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> Now THIS pxxxes me off
Tim
post Oct 10 2008, 03:59 AM
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AIG cancels planned events amid rebukes for hosting $440,000 function

American International Group Inc. said Thursday that it would cancel most of its planned events after lawmakers castigated the insurer for hosting a $440,000 function at a resort while benefiting from an $85-billion government bailout.

The cancellations include an event that was scheduled for next week at the Ritz-Carlton in Northern California's Half Moon Bay. The gathering that drew the rebukes was held last month at the St. Regis Resort in Dana Point. About 100 independent insurance agents who sell coverage for New York-based AIG attended, spending $23,000 on spa services, among other things.

Read more here -

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-aig1...0,2353290.story

Anyone wonder why we're in the crapper? These clowns almost go under, taxpayers who are losing jobs and homes bail them out - and they're off to a laa-dee-dah spa fxxxing resort??? Obviously nearly going out of business BY THEIR OWN HAND did nothing to change their way of thinking. Jerks. A couple of nice quotes from the article -

"This kind of behavior is an insult to taxpayers," the Montana Democrat wrote in a letter to Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke. Baucus asked for a response by Oct. 23.

"I cannot fathom how in the same day -- the very same day -- that AIG asked the government for another $37.8-billion loan, the company would even consider moving forward with plans to host another large conference at another luxury resort," said Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, a Maryland Democrat.

THEN, skipping another chance to learn they're idiots, they want to ADVERTISE EXPENSIVELY about their screw up. A nice repsonse -


"To spend the taxpayer's money on an expensive ad campaign to apologize for how you used taxpayer money leaves you open to further attacks," Sard wrote in an e-mail Wednesday to Ashooh.

It just stuns me to think how stupid people who are supposed to be smart have been.
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Dave
post Oct 10 2008, 01:07 PM
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Hey, it's even worse than you think...

$122.8 billion, not $85 billlion.
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Southsider2k12
post Oct 10 2008, 01:12 PM
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QUOTE(Dave @ Oct 10 2008, 02:07 PM) *

Hey, it's even worse than you think...

$122.8 billion, not $85 billlion.


So if we apply the same math to the $700 billion rescue plan, we end up at about 1.1 trillion dollars.

My estimate of $2 trillion is getting closer.
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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 19 2008, 07:51 PM
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7737040.stm



Detroit hit as car firms beg for bail-out


By Greg Wood
North America business correspondent, BBC News, Detroit IPB Image


IPB Image


They're scraping the first snows of winter off the windscreens at the Matthews Hargreaves Chevrolet dealership in the suburban sprawl that is greater Detroit.

But it's not just the weather that has suddenly turned nasty.

Sales of General Motors cars fell 45% last month.

"It's a little bit scary for me," says general manager of the Matthews Hargreaves Chevrolet dealership, Walt Tutak.

"I've been here for 34 years and I've never really seen it this bad".

Suppliers hit

Car dealerships employ more than one million people across the United States. Many of those jobs are now at risk.



IPB Image IPB Image IPB Image This week is absolutely critical IPB Image
Neil de Koker, Original Equipment Suppliers Association Mr Tutak has done better than many other dealers. His sales are down just 9%.

But he thinks the Big Three Detroit car makers - General Motors, Ford and Chrysler - should get a government bail-out - on certain conditions.

"I think the government should make sure that the carmakers change their way of doing business," he argues, "because they can't keep on doing what they have been doing and keep in business."

The companies that make parts for the Big Three are under threat too. They employ some 500,000 people.

It is feared that a bankruptcy filing by one of the Detroit carmakers would bring down some of the major suppliers too.

"This week is absolutely critical," says Neil de Koker, president of the Original Equipment Suppliers Association, which represents the parts makers.

"If we do not get the loan this week then I think we'll have to take some really drastic action to try to survive."

Never recover

Earl Fuller runs the union branch for skilled workers at the giant General Motors technology centre, which tests and develops new models.




Hundreds of his members have lost their jobs as projects have been cancelled.

He says a refusal to bail out the auto industry would have consequences far beyond Detroit.

