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ITALIAN926

join:2003-08-16
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

2 edits

1 recommendation

Cmon

quote:
and members of the Communications Workers of America have authorized a strike if their demands aren't met.
People really need to choose their words more carefully. These middle class workers , among MOST unionized workers, are looking to keep the wages and benefits they have. These corporations are trying to strip everyone of a decent life.

In these negotiations, and most, its the CORPORATIONS that are making the outrageous demands.

Downward Spiral for all, well except the 1%

CXM_Splicer
Looking at the bigger picture
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Very true. Unfortunately, CenturyLink will most likely win concessions from the union just like Verizon will. I don't think this trend is going to stop anytime soon so the American worker is going to have to learn to adapt. If the corporate world wants to view labor as a commodity rather than a business partner, then labor should stop acting like they are a business partner. If a highly profitable company decides to cut worker compensation by 20%, then workers reduce their productivity by 30%. After all, to continue producing when your compensation is cut is a bad business decision. Tools break and get lost, sickness increases due to stress, paperwork will have mistakes, important files will get lost; if you pay less money, you are going to get a cheaper commodity, plain and simple.


Lone Wolf
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Reviews:
·Verizon Online DSL
reply to ITALIAN926
Oddly enough, every headline about the workers of this company reads:

CenturyLink workers in 13 states authorize strike

CenturyLink workers in West authorize strike

CenturyLink workers in Utah, elsewhere authorize strike

I'm not sure who is not choosing their words carefully.

You're blaming the CORPORATION for this when it is the CORPORATION that provides jobs to people so they can survive. Without the CORPORATION they would need to live off GOVERNMENT handouts and entitlement programs.

Bless the CORPORATIONS!

In other news CenturyLink Inc (CTL:NYSE) closed up $.41 today. This might be a good purchase at $39.88 if they are able to get some relief from the unions.
--
Vote the Ins Out.
One term for all politicians.
Give the government back to the people.
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openbox9
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join:2004-01-26
Germany
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reply to CXM_Splicer

Re: Cmon

said by CXM_Splicer:

If a highly profitable company decides to cut worker compensation by 20%, then workers reduce their productivity by 30%.

I understand your logic, but given the current level of unemployment, can employees afford to not consider themselves a "commodity"? I realize there will always be a place for high-quality skilled labor, but I'm hard pressed to believe that all 13,000 CenturyLink employees in this situation fall into that category. I don't believe management should always win, but at the same time, labor needs to be flexible as well. The environment is quite different today than it was a decade ago...for everyone.
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CXM_Splicer
Looking at the bigger picture
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join:2011-08-11
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reply to openbox9

Re: Cmon

quote:
I understand your logic, but given the current level of unemployment, can employees afford to not consider themselves a "commodity"?

I agree that it is the high level of unemployment that enables business to take advantage of the workers but I am saying that the workers should consider themselves a commodity. I don't agree that business should treat them like a commodity (it creates a relationship which counters efficiency) but if that's how they are treated, it would be stupid of them not to accept and reciprocate. It is the workers who insist on being business partners that will keep current levels of productivity, or even more stupidly, actually increase productivity as others do less. As for a place for highly skilled labor, yes of course they are needed... but does a company that takes away from its workers attract highly skilled labor? That place will undoubtedly be at some other company. I also agree that the environment is different; business has adapted, labor is still in denial.

openbox9
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join:2004-01-26
Germany
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said by CXM_Splicer:

I agree that it is the high level of unemployment that enables business to take advantage of the workers but I am saying that the workers should consider themselves a commodity.

And my point is that with the number of people looking to take your job, this is exactly the time that you don't want to be seen as a commodity. You need to stand out and demonstrate your level of value, not be an employee that is easily replaceable as a "commodity".
said by CXM_Splicer:

As for a place for highly skilled labor, yes of course they are needed... but does a company that takes away from its workers attract highly skilled labor?

Takes away? Valuable and highly skilled labor will always have a home in business. I think we agree on that.
said by CXM_Splicer:

I also agree that the environment is different; business has adapted, labor is still in denial.

