Finally, something I can agree with Obama on! - Page 4
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Thread: Finally, something I can agree with Obama on!

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon View Post
    I'm at a loss here, since when is a fair wage, medical coverage, paid vacation, a retirement package, the right to work in a safe and non harassed work place unreasonable?
    As i said before the company tend to inflate the bottom line a heap (try 150%) when it is to their advantage. You make $24 a hour then they add up a lot of invisible stuff like social security, and unemployment benefits to the how much they pay line which is bull.
    A very gross oversimplification. In theory this is why the unions exist, but the unions have lost sight of ensuring these things while making sure that they don't make doing business cost prohibitive for the companies, and that's exactly what they've done.
    Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.

    Benjamin Franklin

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  3. #32
    I have been a union member before. Although there is some good to be said for them I have also seen the bad. One time when negotiations were going on between the company and the union the union walked away from the table before the last offer was presented by the company. They had their mind made up to strike. During the strike the union provided beer for those on the picket line. Rock and bottle throwing at not only those crossing the picket line but news reporters as well resulted in one reporter needing to be taken to the hospital for stiches. One statement by a union leader during the strike was "we are ready to stay out all year if we have to". Of coure he was ready, because he was still getting his very large salary while the members were doing without. I have also seen the union manage to keep some of the most worthless workers, if you can call them workers, from being fired for years. A number of years before this the International head of the union was on sixty minutes. When asked which type of government he thought was best he replied, Socialistic. I wonder how much or his gigantic salary he was willing to share?
    Of course to be fair the Company did not really care about the employees either. It was always a big tug of war between the company and the Union Reps.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

  4. #33
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    yep.

    + 1 hk!!! i still giggle about the echoing wall incident. i think we laughed so hard water came out through our nose!!!!! hahahahaha!

  5. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by gpbarth View Post
    First off, I don't read anything in this about UAW bringing down the economy. I read the union is a big part of bringing down the auto industry. Who said UAW brought down the real estate or mortgage business, the stock market, or anything else but GM, Chrysler and Ford?
    My reference was to the original article, I guess I didn't make that clear. ""All of these things are designed to have long-term payoffs for taxpayers, not just for individual businesses,” Obama said."" Obama referenced taxpayers, that means everyone and not just individual businesses, all peoples and the whole of the economic picture is being affected. Because big corporations' micro economics tend to effect the economy with macro reverberations, the auto industry's workers tend to be held in low esteem of because of the unions' tumultuous histories, and they are often sought as scapegoats and blamed for a poorly-functioning economy, both micro and macro.

    At least one Democratic representative of the Senate knows what the lies are:

    From Media Matters for America, December 4, 2008, Senate banking committee hearing:

    Sen. Casey: Autoworkers and union being "scapegoat[ed]" in auto-industry crisis

    During a hearing in the Senate banking committee, Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) responded to what he said was the "scapegoating of the men and women of organized labor" in the auto-industry crisis. He said, in part:

    "CASEY: I have to say also, with regard to the labor concessions -- Mr. [Ron] Gettelfinger [UAW president], I wanted to review some of those. Because I am stunned by the kind of -- when you hear the talking heads on television and when you read what some people say in this town and across the country about the mythology that's out there about how we're -- how we got to this situation. And, frankly, the scapegoating of the men and women of organized labor, and in particular, autoworkers.

    " Point number one: In 2005, cuts in wages for active workers and health-care benefits for retirees -- point number one. I'm reading from your testimony. Cuts for new workers, bringing the wage level down to 14 bucks an hour. How many industries are doing that? Reducing the company's liability for retiree health care by 50 percent. And I realize these have been in the record before, but it is very important.

    "And wages and benefits. You said yourself that they're about 10 percent -- 10 percent of the budget? You would think listening to some of the people talk out there, some of the so-called experts, that wages and benefits were 70 percent of the cost. So there's a lot of mythology, a lot of myth generally that has been put on the record.

