Stmarie’s Weblog

2012 Election Information

Barack Obama and Failed Union Policies. Why not “Employee Stock Ownership Plans” (ESOP) Instead of Unions? January 31, 2009

OK let’s discuss this.  First of all I am a former union teamster and union auto mechanic.

I never benefitted by being in either union. In fact my paycheck was smaller because I had to have union benefits with held from my paycheck against my will. I never received any benefits back. All lost money.

So Barack has some very valid points however they are very, very outdated. Unions have out lived their usefulness. At one time, there was no one watching out for the employee and unions did a lot to correct long hours, unsafe working conditions, very low wages and a host of other problems that were rampant in the labor market.

He mentions 40 hour work week and overtime.  Yes, in the early 1900’s this was a problem. But today it is state law in all states. No union needed.

He mentions safe working conditions.  Yes in the early 1900’s this was a problem.  Now we have  OSHA (http://www.osha.gov/index.html) and we no longer need to have unions for that reason.

He mentions health benefits. Ever since I started working I always viewed health benefits provided by the company as a perk for working for that company. I viewed it as a privilege not a right. After all, this is a big cost to the company.  Even with the companies that I had to pay up to half of the premium I was very happy to have that as I knew how much is would cost to pay for it myself outside of a company policy.  The unions believe that the company should pay for 100% of all healthcare costs.  That is so wrong. When companies can afford it they will help with paying a portion of health care for their employees.

So we have to look at previous years and what Unions have done to various industries like the steel industry. Due to a relentless, crippling union labor strikes, the steel industry has shrunk dramatically as manufacturers can buy higher quality steel at a much lower price from other countries.  It costs less to buy and ship the steel from overseas than it does buy manufacturing here in a union steel plant.

We are now seeing what unions have done to the three big American automakers. The union over head has made the American cars non competitive with foreign automakers. This overhead includes Health for retirees and big pensions that are paid to retirees for life.  Paying for retirees is a huge cost added to american cars. Pensions have been replaced by 401Ks.  When you are done  working at a company, the company owes the worker nothing. He/she is not a beneficial asset to the profitability of the company. The retiree is no longer generating any revenue for the company. I know this sounds cold and harsh but that is the way it has to be. It is the employees responsibility to save for his/her retirement, not the union’s or the companies responsibility. Foreign companies are a lot more profitable building cars here in either non-union assembly plants or much modified union contracts.

An Article in the Wall Street journal by Logan Robinson who is a professor of law at the University of Detroit Mercy. He is former general counsel of Delphi, ITT Automotive and Metaldyne, and former head international and commercial lawyer for Chrysler.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123060246925441479.html

So here is the hypocrisy of Barack Obama. Barack tells people that he wants GM, Ford and Chrysler to go back to being successful, profitable and rehiring people. In the mean time he want to empower the bullying United Auto Workers that brought the big three to the brink of extinction. Does this make sense to you?

Barack Obama wants to take away the rights of the owners of ANY company to run a company non-union.

OK let’s look at the effect of that.  Most importantly  it will dramatically drive wages up through union contract negotiations. Keep in mind this is the number one reason for outsourcing manufacturing jobs to other places all over the world.

The next effect that this would have is rampant inflation. When goods are made under union contracts it dramatically raises the purchase price of either labor or the finished product.  When unions were in their strongest days during the 70’s in the Billy Carter administration, the United States was being crushed by 13.5% inflation.

Also keep in mind that all three GM, Ford and Chrysler built the very worst quality automobiles ever to roll off of any assembly line in the world during the 70’s and early 80’s.  It was during that period that the Asian auto manufactures started introducing much better built cars at a much lower price as those cars were built in non-Union shops over seas.

A short comment about that as I was a GM trained mechanic from 1968 through 1973 when I had to quit as the poor quality of the Chevys and Olds that I was working on was just disgusting. As I took a trip through the now closed Janesville plant  in Wisconsin. I could see that the workers were there just for the money.  I didn’t see a lot of PRIDE going into the cars. That is where the Asian, especially the Japanese, had it all over the US manufacturers.  For the Asian worker they took a lot of personal pride in what they were building.  How do I know that?  Very simple. When I would look around in the American Cars that I was working on. I’d see a round dot saying “inspected by #45.”

When I bought my first new Toyota Supra that was made in Japan. I noticed Inspected by stickers also.  But guess what?  The people that manufactured my car were so proud of their work, there was no #45.  There was a person’s name…. yes the person who built the car and inspected it along the way put their name on it. They knew that they had built the finest automobile that they could and would put their name on it.  I guarantee that would never happen in a UAW plant.  OK, enough about work ethic.

