VW Doesn't Need The Labor Unions - And Response

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

There was a time in this world when unions (then known as guilds) were a necessity in order to protect women and children from workplace abuse. Guilds really got their start during the Industrial Revolution both here and in Britain when millinery bosses would coerce workers (actually entire families) to work almost around-the-clock, sleeping on earthen factory floors after 18 hour days...and for pennies. 

By contrast, modern unions, AFL-CIO, UAW, et al, have suffered massive migration away from union representation whether by choice or due to company migration to another state or country where unions have no choke hold on industry; where even government intervention prevents the intrusion of the slippery-slope of unionism.

I remember back in the early 70's riding Amtrak from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta sitting next to a rather affable individual returning from a four-week vacation from a "Big 3" auto plant in Georgia. He was riding high on something or one would never have expected him to reveal that he made over $60,000 a year (1970's money, mind you). When I asked him how he did it he said that the factory had been running night-and-day mandating at least four hours of overtime per day. It came as quite a surprise for me to learn that for such a skilled labor pay scale, he simply swept floors (and not even that much because the union mandated that he have a trainee with him most of the time). An apprentice with two-years of mandatory servitude to gain tenure. Please stop laughing...this is true and not a "dig" at the janitorial profession. 

I doubt that plant is open anymore, probably moved to Mexico. This janitorial technician laughed his way right out of job supporting his union's forced arbitration. Sounds a lot like what happened to Hostess.

I worked for the AFL-CIO for a few years in St. Louis (47 years ago). I couldn't get a job otherwise in union-locked St. Louis. In hindsight, I should have starved rather than offering any support to such an evil empire. It's funny how current union laborers criticize me, calling me a turncoat, a traitor, a scab. But it's water rolling off a duck's back because those who accuse me of such heinous crimes are currently unemployed because of misplaced trust in representation promising to get their jobs back. 

Now the unions, having made wastelands of the steel belt up north are hoping to find fertile (read: ignorant) soil down south. They don't have any choice. With union membership (and dues) withering at an exponential pace, the UAW, for example, having a third of their rolls from 20 years ago, must still pay massive pensions to retired workers...more money dolled out than comes in. The UAW is in panic mode and will promise (VW) workers the world but will never be able to keep their word. They hope to get a small number of unknowing workers to shill for them, getting a foothold in our VW plant for at least a dozen years before VW finally gets tired of the UAW and (again) moves everything down to Mexico. The UAW, if allowed, will put Chattanooga back into a 70's-like depression when our foundries were bled dry.

If you work for VW and you encounter one of the planted UAW shills, I urge you to ostracize these individuals. Even they are ignorant of the fact that they are pawns for a desperate and declining union who, in the end, will alienate Chattanooga's nurtured re-entry into industrial America and force VW to seek a less hostile environment elsewhere. This is not VW's first rodeo with the UAW. In the late 70's, VW balked and walked...all the way down to Puebla, Mexico. Folks, the UAW won't pay gas money for that kind of commute. 

Yes, there was a time when labor unions were the salvation of many abused industries. But that time has long since come-and-gone. Empty promises and eventual lost employment is traditionally and historically the only representation the UAW offers you at VW.

They need you to survive. You don't need them. 

David D. Fihn
Hixson 

* * * 

If there was a way possible for the public to work at VW, David just might think differently. I agree that the unions of the past are about money and not much more.  I have been a teamster for two decades and believe there has been a lot of hostility between the employees and management.  This was almost a necessity at the time.   

Now, here in Chattanooga, VW has offered their employees the representation and relationship with management that all other VW employees around the world receive. Due to U.S. labor laws, there needs to be a recognised union to represent the employee.  The Works Council is made of of employees to create this relationship. If any person decides not to join, they simply do not join. No pressure. 

Folks who do not understand the plant or how VW operates need to educate themselves on both sides before reaching an educated decision.  Outsiders who do not work there need to stay out of VW's business and simply mind their own. 

Edward Hunter
Volkswagen Team Member


Despite SROs, Walled Compounds Bring Violent Intruders On Themselves

People in live in terror of a school massacre, near enough to plan for yet far enough away that no one need act in panic or haste. Barely do paramilitary drills such as that  Monday  in Monteagle ease their fears.  An “active shooter drill,” as David Carroll reports it, quietly rolled along among three police agencies at Monteagle Elementary School, with ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Sleepless In Seattle

I am hardly a technophile, but somewhere down the line I became fascinated with a crowd-funding website called Indiegogo. Every once in a while I’ll pop in to marvel at the cleverness of the people who live among us and yesterday, almost by accident, I crossed paths via the website with a beautiful guy named Eddie Wang. Eddie just graduated from the University of Washington and ... (click for more)

County Schools Have Plan To Put Security Cameras At Every School

The Hamilton County Schools have a plan to put security cameras in every school, Supt. Rick Smith told the County School Board Thursday night. He said the money would come from the $2,201,000 the schools received last year from the sale of the old Ooltewah Elementary School property. The proposal must get approval from the School Board at the December meeting, then from the ... (click for more)

Bryant Found Guilty Of Aggravated Rape, Robbery In Finley Stadium Jogger Case

A Criminal Court jury on Thursday afternoon, found Devontavious Bryant guilty of aggravated rape and robbery in the October 20, 2012 rape of a woman jogging past Finley Stadium.   Sentencing by Judge Don Poole is Jan. 5. Bryant decided to testify, saying, "I didn't rape that woman." He told prosecutor Cameron Williams, "I can't force the jury to believe nothing ... (click for more)

Baylor Must Contend With MBA's Chandler In DII-AA Semis

If there is one thing different about Friday’s TSSAA Division II-AA semifinal playoff game between Baylor and Montgomery Bell Academy at Tommy Owen Stadium in Nashville from the teams’ regular-season matchup, Red Raiders coach Phil Massey knows exactly what it is. Or, well, who it is. It’s Ty Chandler. Chandler, a 6-foot, 180-pound sophomore running back, has added ... (click for more)

Lee Women Win NCCAA Mid-East Region Soccer Title

The Lee women's soccer team laid claim to the NCCAA Mid-East Region title for the second straight year as they defeated Campbellsville University, 4-0 on a bitterly cold Wednesday night at the Lee Soccer Field. With temperatures dropping into the thirties the Lady Flames heated things up on the field jumping out to an early lead on a goal by senior forward Kathryn Healy ... (click for more)