Letters: Views on UAW products, strike

The Detroit News
Ted Williams, 61, of Detroit, left, a 40-year GM employee, and Chuck Wise, 46, of Detroit, a 19-year employee,at the Hamtramck Assembly plant, walk the picket in front of the main entrance Monday morning.

Autoworkers stand for American taxpayers

I remember 2008 like it was yesterday. America was in a recession. People couldn’t find jobs anywhere. Sadly, many businesses didn’t make it through. 

But General Motors did. The company escaped bankruptcy and liquidation because the American taxpayer gave it a $13.4 billion loan to stay afloat — even though it had openly admitted to making terrible business decisions. 

When GM came asking for that loan just over a decade ago, it told a story of how the people and communities would be devastated by the loss of jobs. 

Fast forward 10 years and General Motors is more profitable than ever, raking in billions each quarter. 

And though it fulfilled its agreement with the government (who bought and sold GM stock to broker the deal), American taxpayers ended up losing about $10 billion in the transaction. 

I feel bad about that. I’m extremely grateful that our jobs were saved, and that I have a means to support my family. 

But I also feel that General Motors can do a better job of paying America back than closing five plants and moving production elsewhere. 

It can do better than dumping employee pensions on the federal government during bankruptcies that stay there even when the company returns to profitability. 

It can do better than working temporary employees crazy hours for $14 per hour ($29,000 per year) with very little benefits while paying its CEO nearly $22 million per year. 

General Motors can do better by the American taxpayer. 

So, when I’m called upon to stand on the picket line to help convince GM to reinvest in America, then that’s what I’ll do.

Brandy Booth, Bay City

Why should I buy a UAW product?

In the past, the UAW provided financial and other support during elections for the Democratic National Committee. Will the UAW will continue its past habits?

It appears that today’s DNC candidates are:

  • Anti-internal combustion engines
  • Anti-drilling for oil
  • Anti-fracking
  • Anti-pipelines
  • Anti-SUV

Pretty well anti-everything that is beneficial to the UAW and Detroit’s automobile manufacturers.

It appears that the average Democratic voter couldn’t care less about the UAW.

It is my opinion that if the country will be going the e-vehicle route, the majority of those products will come from Asia. This is not very good for the UAW.

The UAW’s support of the Democratic Party assures a decimation of its own membership.

Today, there are plenty of vehicles made by other brands that have a high North American content while remaining politically neutral.

I will purchase a new vehicle in the next six months. Why should it be a UAW product?

Gerd Hartung, Detroit