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Old 12-15-2008, 07:15 AM   #225
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by lawdude:
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The major benefit would be to eliminate people being paid 95% wages when not working. I.E. featherbedding. That is what killed the rail roads.

snipped
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Here's some perspective --- when I got out of the Navy in the early 70's and returned to the Kansas City area, I immediately landed a job working for a railroad. Many of my friends told me I was crazy since the "good jobs" could be had at the TWA overhaul/maintenance base or at one of the Ford or GM auto plants. Railroads, I was told, were just not going to make it.

More than thirty years later, after a great career with a railroad, I retired with both a solid company and an excellent Railroad Retirement pensions. Funny thing happened during my railroad career - the weak railroad companies went bankrupt, the remaining companies work patiently and diligently to be rid of archaic union work rules, and at the same time improved their physical plant and became competitive. Now airlines and auto companies are on the skids! Railroads, such as BNSF, CSX, NS and UP are doing great!

The railroad improvements came WITHOUT government or taxpayer loans or bailouts or gifts. Railroad freight rates, in real dollars, are less than before. Really smart financial folks, such as Warren Buffett, buy up stock such as BNSF by the box car loads. Lots of folks now line up to apply for solid railroad jobs (particularly veterans, since railroad companies really go after these fine folks, a fact of which I'm proud).

Gee, when left to their own survival, companies in this country really do finally get it. I say out with the poor auto company executives, out with archaic featherbedding or something-for-nothing work rules, and on with the realities of making business work --- WITHOUT government and taxpayer handouts.

I think we, as taxpayers, should let the begging auto and UAW executives sit stuffed in a little cubicle (like the ones at the auto dealer) and then make them meet the sales manager, and the general manager, and then ask them for their final offer and make them sign the worksheet ----- THEN LAUGH AND TELL THEM NO WAY!

Taxpayer help should go to folks who really need it --- not folks who have enjoyed relatively high incomes for lots of years because of archaic and ridiculous work rules.

PS: I know Amtrak is subsidized by our tax dollars - that's a whole different story and represent a tiny part of the railroad industry. I agree with those who feel Amtrak should be left to die a natural death. By the way, back when Amtrak was formed to take over passenger rail service, we were told the "loans" to get it going would soon be repaid. Hmmm, nearly 40 years later taxpayers still prop them up! WRONG, just WRONG.
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Old 12-15-2008, 09:14 AM   #226
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Hey when you guys are done with this topic there's another good discussion on abortion in the general discusion forum.
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:01 AM   #227
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When people want to downplay the roll of unions they pull out the featherbedding argument, let me say something as a 42 year union member featherbedding is WRONG ok we agree. The out look of the folks in my union "The United Brotherhood of Carpenters" is a fair days work for a fair days pay. I've never in 42 years thought I should be paid for no work! The roll of unions are to level the field, believe me business's are not some benevolent entity that will treat their workers well without some sort of pressure. Just look at the children working in third world sweat shops. This is what we would have here without unions. If you disagree show me examples of progress with out some power to show a balance.
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:09 AM   #228
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Without getting into any other issues, please tell me why you think it is OK for struggling people (taxpayers) to pay for the healthcare and retirement of other folks retiring at 51 years of age. This has nothing to do with unions or anything else. Please explain how your approve of you money being taken and given to others. Maybe I will be able to understand my money being taken for others.
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Old 12-15-2008, 01:25 PM   #229
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Our money is taken every day for things we do not approve of as individuals. My tax dollars are being sent to wall street billionaires without my approval or consent. Now who would I rather see my money go to, working folks win every time. Let's remember wall street has received about 500 billion so far, the big 3 are asking for a loan of 15 billion, about 3% as much. Yet all the heat is on the "WORKERS" at the big 3. In perspective I think that money is better spent. I agree cut out the job bank, raise the retirement age for FUTURE retirees, The same with unlimited heath care, but those who played by the rules shouldn't be penalized. The reason for much of the disparity with the per car cost for the foreign car makers is they have no one out on pension. The US Auto Industry has been the backbone of our country let's remember that.
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:41 PM   #230
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So you approve of the government taking each of our monies to pay others healthcare. Did you say that? Your justification is that they have done it to Wall Street. The actual figure to day is $310 billion, but what is $200 billion between fellow campers. That money was intended to be lent out to consumers to free up the credit log jam that started due to the disastrous practice of giving subprime loans to people that couldnít afford to own the homes and had no indentations of repaying the loan. These funds were loans or actual equity purchases of shares the companies. I disagreed with the concept and still do. You must agree with it as it would be hard to be against the credit bailouts and be for the bailout of the auto companies. The car companies have a total value of (total stock price) of $11 billion. They have debt of $51 billion and unfunded employee obligations of between $60 and $100 billion. I donít know any responsible person who considers this bailout as a loan that could ever be paid back. As far as the unions go, I would be against the Unamerican practice of taking my money to pay for otherís healthcare no matter if they were union, nonunion, or management. The concept is wrong. I suspect that you are for doing this bailout only because they are union. Many other companies union and nonunion are also struggling, I guess we should be paying for their healthcare, too. I think what needs to be done is to go into bankruptcy and to have a judge get the total compensation down from the $73 on the UAW to the $44 of the transplants that have been proven to be successful. Crushing work rules would also be eliminated. If these things are not done, then the companies are going to continue to fail and they will keep coming back to take our money again and again. These critical changes must be done before we throw money at these failed companies. You point of transplants having no one out of pension is just incorrect. Makes no difference. They have fully funded pensions and workers retire at 65 and are picked up by Medicare that has been paid for by them and their employers for decades. They have a zero obligation instead of the $60 to $100 million of the big three. This deception is frequently quoted even though it has been discredited. People not bothering to seek the facts jump on it even though it is wrong. If we pay off all of the early retirees for the gold plated healthcare then the companies go under and everybody loses. A better option would be to reduce them to a healthcare plan like other America worker have.
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Old 12-15-2008, 03:32 PM   #231
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Lindsay, I guess my problem is I'm a bleeding heart liberal. I've been very fortunate in my life and have what I need (not what I want, but rather what I need)I've stared down the grim reaper on several occasions and walked away. Gave me a different perspective on life, we are all responsible for the other guy, just a matter of how seriously you take your obligations. Last year I spent a month doing Katrina rebuilding work, took a lot of heat on an other RV Forum about the low life trash that were just waiting for a hand out. Well some folks think they work so hard for what they have that they should give to those who haven't been as fortunate. Well I've done ok, worked hard, saved,but I was lucky to have the skills and smarts to succeed. Not everyone is so blessed. They may work harder than I ever have but just done have the right skill set to succeed. Is that fair? They work hard but it doesn't workout for them. Once I have what I need it doesn't bother me to share with the less fortunate. I sleep pretty well too.
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Old 12-15-2008, 04:58 PM   #232
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We can discuss the Big 3 all we want but the bottom line is they have a compensation package far and away more lucrative than almost any other working group (except our congress).

