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Shrinking in the middle continues...

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posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 04:19 PM

Workers at auto parts maker Delphi Corp. will be asked this week to take a two-thirds pay cut. It's one of the most drastic wage concessions ever sought from unionized employees.

Workers at General Motors Corp., meanwhile, tentatively agreed on Monday to absorb billions of dollars in healthcare costs. Ford Motor Co. and DaimlerChrysler employees are certain to face similar demands.

U.S. Labor Is in Retreat as Global Forces Squeeze Pay and Benefits

We are supposed to believe everything is fine...the economy is "growing"--"recovered". Truly, the US economy enjoyed 3.8% growth last quarter in big letters, but in fine print we see it was "fueled by consumer and government spending". Who is reaping those benefits? Only the owners. Globalization is forcing an industrial economy to become a service based economy (a wal-mart economy) and the wages aren't catching up as some have falsely predicted. They are actually on the decline along with healthcare benefit packages and pretax or 401k retirement contributions.

In the US, it's become either give up your wages or give up your job to low rent workers overseas or right under your nose in central and south america. It's time to stop screaming the roof is on fire--because the whole block burned down . There is ash and soot as far as the eye can see for industry in the United States.

The economist are actually trying to tell the american people that the economy has recovered. Maybe its growing because the government is spending massive amounts, but I highly doubt this is true growth with all the paper they are pumping into the system to hedge their bets and dilute the effects of the deficit. One thing few will say, but all know is true, manufacturing will never recover from this--it’s a permanent change, and for workers, skilled and unskilled, it can only get worse.

Smoke an mirrors…
"Manufacturing grew from this month to that"
"Manufacturing is still suffering, but"
...there are no buts for people working in manufacturing. There's unemployment, under-employment, and wal-mart.

A survey done by Pricewaterhouse of the major industrial manufactures this quarter shows that the bleeding of jobs is just beginning

37 percent of those surveyed have manufacturing operations in China, and another 5 percent plan to begin manufacturing there within the next 12 to 18 months. Of this 42 percent, 85 percent say that manufacturing in China will be important to the profitable growth of their company over the next three to five years

PricewaterhouseCoo pers’ Manufacturing Barometer

[edit on 1-11-2005 by Saphronia]

posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 05:08 PM
"two-thirds pay cut"

how much do these guys make?? if they are making $21.00/hr. now, wouldn't this bring their wage down to under $6.00/hr? and bush expects there to be less need for food stamps? how could any "compassionate conservative" out there actually hold these people obligated for their debts after this? they probably be making so little that they will be eligable for every public program out there! are the upper managers and such having their salaries cut by two-thirds also? no, why not? what about their pension plans, healthcare coverage....any of that being taken away?

if not, I just have one question for them.....

why should taxes be taken out of my teeny-tiney check, and help to feed, clothe, heal, keep warm, and cloth their employees and their families?
If the managers and ceos and those who came before them couldn't run that business so that it could remain turning a profit, well, who's the failure? the employees, or the management? if they cut their wages down below what is the proverty line, every taxpayer in america should have the right to know, just how much EVERY MANAGER, CEO, AND EMPLOYEE is earning in this company...and just what "adjustment" will be made there also.....or, after a year or so of have the lowly employees kept alive by the taxpayers of the nation, will their salaries, pensions, and other benefits still remain intact, and the company turning a nice profit to boot! rewarding their stockholders nicely, and well, deciding to give themselves a nice pat on the back!! and a few more hundred thousand for a job so well done!

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 08:49 AM

(because it isn't an election year and no one is trying to win the middle class vote soccer moms and nascar dads included )

This November, Congress will vote on a proposal to cut federal financial aid by anywhere from $9 billon to $17 billion, which would be the largest cut in the history of federal student aid programs.

If the Republican-supported bill [H.R. 609] passes, typical student borrowers might have to pay $5,800 more than the existing average education debt of $17,500.

The cuts would mostly impact low-income students nationwide who already fall short by $3,800 each year when paying for college with financial aid, according to a memorandum by Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), the senior Democratic member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee who is leading the fight against H.R. 609.

Financial Aid Faces Major Cut

As Congress looks to cut up to $50 billion in spending, education and student groups are complaining that college financial aid will take the biggest hit.
House Republican leaders have ordered the committee that oversees federal student aid to find more cuts than any other committee: about $18 billion. Yesterday, the House Education and Workforce Committee approved a Republican proposal designed to cut spending on student aid by $14.5 billion in the next five years.

College students worry about cuts in financial aid


The College Board's annual survey on trends in college pricing indicates that while rates of tuition increase have lessened since skyrocketing in the past two years, they continue to surpass inflation.

At the 3,000 four-year public universities surveyed, average tuition in 2005-2006 rose to $5,491, an increase of $365, or 7.1 percent. Private universities rose to $21,235, up $1,190 (5.9 percent).

