The pre-season for the NFL starts this week and needless to say, I have my Brady Quinn jersey and my orange and brown pom poms ready to go! My team resides where my quarterback plays, so right now my team is the Cleveland Browns.
That’s Brady Quinn on the right. That other guy is Derek Anderson, also a quarterback.
I’m sure Derek is really nice and cool and plays a decent game or he wouldn’t be in the NFL, but can I make a teensy-weensy request? Send him somewhere else.
Brady should start for the Browns. ‘Nuff said.
It’s another great edition, made even better by DrRich’s unique voice in the commentary!
It’s that time again.
Time to renegotiate the contract between my hospital and the nurses.
It’s a time of over-the-top threats of take-aways and over-the-top attempts to agitate the nurses.
It’s a contest between good and evil that makes Lord of the Rings look like a segment of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.
It’s a time when the Administration threatens big bad stuff like taking away all funding for the nurses’ PPO health plan and the union counters by sending out an email with the cell phone number of the head negotiator and rallying all the nurses to harass call and make their opinions known.
Now, I’m watching this from the outside in; I’m merely a staff nurse who does not sit at the negotiating table.
And I will say that despite the fact that my union funds are sometimes spent on propositions I do not believe in, candidates I do not support and occasionally actions I do not condone, my working conditions are pretty tolerable (in the ER) and my paycheck is fantastic. So while I have issues with my union, I have to give credit where it is due.
I actually started to get caught up in the “oh, like hell they are!” mentality. Adrenaline climbing, “how DARE they!” running through my brain. Hell, there is even a flyer hung in the nurses’ bathroom, three feet in front of the commode exhorting us to come to a “picketing meeting” to discuss the evil Administration!
Then I started to wonder.
Why does it have to be like this?
Why the game playing?
First of all, it’s obvious to anyone who stops to think about it that the administration throws out “No funding for the PPO” type announcements because (a) health care is a hugely emotional topic and (b) it takes the focus off of other things they may not want to talk about, like salaries or work force conditions.
And it sure helps rally the troops from the Union standpoint when they do that! Tally ho! Grab the picket signs! Meet and agitate!
What would happen if the administration came to the table and laid everything out, truthfully and transparently. “Welcome, Union. Here is where we stand financially. Here is where we are hoping to be in 2012. We value our nurses and want to be able to provide the best for them within the budget we have to work with. What is the best way for us to do that?”
(That sound was 50 union reps having syncopal episodes.)
But it works both ways, too. How about the Union coming to the table in a similar fashion: “Well, Administration, there are certain benefits that our nurses have said are very important to them. We recognize that there are budgetary issues. How can we work together to maintain those benefits within the budget that you have (truthfully and transparently) put before us?”
No, I haven’t been smoking anything.
I’ve worked for hospitals where I was not represented by a union, and they give the very barest minimum they can to keep up with the local unionized hospitals. And I’ve watched Sutter try to decimate the nurses on the other side of the Bay.
So, in the end, I guess it really is all about the Administration wanting to take away everything they possibly can and the union fighting to keep everything we have and add a little more.
Does anyone else find that sad, or is it just me?