evok

GM Dropped the Ball Again

22 posts in this topic

http://www.detnews.com/2005/autosinsider/0.../A01-356532.htm

Granted, this is good news but GM should have further negotiated with the UAW to put current workers on the same health care program as their white collar staff. Yes this deal is historic and probably very tough though not far enough. But that might have been out of scope of the negotiations. They did not go far enough. Edited by evok
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http://www.freep.com/pdf/2005/gm_uaw.pdf

Details of the deal. And what a piss poor deal it is. The biggest changes for current workes is there is an $18 co pay for Viagra. I am for realigning GM's health care obligations but it appears the UAW gave up nothing. The retirees got screwed in this one with current worker giving up nothing of real world significance to the company. Aweful. This is more smoke and mirrors negotiating.
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I can't believe GM is going to save as much as they say they will after looking at those details. Not exactly anything there that's going to cause employees major financial headaches. Edited by I hope GMRULES again
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Take it for what it is: a step in the right direction. The UAW didn't have to renegotiate anything. Getting them to the bargaining table is a milestone in itself. Yes, the changes look small; but when you have half a million retirees & another 120,000 (or so) active employees, these small changes add up to a significant amount rather quickly.

Not to mutate this topic too badly, but...
Has anybody stopped and thought about GM, why you like GM, and what GM must do to transition and survive today?

I like GM because it's a product I grew up with -- my dad owned GM vehicles and they were reliable for us. Out of that grew a sense of loyalty to an American company, who employs American workers. Today's landscape dictates that GM must shed a large percent of it's American work-force and move those jobs outside of the US, where wages are cheaper and healthcare is gov't-subsidied or non-existant. One of the core reasons why I love GM is being stripped from GM -- and it bothers me greatly. Does anybody else struggle with this?
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I like GM because it's a product I grew up with -- my dad owned GM vehicles and they were reliable for us.  Out of that grew a sense of loyalty to an American company, who employs American workers.  Today's landscape dictates that GM must shed a large percent of it's American work-force and move those jobs outside of the US, where wages are cheaper and healthcare is gov't-subsidied or non-existant.  One of the core reasons why I love GM is being stripped from GM -- and it bothers me greatly.  Does anybody else struggle with this?

[post="32093"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]

That's how I became a GM car guy too. It is sad they they will have no other choice but to shrink in the U.S. in order to survive. Let's just pray they do survive.
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Take it for what it is: a step in the right direction.  The UAW didn't have to renegotiate anything.  Getting them to the bargaining table is a milestone in itself.  Yes, the changes look small; but when you have half a million retirees & another 120,000 (or so) active employees, these small changes add up to a significant amount rather quickly.

[post="32093"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]



GM could have taken unilateral action without the UAW consent on their retired worker obligations. That was smoke and mirrors and UAW politics.

The UAW gave up a $1 dollar an hour raise and now have agreed to a co-pay on Viagra. No, this is not a deal that will really benefit the company down the road or the correction that is needed to align health care with the rest of the company.
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What they should do is spin off most of the North American (particular US) assembly plants into a semi-independent company instead of selling a big stake in GMAC; and go after contract assembly work for Toyota, Kia, Iveco etc. in the same vein as NUMMI. Set it up as a partnership with a venture-capital firm or someone like Magna and call it Fisher Body. Just keep a few core plants such as LGR and Delta Township. Cutting a special deal with the UAW to build big pickups for Kia would be better than a plant closing and be more productive than layoffs. They could also expand the commercial vehicle alliance with Renault/Nissan to develop compact and midsize vans for production in Europe, North America and Asia (with Isuzu), to replace the Kangoo, Combo, Astro, Urvan and Como.
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What they should do is spin off most of the North American (particular US) assembly plants into a semi-independent company instead of selling a big stake in GMAC; and go after contract assembly work for Toyota, Kia, Iveco etc. in the same vein as NUMMI. Set it up as a partnership with a venture-capital firm or someone like Magna and call it Fisher Body. Just keep a few core plants such as LGR and Delta Township. Cutting a special deal with the UAW to build big pickups for Kia would be better than a plant closing and be more productive than layoffs. They could also expand the commercial vehicle alliance with Renault/Nissan to develop compact and midsize vans for production in Europe, North America and Asia (with Isuzu), to replace the Kangoo, Combo, Astro, Urvan and Como.


