Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

Troops for Trade: Bush Administration Threatens to Bring in Troops to Squash Possible Longshoreman Strike, Federal Mediators Intervene in Boeing Strike Vote

StorySeptember 05, 2002
Watch iconWatch Full Show

Port employers and union leaders representing West Coast longshoremen returned to the negotiating table on Wednesday, three days after a breakdown in contract talks sparked fears of a crippling labor slowdown.

Employers say they will lock out the workers in the event of a work slowdown, which would in turn force a strike.

The Bush administration has threatened to bring in troops to quell a strike. The West Coast ports handle half the nation’s trade, worth more than $300 billion annually. Economists say a work stoppage could cost the national economy 1 or 2 billion dollars per day. (September is the peak month for imports from Asia, including Christmas merchandise bound for shelves of U.S. retailers.)

Meanwhile, Boeing’s three-year contract with the union expired on Monday. The company last week presented what it is calling its final offer, which included bonuses and raises. But it also angered the union because it contained rising health care costs and smaller-than-desired pension increases. The company also refused to guarantee jobs or job growth with production boosts.

Union members had begun voting to authorize a strike when federal mediators intervened and urged both sides to come to Washington. The director of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service Peter Hurtgen wrote to Boeing and union officials, saying he had "determined that any job action threatens to cause a substantial disruption of commerce."

Boeing officials met voluntarily yesterday with the mediators, but committed only to explaining the contract proposal, not to reopening talks after three months of negotiations. Negotiators for the International Association of Machinists, which represents 25,000 Boeing workers are set to meet with the federal mediators this morning.

Guest:

  • Harley Shaiken, Professor of Social and Cultural Studies at UC Berkeley

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation