The unions have been hung by their own petards..............

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Message 839134 - Posted: 12 Dec 2008, 4:23:04 UTC

I see from BBC - US car bail-out talks 'collapse' that Mark's word's are probably true.
Quote:
Negotiations in the US Senate to try to secure Republican backing for the $14bn (£9.4bn) car industry bail-out have collapsed, senior Democrats have said.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said representatives of the United Auto Workers union had refused to accede to Republican demands for swift wage cuts.
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Message 839153 - Posted: 12 Dec 2008, 6:39:12 UTC - in response to Message 839134.  

I see from BBC - US car bail-out talks 'collapse' that Mark's word's are probably true.
Quote:
Negotiations in the US Senate to try to secure Republican backing for the $14bn (£9.4bn) car industry bail-out have collapsed, senior Democrats have said.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said representatives of the United Auto Workers union had refused to accede to Republican demands for swift wage cuts.

Again....the pride of the UAW goes before it's fall........
The last final act of defiance....and ignorance.

They can't see the forest for the trees....

All or nothing boys eh?

I say you get nothing..........

Pack it up and walk....go ahead....make my day.
"Freedom is just Chaos, with better lighting." Alan Dean Foster

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Message 839173 - Posted: 12 Dec 2008, 7:58:30 UTC - in response to Message 839153.  

Union bosses have to go.
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Message 839245 - Posted: 12 Dec 2008, 15:16:57 UTC - in response to Message 839218.  
Last modified: 12 Dec 2008, 15:17:51 UTC

"Letter to the Editor" from Elkins Fordland.


I would like to point out that this letter was written by a Ford dealer in Pittsburgh. It is a well written article, but perhaps a little biased. I can certainly understand why politicians from states without american auto plants would have reservations commiting money to a poorly run business in another region in the country. Despite the fact that the downfall of aerican auto manufacturing would have national implications. Perhaps people are tired of hearing the word "bailout" ?

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Message 839326 - Posted: 12 Dec 2008, 20:36:50 UTC - in response to Message 839245.  

Biased? Thats putting it mildly! I have never owned a car made by Ford, Chrysler or GM, or their subsidiaries - perhaps this is why I've only ever had one car, not get to my intended destination, in over 30 years! That 'letter' has got more holes in it, than certain cheeses.

Sales. Well, in Europe, GM includes more companies than Toyota, like, Opel, Vauxhall and, I believe, Saab.....3000 units more than Toyota? Thats quite an achievement - how many of those vehicles were not repaired in the first 6 months? The Ford Fusion is a European design - I was involved with component manufacturing for Zetec engines. Wow, 33 mpg, from a Malibu (whatever that is).....my 225 bhp, 1988 Honda Legend 2.7 returns 37 mpg cruising around at, um, err, more than 70 mph on the Motor-way! The reason that Toyota are also making 'pick-ups' is because, one, they are trying to make in-roads into that market, and, two, they are probably already naking them for the Australian market. In Austalia, everyone who has a 'sheep station', has a Toyota Land Cruiser or the like - if a vehicle breaks down, in the Outback, you're dead! If Ford have invested so much in 'Hybrids', why was the Honda FCX Clarity, called 'the most significant car since the Model T', by the respected UK Auto journalist, Quentin Wilson?



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Message 839428 - Posted: 13 Dec 2008, 2:06:40 UTC

Whatever.........
My point is....and shall remain...
The UAW has reaped benefits far beyond most of the American workforce simply because in years past, when they had no competition, they flexed their muscle forever demanding more benefits and wages......and, due to the market metrics that existed at the time, the big 3 caved in....

Their demands were supportable at that time because there was little competition to reign them in. And so management capitulated to survive........

And the rest of the car buying public payed for it....and still does...and if the bailout succeeds, we will be paying for it for many more years.......
"Freedom is just Chaos, with better lighting." Alan Dean Foster

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Message 839592 - Posted: 13 Dec 2008, 15:38:47 UTC - in response to Message 837989.  
Last modified: 13 Dec 2008, 16:22:44 UTC

The unions are not part of the solution, they are part of the problem. Unionizing more industry in the US would lead to more outsourcing and even greater job losses. Furthermore, union shops have very little production flexibility, as evident in Detroit. Honda of America on the other hand has the flexibility of shifting production to meet customers' demands.


I really can't understand how anyone could possibly blame unions for the outsourcing of jobs to third world slave states.

This really isn't that hard. In fact, it's very very simple, and has been stated here a number of times, to wit, "...what the unions have mostly done is drive their costs through the roof and priced themselves out of the labor market."

That's why unions get blamed: they priced themselves significantly higher than the rest of the labor market.

