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Losers Striking by Uaana
Started on: 04-18-2006 10:02 AM
Replies: 115
Last post by: MinnGreenGT on 05-11-2006 11:07 PM
Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-24-2006 06:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
It just absolutely baffles me how in a coutry founded on free enterprise, that companies can have their feet hedl to the fire for wanting to turn a profit. I swear, the critisizm of companies that PROVIDE JOBS is so confounding. Do some of you guys even THINK about what you're saying? Why should a company have to JUSTIFY wanting to make a profit? I just don't get it. <shaking my head>
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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-24-2006 08:00 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
Taji... just out of curiousity - what do you do for a living? Or how do you earn your money?
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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-24-2006 08:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by MinnGreenGT:

Taji... just out of curiousity - what do you do for a living? Or how do you earn your money?


This I got to hear.

------------------
technology is great when it works
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't.
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.

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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-24-2006 08:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
Well Taijiguy how do you make your living?

------------------
technology is great when it works
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't.
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.

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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 08:22 AM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
I currently own and operate a computer company. Why is that of any relevence?
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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-25-2006 08:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
It just shows where you are coming from.

What kind of company?

Do you have employees or just you?

You see if we say something against the owners of a company it just seems like you are a little to defensive that's all.

Let me ask you this if you own a company.

Why is it so hard to understand that the owners are not the ones who really make the money?

The men and women who make or repair the product are the ones who make the money are they not?

Unless of course you are a one man business of course.

------------------
technology is great when it works
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't.
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.

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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-25-2006 09:36 AM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
Taiji - I'm not trying to "put you in your place" or anything... I'm rather just trying to figure out where you're coming from.

I have never worked for a union company. The closest I came was being an "honorary member" of a local printer's union (it was a "union" project, and for political reasons they didn't want a non-union shop working on it... but we were already contracted to do it! ).

I have owned my own company before (it was a PITA thanks to 2 of the 4 of us who owned the place). So I know what that takes, and what it means to be committed with that kind of responsibility.

I have seen both the positive and negative sides of unions (both of my parents are Northwest Airlines employees - although my Dad has been retired for about 10 years).


Like most issues, the union deal isn't a black and white issue... there are a lot of grey areas, and there are statements that people have made here that absolutely do not apply 100% to union workers even though it may apply to some (or even the majority). You have to see it from all the angles... not just the one that fits your argument.
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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 09:45 AM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by 84fiero123:


It just shows where you are coming from.

What kind of company?
Computers. I build them, sell them, fix them, and upgrade them.

Do you have employees or just you?
It's just me. I will NOT deal with employees. The exact nature of this conversation is the reason why even though I *could* hire two or three guys, (read: create jobs) I will NOT.

You see if we say something against the owners of a company it just seems like you are a little to defensive that's all.
It goes beyone defensiveness. It's being an objective observer, It's having been on both sides of the line and seeing things for what they are. Of course, very few people will give any degree of creedence to that position, because they disagree with my bias. Except my bias is the result of direct knowledge and education. Not the result of some "tradition" or influence brought to me by someone else.

Let me ask you this if you own a company.

Why is it so hard to understand that the owners are not the ones who really make the money?
Because that's complete and total BS. I'm about to relocate my company. I'm changing the name to be moer appealing to the local economy. I'm renting a space, paying a deposit. I'm paying for the buildout of the space, advertising, phones, internet, inventory, equipment and supplies. I'm paying a business advisor to come in and set up my books. I'm paying someone to DO my books. I'm printing up flyers and composing ads. I'm pounding the pavement and scrounging up business. I'm shaking hands, introducing myself and making friends. I'm networking. Then I'm going back to my shop and and actually perform the tasks that I'm trying to sell. I'm going to work from dawn to dusk 6 or 7 days a week to get myself established. I'll do this for a couple of years, sacrificing everything else in order to earn a reputation as a reliable and qualified technician. I'll be risking everything I own, because if the business sinks, it's my ass, my money, my time, my investment. Now tell me exactly WHY you think I shouldn't be allowed to make as much as I can if I should decide to hire employees? Where were THEY when I was doing all the initial legwork? What exactly is THEIR risk if the business fails aside from losing their job? They just go out and find another job. I'm left with the fallout, not them. They can open the papers again and hit the wat-ads. I'm stuck with the liabilities and debts. I'm stuck with the wasted hours and effort. Tell me, why exactly SHOULDN'T I be allowed to build a business for my benefit? The employee is NOT making the money for the business. He's perpetuating the work I had already done. He's riding on wave that *I* created. Without me, that person wouldn't HAVE his job.

