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BART Strike: Greedy workers demand a salary that might help them get by

Original post made by Mike Cherry, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on Jul 4, 2013

The Bay Area is all atwitter as it dawns on them that labor costs figure into the price of a ticket. Some on the right have suggested, therefore, that BART officials who do the public a great favor by simply eliminating labor costs. The trains may not run, but at least the public won't be scammed by workers who think they should be paid for their "labor."

On a more serious note:

In addition to asking for their first raise in five years—and rejecting what they see as inadequate offers from management on that front—the unions are asking for management to address safety issues in the negotiations, "including bulletproof glass in station booths and improved lighting in tunnels." BART management, seeking to make the workers look greedy and overpaid, dismisses the safety requests as a "smoke screen" and has exaggerated the pay levels for workers, insisting it averages $71,000 before overtime, when:

According to salary data scraped by journalist John Osborn and accumulated by the Bay Area News Group last year, average base salary for both station agents and full time train operators is around $56,000 a year. (Add to this the average overtime pay of around $10,000 for station agents and $17,000 for full time train operators.)

That salary may be well above the annual earnings for someone making minimum wage, but, as The Nation points out, consider that a recent study by the Oakland-based Insight Center for Community Economic Development found that a family of four needed about $74,341 to get by in 2011—an increase of more than $12,000 three years prior.

Comments (86)

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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 4, 2013 at 7:17 am

Regardless of the outcome for this strike, lets hope that steps are taken to make any future strikes illegal. Many major cities already have in place laws that make strikes by transit workers illegal. New York has such a law in place. A strike is illegal under the provisions of an addition to New York State Civil Service Law called the Public Employees Fair Employment Act, more commonly called the Taylor Law. It prohibits municipal workers from striking and provides alternative means for dispute resolution. The law provides for criminal penalties including imprisonment of union officials, and fines against the union and individual striking workers. Such a law here would put an end to such unrealistic demands by a union out of control.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 4, 2013 at 7:23 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

I don't believe anyone thinks safety measures are a bad--for employees and riders.

My issue, again, with what you claim here is there is no link provided to verify it. And it is a bit curious the Bay Area News Group would have the data and then report inflated salary averages. Your numbers also do not include the cost of the pension plan and benefits (acknowledging there is a small contribution--$95--by BART employees). Those costs have increased without increased contributions by employees.

At some point there will be an answer, most likely with riders footing the bill.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 4, 2013 at 7:34 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Here is one source of data: Web Link


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 4, 2013 at 7:37 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Last link--this is a list of salary costs by employee (all inclusive): Web Link


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 4, 2013 at 7:46 am

Just mention the word "unions" and Kathleen magically appears to tear down the working class. You'd make a good movie monster, Kathleen. Like Candyman, but with more malice.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 4, 2013 at 8:25 am

I'd say Kathleen magically appears with facts, compared to some others that just mouth off!


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 4, 2013 at 12:16 pm

I am not morally obliged to provide links. I have provided names of those responsible for certain info, and I've presented that info as accurately as possible.

If someone wants to look at these in greater depth, their is a wealth of info on the internet.

Also, I feel no obligation to try to convince anyone of anything when I know their ideological predispositions render them incapable of reasoned assessment of information.


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Posted by stinky
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 4, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Cherry has cherry picked a few facts, mostly incorrect. A family of four in Alameda county is self sufficient on less than $70k, and BART has said union train operators and station agents average about $71,000 in base salary and $11,000 in overtime annually. The workers also pay a flat $92 monthly fee for health insurance.

Their benefits package is far better than the average BART passenger, and costs them much less when you include fully paid pension. Don't fall for the falsehood that BART workers are underpaid, it's simply a lie.


Web Link

Web Link


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 4, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Morally obligated, I suppose not. You are just making others chase down things you claim to be true. Like the Mother Jones article you first said had noted a 10% raise for management, then you said it noted 10k in raises, then you claimed it was deleted by MJ. Forgive me for finding it difficult to believe what you post.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 4, 2013 at 4:14 pm

I know exactly what you mean, Staceleen. Why, there was once this obsessive poster who used to use sketchy means to support her claims as well. One time she insisted stridently that she knew all about Gene's Fine Foods' union because her source of gossip told her unfounded rumors. Did getting caught out make her alter her behavior? You bet it didn't! Just recently, she posted an a link to an article on pension spiking in a teacher-pension-bashing thread as if to suggest teachers were doing this, even though the article clearly stated that CalStrs never allowed such things.

That kind of stuff really makes it hard to take a person's posts seriously, don't you think?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 12:45 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

NS, we have covered both these issues before with apologies and explanations as needed on other threads. You are now just grasping at straws for lack of anything pertinent to say.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2013 at 5:52 am

The Mother Jones article that KR linked to clearly states that it had been revised. Why revised? Who knows? But the revised story does not include info about the 10% raise for management that was originally included. Again, why? Was is not completely verifiable? Was it 9% instead of 10%? Is the info now too clouded by the way numbers are fudged by those who control such numbers? I don't know.

There are those who post here who present 'information' under a false pretense that they are being objective. There are others, like myself, who present 'information' in order to link it to an openly and honestly expressed point of view.

There are some, like KR, who could hear that the BART workers are being asked to take a 70% pay cut and submit to a horsewhipping every two weeks and it wouldn't phase them one bit. "Do you have a link? Not that it would change my mind one bit. But any opportunity to throw an obstacle into the road cannot be ignored."

