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Who is at fault for stalling the U.S. automakers' bailout package?

ChoicePercentVisualVotes
Congress 19%
183
Auto executives 29%
270
President George W. Bush 8%
80
I'm glad it's stalled 42%
396
929 total votes

Comments

1 DoctorGonzo (728 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

This question is so moronic on so many levels that I don't even want to vote.
The term "stalling" seems to shift the blame away from the industry and by listing the execs as a choice you shift all blame away from labor. How typical.
It's not a bailout. The money had already been apropriated some time ago.
In one year the automakers will be in the same damn position they are in now. What is going to change fundamentally to keep them going beyond this current financial boost? Tell me. A new car model that will bring them back? Laughable and very short sighted.
What in the hell are dubya and congress doing as choices? How can you even fathom they are to blame for any of this? The CEO's of the big 3 should have sold the private jets they flew to D.C. in and raised money that way.
This industry's sense of entitlement makes me ill.

You who still believe this is 1970 are bringing me way down man.

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2 Tugboat (759 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Congress to US auto execs: "Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on our part."

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3 jethead11 (139 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Don't forget to add the unions as part of the blame. When Toyota and Honda workers in the U.S. get paid half of what the UAW workers get paid, that is a problem. And then the UAW actually says that they are tired of "givebacks". I hate to say it, but these guys need to lose their jobs and see how marketable their skills really are without a union to extort money from their employer for them. I hope they can find someone to pay them $71 an hour for what they do, but I doubt they will. To paraphrase our President-elect's Pastor, "the big 3 (and the unions) chickens are coming home to roost".

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4 valleyred (1097 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Add Unions to the list and I'd change it over my vote: I'm glad it is stalled.

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5 JeffLebowski (953 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Doc,

I feel you on the question itself and trust you weren't surprised to see the like on these pages. That said, the labor contract signed in '07 stipulates that responsibility for retiree healthcare will lie with the UAW rather than with GM beginning in 2010, this will take away some $30 billion in burden. We are talking about a bridge loan to help cover expenses in 2009 that will also by all accounts require the companies to not only pay back the loan but also share in future profits.

It was absolutely the right thing for lawmakers to require these companies to present a viable business plan prior to securing any type of loan from the government as one thing these companies can't be accused of in their current state is efficiency. It will be equally wise to address executive bonuses as I suspect they will. GM in particular must start by cutting/consolidating unnecessary lines of business as they did with Oldsmobile, use to its advantage the labor contract and absolutely bank on the fact that the government will add incentives through tax cuts for purchase of economical domestic vehicles.

Nothing is f**ked here, man.

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6 pj (80 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Our going in to wars were acts of action of stupidity
by Bush & Cheney & now we suffer. I am a republican.
Regardless; what is said & printed, we are all @ fault.
There is no way to have a strong economy with on going
wars, it just does not happen.
Too shift into high gear is sacrifice; continually giving
ice cream benefits is costly

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7 DoctorGonzo (728 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Dude,
I hope you are right. 30 Billion dollars in savings seems a little far fetched though.

"While GM is only saving $1 billion a year in health care spending under the agreement, the tentative deal will reduce costs on its annual profit-and-loss statement by $3 billion on a pre-tax basis." - Automaker wins pact with union to slash billions in healthcare costs for union members, retirees.
October 17, 2005: 6:58 PM EDT

Granted this article is 3 years old, and I have not done much more reseacrh than that. I just cannot fathom a scenario where GM is not in the same fiscal emergency it is now in 12-18 months, even with the appropriations. The business model is flawed and even without the current healthcare costs, it apperas many believe the big 3 are in trouble for the future. Stock prices refelct what future cash flows are expected from a company. At $2+ per share and the knowledge of this healthcare cost shift, it still does not look good.
This contract doesn't take effect until 2010, the new cars don't hit the market until late 2010, there are still exhorbitant legacy and wage costs that cannot be shouldered. If this money was really all that was needed to secure the industry there would not have been so many walls to go through in order to get it, and the stock prices would not be so low.

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8 babs68 (58 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Wow...Unions are a killer. They were great for back in the day when there were no OSHA/EEOC/Etc. Now they still take dues have less power and cost companies millions with stalled talks. I have moved to the South and found that Honda/Kia everytime they produce a car they profit $400.00 per car, and still make quality cars at an affordable price. However; everytime one of the big three produces a car it cost them $1000.00 per car, and should I go on about the lack luster quality and affordability!
The difference...The South plant's pay well, but I guarantee Joe Blow the floor sweeper "ain't" makin $25.00hr to sweep floors just because he is in a union. Oh and another thing if they play sick they use a PTO if they have none left then they take it without pay. Incentive...get up and work. Now if you have an ailing child or need more than your typical 3days off..then you use the FMLA. W/ AFLAC...Not paid from the companies...the benefit? The more the company saves the more money in my pocket w/ a FAT bonus check in my pocket! No Union Dues to pay...Northerners that are Union-bred better wake up. Companies are no longer willing to support dead beat employees..! We cannot compete w/ countries that pay employees less and receive more!

