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ICYMI: Leadership Abyss
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Two days ago, the United Auto Workers went on strike at three major auto plants. The union has about 150,000 members under contract. The result? Wall-to-wall news coverage and a sense of fierce urgency among both Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and President Joe Biden, who has called himself “the most pro-union president in history.”
His remarks from the White House on Friday:
I’d like to say a few words about the contract negotiations between the United Auto Workers and the Big 3 auto companies.
You know, I’ve been in touch with both parties over — since this began over the last few weeks….
Unions raise workers’ wages, they said — incomes — increase homeownership; increase retirement savings; increase access to critical benefits, like sick leave and childcare; and reduce inequality — all of which strengthen our economy for all workers…
I do appreciate that the parties have been working around the clock. I’ve — and when I first called them at the very first day of the negotiation, I said, “Please stay at the table as long as you can to try to work this out”…
But I believe they should go further to ensure record corporate profits mean record contracts for the UAW.
The auto industry accounts for 3 percent of America’s GDP. Hollywood accounts for 3.2 percent. But outside of platitudes, no politicians — local or national — seem to be coming to help get this industry, nearing its fifth month of a shutdown, back to work (an industry that supports 2.4 million jobs and pays out $186 billion in total wages, according to the Motion Picture Association). Just this morning, the White House announced it was sending a team to Detroit this week to help resolve the strike. But here... crickets continue.
It’s reflective of the leadership gap — both politically and endemically — that informed many of our stories and podcasts this week.
First up: Peter Kiefer’s story about how, in an information void, a strange tale of a would-be meeting between showrunners Kenya Barris, Noah Hawley and WGA leadership was able to spiral — while revealing the hidden hand of the big agencies as tensions simmer between their clients and them:
Meanwhile, Richard dove into the leadership paralysis keeping workers suffering, quoting Bob Iger from his own book, Ride of a Lifetime:
Decisiveness. All decisions, no matter how difficult, can be made on a timely basis. Indecisiveness is both wasteful and destructive to morale.
Elaine Low broke the news Friday night of Apple joining the deal suspensions spreading throughout town:
A year ago, our big five-part series about the American Viewer from Entertainment Strategy Guy was a huge hit. This week, he revisted new data, essential to everyone in this town as development (hopefully) gets up and running soon:
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Sean McNulty’s interview with CNBC’s Alex Sherman about his epic story of Bob Iger and Bob Chapek’s succession story-gone-wrong revealed something that didn’t make it into his story — that one of the possible reasons Iger stepped down in 2019 was due to scrutiny around his compensation:
Listen here: Apple | Spotify | Google Podcasts
IP Picks🔎: Would You Option the New Musk Bio? Rights, it turns out, are available for the Walter Isaacson-authored tome. Plus, an alien in rural America, a Mare of Easttown-style mystery and a feel-good story about an autistic underdog athlete