According to the NYT on December 3rd, "In the last five years, the U.A.W.’s membership at G.M., Ford and Chrysler has declined to 139,000 workers, from 305,000, because of plant closings and a series of buyout and early-retirement programs." Notice that 160,000 people are out of UAW jobs, MORE than those that are left. If I were those 160K workers, I would just build my own cars and put the Big Three the hell outta business. What are they waiting for?

Oh hey, maybe the union will save them...

The blame lies with the greed of the corporate elites.

Why? Because you sez so? Even in the face of overwhelming evidence that they have priced themselves out of the labor market?

Some union working person, making a decent living with the security of knowing they have healthcare when needed and a pension at the end of their working life cannot possibly be the source of the problem.

Sure they can, if as an aggregate, they are far too expensive. And they are. Far too expensive. Since they are far too expensive, there is always pressure to cut their costs. And that is exactly what has happened.

Focus your sights on the jerks making $40 million a year before you complain about working people.

Odd. You seem to want some people (UAW members) to be able to sign an employment contract for every penny that they can get, but you have a problem when other people (non-UAW members) want to do the same thing.

I don't know how many auto execs make 40 million a year, but if you fire him, and then divide that 40 mil among 300K workers, everyone gets about 130 bucks. After tax, about 98 bucks.

Yep. That will really help the company--destroying the CEOs and giving all them rocket scientists an extry 100 bucks. That will make all the difference in the world. Oh, well, except that they'll STILL be too expensive, and by destroying the company, they won't have ANY jobs for very long.

Smart plan.
Cordially,
Rush

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Message 839593 - Posted: 13 Dec 2008, 15:39:02 UTC - in response to Message 839428.  

I find it amusing some people blindly defend GM and the others in the big 3 hehe, When GM came out in congressional hears and stated they let their quality slip over the years.

I work on cars for a living and not just GM or Toyota, American cars have gotten better but American cars have far more breakdowns due to bad design and poor workmanship. Its a fact you can chose not to believe if you wish and I'm not going to bother to argue with you because I refuse to argue with the unenlightened.

Much information has come to light during the hearings over this bailout and much of it has to do with the UAW and retarded Union demands like paying people 95% of their pay after they have been laid off. Something which even now the Union agree's only to suspend not do away with.

I said it before and I'll say it again no way tax money should be used to bail them out no matter how much the economy will take a hit. Let them file chapter 11 and restructure. The Big 3 let poor work and the Unions run them into the ground not let them get themselves out of the mess or go out of biz.
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Message 839599 - Posted: 13 Dec 2008, 16:03:09 UTC - in response to Message 838009.  

What does your interpretation of flexible include?

The problem comes when the overseers use flexibility to mean sourcing materials and parts made overseas, taking jobs away in North America.

When they say working people have to start working split shifts to cover peak periods, when more people should be hired instead.

When they put employees on call, rather than keep them around full-time.

When they force employees to do extra work on their own time before or after a shift. (paperwork, vehicle pre-trip inspections, maintenance, or having coffee breaks and lunches by the company phone to still take calls... etc)

Well, you've got AT LEAST 160K workers sitting around doing nothing. They are already "organized," and, in theory, they all already agree with you. Why aren't they building their OWN cars? Why aren't they putting all your swell policies into effect at their own plants?

You see that way they can make every single part they need, never buying ANYTHING from overseas (kinda like you did with your computer, oh, wait, no you didn't, you bought a machine where sourcing materials and parts made overseas approaches 100%), never having split shifts, never having anyone on call. You can run this company EXACTLY how you wish, never having to worry about shareholders, or execs making 40 million a year.

What are you waiting for?? You've got 160 THOUSAND people jus' sittin' round!

The fastest growing business segments right now are the "temp" agencies.
Just another way to have disposable employees available.
Very flexible for the company but no security or future for the employees.

Well, with your company above, you won't have to worry about this. Just pay everyone, oh, say 500K a year. That should be enough, don't you think? That way everyone makes the same amount and no one can crab that some other undeserving rat is making more den dem!

I always get nervous when any boss types start throwing that flex word around because it almost always means some crappy deal is in the works for the employees.
I also notice that flexibility goes only one way. The company has it's policies and rules written in stone, with no possible means of exercising flexibility on their own part.

It seems the corporate world is permitted to be like a rock while the workforce must be made even more pliable.

Not at your special company. You could do whatever you wished. Personally? I would run 3 shifts, full time, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. And at 500K a year, you'll have no trouble at all finding union schlubs to work for you.

WHAT ARE YOU GUYS WAITING FOR!!?? You've got 160K TRAINED workers doing NOTHING!! What ARE you guys WAITING for??

I mean it's just that simple...

