"Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

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Thread: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

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    "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Detroit Free Press
    September 30, 2019

    While the United Auto Workers strike against General Motors Co. plants stretches on, it's been business as usual here at Honda Motor Co.’s Marysville assembly.

    Celebrating its 40th year of production this month, the non-union plant has never had a work stoppage as it has pumped out two of the most popular vehicles in America: the Honda Accord sedan and CR-V SUV.

    Honda Marysville is not alone.

    Dozens of so-called foreign "transplants” — from Asian mainstream manufacturers to European luxury makers — have followed Honda’s model across the United States in recent decades. The influx has transformed America’s auto landscape with a cheaper, more flexible, non-union workforce model upping competitive pressure on unionized Detroit.

    Today, the Detroit Three automakers are an island of UAW production surrounded by foreign transplants that now make up 48% of U.S. vehicle production, according to the Ann Arbor-based Center for Automotive Research. That's up from just 17% in 2000. Non-union employment rose from 15% of the industry at the century's turn to 39% in 2013, according to the most recent Automotive News analysis.

    “Unions are not dead,” said East Lansing-based economist Patrick Anderson, who noted the strike is costing GM $25 million per day in lost profits. “But confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead. Unions are here to stay only if they are interested in the welfare of their employers as well as their workers.”

    The UAW says that non-union plants are at a disadvantage because union wages are better, the shops are safer, workers' rights are better represented and disciplinary actions are covered by a grievance procedure. But UAW efforts to organize foreign-owned auto plants in the United States have failed repeatedly, despite promises of contract protections and generally higher pay.

    In response to inquiries from The Detroit News, the union said: "As a matter of policy, the UAW does not comment on organizing plans and strategies." Still, compensation in UAW-represented auto plants trends higher nationwide than non-union shops.








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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    “But confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead. Unions are here to stay only if they are interested in the welfare of their employers as well as their workers.”
    The current "spat" between the UAW and General Motors certainly proves this point to be true.

    Both sides are going to have to realize that the calendar reads "2019" and not "1965". The propensity of start-ups to render salable copies of easier to produce electric vehicles (Tesla, Rivian, etc), is going to rock the automotive world in the next 10 years. The legacy manufacturers and the unions along for the ride had better adapt, sooner rather than later.




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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Unions are useless in this day and age. They only exist to protect lazy, disruptive employees who would be fired at any other job. If unions were concerned about their jobs, they would be pushing for more accountability by their workforce with compensation based on performance. At both the individual and corporate level. What works for non-union should go for union employees.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by Perian View Post
    The current "spat" between the UAW and General Motors certainly proves this point to be true.

    Both sides are going to have to realize that the calendar reads "2019" and not "1965". The propensity of start-ups to render salable copies of easier to produce electric vehicles (Tesla, Rivian, etc), is going to rock the automotive world in the next 10 years. The legacy manufacturers and the unions along for the ride had better adapt, sooner rather than later.




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    The number of high-ranking UAW officials convicted of stealing money from their members shows how out-of-step and corrupt the UAW is. Their confrontational and thug tactics need to go.

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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by TruckMan View Post
    Unions are useless in this day and age. They only exist to protect lazy, disruptive employees who would be fired at any other job. If unions were concerned about their jobs, they would be pushing for more accountability by their workforce with compensation based on performance. At both the individual and corporate level. What works for non-union should go for union employees.
    Really?

    I guess all the statistics that have been out there for the last 35 years about the shrinking middle class and how the effective wage for most blue-collar workers have dropped.

    Unions are NOT useless if they are used in the manner upon which they should be--which is to represent the workers for a particular company. Instead what we got was "I'm gonna get the best for me and not for you" and that phrase is used not just by unions, but, also by the companies who use those workers.

    Yes, it isn't 1965, but, in 2019 as in 1965 unions are just as important. There are plenty of graphs plotting this very thing which I'm sure you can find should you be interested enough to search for it.

    Then again, I'm sure you just have a wad of cash lieing around you can tap into to ensure this isn't happening to you. If so, then forget it, this just doesn't concern you.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by GMOwner View Post
    Really?