"I believe we would no longer be an industrial power," he says.

"Our automobile industry would never recover. The cost to the United States of being a second class manufacturing country would be dear."

The end of Detroit

It is hard to find anyone in Detroit who opposes the bail-out.

But there are those who see the big three as the authors of their own demise because they were slow to innovate and develop more fuel-efficient vehicles.




Now they are suffering from the double whammy of higher petrol prices and the collapse in consumer confidence triggered by the credit crunch.

"Whether it's bankruptcy or bailout, these companies are going to be considerably smaller and they are going to look different," says Daniel Howes, business columnist at the Detroit News.

"That's just cold hard business. These companies are not managing growth, they are managing decline.

"It's over folks. Detroit as we know it is ceasing to exist."

Uncertain future

Anton Lulgjuraj knows about managing decline.

He runs Marko's Grecian Palace, a diner just across the road from the GM Tech Center. His business is down by 50% in the past year - since the lay offs began.

"The workers used to come in three times a day - breakfast, lunch and dinner," he says.

"Now I barely see a few for lunch. It's hurting my business tremendously. The trickle down effect. It doesn't just hurt the auto industry, it hurts the businesses around them also."

Mr Lulgjuraj has cut staff. He has had to let three cooks and five waitresses go, casualties of the downturn in the motor industry.

Outside, the shopping centre is empty and forlorn.

The Wal-Mart is long gone and five other stores, including a beauty salon and a gift shop, have closed.

Mr Lulgjuraj fears he may be next.


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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 19 2008, 07:58 PM
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7738224.stm



US car bail-out compromise sought
IPB Image Car executives said the failure of their industry could be catastrophic US politicians are looking to find a compromise plan to aid the country's crisis-ridden car industry.

Chief executives from Ford, GM and Chrysler have asked for an urgent $25bn (£16.6bn) bail-out package as a "bridge" to help them survive.

Republican Senator Mitch McConnell said a compromise was "the only proposal" that had any chance of becoming law.

Republicans and the White House are opposed to aid for the car industry coming out of the $700bn bank bail-out.

Bankruptcy urged

Mr McConnell said: "There is a way forward that will help protect the jobs in the auto industry, while also protecting taxpayers."

Democratic Senator Carl Levin said an "effort" was being made to close the gap between supporters and opponents of a rescue plan and provide a bridging loan to Detroit.

"It would be unthinkable for Congress not to be able to reach a conclusion when the leadership of the Congress, the president and president-elect all say they support bridge loans," he said.

IPB Image IPB Image This is all about a lot more than just Detroit - it's about saving the US economy from a catastrophic collapse IPB Image
Rick Wagoner
General Motors chief executive The House financial services committee chairman, Democrat Barney Frank, asked how the government could justify a bail-out for banks and insurers, but not the car industry.

"There seems to me to be an inherent cultural bias. Aid to blue-collar employees is being judged by a standard different than white-collar employees," he said.

However, many politicians question whether public money should be used to help the carmakers.

Republican Senator Richard Shelby said the car firms should file for bankruptcy so they could carry out much-needed reforms.

"I don't think they have immediate plans to change their model, which is a model of failure. I believe their best option would be some type of Chapter 11 bankruptcy," he said.

He also called for senior management changes, saying "these leaders have been failures and they need to go".

'Catastrophic collapse'

The car industry has said that without financial help, it is teetering on the brink of disaster.

IPB Image CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY Part of the US Bankruptcy Code giving troubled firms time to reorganise themselves Under Chapter 11 protection, a bankrupt firm can carry on trading under existing management It prevents creditors from forcing a firm into liquidation in order to sell off its assets IPB Image
Layman's credit crisis glossary General Motors, Ford and Chrysler say they are burning through billions in cash monthly and have little or no ability to raise capital in the private markets due to their poor financial health and the global credit crunch.

GM has warned it could run out of cash in a matter of weeks and cannot wait until President-elect Barack Obama - who has promised to help the industry - is sworn in in January.

The carmakers' top executives and auto workers' union president Ron Gettelfinger have spent two days before Senate and House committees making a plea for help.

