Tuesday, December 27, 2005

"The Strike Before Christmas"

These are the responses to my December 23 article, "The Strike Everybody Lost; How to Stop the Next One." Thanks to all, please continue to provide us with your feedback.


  1. I don't want to argue the merits of your position on the transit strike. Just say, I largely disagree.

    However, you should remember that back in the old days, the city ran the subways. The mayor was responsible. Generally, a good mayor, like Bob Wagner, did it judiciously and well. But all the money to settle contracts ... arrived at mostly around a bargaining table ... came from the state. In fact, many of the people closest to that situation, adamately held that the 1966 transit workers strike should have been laid in Governor Rockefeller's lap. In any event, it was his action releasing money to the city that paid for the settlement of the TWU's first city-wide transit strike.

  2. Let me congratulate you on the improvement you have shown in being fair to the TWU, and getting a start on letting the MTA have it. Sleaze is sleaze no matter who delivers it, and the strike could have been avoided if the MTA had not sought to save 20 million with such a poorly timed pension proposal. I will not take any credit for helping you renew your membership among the dclining group of NY's liberal-minded people for I am sure many others took you to task as I did. Welcome back.

  3. I think the press could have done more useful reporting by doing some analysis instead of just printing the press releases put out by the union and elected leaders and interviewing the suffering public. How about some analysis of what the demands meant. How much is 2% vs 6% of pay of their pay for pension? How does the guaranteed job of the TWU compare to the thousands of layoffs to be suffered by the AWU at GM? How do the benefits of the TWU compare to other trades? Instead they put out misinformation which required a press blackout so the negotiations could be completed.

  4. Thank you for your interesting commentary on the personalities on the MTA
    > side of the strike. Mr. Kalikow was also chairman of the Board of the late
    > Institute for Cancer Prevention, formerly American Health Foundation. The
    > non-profit IfCP went bankrupt in 2004 following egregious overspending by
    > its Director. It was until then the only NIH 'Institute' charged with
    > developing preventive therapies for cancer. Kalikow may have been chairman
    > when a Dr. Nixon was hired, who renamed the institute, was certainly
    > chairman while Nixon mismanaged it into bankruptcy.
    > If Kalikow's stewardship of IfCP is any indicator of his general
    > competence, we are still in serious trouble re. transit

  5. Commissioner Stern, we need to make NY a Right to Work State and ban public employee unions. I work in the private sector and my tax dollars pays for there salaries and benefits, thus they are using my tax dollars to lobby government and extort ridiculous benefits. This will solve the problems

  6. Anonymous10:52 AM

    TWU extortion wins again.

    As in 1980, the illegal strike by the transit workers union has proved successful, with workers gaining above average wage increases and the MTA agreeing to excessive pension rules for the future.

    Not one board member of the MTA can claim any consideration for the transit riding public in New York City.

    This cave-in by the MTA will not bring peace with public unions, but will instead justify future extortion blessed by state and city elected officials. The Taylor Law is useless.

    Give up New Yorkers, you've lost again.

  7. Anonymous1:00 PM

    thank god we finally got you out of our government, "starquest." The city is a better place without you. It's too bad the blogosphere has to be polluted with you, but at least your pseudointellectual hackishness and thuggery are out of city gov't. Interesting that on Brian Lehrer's show you feel free to pontificate about the racial element of the strike without ever mentioning your own problems in this regard. That's okay; we remember it. As does any black or hispanic that ever had the misfortune to work with "starquest" (oh, also, the nickname thing isn't as cute as you think it is). With any luck, the world will soon join NYC gov't in being rid of you. And it will be a better place.