The next thing Unions do is take away the ability of the worker to negotiate their own wages.  Basically the Unions turn employees in to mass non desrcript numbers. All people get paid the same no mater what their productivity level is.  The only way a person can make more money for better, more competent work is through a new Union contract. Here is the problem with that:

One of the things that is making our education system in K-12 a disaster are the unions.  First of all. I will  be the very very first one to say and admit that that most important people in out education system are very, very underpaid.  I mean that. Teachers should get payed a lot more than they do…. but there is a clause here. It must be based on performance in the grades of the children that they are teaching just like any other job.  The teacher unions prevent that.

Here is an example: Four teachers in two schools in the same district.  John and Mary in one school and Bill and Ann in another school.

John and Mary’s students are all getting A’s, B’s and C’s and Bill and Ann’s Students are getting C’s D’s and F’s.  Yet because they are all in the same contract they all get paid the same.  Tell me what incentive does Bill and Ann have to do any better because they will get paid the same as John and Mary anyway.

If the teachers that were turning out better educated students got paid more then the underperforming teachers would either have to get better and get a raise or they will be terminated.  Union contracts prevent that from ever happening. So out education system with Union teachers will continue to be a disaster. There are many examples of this.

Here is another example of the industry that I am involved with now and that is the entertainment industry.  California has a huge problem with “Runaway Production” Why? Well it is very simple.  A producer and shoot a theatrical movie off shore or even in another state that is a “Right to work State.”  Shooting in a non-union environment can get a producer very hight quality people without the huge over head of Unions like IATSE and IBEW.

OK so what do I think is the answer if not unions: It is so easy my friend.  Employee owned companies that are called ESOPs. That stands for “Employee Stock Ownership Plan.”

Here is a PDF file that was written by Judy Waggoner explaining what an ESOP is.

https://www.principal.com/allweb/docs/ris/marketing_materials/pq/pq_5361.pdf

Here is an article by Mark Miller at Kent State University pertaining to Airline ESOPs.

http://dept.kent.edu/oeoc/PublicationsResearch/Winter1999-2000/EmployeeOwnershipInTheAirlines.htm

Here is an example of a plastic manufacturing plant in Elgin, Il that is an ESOP.

http://www.hansenplastics.com/site/epage/15544_441.htm

I can guarantee you that Hansen Plastics has no use or desire to have a union on it premises as they know that the company will not be profitable with a union.

When a company is employee owned every one of the employees from the CEO on down has a stake in the well being of the company. There is no reason why the Unions can not be booted out of the big three American Auto Manufacturers and the companies become employee owned (ESOP). I think you would see much more efficient companies and better automobiles because the employees would all benefit by the operational efficiency of the company. Employees often complain about not sharing in the profit that the companies are making and that is why they need unions. Well if the companies were employee owned they would all get a “Profit Sharing Check” at the end of the year or quarterly.  Not practical to dole out profit checks every pay period. So if the company is run right then everyone makes money. If the company has any screw ups for employees then the other employees will want to get rid of them so that the company is efficient and profitable.

OK again Barack Obama just does not get it. His “Change” is what we had in the Carter administration. There is absolutely nothing new that Barack Obama is doing.  NOTHING.

ST

Advertisements
 

Barack Obama, Propaganda, Jimmy Carter, Inflation, High Interest Rates “Reinvestment Act” and The “Misery Index.” January 30, 2009

As I listen to the rhetoric that is coming from Barack Obama’s tone of voice I have to ask myself if the rapid collapse of our economy is being caused by Barack Obama telling us day after day that the economy is in very bad shape? Thus unnecessarily eroding the confidence of the American people. Thus making people believe that this huge spending package is the only way to save the The United States Of America? Is this rhetoric manipulative propaganda?

Let’s go back to an article that I had wrote previously.

https://stmarie.wordpress.com/2008/10/03/barack-obama-and-the-communist-party-endorsement/

I had wrote of the possible influences that Frank Marshall Davis may have had on  Barack Obama.

One of the tactics that has propelled the the Communist Party into successful power is PROPAGANDA. Propaganda is the perfect tool to sway people into thinking the same way the leader does.

My point is that it seems that Barack Obama is telling us that the economy is very, very bad and will get worse.  He tells us everyday.  We as the public already know this. It seems that he is over zealously telling this every day so the public will back him on this massive spending plan that will shift the wealth from the private sector to the government by making us dependent on the government for jobs, bailouts and miniscule tax rebates.  Seeing as how the government does not have this money to give to us, the only solution is to print the money.  Printing money that we do not have gold backing for in the federal reserve is called INFLATION.

