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    August 19, 2006

Bruce Baumhower will hold a discussion on WTVG 13 this Sunday August 20th at 10:00 AM. - Bruce Baumhower will hold a discussion on WTVG 13 this Sunday August 20th at 10:00 AM. Topic of concern ...Jeep's future competition with $5000 Chinese SUV's.

I hope he gives Dan Henneman a pat on the back for exposing the total incompetent vehicle launches forced on the Jeep membership. That took courage Dan good job!!! Some 1600 engineering problems were exposed early in the Wrangler launch by the UAW launch teams. My understanding is they were lost or disregarded to the disgust of the hourly UAW Teams. We all depend on these vehicles for our livelyhood and to fund our retirement. Don't blame the UAW for these screwed up launches.

posted by EYESWIDESHUT to business at 5:15 P.M. EST     (17 Comments)


Comments ...


Topic of concern ...Jeep's future competition with $5000 Chinese SUV's.

I saw on TV today that the first Chinese imports failed both safety and emissions standards and will not make it to the US market in 2007. They're shooting for 2008 now. These are $10,000 economy cars. You've got to figure any SUV they produce will be double that price. They're coming, and nothing is going to stop it.

Look on the bright side, George Bush and Ted Kennedy are going to match any willing Mexican worker with any available job in the USA. Then, they're going to send their Social Security checks down to Mexico after they retire. The Service Employees Union and the AFL-CIO love the idea too. Maybe you can hire a Mexican to mow your yard and use unemployment checks for money to pay 'em.

posted by YakRider at 07:52 P.M. EST on Sat Aug 19, 2006     #



The Chinese are building a Plant In Oklahoma...producing a copy cat version of the BMG...possibly they will build a SUV in the USA...???

-EyesWideShit-Personally I found comments in The Blade Article, Thursday... http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060817/BUSINESS02/608170346 confusing...

We have a...

A Team Leader speaking of all the "TRAINING"...stressing there will be "NO RECALLS" with our Toledo Built Vehicles...also...Corporation spokes person speaking the Launch is going "no worse than any Launch"...then...there's Dan's comments...all NEGATIVE..."Poor Quality"..."Workers under Pressure"...

Personally, my opinion...Dan's comments were counter productive for the Toledo Built Product Line...seems he may have thought so too after reading in print what he had said...with Friday's article in the Blade...his comments on a much lighter note...stating..."mechanics repair each vehicle before shipping"...we ship "quality vehicles"... http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060818/BUSINESS02/608180346

Seems comments of a Negative may scare the Public off...we need Toledo Jeep to have a future...

posted by MARIELORA at 10:25 P.M. EST on Sat Aug 19, 2006     #



correction to above post...Chinese will be building "MG" copy cat English Version...

NOT BMG...MG...sorry!

posted by MARIELORA at 10:28 P.M. EST on Sat Aug 19, 2006     #



Yakrider says,"Look on the bright side, George Bush and Ted Kennedy are going to match any willing Mexican worker with any available job in the USA".

I agree seems the REPUBLICRATS are all a bunch of Corporate Whores. Your vote doesn't count, only the Benjamins in your wallet are what they want. These people are the worst of the worst, just look at what they've done to this country. Look at these twin Deficits in both trade and government. How can anyone in there right mind think for a second we as a nation are headed in the right direction. Oh sure, I could spout off facts and figures to prove my point of view like some childish debate on an AM talk station. Why should I... just look around... what does your gut tell you?

posted by EYESWIDESHUT at 07:37 A.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



Bruce will tell you , if asked, and perhaps even volunteer that Ohio automakers face an uphill climb in the competition field because of the number of union retirees who are on the books, while the foreign companies do not have anybody in that category. In fact, EVERY auto built in the USA carries a $2,000 price tag before it even rolls off the assembly line just to cover the retirees budget. Not a bad thing, just a fact.
posted by tiger at 10:16 A.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



How could I be so wrong!OOPS... my bad...damn it! How could I be so wrong! Dan, Dan, Dan, between you and me... I still like that streak of independence. Now let me get my mind right the UAW will still be around growing stronger with these new members as nurses and Government workers etc. I didn't here mention auto workers, what will become of them?
posted by EYESWIDESHUT at 02:02 P.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



Look at these twin Deficits in both trade and government.