The men and women who make or repair the product are the ones who make the money are they not?
The very fact that you think the laborors are who actually bring in the money shows honestly that you don't truly understand business at all. And I'm not saying that as an attack. No one can understand unless they've done it. It takes a hell of a lot of confidence to accept the responsibility 100% for yourself, and for earning an income. Laborors don't take that responsibiltiy, they don't care where the work comes from, they take no responsibility for that. That falls on the business owner. Without sales, there's no work, without work, there's no jobs, without jobs, there's no employees. So who is ultimately the person who makes the money? At the risk of sounding callous, laborors are a dime a dozen. They can be replaced. Business owners can't. I refer you back to the previous paragraph. I might seem unsypathetic, but I've been on both sides of this fence. I have worked for other people. And for a long time I felt exactly the way you (and obviously many others) feel. It was only when I stepped into the shoes of a business owner that I truly was able to understand. Let me ask you this: Why do think more disgruntled employees don't start their own businesses? If you honestly answer that question, you'll begin to understand what I'm talking about.
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aceman
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Report this Post04-25-2006 09:57 AM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
So, 84Fiero123, I pump in say $200,000 of MY money to start a business.....A computer business, let's say.

I run that business for the first year by myself and make $30,000 the first year after paying the bills.

The next year business picks up and I need to hire an employee. I make $60,000 that year and I paid my employee (Employee A) $20,000.

The following year the business really gets rolling and I need another employee. The business makes $100,000. Employee A makes now $22,000 and Employee B makes $20,000. I, as the owner pocket $50,000.

Now, I'm really on a roll. My business is making $150,000 a year. I hire a store clerk (Employee C). He just rings up the sales and recommends products. Employee A &B are building and fixing the computers. Employee C really doesn't have that much technical skills and needs none really for the job. He gets paid $15,000. Employee A is making $25,000 and Employee B is making $22,000. I pocket about $85,000.

The next year business picks up a bit more. It's making $185,000. I now have two store clerks making $16,000 each and my techs make $25,000 each. The business is running well without me being there to fix or build the computers and I only really need to be there 5 hours out of the day instead of 12 hours a day.. I now have an accountant do my books at $5,000 year. I'm making over $90,000 now and working less.


So as the business owner, I can expect you, as an employee with your ideas, that you'll come in and say, "Mark, I know what this store and it's employee makes. You're pocketing 3 times what I make and I do more work than you. You need to pay each of us $45,000. That's equal shares. Because, WE are the ones that make the money. Not you."

Noooooooooo, it wasn't my initial $200,000 invested into the business. Nooooooo, this isn't a capitalistic society. It's communist Cuba, right? We all share in the profits because in kindergarten we were taught sharing was the right thing to do. Be thankful that I opened that business, hired you, and kept you employeed for 4 straight years.


It's been mentioned before, 84fiero123, take a few 200-300 level Economic classess at a University and maybe you'll change your views or understand the management side of business.


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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 10:03 AM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
Beautiful aceman. Beautiful.

You did leave out the liabilities, and the fact that most business owners have to borrow that 200grand, and have to personally guarentee that loan with their own collateral, and then have to pay it back, with interest, which comes out of company profits...unless the company folds....but, to them, that's not important. Just so long as they get a bigger paycheck, and a "fair share"....

[This message has been edited by Taijiguy (edited 04-25-2006).]

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Report this Post04-25-2006 10:12 AM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
I dunno, Taji, I'm just a simple small farm town boy that was part owner in an H&R Block at age 16. (Family Business), worked my way through college as a hotel clerk and then a hotel manager and then went active duty in the Army for the past 17 years.

I don't know nuthin about both sides of the fence, here.
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Report this Post04-25-2006 10:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by aceman:

So as the business owner, I can expect you, as an employee with your ideas, that you'll come in and say, "Mark, I know what this store and it's employee makes. You're pocketing 3 times what I make and I do more work than you. You need to pay each of us $45,000. That's equal shares. Because, WE are the ones that make the money. Not you."



Who ever said anything about "equal shares"? You're just making stuff up now (even if to illustrate a point, it's far from any truth)...

The owner of Sears (as the owners of many of the other dealerships in question) has MILLIONS... nobody said anything about trying to be "equal" with him! Just trying to make a living based on what your expectations are.

OK... so "your" business as described is paying employee A $25k/yr. You decide you want more money in your pocket, and without any reason give him a 25% paycut (in the form of paying him 66% of his normal wages for certain "easier" projects that "anyone" shoudl be able to do). He has no recourse to say "no... that's not right" does he?
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Report this Post04-25-2006 10:48 AM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
That mechanic has recourse. He can tell the employer he's not working any of the "easy" jobs @ $17/hr. He only get 30 hours of work that week. Or he can quit and go work the "easy" jobs at Tires Plus for $12/hr or the technical jobs at a smaller shop at say $22/hr with no real benefits.