While these rates are certainly less than the ten and 13 percent increases seen in recent years, they remain a burden to students who are strapped for funding their educations. When room and board, books, supplies, fees and other expenses are taken into account, students at public institutions in their own states are now averaging costs of $15,556, while their counterparts at private institutions are facing sums averaging $31,016.

Tuition outpaces inflation

Continued attacks on the middle class by the republican party!

while they refuse to address the cuts being made in manufacturing in this country or the tax havens set up by so called multinational corporations -- they seek to put higher education out of the reach of low to middle income families. no jobs, no education, and higher tax burdens…okay bring on the shanty towns and food lines!

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:03 PM
"while they refuse to address the cuts being made in manufacturing in this country "


oh, they've been addressing it!! haven't they been saying to the effect that those workers should be retrained for the better jobs of tomorrow? Cutting the financial aide kind of impedes that endeavor, doesn't it? still think they want us all in debt up to our necks, taking their danged government handouts and working for $7 an hour!!! that way, they have the power to decide just how much and what we more obesity problem!! what kind of home we live in, and where it is located at!! what we wear, how much we drive, ect. ect.......

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:54 PM
no, no, no---we must not get upset and get our pressure up...we might have a stroke and since we can't afford healthcare we'll be rushed to a county hospital that doesn't have enough beds for us to rehabilitate properly so we'll end up with a feeding tube in our belly living off of liquid foodstuff matrix style because it's the moral thing to do...

oh, they've been addressing it!! haven't they been saying to the effect that those workers should be retrained for the better jobs of tomorrow? Cutting the financial aide kind of impedes that endeavor

yes, they have suggested retraining middle class workers that lose their jobs but in real life programs and funding there is little to nothing after unemployment insurance runs out you are basically on your own. if one wants to go back to school then all that's left is their savings/cashing out their retirement/and financial aid. (which is destined to be cut) Seems like someone hates Americans and I aint talking about the terrorist.

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 04:27 PM
I ran into someone that was hoping to have gone into school this past year. unfortunately, by the time she got through the registration line, all the financial aide was gone....she qualified, had all the paperwork ready, but I guess the colleges are limited as to how much aide they have to use??? well anyways, she was told that you had to get to registration in the first hours, or the aide will be gone...she's hoping to have better luck next time around..

ummm...doesn't look like it does it?

but....oh ya, we should all go out and get retrained, bachelors degrees even, if we want to make enough to support our families!! "Compassionate Conservatives" that the guild name of a new clown union or something?

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 04:27 PM
oooops!!! now how did that happen

oh, well, sorry for the double post.

[edit on 3-11-2005 by dawnstar]

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 04:40 PM
The state of affairs of this country are bordering on outrageous.

No only the government wants you to get lower pay . . . but is also making sure that you can not get better financially through a college education.

Only the well off will be able to get an education in this country, the poor will only have hopes, dreams and Wal-Mart nothing more.

This is the best way to ensure that Wal-mart get his employees and that the poor remains poor.

Where has the American dream has gone?

I guess is in India and China.

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 08:01 PM
And the problem isn't simply with outsourcing; the outsourcing of manufacturing to some Mexican and Central American regions has been accompanied by some pretty massive "insourcing" of people competing for many of the service sector jobs which, by their nature, cannot be outsourced.

It is often said that these immigrants only take jobs that Americans aren't willing to do. I don't know how it is in other sectors, but in the building trades that is untrue.

I learned my trade from Americans. In those days (jeez, I've become a geezer...) a well-trained tradesman could expect to earn an acceptable living for his family, and have some respect for his job, too.

In today's building trades, the majority of the laborforce, in California, anyway, which is where I am, consists of Hispanics. About 75% of the ones I know personally, are here illegally. The ones I know, even though illegal, are paid "on the books" and do pay taxes. They contribute like any other taxpayer.

That isn't the problem.

The problems occur in the non-union working environment, where much of the work is these days. The stuff business can't outsource.

The problem is that employers often use illegal status as a "sword of Damocles" to pay them less, and provide less in benefits (if any) than they would demand if they were here legally. This has a tendancy to depress wages overall, except for those with many years of experience.

This actually does make the trades an unattractive alternative for those who might previously have seen them as a viable route to the middle class.

I know that I am the descendant of immigrants; I know "illegals" often face great hardship and danger just to get here, and the guys I know tell me some pretty depressing stories about where they came from.

I also know that in America's past, particularly during times of economic stress, there have been some pretty violent reactions to whole classes of immigrants, depending on the time-period, and most of what I have read about those times isn't very attractive.

I think we have to have a dual (at least) approach.

I think we need to enforce a generous, compassionate, and controlled immigration policy. By controlled I mean controlled in respect to the economy's ability to produce sustainably low unemployment levels, with decent wages.

And I think it is time for a return to some type of a renewed push for unionism to protect worker's rights in this country. In this enveloping environment, I don't see how the average person is going to attain concessions from business without the clout of collective organizations.

I still believe in Capitalism, but I think it has to exist in concert with some opposing structure to protect the interests of workers.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the matter...I'll probably wake up at 2:00 A.M. and think differently about... .

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