Thursday, December 04, 2008

What's all the loco-motion about?

Lou Dobbs says it best “Doesn’t anyone deserve a government that works?”

I think Stephen Harper should listen to that statement loud and clear. After tuning from my favourite Canadian newscast CBC-The National with Peter Mansbridge, I tuned into CNN’s Anderson Cooper to listen to the latest news coming from our friendly American neighbours with a huge concern for our economy, especially our Canadian Auto Workers and to get an ear full of what Anderson and his panel were talking about regarding the current situation in their country.

UAW is promising concessions but resisting the greater pay cuts. The CEO’s testify today and explain to congress they need a $35 billion dollar bailout opposed to the $25 billion dollar one they originally thought they needed…hey what’s an extra $10 billion give or take except oops where has the $350 billion dollars gone that was given to the Feds…that my friends is the $700 billion dollar question.

According to Henry Paulson, Secretary Treasurer, they’re not sure, yes my friends the Treasury department didn’t track it or set safe guards in place so where oh where did the money all go…or where oh where could it be? Banks yes $150 billion of it; $200 billion went to the ‘other’. Corporate bonuses…maybe so.. but how do they find out, well the Treasury department is working on those safeguards as they figure out how to watch where the spending is going and since Henry Paulson gave Wall Street investments the benefit of the doubt it must be somewhere spinning around this unbelievable merry go round we like to call investment banking. It was described as kind of a ‘get out of jail free card’ but for whom?

So the good news first…sorry there really isn’t any, the Senate leaders don’t agree for a bailout plan for the big 3 automakers, feeling “their arrogance and PR bungling” is not sitting well with them, remind you of someone in Canada with an arrogance and PR bungling problem (so many I couldn’t name them all, let’s just say the PM’s PR smells of BO) and the consensus of the citizens in the U.S. on the bailout for the automakers is…drum roll please

36 YES-61% a big NO.

This doesn’t mean the deal is a dud, yet, but they are sceptical, the auto makers are asking for at least a bridge fund until President Elect Obama is in office January 20 or GM is pretty much bankrupt.

Henry Paulson, you know the guy who is like say Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, is asking for the second instalment of the bailout money but tells all it will be business as usual and remembering the Bush Administration who is, (remember what President Elect Obama said “only one President at a time”) under the Bush Administration, doesn’t like to regulation imposed on companies that received money through preferred stocks, even with no safe guards in place.

Now if Paulson gets his Christmas wish of the other $350 billion dollars (I’d be happy with $350.00 right now) that means the cookie jar will probably be empty faster then they can say President Obama.

So where does this leave our own CAW? Well let’s look at the original economic update Jim Flaherty AND Tony Clement seems to believe was a joint understanding with union leaders and let’s speak about coalition talks before hand. Doesn’t seem to me the workers are very happy with this agreement, that was signed in 2005 by Buzz Hargrove and Frank Stronach forming a union-corporate deal called the “Framework of Fairness Agreement”

“Union-corporate deal with Magna that ushers in a plan of union?corporate control of employees that violates almost every premise of traditional labour ideology and social unionism as expressed in a once proud CAW Constitution.”

Oh and that’s not all my friends of wondering why we need a coalition agreement against the party in power and now in question even more, let me highlight some more of this for you:

The CAW leadership has struck a blow against the entire Canadian working class, destroyed the universality of its constitution by creating “different members without the right to strike,” wiped out generations of sacrifice and struggle by giving away the right to strike. They are the first large industrial union to negotiate a union?corporate partnership to control workers, and become a direct agent of management by safeguarding efficiency, productivity and profit levels. The “No Concessions” programs of 2005 are not much more than crumpled paper in CAW President Buzz Hargrove’s wastebasket.

So when Flaherty and Clement speak of this deal of the public sectors right to strike which may have been taken away if the Opposition just stood down, look at what may have happened to many of our supposed union leaders that seemingly are taking care of those people who want a voice. Sound familiar. So those CAW you see standing and protesting they want Harper to stay in and no coalition, I wonder how many of them also turned their backs as did the CAW union leader on rights to workers. Read the full document on The CAW–Then and Now

No wonder Flaherty was so quick to recant his decision on public sector and taking away the right to strike, he was speaking of this agreement that there had been talks of and deals made on right to strike in a private sector union agreement, not public, and even the CAW workers weren’t happy with. Even without the Conservatives in power at the time, it really has to make you wonder which hand was feeding who. The Throne Speech advances far right agenda

Here’s an interesting one about Delegates walkout highlights struggle with CUPE for those wondering about our own Ontario Liberal Premier, Mr. Dalton McGuinty.

My support for Bob Rae as Leader of the Liberal Party has surely strengthened, even though at first I was relunctant because of voting for him during the Rae Day’s but that was then and this is now, he has admitted he made mistakes but he also learned from them. I’ll be watching this Liberal Leadership race as close as a Hawk on a mouse. Watch your backs boys and girls, there are a few Liberals that maybe shouldn’t be there, and if Stephane Dion must step down, my vote and voice for any leader will now be even more informed then ever before.

On a more pleasant note, things seem to be progressing well in the U.S. as the Republicans are actually happy with President Elect Obama’s choice of team and relieved that the “socialism” isn’t what their own Republicans rhetoric through the campaigning about Obama was they found out he can run a country in a bipartisan manner. At least one government seems to be working

…for now.

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