Right?
Cordially,
Rush

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Message 839679 - Posted: 13 Dec 2008, 20:48:05 UTC - in response to Message 839428.  

You've obviously spent longer living in Australia, than I did! A SUV, is different to a 'work horse' and always will be. City 'posers' have a different 'need' from a vehicle. Still its not as bad as Land Rover, who were once dominant, until the Discovery was unleashed and they lost those 'work horse' sales to the Land Cruiser - because they didn't break down. My uncle, in Australia has a SUV; its a Toyota as are most of his friends and associates.

If you have any doubts that my 'odd' Legend produces 225 bhp, then you are quite welcome to pay me a visit and I will demonstrate how I deal with the local 'boy racers' in their Subaru Imprezzas. I suppose the dyno could have been lying, too - 209 bhp at the wheels and with a Drag Co-efficient of only 0.31 means it is aerodymically, quite efficient, too. That same car, failed a UK MOT Test, on the emmissions test, twice, simply because the testers recorded figures that were too low! It is obviously not a standard UK spec engine, but there is no evidence that it has been altered, which can only mean that it is a Japanese spec engine. Try looking for JDM engines. Oh yes, before I forget, there is no 'cat', either. At the end of the day, it is a quicker car than my 3.2 Legend Coupe (230 bhp, according to the factory) and better on fuel and it feels almost as quick as my Lexus GS300 Aristo - which has a turbo-charged 3.0l V6 under the bonnet.

You only need 10 bhp to do 60 mph and you said that 20 bhp was needed to do 70 mph. Power requirements increase massively assuming cd remains constant; even using your 20 bhp figure, power had to double for a 1/6th increase in speed. Why then, are vehicles that are obviously not aerodynamically efficient being made? Stylists and fashion! People fresh out of University with degrees in Arts (!), seem to have more input on car design than Engineers, these days and the result of this can be seen with things like the Millennium Bridge in London, over the Thames, rather than the Royal Albert Bridge, over the Tamar River! Clue; one of these bridges had to be closed for remedial work soon after it opened, but it was not the one that I. K. Brunel built!

Quentin Wilson, called the FCX Clarity, the most significant car since the Model T, not me. Take it up with him, even though I believe he is probably correct! GM showed off 'Fuel Cell' cars a few years ago; one, to be exact, but where are they?

As to the question of the Unions in the Automotive Industry, there is no easy answer. Whatever happens, the company bosses and the Union bosses, will probably not suffer financially. Thats wrong. Just as wrong as it was for the NUM officials being on full pay, when they called a strike (without a ballot) in the UK, back in the 80's. I may have been a Shop Steward for another Union, but I always represented the feelings of the members, not the Branch officers. Personally, if I was in that position, though, I would accept a reduction in pay with an appropriate reduction in working hours. Time away from the work-place often has benefits that outweigh the 'cost'.

Just for your information, when I worked in Automotive Engineering, I worked for a very profitable UK company, that was 'bought' by an ailing US company (trying to buy itself out of the obvious trouble it was in), aided by a US bank. The name of that US company was Federal Mogul and I think I'm still legally 'gagged' by them!



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Message 840135 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 4:53:46 UTC

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Message 840232 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 16:57:24 UTC

"How much congressional involvement do we want with the Big Three auto companies? I'd say none. Congressmen and federal bureaucrats, including those at the Federal Reserve Board, don't know anymore about the automobile business than they know about the banking and financial businesses that they've turned into a mess. Just look at the idiotic focus of congressmen when the three auto company chief executives appeared before them. They questioned whether the executives should have driven to Congress rather than flown in on corporate jets. They focused on executive pay, which is a tiny fraction of costs compared to $73 hourly compensation to 250,000 autoworkers. The belief that Congress poses the major threat to our liberty and well-being is why the Founders gave them limited enumerated powers. To our detriment, today's Americans have given them unlimited powers." --George Mason University economics professor Walter E. Williams

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Message 840234 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 17:06:02 UTC

How is it that the southern Republican congressman/senators whine that the Unions should be giving up the ghost for the companies to receive less than half of what is really needed to keep the companies afloat.
Did we see this type of demands when the gov't wrote a blank check to the financial sector. NO we didn't

Seems when you actually produce a product with a Union you get enormous backlash. When you create nothing and employe people that are easily duped or are completely inept at their jobs you get a free pass on demands.

As the Brits would say... BULLOCKS.


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Message 840240 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 17:18:35 UTC

Senate to Middle Class: Drop Dead

Friday, December 12th, 2008

Friends,

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers start building only cars and mass transit that reduce our dependency on oil.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers build cars that reduce global warming.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers withdraw their many lawsuits against state governments in their attempts to not comply with our environmental laws.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the management team which drove these once-great manufacturers into the ground resign and be replaced with a team who understands the transportation needs of the 21st century.

