My open letter to the UAW

munchkinmunchkin Curl ConnoisseurPosts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
My open letter to the UAW:

First things first. . . you are not negotiating with Management this time around. You are negotiating with the taxpayers of the United States. Many of them have (a) lost their jobs, (b) been forced to take wage cuts, or (c) have taken benefit concessions over the past few years. Why do you think you are above having to do what they have had to? Giving up your job money pool (money to supplement unemployment) to me is no concession. That was something none of us ever had to begin with; in fact, I had never even heard of such a thing.

Let's get real. You are going to have to decide what is more important: a job with possibly less pay and smaller benefits or no job at all. I worked for a company where we all had to face this; we decided a job was more important.

Do you even pay a penny towards your health insurance? Most of us pay a good chunk out of each paycheck to enable our employers to be able to provide it for us. The majority of us do not have free health insurance provided in retirement. Most of us cannot retire early with outrageous benefits.

When everyone (management and union) at the auto manufacturers agree that keeping their companies operational is their most important goal and are willing to take major concessions, then maybe we will tell our congressmen to back a bailout for your industry.

I find it very ironic that the UAW wants to blame the Republicans in Congress for the bailout not passing, when to me they are only abiding by the wishes of their constituents.

If this bailout does not go through, look in the mirror. That is who you can blame.
3b/c

Comments

  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Curl Connoisseur Posts: 31,259Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    If the bigshots on Wall Street had their compensation packages looked at with the same scrutiny as the auto industry, I might agree with you. Not ONE thing was done about any of those over-inflated Wall Street salaries and bennies before they got handed 300 TRILLION. Not one thing.

    The auto industry is the last vestige of blue collar jobs in the USA that can actually earn a living wage. There used to be tons of them. Slowly and surely they have all been shipped overseas. Now you want to get rid of the last living-wage jobs. Nice.
  • TrenellTrenell Curl Connoisseur Posts: 3,562Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    If the bigshots on Wall Street had their compensation packages looked at with the same scrutiny as the auto industry, I might agree with you. Not ONE thing was done about any of those over-inflated Wall Street salaries and bennies before they got handed 300 TRILLION. Not one thing.

    The auto industry is the last vestige of blue collar jobs in the USA that can actually earn a living wage. There used to be tons of them. Slowly and surely they have all been shipped overseas. Now you want to get rid of the last living-wage jobs. Nice.


    Ok. so it's not just me. I don't profess to know that much about this sort of thing. But what you said was my gut reaction. I wondered about the differences between the wall street and the UAW
  • journotravelerjournotraveler Posts: 2,816Registered Users
    Trenell wrote: »
    If the bigshots on Wall Street had their compensation packages looked at with the same scrutiny as the auto industry, I might agree with you. Not ONE thing was done about any of those over-inflated Wall Street salaries and bennies before they got handed 300 TRILLION. Not one thing.

    The auto industry is the last vestige of blue collar jobs in the USA that can actually earn a living wage. There used to be tons of them. Slowly and surely they have all been shipped overseas. Now you want to get rid of the last living-wage jobs. Nice.


    Ok. so it's not just me. I don't profess to know that much about this sort of thing. But what you said was my gut reaction. I wondered about the differences between the wall street and the UAW

    ITA. and from what i understand, according to MSNBC, the autoworkers in the south, who work for the japanese plants, actually make a few pennies more per hour than the UAW workers do.
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  • munchkinmunchkin Curl Connoisseur Posts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    The Wall Street bailout wasn't to put money in the big shots pockets, it was to stabilize our banking system which, if failed, would have destroyed all of us. Granted not enough was done initially to monitor what the executives on Wall Street were making post bailout money, but I do think a lot of scrutiny has since been put in place.

    I saw on one of the morning shows a laid off auto worker and a laid off (single mom) who had been an administrative assistant at Lehman Brothers. They are who you should be comparing. Believe me, she wasn't getting near what her UAW counterpart was and she didn't expect it.

    I still find it ironic that the UAW says no concessions. Gee, if I had said that to my employer, I wouldn't have a job today. I wrote to my congressmen and told them I would not support them if they supported an auto bailout that didn't include broad concessions by everyone (management on down) in the industry. Last polls I have seen on line point to about 60-65% of the country agree with me.
    3b/c
  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    I have mixed feelings. I think that in a market driven society, if you build a product that people don't buy, then you go out of business. But I live in a state with three UAW plants so I want the bailout so that I can keep my job.