What an intriguing idea! How realistic would it be to expect other manufacturers to contract-out assembly work? Could a GM/legacy-based assembly-co. be profitable (for the spin-off itself, or for other manufacturers to make use of it)? Would there be image concerns? (i.e. would manufacturers (like Toyota) prefer to hold assembly close-to-themselves over conerns of quality/perceptions of "GM is building Toyota's vehicles for Toyota", etc)? I guess GM wouldn't exactly have to limit an operation like that to auto manufacturers either. Technically, you could assemble anything from farm tractors to bulldozers.. Hmm.. it's intriguing to say the least; thanks for the brain-candy. Edited by cmattson
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Hopefully this deal will get GM by until contract negotiations in a couple of years... I agree though, GM always bows down to the UAW. Of course, in that same sense, GM would REALLY be in bad shape if the UAW were to strike.
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What an intriguing idea!    How realistic would it be to expect other manufacturers to contract-out assembly work?  Could a GM/legacy-based assembly-co. be profitable (for the spin-off itself, or for other manufacturers to make use of it)?  Would there be image concerns?  (i.e. would manufacturers (like Toyota) prefer to hold assembly close-to-themselves over conerns of quality/perceptions of "GM is building Toyota's vehicles for Toyota", etc)?  I guess GM wouldn't exactly have to limit an operation like that to auto manufacturers either.  Technically, you could assemble anything from farm tractors to bulldozers..  Hmm.. it's intriguing to say the least; thanks for the brain-candy.

[post="32122"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]

Spinning off Delphi didn't work to well do you think doing it with a different part of the company would work better?
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Agree with it or not--it happens; medical plans cover your whole health -- which includes everything from mental illness to inablity to (insert mental image here). Here's more ridiculousness: When my first-born was soon-to-arrive, I had my hospital "pre-approved".. that is, I filled out the paperwork in advance, and submitted it - and basically greased the wheels for all of the upcoming costs associated with child-birth. It's a fairly commonplace thing to pre-submit paperwork so that everything is ready. We were using a "in-network" hospital - so everything should be good-to-go, right? Wrong! My insurance company didn't pay a bill for 14 months; I kept getting notices for the remainder (we are req'd to pay 10% of a bill upto a cap amount) every month throughout that time period. I was getting notices that they were "submitting the bill for third-party pricing" and that the original paperwork wasn't coded correctly. The best? It was when my son recieved a form asking whether the above charges (his birth) were the result of a workplace injury. At that point, I gathered all paperwork and photocopied everything. I wrote a scathing letter and I mailed a copy to the state's attorney general, to the better business bureau, and to the ins. company itself. My next piece of correspondance from them? A statement showing the full balance paid. BTW, the BBB didn't do much but the atty general's office was tremendously helpful; writing a letter (cc'ing me), and making several phone calls on my behalf. After that I was quick to discover the ins. co.'s limit on "preventative medicine". Quite simply, they covered preventative medicine upto $150 per family member per year. My newborn, as every parent finds out, requires something like 5-6 shots during their first year -- at a cost of about $300 ea. Yup -> that's considered "preventative medicine". So what's more ridiculous? Viagra coverage or denying a newborn's shots? These aren't UAW issues or GM issues. It's ins. company/medical industry issues -- and it is a HUGE problem for every employer and every worker in the US. It needs to be dealt with soon.
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Agree with it or not--it happens; medical plans cover your whole health -- which includes everything from mental illness to inablity to (insert mental image here).

Here's more ridiculousness:

When my first-born was soon-to-arrive, I had my hospital "pre-approved".. that is, I filled out the paperwork in advance, and submitted it - and basically greased the wheels for all of the upcoming costs associated with child-birth.  It's a fairly commonplace thing to pre-submit paperwork so that everything is ready.  We were using a "in-network" hospital - so everything should be good-to-go, right?  Wrong!  My insurance company didn't pay a bill for 14 months; I kept getting notices for the remainder (we are req'd to pay 10% of a bill upto a cap amount) every month throughout that time period.  I was getting notices that they were "submitting the bill for third-party pricing" and that the original paperwork wasn't coded correctly.  The best?  It was when my son recieved a form asking whether the above charges (his birth) were the result of a workplace injury.  At that point, I gathered all paperwork and photocopied everything.  I wrote a scathing letter and I mailed a copy to the state's attorney general, to the better business bureau, and to the ins. company itself.  My next piece of correspondance from them?  A statement showing the full balance paid.  BTW, the BBB didn't do much but the atty general's office was tremendously helpful; writing a letter (cc'ing me), and making several phone calls on my behalf.

After that I was quick to discover the ins. co.'s limit on "preventative medicine".  Quite simply, they covered preventative medicine upto $150 per family member per year.  My newborn, as every parent finds out, requires something like 5-6 shots during their first year -- at a cost of about $300 ea.  Yup -> that's considered "preventative medicine".  So what's more ridiculous?  Viagra coverage or denying a newborn's shots?

