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Franco
11-17-2008, 10:14 PM
Seems like we already bailed out Chrysler a while back. Do we really need to bail out the big three? Maybe they should look at what they are producing instead. The Big 3 only make money building trucks, so maybe they need to just scale back and build trucks. What's killing them is that thier passenger vehicles(cars) are not in demand. Imports completely dominate passenger vehicle sales. By not bailing them out, we could free them from their union since they are a major part of the problem. The Auto Workers Union supported the Democrats and now they are calling thier chips in. I say, let the chips fall where they may and hopefully they can come back with the right business plan. That is, building what people want to buy instead of what they want to build.P S...I think Chrysler builds great passenger vehicles. However, the domestic automakers have such a bad reputation for the cars they use to build that I'm not sure they can make a comeback.

Marvin S
11-17-2008, 10:52 PM
Seems like we already bailed out Chrysler a while back. Do we really need to bail out the big three? Maybe they should look at what they are producing instead. The Big 3 only make money building trucks, so maybe they need to just scale back and build trucks. What's killing them is that thier passenger vehicles(cars) are not in demand. Imports completely dominate passenger vehicle sales. By not bailing them out, we could free them from their union since they are a major part of the problem. The Auto Workers Union supported the Democrats and now they are calling thier chips in. I say, let the chips fall where they may and hopefully they can come back with the right business plan. That is, building what people want to buy instead of what they want to build.P S...I think Chrysler builds great passenger vehicles. However, the domestic automakers have such a bad reputation for the cars they use to build that I'm not sure they can make a comeback.

Everyone seems to recognize what should happen except the Pols & Big 3 management. If they can prolong the agony they will just be able to buy bigger houses. Buzz posted a graph on wage costs for the Big Three which showed labor costs 50% higher than other manufacturers.

All being said, I like my Chevy Truck - the Duramax & the Allison Tranny. Would hate to see them discontinued. But on the other hand - when the aircraft industry went into the toilet in the early 70's there were no bailouts. & look at what they have done for the balance of payments.

But Bringing Home the Bacon seems to be of greater importance than the thought that it is unaffordable.

Paul Johnson
11-18-2008, 12:06 AM
The Big 3 only make money building trucks, so maybe they need to just scale back and build trucks. What's killing them is that thier passenger vehicles(cars) are not in demand.

They cannot just manufacturer trucks. They are restricted by the CAFE standards. The CAFE standards are the sales weighted mean fuel economy of the current model year of cars and light trucks manufacturered for sale in the U.S. The key point is the light trucks. The "Big 3" sell a disproportionate number of light trucks to the agriculture sector. In order to meet the CAFE standards, the cars manufacturered by the "Big 3" have to be very light and grossly under powered relative to the imports.

Furthermore, sales will not fix the problem! There is an excellent article by Mr. Levine (a former airline excutive and a distinguished research scolar and senior lecturer at the NYU School of Law) on page 19 of the November 17, 2008 Wall Street Journal that explains the problems for the big three. These problems include such things as the UAW "Jobs Bank" which guarentee's almost full wages and benifits for workers that lose their jobs due to automation or plant closure, dealerships (almost 5 times as many as Toyota) that cannot be closed because of state laws, revenue bonds for municipalities, more retirees than current workers, property and facilities that are not and probably will not ever be used again, and the list goes on and on. The argument that the manufacturers will go out of business is nothing but a scare tactic because the Democrats are afraid of losing UAW votes. Airlines have gone through Chapter 11 and they are still with us. Why would the auto manufacturers be any different? The only thing that is going to save the big 3 is Chapter 11.

If government loans our money to the Big 3, it will have to continue loaning them money until they file for Chapter 11 and we will never see a penny of those loans repaid.

Greg E
11-18-2008, 05:57 AM
I understand how big the auto industry is, how many people would be effected if it failed. I can understand why the govt would want to stick their nose in it. The question I have is...What are they going to do with the money? They've had years to figure this out. Are they going to keep building sorry a$$ cars that no one wants. Keep their unions intack. If they are going to keep doing what they have been doing then I say hell no. If they don't have a game plan by now, they probably need to file and regroup. It's sad that a industry of that size couldn't keep up with the times. How many more failed businesses will the govt ask us to bail out. Nice to know that our greed and fear of hard times is going to destroy our kids future

subroc
11-18-2008, 07:20 AM
I believe Congress should retire the debt of everyone that is a United States citizen. Since the left wants anyone that is here to be a citizen, Congress should retire his or her debt as well. Additionally, any company that is registered in the United States should have their debt retired. This debt retirement should be done with direct payments. Once done, the nation should/could start over.

