General Motors firing 14,000 workers

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The Ultimate
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General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 27 Nov 2018, 23:51

You don't have to spend long hours reading Marx's Capital or the Manifesto to recognize that there are two classes in direct antagonism with each other. Just one read through of a news report by the New York Times on General Motors' employee layoffs should be sufficient. Capitalist cynicism does not get any clearer. These are words from the same news report:

"General Motors announced Monday that it planned to idle five factories in North America and cut roughly 14,000 jobs in a bid to trim costs....Investors welcomed the news, sending G.M.’s shares up 4.8 percent to their highest closing price in about three months."

That's right, investors love it when thousands of workers get fired.

A shame that we haven't reached the point where the tables get turned and the right of the "investor class" to profit from the deprivation of working people is replaced by the right of the working people to deprive the investor class of its right to exist.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Rufus T. Firefly » 28 Nov 2018, 00:02

this is actually directed related to (josh's preferred insult here)'s tariffs on imported steel. production costs skyrocketed as a result beyond what could be offset by a higher price point for consumers.
I'm not saying it's right - just that it makes sense to scale back production. could we produce steel here instead? probably. It wouldn't be any cheaper though. see, trade wars are easy to win!

also, the investor class can fuck off and die. my company was at the whim of wall street for years and it fucking sucked. it was actually kind of a dogsend when we got bought out by amazon - it allowed the company to prosper without the investors constantly looking over our shoulder and micromanaging. not that amazon is some beacon of hope but it sure as shit beats being a publicly traded company on wallstreet (I know that amazon is - but they have pretty much told the street to fuck off while they do their thing - I meant more so that my company is better off being under their umbrella now)
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Nick » 28 Nov 2018, 00:23

The White Marsh plant here is one of the ones being closed :santa:
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 28 Nov 2018, 00:33

Rufus T. Firefly wrote:I'm not saying it's right - just that it makes sense to scale back production.


It makes more sense not to vote in fucktards like (josh's preferred insult here) to lead the country.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Hitoshura » 28 Nov 2018, 06:21

i'm sure the tariffs have some contribution to profit reduction but it is in no way the proximate cause. if you wanted to make a case for flagging sales, that's the one to go to for, if you feel inclined to give the company the benefit of the doubt.

none of that changes the reality that GM had $15B in cash to throw into stock buybacks over the last 3-4 years and are happy to take out a $5B credit facility on top of that to finance their corporate restructuring and labor bloodbath. a company interested in producing things or providing for its employees could put all of those resources -- mind-boggling billions in cash, tens of thousands of workers, all those manufacturing facilities -- to productive use. GM is not interested in any of those things. like every other publicly traded corporation, the company now exists as a vehicle for financial engineering, and never in spite of the human cost but rather precisely because of it.

the people that manage these companies are bloodthirsty ghouls and delight in the misery they inflict on the world at large. nothing will begin to change until we all start to internalize that fact
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Paste Human » 28 Nov 2018, 18:33

The Ultimate wrote:You don't have to spend long hours reading Marx's Capital or the Manifesto to recognize that there are two classes in direct antagonism with each other. Just one read through of a news report by the New York Times on General Motors' employee layoffs should be sufficient. Capitalist cynicism does not get any clearer. These are words from the same news report:

"General Motors announced Monday that it planned to idle five factories in North America and cut roughly 14,000 jobs in a bid to trim costs....Investors welcomed the news, sending G.M.’s shares up 4.8 percent to their highest closing price in about three months."

That's right, investors love it when thousands of workers get fired.

A shame that we haven't reached the point where the tables get turned and the right of the "investor class" to profit from the deprivation of working people is replaced by the right of the working people to deprive the investor class of its right to exist.


It's impressive that simply from reading a New York Times article you were able to determine that it was in the best interest of the enterprise as a whole that those five factories remain in operation, and that the stakeholders in that company were thrilled over the prospect of layoffs as opposed to the possible reduction of costly redundancies, inefficiencies, unused capital, etc. Also GM shares finished down 2.5%, which would suggest that big players in the market actually aren't impressed by a company screaming uncle by downsizing. But we'll see. I can't stand GM after those sleazy bailout deals and EV subsidies they' were given, but I do feel for the workers in a big way.

That said, this almost certainly wasn't the product of an out of control "investor class" acting out of malice. (btw how many blue collar pensions, mutual funds and 401K's do you suppose have GM in the portfolio?) To me it looks a lot like a routine business decision to remain competitive. If savvy investors don't like it then they'll dump the shares, and if it doesn't work then the company will tank and no one wins - assuming they don't get another bailout, which is a whole other sickening story that should have never occurred but couldn't have less to do with capitalism.

