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Boeing And The National Labor Relations Board45:01
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The epic battle over Boeing moving manufacturing of the 787 Dreamliner from Washington State to South Carolina.

The Boeing Co. 737 assembly facility is shown in Renton, Wash., Boeing asked a Seattle judge to dismiss a case brought by the National Labor Relations Board that accuses the plane maker of breaking the law when it built a non-union production line in South Carolina. (AP)
The Boeing Co. 737 assembly facility is shown in Renton, Wash., Boeing asked a Seattle judge to dismiss a case brought by the National Labor Relations Board that accuses the plane maker of breaking the law when it built a non-union production line in South Carolina. (AP)

When mighty Boeing set out to build its new 787 Dreamliner aircraft, it laid out big manufacturing plans for South Carolina, a right-to-work state where unions are not strong.

Boeing put up a billion-dollar factory in Charleston, and South Carolina celebrated. This summer, the National Labor Relations Board said the huge new plant is illegal, built to punish union workers in Washington State –- and asked a judge to order Boeing production back to Puget Sound.

Now, an epic battle is raging over law, ideology, rights, and raw power.

This hour On Point: the raging battle over Boeing.
-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Steven Greenhouse, labor and workplace correspondent for the New York Times.

Douglas Woodward, professor of economics at the University of South Carolina business school.

Harley Shaiken, professor at the University of California, Berkeley who specializes in labor issues.

Richard Epstein, professor of law at New York University, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, and senior lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School.

From Tom's Reading List

Slate "There's a fine line between congressional oversight and congressional overreach, but I think it's safe to say that Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, has well and truly crossed it. His crusade against the National Labor Relations Board—a crusade that puts basic tenets of due process, judicial independence, and workers' rights at risk—makes sense only if you are a subscriber to the nihilist worldview that virtually all government agencies are corrupt, socialist minions of Obama."

The New York Times "Boeing’s gigantic new $750 million airplane factory here is the pride of South Carolina, the biggest single investment ever made in a state that is far more associated with old-line textile mills than state-of-the-art manufacturing. In just a few weeks, 1,000 workers will begin assembling the first of what they hope will be hundreds of 787 Dreamliners. "

This program aired on August 18, 2011.

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