If our congressional leaders believe they can run an industry better than the private sector, or they believe the industry isn’t being run “correctly’ they should take over the industry. Congress could use, as a model for taking over industries, Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez’s method.

What do you think?

badbullgator
11-18-2008, 09:06 AM
I think the day of the auto worker unions has come and gone…or should go anyway. When they were formed there was a need to protect these workers, but now like so many other things there are government agencies to protect these workers (Wage, workers comp…). I cannot for the life of me figure out why somebody turning a nut on an assembly line should be making $30+/hr plus benefits that most would kill for. Nurses don’t make that kind of money, nor do most college graduates in a number of fields. Teachers make WAY less than that. In a competitive market, free of union demands for wages you would easily find someone to do the same job for $15/hr and be very happy with it. I owned a plastering and drywall company for many years and use to get union guys that would move down (Florida is a right to work state) and the going rate for a GOOD plaster was $15-17/hr at the time. These union guys would laugh at me and tell me they had to get at least $30/hr. Of course I would laugh right back and tell them to go find it in this state. Sorry but I spend many years slinging mud and was/am a very good journeyman, but there was no way that what I did was worth $30/hr. Add to this that if you did hire them (for normal wages) they wanted to ONLY plaster and NEVER pick up a shovel or help in any way with anything other than putting mud on the wall. In their minds they were only to do one job and if the labors were not keeping up they felt it was fine to sit around and wait.
Unions have been a way of life in some areas for so long that several generations have now been members and they really believe that the wages paid to them is FAIR market amounts when in the rest of the world they are not even close. Try telling someone working in the same job that his father was over paid to do that he makes too much money and to be comp they will have to take a pay cut (this does happen in non-union jobs sometimes)
As long as the auto makers continue to pay ridiculous wages to people they will continue to lose money and will never be competitive in the market.

Bruce MacPherson
11-18-2008, 10:58 AM
This is not a bail out of the auto industry. This is a payoff to the Unions. Money down a rat hole to my way of thinking.

Raymond Little
11-18-2008, 11:17 AM
There can be endless discussions of why the U.S. auto industry is in such trouble. The answer lies not in one place but in many, from the decisions and makeup of management to the unions that control much of the workforce, and from the cost structure inherent in producing cars in the American economy to a simple systemic inability to produce outstanding vehicles. There might be varying degrees of truth to all or some of this, but the fact remains that each of the U.S. carmakers is on the verge of financial collapse.

This is what recessions are supposed to do. As in China and everywhere else, recessions reveal weak businesses and destroy them, freeing up resources for new enterprises. This recession has hit the auto industry hard, and it is unlikely that it is going to survive. The ultimate reason is the same one that destroyed the U.S. steel industry a generation ago: Given U.S. cost structures, producing commodity products is best left to countries with lower wage rates, while more expensive U.S. labor is deployed in more specialized products requiring greater expertise. Thus, there is still steel production in the United States, but it is specialty steel production, not commodity steel. Similarly, there will be specialty auto production in the United States, but commodity auto production will come from other countries.

That sounds easy, but the transition actually will be a bloodletting. Current employees of both the automakers and suppliers will be devastated. Institutions that have lent money to the automakers will suffer massive or total losses. Pensioners might lose pensions and health care benefits, and an entire region of the United States ó the industrial Midwest ó will be devastated. Something stronger will grow eventually, but not in time for many of the current employees, shareholders and creditors.

Here the economic answer, cull, meets the social answer, stabilize. Policymakers have a decision to make. If the automakers fail now, their drain on the economy will end; the pain will be shorter, if more intense; and new industries would emerge more quickly. But though their drain on the economy would end, the impact of the automakersí failure on the economy would be seismic. Unemployment would surge, as would bankruptcies of many auto suppliers. Defaults on loans would hit the credit markets. In the Midwest, home prices would plummet and foreclosures would skyrocket. And heaven only knows what the impact on equity markets would be.

