Old 02-18-2014, 04:54 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 114

Roadkill wrote in part, " the world would probably be better off without them". I'm not picking a fight with you Roadkill. I agree with what most have posted on this subject. However, I retired from the rail road after a 32 plus year career, over 30 as a mainline locomotive engineer. As most people know, if you work for the rr, in most crafts, you are required to belong to a union. I agree that in many industries, the unions are not needed, however, on the railroads, the unions "are a necessary evil." Has anyone ever heard of "getting railroaded"? That's NOT a term someone simply dreamed up!!
In my career, I was not pro union, or pro company, I was pro me. As many know, you have to strictly follow rr operating procedures, as well as your union contract provisions. These things and others, such as simply doing your job and doing it safely, can make the rr industry quite a challenge.
I had a great career. I wouldn't be able to do the things that I do now had I not hired on years ago and stuck with it.
And speaking of retirement. The Railroad Retirement Board oversees our retirement system. The railroads and the employees each put in 50% of the funds that go into the retirement system. NO taxpayer money goes into it at all. I can't give you the % of income per payday that the employees put into it, but I can tell you it's higher than paying SS taxes. And when you retire your retirement income is higher than SS as well.
So, all in all, in many industries the union is a bad thing, but in some, " a necessary evil", needed to protect the workers from the wrath of the company.
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