During the ATA/NATR referendum Mr. T.J. Escott, EMPLOYER and ATA/NATR agent, not only placed fliers in the lobby of his NY & LA offices “advising” his clients to vote IN FAVOR of the ATA/NATR referendum–he also sent out LETTERS “encouraging” his clients to vote for it!
Now, if SAG leadership is sincere in their desire to go after all EMPLOYERS who have “INFLUENCED” referenda, why haven’t they filed suit against Mr. Escott? Ah, could the reason be that during that referendumthey BOTH HAD THE SAME AGENDA?
In fact, rather than SAG’s litigation-challenged attorneys just focusing on Mr.Vulich, a singular make-up artist who simply FORWARDED a few political e-mails, why not file suit against T.J. Escott who didn’t just forward letters but he WROTE them, and then “SHARED” them with his clients!
Oh, and let’s not limit the lawsuits to Mr. Escott but rather extend them to all AGENT EMPLOYERS who were “…pitching thesps on deal!”
And don’t try and make the argument that Mr. Escott isn’t OUR EMPLOYER! Well, HELLO? Neither is make-up artist Vulich! Both, however, are EMPLOYERS under SAG’s convoluted way of thinking! The only difference is that while Mr. Vulich has a limited staff of technicians that have NO INFLUENCE OVER ACTORS, Mr. Escott has a large staff of POWERFUL AGENTS that have a lot of INFLUENCE OVER THEIR CLIENTS. And one other thing we know, is that unlike Mr. Escott, Mr. Vulich had nothing to gain when he forwarded his e-mails for a friend!
Ah, its not like the SAG Leadership didn’t know what was going on! And it’s not like they don’t have plenty of witnesses to the violation! Actually, It’s more than likely that the Restore Respect dominated NEC is using our dues money, and the court system, to fulfill their own personal political vendetta!
Hey, wouldn’t EMPLOYER T.J. Escott’s statement to his CED clients WARNING them “that Without an agreement we are in a nether world that could lead to disruption and chaos in our industry!” qualify as what SAG General Counsel David White described as missives that are an “Illegal and harassing means to influence a union vote” that undermines “the fundamental right of our members to self-determination!”
Mr. White said that Mr. Vulich, the make-up artist, had “no business interfering with the rights of working actors to make the critical decisions of their union!” Wouldn’t this go doubly for T.J. Escott and all the other POWERFUL agents, who didn’t just forward a couple of e-mails that were already all over the Internet, but rather used the EMPLOYER-POWERS INHERENT IN THEIR POSITIONS to persuade their clients to VOTE THEIR WAY
Mr. White has said SAG will show “ZERO TOLERANCE!” Well, the Ol’ Watchdog suggests that SAG shows unbiased ZERO tolerance in their litigations –or you can bet that there will be lots of ZEROS attached to those dollar signs, in the settlements of counter lawsuits against our guild handed out by judges with ZERO tolerance for vendettas disguised as lawsuits!
A.L. Miller SW Editor & chief