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Originally published Sunday, April 20, 2014 at 5:30 AM

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737s — and corporate duplicity — keep rolling at Boeing

The Wrap by Ron Judd


Seattle Times staff columnist

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Mr. Wrap is all verklempt. A touching moment, it was, when Boeing, formerly of Seattle, rolled out 737 number 8,000 the other day.

The plane, painted in the snappy livery of United Airlines, bears a unique logo — an “8000” decal near the forward door.

Congrats are due to the fighting machinists and other workers in Renton, who roll those planes out at an astonishing pace.

Meanwhile: Buoyed by the press reception, Boeing plans to roll out its first 777X mock-up with a similar commemorative logo — a large, gleaming Phillips-head screw, symbolizing its ongoing treatment of dedicated Puget Sound-area employees and other taxpayers.

More Hallmark-card employee-relations moments:

Just Thinking Ahead: An Earthlike planet “only” 500 light years away has been identified by astronomers. In keeping with aerospace tradition, Boeing has launched a probe to post new, lower-paying engineering jobs there.

The Hits Keep On Coming: According to company memos revealed by The Times’ Dominic Gates, the Lazy B’s callous transfers of engineering jobs to out-of-state locales has sown widespread internal “dissent, distrust and confusion.” It’s tough news for employees and fans of old Boeing, but a boon to upper-level corporate schmucks eligible for the company’s innovative new Dissent, Distrust and Confusion Executive Bonus Pool.

Seriously, People: We know there’s plenty of circling angst about corporate-welfare queen Boeing pulling the rug out from under dedicated, critical employees. But it’s high time those people got with the times and asked themselves the important questions. Like: What’s really more important? Putting your kids through college, or making possible a 12th vacation home for CEO Jim “Light Bulb” McNerney?

Even More Seriously: Nobody ever said the Job Creators have an obligation to create jobs in your backyard. Sometimes you have to put up your sail and move to where the dirty money flows more freely.

We Kid McNerney: But in hindsight, he and his golden-parachute golf buddies probably did the right thing moving the company HQ to Chicago. By the way: Any chance you guys could move it somewhere even farther? That rotting smell is still palpable.

Speaking of Modern Business Ethics: Steven Powell, convicted sex offender and father of deceased child-killing degenerate Josh Powell, wants taxpayers to fund his sex-offender treatment. Don’t we have an extradition treaty with Utah?

Come to Think of it: Powell might be the perfect candidate to ship off to those sex-crime-obsessed prosecutors in Perugia, Italy, as a stand-in hostage for Amanda Knox. Call it a win-win.

Meanwhile, on Planet Maple Leaf: We were a little surprised to see that the flight-simulator pilot who’s been making a living as part of CNN’s missing-plane fixation get canned by his Canadian employer for, among other things, “shaming” Canadians by “dressing like a teenager” on TV. Since when does Canada have a dress code?

Seriously: Have any of these corporate people ever been to Alberta?

And Finally: A pro tip here for the local coppers. If you (understandably) want to help your wife pursue a career in prostitution, and see fit (as any loving husband would) to use the county computer system to screen her johns, make really sure you’ve wiped away all your digital fingerprints.

Ron Judd’s column appears each Sunday. Reach him at rjudd@seattletimes.com or 206-464-8280



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