London's tube drivers are on strike (again), holding the entire city to ransom (again). The answer seems obvious to me:
1) Fire them all
2) Offer to re-hire on near identical terms, minus any union affiliation
3) High profile training scheme to make up the shortfall
Actually there wouldn't be much of a shortfall. Very few tube drivers could afford not to accept the offer to re-hire, not in this economy. And there'd be no shortage of people willing to accept the offer of training and work. In fact it's precisely because of the state of the economy that makes the timing of this scheme perfect.
As a Londoner, I'd be happy to put up with a few months with the service at 80-90%, if it means we get no more strikes in the long term.
I imagine there'd be financial repercussions for firing people en masse. Maybe problems with pension schemes, etc. But it would actually be a very small group you'd have to worry about (those who didn't re-hire). And there are no shortage of articles shouting about how much money the city loses each time there's a strike.
And this could revitalise Gordon Brown's career. Could give Boris Johnson a lot of support. I don't support either politician, I'm just saying there is political capital to be gained. The tube drivers have little or no support outside their union.
So, what am I missing?