Well, it’s election time again. And time for Abner Furbish Jr. to gear up the The Watchdog’s Amazing DeBUNKalator for a go at Restore Respecter Stephen Collins Campaign email!
Mr. Collins campaign e-mail came today! We of course, called noted DeBUNKalator expert Abner Furbish Jr! After, reading Mr. Collins email Mr. Furbish smiled, shook his head in mild disbelief, and set the Amazing DeBUNKalator on its Generalization/Puffery/Eliminator setting!
We begin Mr. Collins’ email following the disclaimer. The Ol’ Watchdog will read the Amazing DeBUNKalator’s responses. They are highlighted.
An Open Letter From Stephen Collins
Mr. Collins: First, thanks for taking the time to look at this. I know you must be inundated with campaign materials and daily email messages that compete for your attention.
Email begins with an obligatory, self serving statement which attempts to bond with reader through the use of calculated empathy.
Mr. Collins: I do believe however, that this SAG Hollywood Board election is one of the most important in our union’s history. Questions of who you want as your negotiators in the upcoming TV/Theatrical negotiations-
Mr. Collins email asks generalized questions without providing answers! However they are good questions so the Amazing DeBUNKalator will make them more specific, and let you provide the answers. Who do you want as your negotiators in the upcoming TV/Theatrical negotiations? Restore Respecters’ Negotiator, SAG CEO Bob Pisano. CEO Bob, who sits on the board of Netflix, a DVD/Video company that has a revenue sharing deal with Major Movie Studios that SAG will be dealing with in the upcoming TV/Theatrical negotiations. CEO Bob, who advised the board NOT to go after an INCREASE in DVD’s, while at the same time pocketing TWO MILLION-FOUR HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS –on JUST SOME of his Netflix Stock. CEO Bob, who is currently being sued for CONFLICT OF INTEREST because of his EMPLOYER ties. Or, perhaps, someone who is not quite so CONFLICTED!
Mr. Collins: stopping run-away production – dealing with a nationwide health crisis – fighting for DVD residuals – preparing for the impact of new technologies on our careers and pocketbooks – these issues are all on the table in this election. I’m convinced the Restore Respect team has the right approach for seriously grappling with these concerns.
: Mr. Collins and Restore Respecter’s only solution to Runaway Production is to put INCENTIVE MONEY into the pockets of Producers like Restore Repects, Melissa Gilbert, Mike Farrell and Jamie Cromwell, while at the same time refusing to support FTAC’s efforts to have congress investigate the legality of Canada’s subsidies. Subsidies, that are at the heart of Runaway Production. As to fighting for DVD residuals: Restore Respects One Year TV/Theatrical Extension Contract, the worst TV/Theatrical Contract in SAG history, achieved NO INCREASE in the formula for ANY RESIDUAL STRUCTURE including DVD’s! When it comes to fighting, the facts prove out that Restore Respecters are basically Pacifist.
Mr. Collins: I was once a supporter of Membership First. Like many of you perhaps, for much of my career I didn’t take an active interest in the Guild. I read the materials that were sent to me by those who are now the core of Membership First – most of which attacked the leadership of SAG – and nodded my head in agreement. Then I decided to get active and involved after what I felt was a disastrous six-month commercials strike.
A disastrous six month that saved Class “A” A disastrous six month strike that got us a ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY PERCENT INCREASE IN CABLE. Just think of the state of OUR P&H, if not for that 140% bump in Cable Residuals resulting from that disastrous strike. We’d STILL be getting around $1200 hundred dollars a cycle–instead of the current rate of nearly $2600! Commercials generate 700 MILLION dollars a year. Cut those Cable residuals, that we’re now getting, in half-and our P&H, and members pocketbooks, would really be hurting. What the go-along-get-alongers like Mr. Collins and his Restore Respect pacifist don’t understand is that when members don’t stand up for themselves, they may very will be avoiding a disaster while encouraging a Catastrophe!! Oh, and Mr. Collins failed to mention that the disastrous six month strike put a MILLION DOLLARS into a fund which is at the heart of the New Monitoring proposalthat he and his RR pacifist pals are now taking credit for!
Mr. Collins: I started taking a closer look at what I was being told and sent by Membership First. I started to realize that their rhetoric and approach turned a very complex industry and union into a simple battle of good vs. evil. When I became a member of the SAG negotiating team for the contract extension, I realized even more how simple approaches to complex issues might sway members who don’t see this process up close. I saw how that approach does a disservice to all of us.
In short, I got a good education about how hard our staff works and how our leadership is doing the best it can for our members on a day-to-day basis.
