GM Adds an Extra $18m for AA Contract Vote
United Auto Workers (UAW) at American Axle are set to [s]ratify [/s]vote on their new contract. You know– the one that cuts their wages from about $28/hour to $14.35-18.50 per hour after an 11-week strike. The one where UAW Prez Big Ron Gettelfinger said he didn't want GM's involvement. Yeah… that one. The Detroit Free Press reports a lot of the workers are unhappy with the proposed settlement. However, most feel they don't have a choice (as if). For its part AA management is hoping most UAW members will opt for buyouts or early retirement; it would be a shame to waste the extra $18m GM kicked in at the last minute to sweeten the pot (bringing their "involvement" ito $218m). Where GM wll get the money is anyone's guess. Perhaps those money trees at RenCen are producing a bumper crop this year. And well they should– they're being fertilized with the highest-quality corporate bullshit in the world. Just sayin'.
GS650G on May 20, 2008
A few more strikes like this one and GM will have their costs down enough to make money. A few years ago the CWA struck at Verizon for three weeks. After 3 weeks they got a measly 3% increase spread out over 3 years. Financial pundits calculated that Verizon saved enough in wages for 3 weeks to fund most of the pay increase and their stock went up as a result. The workers sacrificed 3 paychecks and got almost nothing in return. They don't do math entirely well I guess. The union wanted to unionize the wireless workers, they didn't give much thought to the operators and customer service reps that were out of work for almost a month, and Verizon agreed to let them try a vote. That was the CWA's real goal, to increase their base. In the end the wireless workers voted not to join the union, probably because they didn't want to be used as pawns as well. Anyone working in the auto creation business would be well advised to start learning how to hang drywall, fix cars, paint houses or run computer networks because it's only going to get worse.