Like it or not, those are the facts.
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Old 12-15-2008, 05:01 PM   #233
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I appreciate the fact that you, who has said you have free healthcare want to give your money to others to keep their free healthcare, but the vast majority of Americans do not have free (or nearly free) healthcare and you seem to be perfectly willing for us to give away our money through taxes to maintain others free gold plated healthcare. I have stated before I pay $1946/month and it is hard. Please explain to me why I should be paying for anybody else to have free gold plated healthcare which is a lots better than mine? Maybe if it would make you feel better, you could pay part of mine. Just a simple explaination without all of the side stuff would be nice. Thanks Somehow, I donít put the autoworkers at $73/hour total compensation with a free healthcare and paid retirement about 250% the national average into the ďless fortunateĒ category. Hard to imagine you do.
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Old 12-15-2008, 05:40 PM   #234
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Lindsay, as I've said I have what I NEED, perhaps you don't feel as though you do, only you can answer that. But the retirees have planned their lives on the promises made by the Big 3 in decades of contracts. If you find the laws of the US pertaining to contracts inadequate you can certainly petition your representatives to change the laws. But they are the laws now. So unless you think it's fair to circumvent the laws by declaring bankruptcy to get out of a contract you agreed to, then there is not much that will change your mind. My thoughts are that if we are only discussing what is fair, how is it not unfair to to the UAW retirees? They have done nothing wrong but there lives will be turned upside down
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Old 12-15-2008, 05:55 PM   #235
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Lindsay, I want to apologize as I am being inconsiderate of your situation regarding health care. I do support nationalized health care so that people such as yourself can't be taken advantage of because they were fortunate enough to beat Cancer. I would gladly pay taxes to give everyone adequate medical care. I believe it's a right that shouldn't depend on wealth.
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Old 12-15-2008, 05:58 PM   #236
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by lawdude:
We can discuss the Big 3 all we want but the bottom line is they have a compensation package far and away more lucrative than almost any other working group (except our congress).

Like it or not, those are the facts. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Lawdude, I think you should reconsider putting congress in the WORKING group
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Old 12-15-2008, 06:47 PM   #237
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Bankrupcy laws do in fact void the contracts and a judge will be reviewing all contracts from the executive compensation to the need for free gold plated healthcare for early retirees. The excessives in each will be rewritten to attempt to try and save the companies. Excessive executive pays will be coming down and they will have an employment decision to make. Take it or leave. The same will be happening to the hourly rates and crushing work rules. The excessive healthcare benefits (which end up costing about 1/3 of the total compensation) will in all likelihood be reduced to what average workers in America receive. If they are to get federal taxpayer money, the benefits should not be gold plated. Taxes will not be paying for the difference between normal and $21/month that is paid for the very expensive policies now no matter what the preconditions happen to be. I would think the 30 and out would be scrapped and something more in line with normal practices of companies that can survive will be substituted. If they want 30 and out then they have to pay for it each year from todayís vehicles. These excessive benefits and the 30 an out have proven to be deadly for the company and must be stopped for the good of the company and itís remaining employees. I am not talking about doing nothing for the retirees, I (and probably the bankruptcy judge) will be bring their compensations down to what is normal for Americans and this will reduce the extra $2500 per car that they cause thereby helping the company and existing employees. Either this is done or they will get nothing. It is in their interest too to have the big three viable and they definitely will not be unless they agree or the judge institutes normal benefits.

If we nationalize healthcare, I see huge problems and I have no problems with paying for my own healthcare. The doctors and nurses (including my wife) will not be working for free. The cost will be there, but from what I see, other than the military, everything the government dos ends up costing more. I canít see healthcare being any different. Working people will be paying for the nonworking. It is just switching the dollars and putting in government inefficiencies into the mix. I see a net increase in cost. I just think it is un-American for me to be forced to pay for others who are getting it for free. I am still waiting for somebody to explain why it is fine for the government to take my money and pay for others to get free gold plated healthcare that I donít get.
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Old 12-15-2008, 07:17 PM   #238
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Lindsay, I surrender your apparent prime problem is your being forced to pay for this so called early retirement which is standard amongst the military, police and fire departments across the nation. Many industries and government entities have a form of 30 and out with some even providing health care. The government agencies are obviously paid for by taxes. Do you find them excessive? Do you think you're are being treated fairly by the medical insurance companies? My guess is your answer is no to both. And I would agree.
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