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Discussion Starter #1
Guys, I've got to speak my piece here...

I'm really getting upset. Not with GM, but the unions. I have family that works for companies in unions
(United Airlines) and I have friends who work (or did work) for General Motors as engineers. I am becoming
increasingly frustrated with how the unions are affecting this country. When unions were first created, they
were a necessary element in the machine. The big corporations were taking advantage, paying employees as little
as they wanted because there were tons of people waiting in line to take the job if you felt the pay was too
little.

But now, it's gone WELL past the median point of what is fair. Unions are now at the point where they are
extorting money from General Motors. It's no wonder that GM is struggling to close plants and open up new
ones in Mexico and Canada. It's no wonder that GM religiously tries to replace their employees with machines.

If you owned a company, and your employee extorted money from you, wouldn't you want to get rid of him
as soon as possible? Fortunately for Honda, BMW, Toyota, etc.. and all the other new import manufacturers...
they've seen what these kinds of unions have done to their competitors, so they're all building plants
in RIGHT-TO-WORK states.

Do you guys have any idea what kind of benefits union workers at GM get?

For starters, they pay absolutely NOTHING for health care. They get the BEST health care that money can buy
and they don't pay a penny into it.

Secondly, factory workers get an extremely higher than average pay for what they do. The average beginning
factory worker makes anywhere from 30-35 dollars an hour. I'm a computer programmer. I don't mean this as
an insult to anyone, but ANYONE with a good constitution can be a factory worker. It takes skill and a lot
of training to become a good programmer. And only GOOD programmers make decent money.

Why is it that union workers can legally extort money and benefits from their company, but if "I" want
anything close to what they make, I have to work twice as hard as I do? (which I don't mind because I have
ambition).

It's no wonder that General Motors is losing money hand over fist.

I really like GM... and it seems like GM's working class is driving them into the ground. Hah.. working
class... thats a farce... I work a hell of a lot more hours, with a lot more stress than they do, and
I don't get anywhere near the vacations that they do.


Did you know that the average factory worker makes the same or more money than the average GM engineer?

It's not that I'm jealous of them, because I'm really not... I'm just trying to emphesize the ridiculousness
of what the Union of Auto Workers have done to General Motors.

Do you guys know what factory workers get once a year? Every year, GM has a "time off" period where
they retool their factories and get ready for the next model year. Nearly 3/4ths of GM employees get to take
months off at a time. And do you know what? They get paid their FULL salary during this period of time.

Does that make any sense to you?


This article I saw on MSN was the last straw for me:

http://news.moneycentral.msn.com/provider/providerarticle.asp?Feed=OBR&Date=20050615&ID=4895274


At this point, I would PROUDLY buy a GM car that was made in Mexico. At least in impoverished
countries, they appreciate the opportunity to work.

In addition to that, if you work for GM, you are FORCED to pay Union Fees... EVEN if you don't want
to be apart of the union. AND!!! Lets say the union goes on strike and you still wanted to work...
the union organizes groups of people who block the enterances from anyone getting inside.

Unions are businesses.... and they are in the business of making money. ULTIMATELY... the Union's
most important and biggest concern is making sure that they make money. After that... the union
worker's interests.

What right does a union have to FORCE people to pay them money? Last I checked, the union wasn't
a state or federal agency... so what right do they have to automatically deduct pay from your
paycheck?



The one thing that would change ALL of this... it would single handedly change the way unions operate
for the betterment of both the company and the employees... is if unions were NOT FOR PROFIT.
There do not exist any NOT FOR PROFIT unions.

I think the house needs to propose a law that forces Unions to become NOT FOR PROFIT. Bush, or
whoever becomes the next president should pass this law after the senate approves it.


I would really like to hear from anyone who disagrees with my logic...


Anyone that wants a perfect example of how screwed up unions are, take a good look at UTD.
United Teachers of Dade. (Dade County, Florda teachers union). The founder of UTD was
busted for taking union worker's money and buying lavish yahts and expensive automobiles.

