At the Automaker/UAW Negotiating Table…

Originally published in the Grand Rapids Press, August 13, 2011

Guess I was feeling a little nostalgic because I was just at my class reunion for Flint Powers High School last weekend, which, by the way, was a blast. One big benefit from having gone to high school in the late 70s/early 80s — the fashions and styles back then were absolutely horrible (think thick polyester and feathered haircuts). So now, even having aged slightly, I think it’s fair to say that we all look much, much better.

Also by comparison, the relationship between American automakers and the UAW are much better now. Back then there was a distinct and contentious divide between management and union, white and blue collar, suits and shop rats. And the cars were crappy. Now after a few near-death experiences, the working relationship has improved tremendously …and so have the cars. It’s not nearly as entertaining, and the full medical/dental/vision/pension/vacation sure was nice while it lasted, but the cars are better….

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