a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

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a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Tue Feb 03, 2009 12:32 am

http://money.cnn.com/2009/02/02/news/co ... 2009020215

Chrysler LLC is offering buyouts to all of its remaining U.S. hourly workers in its latest effort to cut costs and provide an exit for workers who are increasingly nervous about staying with the troubled automaker.

Chrysler is offering up to $50,000 to virtually all of its 27,000 U.S. hourly workers, along with a voucher good for up to $25,000 on the purchase of a vehicle.

I said this was a union bailout, and here it is. If Chrysler had gone into bankruptcy, guess how much they would've had to pay to terminate these guys? 0, instead we're giving them 75k. You can argue all day long about how it actually makes more sense for Chrysler to approach it this way, but ... you're still paying 75k to get rid of an employee. I mean other than in unions do you pay employees to quit.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby teflor the ranger » Tue Feb 03, 2009 12:42 am

kiryan wrote:http://money.cnn.com/2009/02/02/news/companies/chrysler_buyouts/index.htm?postversion=2009020215

Chrysler LLC is offering buyouts to all of its remaining U.S. hourly workers in its latest effort to cut costs and provide an exit for workers who are increasingly nervous about staying with the troubled automaker.

Chrysler is offering up to $50,000 to virtually all of its 27,000 U.S. hourly workers, along with a voucher good for up to $25,000 on the purchase of a vehicle.

I said this was a union bailout, and here it is. If Chrysler had gone into bankruptcy, guess how much they would've had to pay to terminate these guys? 0, instead we're giving them 75k. You can argue all day long about how it actually makes more sense for Chrysler to approach it this way, but ... you're still paying 75k to get rid of an employee. I mean other than in unions do you pay employees to quit.


We're giving them 75k each of our money. Work Harder. Millions of union workers that abused the system, the government, and politics for their advantage and not yours depend on you.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Sarvis » Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:21 am

kiryan wrote: I mean other than in unions do you pay employees to quit.


How about CEOs?
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby teflor the ranger » Tue Feb 03, 2009 4:04 pm

Sarvis wrote:
kiryan wrote: I mean other than in unions do you pay employees to quit.


How about CEOs?


Now that's a rare gem. A valid Sarvis point. And yet, I do believe that Kiryan is expressing a different type of outrage and that your point is mostly inappropriate. UAW workers are mostly moderately to unskilled labor, which anywhere outside of the UAW never receives very generous compensation for quitting. Executives on the other hand, all receive compensation.

The outrage is that UAW workers are getting something that comparable workers in other fields in America don't get.

Thus, taking abusive advantage of the country for their betterment. (You're supposed to take advantage, but if you go so far as to damage the industry and the economy, it becomes abusive.)
Last edited by teflor the ranger on Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Tue Feb 03, 2009 4:40 pm

Thats a good point sarvis, but it doesn't take away from my point.

I agreed in the other thread that bailed out companies can and probably should limit exec compensation. I am still in general against regulations to limit pay or to artificially inflate pay.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Tue Feb 03, 2009 7:30 pm

kiryan wrote:I am still in general against regulations to limit pay or to artificially inflate pay.


Are you against regulations that inflate pay relative to currency inflation? Because that hasn't happend either as far as I know. I agree, unions have fucked the US automakers; however, nonunion jobs have suffered greatly as far as currency inflation goes. They are just both on the extreme ends of the spectrum; furthermore, I think the prior hurts the economy considerably more in the long run. I say fuck the US automakers -- they skirt categorical critera and produce shitty products.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Botef » Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:54 pm

I live in Washington about 6 miles away from a similar size city in Idaho. From this vantage I can tell you that minimum wage increases in Washington has done more to inflate costs than to combat it. Every time wages go up, so do the prices. There is actually a group of us that place bets on new businesses lasting over a year. A pretty large number of them go under after a year when minimum wage gets its yearly booster and owners realize they can't inflate their prices and still compete with the Idaho business 6 miles away where the minimum wage is stable. Its had a remarkable effect over the last two decades on growth. Here in Washington we have jack shit in the way of new businesses unless its tied in with the University, while the city in Idaho has had two malls and countless other businesses pop up and be successful.

Another example I'm fond of is a friend of mine. He works at McDonalds, and has done so for a decade now. When you compare his hourly wage with someone who was just hired he makes about .25 cents more. Obviously you probably shouldn't be working at McDonalds as a laborer for 10 years anyways, but had he been in Idaho where minimum wage is stable he'd be living pretty comfortably instead of struggling to survive in Washington. Its not because he hasn't gotten raises, but because minimum wage increases undermine them and lead to higher expenses, exactly the kind of thing its supposed to combat.

I think federal regulated wage increases will probably do more harm than good in the long run, especially if its a yearly thing. Its like treading water. Eventually you'll become exhausted and sink.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:10 pm

Botef wrote:I live in Washington about 6 miles away from a similar size city in Idaho. From this vantage I can tell you that minimum wage increases in Washington has done more to inflate costs than to combat it. Every time wages go up, so do the prices. There is actually a group of us that place bets on new businesses lasting over a year. A pretty large number of them go under after a year when minimum wage gets its yearly booster and owners realize they can't inflate their prices and still compete with the Idaho business 6 miles away where the minimum wage is stable. Its had a remarkable effect over the last two decades on growth. Here in Washington we have jack shit in the way of new businesses unless its tied in with the University, while the city in Idaho has had two malls and countless other businesses pop up and be successful.

Another example I'm fond of is a friend of mine. He works at McDonalds, and has done so for a decade now. When you compare his hourly wage with someone who was just hired he makes about .25 cents more. Obviously you probably shouldn't be working at McDonalds as a laborer for 10 years anyways, but had he been in Idaho where minimum wage is stable he'd be living pretty comfortably instead of struggling to survive in Washington. Its not because he hasn't gotten raises, but because minimum wage increases undermine them and lead to higher expenses, exactly the kind of thing its supposed to combat.