    I think the UAW contract has to be reopened.
  • susancnwsusancnw Curl Novice Posts: 1,374Registered Users Curl Novice
    munchkin wrote: »
    My open letter to the UAW:

    First things first. . . you are not negotiating with Management this time around. You are negotiating with the taxpayers of the United States. Many of them have (a) lost their jobs, (b) been forced to take wage cuts, or (c) have taken benefit concessions over the past few years. Why do you think you are above having to do what they have had to? Giving up your job money pool (money to supplement unemployment) to me is no concession. That was something none of us ever had to begin with; in fact, I had never even heard of such a thing.

    Let's get real. You are going to have to decide what is more important: a job with possibly less pay and smaller benefits or no job at all. I worked for a company where we all had to face this; we decided a job was more important.

    Do you even pay a penny towards your health insurance? Most of us pay a good chunk out of each paycheck to enable our employers to be able to provide it for us. The majority of us do not have free health insurance provided in retirement. Most of us cannot retire early with outrageous benefits.

    When everyone (management and union) at the auto manufacturers agree that keeping their companies operational is their most important goal and are willing to take major concessions, then maybe we will tell our congressmen to back a bailout for your industry.

    I find it very ironic that the UAW wants to blame the Republicans in Congress for the bailout not passing, when to me they are only abiding by the wishes of their constituents.

    If this bailout does not go through, look in the mirror. That is who you can blame.


    BRAVO! NO operable business model makes a product that loses money every single time (to the tune of $3400) when a comparable product is made at a profit! Sheesh. If my husband sold the furniture he makes at a loss, we'd be out on the street in a month...so why can they do it?

    Unions were indeed good in the day, they did a lot of good things for the workers, but thanks to government regulations, they are no longer necessary and are a drain on their industry. Let's face it. If you subtract the union dues from their hourly wage...how much would they be making? I've never seen that anywhere.
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  • curlyarcacurlyarca Curl Connoisseur Posts: 8,449Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    I hope we go into a Depression.

    I love how people talk about it so cavalierly, like it's no big deal. Kind of like I hear some people talk about the Holocaust as if to say people who died in it were dumb and didn't try hard enough to get away or didn't hide well enough.

    Yeah, just let the entire economy fall flat on it's face. That'll show em. Free market! Boy, I'm SO glad I live in a republic. :roll:

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  • munchkinmunchkin Curl Connoisseur Posts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    curlyarca wrote: »
    I hope we go into a Depression.

    I love how people talk about it so cavalierly, like it's no big deal. Kind of like I hear some people talk about the Holocaust as if to say people who died in it were dumb and didn't try hard enough to get away or didn't hide well enough.

    Yeah, just let the entire economy fall flat on it's face. That'll show em. Free market! Boy, I'm SO glad I live in a republic. :roll:

    So if we go into a recession/depression, who do you blame? Those of us who don't support a bailout without broad concessions, or those workers who won't make the concessions.

    Personally, I would like to see them forced into Chapter 11 and reorganizing. The unions would find their contracts all would be up for renegotiating. They wouldn't have a choice.

    All those of us who oppose a broad bailout are asking for are wage and benefit concessions, which I'm sure you are now saying "what do you mean all we are asking for"! A very broad spectrum of the society has already been faced with those choices and realized there was no choice. Why do the people in this industry think otherwise.

    If we go into a recession/depression, don't blame me. . . blame the auto workers who think they can be stubborn and call our bluff.
    3b/c
  • susancnwsusancnw Curl Novice Posts: 1,374Registered Users Curl Novice
    Bailout and demand the bankruptcy. Demand overseers, etc. The only way to break those contracts is to declare bankruptcy.

    20+ years ago I was living in Houston and riding the park and ride with a young lady who was very angry that her Texas was not union. Her father made $35+/hr in Detroit (this was in about $1980 which wasn't bad), but had moved to Tx to find work. I asked her why they had moved to Tx to work if he could make so much in Detroit. No work! Sweetheart....are you NOT seeing the correlation? She just did not get it. She'd been raised so immersed in the union culture that she couldn't see how much damage those union wages were doing to the auto industry.

    Please excuse any incoherence...I took migraine meds and am slightly loopy.
    My son wears combat boots (and a parachute). So does my son-in-law.
    The older I get, the less patience I have with cleverness. Thomas Sowell.
    Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve. Benjamin Franklin.
    Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. Mark Twain.

    s-event.png

  • starg2008starg2008 Posts: 219Registered Users
    Myradella3 wrote: »
    I have mixed feelings. I think that in a market driven society, if you build a product that people don't buy, then you go out of business. But I live in a state with three UAW plants so I want the bailout so that I can keep my job.

    I think the UAW contract has to be reopened.