GM's chief executive, Rick Wagoner, warned that if the US car industry failed, it could lead to a loss of three million jobs within the first year and ripple throughout communities around the country.

"This is all about a lot more than just Detroit. It's about saving the US economy from a catastrophic collapse," he said.

Critics have argued that many of the industry's problems have been self-made, citing their past reliance upon gas-guzzling trucks and SUVs and their opposition to tougher fuel-efficiency regulations.

Chrysler's chief executive, Bob Nardelli, rejected suggestions that the carmakers should seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

"We just cannot be confident that we will be able to successfully emerge from bankruptcy," he said.

International problems

On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson also resisted diverting funds to the US car industry.

IPB Image The US car industry is in need of resuscitation Democrats have so far rejected the option favoured by the White House and Republicans, which is to let the industry use a $25bn loan programme designed to help the companies develop more fuel-efficient vehicles.

The car industry's problems are not limited to the US.

The Canadian government said on Wednesday that it would "provide further support" for its ailing car sector.

General Motors, Chrysler and Ford employ 40,000 Canadians at their factories in Ontario, and are responsible for an estimated 300,000 direct and indirect jobs in the country.

Toyota has said it will shut down all of its North American factories for two days next month.

European car companies have asked for 40bn euros (£33.5bn; $50.6bn) of soft loans for the industry.

Do you work for Ford, GM or Chrysler? What do you think of this news? Send us your thoughts and comments using the form below:

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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 19 2008, 08:07 PM
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7651257.stm




Paris scathing about Detroit bail-out


By Jorn Madslien
Business reporter, BBC News, Paris motor show IPB Image



Car industry executives at the Paris motor show have kept their eyes firmly on developments across the pond this week.

President George W Bush signed legislation that gives US carmakers access to $25bn (£14bn) of cheap government-backed loans to help them develop less polluting cars - a huge bonus for the country's struggling car giants.

"General Motors, Ford Motor and Chrysler stand to benefit from low-cost funding at a time when tight credit market conditions make additional borrowing prohibitively expensive for most auto industry participants," the ratings agency Standard & Poor's in a report.

Added BMI Industry Insights in a report: "This is expected to save the carmakers millions of dollars in financing alone."

The proposed $700bn bail-out of American banks also caught the eye of senior industry figures. The bank bail-out could make it easier for car buyers to raise finance and thus help revive dire sales.

Hence, in a last-minute move, General Motors chief Rick Wagoner cancelled his scheduled appearance at the Paris show to throw his weight behind it.

European protests

European automotive industry executives see the $25bn loan guarantee as a bail-out package that will give American car companies an unfair advantage when it comes to developing less-polluting cars - a point that is not missed by the US authorities.



IPB Image IPB Image It's not a bail-out IPB Image
Fritz Henderson, chief operating officer, General Motors "German carmakers view this as subsidies violating competition," observes the CIA, the US intelligence agency, in a research note.

But those who see it as a bail-out have got it wrong, insists General Motors' chief operating officer Fritz Henderson.

"It's a loan, actually. It's not a gift," he tells BBC News in an interview.

"It's all about financing projects, which can range anywhere from a Volt [plug in hybrid] to hybrid vehicles to pretty significant forms of advanced propulsion.



IPB Image Detroit plan GM, Ford and Chrysler will receive some $5bn each Suppliers will share the remaining $10bn No repayments will be required during the first five years The interest rate is set at about 4%, a third of the current market rates Source: BMI Industry Insight "It's not a bail-out," he continues.

"If society decides we need more oil, we provide tax credits for drilling. The companies make $10bn a quarter. Is that a bail-out?

"Or let's take defence companies. Governments chose to underwrite R&D associated with defence.

"I am objecting to the characterisation, that this form of government support is a bail-out, whereas this form is something else."

Lessons from Washington

America's $25bn loan guarantee for carmakers is in stark contrast with the European system, where lawmakers are not offering financial incentives to balance a threat to fine companies if they do not cut emissions.