    I guess all the statistics that have been out there for the last 35 years about the shrinking middle class and how the effective wage for most blue-collar workers have dropped.

    Unions are NOT useless if they are used in the manner upon which they should be--which is to represent the workers for a particular company. Instead what we got was "I'm gonna get the best for me and not for you" and that phrase is used not just by unions, but, also by the companies who use those workers.

    Yes, it isn't 1965, but, in 2019 as in 1965 unions are just as important. There are plenty of graphs plotting this very thing which I'm sure you can find should you be interested enough to search for it.

    Then again, I'm sure you just have a wad of cash lieing around you can tap into to ensure this isn't happening to you. If so, then forget it, this just doesn't concern you.
    The UAW thinks that paying more than 4% of their healthcare cost along with paying more than $0 in premiums is akin to corporate greed. I think TruckMan is correct. Unions have become a cancer and are nothing even remotely like the original unions. I see what your saying but there is no way unions represent what you want them to represent.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by GMOwner View Post
    Yes, it isn't 1965, but, in 2019 as in 1965 unions are just as important.
    In the U.S., labor unions in 1965 were rent-seeking, violent, corrupt, parasitic entities that hindered business development among other things. In 2019, unions are still rent-seeking, violent, corrupt, parasitic entities that hinder business development among other things.

    The main difference between 1965 and 2019 is that unions are much more concentrated in the public sector now. Which makes their mere existence even more undesirable.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by Perian View Post
    The current "spat" between the UAW and General Motors certainly proves this point to be true.

    Both sides are going to have to realize that the calendar reads "2019" and not "1965". The propensity of start-ups to render salable copies of easier to produce electric vehicles (Tesla, Rivian, etc), is going to rock the automotive world in the next 10 years. The legacy manufacturers and the unions along for the ride had better adapt, sooner rather than later.

    .
    I think that GM understands that and I think they are preparing and adapting to that. I don't think the union gets it though...
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by GMOwner View Post
    Really?

    I guess all the statistics that have been out there for the last 35 years about the shrinking middle class and how the effective wage for most blue-collar workers have dropped.

    Unions are NOT useless if they are used in the manner upon which they should be--which is to represent the workers for a particular company. Instead what we got was "I'm gonna get the best for me and not for you" and that phrase is used not just by unions, but, also by the companies who use those workers.

    Yes, it isn't 1965, but, in 2019 as in 1965 unions are just as important. There are plenty of graphs plotting this very thing which I'm sure you can find should you be interested enough to search for it.

    Then again, I'm sure you just have a wad of cash lieing around you can tap into to ensure this isn't happening to you. If so, then forget it, this just doesn't concern you.
    Let me guess, a union made those graphs?
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    If you have a specialized and scarce skill, you obviously don't need a union. But if you have no specialty or your specialty is not scarce (which is the case with the vast majority of the workforce in manufacturing and lower-end services), then any one person can easily be replaced. So for those folks, there is value in collective bargaining. And don't point to the transplants as counter-examples because they pay just enough to keep the UAW away. If (the threat of) the UAW didn't exist, I'm willing to bet they will pay a lot less.

    That said, I suspect most dictionaries define "belligerent" as a synonym for the UAW. It's hard for any outsider to sympathize with that union, especially with the recent news. But let's not confuse the UAW for all unions. I suspect (or like to think) there are still some unions out there that know what they exist for.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by emh View Post
    That said, I suspect most dictionaries define "belligerent" as a synonym for the UAW. It's hard for any outsider to sympathize with that union, especially with the recent news. But let's not confuse the UAW for all unions. I suspect (or like to think) there are still some unions out there that know what they exist for.
    Any labor union affiliated with or supportive of AFL-CIO (UAW is among them), SEIU, NEA, or Teamsters is in the "belligerent, confrontational, obstructionist" category.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by emh View Post
    If you have a specialized and scarce skill, you obviously don't need a union. But if you have no specialty or your specialty is not scarce (which is the case with the vast majority of the workforce in manufacturing and lower-end services), then any one person can easily be replaced. So for those folks, there is value in collective bargaining. And don't point to the transplants as counter-examples because they pay just enough to keep the UAW away. If (the threat of) the UAW didn't exist, I'm willing to bet they will pay a lot less.