Unfortunately, there are those among us who are incapable of moving beyond their rather pinched ideological view. In the case of KR, as she has revealed in the past, when she was young her Daddy's truck allegedly got pooped in by some Chicago unionists, and she's never recovered from the incident. This explains her inability to think clearly about labor issues, whether this be BART workers or P-town teachers. And, to the best of my knowledge, no readers here have ever asked KR to provide links to support her rather wild personal tales.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 8:23 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

You neglect to mention that rather than just relying on Mother Jones, I posted a link to all the BART employee salaries from the Bay Area News Group. It would be easy enough to determine from prior years whether a raise was given to management.

By the way, the first person on the list made over $400,000 (and actually wasn't working anymore) and the next nine made over $300,000. There are plenty of discussion points in the data if you wanted to talk about management.

I asked that you back up your claim precisely because management taking a 10% raise while offering far less to BART employees would not be supportable, at least in my "pinched ideological view." "I think BART employees deserve a raise" is an open and honest opinion. "Management gave themselves a 10% raise" isn't opinion, and so far has been unverifiable.

The "wild personal tale" is one you have invented and have repeated over and over as a diversion from whatever the given topic is.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 5, 2013 at 8:49 am

Boy, your version of the truth is amazingly fluid, Staceleen. Hard to keep the stories straight when you've told so many contradictory fables, isn't it?

What is it about the working class that makes them such a personal insult to you, anyway? What do you imagine these union people are doing to you? Are they stealing your thoughts? Did a union person once look at you funny? Are they a little too brown, on average? Seriously, why have you been crusading for YEARS to crush the working class?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 10:22 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

This was a simple progression from Mike claiming management got a 10% raise to my trying to verify that point. It is not contradictory to think Dorothy Dugger's first year of "retirement" is outrageous. It is not contradictory to say I would not support management getting raises. And, so far, all I've said about the union members is that it appears they make a fair wage when looking at their entire compensation package.

I have no use for most union leadership and their tactics. It's based on years of working for private and public organizations having to deal with those leaders. In a few cases, the most local of those leaders were very good people who negotiated using interest based bargaining, knowledgeable understanding of budgetary issues over the long haul, and realistic expectations. They have my respect and admiration.

You know about absolute power, you get to use local commuters, airline passengers, students, and your own union members as leverage. I would liken that to a brat having a tantrum at everyone else's expense.

"a little too brown", if you actually knew me, you'd know just how stupid that statement is.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 11:21 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Perhaps the problem is in the supposition that one has to take sides. We have to be for or against, Republican or Democrat, it's black or white. I don't think there are many absolutes . . . one might say death or taxes are absolutes, but then about 95% of the world would disagree about death and a large percentage of Americans don't pay taxes, at least not on income. What I see (I cannot speak for others) is that there are truths and fabrications everywhere. Each person's life experiences make them into a slightly different whole from the next person. You can share some basic value or agreement with some or many, but not always with the same emphasis. And with any luck, we are always learning and open to factors enlightening a perspective.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2013 at 11:38 am

"You know about absolute power, you get to use local commuters, airline passengers, students, and your own union members as leverage. I would liken that to a brat having a tantrum at everyone else's expense."

Hmmmm, isn't this exactly what employers do to nonunionized workers? Use the leverage they have when they say, "Take this wage or shove it." Are not nonunionized workers also commuters, airline passengers, students, etc? But when unions use their own leverage folks like KR start talking about absolute power, hostage taking, and the like.

As for KR's 'discourse' on personal experiences, where's the link?


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Posted by SJ
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 5, 2013 at 11:53 am

Those who are not in a union have to work hard to keep their job or find a better paying job. These union members just have to show up and they get raises and will not be fired and will have a pension that is greater than most of the taxpayers. They can also call in 'sick' one day or take a vacation day and then work on one of their 'days off' and get paid overtime. Talk about a racket. The public employee unions, especially this one, are so far out of reality. We need to demand that the new trains BART wants to order are completely automated so we can get rid of the train operators. They have shown they cannot bargain in good faith so time to eliminate their jobs.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 11:56 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Employers would find themselves without employees or with their employees moving to the more competitive employer. It is, in fact, the way the majority of Americans are employed. Web Link

I doubt anyone would be confused that the latter post is just my opinion, although I can find links on absolutes if you wish.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 5, 2013 at 2:29 pm

Staceleen,

"if you actually knew me, you'd know just how stupid that statement is": Is this another of your attempts to hint something that you can later deny if you get found out? You're deniably implying that you're a person of color, right?

Or are you just saying "Why, I can't be racist--some of my best friends are colored!"?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

What this hints at is you don't know me, and those who do will know what the statement says. But to help you, yes, I'm a person of color--white. If you check, and I do mean you can check, color, race, ethnicity, and faith are just a few of those areas where absolutes are changing, and have been since people began crossing "boundaries" to marry. I look forward to the forms that eliminate questions that parse people to fit predetermined labels.

From two separate articles at MercuryNews.com :
"But Antonette Bryant, president of the local Amalgamated Transit Union, said both sides remain far part on the key issues remaining: increases to pay and worker contributions toward pensions and health care. Bryant said if neither side budges in the next month, the union strike will resume and the nation's fifth-largest rail system will once again be shuttered on Aug. 5, stranding 200,000 people who depend on BART each day."

"About 150 BART SEIU employees rallied in front of the Lake Merritt station, chanting, "They brought the trains to a halt; don't blame us, it's management's fault!"

Keeping the customer at the forefront.


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Posted by cheery mike
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Mikie says, 'If someone wants to look at these in greater depth, their is a wealth of info on the internet.

Also, I feel no obligation to try to convince anyone of anything when I know their ideological predispositions render them incapable of reasoned assessment of information.'

First of all mikie, it's 'there', not 'their'. Sorry to burst Nurse shark's bubble about union shills being so well educated and articulate. Not so much, NS...apparently, providing sources for your claims are either too much work or not something you learned in high school. Either way, you don't cast union shills in a good light.

