The numbers for the UK car
industry in April point to a 50% drop in production, and factories that aren't shut down completely are being run at glacial paces. After closing its Swindon, England plant for four months, the choice Honda
gave workers there fit the template of the times: take a pay cut or else 490 of you will be let go. The workers voted for the 3% drop in wages, while management gets a 5% reduction.
While everyone waits -- and prays -- for the scrappage scheme
to show some results, the move keeps hundreds of people on the job. The workers will also get six extra days of leave, which could be a mixed blessing, but it's better than being out of work, which isn't.