In the U.S. case, the healthful purgative of a recession could potentially put the patient in a coma. Few if any believe the U.S. auto industry can survive in its current form. But there is an emerging consensus in Washington that the auto industry must not be allowed to fail now. The argument for spending money on the auto industry is not to save it, but to postpone its failure until a less devastating and inconvenient time. In other words, fearing the social and political consequences of a recession working itself through to its logical conclusion, Washington ó like Beijing ó wants to spend money it probably wonít recover to postpone the failure. Indeed, governments around the world are considering what failures to tolerate, what failures to postpone, and how much to spend on the latter. General Motors is merely the American case in point.

Summed up quite well by STRATFOR on what decisions our new PREZ will have to make.

Buzz
11-18-2008, 12:51 PM
I just read an article that had a statement in it from a Toyota executive. He said that if one of the big 3 goes down that the suppliers will follow. If the suppliers go down, it will impact everyone's ability to manufacture cars in the USA, including theirs. That is a sobering thought.

I wonder how many vehicles on the road are under warranty, and what happens if the makers go into Bankruptcy? If they go through liquidation, will parts cease to be available? If they breakdown, what then? Have them towed to a junkyard? I guess then there will be used parts available...

badbullgator
11-18-2008, 01:03 PM
Letting them fail along with the parts manufactures will create a vacuum in the industry and that vacuum will be filled by those who are not “stuck” with old methods. The companies that fill this void will have no choice except to overhaul the entire industry from top to bottom in order to succeed where the old school giants have failed.
I don’t believe that the Big 3 will be around in 10 years. Too much change is needed and they have been at it in the same way for so long they simply cannot change enough, soon enough to save themselves. Bailout or Bankruptcy, either way I don’t think they can survive for long. Either way it is like putting a band aid on a ruptured artery…it aint going to last long

Greg E
11-18-2008, 01:05 PM
Buzz, as long as someone needs a part there will be someone out there making it. Go to any parts store and look at all the generic parts. Not many people (except dealerships) use the expensive ones. We didn't cause them to fail. Like someone else said, new, better run companies will emerge from this.

Marvin S
11-18-2008, 01:19 PM
:o :o :o :o :o - Hey that's OK!

For those who don't have this feature, that is the surprised feature, & I'm not :o at the effort going to spin this as acceptable. George Will has an editorial on the bailout, basically saying we are asking the taxpayer to pick up the failed model of our Auto industry which includes the union greed.

You can't pay people for doing nothing & expect a profit. The money that has gone into this absurd benefit alone would have allowed the companies to manage to a better product. & beyond that, what person with a modicum of self respect would want to continue employment in that culture.

I just had to try out my new feature, Thanks Chris!

Buzz - Why don't you put up that chart again showing the wage disparities?

Uncle Bill
11-18-2008, 08:09 PM
Here's an interesting 'recall'. I you haven't seen it before, enjoy.

UB


A Japanese company (Toyota) and an American company (General Motors) decided to have a canoe race on the Missouri River Both teams practiced long and hard to reach their peak performance before the race.

On the big day, the Japanese won by a mile.

The Americans, very discouraged and depressed, decided to investigate the reason for the crushing defeat. A management team made up of senior management was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action.

Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, while the American team had 8 people steering and 1 person rowing.

Feeling a deeper study was in order, American management hired a consulting company and paid them a large amount of money for a second opinion.

They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were rowing.

Not sure of how to utilize that information, but wanting to prevent another loss to the Japanese, the rowing team's management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 3 area steering superintendents and 1 assistant superintendent steering manager.

They also implemented a new performance system that would give the 1 person rowing the boat greater incentive to work harder. It was called the 'Rowing Team Quality First Program,' with meetings, dinners and free pens for the rower. There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes and other equipment, extra vacation days for practices and bonuses.

The next year the Japanese won by two miles.

Humiliated, the American management laid off the rower for poor performance, halted development of a new canoe, sold the paddles, and canceled all capital investments for new equipment. The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses and the next year's racing team was out-sourced to India

Sadly, The End.

Here's something else to think about: Ford has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US , claiming they can't make money paying American wages.

TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US.

The last quarter's results: TOYOTA made 4 billion in profits while Ford racked up 9 billion in losses.Ford folks are still scratching their heads.

IF THIS WEREN'T SO TRUE IT MIGHT BE FUNNY

badbullgator
11-19-2008, 08:25 AM
You forgot to mention that the American team was paid $499/hr becasue of union demands and that the union also determined that the one pesron doing the rowing had to have a break after every 50 strokes.....

