G.M.’s Latest Plan Envisions a Much Smaller Automaker
By BILL VLASIC and NICK BUNKLEY Published: April 27, 2009 New York Times
Over the last months countless articles and news commentaries have discussed the plight of the US auto makers. Bankruptcy, restructuring and foreign buyouts are all on the table as the US Government pushes Chrysler and General Motors to fix itself or get fixed.
One item that keeps appearing and as I think back over the last years, starting when Asian auto makers built factories here in America, I am constantly amazed to see that the UAW is not part of the solution. I appreciate that their role is to protect the interests of their members. Yet they simply focus on protecting the lavish pensions (developed when Detroit was ever so profitable) that these individuals are “entitled” to.
I have a profound respect for much of the work the union movement has done to protect the American worker and to assure them that they are paid a fair wage, work in reasonably safe conditions and various other initiatives that escape my mind.
What disturbs me these days is that we complain about Outsourcing and the migration of jobs to India, Malaysia, in years past Ireland and countless other countries willing to work for less than the American worker and do those jobs that are “Beneath Us”. Why we have the human resources, just look at the current rate of unemployment. When it is zero then OK let’s outsource.
As the spokesperson for American workers and hoping they are aware that we cannot practice isolationist policies and impose tariffs and taxes to protect American jobs. I worry that they are not out there working with business and the government to protect those jobs or better yet grow the n umber of jobs while still exploiting the virtues of technology and the goal to reduce the end cost to the consumer, their members.
Instead they slow down progress. They do not take the lead in driving for quality and do not help to make sure what we build or do with American hands and minds is the best that can be made or provided anywhere.
In the article, what I am once again reminded of is the fact that they insist that the “Pensions” be protected 9screw the stockholders and debit holders. i do not see them thinking about the fact that the future of our children is at risk. Jobs will continue to go to where it is less expensive to produce and where equally skilled people demonstrate a willingness to work to put food on their tables.
The unions are one of the great strengths of America. At this time of economic turmoil, where greed is at the core of our housing crisis, the introduction of high risk derivatives and a truly expensive health care system. They should be leading the workforce to understand that the American dream never was intended to guarantee anyone everything and that the American dream was built on hard-work, prudent investment and quality.
If we can return to these roots and focus on quality, hard-work and assuring the future of America for our children, then we will see an upturn in the market and a return to full employment where immigrants are seen as a positive influence and not illegals stealing American jobs.
At the same time Management is equally responsible for our plight. Sub-prime mortgages, derivatives, short sighted corporate planning and yes greed leads them also to be UN-American. They are to focused on the next analyst briefing and their quarterly results and make sure they could sell more for less. So they purchase materials produced by non Americans. They do not insist on an equitable balance between pay, quality and work. Then to make matters worse they insist that they are paid millions of dollars, the Government then bail them out when they make stupid decisions; for what?
We are all in this together and although we know that communism and socialism does not work. Capitalism only works when we do right by everyone and devise a fair distribution of wealth: based on ability, hard work and ingenuity.