Tuesday, November 22, 2016

THE RELENTLESS TEAMSTER

       Fred Zuckerman, who came very close to winning the presidency of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, has emerged from this month’s election as “the relentless Teamster.”
          Instead of returning to his Louisville home base to contemplate what might have been, Zuckerman told a thousand listeners to a post-elction telephone debriefing: “We’re not waiting for the next election.” His declared strategy is to urge his Teamster United adherents to run against Hoffa loyalists heading Teamsters locals.
          Zuckerman tallied more votes in the United States than incumbent General President James P. Hoffa. However Candian Teamsters handed the victory, another five-year term, to Hoffa. The final count: 102,401 for Hoffa to 96,377 for Zuckerman.
          Teamsters United candidates managed to win six of the International’s 22 vice presidential slots. In the Central Region: Avral Thompson, Tony Jones, Bob Kopystynsky, and Bill Frisky; in the Southern Region: John Palmer and Kim Schultz.
          Zuckerman’s drive to eventually oust the Hoffa administration centers on his opposition to the cozy relationships with bosses, which have led to continuing allegations of corruption; concessionary contracts; and imposing contracts rejected by the rank and file.
         

                     

Saturday, November 19, 2016

GOLDEN WORDS

Hillary, oh Hillary
Why did you run
did hubris blind you
to what Donald
would brand you:
crooked Hillary-

Your golden words
cost Wall Streeters
$225,000 a speech
a sum that resonated
with working stiffs
in MI, WI, Ohio

The added costs
were not only
Donald’s ugly words
but the four-year
nightmare America
must endure

(Written in November, 2016 as I reflected on the reasons why thousands of working class Democrats in the battleground states--either voted for Donald Trump or left their ballots blank on the presidential line. Hillary Clinton charged in the realm of $225,000 a speech, more than an ordinary worker could even dream of piling up in a lifetime--and she made more than 90 of those speeches from 2013 to 2015.)




Sunday, November 13, 2016

MIDNIGHT in AMERICA

In the minute before midnight
I ask
Donald, will you
take us
into the darkness
you promised?

Or will the strong man
turn back
in the face
of reality
or the uproar
in the streets?

There will be a dawn
after you
there always is
and America will
shine brightly again
despite you.

(Written on Nov. 13, 2016--50 days before
Donald Trump’s inauguration.)



Friday, November 4, 2016

The Teamsters November Bomb

           The Teamsters Independent Investigations Officer Joseph diGenova has tossed a bomb into the closing days of voting for the union’s hierarchy revealing extensive investigations are underway into whether Teamsters officials and employers enjoyed just pleasantly cozy or seriously corrupt relationships.
            In the opening blast, International Secretary Treasurer Ken Hall was accused by diGenova of stonewalling his demand for many internal union emails through delaying tactics and “mysteriously” disappearing documents.
            Teamsters International President James P. Hoffa has been given 90 days to consider bringing internal union charges, based on diGenova’s allegations, against Hall. Otherwise, the case would go to the Teamsters Independent Review Officer Benjamin Civiletti for his determination.

            The allegations against Hall have popped into public view just a few days before the mail ballot deadline for control of Teamster international hierarchy. Teamsters United, the opposition slate whose presidential candidate is Fred Zuckerman, urged Teamsters who want to get rid of the Hoffa administration to mail their ballots by Nov. 9 in order to meet the vote count deadline.


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