Los Angeles Dockworkers Oppose More Automation. Or Do They?

Los Angeles dockworkers are up in arms over increased automation that will soon come to the Port of Los Angeles in the form of driverless electric cargo trucks.

According to the Associated Press, a hearing Thursday held by the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners resulted in union members, local business owners and activists attending. The Board decided to postpone the decision to allow increasing automation and Las Angeles’s mayor, Eric Garcetti, has agreed to mediate the controversy.

The AP also advises that a terminal adjacent to the Port of Long Beach and in Los Angeles proper already use driverless vehicles known as utility tractor rigs. However, the outcry is the result of the facility operated for a Danish company to use the automation resulting from the port’s clean air regulations.

However, the Associated Press leaves out some key details. The Financial Times also reveals that it isn’t just the dock clean air rules Moller-Maersk and other dock management companies have to comply with but also California’s tenacious air regulations too.

Additionally, the FT points out the dockworkers union agreed to the automation when it consented to allow west coast terminal operators to utilize automation in order to compensate for negotiated increased wages and pension benefits. According to the Pacific Maritime Association, during 2017 the average longshoreman in California made $131,000.

However, despite Maersk’s APM Terminals division’s claim that automation could reduce diesel truck travel on its property by almost 70 percent, that hasn’t stopped the dockworkers union from trying to tie up permission from the City of Los Angeles and port authorities to implement automation in court.

This entire affair goes to show not only how environmental laws are being used to take away jobs but how the Left continues to eat their own. Even though the union agreed to the automation, now they are fighting it. However, the party who ultimately is in charge are environmentalists since they forced these rules that have resulted in this controversy to begin with.

In the end, the unions are no longer useful to the Left and they have now been thrown under the bus in favor of the new bosses, the environmentalists. Another example of the Left’s policies biting one of its core constituents in the ass or eating their own while longshoremen cling to dear life knowing the end is near and no one is batting an eye.