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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

December 31, 2013 at 7:00 AM

Boeing 777X: A new ‘princeling’ class and a reason to negotiate

A new ‘princeling’ class

Your editorial was correct when it said “the global economy has changed.” [“Build the 777X, and the future,” Opinion, Dec. 29].

A new, worldwide “princeling” class has been created. This class crosses all political, ethnic, gender and skills lines. It’s made up of probably only a few million people and controls the majority of the world’s wealth. Besides the obscene wealth, one of its character traits is that its members feel entitled to praise, adoration and positions of power over the remaining billions of people.

The Boeing corporate princelings, in their request to the state for concessions to locate the 777X plant there, had demands that Ron Judd said “would have sent even an 18th century French aristocrat reaching for the acid-reflux med.”

I read that Boeing is currently making 20 percent profit on the 777. What generates that? Is it the corporate princelings sitting in their offices in Chicago or the workers on the factory floor in Everett who have been using their knowledge and skills to efficiently produce a quality product? I suspect it’s the latter.

Robert Kacel, Seattle

Wait years to negotiate

Are Boeing Machinists and their union Leaders dopes or does it just seem that way because of media reporting? The union has no leverage at this time to be negotiating. Boeing has positioned itself over the years to have all the chips in its hands.

Take the deal being offered by Boeing. After the infrastructure is built here and 777Xs are being rolled out the factory doors, with many new orders in hand, then the union will have some leverage — even if it is eight, 10, or 12 years down the road. Then, the union can right their perceived wrongs offered under the proposed contract.

Right now Boeing can leave for an eager state and it’s all over for the Puget Sound area. Take the offer now, keep your jobs, with Boeing’s promise to build here, which is probably Boeing’s preference, and negotiate when you have some chips.

Is this something only an outsider can see? Are the Machinists too emotional, too close to the forest and overestimating their abilities or positions? Have patience and look at the long-term picture. We’ll all be better off in the years to come.

Rod Mattson, Des Moines

0 Comments | More in Boeing | Topics: 777X

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