My mom works for United Airlines (they've been planning a strike on the 17th of June), and one
of my wife's best friends was an engineer in Pontiac Michigan for Cadillac. (reverse engineer)




Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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82-T/A said:
Guys, I've got to speak my piece here...


I would really like to hear from anyone who disagrees with my logic...


hey mods! don't you think you should be posting in 'general off topic'? i think idealogical bombast belongs in there. we are her to share information about the solstice.
you obviously are looking for a flame war. (edit for addition)
but while i'm thinking about it.. i just read and article in my daily newspaper ( philadelphia enquirer) about a possible plant closing and the guy who was going to possibly lose his $20 (not $35) an hour job on the line. GM does have serious problems meeting it's obligations to it's union workers, but that is because it employed many workers in years past and as market share decreased continued to be obligated to pay for retirement and health care benefits. If GM had funded those benefits in a timely manner ( there is a time/value aspect to investment) they wouldn't have to be looking for the money today.
as for recieving a living wage while the factory is being retooled, that is the price you pay for retaining skilled workers. these people are not digging trenches, they are assembling complex machines with quality results (J.D.Powers) that are among the best in the industry. that is an investment, not an expense.
personally, i've always felt that national healthcare would be more efficient, less expensive and would level the playing field for industry - thus pro competitive. let's not blame the workers or the unions that represent them for systemic shortcomings, demographic trends or shortsighted priorities of corporate officers.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No, I'm not looking for a flame war.

My MAIN point (which I didn't emphesize) was that this could end up delaying the release of the solstice even more. (referencing the article I attached).

I'm just REALLY REALLY upset about this.


This has nothing to do with Politics... Democrats VS Republicans or Republicans VS Democrats....

This has to do with GM seriously tanking... and delaying the production of the Solstice even more. If you read the article, it says that the UAW (Union of Auto Workers) is planning a strike. A strike is the LAST thing that GM needs.

Because not only would this halt production temporarily for GM vehicles everywhere... but they'd also be getting paid for the time that they striked as well...




Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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I agree, especially about the health care costs. I am a federal employee, and I pay a portion of the health care premiums for my health care. I don't think it is unreasonable to expect the Auto Workers to pay a percentage of their insurance premiums, and to continue paying a percentage in order to retain that coverage into retirement.

The Union needs to realize that they are doing their members a disservice, pushing GM so far that the company may need to resort to laying off employees in order to stay afloat.
 

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My Turn

You may want to recheck your facts on GM worker benefits and the union workers. These workers are knowledgable and dedicated. GM has provided many hours of training to the point that a few of the educated engineers turn to them for help and advice. They aren't insulted to ask for help nor are they threatened by the hourly work force. These people work as a team. Now if you truly want to save money you may want to check the non-union wages and benefits that everyone keeps averaging into the figures that are posted publicly (i.e.engineers, administrators and such). When my family goes to the doctor I get to write a check for the office visit, Many of my friends in other jobs get this free. So Please check your facts before you insult a large portion of the population that keeps this country flowing. I'm not complaining about my job or benefits, I consider myself very fortunate. But for the record I hope all those nice people in the less fortunate countries hire you to program their computers.
 

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Stop Generalizing about Workers!

They make more than $20 per hour typically, at least around Michigan. Many are good workers. Many are bad workers that abuse the system. No one can generalize about a huge population of workers.

The facts are the facts, and the UAW is something that is killing GM. 82TA is absolutely correct when he says that Toyota, BMW, Honda, etc. are in states without the UAW. Unfortunately for GM, they are LOCKED into the UAW contracts indefinitely.

3 things dragging GM down (and there are others):

UAW
Legacy costs (paying pensions, healthcare, etc to retirees)
Poor management (compared to Toyota, GM is highly inefficient)
 

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82-T/A said:
Guys, I've got to speak my piece here...

I'm really getting upset. Not with GM, but the unions. I have family that works for companies in unions
(United Airlines) and I have friends who work (or did work) for General Motors as engineers. I am becoming
increasingly frustrated with how the unions are affecting this country. When unions were first created, they
were a necessary element in the machine. The big corporations were taking advantage, paying employees as little
as they wanted because there were tons of people waiting in line to take the job if you felt the pay was too
little.