So, mikie if you feel no obligation to convince folks with your union propaganda, why the hell are you taking up space with your ranting pro-union posts? Just askin'.....maybe you and nursing shark should get a room since you've got lots of time on your hands and lots of money to burn.


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Posted by Angry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2013 at 5:25 pm

Thank you for your links Kathleen. One more please. Front page, June 23, 2013, in Co Co Times, BayAreaNewsGroup. "Perk You Pay For: Pension Pickup". The article includes a chart, which doesn't always come up without clicking around. It shows BART is a leader in having the EMPLOYEES SHARE of pension contributions picked up by us. We pay employer share and employee share. BART 2012, employee share paid by public/employer was $17,065,224.oo. Employees simply assume zero responsibility for themselves. They are clueless to how life is in our real world.
In the real world, hard-working, COMPETENT employees get laid off when employers cannot pay them. They pay most of their own medical insurance. NOT having any pension they pay their OWN retirement savings. Tardiness or absence are grounds for firing...OH, right, NO grounds necessary. CA is an 'at will' state!!! IF an employer doesn't like your look, your smell, doesn't matter...he wants to fire you, you're fired !! Strong, competent people cope & deal, without temper tantrums, which are for SPOILED children and GREEDY PUBLIC unions...the kind of unions who suck off the public without end or shame. Some voted for Gov Brown, thinking he'd have the spine to correct his big mistake from 30+ yrs ago that is coming home to roost and is destroying Ca. Shame on him.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 5, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Two questions for you, Angry:

1. What do you mean by "in the real world?" Are you suggesting that BART workers ride unicorns and dwell in gumdrop houses in a village outside of Hogwarts? What makes "your world" more real than that of others?

2. You said "IF an employer doesn't like your look, your smell, doesn't matter...he wants to fire you, you're fired !!" Do you think it's a good thing that an employer an fire you upon a whim? That employees have no right to any sort of protection? Please explain why this is such a wonderful ideal.


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Posted by Angry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2013 at 6:51 pm

Sorry Nurse Shark is back, the most vile talker of all the union defenders.
1. Real world is where we all live like independent individual Americans, charting our own courses, and standing on our own feet, NOT Expecting or Demanding a children's catered FAIRYTALE.
2. I didn't say it was 'wonderful', I said it was 'REAL', not the land of spoiled children's fairytales.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 5, 2013 at 7:07 pm

So..
1. BART workers live in the real world, according to your most recent answer. And yet they don't live in the real world, according to your prior post.

2. You think the real world's employment situation sucks, but you're bitterly opposed to those who stand together against that ugly reality and fight for a better situation.

Thanks Angry, you've told me all I needed to know! :-)


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2013 at 8:18 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Ahhh, NS, twisting what is said to fit your own need.

!. The majority of employees are non-union -- link already posted. So union employees are, at a minimum, not living where the rest of employees do.

2. Survival of the fittest. It's nature. Do well, thrive. Figure out the requirements, thrive. Band together, and you might just be lemmings.


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Posted by Angry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 12:46 am

Never, ever have I said public union members live in the real world. Can't you read? They do not have strong enough spines to stand alone, as competent individuals. Instead, losers who choose to be demanding, spoiled children, grasping each other, all hanging on to Nanny. They have lost all personal identity, afraid to stand tall as individuals, like the rest of us who go out to risk facing the real world daily, alone..that's reality. Not so for the crying children, not good enough, or stong enough to stand alone in the real world. Instead using force of numbers threatening a strike, knowing they're not skilled enough to be hired for anything else...unable to face the real world. Not even enough pride to their own share of their own retirement. Pure personal greed, no earned respect.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 6:08 am

Kathleen, your lack of education is revealing itself in spades. You posit 'survival of the fittest' and apply it to the world of political economy, American laborers and such.

Survival of the fittest is a Darwinist concept. It applies to evolution via (1) natural selection and (2) genetic mutation. The stronger genes -- ones that better equip animals for survival -- tend to be 'selected' and those animals without those genes tend to die out.

Inasmuch as your platitudes are so laughable, I want to urge you to continue on with your good work.

Darwin never applied this to human activity, nor would he have ever dreamt of so doing. Yes, a bunch of retarded late 19th century and early 20th century ideologues (mis)used the concept, survival of the fittest, to justify extant inequalities, but anyone with intelligence knew the (mis)use was simply that -- ideologues misusing science in order to justify their own warped view of the world.

As for union workers being now in the minority, you might try reading some history. Union workers have not tended to vote to disband their unions; rather, they were crushed by capitalists who had the resources (and the paid off state) to do so.

Your ignorance about matters scientific and historical is obvious, and laughably so. Is it any wonder that posters tend to mock you and the multiple steves as the ignorant ideologues that you are?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 6, 2013 at 8:46 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Mike, the comment wasn't literal, but it was just a bit flippant. Saying I am an ideologue (and you are not) once again proves you do not know me.

"and the paid off state" . . . like California Democrats owned by unions?






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Posted by Angry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 9:03 am

Mike, you're whinning and spinning is really getting tiresome. Instead of the usual vile flame-throwing union talkers, you, apparently have been tasked with a more gentle approach, in a feeble but failed attempt to 'appear' more reasoned. The problem being, your blather is so hollow.
Your opening and comments on this and other threads offer little honesty, or accuracy. We read and listen ourselves and seem to be more informed than you. AND, your 'poor us' line is simply not credible, will not fly, and is truly insulting that you who try to con us with your 'misstatement' of facts and numbers. The salaries, the fact that we pay your employee contributions, on and on, is greedy and insulting. Stop your 'poor us' routine. In today's economy you put yourself at risk with such nonsense. Many 'professional' people are unemployed, without pay, or medical, or retirement. You have no need or entitlement. Stop the con. We recognize the greed for what it is. Stick to facts. We read and are informed of real facts.


