Guess Who’s AGAINST Restoring Muni Service in San Francisco… UPDATED

Have you ever read the news and had that moment where you wonder…are you really reading the news or are you reading a satirical version, like The Onion, instead?

When I read last week in the Chronicle that as Muni plans to restore a tiny portion of the service cuts of December 2009 and May 2010 this week, there was some talk that the Transport Worker’s Union was against restoring said service.

Wait, WHAT?

I had to re-read it again just to make sure I understood: TWU was against restoring service it used to provide, not even all of it, and asked their membership to boycott a signup of new routes and schedules. (Thankfully, the rank and file said “Heck No.”)

Then, a confidential source emailed to me the actual newsletter, outlining the TWU leadership’s plans to seek an injunction to block the restoration of service. Read it for yourself and see. It’s for real.

Which, after reading, I said again, “Wait….WHAT?!?”

After writing about the Muni and Our Fair City for as long as I have, you’d think that by now nothing would surprise me. But after reading this latest bit of news, I have to say even I was shocked.

Let’s review: Muni’s made huge cuts since December 2009. Thanks to some one-time budget shuffling and other temporary measures, we’re getting a tiny bit of service back for a while. And the people standing in the way of it are…..TWU’s leadership?

You have to begin to wonder what reality these folks are living in, since clearly it’s not the one you or I or anyone sane shares in this crazy city of ours. I mean we’re talking about restoring a portion of service that clearly wasn’t an issue to provide before May 2010, and it’s being opposed by the people who were doing so without too much mayhem back then. Now, however, it’s a “safety” issue?

Needless to say, this is comes off as a big “screw you” to Muni’s Owner/Riders. It certainly isn’t going to help gather any allies to fight Proposition G (Fix Muni Now.) It certainly isn’t going to help relations between the Muni Owner/Riders and the operators, and it certainly isn’t any help to the great majority of operators we’re cutting only about half that amount instead. We’re not even talking about repairing the damage done in December 2009 (which was spun as an “enhancement”!), and this has been accomplished through one-time measures, not through any major changes in Muni’s finances.

That said, would it have killed TWU’s leaders to support this as a way of at least pretending to care about the many Muni Owner/Riders who are not happy with the waste of time a slow, expensive, unreliable Muni creates?

It seems we have our answer.

UPDATE: My colleague at SF Weekly weighs in on the issue too.

UPDATE 2: It now seems there are calls for a sick-out this month (strikes are illegal, as we all know.) The flyer proposing this notes that:


Oh, really?

News flash, dumbasses: if you f*ck over half a million people in this town, you’re also f*cking over a lot of voters. Maybe you’re not aware of this, but we are. And if you pull stupid shit like this, don’t be surprised if something a lot tougher comes out on the next ballot.

I’m issuing a challenge to Rafael Cabrera, the president of TWU – if you don’t stop what is basically an illegal strike, I am going to ask every single Muni Owner/Rider to hold you and your fellow union leadership personally responsible for lost wages, lost business, lost time at school or with family if you screw up our Muni. It’s bad enough you’re against restoring service – now your members want to ruin our daily lives.

It’s too bad we don’t have a rider’s union (one that’s not a front group for the union that’s a “progressives only” club) that could stand up to this bullshit – or at least work it out so this doesn’t have to happen. As it stands, we have a group of people who are on fire and continue to pour gasoline on themselves. At this point, even the liberalist liberal is going to say “fine, flame on, fools.”

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4 Responses to Guess Who’s AGAINST Restoring Muni Service in San Francisco… UPDATED

  1. MrEricSir says:

    Their union seems so unbelievably discredited at this point, I don’t see how Prop G will get anything less than 100% of the vote.
    They’ve brought this problem on themselves. Unfortunately it’s the Muni operators who will pay the consequences for their union’s actions.

  2. Greg Dewar says:

    The leadership is a joke. There needs to be a revolt and a new regime in there that will stand up for the good operators.
    It frakking kills me to see them do this kind of stupid stuff, all the while seeing the majority of operators working hard and providing good service suffering for their mistakes.
    Just the other day on the 29 the operator could have justifiably killed half the passengers who were being jerks. Instead, he was Mr. Cool, and patiently kept things to a dull roar. I saw this and was like “that guy deserves a bonus.”

  3. david vartanoff says:

    Guys, you missed the point. TWU 250 is angry about new attendance/sick leave policies. This is serious business. Absenteeism drives huge overtime abuse. Tightening up this BS threatens the drivers in the pocketbook. On 31 Aug 333 0f 1593 scheduled were absent. 42 drivers worked “RDO” (overtime). Just another day in budget hell.

  4. Greg Dewar says:

    darnit, youre absolutely right. I think you’re probably the most vigilant on said issue (and it’s something I keep forgetting about). But this just reinforces why FMN is so important – Muni is getting killed with all the excess overtime. Good catch.

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