City on Strike - Page 6
Old 07-28-2009, 04:41 PM   #101 (permalink)
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some terms of the deal are starting to come out. some good things, some bad, but clearly not all concessions wre taken off the table by the city. if nothing esle, at least this is a huge win for the city and for taxpayers going forward:

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The workers' sick-day plan proved a significant stumbling block in negotiations. Under the current contract, workers can bank up to 18 sick days a year and cash them out at retirement.

By denying that option to new hires, the city has capped an unfunded liability that would cost $250-million in the worst-case scenario as older workers cash out unused sick days when they resign or retire.
due criticism is owed to lastman and his boys for agreeing to this ludicrous unfunded and unpredictable liability in the first place many years ago.
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Old 07-28-2009, 04:58 PM   #102 (permalink)
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Yes, I've read that, so at least something has been achieved...

The way the unions decided to handle the picketing, and especially the wait times they've imposed by illegally blocking entrances to the public facilities still rattles me, though. I won't forget the humiliation and neither will anyone who had to wait in that line, I promise you that.

I want the city to stop employing union members ASAP. I hope the next mayor will start the phasing-out of union labour, 'cause that's going to take a while. I, as their employer, refuse to negotiate with terrorists from now on.
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Old 07-28-2009, 04:59 PM   #103 (permalink)
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no chance mike. especially with that kind of rhetoric.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:02 PM   #104 (permalink)
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Ya Mike....idiot...Unions are awesome...look what they did for Auto Industry in NA.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:15 PM   #105 (permalink)
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no chance mike. especially with that kind of rhetoric.
We will see, won't we?

Unions believed for years that their cushy deals with GM and Chrysler are going to guarantee their job security and their pensions - but guess what happens after company goes through bankruptcy? That's right.

As for the rhetoric - I call it like I see it. Anyone who threatens me personally and makes me do something against my will is a criminal - look it up. If they do it to someone in whose employ they are supposed to be, they absolutely do not deserve to have that job.

And, finally, on unions in general: what are they doing in public sector? I mean, the whole notion of the unions was born to protect the proletarians from the capitalist wolves (or "robber barons" or whatever ghosts lurking around Europe chose to fight at that time), right? So, who is CUPE fighting then? Me? The rest of Toronto population, many of whom live well below poverty line and don't have jobs that even remotely approach their flock's in salary or benefits?

Like I said before - the unions must go. Members can go work for private contractors who will be afforded tenders like garbage collection on a basis of market competition. And the biggest joke of them all - the police union, the real reason no one was there to protect my rights to enter public property - must go as well. Police are paid to serve and protect the people of Toronto, not their union brethren!
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:25 PM   #106 (permalink)
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you two are hilarious.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:28 PM   #107 (permalink)
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you two are hilarious.
I am glad you are enjoying it.

What's really interesting is that you've chosen not to debate a single point I've been making, nor have you answered a single question I've asked.

At least humour me with this one: do you live in Toronto and, if so, have you had to wait in line to dump your garbage?
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:39 PM   #108 (permalink)
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And, apparently, there are some hilarious people in the national media as well:

Militant labour's death rattle

Enjoy.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:41 PM   #109 (permalink)
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q1: yes.

q2: no.

am i a union representative all of a sudden? why is it up to me to answer all of your questions?

what am i supposed to debate? i'm not hugely pro-union or anti-city government. i see the point of both sides in this strike - both have legitimate arguments. see my first post in this thread for my initial reaction. in general, i think unions have their place, but i don't think they belong everywhere. i'm a pragmatist, and i understand that they exist and that someone ranting and yelling isn't going to do anything to effect whether or not there are public sector unions. again, what am i supposed to debate? do you see me as a foil?

i have a fair bit of experience here as i am management in a union environment. i have been in collective bargaining situations, bargaining against union demands, and i know quite a bit about what is asked, what is possible and how the negotiations tend to work. i also know that unions aren't going anywhere, and in many instances that is a good thing. one union is different from the next, so i'm not interested in a debate that lumps them all in together.

benzo and i have been over this many times and my views on uinions are documented in a few threads on this site. i don't feel i need to get into this again, especially with someone that clearly is reacting from emotion. i don't mean that as an insult, although you will likely take it that way. i just mean that you have clearly been frustrated by a recent situation and our points of view are probably so far apart that a long-winded discussion isn't going to go anywhere. debtaes with emotional responses are not usually informative or fun, imo. thus my earlier point about rhetoric.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:45 PM   #110 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MikeToronto View Post
And, apparently, there are some hilarious people in the national media as well:

Militant labour's death rattle

Enjoy.
indeed there are.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:58 PM   #111 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'trane View Post
q1: yes.

q2: no.

am i a union representative all of a sudden? why is it up to me to answer all of your questions?

what am i supposed to debate? i'm not hugely pro-union or anti-city government. i see the point of both sides in this strike - both have legitimate arguments. see my first post in this thread for my initial reaction. in general, i think unions have their place, but i don't think they belong everywhere. i'm a pragmatist, and i understand that they exist and that someone ranting and yelling isn't going to do anything to effect whether or not there are public sector unions. again, what am i supposed to debate? do you see me as a foil?

i have a fair bit of experience here as i am management in a union environment. i have been in collective bargaining situations, bargaining against union demands, and i know quite a bit about what is asked, what is possible and how the negotiations tend to work. i also know that unions aren't going anywhere, and in many instances that is a good thing. one union is different from the next, so i'm not interested in a debate that lumps them all in together.

benzo and i have been over this many times and my views on unions are documented in a few threads on this site. i don't feel i need to get into this again, especially with someone that clearly is reacting from emotion. i don't mean that as an insult, although you will likely take it that way. i just mean that you have clearly been frustrated by a recent situation and our points of view are probably so far apart that a long-winded discussion isn't going to go anywhere. debtaes with emotional responses are not usually informative or fun, imo. thus my earlier point about rhetoric.
I feel a need to clarify some points:

1. I wasn't trying to pick a fight, and especially not with you or anyone personally, no matter what my posts "sounded" like. Of course, you don't have to answer any of my questions.

