December 12, 2008 by The Constant Complainer
Welcome to the award winning blog of The Constant Complainer.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but I was extremely disappointed to see the bailout for the U.S. automakers fail.
In general, I have mixed feelings about the Wall Street bailout and have not been completely satisfied about how that process works and the fact that one person has sole responsibility to decide who gets money and who doesn’t. PNC Bank buying National City Bank is one derogatory example.
With that being said, of course I would agree that I don’t want U.S. automakers to file for bankruptcy. That is why I was supportive of a special bailout being proposed specifically for them.
If the auto industry collapses, a few affects come to mind. First, the auto industry is the catalyst that drives much of the advertising in the media industry. If the dealers and companies stop advertising, that in turn will cripple radio stations and newspapers. Second, many people with shaky credit have at least, over the last few years, been able to secure an auto loan, which has helped both the auto industry and consumer credit ratings. It’s fair to say that only the people with top-tier credit are getting loans now, but frankly they’re not the ones that need them. Third, I read a report earlier that said there were 100,000 people who became unemployed last month and the national unemployment rate is now 6.7%. Do you realize that the auto industry provides 3 millions jobs nationwide? A friend was just telling me that he thinks many people simply don’t understand how much the auto industry affects the entire country. I think he’s right.
What irritates me the most is the fact that the bailout for the U.S. automakers failed because of the UAW. Most reports this morning cite the union’s lack of willingness to accept stiff wage cuts is what caused the Senate to balk at the bailout. One report I read said the UAW didn’t want any cuts to take place for their workers until 2011. Hello!!! That’s funny, because the companies are going bankrupt now! I have always been pro-company, not necessarily anti-union, but this is clearly an example of how problematic labor organizations really are.
Anyway, let’s get back to the economy. It’s getting scary out there and I truly believe that this is just the beginning. I think it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better.
Have a nice weekend…
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Good writing. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed my Google News Reader..
I agree with you. I not anti-union. I am not anti company. That being said, I don’t think the union members or any other worker on the floor should have to take wage cuts. If the automobile companies were that concerned, they would cut other places and the guy on the floor’s salary would be the last place to look to make cuts. Are they asking for sacrafice anywhere else than from the workers? The ones at the bottom weren’t the ones getting huge bonuses during the “GOOD” times. Why should they take the hit during the “BAD” times?
There is plenty of fault to go around. I don’t think the companies or the politicians are telling the whole truth. I don’t believe a word either side says… CHANGE IS COMING, 1/20/09!
Unfortunately, bankruptcy will prove to be the only option for the companies that cannot stay afloat. They won’t go out of business, they’ll just be given a chance to re-organize. We can let it happen now when things aren’t so bad, or in another two or three years after a bail-out. We’re getting ready for the worst economy we’ve ever had. By next Christmas, we’ll start feeling the pain. Two Christmases from now, we will think we are in the middle of an Ayn Rand novel. The sit-com is soon going to end.
I hate to say this…but I agree with NCD. The big 3 are crying because they say no one will buy a car from a bankrupt company… I will buy a car from anyone as long as it is of good quality and the price is right. Again, they lie and are trying to mislead the American public into feeling sorry for them.
I think it’s unfortunate, but if we give them money who’s to say they will act in the best interests of the workers or whomever it is, other than themselves, they are trying to protect? They say they are worried about a bankrupcy’s effect on…what? Because they are so worried about the economy, right? The big 3 haven’t really acted out of anything other than selfinterest ever since this mess started. I was born in Detroit and I know it may hurt many of my friends and family. For that reason, I want to see a bailout and auto manufacturers saved. Every other cell in my body says…let ’em take their medicine, declare bankrupcy, reorganize, come back with a better produc., better ideas and better management!
My husband sells auto parts for a living. His company is hurting too and will hurt more if the bailout fails. As much as I hate to do it, I think we have to save the jobs dependent on the auto industry.
I believe the UAW should be more cooperative. Yes, all the “big guys” should be the ones taking the cut (like the CEO taking a $1 salary), but the truth is, the BIGGEST chunk of money is the salary, benefits and pensions of the employees. Even if everyone making over six figures in the company takes a big cut, it’s still a smaller part of the budget than the salary and legacy costs.
The UAW can afford to bargain when the cost is just to GM. But when taxpayers are asked to save the company, taxpayers who are hurting and making less than most of the GM employees, I think it’s only fair that union employees share the burden. I hear a lot about the pensions the employees were promised, but not as much as much about the status of the 401s of those being asked to fund this bailout. (After 35 years of scrupulous saving and hard work, we’ve lost *half* so far.)
I don’t want to tar union employees as lazy or corrupt. I know most all are simply hardworking supporters of their families. But we’re all sinking now. Everyone must make concessions from the top to the bottom.
Seth, are you for real? CHANGE IS COMING and it is coming in a big way. The economy is the worst it’s been in my lifetime. Because of that, CHANGE IS COMING! Seth, you haven’t told my why my statement is wrong… All you did was point out that the economy is bad and it’s going to be a huge task trying to fix it. You’re right though, thanks. How long did you have to watch TV to figure that out?
WE could have elected McBush and had four more years of fighting a war with which we shouldn’t be involved. WE could have elected McBush and continuing the tax cuts for the top %2 of people in this country, people who don’t even need or want a tax cut. WE could have elected McBush and gotten the rest of the world mad at The US and soon been involved with WW3. Do I have to continue?
By electing Barack Obama we give new life to the American Dream. We show that we are not just paying lip service when we tell our children they can be anything they want, even the President of the United States. By electing Barack Obama we give the poor and middle class, who are underserved and overburdened, that there is reason to believe that tomorrow may be beter than today.
If we were to continue on the same path as the last 8 years, more people would have lost their jobs, as a result of a poorly designed financial free-for-all on Wall Street, more people would have fallen out of the middle class and been labled poor, more people woul dstruggle to put food on their familily’s table, more children would have lost healthcare and all hope of going to college and, finally, all people, poor and rich alike, wouldn’t have been inspired and been able to wake up on Novenber 5, 2008 with a feeling that anytyhing is possible. Oh, yes, my friend! CHANGE IS HERE.
Zig, I know you don’t like to look at historical facts, but the worst economy in your life time was the period during Carter’s admisistration. This is nothing…yet.
Bob Nardelli is doing the same thing he does with every company: He bleeds them dry and moves on.
When he left Home Depot to join GM, his total earnings averaged out to $250,000 for every day he was there. Granted, if you are in a position like he is, you are entitled to more, but how much is enough? How much money can you take from workers and their families?
The CEO’s/Administrators knew that this would happen and assumed that they could get bailed out. I do feel extremely bad for the workers and their families, but at the same time, they shouldn’t be upset about the bailout, they should be upset with the CEO’s past decisions.
NCD, my bad! I meant his is the worst economy I have experienced during my ADULT life. But, to confirm you statement, I have NO IDEA about history. I got through all of college without taking a single HISTORY class!
I am actually hoping for the worst. I love down markets and struggling economic situations. While inflation rises, my salary climbs right along with it. I own a well balanced mix of stocks, bonds and “I” tresury savings bonds in my portfolio and in my tax deferred accounts. I make money and reinvest the dividends no matter what the stock market is doing. I am well diversified and have been planning on the worst for about 5 years. I recognized a second term of GWB would lead to total disaster, just like every second term Repunklican administration does!
But, you know all this, Mr. History!