Who is really Killing GM...The Union? or GM?

From what I have been reading, but maybe I am reading it wrong but it seems the real culprit in GMs problems is the union. It seems like the union has
GM by the balls and is holding them hostage. How many jobs do you know where you get paid for not working when the assembly lines shut down for whatever reason and your medical care is paid for you 100%? Seems like union workers have it pretty good for turning some screws. Lets face it these union contracts are based on working conditions they faced in 1930 when things were bad for everybody during the depression. But this is the 21st century where the contracts are way outdated and uneeded. Thats why the Japanese have faired well in US factories with much less overhead do to NO Unions. So the question is...who is really doing the damage...GM...or the Unions?
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My stand has always been that unions are bringing our economy down. Highly over paid and underworked. I've been in all sorts of manufacturing facilities throughout southern Ontario and as soon as you walk in the door you can tell if it's unionized or not.
Employees are not rewarded for achievement, they are rewarded for how long they've been f***ing the dog. "No need for me to work my ass off and be productive, Jimmy does nothing and gets paid the same as me."
In a non-union shop, when your job is done, you find something to do. Whether it be sweep the floor or help someone else, not take a nap in the lunch room! The "not my job" mentality is getting companies no where.
No need for them.
Steve
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I'd say both. GM (as well as Ford and Chrysler) found it very easy to give the workers more rather than contend with a strike. That was fairly easy when the sales increased every year and productivity went up along with it. Times have changed. No company today can afford the contracts of three decades ago. The phone companies have changed, IBM has changed banks and insurance companies have changed.
In the 1960's many mechanics had no idea what a metric wrench was and did and could not work on imported cars. Even the mass produced Volkswagen was a niche market car in the early years. I'm all for good pay but if the auto makers want to compete, the unions and companies have to get serious and help save each other.
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seems
That is a part of the problem, and probably the most acute part.
But is certainly isn't the only part.
Management let the unions get them by the cojones. Management is responsible for the crappy reputation GM and others have for producing a less than top quality product, and then not backing it up.
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That may be your opinion but obviously not the opinon of the millions of peole that bought GM vehicles in 2005 and are continuing to keep GM numbe one in 2006. ;)
mike hunt

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Yes they are NUMBER1!....but for how long....thats the question.

for
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Certainly the unions have done a lot of damage historically. Right now, though, I think GM management is killing itself. The unions could probably build a car for a reasonable price at reasonable quality, but nobody will pay for them what they cost. In other words, Toyotas built here in the US can make money, while GM cars can't. The problem is lack of pricing power. You know what? That's caused by the product itself.
Why is that? This may not be the #1 reason, but it's interesting: There are a lot of people who wouldn't even look at a U.S. made car at all. They've sworn an oath against the U.S. auto makers. If the unions disbanded tomorrow, this would not change at all. It would make no difference. Is this built-up effects of the union, or GM management? Both probably. The reason people will tell you they woudln't consider a US car at all are mainly: 1. Crappy products (they must be guilty of this) 2. Previous bad service experience (they're even more guilty of this)
So I think GM management and the union were both involved in producing crappy cars for many decades. Plus, what everybody forgets, the built-up sins of the dealer network. Those were some bad sins. Bad people experiences were caused by the GM dealer network. A lot of people don't distinguish between local thugs and the multinational corporation. They get in USENET and post stuff like "I can't believe GM did this to me" and blah blah blah.
Toyota dealers may be just as crooked, but they haven't had as much time to make enemies here in the U.S.
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Joe wrote:

Actually many surveys show that Toyota and Honda dealers deliver less satisfaction than domestic dealers. Part of that may be the "buy it at our price or the next customer in the door will". A victim of their own success.
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You may be correct, but I havent seen any such surveys. It isnt all about price, anyway.
Lots of people, with me among them, tend to distrust and dislike dealerships. At this point, I have only owned American cars (while living in the USA), and large town dealerships as a group have earned a reputation of incompetence and expense, if not downright dishonesty.
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Dave wrote:

That happened to my wife and I at a local Honda dealer. We were looking at a one year old CR-V, but their asking price was $250 more than a brand new one. Their justification was that since you didn't need to pay for the PDI it was a deal. They were unwilling to negotiate price, figuring either some other stooge would take it, or they would ship it down to the US and sell it for even more after currency exchange (the Canadian dollar was much lower at the time). We left and will never go back to that dealership.
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If I pay your PDI, can I use your car for say, 15,000 miles?
It was not too many years ago many dealers were adding much wanted accessories like rust proofing, finish coatings and other dealer crap that would drive the price up $500 over sticker. Another was some advertising charges. I walked out of a few dealers. Seems that was a big thing in the mid 80's or so, especially on imports.
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Of course they don't have to fight off customers problems as much, with their higher reliability.
Also Toyota may have been more selective of dealership ownership.
A lady I know recently bought a car at a dealership owned by her corporation. That dealership has a reputation of talking down to and intimidating customers, to such an extent that I've left the dealerships 3 times over the years when looking at new cars. So I asked her if the after sale service at this dealership is OK. She said NO, and her discount wouldn't get her to buy there again.
With horror I recently saw that this terrible to customers corporation is now building a large Toyota dealership nearby. That's one Toyota dealership I'll avoid. >:)
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NO, and her discount wouldn't get her to buy there again.

Well, bubba, it isn't just Toyota that has some shitteaux dealers.
I am leery of ALL dealerships, of every manufacturer.
Yokem Toyota in the Shreveport has a sterling reputation. I am sure there are bad, and good, in your area.
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