    "In 20-- since 2003, downsizing by the companies has reduced their workforce by 150,000 people. That doesn't get said very often. The labor-cost gap with foreign transplant operations will be largely or completely eliminated. OK? So, it's -- I think it's important to put this information on the record for this hearing. And then we've heard this garbage about 73 bucks an hour. It's a total lie, and some people have perpetrated that deliberately in a calculated way to mislead the American people about what we're doing here. It's a lie, and they know it's a lie."
    Last edited by gdcleanfun; 01-01-2009 at 02:56 PM.

  6. #35
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    Clearing up more lies re: unions...

    Are you aware that GM's new hires are on a reduced-wages tier system when they hire in, at approximately $16 to $18 an hour? Even when new people are hired into a union shop, they do not receive the same pay as those who have "seniority." They still have to join the union because a unionized assembly plant is generally a "closed shop." That said, they still do the same work in the same amount of time as the original workers. I find it interesting that the study referenced below suggests how much longer it takes to build a product in the non-union shop compared to the union shop. Workers' pay is only a 10-20% cost of building a vehicle. How much less do automotive workers have to take in pay before they no longer earn a decent living wage? Would you suggest that the RN at the local hospital take a drastic cut in pay, and then would you expect the same level of service? How about for the local mechanic at the garage down the street? How might our safety suffer if people in your industry took an across-the-board pay cut, especially if they have trouble keeping up with the cost of living in the first place?

    ---

    From The Detroit News @ detnews.com | The Detroit News | Friday, January 2, 2009 | News, sports, features, blogs, photos and forums from Detroit and across Michigan

    Gettelfinger: Change policies to aid auto industry
    Ron Gettelfinger

    (Photo: GM's Richard Wagoner, Chrysler's Robert Nardelli, Ford's Alan Mulally and Ron Gettelfinger of the UAW testify on Capitol Hill. (Gerald Herbert / AP)

    This new year, we've got a huge task ahead of us: Restructuring the American auto industry for a viable, long-term future.

    It won't be easy -- just as it wasn't easy to win the emergency bridge loans which give us a chance for a brighter tomorrow. When we went to Washington seeking to help so that U.S. carmakers could weather the current economic crisis, many in the Beltway used this as an excuse to beat up on American companies and American workers.

    Then a funny thing happened: A lot of somebodies stood up to defend us -- including millions of people who were offended that Main Street manufacturing was subject to such intense scrutiny, while Wall Street investment firms were asked few questions and received a blank check.

    Now that America has decided to invest in the domestic auto industry, we have a promise to keep: We won't let you down. We're going to do the hard work necessary to rebuild our industry.

    All stakeholders must participate. Unfortunately, the terms of the loans approved by President George W. Bush single out members of our union, by demanding steeper and faster concessions from the UAW than from any other part of the industry.

    That's not right, and we'll work with the Obama administration and the new Congress to implement a more balanced approach. Along the way, we'll have to clear away some myths. For example, anybody who claims that union work rules interfere with efficiency is uninformed about the current state of our industry.

    According to the Harbour Report -- the standard for measuring auto plant productivity -- all 10 of the most efficient plants in North America are union plants. Union workers get the job done in less hours per vehicle than the competition.

    For example, according to 2008 Harbour data, it takes UAW members in Kansas City just over 19 hours to assemble a Ford F-series pick-up. It takes more than 32 hours to assemble the Toyota Tundra, a similar vehicle, at a non-union plant in Princeton, Indiana.

    While we're proud of what we've accomplished on the factory floor, the problems of the auto industry cannot be solved by our companies and our union alone.

    Cutting wages for middle class workers, for example, won't do any good for the American economy -- and it doesn't do much for automakers, either, since labor costs are just 10 percent of the price of a vehicle. Instead, we need a strong stimulus plan -- like the one planned by President-elect Barack Obama.

    And while we've worked as creatively as we can to control health care costs within the auto industry, America's health care crisis remains a national problem in search of a national solution. Economist Dean Baker has estimated that if the U.S. had a universal, national health care system similar to Canada, GM would have saved $22 billion during the past decade.