We mostly agree on this, except I would argue that management is in the process of adapting, while labor hopes for the continued luxuries of the past.

CXM_Splicer
Looking at the bigger picture
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said by openbox9:

And my point is that with the number of people looking to take your job, this is exactly the time that you don't want to be seen as a commodity. You need to stand out and demonstrate your level of value, not be an employee that is easily replaceable as a "commodity".

The problem with that line of thinking is twofold: It is the Company that decides how to treat you... and it is not based on your level of value. ANYONE is replaceable, regardless of skill level, and that's exactly the way companies want it. The current mindset of the majority of big, public companies is 'if you aren't on board with us taking more and you taking less then we will find someone who is'. Your skill set is not going to change that mentality, they consider you a commodity because it is more profitable for them and you can't change that... all you can do is accept it and run with it.

Secondly, by adopting the 'be a great worker' mind set, you are enabling them to continue this same downward-spiral of pitting workers against each other to cut back to the lowest possible priced commodity. When they reach the point where every employee they hire works less then they person they just fired, they will have to change their mindset. Until then, the price of the commodity will continue to drop.

said by openbox9:

Takes away? Valuable and highly skilled labor will always have a home in business. I think we agree on that.

We do. But they will only have that place if they agree to take less, otherwise, there is the door.

said by openbox9:

We mostly agree on this, except I would argue that management is in the process of adapting, while labor hopes for the continued luxuries of the past.

I would say that workers rightly believe that they should be rewarded for the profits they generate for the company. The REAL trickle-down economics is: Companies make more money... they pay their employees more money... the employees spend that money... the economy gets better. Instead whats happening is: Companies make more money... they put it offshore in tax havens... employees get paid less using high unemployment as leverage... economy gets worse. Do you disagree with this?

openbox9
Premium
join:2004-01-26
Germany
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said by CXM_Splicer:

ANYONE is replaceable, regardless of skill level

Of course. However replacing employees comes at a cost...skilled labor more so.
said by CXM_Splicer:

they consider you a commodity because it is more profitable for them and you can't change that... all you can do is accept it and run with it.

Labor has value. The more valuable a person is, the lesser your belief is a possibility.
said by CXM_Splicer:

I would say that workers rightly believe that they should be rewarded for the profits they generate for the company.

I don't have a problem with this so long as workers take the bad with the good. When the economy tanks and business is slow, are employees going to be willing to take a hit just as much as they demand a share of the profits during the good times? Or will the employers be expected to bear the responsibility during the bad times?
said by CXM_Splicer:

The REAL trickle-down economics is: Companies make more money... they pay their employees more money... the employees spend that money... the economy gets better.

In general principle, I agree.
said by CXM_Splicer:

Instead whats happening is: Companies make more money... they put it offshore in tax havens... employees get paid less using high unemployment as leverage... economy gets worse. Do you disagree with this?

Not completely. Companies make money both on and offshore. The offshore money won't be brought home because of the insane tax liability that will be realized. That money does our country no good, yet it is seen by the laypeople as huge surpluses of cash that the company is sitting on, not paying employees, creating jobs, etc. This doesn't apply to all company profits and cash hoards, but it is a significant amount. I agree with the logic that employees can be squeezed more now than what was possible during the last couple of decades with the current level of unemployment aiding in the squeezing. The health of the economy is not strictly dependent upon employee pay and our level of consumption. It is important, but not the only factor.
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CXM_Splicer
Looking at the bigger picture
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1 edit
reply to openbox9

Re: Cmon

I agree that it is harder to replace workers in proportion to their skill level but there is simply no point along that line where a company will go from treating them like a commodity to a business partner. If there was a person seen as that valuable... they would be promoted and no longer be a worker. Actually, Seidenberg was originally a splicer at Verizon before working his way up to CEO. Corporations (Verizon at least) don't operate like that anymore, they aren't interested in promoting replaceable commodities.

I also think we have seen many examples of employees willingly making concessions for the survival of the company and agree that this is something that labor, executives, and shareholders all need to do... where appropriate. The sad fact is that most of these companies are not in financial hardship, they are making record profits and still demanding concessions from the workers. This is making an already imbalanced situation worse.

