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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 25, 2005 / 23 Mar-Cheshvan, 5766

GM: Sabotaged from within

By Rich Lowry


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The announcement by General Motors that it is slashing 30,000 jobs and closing all or parts of 12 plants is the fruit of decades of "victories" by the United Auto Workers that even King Pyrrhus would consider shortsighted. The union has done so well at the bargaining table that it has priced its workers out of jobs.


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly manufacturing wage is roughly $16. Autoworkers for the Big Three, in contrast, earn more than $25 an hour. Who says the UAW doesn't get results? On top of the wages are cushy benefits that mean it costs automakers roughly $65 an hour to employ its workers. The expense of pensions for retired workers — and there are more than twice as many GM retirees as current workers — adds about $2,500 to the price of every car.


There is a high cost to unsustainably high wages and benefits — they tend to destroy the businesses in question. GM is perpetually shedding jobs. The only thing surprising about a new announcement from a CEO of a Big Three automaker would be if he said he had initiated a hiring binge.


If an enemy conspirator had infiltrated the U.S. auto industry with the mission of undermining it from within, he couldn't have come up with a worse system.


An example: Big Three autoworkers never quite go away. As part of a union-negotiated "jobs bank," roughly 10,000 of them are each paid $100,000 a year in salary and benefits for not working at all. When a plant closes, workers either have to be transferred to another plant (not more than 50 miles away) or given an expensive early retirement. Otherwise, they stay on the payroll.


It takes some doing to lose nearly $5 billion in a hot auto market, but GM's North American business did it this year. The Big Three can't even compete with automakers on our soil. CNBC's Larry Kudlow calls it the difference between Detroit North and Detroit South. Unencumbered by the legacy costs of the Big Three, free of the drag of unionization, highly flexible and efficient, Japanese and other, smaller foreign car companies are thriving in the South.


As The Wall Street Journal notes, they employ roughly 60,000 workers, make a quarter of all cars in the U.S. and pay good wages. Toyota's North American plants operate at more than 100 percent of their theoretical capacity, GM and Ford at only 86 percent. Efficiency means profit, and profit means expansion. As GM shutters plants, Toyota plans to open a new one in San Antonio next year to make Tundra pickup trucks.


It would be wrong to put all the blame for the Big Three's troubles on the UAW. Management is responsible for designing unappealing cars and selling them at a loss with "employee discounts." For all its woes, however, Detroit is improving under the pressure of competition, making major efficiency gains in recent years.


The GM announcement has met the usual laments for the death of U.S. manufacturing. By one key measure the sector is actually robust. Manufacturing productivity has been posting strong gains, as manufacturers make ever more products with fewer workers. But we are witnessing the end of a certain kind of manufacturing, the post-World War II model of heavily unionized, lumbering industry as welfare state. U.S. manufacturers need to be faster, leaner, smarter.


This is the future even in Michigan, even in the automotive industry. A new report by a Southeast Michigan group called Automation Alley notes that the more advanced slices of the auto industry are properly thought of as part of the technology sector. It notes that "the higher-wage, higher-skill jobs in the industry were less likely to be outsourced to lower-cost countries or reduced through internal cost-cutting." Instead of bludgeoning management, unions should be working to create a better-educated work force. That is the only path to labor victories that aren't Pyrrhic.

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© 2005 King Features Syndicate

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