Luddite SEIU strikes over BART’s insistance to use email reports instead of long-hand

It is a little hard to fathom.  The Service Employees International Union and their allies that work for the Bay Area Rapid Transit District, have reached an agreement on economic terms to renew their contract, but decided to go on a full-blown strike Friday, inconveniencing tens of thousands of commuters, over disagreement on “work rules” which includes the union’s opposition to BART’s request that workers file management reports by email rather than by writing them out in long-hand.

The Luddites were 19th-century English textile artisans who protested against newly developed labor-saving machinery from 1811 to 1817.  The SEIU leadership in the BART negotiations are Luddites by that definition, who want high salaries and pensions, but who don’t want to allow BART to use even basic cost-saving technologies like a lap top and email system for communications.  SEIU’s opposition to use of what can only loosely be termed these days as “advanced technologies” includes insistence on personal delivery of paper paycheck stubs to employees at work locations rather than electronic transmission of them, according to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle.

One would think that the usually media-savy SEIU would not expose themselves to potentially bad press coverage by making their stand in a terribly disruptive strike over “work rules” as simple as opposing use of email.  Even a person of below average intelligence who lacks critical thinking skills can see that it is a stupid position for SEIU to take, given the prevalence and convenience of email today, and that BART management is right to insist on it, and deserves the upper hand in the public debate on it.  But the San Francisco media is generally favorable to the SEIU, and the fact that SEIU’s selfish strike rests on opposing email and electronic transmission of payroll deposits, even close to the heart of the Silicon Valley, will hardly get the SEIU any of the critical media coverages its idiotic strike deserves.

Imagine a world where the BART public employee union member who makes $271,458 a year managing traffic at the train storage yard in Oakland is forced to use email on the job against his will; or where the fare booth watcher at the Fremont station who makes $167,784 to be on the look-out for “jumpers” is required to receive confirmation of her paycheck by email rather than on a hand-delivered paper payroll receipt?  No way, if the Luddite masters at SEIU win their strike with the help of a complacent Bay Area media.