Brussels should take a leaf out of Washington's book, according to Carlos Ghosn, chief executive of alliance partners Renault and Nissan.

Governments should "lay down the financial means that will allow us to have low emission cars and zero emission cars", he says, according to industry magazine Automotive News Europe.

Jaguar boss David Smith wants the UK government to do the same, according to The Times.

VW's hopes

Some non-American manufacturers with plants in the US also hope to benefit from the loan guarantee, even though it is not clear they will be able to.



IPB Image IPB Image IPB Image I don't know whether it'll be enough IPB Image
Thierry Dombreval, chief operating officer, Toyota Motor Europe "We will raise our hand when the time comes," says Martin Winterkorn, chief executive of Volkswagen Group, the German company which also makes cars in the US.

But there is a clause excluding support for US plants that have been built during the last 20 years.

"It's got to be US projects," points out General Motor's Mr Henderson. "It would by and large favour, on balance, US companies."

Not enough?

Toyota's response to the $25bn worth of cheap loans its American competitors will soon benefit from is rather more lofty.

The Japanese carmaker outsells Ford, and possibly GM - depending on what the latest sales figures show, in the US market.

"It's OK with us," says Toyota Motor Europe's chief operating officer Thierry Dombreval of the loan guarantee.

"Although we are a large-scale producer in the US, we are not facing the same problems," he says, adding: "I don't know whether it'll be enough."

Mr Dombreval's view is shared by S&P, which believes that even with legislative and financial help, Detroit's Big Three are a long way from recovery.

"The loan package will not improve the Michigan-based automakers' credit and recovery ratings," the agency says in the report.





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eric.hanke
post Nov 19 2008, 08:44 PM
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Before handing these companies BILLIONS of dollars they should actually dress the part.

Instead of this:

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I would rather see this:

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Or maybe they could try some honesty:

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Or be honest with what they are actually going to use the money for, or on:

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Diane Sawyer sits with former call girl Ashley Dupre. (Photo courtesy of ABC / November 13, 2008)


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Southsider2k12
post Nov 20 2008, 07:37 AM
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The most telling thing that no one is really talking about is that the average compensation, including benefits, for a US auto worker is $73 AN HOUR. For their Toyota counterparts that number is about $45 an hour. In other words if you include benefits, the average US autoworker costs his employer $50,000 a year more than someone who builds cars here in the US for Toyota.
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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 20 2008, 09:08 AM
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eric.hanke, the second IBP image did not come up! Funny funny funny! TRUE.


SSider, those geniuses who flew individually instead of Lear-pooling to go beg for our money to Congress are the ones, speaking in class terms, who agreed to those wage packages. Those workers are the ones who created the wealth, and the ownership class just ate the surplus. That being said, the problem is not that the worker makes too much; it is that the management played a shell game, paying workers yesterday with money that should have been invested for today and tomorrow.


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Southsider2k12
post Nov 20 2008, 09:33 AM
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QUOTE(Roger Kaputnik @ Nov 20 2008, 09:08 AM) *

eric.hanke, the second IBP image did not come up! Funny funny funny! TRUE.
SSider, those geniuses who flew individually instead of Lear-pooling to go beg for our money to Congress are the ones, speaking in class terms, who agreed to those wage packages. Those workers are the ones who created the wealth, and the ownership class just ate the surplus. That being said, the problem is not that the worker makes too much; it is that the management played a shell game, paying workers yesterday with money that should have been invested for today and tomorrow.


If you have a cost structure that puts you $50,000 a person behind your competitors, that isn't only A problem, it is THE problem. Take GM for example who has 120,000 employees times that $50,000, and you come up with $6 billion in disadvantage. That money spent on their plane rides, while shortsighted and stupid, is a mere pittance compared to that number. To put it in perspective that $6 billion is about 40% of the total that GM is asking for.
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eric.hanke
post Nov 20 2008, 09:51 AM
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QUOTE(Roger Kaputnik @ Nov 20 2008, 09:08 AM) *

eric.hanke, the second IBP image did not come up! Funny funny funny! TRUE.


I updated the image...


