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Michigan could become the nation's 24th right-to-work state as a grassroots campaign starts to...

Michigan could become the nation's 24th right-to-work state as a grassroots campaign starts to register with politicians considering a bill. Governor Rick Snyder says the issue of requiring financial support of a union as a condition of employment is now "on the agenda" for consideration. Tracking the bill closely: General Motors (GM), Ford (F), and Chrysler (FIATY.PK).
Comments (34)
  • As investors we know profits are king, but this would push whatever work force we have in Michigan back to the poverty line. There seems to be no morality in the corporate world. It's why I left 40+ years ago and created small businesses that I owned from then on. I could and did control my own destiny and just fully retired at age 71. Our kids are doing the same thing....and I am very proud of them.
    5 Dec 2012, 07:32 AM Reply Like
  • Back to the poverty line? Hyperbole much?
    5 Dec 2012, 07:43 AM Reply Like
  • WR - Really? And how did those contract negotiations with your forced-to-join and must pay the union-membership-fees employees go? Did they threaten to strike unless you gave them Opening of Day of Deer Season off and call it "Veteran's Day", thus dishonoring our Veterans? Did they force you to give 20% cost of living raises and bonuses to them over 4 years while you had to take a loss and sell off half the business to an investment house?
    5 Dec 2012, 11:59 AM Reply Like
  • Oh, and I assume your small business was a union shop?
    5 Dec 2012, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • Tdot in the non union south auto factories. It is non union workers who wanted off the opening of hunting season. They threatened to fire them. But so many missed they made it into a paid day.
    5 Dec 2012, 02:44 PM Reply Like
  • tdot Down south in a non union auto plant. The workers wanted opening day to hunt off. The company said no and threatened to fire them. They found out if they fired these employees. They could not run an efficient factory. So then hunting day arrived and the employees got the day off. They were not fired.
    5 Dec 2012, 02:46 PM Reply Like
  • bibol - completely missed the point. Had nothing to do with holidays, that was incidental.


    The point is, here we have someone who stereotypes the profitable corporate world as immoral, driving the Michigan work force into poverty. He claims to have left such a corrupt system, and then created and owned his own small businesses.


    So ... were his employees unionized (and thus paying union dues per force)? Or were they given the right to work without a union? Did they have a choice either way? Hypocrisy much?
    6 Dec 2012, 01:52 PM Reply Like
  • Most corporations are immoral. Corporations in the meat industries. Cut wages and used illegal aliens to lower wages. One plant manager told corporate headquarters. That he needed to increase pay to keep non union workers. They told him to lower wages. The only way he could was to hire illegal workers. Textile Corporations outsourced non union jobs to China. For very low wages. I could go on and on with even more examples.
    8 Dec 2012, 02:05 PM Reply Like
  • Good for you Gov. Snyder. I'm always amazed at the push back from Unions about something so simple as right to work laws.


    You look at what happened in Wisconsin. Gov Walker simply made it voluntary to be in the union, and pay union dues. The state was NO longer mandatorily collecting dues, and handing them over to the union. When the contribution and participation in the union became voluntary. The membership dropped dramatically. Wonder why unions hate these laws? Simple, because their members know the union is full of horse poop. My Wife worked as a teacher in IL, all of her younger teacher friends absolutely despise the union. It's a waste of money, you have no choice but to be in it, and that's it. You have another dissenting opinion from your comrades in the Union, sit down, shut up, or you'll be mocked and bullied out of your job.


    Go Gov Snyder. It takes leaders with principle, and guts to stand up to these unions. You want to see what happens when we don't? Look at my state (IL). Our $180B pension liabilities, with about $80B in the bank to pay for them. I'm no math major, but that's a bad equation.
    5 Dec 2012, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • Unions have long used their political influence to have laws pasted whereby everyone working for a union-shop has to support the union by paying dues. The power of law is the power of physical force; government has the courts and the guns to back the courts' decisions. Any organization, be it union or otherwise, seeking laws to benefit them at an individuals expense is un-American. The power of a wage offer from a company or individual is a value of dollars and benefits in exchange for your service (value) as an employee; there is no force in this voluntary recognition and exchange of value for a value. It is about time the American public, including unions and their members, realize that government-backed initiation of force is ugly and truly un-American. A right to refuse a union as well as the right to turn down an offer of employment is an individual right and to violate this right in principle is a egregious violation of all individual rights.
    5 Dec 2012, 09:35 AM Reply Like
  • Been in the UAW, Teamsters and AFL/CIO and many years in white collar management. Never seen a union where they gave a rats butt about quality of work, pride in craftsmanship or the welfare of the company or the community they live in.