But now, it's gone WELL past the median point of what is fair. Unions are now at the point where they are
extorting money from General Motors. It's no wonder that GM is struggling to close plants and open up new
ones in Mexico and Canada. It's no wonder that GM religiously tries to replace their employees with machines.

If you owned a company, and your employee extorted money from you, wouldn't you want to get rid of him
as soon as possible? Fortunately for Honda, BMW, Toyota, etc.. and all the other new import manufacturers...
they've seen what these kinds of unions have done to their competitors, so they're all building plants
in RIGHT-TO-WORK states.

Do you guys have any idea what kind of benefits union workers at GM get?

For starters, they pay absolutely NOTHING for health care. They get the BEST health care that money can buy
and they don't pay a penny into it.

Secondly, factory workers get an extremely higher than average pay for what they do. The average beginning
factory worker makes anywhere from 30-35 dollars an hour. I'm a computer programmer. I don't mean this as
an insult to anyone, but ANYONE with a good constitution can be a factory worker. It takes skill and a lot
of training to become a good programmer. And only GOOD programmers make decent money.

Why is it that union workers can legally extort money and benefits from their company, but if "I" want
anything close to what they make, I have to work twice as hard as I do? (which I don't mind because I have
ambition).

It's no wonder that General Motors is losing money hand over fist.

I really like GM... and it seems like GM's working class is driving them into the ground. Hah.. working
class... thats a farce... I work a hell of a lot more hours, with a lot more stress than they do, and
I don't get anywhere near the vacations that they do.


Did you know that the average factory worker makes the same or more money than the average GM engineer?

It's not that I'm jealous of them, because I'm really not... I'm just trying to emphesize the ridiculousness
of what the Union of Auto Workers have done to General Motors.

Do you guys know what factory workers get once a year? Every year, GM has a "time off" period where
they retool their factories and get ready for the next model year. Nearly 3/4ths of GM employees get to take
months off at a time. And do you know what? They get paid their FULL salary during this period of time.

Does that make any sense to you?


This article I saw on MSN was the last straw for me:

http://news.moneycentral.msn.com/provider/providerarticle.asp?Feed=OBR&Date=20050615&ID=4895274


At this point, I would PROUDLY buy a GM car that was made in Mexico. At least in impoverished
countries, they appreciate the opportunity to work.

In addition to that, if you work for GM, you are FORCED to pay Union Fees... EVEN if you don't want
to be apart of the union. AND!!! Lets say the union goes on strike and you still wanted to work...
the union organizes groups of people who block the enterances from anyone getting inside.

Unions are businesses.... and they are in the business of making money. ULTIMATELY... the Union's
most important and biggest concern is making sure that they make money. After that... the union
worker's interests.

What right does a union have to FORCE people to pay them money? Last I checked, the union wasn't
a state or federal agency... so what right do they have to automatically deduct pay from your
paycheck?



The one thing that would change ALL of this... it would single handedly change the way unions operate
for the betterment of both the company and the employees... is if unions were NOT FOR PROFIT.
There do not exist any NOT FOR PROFIT unions.

I think the house needs to propose a law that forces Unions to become NOT FOR PROFIT. Bush, or
whoever becomes the next president should pass this law after the senate approves it.


I would really like to hear from anyone who disagrees with my logic...


Anyone that wants a perfect example of how screwed up unions are, take a good look at UTD.
United Teachers of Dade. (Dade County, Florda teachers union). The founder of UTD was
busted for taking union worker's money and buying lavish yahts and expensive automobiles.

My mom works for United Airlines (they've been planning a strike on the 17th of June), and one
of my wife's best friends was an engineer in Pontiac Michigan for Cadillac. (reverse engineer)




Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter


Now just a minute. Are you saying that if your boss came to you and offered you and your co-workers free health benefits and a substantial raise, that you would turn them down for the good of the company?

I don't think I've ever seen a starving GM executive, or for that matter an exec in any corporation who didn't have substantially more than a common union worker.

I think you should just re-read your statement and look at it from the other guy's perspective. Making money is the American way. If you can, you will.

