Monday, 16 June 2008

Canadian autoworkers fight back - The Real News

Read more here....


KC said...

Im confused. So does the CAW want GM to continue producing trucks that--given current gas prices--no one wants? What do they propose GM do with the unpurchased trucks once they're built?

2600 layoffs seems like a small price to pay for finally getting North Americans moving away from big gas guzzlers.

Larry Hubich said...


Thank you for participating in this blog.

Actually, GM isn't going to stop building 1/2 ton trucks. They just want to build them in a cheap labour jurisdiction - like Mexico.

Farmers are not going to stop buying half tons - not as long as they need to haul parts and materials back and forth to the field. Construction workers and the trades are not going to stop buying trucks - you can't haul your tools and equipment in the back of a "Smart Car", a "Honda Civic" or a "Toyota Prius".

How many roughnecks do think are going to bounce back and forth between camp and the rigs in a Lexus?

How many tourists are going to haul that 5th wheel travel trailer down the highway behind a Chevy Cavalier?

Do you believe that home builders, city crews, gardeners, landscapers, delivery drivers, lumber yards, highways workers, miners, etc., etc., etc. will stop buying 1/2 ton trucks?

It's as much an issue of manufacturing vehicles that are more fuel efficient regardless of the size. The technology exists.

And if it really was about a change in the buying habits of consumers - GM would be re-tooling the plant and employing those 2600 highly trained and highly skilled workers manufacturing what consumers want.

KC said...

But they're not shutting down truck production--they're reducing it which will inevitably translate into job losses. GM sales plunged 30% in May after all.

Its time to deal with the economic reality that people just dont want GM vehicles in the volumes that they have previously--particularly in the larger vehicle market--rather than taking the myopic approach of preserving jobs.

Larry Hubich said...

KC, Your first paragraph is not accurate. According to the reports I've read, they (GM) are closing the truck plant in Oshawa. That means they are shutting down truck production at the Oshawa plant.

I haven't heard yet that they are proposing to convert the plant to one that produces some other type of vehicle.

Unknown said...

Once again, UNDERPRODUCTIVE, OVERPAID, union members get a dose of the REAL WORLD. If I was GM, I'd just close the plant a year and a half early. These idiots have priced themselves out of the marketplace. Viva la Mexico! The Judge said NO UNION THUGS ALLOWED!
A victory for Justice in Canada. Protesting against GM for PISS POOR NEGOTIATIONS on behalf of their own leadership. The membership should be calling for the head of everyone involved on behalf of the union. Buzz 'n the Boys SCREWED THE POOCH BAD ON THIS ONE!
Also, the idea that GM would be continuing the Truch with the worst gas mileage in the world is ridiculous. I mean, EVEN GM figured it out. BUZZ THE LIBERAL should've known better too.

BDT said...

I for one will not purchase any vehicle that would put a nickle into Buzz Hargrove's pants. I have met several UAW workers who can not talk enough about how they rake over their employer. Between overtime scams, sick days taken at peak turnover times that result in double and triple overtime for coworkers.... tons of other stuff that they laugh about doing.
Well all the run up in costs are finally coming home to roost!

But a vehicle from any non union manufacturer. The quality is better and the employees are happier. Nissan, Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Acura, Infiniti.... there are tons of them and Buzz doesn't get a nickle.


Larry Hubich said...

Thank you for participating in this blog.

The truth of the matter is - labour costs associated with the building of an automobile are just a tiny fraction of what the company charges you or me when we buy that shiny new vehicle off the dealer's lot. In fact, the average labour to build your average vehicle is significantly less than 40 man-hours per vehicle. Because most of the process is automated and done by robots. It's been that way for many years.

So lets assume it takes 40 man-hours of human intervention. And then let's assume it costs the company $50.00 per hour for a worker. (What with all those benefits, overtime, and alleged abuse of the system).

40 times 50 equals 2,000 dollars. Now let's double it, let's assume that greedy, lazy union worker was making $100 an hour. It's still only 4 grand of labour cost with that extreme exaggeration.

For that - you pay what - 30, 40, 50 thousand for a vehicle. Oh yah, somebody's making big bucks here, but it's not the auto worker.

You might find this posting on "North American Auto Plant Efficiency" interesting.

Thanks again for participating in this blog.