The trade deficit isn't nearly as bad as you think it is. Take a look at this graph for trade deficit data from 2004. http://www.census.gov/indicator/www/ustrade.html The trade deficit is one of the most meaningless set of numbers out there if you don't take a look at the broader economic environment we find ourselves in at that moment. From that graph you'll see that we continue to increase the value of exports despite the growing deficit. That's good. That means the deficit is being created by increased consumption, not decreased production. The deficit we find ourselves with is largely due to our very healthy consumer-driven economy. We eat, drink, and play more now than ever and we get a significant portion of those goods from overseas. In fact, contrary to popular belief, the US trade deficit actually decreases in times of economic depression. For proof take a look at this graph: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:USTrade1991-2005.png and http://www.worldfuturefund.org/wffmaster/Charts-HTML/image-b/trade_files/traded12.gif

Note the decreased trade deficits around 1990-1991 and 2000-2001. Both were times of recessions. A healthy US economy equates to an increasing trade deficit while a shrinking US economy equates to decreasing trade deficits. I'll take the former any day of the week, and I think you would too.

The trade deficit data and the typical analysis by most Americans is one more example of a detrimental populist platform pushed by labor. Labor has keyed onto that number because it sounds bad, even though it isn't bad.

Now the government's budget deficit.....I agree with you there.

posted by HeyHey at 03:53 P.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



I agree seems the REPUBLICRATS are all a bunch of Corporate Whores. Your vote doesn't count, only the Benjamins in your wallet are what they want. These people are the worst of the worst, just look at what they've done to this country. Look at these twin Deficits in both trade and government. How can anyone in there right mind think for a second we as a nation are headed in the right direction. Oh sure, I could spout off facts and figures to prove my point of view like some childish debate on an AM talk station. Why should I... just look around... what does your gut tell you?


You are exactly right. My gut tells me, in spite of all the happy bullshit talk, that we're on the verge of an economic disaster of 1930's proportions. Anyone who believes that putting team Reid/Pelosi in charge of Congress will fix the situation is proof of the triumph of hope over experience.

posted by YakRider at 09:07 P.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



What exactly points you to saying that? Just your opinion? I don't understand this doom and gloom from people over the economy. Almost all economic indicators (unemployment rate, employment numbers, incomes, GDP growth, inflation, etc) are somewhere between good and excellent. We may have another recession, but to say we'll have a depression is way off base. I seriously doubt we'll ever see a 1930s style depression because our economy is now orchestrated by the Federal Reserve Board. They can lower and raise interest rates to keep inflation, growth, and the money supply in check. That combined with the uncoupling of our monetary supply to tangible gold assets during the 70s has produced an extraordinarily resilient economy. Neither of these things were true during the 1920s and 30s, and was the primary reason everything collapsed.

Take a historical look back at all the US recessions over time. What you'll find is that over the course of time our recessions have become fewer in number, and when they do occur they are merely blips. The 2000-2001 recession was one of the smallest in history, and some have even argued it wasn't a recession. The previous recession ten years earlier was much the same way...relatively short lived and not very deep. While the Fed hasn't made recession extinct it has done an excellent job of putting them on the endangered species' list.

Again, I ask you what evidence and/or logic do you use to say a recession is imminent?

posted by HeyHey at 09:38 P.M. EST on Sun Aug 20, 2006     #



What exactly points you to saying that? Just your opinion? I don't understand this doom and gloom from people over the economy. Almost all economic indicators (unemployment rate, employment numbers, incomes, GDP growth, inflation, etc) are somewhere between good and excellent.

1. Household debt is at astronomical levels. The new bankruptcy law insures debtors cannot easily recover.

2. Real wages for most Americans are, and have been, stagnant in spite of good gains in productivity.

3. We've got another Fed Chairman who, like Don Quixote, insists on fighting imaginary inflation. How much longer until the Fed chokes off growth and/or causes housing prices to drop into free fall?

4. Our balance of trade accounts are totally out of sync. We're importing a trillion dollars worth of things more than we export.

5. The Federal Government's spending is totally out of control and we're borrowing money at an incredible rate. State and Local Governments continue to grow at unsustainable rates.

6. We've got a Parliament of whores (both parties) representing us in Washington. Nothing can get done, no matter how pressing the need, for the good of the country.