If earning a profit was as simple as arbitrarily closing factories and laying off workers for the hell of it then I'd probably just start a business of my own, do just that, and be rich beyond my wildest dreams. And if you're so certain that you know how to run an auto company then either a) put in to work for one at the executive level, or b) buy shares or shorts of the ones you know will succeed or fail. Or you could invest in the major supply chains that feed these auto companies, given that you already know what they ought to be doing.

I have no idea how to analyze most of this, but I can clearly see that this isn't some weird "us vs. them" social class issue. And unfortunately it looks like (josh's preferred insult here) is in the process of making this all even more ridiculous, basically by getting involved in any capacity (as if it''s within the president's sphere of influence to do so, which was also an odd thing Obama did).

GM is a tricky one though. I applaud the fact that they're trying to save the company as a whole by getting rid of unprofitable elements, but I also hate that they weren't allowed to have been broken up into pieces that could have been bought up by entrepreneurs who could have potentially produced a much better product at a better price.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 28 Nov 2018, 21:25

If you have no idea on how to analyze this then why are you writing a long post containing your analysis of the situation?
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 28 Nov 2018, 21:34

Secondly, I have worked in the business sector for the entirety of my career. My entire education has been in business, I have a Bachelors in Business, an MBA, and a second Masters in Business Analytics. So I know pretty darn well what it is that drives management decisions.

Maximizing share holder value takes high priority over employee job security. One is expendable (employees), the other is not (shareholder value). You have a choice: either ensure that one class keeps receiving dividends on the one hand, or safeguard the national/public/employee interest by keeping employed thousands of workers on the other. GM obviously chose the former, choosing the death of the American auto industry.

You really don't need a long analysis to see this fact for what it is. No other way to look at it other than two classes opposed to each other. The question is who do you side with, the few bloodsuckers, or the public?
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 28 Nov 2018, 21:41

If you think there are no other options besides what GM did, then you lack imagination, because you have been taught dogma that restricts your thinking to what your schoolmasters intended.

GM should be nationalized. China does this extremely well with their state-enterprise "national champions" which have driven the country's growth extremely well.

The USA could one day have the willpower to do this. But it will not as long as people like you oppose nationalization, people who own no capital but thump their chests the loudest for that very system that would crush you under its heel.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby The Ultimate » 28 Nov 2018, 21:48

You also forget that this fucking company took billions in tax payer money in 2008. Fuck the tax payer, fuck the public, fuck the employees, fuck the industry, what's important is to make sure that it continues to fill investor pockets.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Paste Human » 29 Nov 2018, 17:37

The Ultimate wrote:If you have no idea on how to analyze this then why are you writing a long post containing your analysis of the situation?


I'll repeat:

"I have no idea how to analyze most of this, but I can clearly see that this isn't some weird "us vs. them" social class issue." That was the point I made.

Just because I'm not delusional enough to believe I know what's best for one of the largest corporations in the world after earning some degrees and reading an article in the newspaper doesn't mean that I can't apply common sense to the situation in order to instantly recognize that this is not some sinister ploy to pull the rug out from under working class Americans.

I also didn't forget about the bailout. I specifically mentioned it in the post I made, identified that course of action as having nothing to do with capitalism, and expressed my hatred for everyone involved as a result of it. I also suggested that GM shouldn't have been sheltered from having been bought up by entrepreneurs who could have potentially done wonderful and imaginative things with all that infrastructure, which could have benefited the consumer in a big way. If nothing else tax payers wouldn't have been on the hook, because here we are years later and odds are that they'll just end up selling all that capital to someone else anyway.

What a waste. But that's government intervention for you.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Paste Human » 29 Nov 2018, 18:14

The Ultimate wrote:GM should be nationalized. China does this extremely well with their state-enterprise "national champions" which have driven the country's growth extremely well.

The USA could one day have the willpower to do this. But it will not as long as people like you oppose nationalization, people who own no capital but thump their chests the loudest for that very system that would crush you under its heel.


Haha, China. If you ever get a condo in one of their crumbling ghost cities let me know and maybe I can come visit you so we can discuss this in person. Please let me know in advance what your social credit score is so I can plan accordingly.

I personally value the transactions I make that are entirely private much more than those that are government run. They're almost always faster, more cordial, and less expensive. I've ridden Amtrak, I've used USPS, I've renewed my drivers license, I've dealt with the TSA...I would never get behind the wheel of anything designed by a government bureaucrat.