2. On the other hand, emotional or not, frustrated or otherwise, I do believe my questions are legitimate ones. I was looking for someone who could possibly make sense of what has transpired in Toronto over the past 36 days. It was probably a folly to assume that someone could do this on a basketball forum, but we have enough members who are both smart and well-informed, and of different political views to hope, no?
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:17 PM   #112 (permalink)
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ok, then, here's my brief take on what has transpired -

past city governments have given in to ludicrous union demands like the banking of sick days for cashout. this has resulted in unfunded and unpredictable liabilities. there are other examples besides the sick days, but it has been a hot button issue, so i'll stick with it for now. i don't blame the unions for asking for them, since that's what collectivity is all about. they advocate for what is good for them and it's up to the employer not to get suckered into a bad deal.

now that we are in a financial crunch, mayor miller is doing what he can to reduce the future fiscal risk under which the city must operate. he wants lower pay increases and decrease unfunded liabilities. this is actually a conservative approach, and a sound fiscal one at that, so i'm continually surprised that the right bashes him for doing exactly what he should be doing.

the union doesn't want to give up these benefits. i wouldn't either if i were them. imagine that you take a job under particular circumstances, and you plan your retirement accordingly. imagine then that your employer decides to just take those circumstances away. this might leave you quite short in terms of your retirement plans. not a huge deal for young employees, but potentially a massive one for older staff. i would be pretty pissed off if this happened to me. my reaction would be - 'hey, you paid me this in the first place, that's your mistake, but you can't take my retirement away when we both agreed on it.'

so i understand why the union doesn't want to give that up, but i also understand why the gov't can't continue with it.

and so i think that the end result is a pretty good one - they come to an agreement where it won't be taken away from those to whom it was promised, but that no new employees will get the perk. that's a real-world pragmatic fix.

that it took 36 days is a problem, but none of us were sitting inside the room, and we have no idea what happened to cause such a huge waste of time. clearly there were compromises to be made. that sad part is that they didn't take a sense of urgency and get this deal done before the union went into a strike position in the first place.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:54 PM   #113 (permalink)
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Coltrane, I realize what were the pre-conditions for the strike and what both sides tried to accomplish. My biggest beef, in case it has been unclear after my initial post, was with the tactics the union resorted to in order to, or so they thought, put pressure on the city, and specifically with the way they've impeded private citizens' access to the dump sites. Further to this, I was absolutely outraged with the reaction of both police and city staff to my demands for help in bringing them to order/justice.

I do believe that the unions' existence in both City of Toronto workers and Toronto Police played a major role in the way these events unfolded. Because of that, I feel justified in saying that I, personally, have been humiliated and cheated by the very people who are being paid to serve me as a member of public and that dismantling of public service unions would prevent these "conflicts of interests" from happening in the future.

Last edited by MikeToronto; 07-28-2009 at 06:57 PM.
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:42 PM   #114 (permalink)
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what they did was illegal, a point i made earlier in this thread. the city has responded by pursuing legal action, another point i mead earlier in this thread. your ire should be directed at the police who did nothing to prevent it (which, it seems, it is, at least in part). how dismantling public sector unions does anything to impact that is beyond me... you could similarly make the case that all bars should be shut down because a few of them let in underage drinkers and the police don't enforce that, but that would be silly because most bars don't do that and, again, the problem lies with enforcement.

in the end, you lost a couple of hours and got into a confrontation with a loudmouth asshole. that happens in rush hour traffic everyday. i don't think it's that big a deal. it's not right, certainly, but it's also not sufficient cause to call for the abolition of public sector unions and the labeling of them as terrorist organizations.
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Old 07-28-2009, 09:19 PM   #115 (permalink)
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I think the Bard can best put this one to rest

"A plague on both your (read "their") houses"
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Old 07-29-2009, 12:03 AM   #116 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'trane View Post
in the end, you lost a couple of hours and got into a confrontation with a loudmouth asshole. that happens in rush hour traffic everyday. i don't think it's that big a deal. it's not right, certainly, but it's also not sufficient cause to call for the abolition of public sector unions and the labeling of them as terrorist organizations.
Once again, a clarification, since my points seem to be lost in a clamour:

1. The reason I am calling for ridding the public sector of the unionized workers is twofold: they employ "terrorist" tactics by holding public at large for ransom and they stick together, thus impacting their usefulness to the public. In this particular case, I'll stipulate that a non-unionized police force would respond to this issue and remove the people blocking off the public facilities instead of "staying out of it". What do you think would happen if I got together with a bunch of buddies and decided to block the entrance to the City Hall and let in one person each 15 minutes until our demands for, say, legalization of prostitution in Toronto are met? How long will it take the cops to take us all to jail?

So, once again, I want the labour laws changed to prohibit unions in public sector, period. Let them fight the capitalists, see how well that goes.

2. It was never about 2 lost hours. For me, it's about the satisfied looks on their faces after I had to give up and return to my car. It's about them knowing that they can not treat me like garbage and be employed by the corporation I support with my tax dollars at the same time.

And I don't believe for a second that it was "one loudmouth asshole". There are reports of the incidents just like mine from all over the city.
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