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A school bus.
The New York City school bus strike is entering a second week, with the National Labor Relations Board hearing a challenge to the legality of the strike and the New York Times editorial board fully on board with Mayor Michael Bloomberg's austerity agenda.

A Times editorial acknowledges problems with corruption and with inefficient routes that send buses out long distances with few passengers.

But the uncompetitive labor agreements are the main focus of the mayor’s reform efforts.
So forget any other reforms that might be possible. Don't even mention that Bloomberg's own policies are driving up busing costs by putting more kids on buses to send them out of their neighborhoods to charter schools. If you're the New York Times editorial board and the mayor is only interested in addressing costs by going after school bus drivers and matrons whose pay starts at $14 and $11 an hour, respectively, then that's all you're interested in, too.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 09:11 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  seems so (0+ / 0-)

    While I suppose the issue is complex, it seems that the routes are the main problem.  Seniority is supposed to mean something.  

    But, then they also have in the Times that our post office has lost most federal shipping contracts, and how can they not be first choice?  Let's subsidize the post office while giving our business to private contractors?  

    Which is to say, at least NYC is trying to get their program to be more rational.  

    "oh no, not four more years of hope and change?" Karl Christian Rove

    by anna shane on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 09:31:57 AM PST

  •  His real title is "Boss" not mayor (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mostel26
  •  OK. I would like Michael Bloomberg (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aquarius40, Mostel26, sofia

    to try a little "austerity" for himself. I think he should spend a month working as a bus driver and living on what they make — no drawing on his vast investments. I am really fucking sick of lavishly wealthy people insisting on "austerity" for people who are barely getting by. To me, "sharing sacrifice" means that the ultra-wealthy need to feel some significant pain and sacrifice in their lifestyles. Bring it on, sucker.

    Jon Husted is a dick.

    by anastasia p on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 09:50:10 AM PST

  •  the Times never favors labor in a strike (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mostel26, sofia

    I've read that the Times never favors labor in a strike. Never. Well, I can't recall a single case from my own reading. Have we missed one?

    The Times is another example of the allegedly librul media that ain't librul.

  •  Thank you (0+ / 0-)

    There is so much that makes me angry about Bloomberg's policies.  

  •  It's pretty clear to me (0+ / 0-)

    that is no reason to be driving buses over long distances with 6 students.
    And all these trips up to NJ, CT, and westchester. Really? NYC can't run schools to provide the necessary services?
    The DOE cannot figure out a more efficient way to simplify the bus routes?
    What a joke. It's all the union's fault of course.

    "I'm a hopeless romantic...you're just hopeless." -Bouncing Souls

    by AndrewOG on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 12:19:38 PM PST

    •  A lot of those trips are for private schools (0+ / 0-)

      whose parents would never send their kids to public schools, so it doesn't matter what the services are.

      •  if they can afford private schools (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DSPS owl

        they can afford private transportation.

        Busses should take kids to the nearest school to their house.
        And I see nothing wrong for charging parents a monthly fee for bus service, if it isn't being done already.

        I rode Shank's mare to school my whole life.

        Oregon: Sure...it's cold. But it's a damp cold.

        by Keith930 on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 07:36:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That SO doesn't work in NYC (0+ / 0-)

          You have no idea. Kids often go to schools FAR from their homes. For example, dozens of buses take kids from Queens to Bronx High School of Science.

          This is SUCH a non-starter that any politician who suggested it would have his career ended at the next election.

  •  The NY Times.. (0+ / 0-)

    ..has been pretty much the rubber stamper of Bloomberg's policies throughout his three terms and is not exactly known for it's pro-labor editorial positions.  

    Sad, but really not a surprise.

  •  Wages (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MPociask

    According to the head of the striking union, "The city doesn't directly hire the bus drivers and matrons, who work for private companies that have city contracts. The workers make an average of about $35,000 a year, with a driver starting at $14 an hour and potentially making as much as $29 an hour over time, according to Cordiello."

    http://abclocal.go.com/...

  •  You would not believe (0+ / 0-)

    how angry parents here are at the school bus drivers. The disruption in their lives is enormous. This is not a winning issue for us.

  •  Gloomburge is so so right.. (snark below) (0+ / 0-)

    I have one tiny sugestion.. make the children walk to school in the snow etc. it wil reuslt in  smaller class sizes and healthier kids as the weak ones will not be the fit ones and they wil no lnoger need to be takers in our system. Mostlklky they will get sick and perhish  laving the strong to be able to recieve a great educastion in smaller classess!!!  What do randians say  maggots or sosme other term of endeerment..  

    "We need a revolution away from the plutocracy that runs Government."

    by hangingchad on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 07:27:24 PM PST

  •  it is said... (0+ / 0-)

    It is said that Billionaire Bloomberg bought the editorial endorsement of The New York Times, The New York Post, The New York Daily News, etc. when pursuing his illegal third term by making contributions of $70 million or more to the editors' favorite charities.  (This was on top of the $150 million or so that he paid for campaign expenses.)  

    In addition to revoking Citizens United, we must do more to get personal expenditures such as these banned.  

    Monied individuals are no less prone to corruption and no more capable of serving the public interests than non-monied individuals, and we must level the playing field and get all the excess money out of the election process.  

  •  I'm a Parent (0+ / 0-)

    And I stand with the union.   I don't know many parents who feel otherwise, apart from parents who feel all unions are inherently either wicked or inefficient. (The schools are also with the drivers, since the schools will start to lose funding since their attendance rates are falling.  My son's school (a special needs school) is down 40%.

    The Mayor is the mayor of all of us.  That includes those New Yorkers who work as bus drivers and assistants.  (I cannot bring myself to use the word "matron" in 2013. Sorry.)  The idea that the taxpayers cannot afford to pay the paltry amount of money these kind and decent people deserve is preposterous.  For the City to require that any company seeking its business to uphold fair wage and working standards via collective bargaining is almost literally the least the City could do.

    I notice how little coverage there is of this at all, and when there's any, the amount in controversy is never very clear.  I suspect because its something like a rounding error on a rich guy's tax return. ($30 million? $40?).  They pay that much to handle the Marathon, on the theory that it's good for business.

    The Mayor seems always able to see the interests of business, and never to see the interests of workers.  When they conflict, there's never been a single instance when he stood with us.  Plutocrats stick together, I suppose.

  •  Bloomberg is a petty tyrant (0+ / 0-)

    I know Bloomberg gets an issue right sometimes, but most of the time, he has no respect for the rights of people who aren't in his economic class. I'm mystified how he got elected. I know he spent amazing amounts of money out of pocket, but New Yorkers are familiar with him, so how did he win?

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