BTW, I stated above in one of my posts that I worked for a hotel with this situation. If I wanted fulltime hours at the hotel, I could have them, but not as management. 24 hours a week @ $6.50 and 16 hours a week @ $5. My recourse was to say that's not fair and find another job.

[This message has been edited by aceman (edited 04-25-2006).]

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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 12:38 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by aceman:

That mechanic has recourse. He can tell the employer he's not working any of the "easy" jobs @ $17/hr. He only get 30 hours of work that week. Or he can quit and go work the "easy" jobs at Tires Plus for $12/hr or the technical jobs at a smaller shop at say $22/hr with no real benefits.

BTW, I stated above in one of my posts that I worked for a hotel with this situation. If I wanted fulltime hours at the hotel, I could have them, but not as management. 24 hours a week @ $6.50 and 16 hours a week @ $5. My recourse was to say that's not fair and find another job.



That goes precisely to my earlier comment about how laborors don't want to be responsible for themselves. They don't want to say "That's cool, I understand you want to cut my pay. I'm just afraid I can't accept that as sufficient pay, so I'll have to tender my resignation and seek other employment with a more suitable pay rate." No. Instead, they complain that the person who's giving them the job is bieng unfair- (give me a second to process that...) Where if they were TRULY responsible for themselves, they would say, "You know, I'm just not making enough dough. I think I'll start my OWN company and make better money. Maybe." It's the "maybe" that stops them, and they don't appreciate that the business owner is the person who said that, and did it anyway. They want the security but none of the risks. It's an example of the attitude of "entitlement" that is crushing this country.

[This message has been edited by Taijiguy (edited 04-25-2006).]

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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-25-2006 12:54 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:


That goes precisely to my earlier comment about how laborors don't want to be responsible for themselves. They don't want to say "That's cool, I understand you want to cut my pay. I'm just afraid I can't accept that as sufficient pay, so I'll have to tender my resignation and seek other employment with a more suitable pay rate." No. Instead, they complain that the person who's giving them the job is bieng unfair- (give me a second to process that...) Where if they were TRULY responsible for themselves, they would say, "You know, I'm just not making enough dough. I think I'll start my OWN company and make better money. Maybe." It's the "maybe" that stops them, and they don't appreciate that the business owner is the person who said that, and did it anyway. They want the security but none of the risks. It's an example of the attitude of "entitlement" that is crushing this country.



See... in theory what you're saying makes sense. And sure, it makes sense for the PC repair guy. But for the specially skilled auto mechanic? It doesn't work that way... "I don't like the way you're running your multi-million dollar business. So I'm going to take my $40k/year salary that I've managed to save $5k of (due to necessary living expenses) and start an entirely new Multi-Million dollar Mercedes Benz dealership in one of the largest auto-sales markets in the nation, where other people (multi-millionaires) have already been doing business for the past 20-50 years. That'll be nothing! BTW can I borrow $5? I need a gallon and a half of gas to get home..."

Get real.

Oh yeah, and everyone can just up & leave their job so they can default on every loan they have in the name of "small business". That's why the auto mechanics went to special schools for special educations to work on special cars? To Run more and more small businesses?

[This message has been edited by MinnGreenGT (edited 04-25-2006).]

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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 12:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
And you don't think what I said still applies? Why CAN'T he start a "multimillion dollar business"? See, right there you are completely lacking appreciation for the guy who DID establish the multimillion dollar business. Do you think that business just sprouted there by itself? How do you think it DID get there? SOMEONE had to take the significant risk of starting that business. DOn't blame the owner because the employee doesn't have the ass to take that risk! Like you said: Get real.

Edit:
You say everyone can (I'm guessing you meant "can't") just up & leave their job so they can default on every loan they have in the name of "small business". That's why the auto mechanics went to special schools for special educations to work on special cars? To Run more and more small businesses?
Don't you see that the people who run and own these businesses did exactly what you're talkign about? They took those enormous risks, and walked out to the edge of the abyss, all in the name of success. Yet you would complain that once they are able to enjoy that success, they are being unfair to those who are, as I put it, "riding the wave" that the business owner CREATED?? You don't see how your own arguments are completely enforcing my own? With each comment, you emphasize WHY business owners are ballsier than the people who work for them. They are RISK-TAKERS, employees are not. No balls, no blue chips.

[This message has been edited by Taijiguy (edited 04-25-2006).]

