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Friday
Aug262011

The Gray Lady Gets One Right 

The NLRB is trying to add 5,000 people to this line. (Source: istockphoto)

In his continuing apology tour for suggesting that Tea Party members are waging jihad on the American people, New York Times columnist Joe Nocera is now admitting that some liberal policies aren’t perfect.  In fact, the quick-tempered writer even admits that some of the Obama Administration’s actions are hurting the bleak job market.  

In his August 22 column, Nocera writes that members of the Obama Administration are “paralyzing” job creation.  What has this liberal agitator lashing out against the President?

The National Labor Relations Board and its wayward case against aeronautical giant Boeing: that’s what.     

The N.L.R.B. is suing Boeing because it built a nearly one billion-dollar facility in South Carolina and hired 5,000 workers to assemble its new 787 Dreamliner aircraft.  Boeing operates a similar facility in Puget Sound, Washington, but decided it needed two plants to keep up with growing demand.   This all sounds simple enough, but Nocera explains, 

The Obama administration, however, has a different plan.  In April, the National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint against Boeing, accusing it of opening the South Carolina plant to retaliate against the union, which has a history of striking at contract time.  The N.L.R.B.’s proposed solution, believe it or not, is to move all the Dreamliner production back to Puget Sound, leaving those 5,000 workers in South Carolina twiddling their thumbs.

Nocera continues, 

a fair-minded person would have to acknowledge that the N.L.R.B.’s action is exactly the kind of overreach that should embarrass Democrats who claim to care about job creation.  It’s paralyzing, is what it is … That is what is so jarring about this case — and not just for Boeing.  Without any warning, the rules have changed. Uncertainty has replaced certainty.  Other companies have to start wondering what other rules could soon change.  It becomes a reason to hold back on hiring.

This sounds similar to what I wrote over two months ago about the Boeing fiasco.  A little more colorfully, I explained, 

The NLRB’s lawsuit is reminiscent of “Calvinball,” the chaotic game Bill Watterson created for his iconic comic strip, Calvin and Hobbes.  Calvinball is combination of team sports and playground games that has only one rule: the game is never played the same way twice.  This is the confusing environment our federal government expects private businesses to operate.   From one day to the next, corporations worry that an aggressive (and unelected) bureaucracy will reinvent the wheel and rewrite the rules of the game.

In Boeing’s case, its leaders made a decision to build a massive new plant, spent one billion dollars to construct it, hired 1,000 workers (now 5,000), and then the feds demanded they shut it down …  

Perhaps if [Obama] got his regulatory cronies out of the way, Boeing, and other businesses large and small, could resume hiring and get things back on track.

Sadly, the N.L.R.B. lawsuit against Boeing continues.  However, it is nice to hear a voice from the Gray Lady’s perspective admonishing the silly case, even if it is a little late to the party.  

 

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