Entry for April 02, 2006

The above illustration on the Delphi Bankrupcy is by Mike Konopacki, who lives in Madison Wisconsin and sydicates his cartoons with Gary Huck through Huck/Konopacki Labor Cartoons.

When I heard on Friday that autoparts maker Delphi was taking steps to terminate its union contracts and retiree benefits, I thought of two words:  Wilbur Ross.  Ross, the billionaire buyer of “distressed assets.”   Ross, you may remember, bought coal companies, such as Horizon and Anker,  once bankrupcy courts had relieved them of their union contract and pension obligations.  The latter operated the Sago mine, best known for the January disaster that killed.  The mine reopened March 15, despite no real answers about how to make it safer. 

Mark Reutter, who has written extensively on Ross and his methods, had this to say about the Delphi bankrupcy as early as October of last year:

Employees who have worked for decades for a company, who have been promised that they have benefits waiting for them, should have those benefits. They should not have those stripped out through Chapter 11, while bankers and financial vultures walk away—as in the case of Bethlehem Steel, with around $500 million in profits. In effect, through bankruptcy, the cash flow of the targetted company is going from the workers to the investment class.

Here are links from the Detroit News on the Delphi story.

ImageLetter sent by several U.S. Representatives to Delphi CEO Steve Miller Thursday urging him to bargain in good faith.
ImageUAW reaction to Delphi’s filing.
ImageDelphi actions could bankrupt GMCNN
ImageGM Pushed Closer to the EdgeMotley Fool
Image Delphi Asks to Void Labor Contracts, Alter GM Deals From Bloomberg.com
Image Delphi primed for GM court battle From BBC News
Image Delphi seeks to void labor contracts, cut jobs From Reuters

ImageUAW Local 1866 report to membership on Delphi proposals
ImageLetter from Henry Richard, chairman of the IUE-CWA Automotive Conference Board, to Kevin Butler, Delphi director of human resources
Image Delphi to dismantle contracts, UAW says
ImageDelphi offers $50K bonus for wage cuts
ImageFeds put heat on ex-Delphi executives
ImageWorkers mull whether to gamble on buyout
ImageMichigan, GM likely to be stronger after buyouts
ImagePraise, caution greet deal
ImageAbout the offers on the table
ImageBrian O’Connor: Should you take the deal?
ImageGM, Delphi,UAW reveal buyout agreement
ImageDelphi Medical sparks sales



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