I think federal regulated wage increases will probably do more harm than good in the long run, especially if its a yearly thing. Its like treading water. Eventually you'll become exhausted and sink.


Ok, so let me get this straight. You're saying a town where minimum wage has been stable (I'm reading this as not changed) for over a decade (I assume this per the second post) is easier to live in as opposed to a town where minimum wage increases along with inflation? This, for obvious reasons, makes absolutely no logical sense whatsoever -- anecdotal or not, there is obviously a causality mix-up going on here. First of all, if inflation causes the dollar to lose 50% buying power (i.e. $2 today = $1 yesterday), at $5/hr yesterday you're only making $2.5 today. Your expenditures reflect this loss in buying power; therefore, your bills cost twice as much while you still get paid the same. Mathematically, the person whose job does not have a payscale reflective of inflation will see a constant decrease in buying power and ultimately have to find a new job. On the other hand, the person whose job's payscale does reflect inflation will maintain the same standard of living due to cost/wage parity.

I'm willing to bet my left testicle that there are other variables at play causing one town to smother new businesses while the other prospers -- and I guarantee that minimum wage is a negligable part of that equation.

Moreover, I wasn't even speaking about minimum wage in the first place -- I'm saying all wages. Primarily, I'm speaking more about what used to be the middle class, which, as it so happens, has nothing to do with unskilled labor (retail, bottom level factory, fast food, etc.).
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Sarvis » Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:18 pm

Kifle wrote:
Botef wrote:I live in Washington about 6 miles away from a similar size city in Idaho. From this vantage I can tell you that minimum wage increases in Washington has done more to inflate costs than to combat it. Every time wages go up, so do the prices. There is actually a group of us that place bets on new businesses lasting over a year. A pretty large number of them go under after a year when minimum wage gets its yearly booster and owners realize they can't inflate their prices and still compete with the Idaho business 6 miles away where the minimum wage is stable. Its had a remarkable effect over the last two decades on growth. Here in Washington we have jack shit in the way of new businesses unless its tied in with the University, while the city in Idaho has had two malls and countless other businesses pop up and be successful.

Another example I'm fond of is a friend of mine. He works at McDonalds, and has done so for a decade now. When you compare his hourly wage with someone who was just hired he makes about .25 cents more. Obviously you probably shouldn't be working at McDonalds as a laborer for 10 years anyways, but had he been in Idaho where minimum wage is stable he'd be living pretty comfortably instead of struggling to survive in Washington. Its not because he hasn't gotten raises, but because minimum wage increases undermine them and lead to higher expenses, exactly the kind of thing its supposed to combat.

I think federal regulated wage increases will probably do more harm than good in the long run, especially if its a yearly thing. Its like treading water. Eventually you'll become exhausted and sink.


Ok, so let me get this straight. You're saying a town where minimum wage has been stable (I'm reading this as not changed) for over a decade (I assume this per the second post) is easier to live in as opposed to a town where minimum wage increases along with inflation? This, for obvious reasons, makes absolutely no logical sense whatsoever -- anecdotal or not, there is obviously a causality mix-up going on here. First of all, if inflation causes the dollar to lose 50% buying power (i.e. $2 today = $1 yesterday), at $5/hr yesterday you're only making $2.5 today. Your expenditures reflect this loss in buying power; therefore, your bills cost twice as much while you still get paid the same. Mathematically, the person whose job does not have a payscale reflective of inflation will see a constant decrease in buying power and ultimately have to find a new job. On the other hand, the person whose job's payscale does reflect inflation will maintain the same standard of living due to cost/wage parity.

I'm willing to bet my left testicle that there are other variables at play causing one town to smother new businesses while the other prospers -- and I guarantee that minimum wage is a negligable part of that equation.

Moreover, I wasn't even speaking about minimum wage in the first place -- I'm saying all wages. Primarily, I'm speaking more about what used to be the middle class, which, as it so happens, has nothing to do with unskilled labor (retail, bottom level factory, fast food, etc.).



You missed a key point Kifle: "A pretty large number of them go under after a year when minimum wage gets its yearly booster and owners realize they can't inflate their prices and still compete with the Idaho business 6 miles away where the minimum wage is stable."

This isn't much different than outsourcing in how it affects the economy of the town with minimum wage hikes.

It's also not clear if those wage hikes are actually pegged to inflation or not.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Wed Feb 04, 2009 12:29 am

Well, there's another common sense principle at play here, if that is the case: business owners who open retail shops who intend on competing with giants like walmart are fucking morons and shouldn't own businesses in the first place. If you can't compete, don't play the game. If you insist on playing the game, don't whine when you lose. The only small businesses that should open should be service providers, specialty shops, or small manufacturing plants -- otherwise it's a loss waiting to happen.

Now, as far as how this effects real-life minimum wages... I have no idea. I am still assuming there is a McDonalds in the shitty town that is still in business? Does this McDonalds pay it's employees an inflation pace wage?
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Botef » Wed Feb 04, 2009 2:35 am

Ok, so let me get this straight. You're saying a town where minimum wage has been stable (I'm reading this as not changed) for over a decade (I assume this per the second post) is easier to live in as opposed to a town where minimum wage increases along with inflation? This, for obvious reasons, makes absolutely no logical sense whatsoever -- anecdotal or not, there is obviously a causality mix-up going on here. First of all, if inflation causes the dollar to lose 50% buying power (i.e. $2 today = $1 yesterday), at $5/hr yesterday you're only making $2.5 today. Your expenditures reflect this loss in buying power; therefore, your bills cost twice as much while you still get paid the same. Mathematically, the person whose job does not have a payscale reflective of inflation will see a constant decrease in buying power and ultimately have to find a new job. On the other hand, the person whose job's payscale does reflect inflation will maintain the same standard of living due to cost/wage parity.