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Posted by Dark Corners of Town
a resident of Country Fair
on Jul 6, 2013 at 9:49 am

Mike Cherry - my advice for employees who don't like their employer's so called "leverage", is to become an employer.


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Posted by huh?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 12:08 pm

Why is the statistic put out there that a "family of four needs $74,341 to "get by" in Alameda County"? - Since when should a "blue collar worker" (how BART employees are referred to in many articles - not my terminology) expect to/feel entitled to support a family on single-worker wages? Most households require 2 wage-earners nowadays...*THAT* is reality!!


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Kathleen,
Because a majority of your comments appear flip, it's very difficult to assume that you are anything but uneducated.

Dark Corners,
My advice to anyone who's displeased with unions helping their members make a decent wage, move to China.

Angry,
What's the difference between a fact and a 'real fact'. Don't come back until you have that one figured out.

huh,
After you complete your groveling exercise, you might consider that only 40-50 years ago a family of four was typically supported by one bread winner. Unions have been smashed over the past decades, and now, surprise-surprise, it now typically takes two breadwinners to keep a family above the poverty line.

Some one or other poor idiot,
I post on the PW boards not because I'm intent to change anyone's mind but only because I find dealing with bobbleheads to be somewhat amusing.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

When all else fails, attack the person.

A move to China, technically, would be a better fit for you.

If attacking the person fails, create a diversion from the facts.

Two income families are not the exclusive domain of the blue collar worker. The two income families I know did so to provide better environments and educations for their children.

Thank you for confirming your posts on any given topic aren't an "openly and honestly expressed point of view."


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2013 at 1:33 pm

Kathleen,

Not only do your churlish comments show a glaring lack of education, your logic stinks. Please consider my openly and honestly expressed point of view to be directed at what you have written, not you personally.

As to working-class people making less effective income than in years past, the busting up of unions has hurt everyone. Unions, historically, set the standard for wages and work conditions; as unions have declined (been destroyed is the more appropriate term) so have effective incomes for most of the working class also declined.

It is difficult to communicate with someone like yourself who is incapable of reasoning without tripping up on certain buzz words. State - evil entity bought off by unions, and it taxes us. Unions - your Daddy told you they pooped in his truck. Expressions of collective dissent - evil nonindividualists. Keep up the good work.


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Posted by Dark Corners of Town
a resident of Country Fair
on Jul 6, 2013 at 2:57 pm

Mike Cherry - Run away to China? How does that make any sense? If you don't like unions, you can choose not to join one, you can sue them like several CA teachers are, and you can fight them any way you choose. That is what I would advise.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 6, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Here's the deal Mike, give up on the daddy thing. It's a lie; a lie you made up; a lie you hope by repetition will suddenly be believable. Hard to consider anything else you have to say as open and honest.

I was fortunate enough to work for good organizations, both private and public. I received raises or promotions based on merit and a strong work ethic--one I got from both my mother and father, neither of whom ever took anything for granted. And while my father had a few jerky bosses along the way and worked for many wealthy people, I never once heard him say they owed him a thing or saw him participate in a strike (it could be his union never called for one).

Growing up in the Midwest, I saw the fine union leadership skills of Jimmy Hoffa, a gem of a guy who was taken out, most probably, by his cronies. So any time union leaders call for strikes leaving the rest of us stranded and their members walking, literally, in circles (and where the leaders generally show up only for a brief rallying cry), you'll have to forgive me for thinking it's a strong-arm tactic union members would be better served by burying with Jimmy. There are better methods for negotiating, and that goes for both sides. My support is going to the poor mediator.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 6:44 am

Thanks for your heartfelt autobiography, Kathleen. I'm sure you're a much better person than was Jimmy Hoffa. What a bad boy he was!

And what about companies, their owners and officials, that have laid off workers en masse and then rehired new workers at 40% pay a day later; or have declared bankruptcy and then re-opened the next day in order to pay workers half of what they were making; or, chasing cheap foreign exploitable child labor, have moved overseas, overnight, with no warning given to their workers? What about them? Well, obviously they are a paragon of virtue compared to Jimmy Hoffa, whose unsafe and unhealthy work conditions led to the deaths of untold numbers of workers.

Yes, Kathleen, those poor capitalist owners deserve better negotiation tactics than the threat of strike. Let those thug unions and their pooping members take a page out of the book of Chinese labor relations where those virtuous Chinese kids and women would never think of striking for better wages or safer working conditions.

Like your logic, Kathleen. Really well thought out. Historically sensitive ... using Jimmy Hoffa and all. And like you say, since we buried Hoffa, we should bury unions.

Nothing ideological about your reasoning. Nothing at all. You're okay, girl. Employers loved you, I bet. Never a boot at your workplace that went unlicked.


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Posted by reader
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 7:04 am

Kathleen is the only poster that makes sense and supports her claims with both quotes and links. After reading the news articles and the comments from other posters, it's still obvious that the unions are attempting to create havoc in an effort to extract evenore moneyfrom taxpayers


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 7:06 am

Nice try, Kathleen. Or is there more than one boot licker among us?


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jul 7, 2013 at 8:26 am

I don't want to get embroiled in a flame war here, but I think I should just put in my two cents and see if we can bring this thread back on topic. Yes, Kathleen does provide the most links and backs up her claims with sources. And yes, Kathleen also comes across as bitter, narrow-minded, and Someone who clearly has nothing better to do than grind her ax here on the forum day in and day out.

Now, can we get back on topic please?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 7, 2013 at 9:11 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Observer. I am sorry if I sound bitter and narrow minded. I am neither. I am, quite obviously, against union leadership tactics such as this recent strike.