    They were run by mobsters in the beginning and they have the same mentality now. They're selfish, greedy, think like thugs and think that their own excessive demands are good for the community. "Buy American" and "Pay Extortion" are one in the same.


    Unions believe higher prices are good for the community because it's good for them. They buy politicians and corrupt the system all in the name of goon greed. Teachers are the worse, they use our kids as human shields and demand outrageous wages and benefits to work 40 hours a week for nine months then retire with a hand full of phony online degrees to double and triple retirement benefits. And they produce kids with liberal brainwashing and few skills.


    Come on Snyder - man up and save Michigan...........!
    5 Dec 2012, 09:44 AM Reply Like
  • "Right to work"= Right to work at peon wages and right to be fired just because.
    Want to see a state slide in quality of life? Get rid of the unions. Go on, enjoy paying the welfare costs of hundreds of thousands of Wal-Mart employees. You are already paying the welfare costs of the people on Wall Street who swindled this country blind. Might as well go whole hog.
    5 Dec 2012, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • After reading these comments, I personally (if it means anything) agree with you Khyber Pass. No where in any of these well meaning comments did I see anything about the obscene salaries of the corporate bosses No...i'm not in a union, I do however sympathize with their well intent, but disagree with a lot of their ridiculous demands. Once again, everyone needs a voice after all what is this country...The "united" Stated.
    5 Dec 2012, 02:35 PM Reply Like
  • Back when I was in school I was working at UPS. As part of the teamsters union, I received full health, 401k, and access to a lawyer for a few measly bucks a month in membership fees.


    Tell me please where else does a private company offer these kinds of benefits at a low level/skill job? Probably not many examples.


    But i'm sure everyone has plenty of examples of CEO's/board members making grossly overpaid bonuses while laying off workers and claiming that without laying them off the company can't make a profit.


    Like hostess closing the company and then paying like 1.8 billion to their executives, and today citigroup announcing 11000 layed off and their stock price shoots up 5 percent.


    I like making money and believe in free markets, but it's obvious that the advantage is shifted towards those in control of the company with very little say or security for those workers at the bottom who make many of these operations possible and profitable.
    5 Dec 2012, 05:49 PM Reply Like
  • Hooray!
    5 Dec 2012, 01:59 PM Reply Like
  • Companies rarely fire someone who does their job and if they have work. But unions protect members who are psycho's, drug addicts, drunks, lazy and unproductive misfits, and even those who threaten fellow members.


    For years I had to chaperone women entering the manufacturing area so they wouldn't get verbally or physically abused. Oh yeah it was like walking through a zoo wrapped in raw hamburger.


    What did the unions do? Hey, boys will be boys.......
    5 Dec 2012, 03:51 PM Reply Like
  • Maybe you could actually take part in the union? Run for office. Get named to a board. Speak up, union or not. You are as entitled to safety on the job as that woman was to have a job. But sitting back and letting others run everything is not going to get you what you want--unless all you want is the same privilege that woman had, or the increases benefits and pay you could look forward to that were made possible by others in the union. If you want change, then be the change.
    6 Dec 2012, 01:17 PM Reply Like
  • Please open your eyes. Many an employer will replace any good worker with another who will take half the pay. Have you seen many defined benefit pension plans offerer to workers recently? Being a loyal, dependible worker is no longer equal to job security and a living wage.
    If you want to find abuses there are more than enough on both sides.
    6 Dec 2012, 10:40 PM Reply Like
  • Right to work only way to go!
    Unions 'were' good when they first came into the fabric of American industry to stop the inequities, but then soon became the demon by forcing their demands using their power on those that created the jobs and paid the wages. In turn forcing prices higher and causing non union small businesses to charge higher prices to earn more money to pay for the higher priced union products. Causing unprecedented inflation.
    5 Dec 2012, 06:41 PM Reply Like
  • I see your point, and agree in part. But the current inflation is caused by other forces than just the union: the printing of money, whether bills from the mint or dollars added to your credit card--it's all the same as printing money. Too much money in circulation. When the govt creates a pot of money big enough to sail an aircraft carrier through it, you will always have someone shrewd enough and greedy enough to grab it, so when medicare was started, that gave the greedy and shrewd a way to scoop it up in medical businesses, the same as printing money; wars, the govt sent palletloads of cash to Afghanistan, which had no mechanisms in place to keep track of it all, making wealthy a large number of people who were shrewd enough, greedy enough, and well connected enough to grab it and run. Billions of dollars have "disappeared."