    Me and you are in the same boat. The governor of iowa has said if they fail 35,000 people here will lose their jobs. I work in a UAW plant also, so does my husband. What will happen to us? we have a little one, crime here is getting out of control. even churches are not exempt from the crime. Renegotiations are months away, will we make it until then?
  • mpgirlmpgirl Posts: 1,163Registered Users
    First, I want to remind everyone that this is not a bailout as it was defined for the financial institutions, it is a bridge loan. This is very similar to what the government did for Chrysler oh so long ago...

    Second, I don't like how the big 3 have spent their money OR made their decisions, but like it or not the auto industry has somehow become a national treasure and as such if it were to go bankrupt the ripple effect would be more than I want to participate in.

    Yes, forcing them to reorganize might allow them to "break" the unions if that is what you all want, but the job losses in the interim would be catastrophic. Think very hard about what you would wish for...

    The sticking point for the southern republicans (who all, I might add are from states that have foreign car plants as residents) is that the UAW will not take a few more dollars in pay cuts to equal those of workers in said foreign car plants. The amount is less than $10 per hour. Are you kidding me? Funny, if the big 3 go into bankruptcy how good a gig is that for the foreign car makers?

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  • MagooMagoo Curl Neophyte Posts: 2,173Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    susancnw wrote: »
    munchkin wrote: »
    My open letter to the UAW:

    First things first. . . you are not negotiating with Management this time around. You are negotiating with the taxpayers of the United States. Many of them have (a) lost their jobs, (b) been forced to take wage cuts, or (c) have taken benefit concessions over the past few years. Why do you think you are above having to do what they have had to? Giving up your job money pool (money to supplement unemployment) to me is no concession. That was something none of us ever had to begin with; in fact, I had never even heard of such a thing.

    Let's get real. You are going to have to decide what is more important: a job with possibly less pay and smaller benefits or no job at all. I worked for a company where we all had to face this; we decided a job was more important.

    Do you even pay a penny towards your health insurance? Most of us pay a good chunk out of each paycheck to enable our employers to be able to provide it for us. The majority of us do not have free health insurance provided in retirement. Most of us cannot retire early with outrageous benefits.

    When everyone (management and union) at the auto manufacturers agree that keeping their companies operational is their most important goal and are willing to take major concessions, then maybe we will tell our congressmen to back a bailout for your industry.

    I find it very ironic that the UAW wants to blame the Republicans in Congress for the bailout not passing, when to me they are only abiding by the wishes of their constituents.

    If this bailout does not go through, look in the mirror. That is who you can blame.


    BRAVO! NO operable business model makes a product that loses money every single time (to the tune of $3400) when a comparable product is made at a profit! Sheesh. If my husband sold the furniture he makes at a loss, we'd be out on the street in a month...so why can they do it?

    Unions were indeed good in the day, they did a lot of good things for the workers, but thanks to government regulations, they are no longer necessary and are a drain on their industry. Let's face it. If you subtract the union dues from their hourly wage...how much would they be making? I've never seen that anywhere.


    Although, I agree with the statements made that letting the big 3 fail will definitely affect a lot of hard working Americans, I also agree with this statement. Sure, the Big 3 have made some poor financial decisions but there was a time when unions were needed because of employer abuse and bullying, now it seem like the Unions are the ones that are the bullies. It's like "either meet our demands, or else". They have a lot of these companies by the "you-know-whats".

    At my job we've had members from some local union picketing outside with a big inflatable rat all week because my employer hired a contractor that uses non union labor to perform some work in the building. Last time I checked this was a free country where anyone was free to hire whoever they wanted to do work for them.
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  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    starg2008 wrote: »
    Myradella3 wrote: »
    I have mixed feelings. I think that in a market driven society, if you build a product that people don't buy, then you go out of business. But I live in a state with three UAW plants so I want the bailout so that I can keep my job.

    I think the UAW contract has to be reopened.

    Me and you are in the same boat. The governor of iowa has said if they fail 35,000 people here will lose their jobs. I work in a UAW plant also, so does my husband. What will happen to us? we have a little one, crime here is getting out of control. even churches are not exempt from the crime. Renegotiations are months away, will we make it until then?

    Let me clarify. I don't work for the auto industry nor am I a UAW fan. I am a state employee in a state with auto plants on which the state depends to pay my salary.
  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    mpgirl wrote: »
    The sticking point for the southern republicans (who all, I might add are from states that have foreign car plants as residents) is that the UAW will not take a few more dollars in pay cuts to equal those of workers in said foreign car plants. The amount is less than $10 per hour. Are you kidding me? Funny, if the big 3 go into bankruptcy how good a gig is that for the foreign car makers?

