Wednesday, March 16, 2005
the lights go out in Mexico
Contract negotiations between the SME (electricians' union) and the national power company broke down last night, and the union is prepared to leave their jobs on strike today at noon. If they do so, they'll leave the power stations running on automatic. The union initially demanded a 15% raise in salaries, but would settle for 3.5%, but campany negotiatiors would not give in. According to the article in La Jornada, this would leave the following areas without power,
...el Distrito Federal y zona conurbada, el estado de México, Hidalgo, parte del estado de Puebla, Cuernavaca y Toluca
...ya que se pondrían las banderas rojinegras en todos las plantas generadoras, oficinas y centros de trabajo de Luz y Fuerza del Centro.
Los trabajadores ya tienen listo un operativo para cerrar todas las instalaciones a la hora marcada, dejando los interruptores operando en automático, y aunque no los bajarían para quitar el servicio, sí se retirarían de los centros de trabajo sin hacerse responsables de si fallan los sistemas de generación eléctrica o el abastecimiento. A partir de las 12 horas, si no hay arreglo, los 38 mil electricistas pararán.
This may be the last post for a while if the strike occurs, but I'm guessing there will be some resolution. It will be interesting to see what effect a strike, if it occurs, would have on the political process aimed at privatizing the electricity sector.
In Congress yesterday, PRD and PAN members chimed in on the dabate about universal pensions for the elderly. Both sides came out to defend their leaders, Fox and AMLO. You can read about the details in this article.
And finally, according to one of several academics who have written about the PAN, the new President of the PAN signals that the First Lady will be in a good position to become the party's candidate in 2006. (I say "one of several" because my good buddy Steve Wuhs has also written about the PAN, and when his book is published, it will be more up-to-date than the one mentioned in the article.)
posted by Michelle @ 10:20 AM,