Previous Barack Obama Propaganda:

https://stmarie.wordpress.com/2008/10/29/barack-obamas-controversial-television-propaganda-102908-2/

So is Barack Obama’s Propaganda having an influence on the public that is listening? Does Barack Obama’s Propaganda have a great influence in certain sectors of our society

Ok, so what does this mean? Well in a very, very short time it will take more dollars to pay for things. When inflation gets out of control then the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates. Money will cost a lot of money to get. In the end, Barack Obama will create a lot of jobs but when all is said and done, people will still not be able to afford anything, because of high inflation, high interest rates and the inevitable much, much higher tax rates to deplete the over bearing deficit.

If you look back in history to the Jimmy Carter Administration you will find that during Jimmy Carter’s Reinvestment Act, much the same as Barack Obama’s, we went into years of double digit inflation because the dollar was so devalued (The fed printed a hell of a lot of money to fund the Reinvestment Act).  To combat high, runaway inflation the Federal Reserve kept raising interest rates. Now, much to Jimmy Carter’s credit there were 10.5 Million Jobs created under his presidency. However people could not afford to buy anything because the price of merchandise and interest were well beyond the average person.  The end result was the economy did not grow thus we had “STAGFLATION.”

Here is an interesting page from the Wall Street Journal:

http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2009/01/09/bush-on-jobs-the-worst-track-record-on-record/

Note that during the George W. Bush years there was the lowest unemployment and the the lowest interest rates.  One may argue that George W. Bush only created 3 Million jobs.  But wait…. almost everyone was working. But as the economy began to collapse because of Bill Clinton’s expansion of the Community Reinvestment Act in 1997, the unemployment number skyrocketed in the last months of George W. Bush’s term.  This was not George W. Bush’s fault at all.

Carter: Interest rate, 21%. Inflation, 13.5%. Unemployment, 7%. The so-called “Misery Index,” which Carter used to great effect in his 1976 campaign to win election.

Reagan’s last year: Interest rate, 9%. Inflation, 4.1%. Unemployment, 5.5%.

George W. Bush: Interest rate, 8% down to almost 0%. Inflation, 2.6%. Unemployment, 4.5%.

“The misery index was initiated by economist Arthur Okun, an adviser to President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960’s. It is simply the unemployment rate added to the inflation rate. It is assumed that both a higher rate of unemployment and a worsening of inflation both create economic and social costs for a country. A combination of rising inflation and more people of out of work implies a deterioration in economic performance and a rise in the misery index.”

The Misery Index

So what is my point? I think you can see the parallels between Barack Obama’s campaign and Jimmy Carters campaign and what lies ahead for us. Barack Obama is doing nothing new. It is an almost textbook repeat of the Jimmy Carter administration.  Even the rhetoric is the same. “Reinvestment Act” is the key phrase. Barack Obama also has used the “Misery Index” as an excuse to get elected.

This is how it works folks.  When interest rates climb people invest in high yield bonds, CDs and other interest generating investment vehicles. The public does not invest in stocks that are much riskier. That means that even Mutual Funds shift their assets into to CDs, Money market and bonds.  This makes it very difficult for companies to raise money for capital investments, company expansion, job growth etc. with the sales of company stock etc. What you end up with is STAGFLATION.

If you were to read this article written by John T. Woolley and Gerhard Peters at The University of California Santa Barbara.  You will see the striking resemblance of Barack Obama’s “Change” and what Jimmy Carter did when he was in office from 1977-1981.

http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=31055

Is is true that history repeats itself?

ST

 

A Letter to Bill O’Reilly January 29, 2009

Hi Bill.

I have a question. I am really convinced that this whole financial meltdown was instigated by Bill Clinton’s mandate for more loans to be written by banks.

Think of Bill Clinton knocking over the first domino in the financial meltdown domino line.

Item 2C on this page.

http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10024.pdf

My biggest frustration is that with this mandate, it opened the door for greedy bankers and investors to do all the damage that they have done. When Billy Carter wrote the CRA of 1977 it corrected a problem called “Redlining” that banks were doing by not writing loans in the inner cities of our country. Fast forward to 1997 when Clinton created the expansion of the CRA of 1997. Basically Bill Clinton created a land of entitlement for people that could never afford a home under normal lending practices. Enter Bear Sterns and other lending organizations that invented “Creative Lending Practices” Aka “Sub Prime Loans” in order to meet the requirements of Bill Clinton’s Lending practice rating system.