    You didn't think the Caymen Island, etc, banking places and money laundering outfits were just dreamed up out of thin air, did you? No, they were created by people who saw opportunity and took it. The american capitalist and robber baron way. That missing money is no doubt on the books as part of our national debt.


    One world capitalism: how come few people get it that when a company offshores and pay less to buy the wholesale product and then sells it to you it as if it were still made in USA by american workers (union or not) there is a bulge of money left. Standard US economics, buy cheap and sell dear and pocket the difference.


    If they gave american customers a break equal to even a portion of the savings, we'd be doing okay, but instead the guys running the US companies increase their salaries and golden parachutes by the amount they are saving, thereby helping themselves rise to the top of the earning scale while not only killing your job, but making you pay more for an often inferior, more cheaply made product.


    Then, the powers that be, who decide how much they will pay you to borrow your money (what they pay is called interest), will pay you less than a percent and pocket your money while breaking the system. You have to pay 6% and up, I'd guess, to borrow the money your neighbor loaned the bank, while he pays the same to borrow yours, but the bank is paying less than one percent to use the money of both of you to loan at 6%+ to their customers. Wh


    Who gets the difference? Bankers, not the customers, nor the citizens. Then the banks add insult to injury by getting you the taxpayer to bail them out when they have used your money in buying their 3rd home in europe and a plane to get back and forth and still they haven't sucked enough from the customers to pay their exhorbitant salaries and their first through third or tenth mortgage. There's more, but i usually get paid to look at the big picture so i'm giving you the free sample.


    If you blame unions for all the money trouble in this country, you are looking at only the elephant's tail, making you think an elephant is shaped like a snake. It takes a whole lot of moving parts to make or break an economy. So try looking at the big picture.
    6 Dec 2012, 01:33 PM Reply Like
  • why is it every time the stock market hits a bump, share holders scream damn unions they ask for to much. well I can remember the days when a foreman could fire you on the spot just for being in a bad mood. or scream at you for blood going down the line Those benefits and wages came from hard work and negotiations over years.if you want to see a company thrive go after the head, CEOs and salary personnel are what bleed a company. unions, with out them there would still be work camps and company stores .
    5 Dec 2012, 10:05 PM Reply Like
  • I have said before, i'm not or have not been in a union but I personally have to agree with you...Guys like Ryandan are typical examples of why unions were created in the first place. Sure there are some bad apples in the unions (none in top management....yeh). The unions are and have been making efforts to eliminate users in their ranks..It would be nice if the guys at the top would do the same. Once again, this country is the "United" States. Who was it that said united we stand, divided we fall?
    6 Dec 2012, 01:26 PM Reply Like
  • I am a retired ford worker who has had ulcers,hernia,and some carpel tunnel, and over the years I have seen enormous changes in the work force for the wasn't the company's good will that brought it on ,but solidarity.
    5 Dec 2012, 10:24 PM Reply Like
  • It's not a matter of benevolent/ avaricious bosses or corrupt/enlightened labor. It's a question of balance or as we say "a level playing field". Walmart pays thousands of good, dependable workers a sub-poverty wage (which we supplement with food stamps) while Costco pays an employee with 4 years service 40k plus benefits. Few are enlightened as Ben and Jerry or Costco. Organized labor has power that thousands if freedom loving, rugged individuals do not have. Read our history. Corporations are NOT people and have no interest in the common good.
    6 Dec 2012, 04:19 PM Reply Like
  • OK, and the solution to the "problem" you describe is to FORCE workers to join a union and pay union fees, whether they want to join or not? And to deny employment to people who do not wish to join the union?