These aren't UAW issues or GM issues.  It's ins. company/medical industry issues -- and it is a HUGE problem for every employer and every worker in the US.  It needs to be dealt with soon.

[post="32247"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]


well, if u didn't take the viagra you wouldn't have needed to worry about a newborn :blink:
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Yeah... it doesn't look like much, but GM is about to cut 25,000 manufacturing jobs between now and 2008. That will push most of those to the "retiree rates" since the job cuts will be primarily through attrition/retirement. Not great, but better than it was.
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Technically, erectile dysfunction is a mental illness. Dont ask why I've had that conversation with at least two medical professionals, I just have.....
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Not that I disagree with it at all....I just think it's pretty comical that a company pays for that kind of thing, imagine what generations before would have thought of something like that. and i'm glad they're doin it.....i won't think about it....but I'm glad they're doin it...good for them, God bless em.. Edited by turbo200
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What I can't beleive is companies will pay for curing someone's erectile disfunction...

[post="32218"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]


A recent Italien study showed that erectiole disfunction is a sign of general cardiac insufficiency. Perhaps that little blue pill is preventing the employees from keeling over on the production line and interfering with production efficieny.
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people, you need to think of the big picture these are good baby steps in the right direction. if i recall, UAW didn't have to negotiate, their contract was through 07, this reneg was good faith on their part and these neg's demonstrate a willingness from both sides to talk at least, and it also shows they both recognize there are big problems to tackle during the next full contract negs. this also gets GM time to right the product and design ship. Also, i saw an article that said Wagoner and others were looking at pay cuts. it may not be the big earth shift that's needed for long term health, but I can't see there being negatives about this. And if i had the chance to get some damn good sex, and it only cost me 18 bucks to guarantee a hard on with a really hot chick, then I'd say it was money very well spent. that still allows me enough to get a digital camera to take pics of the event as well.
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What an intriguing idea!    How realistic would it be to expect other manufacturers to contract-out assembly work?  Could a GM/legacy-based assembly-co. be profitable (for the spin-off itself, or for other manufacturers to make use of it)?  Would there be image concerns?  (i.e. would manufacturers (like Toyota) prefer to hold assembly close-to-themselves over conerns of quality/perceptions of "GM is building Toyota's vehicles for Toyota", etc)?  I guess GM wouldn't exactly have to limit an operation like that to auto manufacturers either.  Technically, you could assemble anything from farm tractors to bulldozers..  Hmm.. it's intriguing to say the least; thanks for the brain-candy.

[post="32122"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]


For GM it just has to be more profitable. It would have to be high-volume, so bulldozers and tractors are probably out. The UAW may grumble, but a new wages/benefits deal for assembly of Kia's pickups and midsize SUVs*, for example, is got to be better than another plant closing and layoffs - and income from production has got to be better than just paying people while they're laid off for GM, even at a low profit margin. Automakers already contract out production. Toyota and Nissan already have a host of companies that build their products under contract, with varying levels of equity.
Central Motor Co. (77%) (Home of the MR-S, Raum and supplemental Corolla production)
Hino (50.55%) (Hilux, 4Runner, light trucks and some commerical vans. Also developed the Tacoma)
Toyota Auto Body (57.02%) (Home of the LandCruiser and most of Toyota's vans and mpvs)
Toyota Industries (24.56%) (additional Vitz/Yaris production, ToyoAce light van/truck)
Nummi (50%) (Tacoma, Corolla)
Gifu Auto Body (47.71%) (Hiace special vehicles)
Kanto Auto Works (50.64%) (Home of Lexus, Celica and most luxury Toyotas)
Daihatsu (51.69%) (Probox and Succeed wagons, OEM production)
Nissan Shatai (42.6%) (Elgrand, Infiniti FX45/FX35, Pickup, Wingroad/AD Van, Safari, Lafesta, Avenir/Expert, Caravan, Civilian)

Then there are companies like Magna Steyr, Valmet, Heuliez and Karmann building Chryslers, Saabs, BMWs, Porsches, Mercedes, Opels etc. Many of GM's North American plants offer good productivity and excellent quality. Capacity must increase for "import" manufacturers, and more will come. The UAW and GM need to adapt to that, either by closing plants and losing even more money paying people to do nothing, or seeking to take advantage of the imports' need for local plants.

* I mention Kia because they have a desire for a local BOF truck plant to build the pickups and SUVs shown as concepts in recent years. An under-utilized GM plant would work out nicely for everyone.
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Jeesh... I can't believe that's all they gave up. I guess it'll just be more they'll have to give up in the future, as Snate said. But, GM should've been more aggressive with this...
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