Thursday, November 20

Let them eat oil.

So people are most likely familiar with the plight of the big three. I don't mind the government helping them out, but clearly it must come with some conditions. Now before they gave any money to the financial sector the government insisted on limiting the pay of top executives, presumably because they were at fault for the problems. Certainly if we believe that the problems existed and could have been made much worse if not for the brilliant work of the top executives, there would be no need to limit their pay. Well in the case of the car companies it's clear that the fault rests with the Union. The workers kept demanding more and more money and eventually drove their employers out of business. People are saying left and right that we can't let the automakers go bankrupt because we'll lose so many good jobs. You know why they are good jobs, because they are being paid too much. One article claimed that they are paid 30 dollars an hour more than their japanese or european counterparts. another said that they have to pay 2,000 more into pension funds per car than foreign automakers. My father told me (i don't where he got these figures) that when pensions etc. is figured in they pay 73 dollars and hour for employees (it was my understand that applied to factory employees) meanwhile toyota has plants in the US and they pay only 48. That's not a small difference. So clearly if it is the pension and the greediness of the workers that is to blame than penions/salaries/benefits of workers needs to be the first thing that is cut in any bailout. GM said they needed money because they are burning through 5 billion a month. How is a 25 billion dollar package going to help if GM alone is burning through 25 billion a month. The government is going to end up paying the union workers with tax payer money, which will then be donated to the campaigns of democrats who will insist on more payments to the automakers so the money can keep going to the unions.

My father also told me the story of someone representing the union who claimed that their workers needed to be paid well because of their high skill level. In fact they were so skilled they could (and did) do their job drunk. They would go out to a bar for lunch have several beers, come back to work, and finish their shifts. So for work that could be done by a drunk person the companies are required to spend $73 and hour. No wonder they need help. I say let the big 3 go bankrupt. Then let's see how the workers feel about their Union. There was a meatpacking plant in a small town someplace (i forget) and some of the workers complained about not being paid extra for working overtime/unsafe working conditions. There were a bunch of fines levied against the plant, and now it's going to go under. In a small town, it provided the jobs for everybody. Now it's gone. Should people have to work in less than safe conditions, no, should they be paid extra for overtime work if that's what the law says, yes, but that's not always how the world works. I think most of the people who worked at that plant would rather have a crummy job than no job right about now. That entire town is going to die now. And the people working for the car campanies would probably be willing to take a pay cut to keep the company from going under, but their union won't ever let them, beside which it is probably too late anyway. Let them go out of business, and maybe some other industries will learn from their lesson.


Blogger Aras said...

I agree. The best article I read about it is here: Let Detroit Go Bankrupt, By MITT ROMNEY

I broke my boycott of nyt so that Romney's piece would get more hits.

3:01 AM  
Blogger Trashcan said...

Indeed i read that same article. I did not support romney in the primaries, but reading that certainly increased my respect for him. but given that there are so many articles on the subject opted not to link to a single one.

1:54 AM  

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