By Duggan Flanakin
Remember that rail strike that President Biden saved us all from just in the nick of time – right before the November elections? It was in late September that Pal Joey announced a deal between rail companies and union negotiators that staved off a “real economic crisis.”
As Joe himself explained, “The alternative was just not thinkable. If, in fact, they’d gone on a strike, the supply chains in this country would’ve come to a screeching halt. We would’ve seen a real economic crisis.”
He proclaimed his handiwork as a “win” for everyone and the U.S. economy. The railroads boasted it was the “most generous contract in modern history.” [emphasis, links added]
Hardly mentioned during the hoop-la over the “deal” in which rail workers won a 24-percent wage increase over a 5-year period (dating back to 2020), as well as an average $11,000 immediate payout upon ratification was this caveat:
The Association of American Railroads quietly added that “the deal is tentative” and subject to ratification by union members.
But no worries? Who in their right mind would turn this down? Greed, after all, is a disease that solely affects Republicans and “the rich” (which excludes billionaire Democrat donors).
Virtuous union bosses assured us that Amtrak would quickly resume its full schedule – especially its route in which Washington crosses to Delaware.
The election thus went smoothly enough. Peace (despite Ukraine) in our time. Afghanistan? Ho Hum. Inflation? A myth. The coming polar vortex at a time when fuel prices have escalated and there may even be shortfalls? Not yet on the radar. Sam Bankman-Fried? Still celebrated by The New York Times.
But wait, you say! The rail strike was not averted – just delayed. Looks now like it will show up just about the same time as that polar vortex. The deep freeze is on the horizon – just after the Georgia Senate runoff.
NPR itself tells us that four of twelve freight rail unions have now voted against the Biden deal – the five-year contract that would have gotten him through the 2026 midterms. All 115,000 freight rail workers may be “home for Christmas.”
Surely this is BAD NEWS! About 40 percent of U.S. freight moves by rail – and the Association of American Railroads estimates a national rail shutdown could cost $2 billion a day in lost economic output – right in the heart of the holiday shopping season! Even Biden’s precious Amtrak would once again be off track.
Except that in her final glorious act, Nancy Pelosi could save the season. Congress, you see, has the power to order the rail workers back on the job.
The Railway Labor Act allows Congress to take a variety of measures to keep the trains running, and Nancy might like nothing better than to impose a temporary “fix” that would kick the problem over to whoever ends up being the GOP Speaker of the House.
But would they? The facts are that a rail strike plays right into the hands of the Biden administration’s war on coal. Coal travels largely by rail, you may recall.
Moreover, Joe Biden has for half a century portrayed himself as the nation’s greatest champion of Big Labor – and Dennis Pearce, president of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, says that any Congressional intervention would be a blow to the unions.
Fortunately for the Biden Democrats, it is a long time until the next election, plenty of time for any short-term anger to dissipate.
Federal data show that about 70 percent of domestic coal is transported wholly or partly on railroad tracks.
Shutting down freight rail would cause an abrupt halt to 70 percent of the coal that fuels power plants, factories, and (ultimately) electric vehicles.
In Joe Manchin’s West Virginia, coal is shipped mostly by rail to the ports of Baltimore and Norfolk-Newport News.
Railroads also move about 40 percent of intercity freight – food products, animal feed, chemicals, automobiles, and other consumer products for which there are not enough trucks or truck drivers to take up the slack. The state’s economy would be crushed.
In Wyoming, another state that did not vote for Biden, coal producers have already been facing shortfalls of trains to ship their low-sulfur coal to eager customers in more populated areas.
Coal production in the Mountain State is down from a record 446 million tons in 2008 to under 200 million tons through October 15 of this year – despite high prices of nearly $17.50 per ton. A rail strike could force the entire state into bankruptcy.
But that’s the goal. Over a year ago, Biden’s “climate envoy” John Kerry declared that his boss’s goal was to end U.S. coal production within eight years. “By 2030 in the United States,” he said in Gleneagles at COP26, “we won’t have coal. We will not have coal plants.”
And less than a month ago, President Biden reiterated that intention, claiming that coal plants are too expensive to operate and boasting that: “No one is building new coal plants because they can’t rely on it…We’re going to be shutting these plants down all across America and having wind and solar.”
The “rail strike” is a made up crisis that Biden has nothing to do with curing.
But the media, and greg, will say he did.
Biden is an unelected puppet and does nothing, sundowns by 3pm, and is in charge of nothing.
Yep. Trains carry coal. Were they to stop, the economy would slow down. If you don’t want the economy to slow down, you don’t want the trains to stop. You don’t seem to grasp the connection. Biden and other responsible people DO grasp it, and will cross partisan lines to support the effort to prevent it from happening. Because they’re responsible people.
Maybe the Freedom Caucus will prefer to blather about windmills rather than deal with the current problem. Maybe they WANT the current problem as an exploitable political opportunity. The LAST thing they want is declining inflation, continued economic growth, and Ukraine prevailing over Putin.
