Petshark: Talking Stick
Entries with the tag: nhlpa
I feel like I'm going through the stages of grief here. Just when I'm ready to move on to acceptance of the lockout, Douglas Murray smashes the NHLPA's nice PR record to bits with this explanation:
“It’s tough to explain. People see how much money we make and we have, but I would ask them what would you say if the owner of the company you work for would just come and tell you, ‘OK, we’re taking away 20 percent of your salary.’
“And you ask why, and they say I just want to make more money. I don’t think you’d be that happy. Most people would probably switch jobs or at least not be very happy in that work environment.” -Working the Corners
Ugh. I guess not everyone realizes companies have been doing just that-- asking employees to take pay cuts-- for years now. Maybe it isn't called a pay cut. Maybe it's pressure to become a partner and invest in the firm, even though you know you will have much less in your pocket at the end of the year. Maybe you're offered stock options instead of cash. One way or another, most of us are getting squeezed and switching jobs isn't so easy.
Those who wage wars rarely fight them. That is something we all know but in the modern western world we like to forget how many people are subject to the whims of the fortunate few. Those facts don't jibe with our notion of the free pursuit of happiness and all that. We know it's a jungle out there but when folks get put out of work, have their lives tossed around like poker chips on a table they aren't even sitting at, it still stings.
Mark Purdy wrote a piece for the Mercury News about what an NHL lockout means for interested parties who are not involved in the negotiations. In it, he calls said interested parties "stakeholders." Wow but that sounds more mighty than it is. Satellite businesses may have a stake in NHL games, but I wouldn't say they hold that stake. It seems more like they can mine it until the real owner--the NHL-- shows up to put in a parking lot, or empty that lot by locking out the players. The people who choose to enter the conflict are rarely the ones who really get hurt. If they were, they might choose differently.
There’s nothing to report from Shark Territory, but it’s been a long time since I posted anything so here are some thoughts on the latest lack of news.
A little over a week ago, Kevin Kurz asked if the Sharks owners should be allowed to profit from their NHL team. I winced at the word “allowed.” Lyle Richardson asked why the team is not profitable in his article from the 18th. But to ask if the owners should be allowed to make money is absurd. There is no law, rule or viable lobby that argues team owners should not be allowed to profit from their teams. Of course NHL teams are for-profit ventures. That said, there’s a difference between allowing someone to do something and finding ways to help them do it.
It gets sticky in terms of PR (which owners may or may not actually care about) when you cry poverty and you aren’t poor, and then try to make your employees pay for your unsatisfactory profits. Whether the NHL thinks they will benefit from a more closely regulated expense system or not, they had time under the 2005 CBA to figure out what a cap system can and can’t do to save owners from each other.