Avoided Stupidity

23 05 2011

imageSo, no mail strike for now in Canada. See http://ca.news.yahoo.com/strike-averted-canada-post-workers-present-contract-proposal-002053197.html.

Maybe I’m a little disappointed, because of the chuckles I’m missing. I wanted to see the postal workers walk out, management locking them out (“You can’t quit, you’re fired. Sort of.”), then watch the rest of the country finally get around to signing up for all those paperless bills like they’ve meant to do. I wanted to see the end of the strike, where both sides breathing deeply and drunk on the punches of negotiation, re-emerge into a world that doesn’t need them anymore. For the families who might have lost income, no, that would be bad, but for the stupidity of union and management posturing, it would have been a fun show.

I’m not anti-union, not in principle, I’m not pro-management either. I’ve been on both sides. However, I’m anti-stupidity, anti-wasted energy and anti-empire, and the latter part of the 20th century and into the 21st has abounded with silly empires, 1 mile-to-the-gallon efficiency and enough stupidity that I suspect it comprises the bulk of the black matter of the universe. On both sides.

We all know the moronic nature of International Diplomacy, where each word is carefully chosen then dissected like a high school frog, feigned offenses are taken, postures are held and people who really should know better act like children. This is the model for management and union interaction of late. People saying things that veil reality in saccharine sound bites, everyone knows what they really mean, though they don’t say that outright. So when the Canadian Union of Postal Workers says that Canada Post’s latest proposals include important compromises, what they really mean is that they know they cannot break the backs of communications and economy like they could in the heyday of Jean-Claude Parrot. They know they are increasingly irrelevant and that a strike would only hasten their demise.

Instead of anyone admitting this, the face-saving nonsense of negotiations plays out. The earliest they can strike now is Friday, playing by the Geneva Convention of work disruption politics. The threat still has to be there, of course, until negotiations are done. But it is a lame duck threat, everyone knows it, and if the union were to thumb their nose, it would be stupidity of the first order in terms of their own job security. For the rest of us, it might simply be the start of the wave of the future. Whatever. I want to say stop wasting my time with all this labour drama. I’m not buying it. Like postage stamps. I haven’t been buying those much either.




6 responses

23 05 2011

An Addendum: “What are you doing?”
“Just wrote a blog on the averted mail strike.”
“We were going to have a mail strike?”

The defense rests.

23 05 2011
English Prof

I’d like to add a post but, being in Canada, it probably won’t arrive for a few weeks:(

31 05 2011

listen scott, you have not posted for more than week. no fair, getting me all interested in your blog, then nuthin…and to think i paid good $ for this. oh, wait.

31 05 2011

Yes. Oh wait.

1 06 2011
Chris Brown (not that one)

I still have 20 of the 44 stamps I bought at Christmas. Which doesn’t speak well of my list of friends, of course. But the point I’m making (or trying to make, anyway) is that the only stamps I buy are to send Christmas cards to the people I’m too lazy to touch base with by Skype, email, text, or any number of electronic ways I could muster at the drop of a hat.

And I still get mail delivered to my house (more or less) every day. And it’s all stuff I don’t want. I would actually pay these characters to go on strike.


2 06 2011

you have a greater trust in technology than me. wait till that solar flare comes … it’ll wipe out the power quicker and longer than any double vortex tornados.

bring back a version of the pony express, I say. helluva lot of people in rural areas and northern outposts rely on postal service not to mention the nation’s elderly – who don’t use computers – waiting for their cheques, not irrelevant to them. not at all.

that’s all …

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