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Why did Local 171 go out on strike?

Click here for the story behind the story.

The Fall edition of the IAM Journal focuses on the upcoming election on November 5, 2002―the issues, the candidates and how your vote can help put North America back on track.

Read the online edition of the IAM Journal at:

Winners of the 2002 IAM Photography Contest.

First Place
Edward W. Griffith,
Local Lodge 2061
Rockledge, Florida, United Space Alliance
Ready for Blast Off
Click here to see the winning entries.

Smart Enough to Vote
Voter Turnout
A Fresh Approach to Human Rights
IAM Leads on Health Care
Don't Vote Don't Vent

Another HPWO and Harley Success Story

Gore Attacks Bush On Economy

Homeland Security Stalemate

Get Your Convention Gear Check out gear for the 2004 IAM Convention


Executive Council

International President 
R. Thomas Buffenbarger 

Secretary Treasurer
Donald E. Wharton 

GVP Western 
Lee Pearson 

GVP Canada
Dave Ritchie 

GVP Midwest 
Alex M. Bay 

GVP Headquarters
Robert V. Thayer

GVP Southern
George Hooper 

GVP Eastern
Warren L. Mart 

GVP Transportation
Robert Roach, Jr.


Thursday,  November 7, 2002


Election Outcome: Bad News for Workers
Working families face an uncertain future for the next two years as an anti-worker majority seized congressional control and began pushing a pro-business agenda. “We lost this battle,” said IP Tom Buffenbarger, “but the war goes on.” He said the IAM and its allies will continue the fight to save U.S. and Canadian jobs.

“Our top priority remains keeping high-wage and middle-class jobs,” Buffenbarger said. “This union will continue to fight to keep jobs and stop the hemorrhaging of work overseas,” he added. “We will continue to rally against trade policies that work to de-industrialize our nations. The fight for jobs in manufacturing across North America is a battle that must be waged and won.”

With Republicans gaining control of both the White House and Congress, the Bush administration plans speedy action on extending his massive tax cuts for the wealthy, rolling back regulations on Big Business and privatizing Social Security.

Buffenbarger Receives NPA Award
IP Tom Buffenbarger was honored this week by the non-profit National Policy Association (NPA) for his leadership role in creating successful business-labor partnerships.

Accepting the NPA’s 2002 Gold Medal award on behalf of 730,000 active and retired IAM members, Buffenbarger focused on the need for a national jobs policy and the millions of industrial jobs lost during the past two years. “Think of the human cost,” said Buffenbarger. “Whole communities have been devastated. Unless we call a halt to the demolition of our industrial economy, more of the same is surely on the way.

“It is a complex problem,” said Buffenbarger. “To address it successfully will require us to come together across the conventional dividing lines in our society and work to ensure the general welfare.”

Past recipients of the NPA Gold Medal Award are a diverse group including: Frank Carlucci, Linda Chavez Thomson; Paul O’Neill, Stephen Yokich, George P. Schultz and Gen. George C. Marshall.

Wall Street Watchdog Resigns Under Cloud
The sticky issue of corporate corruption, as in WorldCom and Enron, lurks in the wings as the GOP celebrates it big win. Hardly noticed amid the political hoopla swirling about the election results was the low-profile resignation of Bush’s handpicked corporate watchdog. Bush chose Harvey L. Pitt, a former lawyer for the securities industry, to oversee the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Pitt resigned under a cloud after his ham-handed efforts to “reform” the SEC into a more corporate-friendly agency drew blistering congressional scrutiny.

The SEC faces a massive clean-up effort after the spectacular bankruptcies and fraudulent practices at one high-flying Wall Street darling after another. Pitt blundered from one crisis to another, and in the process, finally exasperated his White House sponsor. That led to his resignation, a resignation that all-but disappeared in the election night hoopla.

Pitt’s pitiful performance irked even Wall Streeters anxious to put an end to the seamy disclosures that tarnished one corporate icon after another.

Aloha Airlines Receives Loan Guarantee
Troubled Aloha Airlines became one of the few airlines to receive approval for a loan guarantee from the Air Transportation Stabilization Board (ATSB). Congress created the ATSB in the wake of the 9-11 attacks to assist airlines affected by the significant reduction in passenger air travel.

Aloha Airlines received conditional approval for a $40.5 million loan guarantee as part of a total $45 million loan package.

“We are pleased the ATSB recognizes Aloha Airlines’ need for assistance,” said IAM General Vice President Robert Roach, Jr., “but any changes to collective bargaining agreements should come as a result of an agreement between a company and its employees, not as a government mandate.”

Negotiations between the Machinists Union and Aloha Airlines are scheduled to begin this week on agreements that become amendable on January 1, 2003. The IAM represents 1,700 Aloha Airlines employees in the Mechanic & Related and Clerical classifications.

Rail Negotiations Stalled
Negotiations between Machinists, Sheet Metal Workers and the National Rail Labor Coalition (NLRC) continued last week in Washington, D.C. with the assistance of a federal mediator. No progress was reported in resolving open issues for the more than 8,000 IAM members employed at Class I Freight Rail Carriers.

Separately, the Transportation Communications Union (TCU) and the NLRC scheduled an arbitration in late January to settle outstanding health & welfare and wage issues in their negotiations. The outcome of that arbitration could impact the IAM’s discussions with the NLRC, and as a result, negotiations will not reconvene until February 26-27, 2003 in Washington, D.C.