As you read this, there are about 3,000 unionized workers -- down from about 15,000 two years ago -- employed by the Detroit 3 getting paid, despite the fact that they aren't working. While it's nice for America's automakers to have access to a talent-pool of available workers, it's also a major financial drain on an industry that's already reeling from a distinct lack of profits. And with new cutbacks and layoffs being announced almost daily, these "job banks" are increasingly tough to justify, even for the UAW. It's always been a bit of a competitive disadvantage, at least on paper, as non-UAW competitors like Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Hyundai do not keep such job banks. To ease Detroit's transition from bloated, money-losing corporations to lean "right-sized" competitors, UAW Prez. Ron Gettelfinger has brought up the job banks and their possible elimination. Will this be a part of the overall plan to become competitive that the Detroit 3 bring to Congress? We'll find out soon enough.

[Source: Wall Street Journal]