Massive Layoffs At UPS A Big Win For The Union!

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Banks's Comment
member avatar
Union wages have exceeded non-union wages in blue-collar jobs for decades.

Yellow had the lowest paid employees in the LTL sector. The union even accepted a 15% paycut and lowering pension contributions.

Union workers have had better job security

The steel workers disagree. Former yellow employees disagree (that's about 7 companies in 1) . The old Levi manufacturing employees disagree. NEMF employees disagree. The union employees at UPS getting laid off and replaced by machines disagree. The list goes on.

The failure we should be talking about is the failure of worker's wages to keep up with executive pay and corporate profits.

UPS execs get paid a lot, but package handlers make 17-21 an hour. The CEO made 19M last year and that was after a pay cut. There's nothing unions can or will do about this because they do the same thing.

So, I guess what I'm wondering is, if you don't want unions, then what action do you propose workers should take?

Personal responsibility. McDonald's was never meant to be a career. People campaigning for 25/hr to flip burgers because they can't afford rent is stupid. I work with people that complain they can't make ends meet and then they walk outside and get in a pick up with a 900/month payment.

I can't imagine that you're ok with this. No one should be happy about this, except the upper one percent.

I don't really care, to be honest. I've never been one to sit around comparing my bank account to someone else's. I make responsible decisions and live within my means.

Imagine sitting around saying "I have to chuck boxes every night for 17/hr but Taylor Swift makes millions and millions to sing every now and then." Sounds stupid.

they no longer have anyone holding them accountable or demanding better pay and treatment for the workers?

They were never held accountable. It's nothing for the execs to refuse to negotiate while the workers wages stagnate and they continue to work. Or they'll figure out a way to shut that particular building down putting all of those people out of work. Estes did it with no problem.

They've put out anti-union propaganda, hoping the workers would fall for it and refuse to unite. When this happens, management has a free ride because they are united.

Those videos are stupid and nobody pays them any mind. The unions negative press was brought on by the damage they did. Like workers, they need to take responsibility for this. They suck at their jobs and that's why they're becoming obsolete. It's not because corporate showed new hires a 10 minute video saying unions are bad.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
package handlers make 17-21 an hour. The CEO made 19M last year and that was after a pay cut. There's nothing unions can or will do about this because they do the same thing.

But they just did something about it at UPS. The union got a big raise, they didn't lose any workers, and the company cut 12,000 non-union jobs, mostly management positions. It's a big win, regardless of how hard you try to refute that. The union did its job.

Banks, you continue to say "personal responsibility" is the answer to every question. We're not talking about how people spend their money, as I've stated previously to you when you brought this up. We're talking about workers getting a fair wage, good benefits, and reasonable job security. No amount of personal responsibility can create these things for you as a worker, so I don't understand what you're getting at. The fact that you keep saying that personal responsibility is the answer makes me think you don't seem to understand which problem I'm trying to address.

Those videos are stupid and nobody pays them any mind

Well then, where are workers getting the idea that they'd be better off without a union? And if we don't need unions, then how do you explain the charts I've shared and what should we do about it because the situation is unsustainable?

Listen, Banks, I get your position. You feel the whole thing is hopeless, so you're just going to focus on yourself. But it's not hopeless.

Two generations ago, we had a huge middle class and the highest standard of living in human history. Today, our corporations make way more money than they did back then. Our economy is ten times the size it was back then. We have a ton of technologies now that have made us far more productive than ever before.

There's no reason we can't have a strong middle class and a high standard of living now like we've had in the past. The only thing keeping that from happening is the upper 1% taking everything for themselves and everyday people being unwilling to do anything about it except point fingers, place blame, and declare it hopeless.

This situation is unfair, it's unproductive, and it's unsustainable. If our country keeps going in the direction we're going, we'll end up crushing our economy and decimating our standard of living.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Banks's Comment
member avatar
The union got a big raise, they didn't lose any workers

They're laying off a bunch of workers. Feeder drivers aren't working and union package handlers are being replaced by automation. It's all over other forums, just not being reported by the MSM.