Few people are insightful enough to see any repercussions down the road that might eliminate their jobs, so they grab what they can. As Huey Lewis so aptly put it, "Livin' and a workin', workin' and a livin'. I'm takin' what they're givin' cause I'm working for a livin'."
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If General Motors goes out of business, and EVERYONE loses their job...

What will the unions say?

"We won the fight!"

"It wasn't our fault! It was bad management."


How great will the Union be then to all those thousands of unemployed factory workers?

GM sells more cars than any other company in the world. That is a fact.
GM has to cut corners everywhere to curb the costs of paying these extraordinary employee fees.

Toyota and Honda don't have to deal with this....

The ONLY way to make Unions fair for everyone... is to eliminate the profit making. People who support unions seem to ignore this major fact, a UNION is also a business. They make money from their employees. The more money the employees make, the more they can jack up their fees and the more money the investors to the Union make.

If we could eliminate that... and make these Unions not for profit... it would almost complete end this extortion... everyone would be happy... even the factory workers.. because their fees would be substantially less.

The problem is, Unions make a LOT of money... and they have many lobbysts which go to both the local and federal governments to keep their establishments in place.


It's a real shame... because it's because of Unions that Europe is doing so horribly.... and the same thing is going to happen to the United States.

I really really do not want to see General Motors fail...


Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Blk37Special said:
Now just a minute. Are you saying that if your boss came to you and offered you and your co-workers free health benefits and a substantial raise, that you would turn them down for the good of the company?

I don't think I've ever seen a starving GM executive, or for that matter an exec in any corporation who didn't have substantially more than a common union worker.

I think you should just re-read your statement and look at it from the other guy's perspective. Making money is the American way. If you can, you will.

Few people are insightful enough to see any repercussions down the road that might eliminate their jobs, so they grab what they can. As Huey Lewis so aptly put it, "Livin' and a workin', workin' and a livin'. I'm takin' what they're givin' cause I'm working for a livin'."

I think YOU need to realize what you're saying...

Why does it matter if a GM exceutive has substatially more than a common union worker? I have nothing against a union worker.... although you seem to call them common, so I guess you're one of those people who believes in the term.. "The little people". I for one will not be called one of the "little people". I work just as hard as anyone else does, or is capable of. If I don't like where I'm at in my career.. what do I do? Bitch and complain that I need more money for the work I do? No... I've NEVER asked for a raise in my life. You know what I do? I work my ass off, and if need be, I change jobs.

I'm not oblivious to the fact that I may have had opportunities that others might not have. I had a computer when I was 7 years old.. and because of that, I'm a computer programmer now. But that doesn't mean someone who wasn't raised with a computer in their house can't become a good programmer? Everyone has different skills.

Your logic basically says, people are unable to achieve higher standards than what they were basically raised with. That's complete and total crap. If that was true, we'd all be poor.


Making money IS NOT the American way.... working your a$$ off, and making a living for yourself is the American way. NOT extorting money from your boss.

If I get a raise, or I get benefits from my company, it's because they give them to me because they think I'm worth it. NOT because I've demanded it by threatening to walk off the job.

We both CLEARLY have different perceptions of reality. JUST because an executive at GM has tons of money and is making it rich, what makes you someone think the Union worker automatically deserves this treatment as well? What has the Union worker done that deserves him the same position, money, and status as the executive? You're assuming that the executive hasn't worked any harder than the Union worker... some of the greatest engineers of our time have come from MUCH more humble beginnings than your "common" union worker. That's insulting as hell too.. I sure as hell would never want to refer to myself as "common" I have far too much self esteem.

The union workers really need to take a hard look at what's happening... they're not starving, poor, or down trodden. They make ridiculous sums of money. They make significantly more money than most white collar employees do at other companies.


Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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Delta Airlines employees are taking pay cuts to keep the company alive.

This is turning into a flame war and it should not be one.

Set aside your biases and look at facts: UAW is helping to kill GM and other companies do not have that issue. UAW is helping employees by offering extraordinary (by factory worker standards) pay and benefits. UAW is currently not functioning in the way it was originally intended. UAW and GM have an adverserial relationship, when they should work as a team with COMPROMISE.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I want you guys to seriously take a look at this.