    Things that make ya' go hmmm...:idea1:

    Mississippi has a Nissan plant that got all kinds of taxpayer assistance and incentives to build. They also got land that had been in a family since the mid-1800s. Not for the plant, but for access to the plant. Access that could have taken a different route - but I digress. Toyota is now coming to Mississippi. Where did the state get the money to clear the land that they in turn gave to Toyota? From the money the Federal government sent to Mississippi to help with the Gulf Coast recovery. I'll let you all see how close the Tupelo region is to the Gulf Coast. My point? There has already been government intervention to help the industry.
  • munchkinmunchkin Curl Connoisseur Posts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    A lot of people want to call this a bridge loan that will be paid back. We hope it will be paid back, but there are no guarantees that this can be fixed.

    I see it as an investment in these companies, and when someone makes that big of an investment they usually have a say in how things are done. Seems to me the Big 3 expect us to hand over the money with no say.

    I agree that Unions had their time and place. That day is gone. The following paragraph is so true:

    "Although, I agree with the statements made that letting the big 3 fail will definitely affect a lot of hard working Americans, I also agree with this statement. Sure, the Big 3 have made some poor financial decisions but there was a time when unions were needed because of employer abuse and bullying, now it seem like the Unions are the ones that are the bullies. It's like "either meet our demands, or else". They have a lot of these companies by the "you-know-whats"."

    The unions do come across as the bullies anymore. I also cannot believe anyone wants the bill to pass that would take away secret union voting. Just what I would want. . . the union seeing me vote against them. Talk about being afraid. I would be much more afraid of them than management.
    3b/c
  • misspammisspam Posts: 5,318Registered Users
    munchkin, I couldn't agree more with all of your posts so far. Here's a very interesting article if anyone is interested:

    http://www.howestreet.com/articles/index.php?article_id=8120

    Here's an excerpt that says alot:

    "A farmer with one modern wheat combine can do the job of a thousand 18th century farm hands. That is a lot of unemployed farm workers, yet nobody demands to return to those good old days. Productivity and efficiency do result in job losses and dislocation, but eventually progress creates new jobs and additional wealth.

    Whether a Honda, GM, Toyota, Ford, Hyundai, or VW, currently each and every car still requires one engine and four wheels. Each manufacturer uses basically the same domestic and overseas suppliers, and each has dealers selling its cars (most dealers represent a broad spectrum of brands and will sell whatever car the market wants). The argument that GM closing its doors would result in the loss of 2 million jobs or more is ludicrous as the competitors that pick up the slack will hire workers and buy more from their suppliers. While that may not be good for Detroit, it may be good for the Carolinas or Tennessee.

    Simply, business shifting from certain players in the industry to others is called competition. Capitalism and competition are the forces that have made the U.S. the most successful economy for many decades. Granted, it is a harsh reality, but it works, and so far no other system has come even close to creating as much wealth for most of its agents."
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  • LoloDSMLoloDSM Posts: 3,778Registered Users
    starg2008 wrote: »
    Myradella3 wrote: »
    I have mixed feelings. I think that in a market driven society, if you build a product that people don't buy, then you go out of business. But I live in a state with three UAW plants so I want the bailout so that I can keep my job.

    I think the UAW contract has to be reopened.

    Me and you are in the same boat. The governor of iowa has said if they fail 35,000 people here will lose their jobs. I work in a UAW plant also, so does my husband. What will happen to us? we have a little one, crime here is getting out of control. even churches are not exempt from the crime. Renegotiations are months away, will we make it until then?

    Sorry to guano, but Starg, where are you in Iowa? I live in DSM. :)

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  • munchkinmunchkin Curl Connoisseur Posts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    misspam, Great article!

    The excerpt you printed made a fantastic point. In fact, the whole article hit the nail on the head.
    3b/c
  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    From the Clarion-Ledger, Mississippi (whose two senators voted against the loan to the American automakers):


    Slumping automobile sales in the U.S. has forced Toyota again to delay - this time indefinitely - the opening of its $1.3 billion assembly plant in Blue Springs.

    It's the second delay the company has announced for the plant that will create more than 2,000 jobs and produce the Prius hybrid.

    The opening was pushed back this summer when Toyota switched from the plant's original vehicle - the Highlander SUV.
    Toyota's move also delays the startups of suppliers, who are expected to create an additional 2,000 jobs.

    ........

    The state has $200 million invested in the plant and local governments have $35 million invested.


    From me - I have major problems with the UAW. I think that the companies have been mismanaged. Fine. Just don't act like there's been no government support or intervention before.
  • MarMar Curl Neophyte Posts: 3,004Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    It never fails to amaze me how much hatred there is for the UAW.
    "what's so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding?"