We're talking about workers getting a fair wage

What's a fair wage? That's subjective, that's why I keep going back to personal responsibility. My coworker and I make the same amount of money, but we feel differently about it. I think we're paid fair because I live comfortably and this is the most money I've ever made and the easiest job I've ever had.

He thinks we don't because he lives paycheck to paycheck. Paycheck to paycheck will never stop because people overextend themselves, in his case it's with a pick up truck he doesn't need and other toys he's constantly bragging about.

Well then, where are workers getting the idea that they'd be better off without a union?

I answered that too. The union creates their own negative press and their bad at what they do. Think of it this way, would you hire a lawyer with an average 1.5 star review on Google? You probably wouldn't. The unions made themselves obsolete.

And if we don't need unions, then how do you explain the charts I've shared and what should we do about it because the situation is unsustainable?

Board room boys club. Board room picks a CEO and negotiates the salary. They're all friends and give each other more money. Unions have nothing to do with it, in fact they do the same thing. Unions don't negotiate how much execs do or don't get paid.

Two generations ago, we had a huge middle class and the highest standard of living in human history.

There's a lot of different reasons for the decline in the middle class. Most recently, it's wall Street deciding they want to be in the real estate game.

Then you have people borrowing too much money for frivolous purchases. Afterpay, affirm, klarna etc all encourage people to buy now pay later.

You also have artificially increased wages. Walmart lobbies for a higher minimum wage to put the screws to smaller companies and put them out of business. That artificially increased wage decreases the gap between skilled labor and unskilled labor putting everybody in the same pool and causing prices to go up because corporations won't eat that loss.

2 decades ago, people actually worked. Today, people are walking into jobs with a list of demands they feel they're entitled to.

Then there's the issue with the government guaranteeing student loans and 18 year olds drowning in debt before they have a chance, just to become a barista.

Unions can't fix any of this, but they can make it worse.

There's no reason we can't have a strong middle class and a high standard of living now like we've had in the past.

See above.

Listen, Banks, I get your position. You feel the whole thing is hopeless, so you're just going to focus on yourself.

I'm not hopeless. My bank account is flourishing and I've positioned myself to be able to make my family comfortable. I'm not sitting around crying about how much money the CEO of FedEx makes. That doesn't fix anything. I grew up on welfare in a roach infested apartment. I learned about money management watching YouTube videos and reading books. If I can do it, anybody can.

As you're well aware, people have no discipline. They want instant gratification.

We have a ton of technologies now that have made us far more productive than ever before.

What are we producing? We're a society of spoiled consumers. All production is taking place in Asia or South America.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Pelican's Comment
member avatar

Yeah, I agree with you, Brett.

A common response I hear when talking about this is "Well, look what they did to YRC!"

But I think I heard that YRC was already on shaky ground. I don't know, it sucks all those drivers lost their jobs.

What keeps me away from UPS is I had a former driver for them tell me the only way to really drive for them is to start at the bottom, pushing boxes in the distribution center, doing that for so long, then getting a step van truck, doing that for so long, then waiting for a driver to retire so you could apply for their job.

I'm not too interested in pushing boxes in a warehouse or delivering to peoples doorsteps so I'll pass.

Good company to work for, though.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

I've read and re read through a lot of this thread. I concur with a lot of what Brett and to say on the subject as well as what critics of the union say.

It reaffirms that we are not going to make any head way with the current union.

They are steeped in decades of corruption and mob ties. The union, particularly the Teamsters was always a tool of organized crime. The existing unions can not escape their history. Even today there is speculation of current and ongoing misdirection of funds, embezzlement, corruption and racketeering.