Pete
11-19-2008, 09:07 AM
UB
That was a great analogy.
I think they learned that from the government.
If they did get the 25 billion they would blow it like a drunken sailor and would be beggin for more. We live in a country with a welfare mentality.

Pete

Marvin S
11-19-2008, 09:21 AM
On a different note. My wife & I have been running an enterprise for many years. We assessed the outlook & planned accordingly, while our household would not have the temporary impact that a poorly run business would, it's the same on a smaller scale.

The vehicle manufacturers, suppliers & dealers dealers have had years to assess the impact of their poor choices & chose not to do anything.

We own 2 fairly new GM vehicles (this AM we get an e-mail from GM asking us to lobby our congressman) which means we have paid for some of their folly. We will only contact someone to support NO bailout. We also own shares of F, on the recommend of our son, & believe they all need to change their business model.

Steve Amrein
11-19-2008, 09:36 AM
To me its simple if it were worth saving in its current state and the stock value of almost nothing Warren Buffet would come in and buy it. Its obvious in its current state it will fail with or without the bailout $$ Without compromises from the union, management and the CAFE issues this will not end pretty. Even Helen Keller could at least tell when a freight train is coming. Did anyone see the movie "Gung Ho" even though a comedy it was quite telling. I heard on the news yesterday that GM in a effort to save some money they were not paying the dealer incentives.

badbullgator
11-19-2008, 09:49 AM
To me its simple if it were worth saving in its current state and the stock value of almost nothing Warren Buffet would come in and buy it. Its obvious in its current state it will fail with or without the bailout $$ Without compromises from the union, management and the CAFE issues this will not end pretty. Even Helen Keller could at least tell when a freight train is coming. Did anyone see the movie "Gung Ho" even though a comedy it was quite telling. I heard on the news yesterday that GM in a effort to save some money they were not paying the dealer incentives.

Very good point Steve. If it were worth saving someone/company/ conglomeration would step up and do so in order to make a profit. Nobody but the gooberment would waste money on them and they outdated and very poor business plan. The government has less of a problem giving it to them because it is NOT THEIR MONEY, and it looks like we are in for a big welfare form of government for at least the next four years. If it was worth anything donít you think China or some Saudi company would already be talking with GM/Ford/Chrysler ?? There are a lot of people and companies in this world that could buy them out, or at least a controlling share without batting an eye.
This goes back to my point that if they do fail someone will step up and fill the void. People need cars and someone will be able to manufacture and sell them at a profit and the world is full of people that are looking to do just that.

Buzz
11-19-2008, 11:43 AM
We own 2 fairly new GM vehicles

I am sure you realize that if those vehicles are under warranty, once they file bankruptcy, your warranty is gone. When I recently bought a vehicle, warranty was one of my considerations. It appears that warranty was the last thing I should have been looking at.

Buzz
11-19-2008, 11:58 AM
Buzz, as long as someone needs a part there will be someone out there making it. Go to any parts store and look at all the generic parts. Not many people (except dealerships) use the expensive ones. We didn't cause them to fail. Like someone else said, new, better run companies will emerge from this.


Replacement parts manufacture will be the FIRST thing to go away.

badbullgator
11-19-2008, 01:08 PM
Replacement parts manufacture will be the FIRST thing to go away.


I will bet that non factory parts will fill that void, and cheaper too. I seldom use factory parts unless I can't get generic for what I need

labdoc
11-19-2008, 03:07 PM
This story will get your blood boiling about any sort of bailout!!!

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,454844,00.html

I would love to have heard the hearings when senate brought up this issue.

Buzz
11-19-2008, 03:37 PM
This story will get your blood boiling about any sort of bailout!!!

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,454844,00.html

I would love to have heard the hearings when senate brought up this issue.

It was meant to make your blood boil - randstanding at it's finest meant to whip up populist anger and emotion.

The congressman asked if they would sell their jets. Stupid question.

There is a business case for private jets. I used to routinely fly around on a private jet with the company CEO. We would pile him and 6 or 8 other executives into the company jet and go conduct meetings at several locations. One day we had meetings in Detroit, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Chicago, and then finished up in Detroit again. Try that flying commercial.

This whole thing is a wet dream for conservatives who what to see the UAW go away and liberals who want to make Detroit pay for "destroying the environment" with those nasty gas guzzlers.

Hoosier
11-19-2008, 05:42 PM
This story will get your blood boiling about any sort of bailout!!!

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,454844,00.html

I would love to have heard the hearings when senate brought up this issue.

