So it looks like Republicans in the Senate just pulled the plug on the American auto industry. Unless Bush steps in and uses TARP funds to keep GM afloat the left owns the country for the next eight years, but at a terrible price. Billions in payments to suppliers are coming due in next few weeks, so not only will GM have to file for bankruptcy, so will many of their suppliers. Chrysler will go next. And, as soon as suppliers start going under, Ford will go down amplifying the effect. The transplants will have to layoff thousands as well, since they depend on the same suppliers. The domino effect begins now, and it's going to go fast. As I've mentioned before, just in time production where suppliers deliver precise amounts of product directly to assembly workers on the line (in place at all auto manufacturers) means there is no wiggle room for error. Just in time is a high risk, high reward strategy. One key supplier goes under and everything shuts down.
I am, however, extremely glad that the UAW didn't cave to Republican demands that they sell out the million+ retirees, which would have been the only way to bring wages in line at transplant and Big Three plants. It would have set precedent for all future concession discussions, selling out all manufacturing workers. So, two amazing shows of solidarity this week: UAW shows solidarity with all manufacturing workers by refusing to accept Republican demands for immediate concessions, and Republic Windows and Doors workers win their sit-down strike/plant occupation as Bank of America and JPMorgan agree to ensure they get their due severance. Together with this delicious morsel: anger at banks increasing, and Obama's vocal support for Republic workers, means a long eight years for the right.