The unions were organized by and for devout Marxist communists as vehicles for insertion of communists in capitalist states. Most union leadership has ties with or are open members of CPUSA, the communist party of USA. This is a systemic issue as its an ideology and system of rule that killed over 130 million people and counting.

The union and labor movement can not be seperated from its orgins and ideological narrative. They can not be anything but political, and as such are far left progressive in nature. Marxists and communists are the last notch on the left, one can not go further left. The great majority of union leadership has and continues to support democrats.

These are principle reasons why an entirely different form of union is needed, specific to the trucking industry. One that is non partisan, self funding, transparent and ran by drivers for drivers with leadership that is elected and changed frequently.

Andrey's Comment
member avatar

Unions are evil, and my opinion has nothing to do with "anti-union propaganda." (The only propaganda I had been exposed to in the Soviet Union was a pro-union one, anything else was punished.) Any unionized economy is doomed for a very simple reason: unions destroy the very idea of value, making people believe that they can get more money and work less. The truth is the opposite: one has to work more to become richer. And counting other's money is the last thing that can make you rich. To tell the truth, I simply cannot understand how American private businesses allow unions. Asking for a raise is OK, but demanding it? I see it as an insult, and when insults are left unnoticed, they tend to grow into ugly problems.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Anheuser-Busch, Teamsters finalize five-year contract

Published: 10:12 AM CST March 6, 2024

Around 99% of Teamsters at the brewer's locations previously authorized a strike last December, citing a lack of improved wages, job protection, secure healthcare and retirement benefits. The union said the new agreement amends the majority of its concerns, including:

  • Significant job security for all 5,000 Teamsters at Anheuser-Busch.
  • Wage increases of $8/hour, including an immediate $4/hour raise in the first year.
  • $2,500 ratification bonus for every union member.
  • The same healthcare coverage options for all union workers.
  • Increased pension contributions and benefits.
  • Increased maximum vacation accrual.
  • Restoration of retirement benefits for active and retired members.

The CEO pay for Anheuser-Busch:

The company's earnings reports reveal that in 2023, the CEO of Anheuser-Busch, Brendan Whitworth, received a total compensation of $40.1 million, a substantial increase from previous years. CEO's pay was 12 times more than the $3.25 million in 2019, and 2.5 times more than the $16 million in 2022. This rapid growth in the CEO's pay can be attributed to various factors such as increased sales, market share, and overall company performance.

Well, the CEO got a nice raise because of his fantastic performance, right? Let's take a look:

  • 2019: Revenue - $54.6 billion, Earnings - $8.3 billion
  • 2020: Revenue - $52.3 billion, Earnings - $4.9 billion
  • 2021: Revenue - $54.4 billion, Earnings - $5.2 billion
  • 2022: Revenue - $57.8 billion, Earnings - $7.6 billion
  • 2023: Revenue - $54.0 billion, Earnings - $5.3 billion

Interesting. So, on his watch, in 2023, Brendan Whitworth allowed a marketing campaign that destroyed the company's brand and cost the company 3 BILLION DOLLARS in earnings and that number grows by the day because sales have not returned yet.

And the topper? The man didn't even lose his job! He just fired some marketing people and laughed all the way to the bank with his $40 million salary and his job intact.

rofl-3.gif rofl-2.gif wtf-2.gif

I have heard stories from dozens of truck drivers over the years who lost their job for backing into someone's mirror bracket or being late for a load one too many times. Even I was fired (and immediately re-hired) after five perfect years with a company for showing up early to a customer (my dispatcher never informed me). That's right...my mortal sin was showing up 30 minutes before my appointment time and without even asking for my side of it they fired me.

This guy costs the company billions of dollars and still has a job.

I heard a great truth today. A guy said, "Bitcoin will amount to a massive transfer of wealth from those who don't know how to do math to those who do."

That's what has happened to American workers over the years. You guys just don't get what's being done to you, even when I give you one outrageous example after another.