He could have employed some guy with no skills for less then 2 months with that $20,000 I guess. The whole industry is ridicules

Marvin S
11-19-2008, 05:45 PM
The congressman asked if they would sell their jets.

There is a business case for private jets.

The congressman was dripping with envy.

There is a better business case for not all flying on one plane. Ask Payne Stewart most recently, & Utah Construction many years ago.

Buzz
11-19-2008, 06:48 PM
There is a better business case for not all flying on one plane. Ask Payne Stewart most recently, & Utah Construction many years ago.

Actually, on the trip I referred to in my post above, we took off from Milwaukee in a bad snow storm, big wet snowflakes. I was sitting next to the engineering manager of a huge Milwaukee based electronic controls manufacturer. We were both pretty tense watching the wings ice up. After we got about half way across Lake Michigan we were both laughing with a drink in our hands. But I think we were both pretty shaken. There were 10 passengers on the plane, 5 of them were among the very top management from my company. Not good...;-)

Everyone on the plane seemed oblivious, except for the two engineers...

Marvin S
11-19-2008, 07:59 PM
Everyone on the plane seemed oblivious, except for the two engineers...

I don't know the circumstances of the Utah Construction crash other than they had their 5 top guys on the plane. At the time the big three in construction were Morrison-Knudsen, Peter Kiewit & Utah Construction, who also did mining projects which piqued my interest. Bill Agee wiped out MK, PK is still going with a different business model & Utah Construction was gone by the time they completed those projects on the books.

I do not like to get off the ground, look at what happened to Air Florida with iced up wings & the eventual demise of the airline. :(

Snicklefritz
11-19-2008, 07:59 PM
Mr. Booty said:


I say, let the chips fall where they may and hopefully they can come back with the right business plan.(emphasis mine)

Hope is not a plan!

Joe S.
11-19-2008, 08:12 PM
I used to routinely fly around on a private jet with the company CEO.

I would venture a guess it wasn't flying into D.C. to ask for $25 BILLION to help you make ends meet.

There was at one time a business case for an airplane, now, perhaps, not so much. HD Video Tele-Conferece can be set up almost anywhere in a matter of minutes. Computers and the internet...real-time conversation and document transfer.

Change With The Times Or Be Destroyed By Them Regards,

Joe S.

Buzz
11-19-2008, 10:16 PM
There was at one time a business case for an airplane, now, perhaps, not so much.

Change With The Times Or Be Destroyed By Them Regards,

Joe S.

I came to a small company before the current trend in teleconference. In the 90's I helped move manufacturing from a factory in Little Rock to Guadalajara. Meanwhile I was living in Cincinnati. I can't picture doing it all by remote control. You have to get personal with the folks and spend time in the factory and get your arms around what you're working with.

That said, if it's time for blue collar workers to get competitive with the foreign workforce, it's time to take a look at executive compensation. It's ridiculous. Stock holders are getting fleeced.

Matt McKenzie
11-20-2008, 07:42 AM
I came to a small company before the current trend in teleconference. In the 90's I helped move manufacturing from a factory in Little Rock to Guadalajara. Meanwhile I was living in Cincinnati. I can't picture doing it all by remote control. You have to get personal with the folks and spend time in the factory and get your arms around what you're working with.

That said, if it's time for blue collar workers to get competitive with the foreign workforce, it's time to take a look at executive compensation. It's ridiculous. Stock holders are getting fleeced.

It is absolutely time for someone to take a look at pay scales for labor and management. But that someone should not be the Federal Government. If we look at all the failures of large corporations in the last few months, the common thread is government involvement. The left wants massive regulation, the right wants no regulation, so we wind up with this half-@$$ed mess that is neither free market capatalism nor total socialism and it just doesn't work.
You can't tell the auto makers what kind of cars to make, regulate what kind of fuel economy they get, force them to pay ridiculous wages, etc. etc. and expect them to survive. The market dictates the product. We should have left them alone and let them succeed or fail on their own merit.
You can't force mortgage companies to disregard their lending standards to make life "fair" and expect them to remain solvent. How is that plan working out?
Then, when the chickens come home to roost (to borrow a phrase from my favorite preacher), the taxpayers have to shoulder the burden of government incompetence.
Beware anyone who sells an idea using the word "fair".

