Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado
Thanked 150 Times in 118 Posts
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Unions have certainly morphed into a horrible caricature of their original intent, no argument here.
BUT my company, a well known semiconductor manufacturer that never had any union involvement was basically cut to 1/3 it's size merely by a small cadre of stock option driven managers. And, in particular, the CEO and chairman of the "board" had the bulk of the responsibility. He basically priced us out of every market we were in, pissed off our customers and spent huge amounts of money on projects that were too far out of our core competency.
Too much power and the wrong incentives cause problems, no matter what title that person holds. Ignorant and lazy shareholders are a key part of the issue too. How many folks own mutual funds and don't give a rip how their shares get voted? Unfortunately the largest shareholders are now pensions, trusts and mutual funds and, even worse, most market activity is now dominated by algorithms written by 27 year old math geeks who pay millions to get a microsecond time advantage on their electronic data feed (insider trading basically).
I've worked at GM, the unions were a huge problem, no doubt, but the top tier of managers was just a responsible for their problems. My GMC S-15 had several design issues that were directly attributable to management making the wrong design priorities.
The unions were obstructionist foot draggers, but management set the stage for the crap that came out of the factory.
Keep in mind too, that in Michigan union membership is not optional, there are plenty of honest union members. It turns out that the management model of unions has gone the same way as corporate management - a small group of backscratching cronies do the bulk of the damage.
Frankly, guys, this is a democracy (the Republic died when FDR threatened to stack the supreme court and no one challenged him) we set the rules and we have failed to enforce any semblance of humanity in our institutions. The markets, the corporations and the unions all share the same rot - our lack of moral standards. We're way too willing to overlook corruption if we can get a low interest rate mortgage or a taxpayer financed football stadium for our favorite team. Cheap gas drives many of us to overlook bad foreign policy decisions.
Keep your eyes open, every day there is something you can do to make things better.
2008 SE 4WD, Crew Cab, Long Bed; Leer 180 Cap, 2" Receiver hitch, Trailer wiring in bumper. Cooper 245/75/16 M&S (Winter). Cooper 265/75R16 ATP (Summer). Full set of Hefty skids, TJM Coilover w/HD spring, SPC upper control arms and 2" rear add a leaf plus 1" block. TJM extended travel rear shocks. Pyle backup camera wired to a Pioneer radio.