Sunday, March 18, 2007

PSAC and Pierre Theberge vs. Glenn Lowry and the MOMA Unions


18 days ago I was in Ottawa to see the wonderful Ron Mueck show that they have there. Upon leaving I was surprised to see what looked like a picket line blocking me from getting out. I asked the woman with the megaphone what was happening, and was told theat it wasn't a picket line, but more like a job action. Apparently management at the National Gallery has been dragging it's heels with regards to a negotiating a new contract. The union's side of the story is all here.

Now what makes this doubly interesting is that two weeks earlier, it had been front page news in New York that the guy who runs MOMA had had a super secret sweet side deal with regards to getting paid just so that the unions at MOMA wouldn't get super duper pissed off at the gazillions more he was earning versus what they were earning.

As M. Theberge has his hospitality and expense reports made very public in an extremely timely fashion, and the auditor general of Canada sticks their nose in every now and again, I'm not terribly convinced that there could be (or could have been) a super secret sweet side deal made with trustees of the National Gallery. However, at about the same time that Mr. Lowry was figuring out how to make things more difficult for the MOMA union, the federal government made a super secret sweet side deal with some companies here in Quebec that enabled some advertising executives to at first get rich, and then go to jail, and as I am not entirely certain that the auditor general looks at money being spent that is not the government's, it might be worthwhile for someone to spend an hour or two researching this, because if one member of the Groupe Bizot is doing somthing, I would bet you dollars to doughnuts that the other members know about it, too.

Oh, and for anyone interested, this is just one reason why super secret sweet side deals that bring ethics into question are so gosh darn important. I should not be able to even fantasize in my wildest dreams about M. Theberge doing something 'not kosher' in order to shaft the union. Unfortunately, due to Mr. Lowry's behavior, I can. This is not a good thing. Or in plainer terms, if you hang out with the Hell's Angel's it is quite likely that some people will think you are a member, even if you are not.

[addition Monday AM: I almost forgot how last July, another member of the Groupe Bizot got caught doing something wrong.]

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