    Until we match our trading partners by creating a universal, national health insurance system, U.S. companies and U.S. workers will remain at a serious competitive disadvantage.

    We're also disadvantaged by current U.S. trade policies. To be clear, we're not making any excuses. The restructuring of our industry that is required in exchange for government assistance is starting now, regardless of whether we can achieve much-needed policy changes. But creating a viable auto industry for the long-term will require more than emergency bridge loans. It requires sound policies on incomes, trade and health care that will support working families -- and renew the U.S. economy.

  7. #36
    gpbarth Guest
    Might I suggest that the minimum wage be brought up to $16/hour, and then everyone would be earning a "decent living wage." Where does this stop? When I started at Motorola, I started at just over minimum wage, but then again, I wasn't skilled yet. When I left I was making $72K/year, but it took me over 20 years to get that. And had engineering skills. If I went to another company with the same skills, I would be expecting $72K per year.

    If you come into a job as un-skilled, why are you worth $16/hour?

  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by gdcleanfun View Post
    Are you aware that GM's new hires are on a reduced-wages tier system when they hire in, at approximately $16 to $18 an hour? .
    Those poor people, with their salaries at 244 to 275% of minimum wage. Who in the world can afford to live on that?
    Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.

    Benjamin Franklin

  9. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by gpbarth View Post
    Might I suggest that the minimum wage be brought up to $16/hour, and then everyone would be earning a "decent living wage." Where does this stop? When I started at Motorola, I started at just over minimum wage, but then again, I wasn't skilled yet. When I left I was making $72K/year, but it took me over 20 years to get that. And had engineering skills. If I went to another company with the same skills, I would be expecting $72K per year.

    If you come into a job as un-skilled, why are you worth $16/hour?
    Why isn't everyone worth $16 an hour? Doesn't everyone deserve a "decent living wage?" Yes, everyone does! Everyone! When will other industries "get it" and start treating their workers like decent human beings, rather than expendable business expenses?

  10. #39
    gpbarth Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by gdcleanfun View Post
    Why isn't everyone worth $16 an hour? Doesn't everyone deserve a "decent living wage?" Yes, everyone does! Everyone! When will other industries "get it" and start treating their workers like decent human beings, rather than expendable business expenses?
    So you're a socialist, eh? Why doesn't everyone deserve a house, two cars, free medical care, 30 days of vacation every year, etc., etc.? Who is going to pay for all of these perks? We are. That is, those of us who actually work for a living, and honestly earn their pay. Good ol' Robin Hood thinking.

    I have never had any problems working for any company I spent time with, with the exception of union companies. And I worked for the TWU, IBEW and Teamsters. I gladly accepted the offer of employment, worked hard at what I did, proved myself, learned and advanced. I didn't expect $16/hr. as a starting salary - I earned it. In union shops you don't earn it. Seniority rules - if you're an ********* who shows up every once in awhile and maybe works a little bit between smoke breaks (you won't get fired - you have a union steward to fight for you with management), you're going to get that next promotion over the guy who got hired the day after you did, who shows up for work religiously, every day, does his job and then some, learns how to do more and wants to get ahead.

    If you want that "living wage," earn it. Work your way up. Unemployed? Take whatever you can find, work hard...if the job doesn't pan out, look elsewhere. I don't know why everyone should be handed a job making a good wage when they haven't earned it. I believe in the rights of everyone to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But I don't believe that everyone should be handed them on a silver platter. If you don't earn something, you don't appreciate it, you expect it.

    And right now, that's what's happening to this country. Everyone is expecting a hand-out, everyone wants something for nothing, everyone wants to be bailed out of situations they got themselves into. Is that right?

  11. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by gpbarth View Post
    If you come into a job as un-skilled, why are you worth $16/hour?
    Those who work there are not unskilled, they are semi-skilled. As well, the work is not easy. As a matter of fact, it is often very hard. Why is everyone not worth $16 an hour. Everyone should be!

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