THIS is what the UAW spends their money on.

THIS money comes from the Union Workers paychecks which they have no control over.




Do you guys know what this is a picture of?

This is a picture of part of the green of a golf course that is owned and built by the UAW. What the hell... and I'm serious now... what the hell is a "common" (there's that self esteem building term again) Union Worker going to do at a golf course.

Only the most aristocratic of our society actually bothers to play golf.

The leaders of the UAW are complaining about the CEO of GM's salary... while they sit on this golf course, playing golf, and drinking Gin & Tonics... that the Union Worker's hard earned money paid for...

And what's worse... they don't even get to use it... they still have to pay a greens fee.

I'm baffled that the Union Workers are so drastically in the dark about this?

I would be furious if the money being "STOLEN" from me on my paychecks by a NON government agency... was being used to buy a golf course for people who were extorting money from the company I work for. This is one screwed up "FAMILY".


Here's the link to the main UAW Black Lake golf course...

http://www.uawgolf.com/


Oh, and I'd just like to share this page with you guys too..

http://www.uawgolf.com/rates.html

OH LOOK! The Union Workers get a 20% discount on the $80 dollar green fees!


Oh, those POOR POOR UAW leaders.... they're working soo hard for the "common" man...

I can see that...




Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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I dont get why you are mad.

I totally agree that unions cause more harm than good at present day. But thats GM's problem. They can't raise the price of their cars or lower the quality to cover union costs because there is too much competition. So as a consumer, I still get what I pay for.

The people in the Unions should be worried about what their leaders are doing because if they are extorting the company, the company will do what is economically best. In GM's case, that would seem to be build factories in Mexico or Canada. Hence, those people will all lose their jobs for being short sighted.

I like the fact that GM pays their health care. I think more companies should jump on that band wagon. I like it because companies can normally get health care insurance for an individual at a lower cost than that individual could find for themselves. I also think that wages should lower to represent the higher quality benefits.

Just my thoughts.

- :willy:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
pschaars951 said:
I dont get why you are mad.

I totally agree that unions cause more harm than good at present day. But thats GM's problem. They can't raise the price of their cars or lower the quality to cover union costs because there is too much competition. So as a consumer, I still get what I pay for.

The people in the Unions should be worried about what their leaders are doing because if they are extorting the company, the company will do what is economically best. In GM's case, that would seem to be build factories in Mexico or Canada. Hence, those people will all lose their jobs for being short sighted.

I like the fact that GM pays their health care. I think more companies should jump on that band wagon. I like it because companies can normally get health care insurance for an individual at a lower cost than that individual could find for themselves. I also think that wages should lower to represent the higher quality benefits.

Just my thoughts.

- :willy:

You want to know why I'm mad? Because I'm a HUGE car buff, and eat, sleep, and drink while thinking about cars. When I'm going to the bathroom... I think about cars. I honestly think more about cars than I do breasts. The only time I don't think about cars is when I'm intimate with my wife.. and even then, a thought might pop into my head.

General Motors is the epitomy of American greatness, there are few large companies left in the world that represent this country for what it really is.
General Motors DOES represent America... it's an icon of our success and our footprint in history. And... it would really REALLY kill me to see a company with almost 100 years of history, go down the tubes because of the Union.

I'm not so concerned about myself... I know that eventually I'll get a Solstice. Or whatever the hell else I want so long as I work hard enough and save up for it. I just want the legacy that is GM.. to be around when I have kids...
I want my kids to be able to pass down all my cars (not that any one of them is so great...) to my kids and have them recognize that these cars represented a piece of history in America.

Maybe I'm just being too dramatic... I dunno... but I see General Motors as more than just simply a company that makes products.


Anyway, with respect to health care... what health insurance company do have?

I've been laid off 3 times in my short career life. Have you ever had to pay Cobra? I recently left a company because I didn't like what was happening there. (First time I actually quit rather than got laid off). At my new company, I didn't get health insurance until I passed the 90 day probationary period (they do that for all new employees).