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  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Curl Connoisseur Posts: 31,259Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Mar wrote: »
    It never fails to amaze me how much hatred there is for the UAW.


    It's pure jealousy. Jealousy of a field where one can still earn a living wage without having a college degree.

    There used to be lots of manufacturing jobs like that in our country. But they all got shipped overseas during the 70's, 80's and 90's. Now you can only earn just above minimum wage in manufacturing...if you can even find a job that isn't retail.

    It's our government's fault that all our manufacturing is gone. They taxed businesses til they were forced to look for affordable staff elsewhere and made it cost prohibitive to meet OSHA and EPA standards. They didn't close the loopholes of giant earning individuals so that greed took over and the gap between staff and management grew to epic proportions. They encouraged crap companies like Wal-Mart and pharmacy chains to grow to giant size and push out small business.

    These are huge long-standing problems that won't be fixed by infusing cash stimulus packages into the economy or making UAW employees as poor as everyone else. We need our manufacturing back. We need our entire middle class to be able to earn a decent living again. We have to stop the super-rich from feeding off the middle class...because there's nothing left.

    People who think that UAW employees' and retirees' salaries/pensions/benefits are the problem are just plain ignorant.
  • StephSStephS Posts: 352Registered Users
    Sing on, sista!
  • MarMar Curl Neophyte Posts: 3,004Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Yeah...I agree.
    Of course,I am a bit biased,as we are a strong Union family :)
    "what's so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding?"



    "If you judge people,you have no time to love them"
    -Mother Theresa
  • A_la_Nap-turalA_la_Nap-tural Posts: 409Registered Users
    RCW: Although I'm not a fan of how Wal-Mart runs their corporation or treats their employees, I'm from Arkansas and I love me some wally-world! Roll those prices back baby and allow me to buy motor oil, spackling paste and deodorant in one stop! You can't beat that with a stick!

    On a more serious note, what do you think about Obama's tax plan for business versus Bush's loophole heaven? Do you think it will force more business overseas? Do you think we'll be bought out by China? My aunt keeps saying that, she says China is just waiting to jump at the chance.
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  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Curl Connoisseur Posts: 31,259Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    On a more serious note, what do you think about Obama's tax plan for business versus Bush's loophole heaven? Do you think it will force more business overseas? Do you think we'll be bought out by China? My aunt keeps saying that, she says China is just waiting to jump at the chance.


    What is his plan? Do you know it? I don't.
  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    People who think that UAW employees' and retirees' salaries/pensions/benefits are the problem are just plain ignorant.

    The job bank is indefensible. Sit around the union hall watching TV and get 85% of your pay? For how long? Let's see, in the latest contract the max is 2 years. Before that it was, 4 years. Before that, was there a limit?
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Curl Connoisseur Posts: 31,259Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Myradella3 wrote: »
    People who think that UAW employees' and retirees' salaries/pensions/benefits are the problem are just plain ignorant.

    The job bank is indefensible. Sit around the union hall watching TV and get 85% of your pay? For how long? Let's see, in the latest contract the max is 2 years. Before that it was, 4 years. Before that, was there a limit?



    That is a particular quirk that unions have created, and it's wrong. NYC public school teachers have a similar program, except they get 100% of their pay, and there's no limit. Some of them have been sitting and watching TV for many years, and that's paid for directly with taxpayer money. It's not like we can skip paying it by just not buying a car. Where is the outrage about that one?
  • Myradella3Myradella3 Posts: 2,481Registered Users
    The United Federation of Teachers in New York City is one of the most power hungry, selfish, ourtrageous and any other negative adjective you can think of selfish institutions in the country. I didn't know about that particular policy but it's just as wrong as the UAW's job bank and should be eliminated.

    ETA: Where's the outrage? When the Board or the state (whoever funds the NYC schools) asks for a bailout, I hope it comes up. But the current focus is the auto industry thus the UAW.
  • A_la_Nap-turalA_la_Nap-tural Posts: 409Registered Users
    What is his plan? Do you know it? I don't.

    I think it was something like closing those tax loopholes on revenue earned overseas.... Here it is....
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    event.png


  • munchkinmunchkin Curl Connoisseur Posts: 2,909Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Mar wrote: »
    Yeah...I agree.
    Of course,I am a bit biased,as we are a strong Union family :)

    Mar, I am curious. Why does the UAW feel they are above having to take cuts and make concessions when a large portion of the country has already had to to this? I am only against my tax dollars going to pay for benefits that many Americans themselves do not have. You want to take their money to pay for something they don't get but you won't give up. Doesn't make sense to me.
    3b/c

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