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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:

And you don't think what I said still applies? Why CAN'T he start a "multimillion dollar business"? See, right there you are completely lacking appreciation for the guy who DID establish the multimillion dollar business. Do you think that business just sprouted there by itself? How do you think it DID get there? SOMEONE had to take the significant risk of starting that business. DOn't blame the owner because the employee doesn't have the ass to take that risk! Like you said: Get real.



You're being close-minded here. I HAVE run my own business... I DID take the risks assocaited with that venture... and I DID loose on the deal. I have plenty of appreciation for those who have started successful businesses... but you are lacking respect for those who's specialized skills work with those business to create the products and services required to be successful.

Not everyone has the ability or resources to run their own business (even today you have to have the assets in place to "put on the line" for a decent line of credit). And because not everyone has the resources to do so... doesn't mean that their specialized skills make them any less of a worker. Or that they should be taken advantage of everytime the opportunity arises. Or that they should be "taken" for their income when it's easy to do - espeically if they were hired with the expectation of getting paid a specific wage for their specialized skills. And the whole "I'll just go get a different job" thing is crap - the job market hasn't supported that kind of leverage... ever!

And do you think that when a dealership was started 50 years ago... that the risk was the same as it is now? Not a chance. It is a 100% completely different business now than it was then.
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:22 PM Click Here to See the Profile for ToddsterClick Here to Email ToddsterSend a Private Message to ToddsterDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by FIEROPHREK:


I'm sorry toddster but we're gonna have to let you go . You see you forgot to change the filter ! and refill with oil ! DOH !



Ohhhhhhh, that explains why they deserve $46k / year plus benefits.
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:22 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierobearClick Here to Email fierobearSend a Private Message to fierobearDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
You don't see how your own arguments are completely enforcing my own? With each comment, you emphasize WHY business owners are ballsier than the people who work for them. They are RISK-TAKERS, employees are not. No balls, no blue chips.



Taiji, you are trying to communicate over the vast gulf separating labor and ownership. They are arguing primarily from an emotional standpoint. They make $X/hr, and that's pretty much it. You own the business, and your income is (at least in theory) potentially unlimited. To the labor side, it all looks easy. Open a business, make a million, f*** over the workers, buy a BMW. You and I know it isn't like that, but they really don't.

BTW, I've said it before, I'll say it again - I argue this point from perspective of having been at just about ALL different levels. Union worker, non-union worker, s*** jobs, nice jobs, ran my own successful business, ran my own UNsuccessful business. I've seen both sides, folks. Running a business ain't easy, and it sure as HELL isn't guaranteed to succeed. Two of my businesses TANKED, and I lost my ass. When business went bad, I went out and got a job. After a while, I found new opportunities and rebuilt a new business. All the risks were MINE. I took the risk and got the reward. If it wasn't successful, I took the risk and got left with the BILLS. That's the reality of it.
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:22 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
In reply to your edit...

 
quote
Don't you see that the people who run and own these businesses did exactly what you're talkign about? They took those enormous risks, and walked out to the edge of the abyss, all in the name of success. Yet you would complain that once they are able to enjoy that success, they are being unfair to those who are, as I put it, "riding the wave" that the business owner CREATED?? You don't see how your own arguments are completely enforcing my own? With each comment, you emphasize WHY business owners are ballsier than the people who work for them. They are RISK-TAKERS, employees are not. No balls, no blue chips.



You're working an argument that never existed prior in this discussion. No one ever said that the owners weren't bigger risk-takers. No one ever said that they didn't deserve more than the "average" employee". No one ever said that that they didn't deserve credit for the effor they've put into their businesses.

BUT - just because they built the business doesn't give them the ethical right to screw their employees and destroy lives by changing everything part way through. That's just wrong.

Now IF a business is in trouble, then by all means - you have to cut where necessary (I've been through that, it's not fun). And that can be difficult to do. But if you're profitable, and you're covering all your costs (and then some), and business continues to be strong... why screw everyone out of their lives?
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:35 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by MinnGreenGT:

BUT - just because they built the business doesn't give them the ethical right to screw their employees and destroy lives by changing everything part way through. That's just wrong.