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9 dmets (575 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

GM workers, who were hired in since the last talks are paid 14 an hour, not 25. There is also a cap on how much a person can make on hour. So this worker will not be making 80 thousand a year, they will make half that over years of working there. Yes there are people who do make alot more, but GM did make steps in the right direction with hiring pay, and caps on top hourly wages.
I just find it funny that the CEOs and top management in banks are who screwed them all up, and they did get the bailouts. Why? Cause they benefitted the governmant. But the car industry gets jack crap, cause the governmant gets nothing out of it. It's like a slap in the face and a scr*w you to the people. I think they do need to approve the bailout if proper steps are taken to make the necessary cuts by the 3 automakers!

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10 babs68 (58 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

dmets..although I understand and agreeto some extent. My thoughts are that there are plenty more that are getting over on the Generous Motors way of thinking than, are not. I think that bankruptcy is a good thing for the generous 3. Why? It will allow them to re-organize and get rid of bad debt, old operations habits, unions. They cannot continue to prosper w/ these unions or old habits plane and simple. How many years have the automakers had to re-tool towards energy effecient cars? 30yrs. Instead of re-tooling they would spend X amount of dollars to buy patents from local eng. college kids that had developed ways to make a more energy efficient car. With these patents locked away in the Big 3 basements it would prevent the american consumer from benefiting w/ cleaner and effecient cars. Why do you think that there are not of american cars in Europe/Mexico? They have helped feed the energy dependence on oil as well. Its' time for them to change there ways of thinking..plane and simple.
Wallstreet was just like the Big 3 Money Hungry...the only difference, if there was one... is that Wallstreet controls the loans for homes, cars, credit. The Big 3- really have nothing to offer or bring to the table?? Considering the fact that they have sent the majority of jobs offshore/Mexico they reallty screwed themselves. With no meat to bring to dinner the government sees no reason to give them any bread!

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11 bkdawg (5 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Note that most (if not all) of the $25 billion 'loan' to the Big 3 will go to the UAW! Not for day-to-day operations, but to the retirees of the UAW! Here's a link to the article:
http://www.thestreet.com/story/104490...

I for one am sick and tired of people thinking that they should have pensions and fully-paid benefits for the rest of their lives. If you owned a business and I worked for you for 30 years - you paid me right?? Then why do you still have to pay me until I live to be 90?? In reality, you could collect more in retirement then when you worked!

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12 JeffLebowski (953 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

dawg-They think they should have pensions and paid healthcare coverage because THAT WAS THE AGREEMENT. Like most people you fault the fortunate simply because you aren't one of them.

Doc-30 was the number I read. It is absolutely a big number but there are A LOT of people of advancing age included and healthcare costs continue to rise. You make a good point on stock price.

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13 bkdawg (5 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Lebowski-so you think it's okay for us as taxpayers to bail out basically the UAW? Look - I fault both the Big 3 and the UAW for this mess. But the UAW and it's workers need to realize that not one company out there can sustain what the Big 3 have to sustain with this agreement.

Did anyone bail out the steel mills when they were going down?? Is anyone bailing out Cicuit City? Steve and Barry's? The list goes on and on.

And actually I am one of the fortunate (just not in the UAW). I have a career that I am happy to be in and I get paid well doing it because I'm good at it.

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14 dmets (575 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

We are not bailing out anyone. The government is just using our money to bail people out. We have no choice in the matter!

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15 JeffLebowski (953 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Just commenting your words dawg: "I for one am sick and tired of people thinking that they should have pensions and fully-paid benefits for the rest of their lives." Your words. You seemed in saying that to be much more centered on the labor force than the labor union. When challenged you decide to elaborate and I can better appreciate your point-of-view.

Comparing GM, Ford or Chrysler to Circuit City is ridiculous -- there are hundreds of thousands of retailers and 3 domestic automakers. There were also many more steel manufacturers. Also we are talking about a bridge loan with opportunity for profit sharing at the back end, not a bailout...the media likes "bailout" because it boosts ratings through misinformation. If self-preservation is an instinct that you posses (ESPECIALLY in Y-town) you should support this loan because this country will grind to a halt if these companies have to shutter.

I'm finishing my coffee.

