According to CNN, Bank of America will extend credit to Republic Window & Door, the Chicago factory where laid-off workers were engaging in a sit-in. Now Republic will presumably be able to make payroll for the federally mandated 60 days, and perhaps even reopen for business. Labor just won something! Happy Christmas!
About 200 laid-off factory workers are all having a magical sit-in in a closed plant in Chicago, because 1933 just broke out. The Republic Windows and Doors employees, members of the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America, have been occupying the window factory ever since management announced their abrupt, immediate layoffs, without pay, in violation of federal law. Republic Windows and Doors had their credit cut off by Bank of America, which just got a cool $25 billion from the Treasury, in order to help them, uh, unfreeze credit. But it's an old-fashioned labor/management standoff, with a big evil bank involed, and hey, Barack Obama came out in support of the workers this weekend. Maybe he will be a liberal!
The writers strike is truly, finally, mercifully over. Here's what it means to you, the crazed television junkie hustling madly for your next fix: Writers come back right away for Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Tina Fey hustles Saturday Night Live back on the air Feb. 23rd as host while her show 30 Rock may or may not get five episodes out before the end of the season, depending on Alec Baldwin's availability. Scripted shows that will return at all this season will come back roughly between mid-March and mid-April, including CSI, Desperate Housewives, Two and a Half Men, the Office, Grey's Anatomy and House. Heroes probably returns in the fall, torture-fest 24 not until next year. The point is, start clearing space on your TiVo yesterday. After the jump, union booster Fey's 30 Rock character takes in a lesson in hardball negotiation tactics — for managers — in an episode the WGA probably did not watch closely enough.
The Writers Guild of America strike that has crippled our nation's entertainment industry these last few months will end today, once striking writers vote to approve the deal hammered out last weekend by their management and the producers' guild. Wouldn't it be funny if they rejected it, though? We're finally getting to the zero hour where the strike might affect films in production, not just crappy TV shows! This is their chance to wipe Hollywood off the face of the Earth! But they probably won't, because they all miss getting paid. In today's Times, David Carr asks, "who won"? Short answer: the writers! Truthful answer? Enjoy receiving internet residuals three years after the pilot you were unable to shop didn't get picked up, guys! (Of course, the strike cannot officially end until Bruce Vilanch sings.) [NYT] NB: Copy-editors strike continues!
The writers strike is all but over after three long months, and following today's voting, writers are expected to get back to work by Wednesday. The strike cost Guild members about $270 million, and there will be a bloody and bitter renegotiation in three years. In the meantime, writers receive a flat fee for work that appears on the internets, and after three years "that fee becomes 2% of some of revenue the studios receive." And studios are very good at pretending they don't make any money on the internets. On the plus side, now the actors probably won't strike. And that would've actually shut down Hollywood.
The city's immigrant workers (and the National Labor Relations Board) are threatening to take away this town's best curry bo? 22 Saigon Grill delivery men claimed they weren't being paid minimum wage—just $1.60 an hour— and two of the restaurant's three locations fired them when they had the gall to complain. These immigrants have gone too far! Deport them all.