Tuesday, June 03, 2008
By Ken Reich
The Los Angeles Times has enough problems under the Tribune Co. ownership without the use of improperly threatening tactics by organized labor against the newspaper.
Yet, sadly, that is what we see this week in the disclosure of a letter from the Bargaining Committee for the Pressmen's union which threatens Times advertisers as a means of putting pressure on Times managers.
The letter, which says the union may ask customers to boycott the advertisers unless it fares better in negotiations with the Times over a contract for its pressmen members, is, I think, contrary to the long range interests not only of the newspaper and its pressmen, but all Times employees.
We cannot, and must not, forget that a strike of New York newspaper unions against that city's newspapers years ago resulted in the eventual permanent shutdown of several of the New York papers, which was a tragedy.
I certainly feel the Pressmen's union, which is part of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, is entitled to a fair contract, and I would hope that, if the talks are at an impasse, the two sides could reconsider their interests and come to a settlement.
I feel this is tantamount to a mobster saying: "I don't want to commit murder, but I may be forced to."
This is truly Jimmy Hoffa's Teamsters union. It is contrary to decent conduct, and a direct threat not only to the fortunes of the L.A. Times, but, as I say, the fortunes of all its employees, not to mention the interests of Los Angelenos and all Californians to have a strong, vibrant Los Angeles Times.
Ken's entire article can be read by clicking on the link below.
Take Back the Times: A Bad Pressmen's Union Letter to LAT Advertisers
The letter in question can be viewed here.