6.05.2006

Received this from one of my activist friends who doesn't have a blog. It was dated May 8 so the link to the story she provided no longer exists but here is the 'paper' it came from...

"Not fault of UAW, it's the buyers of foreign cars"
~CLIFF JOHNSON COMMUNITY PRESS GUEST COLUMNIST~


There is a true cost to our economy when Americans purchase foreign cars. From a decrease in wages, which directly leads to a decrease in local purchasing power. With the impending loss of jobs at Batavia Transmissions and the blame shifted to the union (United Auto Workers), here are some facts the media tend to leave out.

The legacy costs (pension and health care) to past and present UAW workers is about $5.8 billion per year. This may seem like a staggering figure until you compare it to the costs of the white collar (chief executive officers and management) legacy. At General Motors last year, it was $7 billion. Easier to blame the union.

CEOs' salaries in the United States since 1980 have grown at an alarming rate. If minimum wage had grown at the same rate it would be more than $22 an hour. Easier to blame the union.

In 2004, General Motors lost more than $1 billion in its manufacturing division but management's executive bonus still kicked in. Easier to blame the union.

J.D. Power states there is a double false perception that current foreign cars are better and American cars are inferior. The facts are American cars are equal to or better than their foreign equivalent. J.D. Power ranks General Motors as No. 1 in multi-car manufacturing in sales satisfaction, Toyota was No. 5. Also J.D. Power states General Motors has the most dependable vehicles in eight of 19 categories. Toyota was first in only four categories.

In 2005, Chevrolet outsold Toyota in the United States. The Buick Regal and Lacoss are rated of the highest quality by Consumer Reports and other car magazines. The Michigan Grand River Cadillac was the highest rated in North America. Our United States government reports Toyota's new American plants are 10 years behind in plant safety as compared to General Motors plants. Toyota devotes a good portion of its budget to promoting that it makes an American car.

Here are the facts: 75 percent of all cars made in the United States are Ford, General Motors, Chrysler and their domestic content averages 82 percent, Toyota 40 percent, Lexus only 3 percent.

Because of our choices, I wonder where our children will work. They all can't get white collar jobs, can they? Well it looks like the new Wal-Mart is hiring. For the record I am not a UAW member.

WEIGH IN... WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON AMERICANS PURCHASING FOREIGN CARS!?!


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5 comments:

sabatkes said...

I like Ford cards. I'm not a huge fan of Henry Ford, but the cars- I know what to expect. Sad thing is, Toyota and Honda plan to open more plants in the US- will they consider to be american made by then...

rgmb said...

I've owned both and currently own one of each, Subaru and Chrysler Pacifica.
I've also had good and bad of both. I think 30 years ago the distinction was more obvious. The asian cars then were smaller and had front wheel drive and better mileage. At least that's my perception. Now American manufactureres have caught on and are making awesom vehicles. I love my Pacifica, it's my second one in three years. Only problem is it's a gas guzzler!!

puppytoes said...

d'oh! i already wrote one lengthy comment... which blogger ate up like last night's left over pizza!

here's what i said (sort of): i happen to be a fan of america's automobile industry... my step-dad started selling GMC products right after WWII, and continues to do so to this day (he's 86). american-built cars put food on my family's table.

that said, it's hard to ignore the foreign manufacturers... remember how *brilliant* honda seemed back in the 70's when they rolled out the civic during the oil crisis. cars made overseas have a lot to offer, and in many ways, really are much better (in certain ways) than american. still... gotta love the american cars (i'm a fan of Jeeps, myself)!

honestly, i don't have a problem with some of the foreign companies setting up factories here... especially if it means more jobs for americans. you're quite correct to say all our kids won't wind up in white collar jobs, Karen... of course, considering the fact that today's mechanics practically need a degree in computer science in order to work on today's car engines, maybe it's time to redefine "blue collar" jobs, as well?

greatgreat topic for discussion! : D

CROAK said...

Now you know what it is like for the rest of the world when America comes in and sets up shop and closes down our local industry. No excuse of course but just you can now be aware you are much much bigger than anyone else and we are always being 'taken over' by the Americans.
Just a thought.

Karen said...

sabatkes~ you pose a good question.

rgmb~ glad you're driving American. Since hubby's retired from GM after 36 years, I fear what could be taken away from us.

puppytoes~ "blue collar" does seem to be going, going, almost gone!

croak~ never thought of it that way. it sure is different when the *shoe is on the other foot*.