Thank you for the positive comment about how I post. Those opposed to those sources of information respond on a personal level. It isn't that easy to turn the other cheek. At one point, there was a topic posted asking, "Where is she" because I hadn't posted (happened to be in Europe). It's good that I post; it's bad that I post. I have an axe to grind; I post sources. I have nothing better to do; where is she. What's a girl to do? ;o)

Mike, either I'm too factual or not factual enough. Try using interest-based bargaining, know the impact of the demands on budgets into the future, don't use customers as leverage, and don't expect those customers to just keep picking up the tab. It's a guess, but it isn't likely BART's ridership are people with endless deep pockets.

You should talk to some of my bosses, boot licking is not in my nature.


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Posted by tim
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 7, 2013 at 9:12 am

I am going to pray for you all.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by yes
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 9:20 am

... We can get back on topic. I think you've already done that by regurgitating your nonsense. Bad post followed by a drug induced rant coming from a woman that may or may not know where her children are. Or maybe you're just rsponding to the cluelss one that thinks union wages need to be doubled.


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Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 7, 2013 at 10:17 am

Staceleen is right, once in a while people praise her, so there's no reason for her to improve her bad behavior, which many people also comment on. No reason at all. I mean, she's getting mixed messages, so what's a person to do? Try to be better? Heck no!


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 7, 2013 at 10:55 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

In case the links don't work, these articles are all from today's SF Chronicle regarding BART.

From WIllie Brown: Web Link

From Matier & Ross: Web Link

BART set to raise fees for parking in East Bay: Web Link

From Joe Garofoli: Web Link


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Posted by john
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm

"Dark Corners" can you please lay off the Republican/Libertarian garbage and "Mike Cherry" please lay off the Democrat/Union garbage. Or are you the same person just talking to yourself? There are legitimate points to be debated here, but there doesn't seem to be much interest in debating them.

Comments like "become an employer" or "move to China" don't really add very much to the conversation.


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Posted by liberalism is a disease
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 7, 2013 at 5:13 pm

liberalism is a disease is a registered user.

Mike, the idiot, states: "....you might consider that only 40-50 years ago a family of four was typically supported by one bread winner. Unions have been smashed over the past decades, and now, surprise-surprise, it now typically takes two breadwinners to keep a family above the poverty line."
Your illogic is typical of babbling union fools. The cost of living increases that now requires two incomes to get by are directly related to the increase in costs of goods and services due to overinflated compensation for union thugs that have infiltrated the supply chain. Only a blindly partisan union fool could ignore economic reality.


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Posted by john
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 7:34 pm

"liberalism" said,

"union thugs that have infiltrated the supply chain"

Would you please explain what supply chain you are talking about and what way "union thugs" infiltrated it? Isn't private sector union membership about 6.6%?

Web Link

Hasn't inflation been fairly mild for the last 20-30 years or so? Wasn't the great inflation in the 1970s more a result of inflationary monetary policy than it was the result of union activity?

Web Link


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Posted by nomore
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2013 at 7:54 pm

There should be no more raises given to BART, or any other government agency, until the pensions and other post employment benefits (e.g., medical insurance post-retirement) are fully funded. If the employees feel that is unacceptable, they can negotiate reduced retirement benefits that bring down the costs. The pensions plan's retirement age should be tied to Social Security. It is asinine that government works can retire at 55 or 60 years old and get full retirement but the taxpayers cannot. Better yet, since the unions keep saying that they do not get Social Security, we should eliminate public employee pensions and put them into Social Security plus their own investments like 401(b) plans. We are paying real high salaries so we can 'attract the best employees' so they should be smart enough to invest their money like the average taxpayer has to do.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:52 am

I have found it somewhat difficult to have a civil dialogue with some of posters, foremost of whom is Kathleen. I have no comment on her personality. What I find somewhat exasperating is how, after her poorly veiled ideology, its shortcomings and the host of her biases are revealed (a rather easy task for anyone with basic education and logic), she tends to make matters personal. "Oh, if you only knew me!" "Oh, I wrote that but I really didn't mean that!" "Oh, I'm truly not as poorly educated as my comments reveal." Time and again discussions spiral downward into discussions of who she is, how she isn't what she writes, and how if we really knew her, as opposed to knowing what she's written, we'd think differently of her. It gets rather tedious.

As for the links, I find them of negligible help to any civil discussion, a rather poor substitute for an inability to formulate a clear and concise argument. As the saying goes, "Statistics don't lie but liars use statistics." Well, in the case we're discussing, the same holds for links. Someone like Kathleen, with poor argumentative skills but a strong ideological bent, selects links that support her ideology, and does so under the pretense of being objective. Like I say, it's all rather tedious, as it's difficult to engage in civil dialogue with an ideologue. Unlike students, say, who enter into dialogue with a hunger for knowledge, the ideologue only pretends to want knowledge as, in this case, she already thinks she knows it all. Ideological tendencies of this type and weak educational background tend to go hand in hand.


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Posted by nomore
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 8:33 am

Mike, you find it difficult to have a dialogue with Kathleen because she is right and supports her data. You keep repeating the same thing over and over that you are right and if somebody disagrees with you, you attack the messenger. It is a lot easier to attack the messenger than attacking the data, especially when you do not have facts to back up your statements.


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Posted by ayeaye
a resident of Jensen Tract
on Jul 8, 2013 at 9:03 am

FACTS:

Unions for private sector jobs: fine, who cares

Unions for public sector jobs: OK, but with NO STRIKE provisions.

