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Re: the effects of the strike on other workers...my father worked for GM for 41 years. He was a UAW local union president, member of the UAW National Ways and Means Committee, and as he got close to retirement, shop steward in a plant of almost 3000 men at its peak production. I remember the strikes, plant closings, and the annual shut downs, all of which took their toll on the family finances. The membership stood together on prinicples back then...my father and the other workers had been through lean times before and after WWII, and seemed to share an idealogical comraderie that sustained them through the strikes. In the overall scheme of things the auto workers of my father's era did not enjoy the benefits that today's workers seem to have.
Today's strikes, and the resulting ripple effects (closings)are presented as potentially devastating for GM and its bottom line. The implication is that the company will be brought to its "economic" senses and will soon settle. As has been noted on this board, the UAW membership is not saved from the same economic "hardships". The average worker can little afford a long strike, coupled with a two week retooling closing, esepcially if he/she is not being paid for that time off. The workers in the plants closed as a result of the lack of parts, etc. may not be of one supportive mind. They may not be as committed to the cause as the leadership would have the public believe.
IMHO the strike will run its course after both sides have taken to the press to blame each other for the length of the shut down (maybe two more weeks). After all the posturing, there will be some type of agreement, influenced by worker and share holder backlash. It will be interesting to see how entrenched the company is regarding its position on less expensive, more efficient production of parts in Mexico. This one point will not only impact the bottom line, but will also set the stage for future concessions by the UAW.

Opnions? Thanks for your indulgence with such a long message.

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