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Speaking of outrages

March 23, 2009

Re " 'Outrage' isn't the half of it," Opinion, March 18

Under the rule of law, an autoworker's union contract is no less worthy of protection from government meddling than an AIG executive's bonus. It is the height of hypocrisy to ask for renegotiations for one and not the other.

However, Tim Rutten misses the obvious error: the choice of bailout over bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is the orderly way our system deals with financially troubled enterprises. Bankruptcy courts would have forced a renegotiation of both union and bonus contracts.

In choosing government bailout and circumventing the bankruptcy process, these companies have left the door wide open to continued government interference in both manufacturing and the market.

William M. Cwirla

Hacienda Heights

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Rutten reaches the non sequitur conclusion that, in response to the AIG debacle, Congress should immediately pass the dishonestly named Employee Free Choice Act.

Rutten fails to note that this bill would eliminate the secret ballot for union elections. Pro-union employees would be able to pressure reluctant employees to sign union cards, and even retaliate against those who refused. Politics would further intrude into labor contracting because for the first time in history, the federal government would arbitrate labor contracts.

Two wrongs do not make a right.

Peter Rich

Los Angeles

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