    That said, I suspect most dictionaries define "belligerent" as a synonym for the UAW. It's hard for any outsider to sympathize with that union, especially with the recent news. But let's not confuse the UAW for all unions. I suspect (or like to think) there are still some unions out there that know what they exist for.
    GM MUST point to transplants because they are direct competition. UAW needs to realize that GM doesn't exist in a bubble. As far as unskilled labor though, that is the way the world is headed and unions can't stop it. The middle class isn't dead, it's shifted towards jobs with more skills. We can't stop robots from taking these jobs just like McDonalds cashiers can't stop kiosks from taking there jobs. I would imagine if it were legal, the skilled jobs on the factory floor would form a separate union from those that provide unskilled labor.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by Clownzilla View Post
    GM MUST point to transplants because they are direct competition. UAW needs to realize that GM doesn't exist in a bubble. As far as unskilled labor though, that is the way the world is headed and unions can't stop it. The middle class isn't dead, it's shifted towards jobs with more skills. We can't stop robots from taking these jobs just like McDonalds cashiers can't stop kiosks from taking there jobs. I would imagine if it were legal, the skilled jobs on the factory floor would form a separate union from those that provide unskilled labor.
    Great points! I think this gets to the heart of the transition we are going through as a society. It's just not possible to have a good standard of living with just a high-school diploma any more and the minimum requirements keep going up. Even a BA is not the guarantee of a good job that it once was. But we still have generations of people with only those qualifications. What do you do with those folks? Let their standard of living go into free fall and tell them to suck it up? Promise them the old way will come back some day? Expect them all to retrain en masse in Machine Learning or healthcare? None of those are practical. It's one thing to know what the problem is. Finding solutions is a whole 'nother thing.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by emh View Post
    Great points! I think this gets to the heart of the transition we are going through as a society. It's just not possible to have a good standard of living with just a high-school diploma any more and the minimum requirements keep going up. Even a BA is not the guarantee of a good job that it once was. But we still have generations of people with only those qualifications. What do you do with those folks? Let their standard of living go into free fall and tell them to suck it up? Promise them the old way will come back some day? Expect them all to retrain en masse in Machine Learning or healthcare? None of those are practical. It's one thing to know what the problem is. Finding solutions is a whole 'nother thing.
    We are going to have to do something in the future like see a machine as actual labor that can be taxed and use that money to work on the displaced human labor somehow. I absolutely hate this solution but we can't stop technological progress. Any job without skill will eventually be lost to automation and there will be a lot of displaced labor. This is a problem that has always been there but with the onset of technologies like quantum computing, there are going to be A LOT of jobs a robot can do that we would of never thought possible.
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    Re: "Confrontational, obstructionist bargaining as a success strategy is dead."

    Quote Originally Posted by Clownzilla View Post
    We are going to have to do something in the future like see a machine as actual labor that can be taxed and use that money to work on the displaced human labor somehow. I absolutely hate this solution but we can't stop technological progress. Any job without skill will eventually be lost to automation and there will be a lot of displaced labor. This is a problem that has always been there but with the onset of technologies like quantum computing, there are going to be A LOT of jobs a robot can do that we would of never thought possible.
    We don't need to tax robots because if they increase profits (which they do, otherwise they won't be there) there are already ways to tax that. And I agree there's no point in trying to stop technology progress but we do have to manage progress to a rate that society can keep up with. I think that's where unions still have a role to play.

    FWIW, I'm not to worried about quantum computers taking away jobs. The only folks likely to lose their jobs to quantum are hackers, if we ever get to a point where quantum computers can hack our passwords easily, as expected. Even then, I suspect the displaced hackers will be gainfully employed exploiting those compromised passwords. Machine Learning is a whole different matter. If even 10% of the things people want to use ML for pan out, there will entire job categories that will disappear in a very short time.
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