So My question is why doesn’t anyone address this issue?  Why has it been brushed under the carpet for years?  I really wish you could take a few minutes and read my blog.

https://stmarie.wordpress.com/

Love your show. Keep it up.

ST

 

A Poll Regarding Bill Clinton, His Administration and Criminal Injustice In The Failed US Economy That is Ruining the United States of America Today. January 21, 2009

In case you missed the polls, I put them in from the previous post. Here they are again:

Thanks for taking the time to answer these polls.

ST

 

William J. “Bubba” Clinton and the Economic Democratic Disaster of 2007 through 2012 January 18, 2009

Hello again,

I has been a while since I have posted any thoughts as I wanted to let time take it’s toll. In the past few months our country has deteriorated to almost the same level as the Great Economic Crash of 1929.  The collapse of our economy is a well orchestrated plan by the Democratic Party to completely destroy any other party representing the American people in modern day politics, Thus making the United States a one party Socialist country.  I also want to make it perfectly clear that if this was happening with the Republican Party the events would be just as detrimental to the well being and the freedoms and privileges that we as Americans have enjoyed up until now. This is a multiple party Democracy. I hope it remains that way to keep checks and balances in order.

The American people have voted and they have chosen a person to be president of the United States based mostly on the color of his skin.  The American people have thrown aside any questions about qualifications or ulterior motives of the person they have put into office.  The country is so caught up in Obama merchandising of commemorative pins, coins, songs, banners, comic books, bobbles, SWAG, buttons, banners and other items that are so insignificant to the problems that lay ahead of us in the near and long term future.

My own story is in the past three days I have found out that I have to come up with $25,000.00 in order to save my house.  I am able to do it but it comes at a huge price and that is not spending any money to help grow the economy.  This is exactly what I have not wanted to do all my life. I always felt that it was my patriotic duty is to spend money and keep the economy going. I can no longer do that.

Finally the damage that Bill Clinton inflicted on the United States of American by expanding the CRA of 1977 http://files.ots.treas.gov/65203.pdf finally has had a personal effect on me.

In a nut shell, Just as Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Barney Franks are creating a country of “entitlement without responsibility” today, so did the creators of the expansion of the CRA in 1995 and put into law by Bill Clinton in 1997.

I have been on leave for awhile just sitting back and watching the new administration being formed for Barack Obama”s “New Way to do business in Washington.”

I have been watching him put a great number of former Clintonistas back into power including Hillary herself. Now Appointing Hillary is a pretty crafty way for Barack to achieve job security.  The best way for Barack Obama to keep Hillary from running against him in 2012 was to put her in his cabinet. Hillary is not qualified at all to be Secretary of of State. but Hillary’s appointment is a monkey off of Barack Obama’s back. By re-appointing a lot of the same people that contributed to the melt down of the economy during the Clinton era back into power  just shows how unqualified Barack Obama really is.  If Barack was really going to bring a “New Way of Doing Business In Washington” he would have never brought back anyone that only knows how to run Washington the “OLD WAY.”

Barack Obama has one huge problem on his hands…. no not the economy.. Nancy Pelosi.  Out of the “DUMB BOX OF HAMMERS” ( Harry Reid, Barney Franks, Nancy Pelosi et al.) Nancy Pelosi seems to be the dumbest and the most incendiary dumb hammer in the box.

Here is why I say that.  Barack Obama says he wants to “Reach across the aisle” to the Republican Party to work with them. In the meantime Nancy Pelosi is starting her own private Nuclear War with the Republicans. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/01/18/pelosi-open-prosecution-bush-administration-officials/

Now Nancy Pelosi is butting heads with Barack Obama… or will Barack Obama turn against the Republicans like a rabid junk yard dog and then absolutely nothing will get done for the next 4 years.

I find it so odd that Nancy Pelosi would attempt to bring criminal charges against the Republican party and not her own Democratic Party Members that were in office in 1997 when the mandates to systematically destroy the economy were put into place.

On this page you will find what exactly Bill Clinton Mandated. He put for that institutions shall be examined and rated.  “and institute more effective sanctions against institutions with consistently poor performance.” This means that if loan organizations did not write enough loans to low income and unqualified people, the institutions would be penalized.

http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10024.pdf

POINTS ASSIGNED FOR PERFORMANCE UNDER LENDING, INVESTMENT AND SERVICE TESTS  http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10025.pdf

Lending Service Investment

Outstanding …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 12 6 6

High Satisfactory ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9 4 4

Low Satisfactory ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 6 3 3

Needs to Improve ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 3 1 1

Substantial Noncompliance ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 0 0 0

http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10024.pdf

“Community and consumer groups also have criticized the agencies for failing aggressively to penalize banks and thrifts for poor performance.

