Generating enough media spin to rival a jet engine at take off, the management and PR folks at Ikea Canada want you to believe that their poor little corporation is being held hostage by greedy, soulless union workers in Richmond.
Woe. Pity poor Ikea.
It’s tough being a multi-national corporation with a reputation for union busting, still more union busting and sundry human rights violations. It is also expensive to flog the entire planet with particle board, Allen Keys and horsemeat tainted foodstuffs. You can’t expect them to provide “coworkers” with a safe, fair and equitable place (Read more…)
The union movement is one of the last remnants of the great postwar pact between labour, capital and government.
That pact provided Canadians with things they still value, from medicare to public pension plans. Good wages in union shops kept pay high, even in workplaces that weren’t organized. Unions agitated for and won better health and safety laws that covered all.
True, union rules made it more difficult for employers to axe slackers. But they also ensured that when someone lost his job, it was for real cause — not because he or she had refused to sleep with the
. . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Thomas Walkom Today
Although I believe unreservedly in the vital role that unions play in both protecting and promoting workers’ rights, I make no apologies for the times that I have been critical of them. Cronyism, questionable expenditures, and corruption have no pla… . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: The Not-So-Hidden-Hand of Harper
While I strongly believe in being critical of unions when their behaviour warrants it, I am steadfast in my belief that they serve a vital role for the working person, which, essentially, is all of us, at least until retirement. I therefore must disagree with those who claim that the harsh measures about to be imposed by the McGuinty government of Ontario are somehow at least partly attributable to union intransigence.
In his Star column this morning, Martin Regg Cohn offers a good analysis of the politics motivating Mr. McGuinty as the legislature prepares to resume tomorrow to deal with
. . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: That Man Behind the Curtain
Reading the print version of the story I posted a link to yesterday regarding young Tim Hudak’s latest attempt at formulating policy (a.k.a. union busting) got me thinking once more about how politicians misuse and debase language.
In what I guess in his world passes for bold and innovative thinking, young Tim would like union membership to no longer be mandatory and would outlaw the “forced paycheque contributions” unionized workers make to political causes.
Hudak said that “the more flexible the workplace, the greater demand there is going to be for workers.”
“If you have a flexible
. . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: What "Flexibility" Really Means
Because, I guess, young Master Hudak believes in work-place democracy.
Can the workhouses be far behind? Recommend this Post
Reading my morning Star, I learned that there is wide-spread support among the public for austerity measures to reduce Ontario’s deficit. I suspect that there will be a particular appetite for the following:
Hundreds of thousands of teachers, nurses and all other public employees face higher pension contributions or reduced payouts to keep their plans sustainable, the Ontario government will announce Tuesday.
Although I am a former teacher receiving one of those ‘lavish pensions’ that come with no benefits (I pay about $3,000 per year for supplementary health insurance), I shall not use this space to offer a defense
. . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Ontario’s Impending Austerity Budget