FedEx comes out swinging against bailouts, unions

Wow. More companies being put at competitive disadvantage by the Democrats in Washington should follow FedEx’s lead.

According to the Wall Street Journal, language in the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2009 would make it easier for FedEx’s workers to unionize, which FedEx says would increase its costs by 30 percent.

UPS, FedEx’s main competitor, is a completely unionized shop (I was once hired there in college, but declined. I was explicitly told that promotions were based strictly on time served — not on merit — so I opted to work at Subway, instead).

FedEx claims UPS snuck the language into the bill, which has alread passed the house. That sounds likely, considering how the unions are dominating the government’s takeover of GM and the forced bankruptcy and sale of Chrysler. Too bad Ford isn’t making it’s own commercials attacking the government’s plan (but of course, Ford stands to gain, so maybe the automaker should thank Obama & Co.).

Here’s a spoof FedEx made of the UPS “whiteboard” commercials:

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What Jon Stewart got right

There’s been a huge kerfuffle over the run-up “battle” between Jon Stewart and Jim Cramer and the subsequent interview. Some are attacking Cramer, some are attacking Stewart.

Again, this is a case of focusing too much on the personalities and ignoring the issues.

The “Daily Show” interview was a really great watch, and yes, Stewart did let Cramer have it. But Cramer was gracious and a bit too apologetic.

However, there was a very important underlying theme to the entire conversation. It’s in the third clip below, when Stewart opened up the criticism of the media.

What is the responsibility of the people who cover wall street? who are you responsible to?

Stewart asked Cramer, who then said it’s difficult for reporters to come back from talking to the treasury secretary and then pointing out that the secretary was lying. To which Stewart, correctly, quipped:

I’m under the assumption, and maybe this is purely ridiculous, that you don’t just take their word at face value. That you actually then go around and try and figure it out.

Then Stewart hit the nose on the head:

There is the letter of the law and the intent of the law, and I think clearly it would be a great service to the American public if there was an organization out there not, just the SEC, but a news organization that was trying to maintain the intent of this and force companies to still have growth and profit in a way that but not in a way that burns down the entire field.

It’s easy to point fingers at anyone after the fact, but Stewart’s assessment of the media is dead on. Watchdog journalism has gone out of the window on complicated issues. Yes, journalists are there after some fiasco to make sure the public knows whom to blame, but the media has done an awful job during the past 15 years at being the watchdogs we all say we want to be.

Presidents Bush and Clinton got blamed for not enough attention to terrorism before Sept. 11, 2001 — but the media wasn’t covering that story either. Nor did the media do a good job at fact-checking the run-up to the war in Iraq. The same is true with this financial mess.

Stewart is often crass and usually there to be funny, but on this one he’s right. It’s sad that it takes the anchor of a late-night fake news show to point this out.

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