UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who has covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

January 23, 2009

UNIONS: THE FOLKS WHO BROUGHT YOU THE US AIRWAYS RESCUE

Empty Wheel - They're calling it a miracle--the successful landing of a US Airways jet in the Hudson and subsequent rescue of all 155 passengers. They're detailing the heroism of all involved, starting with the pilot and including cabin crew, ferry crews, and first responders. What they're not telling you is that just about every single one of these heroes is a union member.

The pilot, Chesley Sullenberger, is a former national committee member and the former safety chairman for the Airline Pilots Association and now represented by US Airline Pilots Association. He--and his union--have fought to ensure pilots get the kind of safety training to pull off what he did yesterday.

Then there are the flight attendants: They are members of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA.

There are the air traffic controllers: They're represented by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association.

There are the ferry crews: They're represented by the Seafarers International Union. They provide safety training to their members so they're prepared for events like yesterday's accident.

There are the cops and firemen: They're represented by the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association and the Uniformed Firefighters Association and Uniformed Fire Officers Association.

Bob Corker and Richard Shelby like to claim that union labor is a failed business model. But I haven't heard much about Bob Corker and Richard Shelby saving 155 people's lives.

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