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Southsider2k12
post Nov 20 2008, 11:36 AM
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And back to the original post... I came across this today.

http://www.businessandmedia.org/commentary...aspxPoliticians,
QUOTE
Journalists Have Eyes On The Wrong Ball
Portrayal of AIG conference as 'wine, women and song' shows ignorance of business.

By Dan Kennedy
Business & Media Institute
11/19/2008 1:54:33 PM

Send this page to a friend! (click here)

The news media have, for two weeks, endlessly expressed outrage at AIG’s spending several hundred thousand dollars on a sales conference held at a Phoenix resort – after getting federal bailout billions. The impression conveyed has been that AIG executives took money from us taxpayers and immediately turned around and blew it on wine, women and song, hanging out at a hoity-toity resort, wallowing in caviar on our dime. As usual, the reporting is grossly inaccurate.

And the posturing politicians demanding tighter government watchdogging and control over how the bailout dollars invested in AIG and countless other companies is spent is outrage misdirected.

The facts about these big AIG meetings are that sponsors, predominately financial product providers and other vendors, subsidize large portions of the budgets for these meetings. They directly underwrite or reimburse for expenses as well as rebate after the fact based on sales made to and through AIG. Attendees also pay to attend.

The $300,000 cost of the event splashed all over the TV screen in reporting on this is likely the budget but not the actual, net cost incurred by AIG. Further, these types of events are part and parcel of fueling sales in advance and rewarding salespeople for results.

Those reporting only the sensationalist aspect of all this – the cost, the fact that they occur at fancy locations – are either ignorant of or, more likely, deliberately omitting the other facts. That’s either to protect the tabloid value of the story, or due to another agenda.

The politicians who propose micro-managing these companies’ use of funds are nothing but blowhards. They know full well such oversight is impossible. Once funds are lent or invested, they merge and commingle with all other funds and no one can trace a dollar spent on a spa treatment for a top producing sales agent’s spouse back to its origin.

Further, the politicians’ fake outrage would be better replaced with real rage directed at themselves for complete and utter failure to oversee and regulate the one thing that really matters: Is a company like AIG maintaining the necessary financial reserves to support the insurance it is selling?

This incidental example gets to the core problem with almost all politicians’ meddling with business, and all media’s reporting on it. They are pontificating about things they do not understand, opining about things they are ignorant of.

It’s fair to expect politicians like Gov. Sarah Palin ought to know geography, although it turns out those rumors of her ignorance were made up. Politicians also need to learn how business works or employ advisers who know before investing billions of our dollars in them, and journalists ought to pass a business basics course before reporting on these matters.

In short, our present economic trauma has much to do with our electing ignorant, unqualified dunderheads to Congress, and employing equally ignorant journalists to serve as the public watchdogs over them. We need smarter, more knowledgeable people in these positions.

If we had citizen government instead of entrenched royalty, Congress would be populated by business owners, salespeople, shopkeepers, financial professionals and others who, back home, hold real world jobs, run real world businesses, meet real world payrolls, and have some firsthand practical knowledge. Instead we are the victims of career politicians completely distanced and divorced from the world you and I live in, and the businesses they attempt to regulate.

Dan Kennedy is a serial entrepreneur, adviser to business owners, sought-after speaker and author of 13 books. More information about Dan can be found at www.NoBSBooks.com, and a free collection of his business resources including newsletters and webinars at www.DanKennedy.com.


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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 20 2008, 11:42 AM
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QUOTE(southsider2k7 @ Nov 20 2008, 09:33 AM) *


If you have a cost structure that puts you $50,000 a person behind your competitors, that isn't only A problem, it is THE problem. Take GM for example who has 120,000 employees times that $50,000, and you come up with $6 billion in disadvantage. That money spent on their plane rides, while shortsighted and stupid, is a mere pittance compared to that number. To put it in perspective that $6 billion is about 40% of the total that GM is asking for.


High wages is not a labor problem, it is a failure of management to properly allocate resources. Don't blame a worker for a good wage.


