On Wednesday I wrote on the ironic tale of union vs union and United Airlines. In that case, two factions of the AFL-CIO are battling over which one of them gets to represent flight attendants within the United/Continental universe. That farce of an election is about as fair as those we often see in China and other dictatorships — one party to choose from, one choice to run the show at the top, that sort of thing. In this case, it’s heads Richard Trumka wins, and tails Richard Trumka wins because either way the AFL-CIO ends up raking in more in dues.
Well, while I was writing that up, the National Mediation Board made the shocking announcement that it will challenge a union election defeat that took place last year involving Delta Airlines. And one of the same AFL-CIO affiliates involved in the United case is at the center of this one. Hold on to your seats, right?
The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA lost the election in November, with 51 percent of votes coming in against the union. The AFA had represented Northwest flight attendants before Delta bought Northwest in 2008. Delta flight attendants had not been in a union.
The union claimed Delta illegally intimidated workers, with constant reminders to vote, and anti-union DVDs playing in crew lounges. Delta said it was just reminding workers that they needed to vote if they wanted their voice to be heard. Delta also said AFA pestered flight attendants to find out how they voted, and that those who voted against the union were harassed.
AFA also complained that Delta had blocked it from discussing the vote with flight attendants in hotel lobbies in Amsterdam and Tokyo, where the airline has hubs. Delta said flight attendants had complained about harassment by the union at hotels, and that the hotels enforced their own policies against uninvited solicitation.
The National Mediation Board said on Wednesday that an investigator would do interviews and an on-site investigation.
“You have to prove a substantial case in order to conduct an investigation, so this is a big victory for us,” said Veda Shook, president of the Association of Flight Attendants.
Yes, it is a big victory for Big Labor and for no one else. This investigation will end up gobbling up millions, and a lot of time, for Delta. The airline industry is already ailing badly. Is now really a good time to have a federal bureaucracy rooting around and causing trouble?
No, unless your agenda is to hand the entire economy over to Big Labor. And just for a refresher, that’s exactly what Barack Obama promised the SEIU he would do. The only promises he has consistently kept have been those he made to his long time allies in Big Labor and on the far left. Every other promise he has made has come with an expiration date.
Watch as these folks attempt to overturn the election and install the union by fiat.