Unionized workers at the Republic Windows and Doors factory in Chicago are occupying the factory after it closed with only 3 days’ notice. The workers are demanding severance and vacation pay.
Political leaders including Jesse Jackson and Democrat Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich appeared with the 250 employees to demand that Bank of America extend credit to Republic so that Republic could pay the severance and vacation packages. BofA is said to have cut off the company’s credit line when business went bad.
The case has received national attention as a study in worker’s rights. But here’s the question: How many people in our society have lost their jobs and simply accepted the outcome as part of the natural economic cycle rather than crying about it as the unions are doing in Chicago?
Why is the government preparing a bailout for the Big 3 auto companies with hardly a mention of any concessions by the unionized assembly-line employees who are making $70+ an hour, the wages that are pushing the car companies out of business in the first place?
Did the Republic workers have exorbitant wages and absurd union work rules? And did that have anything to do with the company losing its economic viability? What is the full story?
Even before his December 9 arrest on charges of pay-for-play, bribery and extortion, Democrat Blagojevich was well-known as the nation’s most corrupt governor; heavily-Democrat Chicago long has been considered the nation’s most corrupt city; while Illinois, called the most corrupt state in the union (three governors have been sent to prison over the last 40 years), also happens to have one of the worst economic climates in the US, another anti-business liberal fiefdom.
Ahh, Illinois… home of Barack Obama, Republic Windows and Doors, Reverend Wright, Tony Rezko, William Ayers, Rod Blagojevich, Jesse ‘Shakedown’ Jackson and all the rest. Isn’t it comforting knowing that our nation is in good hands?
What does all this Democrat corruption have to do with the Republic Windows and Doors case?
Everything. Because it represents government and union intervention into the private sector when everyone knows that government is always incompetent while unions are corrupt and greedy. Blagojevich is a totally pro-union stooge.
Under law, Republic was supposed to give workers 60 days notice of the plant closing. Republic’s monthly sales had fallen to $2.9 million a month from $4 million. Republic CEO Rich Gillman said that the company had no choice but to close.
Yet what company is going to tell people that it is going out of business in 60 days? That would be like a person announcing he is going to die in 60 days. This makes no sense at all. Most businesses hang on until the last minute hoping to turn things around and throwing in the towel only when options run out.
Bank of America recently received $25 billion in government bailout money. So Republic workers are protesting that the bank should be paying their severance and vacation packages if it got money from the government. BofA has responded that as a bank it is not responsible for the financial obligations of an employer to its employees, although it decided after several days of the protest to extend some credit.
But BofA is just a bank. Banks lend money; they are not institutions of social engineering as Democrats have made them out to be. So what kind of precedent does this set? Are banks going to be intimidated into financing bankrupt companies for fear of media harassment, as they were forced by laws like the Community Reinvestment Act to lend money to people with no credit history and no downpayment?
Just look at what that produced. Chaos.
Obama has joined the Republic fray. “The workers who are asking for the benefits and payments that they have earned, I think they’re absolutely right and understand that what’s happening to them is reflective of what’s happening across this economy,” he said.
Obama has been associated with Blagojevich for years. So what does this say about Obama?
The next question is: How is private enterprise supposed to deal with unions that demand inflated wage and benefit packages and impose bizarre work rules; states and localities that tax business heavily; regulators who slap every type of law on business; and corruption by Democrats? Was Republic Windows and Doors ever extorted by corrupt officials like Blagojevich or someone lower down on the political chain? Where is the media investigation into that?
In 1980, president Jimmy Carter signed a bailout for Chrysler which required Chrysler to restructure itself. In that action, unions gave back $462 million in wages and non-union workers gave back $125 million. Lee Iacocca put Chrysler back into profitability by 1983, earning a $350 million profit that year. Workers gave back a total of $2.5 billion and the number of Chrysler employees was reduced by 40%.
Imagine that. 40%!
Obviously Chrysler was overstaffed and union workers were overpaid. Sound familiar? Like the Big 3 today? Was Republic Windows and Doors overstaffed? Did excessive union wages and crazy work rules have anything to do with the company’s unsustainability in these hard times?
In all the congressional hearings about the car company bailouts, hardly a word has been mentioned about union leaders being forced out or union workers accepting pay cuts. Because the Democrat party wants to continue to funnel money to the unions – and the Democrat party – at the expense of the taxpayer.
And as far as the media have let on, the closing of Republic Windows and Doors was simply a group of evil capitalists heartlessly throwing people out of work. How about hearing management’s side of the story? After all, managers are out work too. And the company owner has gone bust. Why not hear their views?
No, their side will not be reported because if the public hears the management side, they might understand the situation rather than seeing it through the media’s anti-capitalist filter.
By the way, where are the media stories about 43,000 newspaper jobs lost across the country in the last few years? Or 500 people recently thrown out of work at NBC in New York?
No, the media do not want to report on media failures. They only want to point the finger at others.
And where were the media to report on Blagojevich for his 5 corrupt years in office? The same media that love Obama unconditionally.
Keep an eye on this case. After all, Illinois is Obama Country. There may be much more to this story than meets the eye. These corrupt officials may start singing to save their own skins. And who knows where that might lead.
Please visit my website at www.nikitas3.com for more common sense.