If you're a provocateur, then you're terrible at it. If you actually believe all this socialism bullshit, then you're an idiot. Move to a socialist country and get on with your life, or at least just buy a ranch in the middle of nowhere and attempt to run a socialist commune. I'm sure you'll have plenty of time to comb over what went wrong while spending the rest of your life in prison.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Lavabug » 29 Nov 2018, 22:13

Paste Human, with all due respect, unless you're getting paid massive shareholder dividends from GM, you are a bootlicker and show the same level of indoctrination that most of the American working class are victim to. You are providing a good demonstration of the inability most defenders of capitalism to question it as I mentioned to you in a thread some time ago, and have demonstrably little understanding on how it functions or what the role of government is in a capitalist country for that matter (or the functions of labor unions IIRC), by the things you say, and how rapidly you dismiss anything at odds with your daily experience and beliefs irrespective of the wealth of quality information provided and that we can continue to provide to you.

Genuinely learning something new is hard, and that involves a lot of reading and challenging, questioning and possibly throwing out preconceived notions and premises. It's a long and uncomfortable process. It's ok to admit you might possibly not know what your talking about (objectively you really don't here, no offense, Inram and stormy are for the most part not saying anything here that isn't fundamentally widely accepted by pro-capitalist economists and their media outlets). It doesn't make you stupid. It's a necessary first step to acknowledge the things you do know and the things you don't.

An honest critique of capitalism does not require you to endorse Stalin or move to Venezuela, as much as the collective chatter in the United States would have you believe. You might even come out on top with a stronger belief that capitalism is the most moral and best system ever for organizing society. But if you do, I hope you're at least independently wealthy and not just living a dream that one day you will be by playing by the rules of a game designed by the wealthy that is rigged for the sole benefit of the wealthy.
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby iamgoat » 29 Nov 2018, 22:38

:frown:
:grimb:
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Josh » 29 Nov 2018, 22:56

Lavabug wrote:Paste Human, with all due respect, unless you're getting paid massive shareholder dividends from GM, you are a bootlicker and show the same level of indoctrination that most of the American working class are victim to. You are providing a good demonstration of the inability most defenders of capitalism to question it as I mentioned to you in a thread some time ago, and have demonstrably little understanding on how it functions or what the role of government is in a capitalist country for that matter (or the functions of labor unions IIRC), by the things you say, and how rapidly you dismiss anything at odds with your daily experience and beliefs irrespective of the wealth of quality information provided and that we can continue to provide to you.

Genuinely learning something new is hard, and that involves a lot of reading and challenging, questioning and possibly throwing out preconceived notions and premises. It's a long and uncomfortable process. It's ok to admit you might possibly not know what your talking about (objectively you really don't here, no offense, Inram and stormy are for the most part not saying anything here that isn't fundamentally widely accepted by pro-capitalist economists and their media outlets). It doesn't make you stupid. It's a necessary first step to acknowledge the things you do know and the things you don't.

An honest critique of capitalism does not require you to endorse Stalin or move to Venezuela, as much as the collective chatter in the United States would have you believe. You might even come out on top with a stronger belief that capitalism is the most moral and best system ever for organizing society. But if you do, I hope you're at least independently wealthy and not just living a dream that one day you will be by playing by the rules of a game designed by the wealthy that is rigged for the sole benefit of the wealthy.


RIP Kevin. Here lies the pastey human
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby Hitoshura » 01 Dec 2018, 05:46

Lavabug wrote:(objectively you really don't here, no offense, Inram and stormy are for the most part not saying anything here that isn't fundamentally widely accepted by pro-capitalist economists and their media outlets)


that's a fair observation and at least for me, tacks pretty closely with my route to (by american standards) radicalization, which was basically spending the post-crisis years following the intersecting worlds of finance, law & politics. and so my perspective is probably heavily skewed towards pointing out the more notable dysfunctions of the moment, which as you correctly point out can fit comfortably within a capitalist reformism. but we tried the reform route in the 20th century and it lead us right back to another gilded age; 30 or so years to gut most of the reforms, and then a looting spree to follow which continues apace.

i don't usually make the broader argument that these are inherent features of the system & that accordingly, if one finds these outcomes to be unjust, that society must be restructured entirely, in large part because i'm a solipsistic dumbass and just assume that pointing out the flaws will lead everyone to also discover the self-evident truth that capitalism has got to go.

also because i'm awful at assembling these thoughts into coherent sentences, whatever brain i once had has mostly been melted by office job life
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Re: General Motors firing 14,000 workers

Postby User » 01 Dec 2018, 09:27

no way stormy you're still smashing it, keep it up
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