Last week, it was concrete workers whining that $80,000 (along with 100% of their benefits taken care of) was a reason to walk off the World Trade Center site for an illegal strike. Then 45,000 Verizon landline workers took to the picket lines, daring the company to cut their excessive benefits—even as Verizon has lost more than 50% of its landline subscribers in the past five years.
On Tuesday, 60 minimum wage workers at Central Park's Boathouse Restaurant walked off the job carrying signs that read "Stop the Discrimination, Illegal Firings and Harassment," complaining, "They treat us like we are nothing." The fact is, a number were laid off because business at the Boathouse sucks.
In Pittsburgh, 50 drivers, mechanics and service workers with the Beaver County Transit Authority have voted unanimously to strike after rejecting a proposed contract that doesn't protect whopping overtime pay.
What the hell is going on here? Have these entitled workers missed the news flash that national unemployment is locked at 9+%, while economists warn that a second grand recession following the 2007 collapse is lurking? The New York Times reports, "The economy is much weaker than it was at the outset of the last recession in December 2007, with most major measures of economic health—jobs, incomes, output and industrial production—worse today than then. And growth has been so weak that almost no ground has been recouped, even though a recovery technically started in June 2009."
Get a grip, people. Be thankful you have jobs and recognize the reality that the 1950s are over. You should be partially paying for benefits. You don't automatically deserve overtime. And many businesses continue to suffer as the Second Great Depression lingers on and on. I cannot imagine feeling so entitled that I would walk away from a well-paying job and risk my financial well being because I've been spoiled for so many years. Welcome to 2011.