The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

GM Spins the Numbers

May 16, 2011

GM says they will soon “create or retain” 4000 jobs. We are supposed to be impressed.

If GM “retains” 3999 jobs and creates only one, they have not exactly lied, but they have made a silk purse from a sow’s ear.

Where are these 4000 jobs? Spread in tiny numbers all over the map. Sixty in Flint; 50 in Saginaw; 18 in Bay City; 25 in Warren; 110 in Arlington; 80 in Spring Hill. Plus one possible, maybe, new shift building electric Volts in Hamtramck, MI.

That’s the kind of “job creation” we are supposed to be pleased with?

In only the last five years, GM has eliminated at least 40,000 jobs.

In 2009, they were given a government bailout that they put directly into profits and executive pay – and let the jobs stay gone. Now they want to restore only one out of ten jobs – and we are supposed to rejoice?

Yes, it’s very possible they will “retain” 4000 jobs – except not with the same workers in those jobs. GM wants high seniority workers gone, their decent wages and benefits eliminated. GM is putting on the pressure to force them out. In their places, GM wants to hire new two-tier workers at less than half the cost. Imagine the boost to GM’s profit margins!

No, this is no time to rejoice. The time to rejoice will come when workers refuse to be played like this.