Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Return of the repression

Well, I reported ont he Goodyear tyre factory strike. Seems they won - Goodyear that is.

Money shot:
The world's third-largest tiremaker said Tuesday the multimillion dollar cost of a three-month strike by union workers is well worth the long-term savings Goodyear expects to see from the new labor deal.

The strikers included about 2,000 workers at a plant in Fayetteville, N.C.

During a conference call with analysts and reporters, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. chief financial officer Richard Kramer said the strike that began Oct. 5 and ended last week drained between $30 million and $35 million a week from the company.

At 12 weeks long, that means the work stoppage by the United Steelworkers union representing some 15,000 workers could cost Goodyear between $360 million and $420 million, most of it in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31.

Kramer and Goodyear Chief Executive Robert Keegan cushioned the news by saying the company plans to save $610 million over three years because of the agreement reached with the union two weeks ago and annual savings of about $300 million after that.
That's a hell of a balance sheet, losing $420 million to make $610 million - but the point is, they won.

The Kansan lists the trophies:
INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY: $300 million, including $60 million in overtime cuts and $90 million by paying new hires a lower starting wage and benefits package.

REDUCED CAPACITY: $75 million through cutting jobs, including closing unprofitable Tyler, Texas, plant that employs 1,100 people and reducing the number of tires made by about 21 million.

CUTTING RETIREE COSTS: $275 million by eliminating Goodyear's future obligation to health care for retired union workers by making a one-time $1 billion contribution to an independent Voluntary Employees' Beneficiary Association trust fund.

These are the stakes we are fighting for, this is what we are against - seems its a day of wine and roses for the bosses, no bread and roses for the workers. Wages down, health protection cut, unemployment - the scrap heap, the scrap heap.

Got that - the workers and the capitalists have nothing in common, and their conflict of inetrests results in a Class War. Never forget.

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Anonymous a very public sociologist said...

How the hell did the union sell such a deal to the workforce?

12:46 PM  
Blogger Bill said...

I assume, after three months on strike, threats of military intervention and a determined management, that they were broken and skint.

1:18 PM  

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