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So, when will Obama order the head of the UAW union to quit his job?

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by Little-Acorn, Mar 31, 2009.

  1. Little-Acorn

    Little-Acorn Well-Known Member

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    President Obama recently assumed the power to direct the hiring and firing of personnel in private companies (a power formerly held only by Kings and dictators, and maybe still is), and used it to fire the CEO of General Motors. He seemed to feel that the CEO's actions were at least partly to blame for the automaker's poor financial state.

    If that's the case, then we can certainly expect more firings in the private sector soon by the President. and the number-one target must inevitably be the head of the union that brought GM down.

    Unions were first started for good and necessary reasons. Company heads had been getting together and holding down wages artificially for years in the early part of the last century, presenting workers with a choice of pitifully low wages or none. Finally the workers got together in return and began presenting the companies with a similar choice: Decent wages or no labor at all. Some company heads responded with violence and coercion, and some union peoiple bled and died before companies finally started to yield. It was the only remedy the workers had available to them, and they used it to redress many wrongs.

    After the violence and bloodletting were mostly through, the U.S. Congress then stepped in and made unions mostly unnecessary by passing various "Labor laws", guaranteeing maximum length work weeks, minimum wages, decent working conditions, etc., all things that the unions had fought and bled for. Would have been nice if the Congress had acted a little sooner, much of the violence and bloodshed could have been avoided. But it was not to be, and the unions suffered, only to have Congress codify later what they had obtained in blood earlier.

    Since that time, as mentioned, unions became mostly useless, as companies offered better wages and working conditions (some forced by law, some voluntarily, see Henry Ford, Andrew Carnegie etc.) Yet the unions hung on, longing for their glory days and pretending the workers were still suffering, ignoring the fact that there was a new sheriff in town (State and Federal lawmakers). Union membership has shrunken steadily as Federally-mandated wages and working conditions improved, until it was a small fraction of what it once was.

    But unions have remained in a few industries, noteably the auto industry. And they have kept the stranglehold they had on management that had once allowed them to make much-needed gains for their workers in past generations. And this despite the fact that the workers now enjoy wages and working conditions the original unions could only dream of.

    And unions have continued to use that stranglehold to get even more and more for their workers (and for themselves, today's union bosses have perks the old-time bosses also could only dream of), far beyond any "equitable" settlements they once asked for. Now, due to union threats of strikes, workers who work only a relatively short time can get full retirement benefits for life after they leave, full medical coverage for life, etc., while worker still on the assembly lines get wages more than twice as high as the mild difficulty and low stress of most of their jobs merits.

    And since companies like GM don't have a money tree, those high payments must come either from raising the prices of the cars they're trying to sell, or skimping on quality, or from borrowing. All three things are being done, with the result that GM cars and trucks break down more on average than others, while costing as much or more... all while the company's debt soars. For many periods in recent years, GM was losing $5,000 for every car they sold... and they sold hundreds of thousands such cars.

    The UAW has been raping the auto companies for many years, extorting payments they no longer deserve simply because they can. Now the President of the United States has assumed the power to control personnel decisions in private companies. And he seems to be intent on rooting out those who led the auto companies (and others, this is just a start) to the ruinous state they presently face. It is inevitable that the next people to be targets, must be the union bosses, starting with the guy at the top as he did with GM itself. The unions have been fatly enriching themselves, far beyond anything they or their workers deserve, for years and even decades, long after the genuine grievances they fought for long ago, were settled in their favor.

    So, when can we expect the head of the UAW to be fired by President Obama? It is certainly the most relevant task on his list, now that he seems to intend to cut out the unnecessarily high payments and expenses that have recently destroyed so many big companies.
     
  2. Pidgey

    Pidgey Well-Known Member

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    Now, now... don't worry! Once Protectionism settles in for the long haul, the Unions will be crucifying their own when standards-of-living nosedive even worse than they currently are.
     
  3. laymen

    laymen New Member

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    In four or five years will Ford have grounds for suing on the basis of an uneven playing field?

    If G.M. and Chrysler go under will their customers just not buy cars?

    If some of the banks go under will their customers just not seek new loans elsewhere?

    This seems like pretty rudimentary stuff to me.
     
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