If public sector unions can't accept that provision, no unionization of essential public sector jobs, eg. nurses, teachers, fire, police, ambulance, AND public transportation. Some states have already made movement in this direction and if our elected officials can read the writing on the wall, they will proposed similar bills. The VAST majority of taxpayers are fed up with these strike tactics


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Posted by Sue
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Jul 8, 2013 at 9:03 am

I really didn't bother reading all the comments above, but does anyone think that 10-12 weeks of vacation is a LOT of paid time off? Or is it just me, wishing I had that much vacay time?


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 8, 2013 at 9:03 am

I agree with "nomore"'s last posting. As Kathleen has articulated her position, she has supplied links that each of has the ability (perhaps not the willingness) to read and form our own opinion. I am constantly surprised with the amount of personal attacks poorly disguised as comments directed towards Kathleen.
The fact does remain that for the overall educational level and amount of responsibility, BART employees are well compensated for their base 37 and 1/2 hour work week. To continue to attempt to deny this, start looking at the world outside of BART. Once this strike is settled, I would encourage the truly concerned to write to their respective elected officials to do what several other major cities have done and that is to make such strikes illegal. Many major cities already have in place laws that make strikes by transit workers illegal. New York has such a law in place. A strike is illegal under the provisions of an addition to New York State Civil Service Law called the Public Employees Fair Employment Act, more commonly called the Taylor Law. It prohibits municipal workers from striking and provides alternative means for dispute resolution. The law provides for criminal penalties including imprisonment of union officials, and fines against the union and individual striking workers. Such a law here would put an end to such unrealistic demands by a union out of control.


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Posted by ayeaye
a resident of Jensen Tract
on Jul 8, 2013 at 9:07 am

Dave, I agree with you 100%. Good post


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Posted by ajay dhillon
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Jul 8, 2013 at 10:13 am

Totally agree with Dave. The BART union has no right to hold the commuters hostage. We need to have a law where public service employees cannot strike. They all ought to be fired and I am sure we will get hundreds of applicants for each job. These employees are rude and have a negative attitude.They do not believe in customer service.
Unions were needed 100 years back when the corporations were exploiting workers and the working conditions were bad and unsafe.Now they are job killers and reduce our ability to compete in the world. We have a large number of govt departments like Dept of Labor and OSHA to safeguard workplace conditions. Ca is last in place to do business and one of the reasons is the control the unions have on our politicians. I know first hand as we closed/sold every business we had in Ca and are thriving in Texas and Oklahoma.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 8, 2013 at 10:20 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

There is an editorial today from the Bay Area News Group that acknowledges what many have posted here regarding BART: Web Link


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Posted by Dude
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 8, 2013 at 10:25 am

(Post deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff)


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Posted by Chemist
a resident of Downtown
on Jul 8, 2013 at 11:39 am

The unions and the automobile put the old railroads into virtual oblivion. The unions have rendered public education a joke. Perhaps the unions will be able to put public transportation out of business. Then all the high rise condos by the tracks will have to put in more garages.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:00 pm

As so many of the recent above posts indicate, every good ideologue and propagandist must have numerous computers in order to post under many names. No arguments; simply blanket assertions; all typical of a single poster whose name you can deduce for yourselves.


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Posted by Chemist
a resident of Downtown
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Greedy workers demand a salary that might help them get by ....
From Contra Costa Times : BART workers, who seek a 23 percent pay increase, are already the top-paid transit system employees in the region and among the best-paid in the nation. They have free pensions, health care coverage for their entire family for just $92 a month and the same sweet medical insurance deal when they retire after just five years on the job. They work only 37 hours a week. They can call in sick during the workweek and then volunteer for overtime shifts on their days off. Such rules exacerbate out-of-control overtime that added in 2012 an average 19 percent to base pay for station agents and 33 percent for train operators.

Hey - sign me up for that job!


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:14 pm

In the region ... What? Compared to Tracey?

Again, unions have historically raised the standard. I'm delighted that the unions are seeking the wage increases, as well as increased safety standards. Most workers will look upon this as an inducement for themselves to mobilize and organize for better wages, pensions, benefits, workplace safety and health policies. Of course there will always be the grumblers and bootlickers among us who will whine to the heavens because union workers have secured better wages and work conditions than they have.

Side note: a bartender who mixes drinks does not a chemist make. Too bad those imaginaries of thought aren't directed toward improving the human condition instead of whining to an ever decreasing chorus of whiners.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:16 pm

Just a thought for Mike Cherry; Have you ever considered that many, many different people consider the BART union out of control. It's rather childish to post things like "all typical of a single poster whose name you can deduce for yourselves." Many different people posting feel the union is being unreasonable and judging from the various links to articles that apparently you don't feel worth reading, the majority of the general public feels the same. You could never be accused of commenting under different names because you are obviously in the minority in trying to defend the unions unreasonable demands.


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Posted by Raise plus COLA
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

Can someone also clarify if the raises being talked about cover the COLA? Usually, these 2 items are separate but with COLA guaranteed? If COLA has been guaranteed, how much have they been in the past 5 years?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:57 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

This is a link for ATU's contract. Web Link

I haven't had a chance to review it for compensation.

Links to all the employment agreements can be found here: Web Link


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

The section on Cost of Living / Wage Adjustment begins on page 46. The salary schedule begins on page 188. A great deal of the contract deals with compensation and benefits.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:14 pm

To: We all know who....

BART workers, on average, lost approx. 8% in overall wages over the past five years. The wage increases being called for will help make up for those lost wages and help workers keep abreast of inflationary rises in people's cost of living over the next five years.

It appears to me that workers have made significant strides in their efforts to bring about economic justice. They would not have gone on strike without first have received significant positive social media feedback.