Pete
11-20-2008, 09:22 AM
[QUOTE][/QUThere is a business case for private jets. I used to routinely fly around on a private jet with the company CEO. We would pile him and 6 or 8 other executives into the company jet and go conduct meetings at several locations. One day we had meetings in Detroit, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Chicago, and then finished up in Detroit again. Try that flying commercialOTE]


That might be good business in other situations but I don't think these guys had other places to go. They were there with their pathetic little hands out. I'll bet for the 25 billion they'll hang out there all weekend . Right now its the only free money avaiable for the padding of their humungous salery and bonus plan.

Today In the news they showed where all these men were asked if they were willing to take a salery reduction. All said hell no. But they would eagery cut the wages of the people who make the company work.
They are scum dressed in a 3 piece suit, They lack character and integrety and should be fired without a penny of compensation and replaced with someone who cares about the workers and the product,,and have an eye for producing what people want then the auto industry will thrive again.

They are a discrace to man kind and anyone who is willing to give them another 25 billion to line their pockets is off their rocker. What a sick country this is becoming.

And AIG They still haven't payed out the loans to companies for running their buisiness. Thats what I heard alot of the money was appropriated for. Instead they threw a huge private party. Thats what the auto barrens will do too if they rape us of another 25 billion:-x

Pete

PS Thats the first time I have ever needed to use the mad emoticon.

badbullgator
11-20-2008, 10:20 AM
Our local paper did a story today on retired auto workers take on this. Surprise, all of them favored it and they all feel the executives make too much. The interesting part was that they feel the government OWES it to the auto industry for, get this, winning WWII. Now I would down play their role in leading the way for the industrial war machine during WWII, but come on that does not entitle you to a government bailout. They were all also concerned about their pensions and the pensions of those currently working for the auto makers. Pensions??? That is part of the problem, paying union guys TOO much money in the first place and then supporting them for the rest of their lives. I donít begrudge those who earned them many years ago when that was the norm, but pensions and life long healthcare have proven to be part of a bad business plan and very few if any companies offer this anymore. All of these retirees felt they were never adequately compensated for the work they did and feel that the workers today are getting the short end of the stick. This is a prime example of the union mentality that has caused a big part of this problem. Generations have been over paid for the job they do and it has been instilled in the current workers that they too are worth more than they are. Turning bolts and spot wielding is not worth the money they are paid.

Franco
11-20-2008, 10:52 AM
Mr. Booty said:

(emphasis mine)

Hope is not a plan!

I use that expression all the time at work! You are correct, hope is not a plan. The best thing we can do for them and this coutry is not bail them out. However, I can be hopeful that they can work it out on their own.

Let the free market reign and we will all be better for it!

Buzz
11-20-2008, 10:58 AM
pensions and life long healthcare have proven to be part of a bad business plan and very few if any companies offer this anymore.

And this is a good thing?

Marvin S
11-20-2008, 11:14 AM
And this is a good thing?

It's reality.

I'm a retiree of the Boeing Company, one that has a close to monopoly. You do not see them getting overly generous with anyone, except in recent times, the executives.

They have taken a few strikes to establish management rights. They are also willing to move their entire production line if need be. What's there not to like about that management, except of course, the rewarding of executives?

What tickles my funny bone is Mullaly moved to Ford because he didn't get the top job at Boeing, but drove a Lexus when hired. He wanted the top job at Boeing but was found lacking. He's cutting a fat hog at Ford, so much for his overall management skills. But typical of people who get to those positions, a very effective self promoter.

Anyone who retires expecting all legs of the retirement stool to hold up have not practiced due diligence.

The interesting thing about the Boeing Company is the 1st & 2nd level shop supervisors & the Lead Engineers could & do run the company as long as managements requests aren't too idiotic.

EdA
11-20-2008, 11:14 AM
Let the free market reign and we will all be better for it!
unfortunately mounds of local, state, and federal government regulations prevent any such occurrence, free markets are what happens at flea markets...

badbullgator
11-20-2008, 11:58 AM
And this is a good thing?