I disagree that the tax rate is 'insane' to bring the money back. They considerany taxes insane and many companies end up with refunds rather than contributing anything from their domestic profits... but then, you know all this. The point I was making is that as long as this course of action continues, the economy will continue a downward trend. True it is not the only factor in the economy but, judging from the effects we can see happening, it is a major one.

I don't foresee business suddenly deciding to do what's best for the economy and reversing this behavior. Any downward trend will level off naturally at some point but the real question is WHERE is that point. If it is too low, government will step in with regulation like the New Deal (although I don't see that happening within the next four years no matter which side the coin lands on). For it to happen naturally, business must start to reach unacceptable levels of productivity... in other words "You get what you pay for". The sooner the American worker realizes this, the better off we will be.

Edited for a ton of spelling errors

openbox9
Premium
join:2004-01-26
Germany
kudos:2
said by CXM_Splicer:

I agree that it is harder to replace workers in proportion to their skill level but there is simply no point along that line where a company will go from treating them like a commodity to a business partner.

Commodity may be a bit strong of a term, but I agree, most businesses probably aren't going to elevate most of their employees to the status of "business partner".
said by CXM_Splicer:

If there was a person seen as that valuable... they would be promoted and no longer be a worker.

Truly valuable people are eventually promoted or they take their value elsewhere. Should it not be the aspirations of valuable people to continue bettering themselves? Isn't that what the "American Dream" is all about?
said by CXM_Splicer:

Corporations (Verizon at least) don't operate like that anymore, they aren't interested in promoting replaceable commodities.

Supervisors and managers have to come from somewhere. They aren't all going to be 22 year old (M)BA fresh out of college.
said by CXM_Splicer:

I disagree that the tax rate is 'insane' to bring the money back. They considerany taxes insane and many companies end up with refunds rather than contributing anything from their domestic profits... but then, you know all this.

I do. I'm sure you've read my posts suggesting that corporations shouldn't pay income taxes, but that's a different discussion. Regarding bringing the money home that's sitting overseas, as a business, would you leave money that you earned elsewhere (and has already been taxed) overseas to conduct overseas business operations, or would you bring it home and pay up to 40% on the money to tax authorities?
said by CXM_Splicer:

I don't foresee business suddenly deciding to do what's best for the economy and reversing this behavior.

Likely not unless it advances the business' self interests.

CXM_Splicer
Looking at the bigger picture
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join:2011-08-11
NYC
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1 edit
Yes, it is a strong term but it is not mine. I took it from a discussion with skeechan who insists that labor should be viewed as a commodity. I do agree that corporate America (well, Wall St specifically) sees labor in that light but IMO that is part of the problem... not the way it should be.

Promotions at Verizon used to be from the field but, ironically, it very often ended up being people that didn't have sufficient skills to be comfortable in the field. 'Truly Valuable' is of course subjective but I think you would agree that skilled workers are not worthless simply because they are not promoted to higher levels. The fact (at Verizon at least) is that no one aspires to enter management anymore because they are treated so poorly... I heard there was another round of management layoffs just announced. I don't even know if the path to 'promotion' still exists for us workers.

I am sure you know, or could guess, that my opinion on corporate taxation is completely opposite of yours... I think we should return to pre-Regan tax rates for corporations and the upper class. Large corporations and their highly successful owners, have profited nicely from our system and it is only right that they should help maintain it. If a company has legitimate operations overseas and wants to keep profits where they were made to pay for operations... that is understandable. When they set up fictitious operations overseas and show profits in those entities because they share your view that they should not have to pay income tax then I think we have a major problem. Someone can set up theirr own such company here:

»www.taxhavens.biz/

Illegal, you say? Well with a few layers of removal and the secrecy of the offshore banks, you can easily avoid detection or prosecution.

More on topic though, what is your opinion on the declining state of labor in the country? As unemployment (and the population) increases and business has even more leverage to lower salaries, where to you see that trend taking us? Or, even more important then how you or I see it, is this something that business should consider past their own short term interests?