For sale or rescue: 25,000 deckchairs

It’s not really going to effect Saab at all as far as I can tell, but GM is set to throw 25,000 deckchairs from the Titanic.

I can’t say I’m overly surprised and I also think that as much as a few disgruntled employees should be mad at GM, they should also be mad at the UAW. GM carry a huge price disadvantage on every vehicle they sell and it has nothing to do with any materials or components in the car. It has to do with the health benefits they fund for around 1.1 million current and former employees.

You’d think the UAW folks would agree to a compromise in order to preserve the jobs that their kids could get in the future. What a legacy.

Hey, I’m not feeling sorry for GM here. There’s management and product issues here as well. Those I can understand. Rick Wagoner is quoted in the above-linked article as saying “If the U.S. market booms, if gas prices go down, if large SUVs come back, then our return to profitability will be quicker,”. If you ever needed confirmation that people can live in their own Disneyworld, you might have just got it.

Note to Rick: China is getting bigger and it needs oil. The price of it ain’t going anywhere but up. Which means SUV’s ain’t going anywhere but down. And whilst this site is meant to be politics free, anyone that pins their hopes on the economic management of a GWB administration deserves their fate.

That done with, what I don’t get is the stubborn insistence that GM owes a worker for healthcare (is there an expense more assured of escalation in the future) for the rest of their lives after already paying them a living wage and providing discounts and other benefits for a prolonged period.

I hope the UAW people have big shoulders, there’ll be a lot of crying between now and 2008.

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  1. I agree. I live in Ohio where GM has a heavy presence. Most workers here,and elsewhere in the US, get ZERO healthcare benefits after they retire, except Medicare. I wish everyone had what GM retirees have, but they don’t. And I don’t think a longstanding institution like GM should go under for the benefit of a selfish few who won’t give even a little so their kids have a place to work when they grow up.

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