When I was working at my previous company, I was paying $30 bucks a paycheck, so about $60 bucks a month. Thankfully, I have no preexisting conditions, I don't smoke, I'm as healthy as an ox. When I had to get COBRA (it's the plan where you can continue your health care plan after you leave)... they make you pay exactly everything that your company was paying, plus the money YOU paid out of your paycheck.

Take a guess how much they wanted per month for healthcare? It was OVER $500 bucks... (my wife is on her own health insurance at her company).

Talk to any HR person at any company... I can assure you that a company does not get a significantly better rate than what someone would get by themselves.


Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter
 

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82-T/A said:
You want to know why I'm mad? Because I'm a HUGE car buff, and eat, sleep, and drink while thinking about cars. When I'm going to the bathroom... I think about cars. I honestly think more about cars than I do breasts. The only time I don't think about cars is when I'm intimate with my wife.. and even then, a thought might pop into my head.

General Motors is the epitomy of American greatness, there are few large companies left in the world that represent this country for what it really is.
General Motors DOES represent America... it's an icon of our success and our footprint in history. And... it would really REALLY kill me to see a company with almost 100 years of history, go down the tubes because of the Union.

I'm not so concerned about myself... I know that eventually I'll get a Solstice. Or whatever the hell else I want so long as I work hard enough and save up for it. I just want the legacy that is GM.. to be around when I have kids...
I want my kids to be able to pass down all my cars (not that any one of them is so great...) to my kids and have them recognize that these cars represented a piece of history in America.

Maybe I'm just being too dramatic... I dunno... but I see General Motors as more than just simply a company that makes products.


Anyway, with respect to health care... what health insurance company do have?

I've been laid off 3 times in my short career life. Have you ever had to pay Cobra? I recently left a company because I didn't like what was happening there. (First time I actually quit rather than got laid off). At my new company, I didn't get health insurance until I passed the 90 day probationary period (they do that for all new employees).

When I was working at my previous company, I was paying $30 bucks a paycheck, so about $60 bucks a month. Thankfully, I have no preexisting conditions, I don't smoke, I'm as healthy as an ox. When I had to get COBRA (it's the plan where you can continue your health care plan after you leave)... they make you pay exactly everything that your company was paying, plus the money YOU paid out of your paycheck.

Take a guess how much they wanted per month for healthcare? It was OVER $500 bucks... (my wife is on her own health insurance at her company).

Talk to any HR person at any company... I can assure you that a company does not get a significantly better rate than what someone would get by themselves.


Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order!)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter

Very enlightening. I think we need to talk again sometime. Let's get together in 20 years and see if our ideas have changed. :yawn:
 

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I don't know who pee'd in 82-T/A's Wheaties this afternoon.... (or why I'm joining this rant :willy: )

Despite your rather scatter presentation, your basic points are correct. I'm an engineer and have worked in a number of Union plants (auto and non-auto) - I was even a Teamster Union Steward for a while (only to keep them bastartds from taking 2-1/2% of my already part-time pay each month :brentil: ).

We could have an endless (and ultimately pointless :yawn: ) argument on who's at fault for the current state of manufacturing in America. Take for instance health-care, if the government hadn't frozen wages during WWII, and allowed business to offer healthcare as a way to get around the wage freeze, we would have all been alot more responsible about rising healthcare costs because it would have affected more of us, more directly... but that won't reduce my premiums today!

Today's unions are every bit as short-sighted as any corporate management team. For two decades, current union members have been selling-out their newest members (and slitting their own kid's throats) with two-tiered contracts and onerous work restrictions (such as the 95% pay when a plant is closed) that make it too expensive to add new workers.

The problem with the European economy isn't that their workers are stupid, lazy and smell bad - all that is beside the point ;) . Its that you can't afford to hire a worker - if you can't afford to get rid of him (if the plant isn't profitable). Companies like GM are scared to death of the long-term costs of new workers if they can't reduce head-count when times are bad. While the UAW isn't alone in this practice, it has certainly led the way.

