Thursday, June 11, 2009

Another Boneheaded Union Speeds Its Own Demise

According to Tuesday's Wall Street Journal, the Boston Globe's union employees rejected, by a 277-265 vote, management's package of wage cuts calculated to keep the paper operating.

I guess that means that just 7 employees will likely be responsible for delivering a death blow to the ailing, aged newspaper.

After years of being the subject of various celebrity investors in late 2006, the Boston Globe doesn't seem to be attracting any more white knights to peel it off of the New York Times Corporation.

What do you suppose those 7 union employees don't get about what is happening to daily newspapers in even large US cities, let alone smaller ones? They have been the victims of Schumpeterian dynamics for at least a decade.

Craigslist help give the sector a big, final push by thinning advertising revenue after basic economics and television news had gutted afternoon editions and newspapers several decades ago. Even if a few of the big dailies survive, you have to wonder how much they will still rely on printed editions, rather than online publication.

I laughed when I read this passage at the end of the Journal piece, quoting Guild (union) president Dan Totten,

"Globe workers and the New England community understand that the quality of The Boston Globe- an institution so vital to the life and culture of the region- depends on the fair treatment of the men and women who work so hard to produce it."

Talk about clueless! If the paper was so damned 'vital,' it wouldn't be having such profitability problems, or would have been sold or spun off by now.

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