It's unfortunate that the region's mainstream newspapers sided with management - never, for example, revealing the soured relationship that had developed between management and workers over the past 5 years -- focusing primarily on how the public was inconvenienced, and then not inconvenienced, both being efforts to debilitate the workers' efforts to gain justice for themselves, their families, and ultimately other workers across the region and, indeed, the entire nation.

Corporate bigwigs have made off like bandits with profits during the extended recession, and this at the expense of America's working classes. BART management was attempting to play a card from the same deck. Fortunately, the strike has called attention to the plight of workers and will no doubt induce others to exercise their voice in the ongoing struggle for economic justice.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:22 pm

Interesting to note that according to Mike Cherry, the "BART workers, on average, lost approx. 8% in overall wages over the past five years". Wow, were they ever overpaid then! Just think, according to Mike, no raises over the last five years, yet today they are the top-paid transit system employees in the region and among the best-paid in the nation. They have free pensions, health care coverage for their entire family for just $92 a month and the same sweet medical insurance deal when they retire after just five years on the job. They work only 37 hours a week. They can call in sick during the workweek and then volunteer for overtime shifts on their days off. Such rules exacerbate out-of-control overtime that added in 2012 an average 19 percent to base pay for station agents and 33 percent for train operators. I'm beginning to think they should be giving some back rather than demanding a 23% increase.


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Posted by nomore
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:33 pm

You are right Dave. They have been overpaid for some time. Although we don't know if the info that Mike gave is correct or not since it is his opinion and there are no links to support his assertions.

Since the papers have always supported unions in the past, no matter what they ask for, you know that the BART union has to be WAY out of control in order for the liberal papers not to support them. The papers not supporting the BART unions is a huge sign.


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Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Dave, try to stop being a parrot, squawking out one lament after another. Yes, we understand you are unhappy.

If you had any real intelligence, you might try to explain why you are comparing BART workers to other workers in the region and then holding BART workers to a lower standard. I'd think any intelligent person would be interested in how America's working class can raise the standard of its life conditions, not lowering it as you seem to want to do. We understand you're miserable, but that is no excuse for wishing same upon others.

The comparison is itself odd. Does Pleasanton or Dublin or Stockton, for example, have a large contingent of train operators? If not, then the comparison of BART workers to other transit workers in the region is invalid. (See my above comments about how liars use statistics.)

It's too bad there are a few like yourself who want to lower the standard of living for America's workers. Fortunately, you are in a shrinking minority. Work on bringing some sunshine into your own personal, decrepit, unhappy world.

Since most BART workers live outside the city, they've managed to bargain for a 37 and 1/2 hour work week which compensates a bit (though I'd argue not enough) for time spent commuting, paying bridge tolls, car expenses, etc. Studies have shown for decades that better rested Americans, showing a higher morale re. their work, might well work a 30 hour work week with little or no negative effects. 37-1/2 hour weeks aren't quite there, but Hurrah for the courageous striking workers whose struggles help us all.


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Posted by Raise plus COLA
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Thank you Kathleen for the link to the ATU contract document. Upon reading the appropriate Section (8.2), COLA is independent of the any raises. Can someone comment on this? Most employees in the private industy do not receive any COLA in addition to raises. Doesn't this nullify current argument. [BTW, I don't support management giving themselves fat raises either.] Everything should be based on merit.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:56 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Do BART employees travel on BART to get to work? If so, do they pay? We'll see how others post about your comments, but I imagine there are few commuters who get to work fewer hours just because of where they choose to live vs. where they work. Second guess is they are not compensated for tolls and car expenses. So if most commuters are working 40+ hours (and were left scrambling during the strike and perhaps lost pay themselves), how exactly have "courageous striking workers . . . help(ed) us all"?


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Page 42 of the employment agreement (ATU):


"Section 7.1 Pass Privileges
The District will provide free transportation over its lines during normal hours of operation to full-time employees and pensioners and their spouses and dependent children, provided they properly display their District identification card."


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Posted by nomore
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 2:13 pm

Mike forgets to mention that the workers all get free BART transportation for their family, even after they retire. I do not know of any job that counts the 40 hour week including the transportation time it takes to get to work. We need to fix their work week to be 40 hours like the rest of the workers, and not let them take a sick day and then on the same week work over time. Plus sick time should be capped, same with vacation time. The more we hear about the BART workers, the more facts we learn about the benefits they get that are out of line.

I am beginning to think that Mike actually hates the unions and keeps posting his outlandish comments so that more people will not support the unions. I know that every comment he posts further confirms why the BART union is way out of line. So thank Mike for helping us get our point across.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Mike Cherry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Wow, there remain some pathetic ones in our midst who don't want to see Americans work fewer hours. No doubt, this same mentality was against Child Labor laws, the 40-hour work week, and laws that prohibit discrimination in the workplace. Horror of horrors, BART employees get to ride the BART for free! Do those of you who persist in embracing the lowest possible denominator not realize how ridiculously churlish you sound?

Americans work longer hours than every other developed country in the world. A union steps forward to repair this deficiency, and a shrunken minority of whiners, so-called hostages, and victims can only wail to the heavens. Sad, yet fortunate that so few others share the lament of the regressives in our midst.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 8, 2013 at 2:35 pm