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Southsider2k12
post Nov 20 2008, 11:48 AM
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QUOTE(Roger Kaputnik @ Nov 20 2008, 11:42 AM) *

High wages is not a labor problem, it is a failure of management to properly allocate resources. Don't blame a worker for a good wage.


Its a labor problem when the company is doomed to fail because of it. It is everyone's problem then. Of course they are also refusing further concessions, which could very well be dooming them to bankruptcy depending on the generocity up on the Hill. At that point all of their contracts will be null and void anyway.
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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 20 2008, 12:46 PM
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QUOTE(southsider2k7 @ Nov 20 2008, 11:48 AM) *


Its a labor problem when the company is doomed to fail because of it. It is everyone's problem then. Of course they are also refusing further concessions, which could very well be dooming them to bankruptcy depending on the generocity up on the Hill. At that point all of their contracts will be null and void anyway.


It is a problem FOR labor when the mgmt. has messed up for so long. The problem with wages is not CAUSED BY labor, and therefore, not a "labor problem." It is a direct result of mgmt., not allocating resources properly.

You have to remember that there were years where the amount of bonuses to top management was about was went to the labor force. Labor does not design or develop car models, sales timing, etc. That is all mgmt.


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post Nov 20 2008, 01:03 PM
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QUOTE(Roger Kaputnik @ Nov 20 2008, 12:46 PM) *

It is a problem FOR labor when the mgmt. has messed up for so long. The problem with wages is not CAUSED BY labor, and therefore, not a "labor problem." It is a direct result of mgmt., not allocating resources properly.

You have to remember that there were years where the amount of bonuses to top management was about was went to the labor force. Labor does not design or develop car models, sales timing, etc. That is all mgmt.


Now those bonuses have gone away, and the labor wages still exist. The problem with the contracts is that they can't be changed without union consent, unlike management benefits and salary. At the time the comensation packages fit under the structure of the industry, now that times have changed and management is trying to adjust, labor won't let them adjust. That isn't mismanagement, that is inability to manage. There is a difference, and that lies with the union.

Also don't forget the effect that $6 billion has on GM every year, in the very things you are talking about as more signs of mismanagement. That is $6 billion that can't be used for research and development. It can't be used for modernization of plants. It can't be used to develop new prototypes. It can't be used to look at new alternative fuels. Once it leaves the plant, it is gone to the company. In the case of the US companies it forced them to pursue the high profit margin SUVs because the high gas mileage lower priced cars didn't have enough of a profit margin to make them worth producing to the US company's because they still have to pay their labor. Like it or, being at the top of the world in wages and benefits has killed the US auto workers, not to mention all of the people in the US who have refused to support the auto workers wages by instead buying Toyota's and the like.

The blame of management is another standard operating procedure of class warfare that just doesn't hold water to me. There is plenty of blame to go around. You could change every bit of management in Detroit, and the reason they are in bankruptcy would still exist. Until the cost of labor is changed in the US auto industry, it is doomed to fail.
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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 20 2008, 01:34 PM
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It is not the hardhat crowd that is making any of the decisions that have ruined the industry. Do you expect workers to say, "No, don't give us those benefits or pay scales, we want to make sure that you have enough money to manage to make sure the industry stays healthy." That is ludicrous.

I do agree that the unions will have to arrive at some agreement with the corps. The fault cannot be laid at the feet of the workers who accepted an offer from mgmt. And it was not the hardhats who decided that SUVs were the way to go, nor did they lobby the gov't to keep CAFE mileage standards low.

As far as class warfare, I paraphrase Warren Buffet: There is a war between the classes, and my class is winning!



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Southsider2k12
post Nov 20 2008, 01:49 PM
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QUOTE(Roger Kaputnik @ Nov 20 2008, 01:34 PM) *

It is not the hardhat crowd that is making any of the decisions that have ruined the industry. Do you expect workers to say, "No, don't give us those benefits or pay scales, we want to make sure that you have enough money to manage to make sure the industry stays healthy." That is ludicrous.