Yes, they could have given the loan for any of these reasons because, in the end, to lose our manufacturing infrastructure and throw 3 million people out of work would be a catastrophe.

But instead, the Senate said, we'll give you the loan only if the factory workers take a $20 an hour cut in wages, pension and health care. That's right. After giving BILLIONS to Wall Street hucksters and criminal investment bankers -- billions with no strings attached and, as we have since learned, no oversight whatsoever -- the Senate decided it is more important to break a union, more important to throw middle class wage earners into the ranks of the working poor than to prevent the total collapse of industrial America.

We have a little more than a month to go of this madness. As I sit here in Michigan today, tens of thousands of hard working, honest, decent Americans do not believe they can make it to January 20th. The malaise here is astounding. Why must they suffer because of the mistakes of every CEO from Roger Smith to Rick Wagoner? Make management and the boards of directors and the shareholders pay for this.

Of course that is heresy to the 31 Republicans who decided to blame the poor, miserable autoworkers for this mess. And our wonderful media complied with their spin on the morning news shows: "UAW Refuses to Give Concessions Killing Auto Bailout Bill." In fact the UAW has given concession after concession, reduced their benefits, agreed to get rid of the Jobs Bank and agreed to make it harder for their retirees to live from week to week. Yes! That's what we need to do! It's the Jobs Bank and the old people who have led the nation to economic ruin!

But even doing all that wasn't enough to satisfy the bastard Republicans. These Senate vampires wanted blood. Blue collar blood. You see, they weren't opposed to the bailout because they believed in the free market or capitalism. No, they were opposed to the bailout because they're opposed to workers making a decent wage. In their rage, they were driven to destroy the backbone of this country, not because the UAW hadn't given back enough, but because the UAW hadn't given up.

It appears that the sitting President has been looking for a way to end his reign by one magnanimous act, just like a warlord on his feast day. He will put his finger in the dyke, and the fragile mess of an auto industry will eke through the next few months.

That will give the Senate enough time to demand that the bankers and investment sharks who've already swiped nearly half of the $700 billion gift a chance to make the offer of cutting their pay.

Fat chance.

Yours,
Michael Moore
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Message 840294 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 21:03:49 UTC - in response to Message 840240.  

Amen brother


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Message 840330 - Posted: 15 Dec 2008, 22:54:56 UTC - in response to Message 840294.  

Senate democrats voted the bill down too not just republicans. Its nice to live in fantasyland hehe.
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Message 840459 - Posted: 16 Dec 2008, 6:04:53 UTC - in response to Message 840240.  

Those bastard republicans understand business. They know that until the big 3 go into BK and shed their defined benefits pension plan and their 100% for life health coverage there is no possible way for any of the big 3 to turn a profit on their US operations. If the union won't negotiate this until the contract is up, then the Federal BK judge will have to impose it. It is going to happen, better for the union to negotiate the terms than be hung by them.


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Message 840463 - Posted: 16 Dec 2008, 6:08:51 UTC - in response to Message 840459.  

Those bastard republicans

I fault the deadbeat dads.
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Message 840550 - Posted: 16 Dec 2008, 11:35:54 UTC - in response to Message 840459.  

Those bastard republicans understand business. They know that until the big 3 go into BK and shed their defined benefits pension plan and their 100% for life health coverage there is no possible way for any of the big 3 to turn a profit on their US operations. If the union won't negotiate this until the contract is up, then the Federal BK judge will have to impose it. It is going to happen, better for the union to negotiate the terms than be hung by them.




I don't get the anger at working people for having a pension and healthcare.

Do you feel in some way seeing union members lose benefits that you somehow gain something?

Let's not play the "Race to the Bottom" game that the corporate elites and pampered wealthy are inducing into the workplace.
Fight to protect what you and other working people have and then fight for more.
Screw the neocon bastards who started this decline in earnings for the working class.

Eat the rich.
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Message 840587 - Posted: 16 Dec 2008, 15:01:29 UTC

Bankruptcy? Thats already been discussed. The question that comes up is, "would you buy a car from a company that filed bankruptcy?". I doubt it. Would you trust that company to be there when you need repairs or even parts.

Some would compare this with an airline going bankrupt. Not exactly the same thing. I buy a ticket for a flight with an airline. I purchase a car for multiple years. I also don't get a loan to get a flight. I'm also pretty sure I'm concerned about parts on the plane only its not me purchasing the part or making the repairs.

So no Bankruptcy is not an option for these companies. However I think if the Gov't would act as the germans japanese and korean gov'ts and pay all the health care for the workers at these companies and give the companies money for every car they sold overseas I'd think the Big 3 would be doing fine


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