Since, Mr. Collins’ ramblings contain NO SPECIFICS, but only vague generalities and personal, unsubstantiated evaluations, the Ol’ Watchdog cannot respond! Perhaps if he hadn’t been so SIMPLISTIC!
Mr. Collins: So here we are in another campaign. And the same rhetoric I once agreed with is coming at us again. We know the drill. “There have been ‘secret meetings’ and ‘hidden agendas’ designed to keep the membership in the dark”. “The producers make billions and we get nothing.” “SAG didn’t fight for DVD residuals.” “Vote for us and we will bring back the ‘glory days’ of the union.”
“Know the drill?” Restore Respect and the high priced PR firms, like the one they brought in for Consolidation–invented it! And, yes, the membership would be kept in the dark if it weren’t for those who are trying to shed some light on what, under Restore Respects Leadership, has become the SECRET ACTORS GUILD! If Mr. Collins and the Restore Respect Leadership had their way, members would NOT know the particulars of the Hasbro Giveaway. They wouldn’t know about the financial inconsistencies in the accountability the Missing Members Residual fund! They wouldn’t know about Restore Respects Qualified Voting, two-tiered plan! They wouldn’t know about the Mercer Report which stated that combining the SAG PH fund with AFTRA would NOT BE BENIFICAL to SAG participants. They wouldn’t know about the Secret “Made-In/played in plan that would allow SOME SAG members to do Non-Union work abroad and pay money into SAG’s PH fund using a pass through company. They wouldn’t have knownah, okay, you get the idea.
Mr. Collins: My sincere belief after being at the bargaining table – after going toe to toe with producers – after working with the leadership and staff of this union up close – is that Membership First is still selling snake oil. I once bought it. I simply can’t anymore.
The Ol’ Watchdog and the Amazing DeBUNKalator is not sure where Mr. Collins got his Snake Oil–but he is obvious slithering in it.
Mr. Collins: There are no easy solutions to our problems and challenges. The producers will not simply give us what we want if we yell loud enough. Threatening strikes and militancy are not magic bullets. Look what happened with the grocery workers strike earlier this year. I could probably get votes for myself and the Restore Respect slate by telling you the world is simpler than it is. But telling the truth is important to me and to the rest of the people I’m running with. We need strategic and creative people to face the difficulties ahead.
: Translation: “Go-along-to-get-along!” Of, course; producers will not give us what we want if we yell loud enough! But, then again they won’t give us what we want if we politely “go-along-to-get-along”– while campaigning, as Restore Respect did, on the platform THAT STRIKES ARE NOT NECESSARY! Lew Wasserman, MCA icon, proclaimed that a Compliant Union was a good union. Boy, Ol’ Lew would have Loved Collins and his Restore Respect pals.
Mr. Collins: I can tell you this: We need a united union. A future American President once said, in 1858, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” That statement is just as true today when applied to our union.
We agree, Stephen, so let’s all unite behind Membership First! Instead of Restore Respects INACTION, which has resulted in a THREE-YEAR impasse on franchising ATA/NATR agents, They’ll take DECISIVE ACTION to franchise these agents. And unlike Restore Respects leadership, they will not advise members TO GET A LAWYER when an unscrupulous agent tries to foist an Odious GSA upon them. They will unite to assure that our beloved Screen Actors Guild will NEVER give up its autonomy to some hairbrained WORLD UNION. They will unite us to get the BEST CONTRACT in Union History–Not the WORST ONE!
Mr Collins: I urge you to vote for the Restore Respect slate. We’re not miracle workers. We are a diverse group of hard working professionals like you and we have the integrity and commitment to make our union work again. Our collective future is at stake.
And unfortunately, their self-serving actions indicate that when THEY say “OUR collective future is at stake.” THEY mean it!
Mr. Collins: Please vote for all 34 candidates listed below and visit our website for detailed information on the issues: www.restorerespect.com. We all thank you for your consideration and support.
Read ALL the Restore Respect candidates names on Mr. Collins email, and when it comes time to vote, remember that ALL OF THEM support Restore Respects actions, or inactions, that the Amazing DeBUNKalator has pointed outAND THEN VOTE ACCORDINGLY.
Fred J. Fein
35. Mitchell Ryan
Chris M. Allport
Vivicca A. Whitsett
Oil of these candidates have bought into the same SNAKEOIL as Mr. Collins, and Oil have drank the Restore Respect Coil Aid!
A.L. Miller SW’s Editor & Chief
*All formatting is SW’s!