Interesting argument. So let's just approach it your way. Based on what your saying, when an employee comes to work for a company, expecting a certain wage, then it's unfair to change that arrangement in the middle. That means the employee should be willing to accept his starting wage and not expect a raise, ever. Or is that unfair as well? If you say yes it's unfair, you're stacking the deck. Your analogy assumes the market, taxes, and expenses are static. They are not. Employees (especially union types) demand more and more money, without regard to the cost of running the business or the fiscal health of the business. Employess expect their paycheck to be the same, or bigger, never smaller. How is that fair or reasonable?
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
I heard on the radio that the dealerships made a new offer, but the news didn't give details of the offer being voted on tomorrow. Eric, if you have time, what is the new offer?
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:56 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:

Interesting argument. So let's just approach it your way. Based on what your saying, when an employee comes to work for a company, expecting a certain wage, then it's unfair to change that arrangement in the middle. That means the employee should be willing to accept his starting wage and not expect a raise, ever. Or is that unfair as well? If you say yes it's unfair, you're stacking the deck. Your analogy assumes the market, taxes, and expenses are static. They are not. Employees (especially union types) demand more and more money, without regard to the cost of running the business or the fiscal health of the business. Employess expect their paycheck to be the same, or bigger, never smaller. How is that fair or reasonable?


No one (union or otherwise) is ever hired without expectation of increased wages... it's generally part of the hiring process ("this is your starting wage... there are reviews every 12 months, etc). I feel that in increase is appropriate based on inflation, as well as business performance, and responsiblities.

At my current company - my wages spiked about 4 or 5 years ago... then we had a round of layoffs, and my wages dropped due to financial issues within the company (small company 6-10 employees, only 4 or 5 are full time). Since then I went almost 3 full years without a pay increase (not even for inflation), and since then my increases have been quite minimal. Do I like it? Not especially (especially when I see the owner spend friviously), but I accept that - because he is the owner.

BTW - I am job shopping again...
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cliffw
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Report this Post04-25-2006 01:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cliffwClick Here to Email cliffwSend a Private Message to cliffwDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
Interesting argument.

Now, never was it mentioned that the rich get greedy. Never was it mentioned that an employee (at least me, an hourly paid employee) is actually in business for himself.
 
quote
Originally posted by aceman:
That mechanic has recourse.

Indeed he does. Striking for better working conditions/pay not being one of them ? Basically striking is doing exactly what you suggest......en mass. Pardon for not being involved from the beginning of this discussion. I did read it all. Did I read too quickly and miss or not grasp what I read ?
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Taijiguy
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Report this Post04-25-2006 02:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TaijiguyClick Here to Email TaijiguySend a Private Message to TaijiguyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by cliffw:

Indeed he does. Striking for better working conditions/pay not being one of them ? Basically striking is doing exactly what you suggest......en mass. Pardon for not being involved from the beginning of this discussion. I did read it all. Did I read too quickly and miss or not grasp what I read ?


It's hard to say if you missed anything. You may just have an opposing opinion. My position is that unions are what's killing enterprise in this country. They want more without regard for the fiscal condition of the company. And in the specific case being cited at the beginning of this thread, a company making a fiscally sound decision that adversly effects the status of some employees. The point I make is, employees have no regard for anything that happens outside of their little orbit. They just want the most pay for the least work, and with unions, will "strike" if something upsets them. I also claim that anyone who thinks a union exists for their benefit is very naive. Unions exist for their own survival, and don't ultimately give a damn about the people they supposedly protect. Ever wonder just how much a teamster chief makes? I looked online and couldn't find that number anywhere. I bet it's a truckload. Uh huh, you think he's worried about you, or keeping the coin rolling in?
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avengador1
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Report this Post04-25-2006 02:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for avengador1Click Here to Email avengador1Send a Private Message to avengador1Direct Link to This Post
We pay our workers around $8 an hour to tend to our machines. They don't make the money for the company, it is our highly automated machines that make the money for the company. I could invest in more automation and replace the employees almost entirely, but we are here to benefit the community by offering jobs.
We charge our customers an hourly rate depending on what size machine their job is running in. This rate can be anywhere from $35 per hour to $45 dollars per hour. Our workers are not highly skilled not do they need to be. They just move parts to boxes basically. The only ones that are compensated more highly than the average workers are the shift supervisors and management. They get the higher compensation because they shoulder more responsibilities and do all the planning and set ups.
Our company also takes most of the profits and returns them to the employees as bonuses twice a year. The rest of the money gets reinvested in the company in the form of new equipment and repairs and the rest goes into a "rainy day" fund. People need to remember that just because a company does multimillion dollars worth of business a year it doesn't mean that the owners are making all that money. You have to remember that there are salaries to be paid, medical plans, sick time, holidays, vacation time, rent, insurance, energy bills, taxes, etc. There isn't very much left in the end.
We are a small company of about 25 workers on three shifts. Our company is also non union and the workers will not welcome one here. They feel we treat them with respect, give them good benefits, and compensate them well enough.
I also have worked both union and non union jobs. The union jobs gave me the feeling that they were just taking my dues to fatten the union. I don't remember getting any benefits for being in the union other than having to be a member of the union to have that job for those particular companies.
I just wanted others to see how things are out there from my perspective.