An increase in minimum wage is not equal to an increase in pay. Further more, it undermines anyone currently employed by detracting from any raises they get.

I see what your getting at, but in the case of minimum wage increases the only person it serves is the yet-to-be employee by assuring they have a similar buying power as the ones already employed. My example was illustrating that the buying power and quality of life between these two areas is virtually the same, but one has more growth & success than the other. Let me ask you this. How is it people have managed to improve their quality of life over the last 50 years amidst inflation and a lack of some kind of regulated inflationary wage increase? Minimum wage increases don't even address that, and federal minimum wage doesn't get adjusted often..

I'm willing to bet my left testicle that there are other variables at play causing one town to smother new businesses while the other prospers -- and I guarantee that minimum wage is a negligable part of that equation.


You can pay an employee 8.55 an hour to sell a hat that costs you $1.00 in washington, or pay an employee 6.55 an hour to sell the same hat in Idaho. If I went to Seattle I wouldn't see this, which is why I took particular care to illustrate that my perspective was from this vantage point. On the other hand, just about everything is more expensive in Seattle than in eastern Washington. But the economy isn't just state to state. If someone can make a hat for .50 in China instead of $1.00 in the US we know who is going to be making the hats.

My point was raising minimum wage regularly to combat inflation just leads to more of the same. You can live just as comfortably working and living in Idaho as working and living in Washington despite a 2.00 difference in minimum wage (it was closer to 2.75 a year or two ago). Now that doesn't hold true if I head west to Seattle where the cost of living is higher. But minimum wage doesn't need to be 8.55 here, and because it is business has a harder time operating and the cost of living goes up.

Moreover, I wasn't even speaking about minimum wage in the first place -- I'm saying all wages. Primarily, I'm speaking more about what used to be the middle class, which, as it so happens, has nothing to do with unskilled labor (retail, bottom level factory, fast food, etc.).


Your right, which is why I question what I'm doing responding. If I had to take a guess I'd say you have me pegged as conservative which is far from the case. If the cost of doing business goes up .30 per hour per employee then you better believe the cost of the goods those people produce/sell goes up too. It already does. Inflation doesn't end at the with production, it compounds itself as it moves along on its path to the consumer. This is one rare instance where I think business can micromanage inflation on their own and to an extent already do. The idea of states managing their minimum wages based on their own cost of living makes sense, but also has a compounding effect. Washington realized they can't continue to increase minimum wage every year for a reason.

Which brings me to the point of my original post. By regulating inflation through required federal wage increases you compound it further. My OP was probably not worded very well and I'm known for being terrible about getting a point across in writing so let me just sum up my viewpoint in one sentence: You can't beat inflation through inflation.

Explain to me how an employer can provide a yearly inflationary wage increase without inflating the price of his goods and services?
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Wed Feb 04, 2009 4:43 am

Botef, I think, for me, it comes down to managing profit margins. What you're basically spelling out, if I'm reading correctly, is a double inflation while wages only see a single inflation. In other words, currency is inflated naturally through money creation, then wages raise to match the inflation to maintain percentages of expenditures; however, you're also saying that companies must charge more to match inflation -- which would, in reality, be double inflation on the price of goods. This second inflationary process isn't necessary to maintain original profit margins for the company. So, I'm not exactly understanding the need for it.

To sum up, the second, synthetic inflation is unnecessary and does not impact wage/currency inflation or the profit margin. I may just be misunderstanding, however.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Wed Feb 04, 2009 7:09 am

when i said artificially inflate pay, i was talking about minimum wage. not inflation.

one point on the mcdonalds story is this guy has been working at mcdonalds for 10 years and makes basically minimum wage. If minimum wage had held steady, he'd be making a couple bucks more than minimum wage. Instead he's a minimum wage worker. I joke sometimes about the day when minimum wage is $25 an hour and all of us who though we were making good money realize we're making minimum wage.

Since we are on the topic of inflation... the government is in big trouble if there isn't inflation every year. First someday its gotta pay back the debt, but more sinister is that inflation masks the decline in our living standard because people are stupid and think they are making more just because they make 20k more than they did 10 years ago. Asset inflation was the main thing maintaining our living standards. Now about all we have left is to massive inflation to wipe out bad debt so that we can start the cycle over again.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Wed Feb 04, 2009 7:59 am

kiryan wrote:one point on the mcdonalds story is this guy has been working at mcdonalds for 10 years and makes basically minimum wage. If minimum wage had held steady, he'd be making a couple bucks more than minimum wage. Instead he's a minimum wage worker. I joke sometimes about the day when minimum wage is $25 an hour and all of us who though we were making good money realize we're making minimum wage.


If minimum wage had held steady, he would have exactly the same buying power he has now -- except we would call it something different. The new-hires, on the other hand, are even worse off than the guy who, for some reason, has been working at McD's for the last 10 years. These new-hires are making what the original worker made, except the buying power of that money has significantly dropped. In essence, they are making less than he did years ago when he started.

The principle of your argument, if taken to an extreme, and I only use this example to clarify my position, essentially states that it would be ok for McD's workers to start out at minimum wage of, say, 1960. You can google the exact number if you want -- I'm lazy. Regardless, nobody could survive today on '60's minimum wage. Therefore, it is only realistic to assume, and encourage some sort of minimum standard at which people must be paid for their time. More importantly, and on topic, the fact that the 10yr worker is now making barely above minimum wage is not a problem with minimum wage -- it is a problem of both him staying at McD's for 10 years and somehow not reaching at least manager status and getting salary and better benefits, but it is also a problem of wages not increasing with inflation -- my actual argument. If his wages would have raised alongside inflation, or at least in some form of corollary manner, he would be making the same percentage more than minimum wage as he had before minimum wage had been raised.

