Monday, March 30, 2009

Sorry Strikers

The Fraternal Order of Police is going to picket City Hall on Thursday, angry about and offended by the proposed 16% pay raise, over 5 years, that's on the table right now.

Also on Thursday, the International Olympic committee will be in Chicago, visiting the city as part of the "process" for trying to get the 2016 games.


Of course, the cynical me (is there any other kind?) would never see it that way. It's obvious, isn't it? The cops want a better contract, so they're gonna picket on a day where the IOC has wide eyes and the mayor is (potentially? maybe?) vulnerable. It certainly could help 'em get what they want. It makes sense.

Very bold.

The FOP is not generally bold.

Very European, too.

In France, for example, there are strikes and protests all the time. People will take to the streets for almost anything. Say what you will about those crazy Frogs, at least they do something when they're pissed. Far too often, here in the good old U.S.A., folks are inclined to just sit and complain; feign outrage.

Write stupid blogs.

Nothing really gets done.

The French, though? When Paris was an Olympic bid city (for the 2012 games), the public transit workers went on strike during an IOC visit. No bus service. No subway service. It affected commuter trains, and ultimately, flights at the airports were delayed. All of the main trade unions went on strike as well. Paris was brought to a virtual standstill. What kind of impression do you think was left with the IOC?

London was awarded the games.

Now, the FOP has come out publicly saying that the timing of their protest IS, in fact, a coincidence, and that the visit from the IOC has nothing to do with anything. That's just how the chips fell. No hard feelings.


Why would the FOP just give away a bunch of (very rare) leverage by claiming the timing of the protest is just coincidence. They could have taken the ball and run with it; they were already on a roll anyways. Last week, they gave Supt. Jody Weis a vote of "no-confidence." This week their protest will take place. Dare I say that they could have actually had the mayor by the proverbial you-know-what?

Nobody gets that opportunity.

The CTA already stinks, so a strike by them couldn't possibly carry much weight.

Not that I'm pulling for the cops pay raise OR the Olympics in 2016, anyways.

So it goes...

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