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16 aviationtech01 (2 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

well this is what you get with those so called free traders, nobody has yet said why are we in this mess in the first place, JOBS stupid, we can not keep letting companys ship jobs out of our country to china or were ever. These idiots in our government (republicans and democrats) have caused this disaster, screwing every american worker, don't think for one minute that if 3 million people lose their jobs form the big 3, how many of use will lose our jobs that are related to that industry from the cook at the local restaurant to the truck driver delivering the steel to the plant.
It's not a bailout anyway, it's a loan with a repayment schedule. that should have stipulations with it like, ceo pay no more than 5 times higher than the lowest payed employee, not stock options, no other bs. and that the big three have to make the cars here in the us that they sell here.
Remember this if it wasn't for the unions in this country fighting for what the got, i.e. 40hr workweek, healthcare, safety in the work place. you would be working in the old fashion sweatshops of the past, making little to nothing.

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17 dmets (575 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Just commenting your words dawg: "I for one am sick and tired of people thinking that they should have pensions and fully-paid benefits for the rest of their lives." Sounds like you are grouping all people who ever worked into there. You see my dad risked his life for 30 years, and I do believe that he deserves pension and benefits the rest of he life. He does pay alot for his benefits. Do you think that military people, firefighters, police officer should not get life long pensions and benefits? Do you think a person, including you, should have to work til they die? No! Believe me I think the GM retirees need to pay alot more then 10 dollars a month for insurance, but I you think in you put in the time, there should be perks to a life of service. These people put into a 401K. I mean if you want them to not have the benefits and pension, do you realize you, us, the tax payers will have to afford everything for them? I mean come on! Get serious, and realize they will end up on welfare, social security, and any type of public assistance.

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18 cambridge (3013 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Just a little perspective.

A new hire at Lordstown makes $14.00 per hour.

G.R. Wagoner Jr. made $15,000,000 in 2007.

That's 535 times what your "greedy neighbor" made.

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19 Shamus (6 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Forgive me for sounding socialist, but do we need so much capitolism that someone at the top of a company makes "535 times" what the guy just starting does? All three of those fat cats from gm, ford and chrysler, should have to give up the jets, and give up a years salary to help "stimulate" their busnesses. Let them see what supporting a family on even $14. an hour for a year feels like.

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20 dmets (575 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

I think I if I hear on the news or read in the paper correctly. Robert Nardelli, the current CEO of Chrysler, agreed to take that one dollar salary, if it can guarantee a bridge loan of approximately $7 billion for his company. At least he is doing something to try to get the money.

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21 stuckinOH (21 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Does The guy just starting out at $14/hr have the same responsibilities as the journeyman?, how about the foreman?, general foreman? The hourly worker goes home after his 8 hr shift and relaxes with his family. How much free time do you think the CEO has? How many millions of people is he responsible for? Spoken as a true Socialist! If the shareholders didn't apporve of his pay, he would be out, or at the very least his contract would be ammended! You people have got to get out of the "it's not fair-he makes more than me" routine. How much do you think Honda and Toyota CEOs make? For that matter, take any Fortune 500 company.
He probably deserves every dime, and if he chooses to spend it on a jet then so be it!

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22 stuckinOH (21 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

That being said I do not agree with the government bailing them out either. They should restructure under Chapter 11 protection and do as so many other companies have-emerge stronger. The bank bailout has turn into a varitible pig roast for all the pork that was involved. AIG should have never been bailed out when another branch of that company holds over a trillion in assets. Next the pizza place down the street will want a government bailout. Where will it end?

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23 babs68 (58 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

BK Dawg...I agree w/ you 1000% why should taxpayer monies pay for UAW benefits while there CEO's sit on high and fly there corporate jets and collect that ridiculous salary. I think not! I don't think that Lebowski get's it, and I am glad that you have a good career in Y-Town. One other thing I noticed was that you spoke common sense. Why should companies have to pay for our retirements? I am saving for my own through 401 and IRA's / Money market accounts. My company matches 4% and even if they didn't which most companies are starting not to do that no a days I would still save.
The comment made about, "If self-preservation is an instinct that you posses (ESPECIALLY in Y-town) you should support this loan because this country will grind to a halt if these companies have to shutter." I think that that comment needs to be more directed at the CEO's of the big three and the UAW president who went to DC cocky as all get out. They definately had "Self Preservation" in mind. I will stick to my guns let them file bankruptcy and re-organize/re-structure, and then come back. As far as the UAW President if his attitude is a representative of how his union members think then let the them lose...in today's times I have no tolerance for arrogance.

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24 cambridge (3013 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

stuckinOH:

You defend the right of a CEO to make $15,000,000 a year and fly around in corporate jets because its capitalism and that's his right. But when the common worker doesn't want to give back any more of their $14.00 an hour or their health and retirement benefits that GM agreed to they are greedy socialist.

In 2007 the CEO of GM made $5,000,000 more than in 2006. It must be because of what the great job he is doing.

I've never seen so many mean spirited people in my life than the one's that post in my home town paper. It seems as though that because some of you live miserable lives you want others to do the same.

Happy in California.