Let's all take a look at Mike most recent posting and break it down.
The statement regarding comparing BART workers is attributed to the Contra Costa Times editorial: BART strike has long way to go before it's over
Contra Costa Times editorial 2013 Bay Area News Group
Posted: 07/05/2013 12:29:34 PM PDT
Updated: 07/05/2013 06:19:25 PM PDT
And specifically compares BART workers to other area transit workers, not just others workers. Actually you have insulted BART workers by implying they are held to a lower standard. The majority of postings merely want them held to the same standard that most of us are held to. Where did the "lower standard" come from? It may help Mike to realize the wording "transit" does not apply solely to "train operators" and that "region" is more than just "Pleasanton or Dublin or Stockton" Here's one meaning for Mike's clarification on the big word "transit"; "Conveyance of people or goods from one place to another, especially on a local public transportation system". Perhaps Mike can then think of some other "transit" workers in the "region"
Interesting comment on "most BART workers live outside the city". Perhaps you could be a little more specific on what city you are referring to and then perhaps quote a source. Sorry, I forgot that you don't need to quote those silly old facts; outlandish statements serve you just as well.
Finally, your statement that" Hurrah for the courageous striking workers whose struggles help us all". Studies have shown that in fact, excessive demands, and yes a demand for a 23% increase is excessive, hurt the majority of workers. Economic research finds that unions benefit their members but hurt consumers generally, and especially workers who are denied job opportunities. So I'm not sure at all the striking BART workers are helping us all.


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Posted by bc
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 4:05 pm

It seems that the biggest problem with the negotiations and their impact on the public, i.e., taxpayers, is the health benefits and pension benefits. BART workers, as most public job holders, have extravagant benefits for these 2 items as compared to those for most, if not all, non-public workers.
And if they are pushing for raises for the past years maybe they should consider their status as compared with all of the common folks who lost their jobs over the past few years. That might provide a slightly different perspective.


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Posted by nomore
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 5:06 pm

Mike, BART workers are not looking to work less hours. They are looking to increase overtime pay. If the BART unions really want Americans to work less hours, they would eliminate overtime. Instead they are lowering the number of hours they have to work before they can claim overtime; once again screwing the taxpayers.

This is the perfect storm for the unions. Make fulltime hours less than normal. Then at the same time, demand high benefits like free pensions or health insurance that is unmatched. This way management ends up offering overtime as it is cheaper in some cases than the free pensions benefits and health insurance at an unheard of price. Essentially the unions are holding the taxpayers hostage with this.


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Posted by Angry
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:53 pm

I've been out of town for 32 hours, and see the debate continues.
Only a fool would challenge Kathleen, since she has provided hundreds of valuable links for factual verifications in many PW threads and topics, and most informed readers are aware of that fact. I guess Mike has missed out on some of our deeper discussions.
My thanks to 'no more' and Dave who have been right on and I agree with right down their lines.
Dhillon rightly reminds us that there is no need for public unions any longer at all. When taxpayers are employers we MUST abid by strict laws today. Laws never even dreamed of in days of old, from OSHA, Dept of Labor, etc...deeming public unions totally Unnecessary...and a huge Unneeded ripoff and burden to all taxpayers. Time to end this duplication. Lawmakers have done the job for union leaders.
Also, many thanks to BayAreaNewsGroup (coCoTIMES) who has been fighting this battle for us in Sacto for several years, and provided us with unlimited charts of pay info....that Gov Jerry Brown & his legis has been trying to take from the public just last week!!! He is trying to end the public 'disclosure' the NewsGroup won in court for us about two years ago. Shame on Gov for trying to take away the PUBLIC's RIGHT TO KNOW what & who we PAY !!!
And yes bc, you're right, These unions should be grateful to have kept their jobs for these last FIVE years at the SAME pay. My son, a mechanical engineer, is now in his second lay off as a professional. Without manufacturing, mechanical designing isn't needed, so first employer, after 15 yrs, went broke. Not even severance for any employees. Now he is again enduring a similar situation. SAME paying job during that FIVE years sounds GREAT to all but these greedy union ingrates!!! Time to end this nonsense. Now Mike is going back to his pathetic 'poor us' line. None of us are buying that line.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Daveg
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 10, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Daveg is a registered user.

Great article; worth all reading
Web Link


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 12, 2013 at 12:50 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

This is no way to build public support:

"It was SEIU Local 1021 President Roxanne Sanchez who made the most shocking threat.
'We will be prepared for the bloodiest, longest strike since the 1970s if this kind of tactics continue,' said Sanchez." Web Link

Maybe Sanchez missed this Tom Meyer cartoon: Web Link


 +   Like this comment
Posted by gaijinman
a resident of Dublin
on Jul 25, 2013 at 8:45 pm

gaijinman is a registered user.

What a joke Cherry... the union goons are not supposed to own our lives. We paid for BART and service should not be dispensed at the pleasure of some out of control (and, yes, extremely greedy) members of the privileged class that receive well more than the average BART rider (that also somehow have to "get by"). There are specific warnings about the inappropriate double whammy of public servants and collective bargaining. But of course the unions vote up their own politicians of the specific sort General Patton warned about that in turn scratch some backs while ignoring the regular folks they are supposed to represent.

I have a family member that paid tuition for an Art college in SF and made only one mistake in assuming that the only available option for transportation BART could be relied upon.

Countless lives of hard working folks of all education levels now face absurd levels of punishment whether on a train or attempting to navigate through the extra demand dumped onto the highways.

I sure hope that in spite of higher food prices some good folks will make the investment in eggs and tomatoes to correctly express the appropriate public response to this game of leveraging our own system to hold us all for an obscene and unsustainable ransom.


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Posted by gaijinman
a resident of Dublin
on Jul 25, 2013 at 8:55 pm

gaijinman is a registered user.

Cherry... read some more of your absurd comments concerning "big wigs" and "economic justice". You seem clever enough and I know you can read... so I hope you won't mind my offering a recommendation. Economics in One Lesson. Easy to find on amazon and there's a kindle version available.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Daveg
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 28, 2013 at 10:06 am

Daveg is a registered user.

More information that shows just how unreasonable and out of touch the BART workers are.
BART workers earned the most money on average last year among the 25 largest government agencies in the Bay Area, additionally they are the highest paid transit operators in California.
Web Link


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