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    Tuesday, September 25, 2007

    Tuesday Talkback

    A little moan, a little talkback.

    “My moan is against all the people who say ‘Buy American cars.’ I would if they were built better, had a resale value like foreign cars and lasted as long. When the Big Three put out a product that is worth my money, I may buy one. If the unions would stop demanding such high pay scales the auto makers might have a chance. When was the last time you heard Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia, and the rest of them go on strike? It is your option to buy American, don’t tell me what to buy.” — No city

    The timing of this moan is very interesting. We've seen the moans before, back and forth, about buying American. Only this time, the bit about striking was added.

    My first thought was, I don't remember the last time any autoworkers went on strike. But later in the day yesterday, the UAW went on strike at GM plants. It is the first strike by autoworkers since 1976.

    The workers at GM have been working without a contract since September 14, so anyone in the know about that might have seen this coming. I wasn't aware. But with thirty-plus years since the last strike, it would seem that recent history has shown that labor and management had developed a history of getting things done without an actual strike.

    The tone of the moan places the blame on the workers. Interestingly, if the cars are poorly designed and poorly manufactured, somehow this is the fault of the autoworkers. And the companies themselves are excused for the product they are putting out because of the demands by the workers. The moaner suggests that if the workers made less money, this would somehow result in the improvement of the quality of American cars. And finally, the bit about the striking makes it sound as if strikes at American plants happen a lot more frequently than they actually do.

    So it has been over thirty years since the last strike -- yet this showed up in Monday Moaning yesterday, the day the strike began. Did this moaner know last week that the strike would start yesterday? Is this just a coincidence? Did someone slip this one in at the last minute? I'll be curious to see how the PD covers the strike, especially if it drags out for a few weeks.

    “Does anyone observe the speed limit anymore? I go about 2 to 5 miles above the speed limit and everyone passes me. My punishment is being tailgated. Get off my tail or pass me. I am not breaking the law and I am getting better gas mileage. Use your heads, people!” — Euclid

    "I go about 2 to 5 miles above the speed limit ... I am not breaking the law."

    Well, no, apparently you are. Such as the speed limits laws are, you are breaking them. Like most of us do from time to time, to varying degrees.

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