Boeing union woes persist as it opens 787 facility in South Carolina

The economic competition between the North and the South continues, 144 years after the end of the Civil War. As The Seattle Times is reporting, Boeing (BA) is opening a second final assembly line in Charleston, South Carolina, for its 787 -- the 850-order, $150 billion-backlog passenger jet whose production schedule has been delayed six times in the last two years.

One reason for the delay was a 52-day strike last fall by Boeing's machinists union, largely based in Washington state. But South Carolina, which Bloomberg reports is a right-to-work state, meaning workers there can't be forced to join a union, offers Boeing some leverage against the union; it can threaten to shift more work there if the union in Washington doesn't play ball.