hourly wages for workers in manufacturing

Posted: December 29, 2011
By: Clay Cerny

According to an article posted on MSNBC, the UAW is taking on its biggest challenge in years.  The union will attempt to organize auto plants in the U.S.owned by non-American manufacturers.  It’s about time that the union reaches out to these workers.  The article tries to claim that the workers might not want to be organized.  That’s a great assumption, but it’s based on no evidence.  The union will also have to fight laws that limit workers’ rights to organize.  However, that’s a fight that should have been going on for several years now. 

How do we know this article was posted on a corporate media website (“Lean Forward”  Really?)?  The subhead reads: “It’s a battle the union cannot afford to lose.”  Sheer nonsense and fear mongering.  What the union and working people cannot afford to do is lie down like a welcome mat as it has for decades.  When we look at the way wealth has been distributed over the past 30 years, the message of the 99% should be pretty obvious:  It’s our turn. 

Related:  In Huffington Post, Laura Clawson provides a chart comparing hourly wages of manufacturing workers throughout the world. U.S. manufacturing workers make an average of $34.74.  German manufacturing workers make $43.76.  In Norway the average rate is $57.53.  These numbers tell an interesting story, and they have nothing to do with tax cuts or unicorn-like “job creators.”