Unhappy with proposed changes to health care benefits and pension plans, dozens of Lockheed Martin workers started picketing Monday at a North Texas plant where F-35 stealth fighter jets are made, as well as outside flight test centers in two other states.
The strike by Fort Worth-based Machinists Local 776 began after the 3,600 union members voted overwhelmingly Sunday to reject the aerospace company’s latest contract offer. Union members oppose the company’s proposed changes to the health care and pension plans — including higher deductibles and co-payments — and eliminating pension for newly hired workers, said union spokesman Bob Wood.
They’re cutting off their nose to spite the face.
With support for the F-35 program bleeding profusely, any negative news about the program raises the risk of either cancellation, or truncation. And if there are fewer or no jets to be built, all those union workers are going to find themselves unemployed.
Spare me all the talk about how unions are vital for protecting workers. The days of the merciless exploitation of workers are over. Nowdays, unions simply raise the costs of doing business, above and beyond the already ridiculous regulatory burdens the government has imposed.