I think we'll have plenty of opportunities to keep this game going. I'll keep giving you guys one example after another of union victories, and you guys keep coming up with reasons to hate on em.

I said two things years ago: self-driving trucks would not happen anytime soon, and unions would make a comeback. Everyone thought I was crazy, but thus far, I'm right about both.

Just for fun, I'll throw this one on for fun just to show you how the idea of the people getting their fair share is catching on:

Dartmouth men’s basketball team votes to unionize

That's right. College athletes make untold millions for universities; as a reward, they get to sit in a classroom for free. Athletes have decided it's time to get their fair share. Mark my words: college athletes will become paid athletes. If they make the university millions of dollars, they deserve a cut. Simple as that. All they have to do is stick together:

“Today is a big day for our team,” said Dartmouth juniors Cade Haskins and Romeo Myrthil, who have led the effort. “We stuck together all season and won this election. It is self-evident that we, as students, can also be both campus workers and union members. Dartmouth seems to be stuck in the past. It’s time for the age of amateurism to end.”

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Also, I'd like to remind you guys that I'm not even a worker; I'm a business owner. This isn't even my fight anymore. I'm just trying to inform you guys that systematically over time, the government and corporations have transferred vast sums of wealth from the lower and middle class to the upper class. It happened slowly and steadily, so that most people didn't even notice. Many still don't realize this has gone on for decades.

I mean this as a wake-up call that we all need to pay closer attention to what's being done to our society. There are no coincidences. Most rich and powerful people became that way through the execution of long-term plans. They have the knowledge and patience to methodically extract increasing amounts of wealth from our society and remove our rights at the same time.

It's happening. It's undeniable.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Somewhere near the end of February, Dave Jackson resigned as CEO of Knight/Swift. He is a long time employee of the company, but served as CEO over approximately the last decade. He was instrumental in the greatest growth period of the company. A period which included such acquisitions as Swift, AAA Cooper, U.S. Express, and a considerable number of other trucking companies.

None of us low level folks have any inside information, but I'm confident the board of directors was not happy with some very flat fundamentals that should be increasing when a company grows like this one has. I'm quite sure it was requested of him to make the choice he did. That's how the corporate good old boys keep from embarrassing each other publicly, and how they can give each other huge bonuses while not really performing all that well.

I've never met Mr. Jackson. He seemed a very likeable and friendly sort of man who was often heard praising their drivers. I have no axe to grind with him.

He was awarded a 5.5 million dollar settlement package after his resignation! Okay... think about it. The board and the stockholders aren't happy with some of your results. Not happy enough to the degree they want you out. Yet they are willing to pay you rather well to leave!

I was reluctant to even post anything about this, but it's just been bothering me. Do you know what would happen if you or I decided to resign? The door would hit us in the backside before anyone even thought to thank us, and they would have our truck reassigned to a new driver before we had it cleaned out.

I'm not even really complaining or griping. I'm just pointing out some of the inequities the working class face in our current workforce environment. It can't be changed by an individual. It takes representation by a collective multitude.

I will keep doing my job as effectively and professionally as I've always done. I will do my part as a part of a greater team. I do not ever expect to reap the kind of financial rewards the men and women at the top are receiving while stepping all over each other to get the next promotion.

When I resign, I'll accept my T-shirts and ball-caps with a reluctant appreciation. I did my job for the pay I agreed to. The problem is that I agreed to too little. You can't make a better agreement without having some force that threatens the status quo.

Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
member avatar

Old School, I totally agree with you. The one thing that nobody ever seems to want to address is that those at the top in union leadership are no different than the CEO positions or those on the board. If there were unions out there who weren't corrupted with the same greed, I think you'd find more people would have faith in union representation. Should the working class have a voice? Absolutely. Should that voice effectively put them in no better overall situation? Well, that's a question that never seems to find a valid answer and it's all too easy in trucking to look back at the Teamsters or even the UAW and see the corruption and disdain from so many people.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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