Monday, October 12, 2009

More on Luz y Fuerza

Carstens says that some 10,000 of the recently busted company's employees, or about 22 percent of the total, will be eligible for rehire. According to El Universal, a payroll of 8,500 is sufficient to run the company, which means that it had 600 percent of the staff necessary. Carstens also said that paying for the severance packages for the rest will cost from around $1 to $1.5 billion.

Calderón made a prime-time address to the nation to explain his decision, which he justified on mostly economic terms. That was an odd choice; he should have explained the move as more closely related to the union's chicanery. Most people assume such was the real motivation, and it's a legitimate reason. Instead, he made a somewhat disingenuous case that came across as arbitrary (is Luz y Fuerza more inefficient than Pemex, for example?).

[Edited from original form, see comments.]


jd said...

Hmm, I don't know - how is union-busting a legitimate reason when, as El Universal points out, the govt. focused on an obvious political nuisance (and one that, apparently, was at least somewhat more democratic in the Mexican union context) rather than a real heavyweight like SNTE or Pemex? Also, I didn't see the address but I can understand a focus on economics as substantively correct and good political framing in relation to the political battle.

pc said...

Union-busting was not the right term, at least not in the American sense of it, what with connatations of busting up workers who just want to organize. Whoops. What I mean is that the company's efficiency problems were pretty closely related to the union, which the inflated payroll illustrates. But the fact that the company was saddled with such a union was less of a focus of the address than the inefficiency of the company itself, as though it existed in a vacuum. Basically, the political angle of it was undersold.

pc said...

Here's the address if you want to read it.