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Old 07-22-2008, 10:37 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
41,478 posts, read 52,773,149 times
Reputation: 24677

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Even if the current managment bankrupts the comany the equipment and employees are valuable enough that a new managment could take over and make money with the existing contracts. Look what happened with Chrysler.
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Old 07-23-2008, 01:54 AM
 
Location: San Antonio Texas
11,431 posts, read 16,890,631 times
Reputation: 5224
Quote:
Originally Posted by John1960 View Post
After years of getting generous coverage, retirees from salaried jobs at General Motors Corp. reacted angrily Tuesday to the announcement that GM was ending their health benefits.

"I'm disappointed in the lifetime promise GM made to us," said John Fleming, 67, of Rochester Hills, a retired information system auditor.

Shell-shocked GM retirees react: 'This is a knife stab in the back' | Freep.com | Detroit Free Press (http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080716/BUSINESS01/807160357 - broken link)
The retirees are still getting $300/mo extra. Medicare already acts as their Primary coverage. Depending on where they live, they could probably purchase a Medicare supplement for $150/mo and then a Part D (rx) plan. I don't see how they are suffering so much when you compare them to the folks who are out of work or worked for companies that offered much less to retirees. it would really suck though if the executives continued to draw generous retiree health benefits with the exclusion of these ppl.
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Old 07-23-2008, 03:15 PM
 
414 posts, read 1,488,032 times
Reputation: 176
If all the people who say we should stop depending on the government to do everything for us were to give up their mortgage-interest deductions, we could probably fund universal health care in this country. Our businesses would be more competitive on a global level, insurance companies would cease sucking out huge chunks of money from our economy and middle class people could actually go to the doctor when they're sick.

Some entitlements are sacred cows and cost the government money. A lot of money.
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Old 07-23-2008, 06:19 PM
 
28,905 posts, read 47,920,486 times
Reputation: 46167
Well, plus these same GM employees lobbied incredibly hard and won some concessions that would make absolutely zero sense to any other business on the planet. Such as the "job training" site where redundant workers show up and read the newspaper or play eight hours of Scrabble a day. Simply unbelievable stuff like that that stems from a sense of entitlement. Yet when the company predictably gets into huge financial trouble, due in no small part to their largesse to workers, they suddenly get angry. Go figure.
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Old 07-24-2008, 08:09 AM
 
3,763 posts, read 10,977,608 times
Reputation: 6760
Seriously -how hard is it to separate SALARIED RETIREES from laid-off workers?

Or salaried retirees (no contract) from Union retirees (contract??)

Are you all just bitter that these people had better opportunities that now you have to lump them in?

My father worked for GM for 35 years as a CHEMIST. He went into a relatively highly paid profession, but he sacrificed some of his earning opportunites for the benefits that GM promised.

He did not ever STRIKE (union). He did not ever get job retraining - he loyally worked for them for 35 years at retired at age 67 (MANDATORY - at the time).

He is now 80 and suffering from ill health. My parents have some savings, and of course he currently gets his pension.. They will survive this change to their medical benefits - but it is still a shock to them.

My father was not GREEDY. He simply struck the best deal (he thought) that was available to him at the time for his career - and that meant sacrificing salary for benefits.

My parents are old enough that most of these changes going forward will not affect them, as probably (Hopefully!) they will pass away before GM ends its pension program 10 to 20 years from now.

But I wish people would stop saying "these employees were greedy or should have known better"

If you started working for a firm in 1950 and they promised you lifetime pension/health benefits instead of major salary raises (thanks to government tax breaks that made this a cheaper way for companies to compensate employees) - you would not question it. You would be grateful you landed such a job.

50 years later when they suddenly change their mind and you are in your 70's or 80's - (too late to go back to work, too sick to work at WalMart) - you have a right to be scared and even angry.

I am considerably younger, and work in a salaried environment. If my employer suddenly said to me "I know we promised you 10 vacation days a year - but we changed our mind!!" - I would be pissed and ask for a raise -- because I accepted my salary with the understanding that it came with certain benefits. If those benefits change while I am actively employed, I can ask for additional compensation - or I can LEAVE.

If you're already retired, you have much fewer options - you can't time travel back to your 40's and earn more money!!!

I agree that GM's offer is generous (the $300 subsidy) and that keeping the pension is the more important thing. But I am tired of people on these boards lumping salaried retirees who dedicated their lives to the company in with other groups of people who you seem to think are not worth being provided for in their old age.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:17 PM
 
48,509 posts, read 86,101,401 times
Reputation: 18105
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregW View Post
Even if the current managment bankrupts the comany the equipment and employees are valuable enough that a new managment could take over and make money with the existing contracts. Look what happened with Chrysler.
Chrylser had to be biled out and now they are in worse shape than ever. No one wants the automakers with their contracts. In the end the contracts will have to be modified as they have to a degree already or its bust ofr US auto makers. They don't have the cash to compete;they have been living in a SUV bubble for years.
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Old 06-01-2009, 03:17 AM
 
43 posts, read 193,789 times
Reputation: 44
OK..now that they have filed for Bankruptcy.........what happens to the retirees now. No Health benefits? No Pension? How does this work? I have many cousins in Michigan that did retire at age 48-50 and have led the good life since, but now? Most of them have two homes after retirement...home in Mich and home in Florida.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:35 AM
 
69,360 posts, read 57,081,589 times
Reputation: 9371
Quote:
Originally Posted by macymaid View Post
OK..now that they have filed for Bankruptcy.........what happens to the retirees now. No Health benefits? No Pension? How does this work? I have many cousins in Michigan that did retire at age 48-50 and have led the good life since, but now? Most of them have two homes after retirement...home in Mich and home in Florida.
Um, I think they might have to sell that second home, and if they can retire at 48-50, I'd have a very hard time feeling sorry for them..
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:13 AM
 
Location: LEAVING CD
22,951 posts, read 23,337,370 times
Reputation: 15543
I'm more concerned with the bondholders that are retired and depended on the income to eat and pay bills every month. Real great the UAW get's theirs handed to 'em and all the little guy retail bondholders get squat!
Hopefully a "real" BK judge will preside over this travisty.
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Old 06-01-2009, 09:31 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
7,090 posts, read 10,966,979 times
Reputation: 4110
It just sucks companies can get away with promising pensions, then some twerp gets hired and thinks they can use the pension money to make even bigger returns in the market...and fails. Then when the pension fund is insolvent they can shrug and say they screwed up, and the government swoops in to protect the retirees and relieve the company is back on its feet (not likely to happen when they already can't meet their obligations). Even though they pay fees, it's not enough IMHO for a "get out of pension because management are dolts" card.

"The deficit at the federal agency that guarantees pensions for 44 million Americans tripled in the last six months to a record high, reaching $33.5 billion, largely as a result of surging bankruptcies among companies whose pensions it expects it will soon need to take over.

Employers nationwide with so-called defined-benefit, or traditional, pension plans pay fees to the P.B.G.C. in return for a promise that it will take over their pension plan if a company fails. On Tuesday, for example, the agency announced that it had assumed the pension plan once run by the Lenox Group, a bankrupt maker of tableware, giftware and collectibles based in Eden Prairie, Minn. Assuming control of pensions for this company’s 4,300 workers will cost the agency an estimated $128 million — the difference between what Lenox had in its pension fund and what the total estimated obligations are."

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/21/bu...Pension&st=cse
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