• Oct 15th 2008 at 9:29AM
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In an announcement that should be anything but shocking to anyone who even remotely follows the auto industry, United Auto Workers head Ron Gettelfinger says he and the UAW would be against any merger between automakers that would reduce either company's workforce. Considering that the Union's main job as of late has been safeguarding the jobs of its members, we would expect nothing less than an all-out war between Gettelfinger and the automakers involved, if such a merger were to take place, as much of the potential money savings would undoubtedly be in duplicate workforce reductions. In any case, Gettelfinger says that the UAW has not officially been contacted by either party regarding anything of the sort, lending further credence to the notion that any talks that are currently taking place are very much in the early stages.
[Source: The Detroit Free Press]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      It's sad--and even twisted--how the auto union just can't get themselves to think outside of their own selfish, short-sighted ambitions.

      Merger or no merge, the big 2.5 are hurting. Badly. Gettelfinger can't expect to stomp his foot down and think that the UAW will stay afloat. Either he's just playing union politics to appease other union heads, or he's so self-absorbed into trying to leech as much money out of automakers that he doesn't care if those same automakers go down.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Unions suck. Go away unions.
      • 6 Years Ago
      While I am not anti union, especially in these time of gross excesses by Big Business and Government. Such a position while politic is unrealistic. Our auto makers have the wrong product mix, that coupled with the certainty of a long Resession ( maybe depression) make it certain they MUST cut workers and facilities or they will go bankrupt and all will lose their jobs
      • 6 Years Ago
      What happens with the big three go under UAW? You lose.

      The UAW should start realizing that when companies go bankrupt, people are going to lose their jobs. Just because the UAW thinks they are entitled to a job, doesn't mean they get one.

      As Taylor (http://money.cnn.com/2008/10/14/news/companies/gmwoes_taylor.fortune/index.htm?postversion=2008101509) points out, if GM declares bankruptcy, not only will they have the 800lb gorilla in the room to negotiate lower wages, but Ford and Chrysler will probably quickly follow.

      Gettlefinger should realize that the only way he can stem UAW losses is to approach the big three before the big three approach him. The longer things go down the tubes, the worse it will be for the UAW.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "The UAW should start realizing that when companies go bankrupt, people are going to lose their jobs."

        Oh, the members fully realize that, they're just counting on that job being someone elses down the line.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The real inefficiency is in the multiple layers of management, many more than offshore competitors. Decisions take so long the resulting product is obsolete when announced. Union and non union overhead is so high, old tooling runs ancient designs, such as the Chevy V8 while more modern product is available elsewhere.
      And what does Chrysler have that anybody wants, that's available elsewhere already?
      • 6 Years Ago

      And the United Buggy-Whip Workers Union was against the horseless carriage, as well.

      Is there any bureaucracy of the face of this planet more irrelevant than the UAW?
      • 6 Years Ago
      You all talk down about the UNION but NOT ONE word about the C.E.O.'s who put us in the place we are in. They are the ones who say what,when and how we build. Thats why we have what we have on the market,all big TRUCKS and CARS.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The UAW will have to give back what they have stolen from the Big Three's shareholders over the last 71 years. In 1937, Thomas Murphy mediated an agreement to stop a Strike against GM. Doing so gave the monoploy to the UAW and the rest is history.

      - I think that the UAW will be have their back to the wall before any actions is taken , including filing under Chapter 11.

      - The US government will help and will not let bankruptcy happen for obvious reasons. People withdraw their money out of the Banks and mutual funds like there is no tomorrow since Lehman went under. Whatever Alex Taylor III from fortune says, why on earth would you buy a car from Detroit if all the big Three go under?

      - With the help coming, hopefully from a Democrat government, many concessions wil be asked. This is called equality of sacrifice. Any sacrifice is better than a Wall-Mart job nowadays.

      • 6 Years Ago
      Unions are for protecting workers from bad companies and policies, not for ensuring that someone will forever have a $30/hr job that involves putting screws into a dashboard. I believe that the UAW needs to take more than 50% blame for the U.S. auto industry being in the tank because they have such ridiculous contracts for doing a no skill job.

      Power company linemen that put their lives on the line everyday climbing poles need unions for safety, but the same can't be said for UAW workers. It isn't a skill to work on an assembly line because you do the same thing hundreds of times per day and your brain never has to even wake up to get that accomplished. Maybe this economy crunch will finally get the UAW abolished and the U.S. can get back to making good and not have to spend billions on pensions and healthcare for people that do a job requiring no more skill than a fast food cook.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Loss of union jobs+ Loss of money to unions= The union will have to cut back there "workers". Do the math!
      • 6 Years Ago
      The way I see it: the unions are The main reason the American automakers are in this mess to begin with - the bloated costs of building a car in a UAW plant means the automaker has to cut corners in the product to be competitive on price, and the UAW's attitude over the last 50 years has been nothing more than the thug mentality of "do what I say, or else!"
      • 6 Years Ago
      If the union is so worried about keeping jobs, why don't they go into the car business (or buy Chrysler) and try building/selling cars people want to buy? There ya go, problem solved! LOL
        • 6 Years Ago
        1) that would make sense. when does the union do things that make sense big picture

        2) then they wouldnt be able to blame others for their problems and push others to carry their load.

        3) The union thrives on an us-them mentality and makes their money off the workers and the mgmt.

        why consult when you know what they are going to say?
        fewer workers equals less money and less leverage.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I think it would make sense for them to buy 10%-12% in Chrysler in order to stabilize the company.
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