Noting that the CRA examination process could be improved, President Clinton requested in July 1993 that the Federal financial supervisory agencies reform the CRA regulatory system. The President asked the agencies to consult with the banking and thrift industries, Congressional leaders, and leaders of community-based organizations across the country to develop new CRA regulations and examination procedures that ‘‘replace paperwork and uncertainty with greater performance, clarity, and objectivity.’’ Specifically, the President asked the agencies to refocus the CRA examination system on more objective, performance-based assessment standards that minimize compliance burden while stimulating improved performance. He also asked the agencies to develop a well-trained corps of examiners who would specialize in CRA examinations. The President requested that the agencies promote consistency and evenhandedness, improve CRA performance evaluations, and institute more effective sanctions against institutions with consistently poor performance.”

http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10026.pdf

http://bulk.resource.org/gpo.gov/register/2005/2005_10027.pdf

OK so now you are asking why I will not let this go. Here is the reason.  I believe that Bill Clinton instituted  the biggest crime against the economy by mandating the 1997 CRA reform act. He pitted the performance of the number of loans serviced in this country against the quality of the loans thus mandating that the institutions write a huge number of loans whether the loans had proper documentation or using creative, often corrupt loan instruments to people that could not qualify or ever pay back the monies owed on the mortgage, credit card or what ever type of credit program that the loan applicant had applied for.

I find it very offensive that the public view George W. Bush as the worst president ever.  Ok so he was not the best.  But he was not the cornerstone of our now failed economy.

To me, I would have thought that giving todays state of the economy that the following video (not from Fox News Network) would have been the death nail of the Democratic Party representitives that are in office now and at least for the next two years until elections in 2010. This shows the total disregard for the wishes of the American People as these legislators have put their own agenda ahead of what was really necessary for the good of the people of the United States of America.

The award of worst president ever would go to Bill Clinton’s and his adminstration (Barney Franks et al.) for setting up the mandates for greed that eventually took a toll on the stability and the currant collapse of the US Economy that we have today.  And when the Bush adminstration called to light the impending disaster in 1993 the Clinton Adminstration (Yes the same people that are in office now.) repeatedly argued that there was no problem with Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. I will never forget or forgive Bill Clinton and his adminstration for this disastrous decision. And what makes matters worse is that this fact was completely pushed under the carpet by everyone and the story has not been revealed to the public in any depth except by one or two stories on Fox New Network.

My point is that the people of this country have elected the political party of entitlement.  We are seeing this in the way that Barack Obama is spending money.  In addition instead of telling people that things will get better he is telling people things are going to get a lot worse.  We know that is true.  But why be so pessimistic and drive people to be so dependent on big government.

If this is any indicator of what we have in store for the future it will never get better again for a long time.  In one of my earlier blogs I mentioned Rod Blagojevich who is in Barack Obama’s posse of corrupt Chicago politics. What I see in the future is that Barack Obama may…I stress may get involved with “Pay to Play” for the huge government contracts for infrastructure improvement. Maybe that will be Barack Obama’s Achilles heel.  Time will tell.

OK on to my next topic.  Jobs.   Barack Obama says he is going to create 3 million new jobs.  My question is jobs for who?  If Barack Obama had said I’m going to create 3 millions jobs for American Citizens and not for illegal immigrants, I would be happy.  But Barack Obama is not making any provisions like that. So now Barack Obama has turned the green light back on for an explosion of Illegal Immigrants from all over the world especially from south of the border.

OK so we all know that the Unions of this country by and large helped put Barack Obama into power.  If Barack Obama empowers unions to get established in more occupations, thus increasing costs of business operation, we will see even more jobs go overseas.

Finally, I want to ask Barack Obama how he is going to pay for the trillions of dollars of entitlement bestowed on the citizens of the United States.  He is spending money that does not exist so it has to be printed.  Ok so now my dollar will be worth .. oh say .. $0.20. Wow just like any other third world nation. How about that?

Who is going to pay back the trillions of dollars you are spending Barack Obama?  The only real source there is are the Baby Boomers.  And they will be fading to black soon.  So who will pay that back and at what rate?  60% Income tax for what is left of the middle class and 80% for 1% of the wealthy that are left in the US?

Thank you Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Franks and Harry Reid for bringing us the next 8 years (Barack Obama will rig it so he gets elected to a second term) of economic and social hell.

STMARIE