being early or late. They're splitting hairs because some upper yuckety-yuck is trying to impress the brass by stressing our "on-time performance." At the end of a sign-up, when we've all learned the route. Its "bubbles" and trouble spots. Where we'll lose time and how to make it up. Sometimes the "rules" lose out to common sense. To be disciplined for this is utterly asinine, especially when we know our jobs better than those trying to analyze what we've done for years.

Door falls off Trimet light rail vehicle-complete communications

I did a short version of the incident, this is the complete incident

Friday, March 3, 2017

Mcfarlanes pitch for 2 billion dollars-part 1

I had forgotten where Mcfarlane made this speech when I did this video and looked it up after I had finished part 1.

Here is part 1 with my comments

Abusing operators for nothing

 It appears he got to the end point "early" but that's the end of his route anyway.

 He made all of the timepoints and got to "the end" early and some white shirt is saying that's some sort of violation.

That's an absurdity. Beyond absurdity. That's the kind of nonsense Trimet operators put up with.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Trimet SW corridor propaganda examined

New Trimet dispatch Spoofs

Jay Jackson goes on permanent vacation

That's pretty much the last of the "old guard". 
Guess these new Trimet executives from out of town want their own people so all these old timers are getting their marching orders. 

Don't feel to bad for them, they all will get nice big pensions

The Deacon in Blue

On one hand, we're being told to drive safely and the schedule is secondary. Now we're being held accountable for being late. And finally, because abuse of operators has exploded the past few years, our agency is now addressing operator safety. (Of course it took two brothers petitioning our state legislature for stiffer penalties for those who assault us before the agency stepped in.) If you stress the schedule, you're not driving safely. If you concentrate on safety (which they repeatedly say is "our core value"), you save lives but are counseled about On-Time Performance. In this business, you can have one, but usually not both.