Yes and no. It has not worked and that is the way it is. I don't think one should expect a company you work for to take care of you for the rest of your life. Plan and save, IRA's 401K's, gold..... I am not of the school that anyone needs to take care of me be it who I work for or the government.
Now if you want to work your life away at a reduced rate so that these benifits can be included that is a different story, but just give me mine and I will take care of myself

Hoosier
11-20-2008, 01:19 PM
Yes and no. It has not worked and that is the way it is. I don't think one should expect a company you work for to take care of you for the rest of your life. Plan and save, IRA's 401K's, gold..... I am not of the school that anyone needs to take care of me be it who I work for or the government.
Now if you want to work your life away at a reduced rate so that these benifits can be included that is a different story, but just give me mine and I will take care of myself

This is also the way I feel. I think it comes with being self employed all my working life. The problem with our way of thinking is so many people don't have the self control to do the right thing with their money. These people still think they have the right to retire at 62 or 65, but with no money of their own. I see this all the time with trades people. These people need someone to take care of them, manage their retirement. Otherwise at 70 they will be sitting there broke, naked, and confused as to what happened.

Paul Johnson
11-20-2008, 02:05 PM
The fact is "Big 3" concessions to the UAW are a major factor in the failure of the "Big 3." The other major factors are the concessions to the state protected dealerships, concessions to local municipalities, and the CAFE standards. Therefore, if the unions, states, local municipalities, and the federal government can all get together and make major compromises, there would be no need for Chapter 11. RIGHT! The UAW will not give up the "Job Bank" or reduce their demands for pensions and health care! The states will not allow the excess dealerships to go out of business! The local municipalities will not give up their demands and the "greens" will not let the Democrats change the CAFE standards! The sad fact is that there are to many parties and to many demands for any solution outside of Chapter 11.

Paul Johnson
11-20-2008, 02:24 PM
Wow! Nancy and Harry are on TV with the rest of the Democrat leadership (Chris, Barney and company) proposing to give your and my money to the "Big 3" so that the Democrats can continue get those UAW and "green" votes! What a wonderful country, a country where elected officials can take my money and give it to the people that vote for them. The power to do this must be written in the Constitution in invisible ink!

PS I have a new Dodge Ram and I still believe that Chapter 11 is the best answer. I did hear a good idea, have the federal government guarantee the warranties on "Big 3" vehicles.

Thomas D
11-20-2008, 02:29 PM
Am I not correct in that their pensions are protected regardless of the big 3 going under?

Thomas D
11-20-2008, 02:40 PM
Interesting website:

http://www.uaw.org/index.cfm

Paul Johnson
11-20-2008, 02:41 PM
Am I not correct in that their pensions are protected regardless of the big 3 going under?

Yes, pensions are protected by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) but only to a maximum of $54K per year for a worker retiring at 65 ($24K per year if a UAW worker retired at 55).
Operations are financed by insurance premiums set by Congress and paid by sponsors of defined benefit plans, investment income, assets from pension plans trusteed by PBGC, and recoveries from the companies formerly responsible for the plans.

Under Chapter 11, "recoveries from the companies formerly responsible for the plans" may place some burden on the taxpayer. I am not sure about health benefits.

Thomas D
11-20-2008, 02:48 PM
Part of the testimony was that 40% of the UAW retirees are under 65 yrs old, and that their medical coverage would be eliminated. Now I just retired at 62 and the company still pays the major part of my med ins. However, I have made sure that I have the funds available to pay it if the company decides not to fund it any longer. Obviously, most of these people did not. More cradle to grave mentality.

Paul Johnson
11-20-2008, 03:07 PM
Part of the testimony was that 40% of the UAW retirees are under 65 yrs old, and that their medical coverage would be eliminated.

As a cancer reseacher at a major university, the NIH refused to renew my grant because the discoveries "would interfer with drug company profits." Since I was only 61 and it takes 7 - 10 years to establish a new research program, I was effectively forced into retirement. Since I am not eligible for Medicare, I have to pay for my medical and dental insurance. Why should I be forced to pay for a UAW retiree's health care?

Unfortunately, bailing out the auto industry is nothing more than pandering to the special interests for votes.

Gerry Clinchy
11-20-2008, 05:13 PM
Under Chapter 11, "recoveries from the companies formerly responsible for the plans" may place some burden on the taxpayer. I am not sure about health benefits.

When Bethlehem Steel was bought out, that was the big deal: that retirees health benefits would be curtailed. After 65, they would have Medicare just like everyone else, but not nearly as luxurious as the company plan would have been. Nobody could afford to buy what was left of the company if they had to absorb the retirees' benefits.

The same is occurring with employees of Lucent Technologies & it's spin-off Agere, Inc.

I believe, in situations like this, Medicare pays first anyway and the company plan picks up after that. So, the cost to Medicare wouldn't be affected anyway.