    Right to work only allows workers to choose whether they want to join the local union and pay its fees in exchange for collective representation in contract negotiations (and the rampant funding of certain political initiatives and sympathetic politicians and candidates for public office). It does not empower companies to disband unions or any of the other things that seem to be getting assumed here.


    In any case, even with the proposed legislation, the US based automakers are not going to be getting rid of their unions any time in the foreseeable future. The unions would have to disband on their own initiative first, and that ain't likely any time soon.


    At best, if the legislation passes (which appears likely), then the automakers could potentially start to offer some new jobs as "union membership optional". New hires who choose not to be represented (and charged) by the local union could end up with better wages and benefits at the end of the day.
    6 Dec 2012, 06:24 PM Reply Like
  • I think what were missing here is the fact that unions need money and the ability to strike .with out the ability for everyone to strike, it's like a law with out punishment,it means nothing. also there's times when a company will bring in scab labor, I see this running rampid. a union needs money to lobby like company's do and to help there rank and file when times get bad. I believe it's just another way to break up the unions something that's been going on from day one.
    6 Dec 2012, 07:12 PM Reply Like
  • You want the ability to you can take over and influence the operation of the company right? You want to be owners too and it's justified by your band of Robin Hood's.
    7 Dec 2012, 08:42 AM Reply Like
  • I get tired of hearing about high CEO salaries. Yeah, they're high, and so are football, basketball, and baseball, players. So are teachers who retire at full pay - forever - while working fewer hours than any other profession. So are people who install bumpers on a car and think that kind of challenging work entitled them to 100k a year in pay and benefits. How about the lifeguards in CA making 150k a year? Unions don't make things fair - they allow a little merry group of thieves to steal from everyone else in the community with impunity.


    18,000 people out of work for Christmas over the great cupcake war. Now there's the black heart of a union at work.
    7 Dec 2012, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • Yeah but the CEO's and execs of that great cupcake company ended up with a 1.8 billion dollar windfall.


    Tell me what would have been a better benefit to the economy, share that 1.8 billion between the 18000 workers who are probably poor and really need that money, or give it to the handfull of execs who probably have millions in the bank and are well enough connected to land another high paying job anyways?
    8 Dec 2012, 09:58 AM Reply Like
  • I think that was 1.8 million and they were paid that to stay with the company instead of looking elsewhere. Those managers were key to keeping the company running if the union didn't pull the plug.
    9 Dec 2012, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • Typical comment from must be or you are a life guard or maybe you are one of those over paid ceo's....I bet you are making a ton of money...yeh.
    9 Dec 2012, 10:26 PM Reply Like
  • Moran, if you're going to chase me around the comment circuit at least try to keep up with the conversation.


    I don't mind your opposing view - it's when it doesn't match anything that gets confusing and tells me you got more time on your hands than the rest of us.


    "i must be a life guard or over paid CEO" ???? If I were a CEO I wouldn't have time to be here keeping you busy and you already know I live in the Detroit area - we don't need life guards!
    10 Dec 2012, 09:41 AM Reply Like
  • What about your typical comment on Dec 7 saying your were tired of hearing about high paid ceo's and that sports players were high paid and thoses under worked and over paid teachers and life guards in Cs making 150,000 a year.....Is that keeping up with the comment circuit? At least ceo's don't have to worry about some gun crazy walking in and blowing them away...
    16 Dec 2012, 02:19 PM Reply Like
  • How about walking out of a Health Company with 100's of Millions? Seen it happen, would pay a lot of claims or reduce premiums. Our big ones have about 30% operating costs. I know the conversation is turning away of GM this becoming a blog that I don't often see on here.
    I'm retiring finally at 72 from a small business, the only way to go in my opinion.
    8 Dec 2012, 10:05 AM Reply Like
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