5,000 people who have been employed running public transit in Philadelphia have decided that they no longer want to work at the levels of compensation that are being offered to them.
As of last February, it was estimated that there were 75,000 people looking for work in Philadelphia. That's the most recent number I found, and I doubt that it has gotten any better in the meantime.
Politicians such as Mayor Michael Nutter and Governor Ed Rendell are derelict in their duties, in that they have not started hiring from among that pool of idle workers, to replace those who are no longer doing those jobs.
Of course, I have the highest respect for the integrity of those leaders, so I wouldn't think of suggesting that they are corruptly derelict, as a result of their having accepted money from the unions.
When faced with a similar situation in 1981, then-President Ronald Reagan fired striking public employees.
The private sector has a way of dealing with unions' tendency to price themselves out of a labor market. The operations in question move to other places, where they can hire workers at market wage levels. That's why there is a rust belt.
The only way of dealing with this situation in relation to public sector unions is for political leaders to lead, as Reagan did.