7. The nation has been invaded from the south by 12,000,000 to 25,000,000 (depending on whose numbers you believe) largely uneducated, impoverished, migrant workers who are breaking the back of our public hospitals and school systems, not to mention depressing wages. What's the Bush/Kennedy solution ... Make 'em all citizens.

8 . Gas is $3 a gallon and we're one natural disaster, or revolution, away from truly incredible prices at the pump ... If we can even get it at all.

9. The cost of health care is becoming unaffordable even for the insured.

10. Social Security and Medicare are insolvent ... Baby boomers, by and large, don't have a pot to piss in nor a window to throw it out of. Just what are they going to retire on?

Take your pick, any one, or combination, of the above WILL eventually kick us over the edge.

posted by YakRider at 02:14 P.M. EST on Mon Aug 21, 2006     #



YakRider your right on task and yes I will take my pick from the above.
The midwest hasn't factored in the coming lay-offs of the big three that will dump another 30,000 + middleclass auto workers in the mix. Not to mention the support of other small suppliers to the big three which is another huge number. Most are located in the midwest and will cause a further erosion of tax receipts to the governments of the midwest. And mean while the whores in government talk about flag burning and gay marriage, go figure!
While all this is going on the federal deficit is averaging 300+ billion a year which is not true add another 175 billion from baby boomers social security receipts that the whores in congress have been spending as fast as their dirty hands can dole it out to the special interests over the past 50 years. Thats 450 Billion a year. Remember Al Gore's LOCK BOX all bull sh%t not happening. Then who would have thought the corporate whores would steal middleclass pensions NOW THAT TAKES BALLS. What the hell are you going to do with all these penniless old people! They don't give a damn they got yours and they're living large. I could go on and on about The Whores in Government , but what depresses me more are the morons who believe all their bull sh%t at election time. http://www.ohio.com/mld/ohio/news/state/15264692.htm">Beacon Journal | 08/13/2006 | Ohio No. 1 -- in job losses

posted by EYESWIDESHUT at 06:34 P.M. EST on Mon Aug 21, 2006     #



Katrina cleanup and reconstruction efforts in New Orleans are notably being supplied with illegal immigrant labor for the past 11 months, while 25% of those workers who are still Katrina-homeless or -displaced are unemployed. THAT is a prototype of the future America, and THAT is one more indicator to add to Yakkie's list of what exactly is wrong with the modern economy. When an economy runs on entrenched class warfare, nothing good will ever happen thereafter, and it's all too certain that socio-economic catastrophes will occur as a result.

The economic picture promoted by HeyHey and his ilk is the one that concentrates on yuppies, corporations and the rich. We need never be concerned for these classes since they can take care of themselves. It's the middle class itself that's in distinct and unwarranted danger. Despite a recent absurd statement to the contrary by Joe "Republican" Lieberman, the Liebermans' combined income of $365K does NOT make them "middle class" -- such an income places them in the top 1% of the nation. Yet his propagandistic attitude is pervasive, in that the wealthy, corporate and otherwise-privileged continue to view themselves as being the nation's middle class, hence deserving of tax breaks, market focus, government bailouts, etc.

At any rate, contrary to HeyHey's assertion, America is spending itself poor by all this wealth flowing out of the nation in exchange for non-constructive consumption (primarily, energy and "cheap plastic Chinese SHIT"), so the trade deficit most assuredly DOES matter when more and more of the credit-worthy set end up unable to pay their bills. Then, the party then progressively stops and the real depth of the current Depression will be reached. Toledo is in a bona fide Depression and it is a prototype for much of the rest of the nation in the years to come as this Depression slowly expands to those areas. (As an example of the Depression around here, Toledoans generally don't dare quit their jobs since it takes months to years to find a suitable replacement for it. Toledo is the only place I've ever seen that had such a socio-economic method.)

For Toledo's working class (particularly the working poor), HeyHey's commentary is so wrong-headed and propagandistic that it's just laughable. You can't run an economy by just selling to the rich (and the "pre-rich" -- which is the credit-worthy middle class which is rapidly destroying its own credit-worthiness with a decade-long spending spree). You can't run a business by demanding 5% growth each and every year, no matter what. You can't have a middle class that literally spends like there is no tomorrow. Etc. Sensible economics was never revoked. In order to secure itself, the middle class has (as always) had to save money, spend wisely, and never ever expect to be "rich".

