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Now that SAG/AMPTP mediation has broken off, the AMPTP is ramping things up. Articles in the trades are talking about how all the work will go to AFTRA if SAG is on strike. Really! Someone needs to read the constitutions of SAG /AFTRA/ AFL-CIO and the 4A’s.

Below is an email from Laura Walsh at Central Artist Management.

Although, Ms. Walsh purports to be neutral, wink, wink, with her talk about another devastating strike during in the middle of the busiest casting time in 2009, her intent is obvious.

What? But, but, she ain’t trying to persuade her clients one way or another, right? *

Ms. Walsh is being a little more subtle than another small agent who flat out told her clients to vote against the strike authorization.

I really wonder how these reps will feel when instead of that residual check based on $759 dollars for a network rerun, they get one based on $22:50 for a year of streaming on the Internet. Or NO residual at all if they only stream the show for 17 days.

Now, I ain’t no math whiz but don’t ten percent of $22.50 come to something like $2.25 cents commission for an agent.

Here is a copy of the email from Ms. Walsh:

You guys have a look at this, and please think wisely when the cards are sent to you.

Laura Walsh
Central Artists
3310 W. Burbank Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91505
Ph: 818-557-8284
F: 818-557-8348
centralartists.com

SAG & Another Strike – Please read and forward

This was sent to me – worth a read. A few months ago SAG send out postcards asking whether you guys wanted to settle or dig your heels in on the remaining points and gamble on another devastating strike. 120,000members received these cards.

I was outraged to discover that barely 10,000 of you actually bothered to respond. A majority of those who found the time to respond authorizedthe union to play hardball and dig in.

This past weekend talks broke down… again. Once again you will be asked whether you want to authorize another strike which (if it happens) will be right in the middle of the busiest casting time in 2009.

When you get your card this time please VOTE!!! Whether you know it or not you have been in a de facto strike for months. Producers simply are not making SAG films or TV shows. On Friday the breakdowns had only 1 pilot, 9 episodic and 4 film roles.

The last two strikes put hundreds of thousands of people OUT of work. Not just writers and actors.

Despite my tone I’m not trying to get you to vote one way or the other.I just want you to participate in a process that is affecting hundreds of thousands of folks in this business.

WOOF !Ah, right! B)

If only 10,000 SAG members are involved it means that your (our) collective fate is being is being determined by LESS than 10% of your membership.

Don’t be a pawn! This is YOUR business. Educate yourself. Tell your union what you think. Don’t wait to get your mailings. Go to their website and write them NOW.

Read what both sides have to say. NEWS:http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/update-amptp-trash-talks-sag-strike/ SAG:http://www.sag.org/press-releases/november-22-2008/sag-amptp-mediation-fails THE PRODUCERS: http://www.amptp.org/

But the anti Strike Authorization don’t stop there. There’s a “NO STRIKE” petition on the Internet.

Although, it is identified as a No Strike petition aimed at both SAG and the AMPTP, in truth, it is what amounts to a NO Strike Authorization petition aimed at SAG’s upcoming referendum; if indeed members voted NO that would mean SAG would basically be at the AMPTP’s mercy, leaving members in a take it or leave it situation.

Why is it these, folks, never seem to put any pressure or blame on employers? In this case the AMPTP. Heres what the anonymous creator of the petition states:

We are asking SAG to not seek a strike for the good of the industry, the audience, and the country as a whole. We are asking them not to spend the next two months seeking authorization for a strike, but rather spend the next two weeks reaching an agreement.

I’m Nick Counter and I approve this message.

Oh, wait, they do throw in the obligatory, wink, wink

In fairness, we are asking the AMPTP to offer a deal that is EQUAL to that offered to other unions, and nothing less. We are asking that SAG then take it and fight another day at another time when next your contract expires.

I’m Nick Counter and I approve this message too.

Have you noticed how with a lot of these people it is always tomorrow? And please? I mean what nonsense! Huh? We are going to take a deal equal to IATSE. Hello? Get a grip, please! Would someone point out to me where any of the other guilds signed to give away Force Majeure or a deal where consent of clips was spelled out as a condition of employment. And you got to love the comments by non-actors telling actors not to be selfish.

Non-actor: Don’t be so selfish! Give up the core principle of your union and let signatories do non-union work, give up force Majeure, give up consent of clips, allow yourself to be used in product endorsements with no pay and all that other stuff they want you to accept.

Actor: Why should I do that?

Non-actor: So I can keep working!

As to the petition, it ain’t all that scientific since anyone can go on and sign it, more than once, but, but it must be reassuring to Nick and the gang at the AMPTP.

As far as anyone signing a petition declaring they don’t want a strike; who the hell does want one? It’s like wanting world peace, an end to hunger, or the Cubs winning the pennant.

The problem is this; there is no teeth in going on the Internet with hat in hand telling both sides you don’t want a strike.

How about this if you want to get not only SAG’s attention, but the AMPTP’s attention; how about actors and others affected by a strike starting a boycott of movies and network TV shows to make a deal? You think they then might get back to the table? * again!

My favorite line from one of the signers is from someone named Timothy Bottoms. Now I don’t know if it’s THE Timothy Bottoms, but here is what this Timothy Bottoms says.

: i became an actor because it was fun. i will act for free if i have to.

With that attitude Tim there’s a good chance you will be doing just that!

A.L. Miller SW Editor & Chief WOOF !

If you have a similar email from an agent or manager inserting their noses in SAG’s business please forward it to me, and I will post it. Your identity will not be revealed.

By the way, SAG President Alan Rosenberg seems to be making the talk show circuit. Good! He is a very affective spokesperson for our guild. Here is the interview on KFI with a couple of very irritating talk show hosts, one a “know nothing” parroting AFTRA/AMPTP First propaganda, and another obviously anti-union. But, but even with their constant interruptions, Mr. Rosenberg makes a very good case for our union and its responsibility to get the best deal possible iits members.

To hear the interview click the following link (Give it around 20 seconds to load.)
http://tinyurl.com/5hzp4m

I particularly love his response to the tough economic ruse that the AMPTP is using as an excuse for SAG members to take a lousy contract. Our Prez pointed out the Screen Actors Guild was formed during THE GREAT DEPRESSION!

With the threat of a strike, the next day by ACTORS, producers capitulated and our union was recognized.

Huh, on the other hand, they did have our NO Strike gang to contend with. No only would we have NO union, but we’d have NO Residuals and NO Pension and Health if our SAG predecessors had been of their wait till next time ilk.

As to the economic ruse being propagandized by our employers; you’ll notice they never say that they are having an economic crisis, only that the country is.

I mean when you are consistently having increased box-office revenue over last year—to the point that the President of the box office tracking firm ” Media For Numbers” comments about the box office increases in the LA Times with:

“This is another example of how the economy has not slowed people at all from going to watch movies, ” He said. “We’re set up to have one of the biggest Thanksgiving Weekends ever!”

—it is a little hard for employers to keep a straight face and talk about their economic crisis in either movies–or television. (Where today’s (11/25/08) LA Times headlines that “Households’ TV viewing at a record !!)

*gobble Have a Happy Thanksgiving; our employers will!