The UAW strike at American Axle in Detroit is causing problems for more than just people in Michigan. At least 29 automotive related plants and countless other support business are feeling the heat.Many years ago when I entered the job market, I wondered how high the union wage could venture forward. Well it seems as though my earlier question is staring to get answers, NOT MUCH!
Many worker with 10~ 20 years of experience have the potential of making $75k ~$100k plus yearly with overtime. Once an individual worker becomes accustomed to earning this type of wage it would be extremely difficult to adjust to a down grade in pay of 20% or more without some serious ramification. It is just the American way, to spend beyond our means. It is the way corporations survive.
For example; You have been working for an automotive company and have currently worked your way up to $24.04 per hour, often overtime was offered, or even mandatory. Therefore during overtime you earn about 36.12 dollars an hour, unless it is on a Sunday or national holiday where it can be double time and a half for a UAW worker. This last number works out to be $72.12 and hour for at least eight hours of the worked day. It is not too hard to see how many workers could get very use to living above the means. The problem is that the US automotive industry cannot sustain this indefinitely, especially with competition from companies who do not have the long term overhead that GM, FORD, and Chrysler hold in the form of pensions, compensations and health care for its workers. This is the only game in town for UAW workers to make this kind of living, without having an university degree and some working experience under their belt.
These workers have to fight for these wages because if they go without a fight, it will be another fissure in the wage breakdown of America.
I hate to say it but I have seen this day coming a long time ago. I personally have friends and relative that have worked under the United Auto Workers Union. To me I see it like being drafted into the NBA. You get the big $ contract but in the long you can’t live at that level, Unless you have built some other income stream or business, once the team trades you or sells the stadium your out of luck.
Our UAW industrial model for workers is not even 70 years old, and already it is out of date.
I think that a corporate and country wide economic reset is in the works and American Axle is just company one in a line to take drastic measure. Remember Ford did it with a serious buy out. Other companies will not be so nice.
we all better get ready because the ride is just starting. Look at the housing market in many states, someone has hit the CTRL-ALT-DEL on the middle class.
I don’t know what to expect anymore …Just living the the fabulous life of Emmitt Muckles the best I can is enough work. Then, I often say prayers for everyone else.