In short, the economic indicators for the middle class and the working class are terrible. The economic indicators for the yuppies, the wealthy and the corporations are fantastic. Now, if we could only return to having the wealthy and corporate pay their share of taxes, we'd have a civilization again!

posted by GuestZero at 01:26 A.M. EST on Wed Aug 23, 2006     #



UAW IN CRISIS?
Ford buyout plan chills UAW locals
It's a death blow if workers aren't replaced, official says
BY SARAH A. WEBSTER
FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER

August 23, 2006

A local UAW president said he and his southeast Michigan peers oppose efforts by Ford Motor Co. to eliminate thousands of jobs with buyouts, unless the automaker pledges to replace many of those workers -- even at lower wages.

That position could present a stumbling block as Ford tries to fix its money-losing North American operations.

About 40 local UAW presidents and other regional union officials gathered in Taylor on Tuesday to discuss the possibility that Ford will offer buyouts to hourly workers at all of its U.S. plants.

Workers and investors are eager to see a sweeping job reduction program, which could save Ford billions in labor expenses.

But some union leaders say the deal effectively could be a death blow to the UAW, which has been losing membership for decades, or at least to some locals.

"I don't call them buyouts -- I call them sellouts," said Mario Guerreso, president of UAW Local 245, which represents more than 2,500 Ford workers at various facilities in Dearborn, such as the research and engineering center.

"We are fast approaching extinction. ... When you accept those buyouts, those jobs are gone."

The UAW already has lost 35,000 members at General Motors Corp., under its attrition program this year. If Ford had a similar 30% acceptance rate for its 82,000 hourly workers in the United States, about 25,000 workers could leave the company -- and the union's membership rolls.

Officials at Ford in Dearborn and UAW headquarters in Detroit did not want to comment for this story.

Although local presidents will have virtually no control over whether Ford offers the buyouts, they can try to lobby Bob King, the UAW vice president who negotiates with Ford on national matters, such as a potential buyout package.

The presidents also can advise and influence workers' decisions.

UAW membership has been dropping even without the buyouts, from its peak of 1.5 million to the current figure of just under 600,000.

But some fear that a rapid exodus of Ford UAW members could force cost-cutting and possibly even consolidation at UAW locals around metro Detroit, where Ford's operations are concentrated. Union budgets are based on members' dues.

Guerreso, for example, estimated his local would lose $12,000 a month if just 50 of his members took buyouts.

Consequently, he said he and other union leaders facing similar situations would only support a buyout program if Ford agrees to replace -- in some fashion -- workers who leave.

He would like to see Ford replace every worker who leaves with another worker, or, at the very least, consider replacing every two workers who leave with one worker.

"Even if they were thinking of bringing them in at a lower pay scale, or a two-tier pay system, I wouldn't have any problem with that," he said.

Other UAW local presidents who attended the meeting did not return calls for comment, so it's unclear how many local union leaders oppose buyouts.

"The other chairman and presidents share my values," Guerreso said. "If they're going to replace, it's good. If they're not, it's not good. What we're doing is we're going to lose our strength in numbers."

Workers who are eager to retire early or move on to careers less turbulent than those in the domestic auto industry say they are upset with their union leaders for taking this stance.

After news broke Monday that Ford was considering company-wide buyouts, several workers called the Free Press to complain that that some union leaders were blocking the process.

Worry at truck plants

Although many workers were focused on talk of the buyouts, hourly workers at truck plants have been speculating about how Ford might reconfigure its truck production when it revises the Way Forward turnaround plan in September.

Industry-wide, sales of light trucks, a category that includes SUVs, pickups and vans, is off 10.6%. But truck sales at Ford are off 16.4% this year.

Ford already had plans to close the Norfolk Assembly Plant in Virginia, which builds the F-150, and the Twin Cities Assembly Plant in St. Paul, Minn., which builds the Ford Ranger pickup.

But last Friday, Ford announced it would build 21% fewer cars and trucks during the last three months of the year then it did a year ago. Most of the production cuts this year, 17%, would be of trucks, leaving many to speculate that Ford needs to cut even more truck capacity.

In Louisville, Ky., where Louisville Assembly builds the Ford Explorer and Mercury Mariner and Kentucky Truck builds the F-Series Super Duty pickups, workers have been worried that production of the midsize SUVs could be moved to another Ford facility. Sales of the new Explorer are down 33% this year, leaving some to wonder whether Ford needs to dedicate an entire plant to building the vehicle.