What are you even blathering about?
Using Biden and the WEF’s methods, if we just stopped the trains carrying coal, we’d stop burning the coal.
And according to Biden (“I’ll END fossil fuels”) and the WEF, the best way to stop using fossil fuels it to cause crises and then “end” the transmission of fuel (Nordstream, the railways, etc).
I don’t know who you idiots think you’ll fooling. Once you starting killing people off from lack of fuel, I hope you have a place to hide.
Your argument is bogus, Nobody believes in an instantaneous transition to renewable energy. That’s a strawman. The need to push green energy now is BECAUSE the transition can’t be instantaneous. It will take years. Decades. Disrupting economic activity only pushes the development of sustainable energy farther into the future, while the problems fossil fuel dependence are creating only get worse.
Nobody believes in an instantaneous transition to renewable energy.
You’d better tell that to your master’s who started the Ukraine war and blew up the Nordstream. That’s there position, and yours.
And greg, who exactly voted on this bogus “need” and “transition” to “green energy,” which is just wind and solar and cannot possibly fill the needs of those living on the planet?
None of us did.
You’re push for green energy is illegal, and totalitarian. Turn back now before we stop you.
Actually Trump did it, while wearing his Photoshopped SuperTrump costume.
Myself, and millions of other Americans who supported and voted for Democratic Party candidates. Preparing for the future is a central part of the party platform.
Is that why idiot Biden cancelled pipelines and new drilling? To “transition”? No, fool, he did that to make his foreign investments in fossil fuels energy more valuable and to put more money into his and the Biden Crime Family’s pockets, at the expense of the US taxpayer.
Obama certainly doesn’t believe in the transition since instead of installing solar panels and windmills, he put in a massive propane tank for his supplemental power needs.
Solar and wind are supplements. They can NEVER provide the energy we need. Yet, you leftists are strangling research and manufacturing with exorbitant energy costs and ignoring anything other than wind and solar. Why? Because THAT’S where the quick cash is NOW.
It appears you are a science denier. Facts don’t care about politics or your feelings.
There is hyperinflation, economic collapse, and Ukraine is about to become a DMZ for Russia.
Now I know you’re just a turd being paid to write stupid garbage.
Yeah, like I said, it runs counter to the picture of doom you’re selling. No belief in Democratic Doom, no chance for Trump’s Return from Elba.
What I say is proven fact. Our economy is collapsing, there is hyperinflation, and Russia is setting up a DMZ in Ukraine.
Speaking of a loser lying about “doom,” you said Trump would ruin the country.
He saved it. So much so you had to rig an election and installed man who is senile and literally pooping his pants while on the job.
Elba? Pretty sure Trump is living free in Florida, and the current front-runner for the 2024 election.
I think the coal producers and states not compromised by this illegal regime should just decide on their own how to sell their coal, and make their own deals.
NO ONE in the US or any other nation voted for Bill Gates or Klause Schwab. Their “push” for green energy is an attack on the world, and one that must be countered.
Science is not on their side. Neither are voting citizens.
AAR said that 467,000 trucks and trailers would be needed to move the amount of rail-bound freight per day in the event of a strike.
Nothing moves in California with its anti truck policies.
Diesel shortage looms large.
Why wont Buffet bend on sick pay? He is making hand over fist money transporting crude from Canada since the pipeline shut down.
The Unions that agreed/settled for the money said they stand with their brothers and wont cross the line.
Bread and cereals.
The four railroads typically move more than 80% of the agricultural freight traffic, according to the National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA). “We are looking for alternatives now to position our product,” said Mike Seyfert, president and CEO of NGFA. “We have zero elasticity right now. There are zero drivers, and the barge situation with the low water levels has only added to this challenge.”
What good is Pete Butplug transportation secretary if congress has to handle his job?
The Secretary of Transportation formulates and administers policy and oversees regulation. He has no legislative powers, nor can he order private sector employees back to work.
Really? I wasn’t even aware we had one. Is he back on “paternity leave” or is he just on a taking-it-up-the-ass vacation?
What happened to idiot Biden’s big miracle “agreement” before the elections? More smoke and mirrors to prop up the failed Democrat party? What a total phony-ass liar and loser.
So only congress can make slaves? Forcing people to work? Where is that in the constitution?
Idiot biden wants to transfer the accountability to republicans who currently have no majority in the House. The marxist leader pelosi could solve this today without any assistance from republicans. This is another effort on the part of the deceitful democrats to somehow make this a republican problem.
biden sucks plain and simple
Wind and solar is a joke as a continuous reliable source for baseload energy. It is not reliable, and it does not produce the amount of energy necessary to support the American economy. It is a fool’s errand. It is time to return to full dominate independent energy production.
That was the only agreement he got; one to delay the strike until after the election. He and Democrats are scum.