[This message has been edited by avengador1 (edited 04-25-2006).]

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cliffw
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Report this Post04-25-2006 03:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cliffwClick Here to Email cliffwSend a Private Message to cliffwDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
You may just have an opposing opinion.

My opinion...umm..may be different. More like supporting and opposing....both arguments.
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
My position is that unions are what's killing enterprise in this country.

I can agree but not every enterprise is union staffed. I believe the fact of the matter is companies entered into a contract with employees when they exercised recourse en mass. Companies have what people want to buy and people have the ability to produce it. In a capitalistic society you go for the most you can get. It must have been to the companies benefit to get the people who were the most competent, trained experienced people avaiable. Which is a product! A company is limited by competition yet tied their own hands by agreeing to only hire contracted union help. Which is wrong. As also was wrong was the union strong arming when companies hired pickett line breakers. Or was it wrong ? Of course it was but the companies agreed to a contract they did not live up to. All's fair in love and bussiness ?
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
They want more without regard for the fiscal condition of the company.

As did companies without reguard to the employee which begat unions. Yet again I can agree......
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
Unions exist for their own survival, and don't ultimately give a damn about the people they supposedly protect.
........to a point.
Are'nt we generalizing ?
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
The point I make is, employees have no regard for anything that happens outside of their little orbit.

And do companies not orbit around profit ?
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
They just want the most pay for the least work..........

"The winner of the contract goes to the lowest bidder" Which is why a non unioned less experienced worker should be allowed to offer his services for less. Which is not happening in this thread's case.
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:
Ever wonder just how much a teamster chief makes?

Let's look at it a different way. How about how much a running back in the NFL makes? A CEO (employee) of a major company? An actor? The owner of any company?
The answer to all is as much as they can get.
This thread is sort of like "Is the glass half empty or half full."
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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-25-2006 03:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Taijiguy:

They want more without regard for the fiscal condition of the company. And in the specific case being cited at the beginning of this thread, a company making a fiscally sound decision that adversly effects the status of some employees.


I'm not sure where you got that example from. If you read Racingman24's post closely, you'll see that the employees are/were not asking for more than they had before... but rather to remain at the same rate and not take a significant pay cut that could equate to a 25% or more drop in total earnings (noting that the company was/is not under any financial strain at the moment).

If they were under financial strain... then scaling back and/or downsizing before it got out of hand (see NWA) would be a very wise move.


I also want to make it clear that it's impossible to classify all union workers together in one lump opinion. There has been mention of the "lazy" taking advantage of their position thanks to the union's rules. But let's look specifically at an automotive shop (since it's what is truly in question here) in comparison to a union "builder".

A Union Builder is restricted to 40hrs/week. They work there 40... and when the "whistle blows" they're done and heading home (irregardless of what still needs to be finished on-site). They don't have to take any solid interest in their work, nor do they really have to complete it quickly in order to get paid for their time. In this situation, the lazy take advantage of the system by working at maybe only 75% of their abilities in order to make a bigger paycheck.

This is not the case in the auto shop. Every project is billed to both the customer and the employee at "book rate" - something that is established for the protection of both the customer and the shop (so neither is "taken"). So the motivated mechanic gets a project that books 2 hours, but it only takes him one hour to complete it... he is rewarded by being free to take another project. The average mechanic gets the same 2 hour project... and it takes him 2 hours. He is paid apprioprately for his time. The lazy mechanic gets the same 2 hour project, but slacks and it takes him 3 hours. He is still only paid for 2 hours time... and is punished by loosing an hour that could've been spent on another paying project. None get paid for their time until the project is DONE. And if the car comes back with an issue related to the mechanic's recent repair - he may be docked time that it takes to repair his mistakes. Of course sometimes this can be a negative thing (when time gets long on a project due to unforseen issues), but in general it keeps the employees from becoming your average "union slacker" that everyone bitches about.

[This message has been edited by MinnGreenGT (edited 04-25-2006).]

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cliffw
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Report this Post04-25-2006 03:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cliffwClick Here to Email cliffwSend a Private Message to cliffwDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by avengador1:
I could invest in more automation and replace the employees almost entirely, but we are here to benefit the community by offering jobs.

Cough cough.
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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-25-2006 08:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
Unions do not always just want more money. That is so untrue.

When I worked for General Motors in the 80ís the union took pay cuts, we took benefit cuts. The union made no gripes we all knew we had to and did, and voted for it.

Unions are there for the workers but work with the companies to so that they donít run a company into the ground.

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Report this Post04-25-2006 08:50 PM Click Here to See the Profile for avengador1Click Here to Email avengador1Send a Private Message to avengador1Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Cough cough.