After the production cuts were announced, Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson told the Associated Press that state and local officials wanted to meet with Ford executives "to do all we can to keep Ford -- and Ford jobs -- in Kentucky."

Two Michigan plants have been speculated as beneficiaries of any possible shift in truck production:

Dearborn Truck, Ford's assembly plant at its centerpiece Rouge manufacturing facility. The flexible plant is capable of building nine different models off three vehicle platforms, but it only builds the Ford F-150 and Lincoln Mark LT full-size pickups.

Michigan Truck, home of the new Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator.

"The launch is going a lot slower than they planned," said Mark Rose, 31, of Newport, who works on the assembly at Michigan Truck. "I hear it's between us and Kentucky, fighting for another vehicle."

Rocky Comito, president of Local 862 in Louisville, which represents workers at Louisville Assembly and Kentucky Truck, did not want to comment on speculation about plant closures.

He did say that chairmen representing the two Louisville plants have requested buyouts from Ford.

Contact SARAH A. WEBSTER at 313-222-5394 or swebster@freepress.com.

posted by EYESWIDESHUT at 05:49 P.M. EST on Wed Aug 23, 2006     #




"Even if they were thinking of bringing them in at a lower pay scale, or a two-tier pay system, I wouldn't have any problem with that," Guerreso said!


Someone...please explain the SOLIDARITY in that statement! I had always believed the UAW's FOUNDATION was built on EQUAL PAY FOR EQUAL WORK...

posted by MARIELORA at 06:01 P.M. EST on Wed Aug 23, 2006     #



$10 an hour, 4,000 apply

Many ex-autoworkers seek work at lesser wages

Louis Aguilar / The Detroit News

STERLING HEIGHTS -- Six years ago, Fred Hibbard, 46, was making $22.50 an hour as a machinist in a tool and die shop.

On Thursday, he was among some 2,000 job-seekers who lined up for a chance at a $10-an-hour assembly job with no benefits with a French auto parts supplier. The jobs include medical benefits and 401(k) options.

Faurecia SA, which has facilities in four Metro Detroit communities, drew an estimated 4,000 people, many of them former auto workers like Hibbard, over the two days of its job fair Wednesday and Thursday, a sign of the times in a state where the unemployment rate hovers at 7 percent.

The long line of job applicants Thursday snaked through a city park outside the Sterling Heights Parks and Recreation Center, the site of Faurecia's job fair. It was just around the corner from where Hibbard used to work.

"That tool and die shop is dead," he said. "And now, I could really use this job. Ten dollars an hour is a lot better than living on your 401(k)."

Out of 17 job applicants queried by The News on Thursday, eight of them once had auto factory jobs that offered higher hourly wages and health benefits; 14 currently have jobs that pay less than $10 an hour; 11 have children; and only two have health insurance.

Many said they wouldn't have considered taking a $10 an hour job just a few years ago.

But times have changed in Michigan, with an unemployment rate among the highest in the nation and high-paying factory jobs dwindling by the month.

"I've pretty much given up trying to get a job that pays $20 an hour," said Pebble VanConant, a veteran toolmaker who was making that kind of money five years ago. Her firm closed, she said, because the company kept losing work to Chinese and Mexican firms willing to do the same jobs at a much lower rate.

The rest of the story http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060825/AUTO01/608250354/1148/AUTO01

posted by EYESWIDESHUT at 10:16 A.M. EST on Sun Aug 27, 2006     #



Your vote doesn't count, only the Benjamins in your wallet are what they want.
Are you looking for the Benjamins' in anyone else's wallet? Do you have another (Big Rally) coming up on the 28th, of August?

posted by Bbcmjeep43 at 11:36 A.M. EST on Sun Aug 27, 2006     #



Even at $10/hr, you can eventually save enough money to rent a U-Haul and get the fuck out. I've been watching Jerl Machine hire for a while, and if my anecdotes are any indication, they'll pay Hibbard about what he'd expect. Of course, he'd have to MOVE.

I have sympathy for those who want to work near their home. But the jobs and/or the wages have fled, then you have to follow them.

posted by GuestZero at 08:36 P.M. EST on Sun Aug 27, 2006     #



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