LABOR: Embarrassing Picket

As he strode into the united labor movement's sleek, modern headquarters in Washington last week, burly A.F.L.-C.I.O. President George Meany blushed for all to see. Plodding back and forth on the sidewalk was a pudgy picket carrying a sandwich board that proclaimed: 21 YEARS AN A.F.L.-C.I.O. ORGANIZER THEN FIRED BY A 3^ STAMP. Admitted an A.F.L.-C.I.O. official: "It's damned embarrassing."

The embarrassing picket was James Sweeny, 59, a onetime coal miner and longtime professional organizer who was booted out of his $6,500-a-year job a few weeks ago and into retirement with a $96-a-month pension. At the same time, the A.F.L.-C.I.O....

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