I knew my comment about replacing workers with machines would get a rise out of someone.
The bottom line is that would not be practical. We would rather invest in people than equipment. The machines, as smart as they are, cannot see if the parts are coming out bad or with imperfections, while people can. This saves us a lot of rework and inspection when it is done correctly.
Most of our workers are friends, neighbors, and relatives of each other so they are a pretty tight knit group. They also mostly live in the nearby neighborhood.
Our workers are highly dependable and loyal and we try to do the best we can for them too.
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Report this Post04-25-2006 11:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for pokeyfieroClick Here to visit pokeyfiero's HomePageClick Here to Email pokeyfieroSend a Private Message to pokeyfieroDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by 84fiero123:

but work with the companies to so that they donít run a company into the ground.



Not into the ground on purpose but they try and bleed whatever they can and since they are not very good at that they tend to take to much. They are not protecting you. They are their own business and you are the product they make money with.

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Report this Post04-25-2006 11:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Scott-WaClick Here to visit Scott-Wa's HomePageClick Here to Email Scott-WaSend a Private Message to Scott-WaDirect Link to This Post
Can someone live on $8/hr there? You couldn't pay for rent and food alone here at that rate. I'd guess take home would be about $900 a month after taxes if full time and if they can afford any medical benefits (about 31% taxes and deductions here).

I thought Conneticut was a pretty expensive place to live, do most of your employees live on the street / work multiple jobs / have spouses making the real money?
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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-26-2006 10:07 AM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by aceman:

I heard on the radio that the dealerships made a new offer, but the news didn't give details of the offer being voted on tomorrow. Eric, if you have time, what is the new offer?


I spoke with another friend of mine who is a Sr. Tech at Downtown Jaguar here in Minneapolis... they are also on strike. Although they haven't seen the actual text of the new contract offer, the only change they are currently aware of is that the "journeymen" would get roughly a $1/hr bump in "light duty" tech pay over that of the first contract (effectively still dropping them from roughly $23/hr down to $18 for those projects). He also pointed out that their "shop rate" as billed to their clients was just bumped $10/hour no more than a few months ago...

From what I understand, this union is made up of roughly 50% Techs & 50% Parts & Service Writers... and that the initial vote "down" did not clear by much majority (only by 76 or 176 votes... he didn't recall for certain). So he's rather concerned that it may pass this time around by a small margin (effectively giving him at least a 25% paycut). All that and he has a baby less than 6 months old and 2 school age children... <shakes head>

Eric/Racingman24 just called... he's on his way to the union hall in Minneapolis for the vote this morning. Didn't sound too pleased either

[This message has been edited by MinnGreenGT (edited 04-26-2006).]

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MinnGreenGT
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Report this Post04-27-2006 11:16 AM Click Here to See the Profile for MinnGreenGTClick Here to visit MinnGreenGT's HomePageClick Here to Email MinnGreenGTSend a Private Message to MinnGreenGTDirect Link to This Post
Talked to Eric last night... the new contract was voted down by only 21 votes... back to the negotiations board!
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Racingman24
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Report this Post04-27-2006 11:46 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Racingman24Click Here to visit Racingman24's HomePageClick Here to Email Racingman24Send a Private Message to Racingman24Direct Link to This Post
Yea, it got tossed by 21 votes. I just hope St. Paul follows.

I thought that I would only post once in here, and the closed mindedness of some people really wanted to make me keep it that way. You guys have absolutley no idea what is going on, and how it's playing out.

I'm aware that companies are out to make a profit, and I'm also aware that our dealership is doing just fine, and that those that aren't, most of the time it's because of crappy managment. How and why does that make it the tech's fault for the managers inability to do his job right?

And as was stated, Downtown Jag just recently up'd their labor rate. And we at Sears will do the same as soon as we go back to work. Do you honestly think the owners will give the cust. a break on this "light duty" crap? No, they won't. It's all going to go directly into their pocket.

Now, if the owners wanted to make more money, and they up'd the labor rate, let's say, 10$. And they only give the tech's, let's be generous and say, 1$/hr raise. No one would complain. But the owners are trying to just line their pockets while destroying their employees lives. A raise in labor rate and a cut in wages. One or the other boys, not both. Everyone with me now?

Also, I truley believe that we are seting a national standard here. If we allow the owners to push us around with the "light duty" stuff, you think dealers around the country won't notice and follow suit? I don't think we, the techs, are being greedy. I think that most of the people on here are so closed mind, that they just don't care what the true argument is about. And therefore, multiple "anti-union" BS has poped up. And rambling's that have nothing to do with the original statment/discussion.