For instance:

I make $10 an hour after 5 years.
Minimum wage was $6 when I started.
The dollar has since lost 8% buying power due to inflation.
Minimum wage is raised to $6.48.
My wage is raise to $10.80.

After the increase, which is not counted as an annual raise (we'll call it a parity raise), both the starting workers and myself lose no buying power of our dollar. The business, accordingly, adjusts its prices due to inflation -- as is expected. The profit margin changes in raw numbers; however, the percentage remains the same. So, I would like to know: How is this A) bad for business and B) bad for the employees with seniority?
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Thu Feb 05, 2009 3:02 am

I think one of the primary points against minimum wage is that it makes more people minimum wage workers because salary does not keep pace with inflation. I'm really not kidding about some day minimum wage being $25 an hour and an ever larger % of us will be minimum wage workers.

Your last paragraph goes to this point as well... the business raises its prices because of inflation and then can raise the wages of its employees to mee the new minimum wage.

I understand what you are saying, and I understand why what I'm saying won't work because the overall picture is that the government needs and encourages inflation.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Nokar » Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:18 am

kiryan wrote:http://money.cnn.com/2009/02/02/news/companies/chrysler_buyouts/index.htm?postversion=2009020215

Chrysler LLC is offering buyouts to all of its remaining U.S. hourly workers in its latest effort to cut costs and provide an exit for workers who are increasingly nervous about staying with the troubled automaker.

Chrysler is offering up to $50,000 to virtually all of its 27,000 U.S. hourly workers, along with a voucher good for up to $25,000 on the purchase of a vehicle.

I said this was a union bailout, and here it is. If Chrysler had gone into bankruptcy, guess how much they would've had to pay to terminate these guys? 0, instead we're giving them 75k. You can argue all day long about how it actually makes more sense for Chrysler to approach it this way, but ... you're still paying 75k to get rid of an employee. I mean other than in unions do you pay employees to quit.



Companies almost every damn day pay overpaid execs and management idiots to quit... I don't hear you bitching about that?!

teflor the ranger wrote:UAW workers are mostly moderately to unskilled labor, which anywhere outside of the UAW never receives very generous compensation for quitting. Executives on the other hand, all receive compensation.

The outrage is that UAW workers are getting something that comparable workers in other fields in America don't get.

Thus, taking abusive advantage of the country for their betterment. (You're supposed to take advantage, but if you go so far as to damage the industry and the economy, it becomes abusive.)


Moderate to non-skilled labor? Some jobs in the assembly plants and assembly departments are non-skilled. Go try working in a machining area. It's just like a metalworking machine shop go tell one of those guys thet are non-skilled labor.

And again, Why is everyone bitching about what approx 27,000 employees of a company are being offered? Look at how much your government fucks you everyday. Look at how much pencil pushers and desk jockeys with exaggerated degrees screw companies and the general public everydamn day and get away with it.

27,000 out of how many millions of Americans in this country?!
Why aren't you bitching about how fucking overpaid professional athletes are?
Why are you bitching about how much the credit card execs make per year? Or the Fuel companies execs make?
How about the refinery employees make? Oil rig employees?
Are those moderate to non-skilled labor too? Go tell them that while your sitting at your fucking desk from on high.

It never ceases to amaze me how people who do very little physical work think they should make more money simply because they have a fucking degree!
Damn. get over egotistical self! It's a piece of paper! Try getting off your ass and doing a labor job, work for a union sometime, then come back and talk shit like you are now. The company already had those packages offered before they even got the money. They had money on hand. Why the hell do you think GM wanted to buy us? Why didn't you regurgitate that on here? Some people on here are living breathing Xerox machines! Or 4 year olds going through their Xerox stage. Repeating every damn thing they hear without any personal knowledge of it.

Yes I flew off the handle again. I agree the union has fucked the company on a lot of things. But you also need to look into how they have fucked their own people at the same time. Just like I told you before. Look at the differences between International Contracts and Local Contracts. Check those out before you lump everyone into one bucket labeling them as unintelligent labor workers they aren't doing skilled work.
How can you possibly justify sitting behind a desk working on a fucking computer system value added to the company unless that companies job product is computer systems. Your job would not aide in the creation, producation or installation of a part into a transmission, engine, car, etc.

You say that the uaw workers are taking your money. big fucking deal a possibility of 7 billion dollars.
How many people are on welfare? Food stamps, some sort of government assistance? How many people abuse that? How much money of your taxes do you think goes to people who don't deserve it in this country? Through government funded assistance, grants, special this or special that programs that get abused all the damn time. Yet you people bitch about a union worker who for the most part(most of them not all of them. There are some lazy asses in the mix!) just want to earn a living have a house, a vehicle paid for, etc. What the hell is wrong with that?

Look at the amnesty that the previous president gave to illegal immigrants. Look at all the programs set up for them. I know I know. Not all of them are lazy. A lot of them want to work. Make a good wage. How many of our tax dollars went into that funding?

Why is it that certain groups of people in this country will have a better chance at going to college than my daughter who is a straight A/B Honor Roll student simply because of the group they are in? Our tax dollars pay for that too save for a few programs out there and most of those are funded with grant money.

I hear you people bitching about the UAW worker making too much money, they don't do skilled work, yada yada yada! Well kiss my UAW ass. I do work, I do bust my ass. Come try and do my job for a day then tell me it is not skilled work, or moderately skilled labor work.
Have you ever done a labor job? Have you ever done a skilled labor job? Have you?
You ever worked in metalworking chemicals?
Ever worked in a place where even with ear plugs you still have to yell to talk to someone more than 2 feet away from you?
Ever worked in a place where a person can fall over of a heart attack and a member of management calls a emergency response unit, pulls the guy off the job and puts someone else up there just to keep the damn line running?
Quit being such a whiney ass about what kind of money other people are making. Does it really effect your job? Do you lose sleep over this stuff? Really? If you want that kind of money go out and find a job that offers it. You evidently have a degree or some type of certificate. Go for it. Just leave the average on the floor worker alone. You need to look at who ran the company into the ground. Wasn't us. Wasn't our union. Who controls the money? Who controls what models we make? Who controls what new ideas for concept vehicles or the technology they use? Who really determines what they think the customer wants in a vehicle? Sure isn't us. If it were do you think we would have let the company slump so low? Do you actually think we would have let a foreign company beat us at anything without a fight? NOPE!