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25 cambridge (3013 comments) posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Gruump:

To lower that wage package by $30 an hour the members would have to give up pensions and health care for retires. Those are conditions that the union and the auto companies agreed to. Toyota hasn't been in the US long enough to have 700,000 retires to deal with yet.

Like I said the union and the auto makers had an agreement. Some seem to think its OK to agree to pensions and health care and when the time comes the company says, "No that's ours". Let me ask you a question. If you bought a home and signed a contract with the lender, made all your payments on time and fulfilled all of your obligations to the contract, would it be OK that when you make your final payment and the house is yours the lender says, "No the house is mine because banks are in financial trouble"? I assume you've paid into social security all your life. Would you mind not getting it because the government spent it elsewhere?

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26 JD010101 (137 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

UAW needs to make concessions and all workers need to mirror the pay of Honda USA workers. That will be the step in the right direction.

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27 cambridge (3013 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

I notice that you didn't mention that US auto executives should be compensated and build the same types of cars as Honda.

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28 cambridge (3013 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

The president of Honda Motors is Takeo Fukui. He shares a salary of 13 million with 36 board members.

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29 JD010101 (137 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

I'm glad you pointed that out. That would also be another great step forward for the US auto industry. Have the execs share a set amount. Use USA Honda as a business model. USA's model hasnt worked in years!

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30 tnmartin (234 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

There are some situations that have no good guys, and no good answers either. This is one.
I will shed no tears for the demise of the Big 3, or of the UAW either. The arrogance and entrenched stupidity of the management of GM and Ford is matched in kind by the thuggery, insolence, sloth, corruption, and avarice of the UAW, its members, officers, and hangers-on. A pox on the lot of them. Are the 'big dogs' of the companies overpaid? Most assuredly! So are most of the UAW 'workers' and their officers of that bunch of bandits even more so. Worse, perhaps, than the pay rates at least 3 times what the jobs are worth, are the idiotic work rules that the UAW, like its co-thieves in other unions, have long insisted on. To tax store clerks and beauticians in Fowler, Poland, and Columbiana in order to shore up the 'job bank' and the UAW thieves is so despicable as to be out of sight.
And yet,
For the dolts in the Congress to be involved is loathsome as well. They are largely to blame for all of this. Unconstitutional intrusion in aspects of most of American business and industry, including Davis-Bacon, the minimum wage, car design, etc. etc. etc. have created much of this. The collapse in the financial system stems directly from the CRA, Sarbanes-Oxley, and corruption of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, fomented largely by Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Bill Rubin, Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, and Jaimie Gorelick. For them to claim some sort of moral high ground in the rescue is something so astonishingly false as to be believable only in loony bins, or the Valley.

Let them all collapse together. A pox on them and their house.

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31 dawgalong (86 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/...

To OldManGrump and everyone else that comments in regard to the $70 an hour wage for American autoworkers, please go to the above so that your facts are correct. OldManGrump, as a passive reader of the comments page, I have always found your opinions insightfull and sensible (must have some Slovak in you), but this time I find that you are piling on a little bit with the other posters that obviously are writing with biased opinion instead of fact.

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32 tnmartin (234 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

Sigh. to doggy, going to MSNBC for reality, and Olbermann for *anything* requiring honesty, intelligence, or wisdom is a lot like going to an active landfill looking for breakfast. I believe in miracles, but that would be one. Talk about cherry-picking your favorite merchant of comforting lies!

I have not yet heard anyone say that the actual take-home wage for a UAW type is $70/hr (the actual number is closer to $73, actually), but the fact is that the actual per-hour COST of a UAW member in direct labor is about that. Which is, probably, about right. Sounds low, actually, as it does not take into account the imbecilic work rules that generally result in needing 3 people to do the work of 1. Having been there, I know whereof I speak. What you take home is only a fraction, often a small one, of what you cost the company. What does the company get in return?

Is anyone, anywhere, so utterly filled with intoxicants as to really believe that there are a host of line workers who are regularly returning $73/hour worth of value to the organization? Anyone? Because I have never, never seen it. I have seen some that did well, even at Packard and Lordstown, but the sluggards around them did their utmost to keep the average down.

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33 YSUgrad99 (200 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

Does anyone find it funny that the over paid auto worker wasn't one of the choices for the poll question?

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34 Nonsocialist (710 comments) posted 5 years, 9 months ago

Our bankrupt Federal government will bailout this mismanaged industry just as it has bailed out mortgage lenders. Then it will bail out multiple states now running huge deficits, and then other industries such as those in health care. It will due all this while spending money on expensive entitlements and pork, for the sole purpose of buying votes and maintaining power.

The question then will soon become, "Is our mismanaged and bankrupt government worth bailing out?" To those able to save our dying Nation, the answer will be "no" as it is broken beyond repair.

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