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Class Warfare

The Shrubbery decided to make the GM/Chrysler loans, but the terms attack the United Auto Workers, because if they can’t have real slavery, they’ll settle for wage slavery.

A couple of days ago, Badtux took a hard look at GM labor costs, and discovered the Republicans are basically lying, just as they have lied about almost everything else. The average Toyota line worker takes home about $2/hour more than the average GM worker.

The big differences are that GM has been in business long enough in this country to have retirees, while the foreign car makers haven’t, and, unlike every other industrialized nation, the US doesn’t have a national health system, so employers are stuck with the costs.

David S Morgan, CBS News, covers a lot of the same ground in his piece, The True Price Of Auto Labor Costs. He did find one area where labor costs are excessive at US companies: the foreign companies pay their entire management teams about what the Big Three pay their CEOs.

Mr. Morgan also notes, that unlike the loans the US companies requested, because after $350 billion the banks still aren’t making loans, the foreign companies are recipients of hundreds of millions of dollars in tax incentives to build plants in the Southern states.  These aren’t loans, they are grants.


1 Steve Bates { 12.20.08 at 8:35 pm }

“These aren’t loans, they are grants.”

Ulysses, on a bill?

I’ve been reading about the constitutional implications and societal consequences of the struggle over slavery in the first half of the 19th century in America. Today’s jerks corporatists seem to have understood the first part… the idea that technology combined with slavery (real or wage) can be very profitable… without having comprehended the likely consequences after a few decades. Frankly, I don’t want to live to see a Second Civil War (or a Second American Revolution).

2 Bryan { 12.20.08 at 9:31 pm }

It is looking more like the French Revolution this time as all of the taxes have been pushed down to the middle and lower classes, as the French king did. They have even started “tax farming”, having private firms collecting overdue taxes for a cut. [another abject failure for privatization, BTW, the IRS was much more effective].