There are a lot more pressing issues... More things that you could actually be arguing about.
I haven't seen you post anything about the next form of the Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act. Or the new gun control and licensing control they are trying to rush through the house now. Or any other thing going through to try and take away our constitutional rights.

Yet you argue to starve people and you bitch about people who make more money than you do.

I wish I had that kind of time available to waste on petty shit such as that.

let the beating begin. I got thick skin and broad shoulders.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Corth » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:00 am

The reason he cares is because he is paying for it... and really, he shouldn't have to.
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth

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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby teflor the ranger » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:06 am

Nokar wrote:
teflor the ranger wrote:UAW workers are mostly moderately to unskilled labor, which anywhere outside of the UAW never receives very generous compensation for quitting. Executives on the other hand, all receive compensation.

The outrage is that UAW workers are getting something that comparable workers in other fields in America don't get.

Thus, taking abusive advantage of the country for their betterment. (You're supposed to take advantage, but if you go so far as to damage the industry and the economy, it becomes abusive.)


Moderate to non-skilled labor? Some jobs in the assembly plants and assembly departments are non-skilled. Go try working in a machining area. It's just like a metalworking machine shop go tell one of those guys thet are non-skilled labor.


Without having the time in the next few days to read and respond to this post properly, I wanted to remark that machinists are moderately skilled laborers as they require a year of training and several years of on-the-job experience.

That being said, yes, Moderate to non-skilled labor. And no, I won't go tell a machinist they are unskilled laborers. I already called them moderately skilled labor.

And what Corth said.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Kifle » Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:41 am

Nokar, unskilled labor is a term meaning, essentially, that a person does not need additional schooling to perform a job. Most jobs in manufacturing plants are unskilled -- they push buttons with a few minutes training, they screw things in where they need to be screwed in, the bolt things on, etc. This is unskilled labor. Then there are the other jobs such as mantainanence and CNC type stuff. These are trade skill jobs -- such as mechanics, repairmen, etc. It is a different category. The majority of those jobs we are talking about, however, are unskilled labor -- Jobs which anyone of us could go in and perform tomorrow given the same five minutes of training. It could be argued, and I will at this moment, that it is more difficult to become comfortable with the register at a grocery store than it is to perform many of the line assembly jobs at "rate."

Having said that, I think Corth hit the nail on the head with his short post. He, as well as many other people, are angry because they are paying for this when they shouldn't have to. These companies, unlike the social programs you listed, are in the private sector. What we are seeing now is very close to communism without the state taking ownership in the companies. And, if you really think about it, our tax dollars would be doing more for us as taxpayers if the government did take ownership of these companies -- at least we would have a chance to see a better return (if we get a return at all) in our collective investment.

Lastly, on that topic, these companies have been ran into the ground, not only because of the UAW, but also because they are poorly run businesses with no foresight and an obvious lack of budget sense. These companies have chosen to keep their executives who have done such a poor job, thus giving the taxpayer little comfort when it comes to these loans. Furthurmore, these loans are going to companies who, as pointed out in previous threads, are largely employing foreign labor to produce their products -- moreso than their "foreign competitors." The reality of the matter is, that these loans aren't even going to "save" many US jobs -- they are saving jobs in mexico, china, taiwan, etc.

Finally, you are getting butthurt because maybe your job is being saved. I think it is a tad bit selfish and shortsighted to not understand why people are upset about this. Additionally, you attack, I'm assuming, Kiryan for his reasoning behind his response, calling him what boils down to "selfish," yet you are entirely guilty of the same practice -- you want to keep your job; therefore, the loans are understandable and equate to social programs. However, this last bit is not the case, nor can they be justifiably compared. Socialism and communism are two different animals which only partially use the same mechanics; yet, they can not be compared in the way that you are comparing them. For instance, healthcare: healthcare is a universal necessity to live a managable life; GM, on the other hand, is just another car company whose market share will be absorbed by other car companies. The end result of not having healthcare, in many cases, is death or debilitation. The end result of GM dying as an entity is people will buy a Ford or Toyota instead. The world drastically changes with the lack of one, whereas it stays the same without the other.

Furthurmore, the free market is largely being undermined and weakened by these bailouts (to banks included) to the point where competition is becoming less and less a factor in the survivability of a certain product. When this becomes the case, you see more "shitty" products being made and sold. Look at GM's hybrids compared to companies that are truely competative. Look at their main product lines compared to car companies that can survive based soley on their own means. Look at the survivability of GM cars to their competitors. In all areas, GM loses whereas toyota, hyundai, and honda have all created technology which has raised the marketability of their products. The person who would rather buy a cavalier over a civic knows absolutely nothing about cars. The bottom line is, GM failed and should die. End of story.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:36 pm

I can do and have done exhausting physical work.

Someone having a heart attack is sad, but that manager finding another body to keep the line moving is what keeps you all gainfully employed.

Are you really being honest with yourself about the unions influence on business? They may not make the decisions about what products to produce, but by being at an uncompetitive wage certainly doesn't help the company, nor do the strikes nor do the conditions in the contracts. Its easy to say you guys aren't in charge, but all these barriers that make the business weaker.

