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Biden’s Rail Debacle Signals Shakeup

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Biden’s Rail Debacle Signals Shakeup

Biden prioritized efficiency over resiliency.

Scranton Joe’s decision to side with rail companies over rail workers in the intra-industry debate was stunning. Over the last few weeks, the companies risked a nationwide shutdown of freight rail because they wouldn’t give their workers any paid sick days. This despite the fact that they have made huge profits and paid out around $200 billion in stock buybacks and dividends over the last 12 years.  

While there has been and will be much political analysis about the decision, one of the most overlooked aspects of the whole mess is the thinking of labor union bosses.  

When they cut a deal in September, they signed onto an agreement that didn’t address the core concern of their workforce: paid sick days. Sure, there was the addition of one personal day, as well as tweaks around the edges to the penalty system to allow a few days of unpaid leave for medical appointments—so long as they would be scheduled 30 days in advance,…



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