I do agree that the unions will have to arrive at some agreement with the corps. The fault cannot be laid at the feet of the workers who accepted an offer from mgmt. And it was not the hardhats who decided that SUVs were the way to go, nor did they lobby the gov't to keep CAFE mileage standards low.

As far as class warfare, I paraphrase Warren Buffet: There is a war between the classes, and my class is winning!


When the choice is reduction or failure, I expect them to choose reduction. Its not ludicrous, it is common sense. A lesser paying job is always better than no job, especially when your industry is falling apart around you. For labor to not care about the health of their own provider tells a lot about how the auto industry got the point it is in.

It is also silly to characterize these contracts as offers from management. We are talking about tedious negotiation processes, in which the union has the right of strike, which they have used many times over the years. To classify this as only managements doing is just silly. You make it seem as if labor has never pushed for higher wages or bigger benefits. It sounds almost as if you believe that stockholders and management asked labor to take more than they asked for, when it is in fact the opposite.

One of my college professors actually spent time as an economist in labor negotations for some of the steel mills. They sure as heck weren't looking for him to provide figures that were conducive to small wages and benefits, that for sure!
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Dave
post Nov 20 2008, 02:43 PM
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QUOTE(southsider2k7 @ Nov 20 2008, 11:36 AM) *

And back to the original post... I came across this today.

http://www.businessandmedia.org/commentary...aspxPoliticians,


You know, after reading that article, it seems like he does a certain amount of speculation ("The $300,000 cost of the event splashed all over the TV screen in reporting on this is likely the budget but not the actual, net cost incurred by AIG" is speculation in my book.)

And I'm sorry, if he can't see the PR nightmare that that outing was, he's blind. That whole thing feels too much like lending your cousin money to pay his rent because he says he's running short, and then seeing his car parked at the riverboat the next day. Who wouldn't be ticked off?

It's sounding the same way with the Wall Street $700 billion bailout -- money given to the banks to "free up liquidity" is being used to pay executive bonuses, pay stock dividends, and to pay for mergers and acquisitions. Is the liquidity crisis past so those banks can go back to doing this stuff, or are they just doing business as usual, just with taxpayer dollars?

I've gotten to the point where I'm going to refuse to see a stock market crisis until I see multiple brokers jumping out of their windows. Nothing says "panic" short of brokers splattered on the sidewalks.

This post has been edited by Dave: Nov 20 2008, 02:44 PM
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Roger Kaputnik
post Nov 20 2008, 02:53 PM
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QUOTE(southsider2k7 @ Nov 20 2008, 01:49 PM) *


When the choice is reduction or failure, I expect them to choose reduction. Its not ludicrous, it is common sense. A lesser paying job is always better than no job, especially when your industry is falling apart around you. For labor to not care about the health of their own provider tells a lot about how the auto industry got the point it is in.

It is also silly to characterize these contracts as offers from management. We are talking about tedious negotiation processes, in which the union has the right of strike, which they have used many times over the years. To classify this as only managements doing is just silly. You make it seem as if labor has never pushed for higher wages or bigger benefits. It sounds almost as if you believe that stockholders and management asked labor to take more than they asked for, when it is in fact the opposite.

One of my college professors actually spent time as an economist in labor negotations for some of the steel mills. They sure as heck weren't looking for him to provide figures that were conducive to small wages and benefits, that for sure!



Well, NOW I do expect the unions and mgmt. to reach some accomodation, or as is plain to everyone, there will be quick massive job losses instead of slow massive job losses. I was referrring to back when the contracts were put together.

"Offers from mgmt." is shorthand for an agreement that mgmt. agreed to. As you could verify from everyone except the fool who wrote a letter to the ND putting forth the proposition that borrowers forced banks to give bad loans, the power equation is skewed to ownership and its representatives, not to labor and its reps.

It is incumbent on ownership and its management to invest, develop, and plan. Now that that failure is laid open and the bill due, the payment will be from those owners, their management, the workers, and the approximately 3 million related jobholders. Please do not blame unions for working to provide a piece of the pie for their members and the nonmember labor benefiting from the wage levels set by union contracts. You can blame them now if they do not find a way for the industry to gracefully land.




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