Look at boeing, their machinsts went on strike in September ish, cost the company a huge loss and now Boeing is laying people off. Go union! Direct correlation no, but its unarguable that the company lost money because it couldn't finish and ship product.

Together management and the unions have weakened all of the automakers to the point of collapse. Can you really say that its management when ALL 3 of the American automakers are in the exact same boat and complain about the exact same problem? I might argue that the automakers are only making SUVs and pickups because those are the only cars upon which they earn enough to support a union work force.

Ultimately, I don't know who is more responsible, but I doubt its all bad management. Its a common complaint at union shops that you lose dynamicness and flexibility due to union constraints. You can't get rid of poorly performing workers, you can't react to supply changes in an affordable manner. In the old days, you could get away with being inflexible, but in the era of globalism, let alone the depression, it means death.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Nokar » Sun Feb 08, 2009 7:49 am

When the hell did I bring up communism or socialism?
*scratches head*

Not quite sure how many time I need to say this to some people. You need to read how the local contracts differ from p[lace to place.
I am not at an "Assembly Plant". I am at a casting and machining plant. The only assembly we have here is 3 assembly departments to put all the parts in the transmission.

As far as striking, again see local contracts. Each one is different. We can't strike unless international says it's okay plus they have to inform the company ahead of time.

I don't agree with everything my union has done. There are several things I could point out again. but alas, I am tired of repeating myself.
I guess to all those opposed we can agree to disagree.

I still don't understand why people are so pissy at the UAW. These same people aren't bitching about the government giving banks a free $700 Billion. Yet they cop a shitty attitude for $7 billion with stipulations.
I don't hear people bitching about how many homes being taken away from americans, jobs being taken away from americans by the big business part and the banks.

Also, I don't remember who mentioned it, I don't work for GM.
Just at my plant if you only knew what all people turn in for ideas that could save money and such only to be turned down.
I'd really like for one of you to explain to me how a local union crew can determine what the corporation does.
You need to look at who was running the show. Don't give me this crap about corporate raiding. We are hourly employees. We do what we are told to do. The people who sit in the offices of the union halls and international unions they don't have much to do with anything that goes on with the corporation unless it is contrat negotiation time. At least that's how it is here. Maybe not up north or out northwest.
I've got right at 15 years with my company. I have had to go to schooling out of town. Almost had to go to germany to learn one of the new Vision systems and Rofen Laser welder systems they put in my department. I missed that outing by 3 months seniority. But still had the people email me a pdf of everything they went over in class and have had to use that and adapt it to use out on the floor as far as training anyone else. I've had to go to PECO in Ohio to go to schooling for other laser welder systems and RF Induction machines.
Have had 1 class in Atlanta on GE/Fanuc CNC programming.
The list goes on.

As far a five minutes of training. That may go out in assembly departments. That may even be true for a few operators running some of the jobs out on the floor. But most of the jobs in my area and in casting you get 5 minutes of training only you'll loose an appendage, limb or your life. You ever worked around an injection mold die cast machine? That molds molten aluminum or molten iron? Depending on what is called for in the machining areas? You ever work around RF induction coils that take a 4" long 1" thick solid piece of steel and turn it white hot in 6.7 seconds then quench it back down to close to room temperature in time about of time with nothing on that coil even touching that part? You have any idea the type of voltage or temperature we're talking about? You get your hand or something attached to your hand or body anywhere close to that coil. What ever is touching your body and the body part it is touching is pretty much toast. You'll be lucky if you are touching it with your right hand instead of your left hand so it doesn't go through your heart on it's way out your ass or heel. Back to casting. If Molten metal spills on the concrete floor out there it makes a small explosion. If they are melting down scrap aluminum from scrap product in the plant and it has any type of moisture in it, that can cause quite a bit of havoc. The Die machines they use for this are as big or bigger than some peoples garages.

I don't know what type of factory you think some of us work at but we don't have the luxury doing a job that is trainable in 5 minutes. Maybe on a lead-off CNC turning lathe operation where all you do is load parts into chucks, clamp the chucks then cyle the machine. *shrug*

As far and you guys paying for our loan. Sorry. The company asked for a fraction of what others have asked for and received. I would have thought you would have gotten red-assed about the financial institutions who received all that money free of charge then proceeded to waste it on bullshit things.

The average floor worker has very little pull with anything having to do with the company. The sooner you actually find this out the more you will understand. If you haven't worked it how can you tell people what it is like or what we can and can't do to the company or the union?
That's just like me walking into an operating room and telling the surgeon how to do his job.
I've seen alot of things on these forums for several years. I've seen alot of "experts" in everything. I would have thought at some point in time people would have actually went out and experienced the things that are talking about first hand. Instead of regurgitating what they find on new sites or answering peoples problems or questions on here by cutting and pasting what they find on google or yahoo.

All that being said. I'll not be posting anymore on this thread. I've said my peace.
I'm with the old adage... Buy american, the job you save may be your own.

We can agree to disagree.

L8r all,
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:33 pm

You're particular factory may not be a good example of union practices... or low skill labor getting amazing compensation. Also, you may not understand the business dynamics that are involved in the contracts and how that may affect what managers can or can't do and how quickly. I may be over estimating them as well, I'm certainly no expert, but I do read a lot of news.

I would like to know why you think its ok to say you have no responsibility. You pay union dues, vote on union leaders, vote to strike and ratify contracts.. yet it has nothing to do with you... you're just a guy following orders. Maybe you're the one intelligent guy voting against these onerous contracts, maybe you're just the guy who votes the same way everyone else does because you don't want to make waves. I don't know and I'm not judging you, but I am passing udgement on unions based on what I understand. You might want to ask yourself why you would need to defend the union if you're being paid market wages under a market labor contract.

