Sunday, May 24, 2009
No, your eyes do not deceive you. Despite Las Vegas Sands and CEO Sheldon Adelson in particular being seen as Public Enemy No. 1 by the unions in Las Vegas, this was a full-page ad in the Express-Times in Bethlehem on Friday celebrating the opening of the casino there. (I had to scan in three parts and piece it together).
I asked LVS spokesman Ron Reese about this odd turn of events. He proudly reported that the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem is "100 percent union built."
He said they used "some" union labor for building the hotels in Las Vegas. But he had a grin on his face that told me I was not wrong to find this all quite ironic. It was only earlier this month that litigation between LVS and the Culinary 226 in Las Vegas over issues related to the opening of Venetian in 1999 were finally fully ended. The Venetian-Palazzo is the largest non-union shop on the Strip and the halls of the Culinary's downtown offices are adorned with photos of massive protests against Adelson. I want to say there's even photos of people holding pickets in which Adelson has the devil's horns on him.
Yet in the Keystone State, they're 100 percent union built and proud of it! (The service workers are not union, though.) Not only that, but the company spent $743 million to build a casino in a jurisdiction where they'll have to hand over 55 percent of the gaming revenue to the state!?!
What does Bethlehem and Harrisburg have that Vegas and Carson City don't? Anyone?