Again, don't get me wrong, I'm not a "pro-union" kinda guy. And to be honest with you, as soon as I see the owner, I'm personally going to try and sit down with him and see what he'll do for us, if we kick the union out. Because every person on the strike line that I talked to, minus one, wants the union gone. But, as I said in my original post, as of now, we are still part of the union, so I will stand in support of all of my brothers.

Eric
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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-27-2006 12:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Racingman24:

Yea, it got tossed by 21 votes. I just hope St. Paul follows.

I thought that I would only post once in here, and the closed mindedness of some people really wanted to make me keep it that way. You guys have absolutley no idea what is going on, and how it's playing out.

I'm aware that companies are out to make a profit, and I'm also aware that our dealership is doing just fine, and that those that aren't, most of the time it's because of crappy managment. How and why does that make it the tech's fault for the managers inability to do his job right?

And as was stated, Downtown Jag just recently up'd their labor rate. And we at Sears will do the same as soon as we go back to work. Do you honestly think the owners will give the cust. a break on this "light duty" crap? No, they won't. It's all going to go directly into their pocket.

Now, if the owners wanted to make more money, and they up'd the labor rate, let's say, 10$. And they only give the tech's, let's be generous and say, 1$/hr raise. No one would complain. But the owners are trying to just line their pockets while destroying their employees lives. A raise in labor rate and a cut in wages. One or the other boys, not both. Everyone with me now?

Also, I truley believe that we are seting a national standard here. If we allow the owners to push us around with the "light duty" stuff, you think dealers around the country won't notice and follow suit? I don't think we, the techs, are being greedy. I think that most of the people on here are so closed mind, that they just don't care what the true argument is about. And therefore, multiple "anti-union" BS has poped up. And rambling's that have nothing to do with the original statment/discussion.

Again, don't get me wrong, I'm not a "pro-union" kinda guy. And to be honest with you, as soon as I see the owner, I'm personally going to try and sit down with him and see what he'll do for us, if we kick the union out. Because every person on the strike line that I talked to, minus one, wants the union gone. But, as I said in my original post, as of now, we are still part of the union, so I will stand in support of all of my brothers.

Eric


I completely agree with you, but the people here that own a company or think they know something will never change their stand.

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technology is great when it works
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't.
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.

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aceman
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Report this Post04-27-2006 01:51 PM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
Eric,
Help me understand this issue better:

What percent of you hours are spent on the "low tech" jobs?

If you weren't doing the low tech jobs does everyone of the journeyman mechanics have enough to do to complete a 40hr week?

Is it possible that management doing this.... (Simple math here) They have 10 mechanics @ $22/hr. (400 man hours each week). Those 10 mechanics do 280 hours of what management considers high tech work and 120 hours of low tech work. Thus, from the newspaper, management wants to create a "Low tech position paying $17/hr. The reality is that they'e trying to squeeze out 3 journeyman mechanics, who refuse to work at a different rate and once those 3 mechanics quit, they now have 3 position openings for 3 low tech mechanics? This is not the "fairest" thing to do, but business is business.

Now the next question.....How much are you losing each week that you're on strike? Is it really worth it?


I'm not in this argument saying that you're skills aren't worth the wage you're getting. But is it good business practice to have you doing jobs that you're "over-skilled" in?


Yes, I am 100% against unions today. I grew up in a farming community with small businesses. The only union issues I saw was when my father negotiating contracts with the city's union employees. It disgusted me what these guys thought they were worth and how "important" they were to make the city work. There were 5-10 people qualified and ready to take thier jobs at a lesser wage and benefit and they weren't treated poorly or paid poorly.
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84fiero123
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Report this Post04-27-2006 02:09 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 84fiero123Click Here to Email 84fiero123Send a Private Message to 84fiero123Direct Link to This Post
See what I mean,

------------------
technology is great when it works
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't.
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.

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Report this Post04-27-2006 05:45 PM Click Here to See the Profile for acemanSend a Private Message to acemanDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by 84fiero123:

See what I mean,



Sorry, 84Fiero123, my collar is as blue right now as your collar ever was. OSHA doesn't apply to where I work Bitching about crappy work conditions don't apply to me. I have no influence over my pay raises or what jobs I do. I currently don't have the right to quit my job right now!

I've been on both sides of the fence. I was raised by a father that was a City Manager and a Chamber of Commerce Manager and a mother that owned a pre-school and an H&R Block Office. I've owned a successful business (H&R Block Office). I've worked as a clerk and a manager in a Hotel and Bar&Restaurant. I've even worked in a meat-packing plant. I'm college educated. I'm a blue collar/dirty white collar Soldier right now. I can see a broad spectrum whereas you are narrow-visioned in just seeing the employee's side.
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