Yes, have worked around dangerous manufacturing equipment. Not constantly, not long term and not at the level you do. I worked at this company where this stupid lady tested how hot liquid solder was by placing her finger in it. She literally blew the flesh off her finger. Union made sure she got paid well and that the company had to erect all these safety things to protect basically stupid people from obvious common sense dangers.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby teflor the ranger » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:46 am

I can think of another time in American history where a group of people made significantly more money than most performing similar work, but followed different rules.

I think they were called slave-owners.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:50 pm

http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/ ... H120090210

GM laying off 10k white collar workers. Union workers are offered buyouts of ~ 75k. White collar folks will probably get the standard 1 week of severance per year of employment.

You have to wonder why it is cheaper for GM to offer 75k buyouts to union workers than it is to lay them off.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Thu Apr 02, 2009 12:13 am

Someone reputable calling this out. The sad part of this whole thing is basically we pay more for cars because the Unions lobby Democrats to protect their high wages. This happens in government jobs too.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123853988781575499.html

It's a bluff. The same administration that inserted itself into GM's corporate governance to order the resignation of a CEO is hardly likely to defer to the prescribed legal order for a failing company, namely bankruptcy. Even a "prepackaged" filing runs too much risk of a judge imposing more "sacrifice" on the UAW than the administration is prepared to tolerate.

GM bondholders understand this: They've been intransigent precisely because they calculate the UAW is too important to Democratic electoral politics for Mr. Obama to risk losing control of the reorganization process to a bankruptcy judge.

The GM bailout has become a political operation run out of the White House. It will stay that way. Talk of UAW layoffs already disguises the fact that UAW workers are actually offered generous buyouts and early retirement -- they aren't just sent away with a last paycheck. ...

...

Known as the "two fleets" rule, it effectively forces Detroit to make its cheap small cars in high-wage domestic UAW factories, even if it means losing money on every car. The rule has no fuel-economy function. Its only purpose is to shield the UAW monopoly inside each Detroit auto maker from global labor competition.

You wouldn't have noticed, but a legislative accident two years ago almost stripped away the two fleets rule. A couple of Republican senators from the South took the lead in crafting the Senate's new fuel economy bill, and built it to please Nissan, which had railed against two fleets for its own reasons.

In the final bill, to no one's surprise, two fleets was quietly restored by Rep. John Dingell and Illinois Sen. Obama (among others) as a political favor to the United Auto Workers.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Nokar » Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:40 am

You should really look up the price breakdown per vehicle and then judge the uaw. Our wages are a small percentage of what makes vehicles cost so damn much.

teflor the ranger wrote:I can think of another time in American history where a group of people made significantly more money than most performing similar work, but followed different rules.

I think they were called slave-owners.

OMG! You can't be serious about this. My 55-72k a year job is considered to be a slave owner. That has got to be the stupidist thing I have heard on here yet. What about the 200k jobs the aig supports? What about how many fucking billions of dollars they got with no strings attached then turned around and gave the same people who drove the company into the ground multi-million dollar bonuses? How is it that politicians, ceos, vp's, pencil pushers and keyboard button punchers who make more than I do, how is it they are not the slave owners, you dolt?
Open your damn eyes! It is obvious they neither of you have really, for any length of time, worked for a union or in a union factory(Automotive end not some other union).
I have seen on here that we are to blame for the economy, the american automotive base going to shit and other things. Who the hell was running the company? Wasn't us? and if the company didn't feel they could agree to the negotiated contract they should have said no to what the union officials in detroit asked for.
Don't give me this shit of corporate raiding. That's just a fucking cop out. Just be honest. You want to pay your workers the least amount possible while making the most profit imaginable. You should look at the latest figures on what toyota employees or SIA employees make. They are not that far off from what I make and they have better friggin insurance coverage.
So what if the white collar workers don't get a buyout package at gm. They did where I am at. Why should they get a buy out offer? They are the ones who statistically have a better chance at finding gainful employment after they are gone. Where as a factory worker as some of you feel are a dime a dozen.
Of all the recent bullshit about AIG and other drivel that has been on the news lately you pick this to bring back up. Jeezus, If I had that much time on my hands I would look up internet porn, crank one off then go to bed. Or at least play a game. Oh but wait, I'm a non-skilled laborer I'm supposed to work my ass off simply because I don't have a certificate of completion, associated degree, bachelors degree, etc. and you do! HA! Just because you have a piece of damn paper for networking no less does not make you smarter or more qualilfied. Just means you spent money to have someone print out a paper that say "YAY! I know how to work on computers" Big deal. It is the same poeple with degrees that have put the industry, and most of the damn country in a world of shit.
Bah! flame on. Who cares.
When all hell breaks loose, the market goes down, everybody is down guess who you uppity assholes will be asking for help because you don';t know how to wipe your asses by yourself. The little people.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Corth » Thu Apr 02, 2009 3:36 am

Kiryan,

I was thinking its a bluff too but now I'm not so sure. Maybe the political benefit of saying no to a bailout exceeds the cost of screwing over the unions. Its not like the unions are about to endorse Republicans.. he may as well take them for granted.

Fact of the matter is that bankruptcy court is the entity best designed to handle a restructuring of GM. First and foremost, it can break contracts. Thats something Obama and his team cannot do. He can try and convince the unions and bondholders to make concessions, but at the very least you need the threat of bankruptcy to provide leverage to get them to budge. More likely, even with that leverage the concessions being asked for are just too great for the respective parties to voluntarily bear. A bankruptcy judge will tear through all that bullshit. Unions.. your contract is void. Bondholders, you are entitled to this many pennies on your dollar. I think the Obama administration has realized that politics aside, bankruptcy is the only way this will ever work out.

Chrysler is in deep shit. Unlike GM which is considered viable after being restructured in bankruptcy, Chrysler, according to the Obama administration, is simply not a viable company. I would imagine that the deal with Fiat will get done, even if it costs the government a shitload of money, but if it doesn't.. look out below. We are talking Chapter 7 liquidation. Some of the more profitable assets will be purchased by other companies but most of Chrysler would just be gone.

