The Association of Flight Attendants-Communications
of America (afa-CWA) should be congratulated.
Through the application of money combined with an effective search and
cultivation of the right kind of people to sign on as activists, the
able to persuade enough flight attendants to send in authorization cards
to petition the National Mediation Board (NMB) for another election.
Even though the afa-CWA lost by a large
margin, in the last election, it is at it again. The afa-CWA is still trying to
recruit new activists to get votes for this election.
How were they able to accomplish this before? How are they trying
now? Face it, the rank and file Delta flight attendant does not
support a union. We showed that in the last election. We
continue to show it now.
However, the afa-CWA's continuing strategy is to try to change
our perception of Delta. Among some of its activist followers, the afa-CWA already
has been successful with this change. Among this subgroup of activists, the afa-CWA
successfully created a subculture of mistrust and it wants this mistrust
spread. When a flight attendant disagrees with the afa-CWA line, these
followers question the motivation or engage in character assassination.
Even though the afa-CWA was not successful in changing the culture at Delta to
a union hospitable culture for the last election, the afa-CWA is still
If you receive
the JoinTogether listserv, you get a sense of the weapon
that the afa-CWA has chosen to try to change our perception.
What is this weapon?
If the afa-CWA can cause us to misinterpret managementís actions, we will
begin to mistrust management. By making us think that Delta intends
to harm us, the afa-CWA stands a better chance of winning any new election. The
afa-CWA has successfully used this weapon to twist its activists. Now, the
afa-CWA has turned these activists loose on the rest of us.
Alan A. Cavaiola, Ph.D, and Neil J. Lavender, Ph.D. wrote a
book entitled Toxic Coworkers: How to Deal with Dysfunctional People on
the Job. There is a discussion of paranoia and Paranoid
Personality Disorder in the book. Although this book deals with
individuals, we can see this theme in the afa-CWA communications. Look at the
articles published by the afa-CWA. Look at the e-mail written by the
activists on the JoinTogether listserv. Talk to activists in the
lounges or on layovers. What is the common thread? Paranoia.
The following excerpt is from Toxic Coworkers:
"Those with Paranoid Personality Disorder (PPD)
usually operate within the bounds of reality, except for those areas where
they misinterpret the actions and intentions of others. While this
"misinterpretation" does have a delusional quality, it is not to
the extent of the Paranoid Schizophrenic, whose delusions of persecution
or grandiosity will take on bizarre qualities. . . . The DSM-IV symptoms
of PPD include:
A pervasive distrust and suspiciousness of
others, such that their motives are interpreted as malevolent,
beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as
indicated by at least four of the following:
- Suspects, without sufficient basis,
that others are exploiting harming or deceiving him or her.
- is preoccupied with unjustified doubts
about the loyalty or trustworthiness of friends or associates.
- is reluctant to confide in others
because of unwarranted fear that the information will be used
maliciously against him or her.
- Reads hidden meaning or threatening
meanings into benign remarks or events e.g. suspects that a
neighbor put out the trash early to annoy him.
- persistently bears grudges , i.e. is
unforgiving of insults, injuries or slights.
- perceives attacks on his or her
character or reputation that are not apparent to others and is
quick to react angrily or counterattack.
- Has recurrent suspicions, without
justification , regarding the fidelity of a spouse or partner.
Analyze the next JoinTogether Digest or any other afa-CWA
communication against this list.
Why do the Activists really mistrust Delta? Is this mistrust
founded in fact, or is it simply paranoia?
You be the judge.
Toxic Coworkers How to Deal with Dysfunctional People on the Job,
Alan A. Cavaiola, Ph.D, and Neil J. Lavender, Ph.D., (2000)
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth
Edition. Copyright 1994 American Psychiatric Association.
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