Aren't most of the long-term warranties today actually an "insurance" program? If so, wouldn't that keep the parts manufacturers in business? Dealership service departments could become "specialty" service shops since they have the mechanics already trained to work on the existing vehicles of those particular brands.

Has anybody thought of merging the Big 3 into one company, and cutting down on the # of models offered? Taking the best from each of them. And separating the trucks (for agricultural use) from the rest of the CAFE regs? There is plenty of duplication of similar models between the Big 3.

My son works for Toyota, and they are sticklers for quality right down to the sales force. If you pick up a new car for T, and it has even a smudge on the exterior, the salesperson gets a zero for customer satisfaction.

Buzz
11-20-2008, 09:25 PM
I believe, in situations like this, Medicare pays first anyway and the company plan picks up after that. So, the cost to Medicare wouldn't be affected anyway.


Has anybody thought of merging the Big 3 into one company, and cutting down on the # of models offered? Taking the best from each of them. And separating the trucks (for agricultural use) from the rest of the CAFE regs? There is plenty of duplication of similar models between the Big 3.



Isn't every auto worker over 65 on medicare? What they get in their insurance benefit I believe is a supplemental insurance to help pick up things that medicare doesn't cover. Most of the retirees I know carry their own supplemental plans.

The merger part, that is part of what GM and Chrysler had in mind. In the current climate I don't know where the financing for a merger would come from.

The thing about the light trucks not being suitable for agriculture use I don't understand at all. I have seen some statements here, but I have never heard anyone here in South Dakota complain about their trucks being too light and under powered because of CAFE. But they aren't driving 150's and 1500's. Plenty of 250's, 350's, 2500's and 3500's. But then again, I'm not a farmer, I just run across one here and there.:confused:

Gerry Clinchy
11-21-2008, 12:32 PM
Isn't every auto worker over 65 on medicare? What they get in their insurance benefit I believe is a supplemental insurance to help pick up things that medicare doesn't cover. Most of the retirees I know carry their own supplemental plans.

So, one might have to carry workers 62 or older for the remaining years till 65. If they are much younger than that, uh, that might mean they'd have to get a part-time job to maintain similar benefits until at least age 62. Still would be costly, but not as costly as footing the bill for luxury benefits for everybody for the rest of their lives.

The merger part, that is part of what GM and Chrysler had in mind. In the current climate I don't know where the financing for a merger would come from.

Have not other companies merged without financing? If the companies really saw this as a means of survival (if they really want to survive) could they not begin making large cuts in upper end compensation and use that cash to self-fund merger costs? Might be able to share those company jets and sell off the over-skill as well.

It also occurs to me that there must be small "airlines" that could provide private jets for these companies on an as-needed basis. Or is that actually the situation now? Rent-A-Jet :D

The thing about the light trucks not being suitable for agriculture use I don't understand at all. I have seen some statements here, but I have never heard anyone here in South Dakota complain about their trucks being too light and under powered because of CAFE. But they aren't driving 150's and 1500's. Plenty of 250's, 350's, 2500's and 3500's. But then again, I'm not a farmer, I just run across one here and there.:confused:

WRT to the trucks, supposedly the F150 is the most popular vehicle around. Suspect that not all of them are owned by farmers.

Marvin S
11-21-2008, 01:10 PM
Isn't every auto worker over 65 on medicare? What they get in their insurance benefit I believe is a supplemental insurance to help pick up things that medicare doesn't cover. Most of the retirees I know carry their own supplemental plans

When I retired from the big kite factory they carried my wife & I for medical, dental & eyewear. None of them cadillac plans but sufficient. When each of us turned 65 - dental & eyewear disappeared. The company offered a Supplement which quickly became cost prohibitive. We self insure now, & the prescription drug benefit has helped drive costs down.

On Medicare the system works this way - care provider submits a bill if they accept Medicare - Medicare allows what their schedule shows, usually between 30-40% of total bill. After one has satisfied the deductible, Medicare pays 80% & you pay 20%. Provider writes off the remainder. So in fact, those on Medicare are paying for 6-8% of an original total bill. It is a strong case for self insuring.

Glasses happen every 2 years. Teeth get cleaned yearly, bad ones get pulled, (down to 16 now) & some day will have false teeth. I can still chew more than I should eat. Forget about implants - you can eat a lot of soup for $2,500 a shot.

There is too big a deal being made about these supplements.