One last point. I think Obama did the right thing when it comes to the auto manufacturers. Good for him. But I can't help but feel empathy for the auto workers, who make a damn good argument: Why do the rich executives on Wall Street get completely bailed out at taxpayer expense, but us blue collar workers get the shaft? It would be a drop in the bucket to save Chrysler compared to what is being thrown down the AIG black hole. Not that I'm advocating a Chrysler baillout.. just pointing out how arbitrary and unfair the government's actions have been. The laid off blue collar workers have a right to complain as they're tax dollars go towards making Goldman Sachs whole on their bets with AIG.
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth



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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Sarvis » Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:52 pm

Corth wrote:The laid off blue collar workers have a right to complain as they're tax dollars go towards making Goldman Sachs whole on their bets with AIG.



Well, technically if they're unemployed they aren't going to be paying taxes. ;)
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Corth » Thu Apr 02, 2009 2:08 pm

Point taken!
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth



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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Delmair Aamoren » Thu Apr 02, 2009 5:46 pm

teflor the ranger wrote:I can think of another time in American history where a group of people made significantly more money than most performing similar work, but followed different rules.

I think they were called slave-owners.


Totally off-topic and inflammatory.

There are socioeconomic lines drawn in the sand in the USA. Welcome to capitalism. Yes, education has historically been a gauge of approximate income. I'm not certain this model is as exemplary of todays situation, however. I know many people who went to college and recieved a 2 or 4 year degree, just to find a career in a completely unrelated field.

There is a difference between skilled/moderately skilled/unskilled labor. There always will be. The "skill" or education involved is part of the checks and balances that the laborer is both educated in, and in most cases is certified/licensed/etc. in their particular skillset. Would you ever go to a doctor that is unlicensed? I sure as hell wouldn't. Also, i wouldn't trust an auto manufacturer if the person who manufactured/installed safety devices in my car hand't been appropriately educated. In some fields there is a HUGE educational burden and thus a HUGE difference in pay. If you can't handle that, move to Denmark. I've heard there you basically get the same lifestyle regardless of what you do. Its socialism to the extreme. And according to studies they actually have the highest quality of life!

As it stands, our capitalist economy has raged out of control for too long, and now we're paying the price.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Thu Apr 02, 2009 7:24 pm

Corth, I absolutely agree. I about drove into the ditch when I heard what Obama was saying. I don't know about the political cost to bailout vs not to bailout. I want to believe this is not a bluff, but I'll be moderately surprised if any of the automakers goes into bankruptcy.

Democrats get most of their money from unions, most of their volunteers from unions... it is there bread and butter and the key to the next and the next and the next election. Look what happened when Republicans selected McCain (a quite liberal republican)... no turn out the vote effort. You must energize your base to win these days... In Oregon, a union up here sent some of the house members an email telling them if they didn't push through certain legislation then they could expect reprecussions next election. This is how unions operate. They muscle with money, lobbying, strikes and other aggressive retaliatory actions. Obama knows this... do you think they are kidding when they say "chicago thug style politics"?

---

and hey ill be the first to agree that the difference between the treatment of wall street and the automakers is unfair, andit wasnt right in the first place. However, just because AIG got billions and bonuses, doesn't mean we should do it for the automakers too so the unions can get paid. Its unfair and this is the problem with the government being in control of everything, the expectation is that they are "fair".

This is still a union bailout, not an automaker bailout. What will really piss me off is when they offer more "buyouts" to union employees with federal dollars right before they file for bankruptcy or the government steps in and tells all the bondholders to take cuts and preserves the onerous union contracts that I still maintain is responsible for the malise at the automakers.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Ragorn » Thu Apr 02, 2009 9:39 pm

Wait, I thought the democrats' base was arugala-eating intellectual elitists... now we're union auto workers? I'm so confused.
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Corth » Tue May 05, 2009 7:30 pm

Without going into detail, the Chrysler bankruptcy seriously effects my business. I was very unhappy to see it happen.

That being said, I completely stand by the decision of the hedge funds to not cave into the government's demands. I think its atrocious the way they have been treated. The article linked below is a great defense of their actions, and an indictment of the Administration's handling of this situation.

http://www.businessinsider.com/henry-bl ... ama-2009-5
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby Sarvis » Tue May 05, 2009 7:42 pm

Corth wrote:Without going into detail, the Chrysler bankruptcy seriously effects my business. I was very unhappy to see it happen.


Fewer cars = fewer ambulances to chase? ;)
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Re: a union bailout, not an automaker bailout

Postby kiryan » Thu May 07, 2009 2:36 pm

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/05/ ... sBySection

I think this story, despite being an opinion piece, pretty much tells the story.

1. Obama's administration is in control of the auto makers... and by inferene the other bailed out companies and they are using the bully pulpit and chicago thug politics to publicly harangue, intimidate and coerce everyone to go their way.
2. Hallowed rules of bankruptcy / business / contract law are being broken to:
a. take money away from the senior creditors whose money was secured by Chrysler's assets... people who loaned them money despite knowing there was a good chance they were going into bankruptcy.
b. give that money to unions

I think the title of the thread said it all. Not an automaker bailout, a union bailout.

On a side note, Bush has been shown to have wholly abuse the law... however what Obama is doing here is the same and worse for many reasons. Government running business, THIS IS COMMUNISM. However, thats not the biggest thing you need to worry about. What you all need to worry about is how this is going to affect business in america. business today does not know what the rules of the game are and that is the foundation of our wealth. Obama has come out and said we are going to raise taxes, and take control of businesses that we determine are critical to our economy and not running well. That reminds me of a certain marxist south american dictator named Hugo Chavez.

You obama voters better start pulling your heads out.

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