My wife is a new teacher and in their recently passed contract, teachers with 12+ years got a 2% across the board raise, while those with less than 12 years got NOTHING! This is even more appalling it if you know how teacher contracts are structured. Unlike the UAW where everyone gets the same pay - regardless of your skill, teacher pay is all about years of service - regardless of your skill. Senior teachers routinely make DOUBLE what new teachers make (and have to deal with a lot less crap).

Nothing sounds as hollow or hypocritical as the a Union member decrying the short-sighted actions of business. As 82-T/A states, American unions are nothing but another business - big, corrupt, money-grubing businesses at that.
 

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It boils down to this... we all love and appreciate the GM employees, (many of my family are GM employees) but the power of the UAW has GM (pardon my french) by the balls. And they are using money that should be making better products or going to the families of the employees to build themselves golf courses to make more money off the union members.
 

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Todd couldn't be more correct so I won't expand upon the position he has presented. Unions were needed to prevent CHILD LABOR in excess, taking jobs from adult workers, and parents who realized that their children could get jobs and put their own children at risk in factories at low wages. Today it isnt the EVIL big company. It is about an industrialized nation now loosing to Asia, Mexico, India and so many other places where labor is inexpensive, but so is everything else. Our workers won't roll over and it will come to a bankrupt situation, like it or not. It isn't the workers or managements fault. Management looses big time in the short run if they do what has to be done but will loose in the long run if they don't anyway.

Unions do have a role in large corporations. They should operate as an employee volunteer organization, not for profit, employee representation in process management for the betterment of the company etc. They should have no economic power or control over the employees or company. Workers should work on their own merit as companies would be regulated on payroll and benefits based upon the economy and demand for skilled workers. What we have now is almost a socialistic society within the unions presenting a right to work at a negotiated wage that also limits great producers, hours, postion, prefers a seniority pecking order and so much more. Our workers are fine. And management is good and knows what to do and would ultimately keep workers happy or loose them to competitive jobs. At present workers have a protectionist system that is both a job guarantee or limits potential depending on the employee. Both bad for the company.

About the health care issue. Most everyone I know has escallating health care costs. Most increases in costs are now being passed onto the employees. Many now pay more than 50% and up to 100% of the burden. If you want to save both the American companies and all of our benefits, speak up where it counts for all of us before it is too late for GM and so many others. Vote for nationalized medicine and to restrict Tort law. Our taxes are among the LOWEST, our fuel costs are among the LOWEST in the industrialized world. Tort law is killing our medical system costs and we should be paying for equality of medical care for all, and it will be via higher taxes, but not at the expense of big business.

I am for the workers and big business. I had to join a union, had to go on a strike when I could least afford it. I grew up, went into management, and now fully appreciate the balancesheet and problems faced. It isn't easy and everyone will be screwed.

The right move would be to immediatly shift a significant portion of the health care to the workers. Hate to say it but it is the right thing to do for both company and employees. Problem is that management will probably get a part of what they want but not enough and the employees will realize that they should take the hit but the union bosses will prevail in slowly bringing the company down, claiming victory for the workers while "comprimising" in their postion. Long term they loose too.

Remember Eastern Airlines. The unions won their position and the employees all lost their jobs with a company they liked. Management was made out to be greedy, bad, etc. When the pot is empty, its empty. Guess what all the employees did... they found other jobs with more competitive airlines, lower pay or moved out of the business. History does repeat itself.

If you support the workers, you are not wrong and it is uderstandable as they are skilled and deserving. If you support management, likewise. This is going to be a very challenging issue. Nobody will win this one.
 

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82-T/A said:
...You want to know why I'm mad? Because I'm a HUGE car buff, and eat, sleep, and drink while thinking about cars. When I'm going to the bathroom... I think about cars. I honestly think more about cars than I do breasts. The only time I don't think about cars is when I'm intimate with my wife.. and even then, a thought might pop into my head...
WHOA!!! :crazy:
Man, I was RIGHT THERE WITH YA, cruising in high gear, agreeing with every word :thumbs: ...Then...BAM... :willy: Like all the lugnuts came off at once!!...TMI ALERT!!!... :lol: :glol:
 
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