Today while driving around I saw a sign proclaiming “Save GM Oshawa” and, in true modern style, advertising the #OshawaMadeGM hashtag. The signs are courtesy UNIFOR and, presumably, the house where I saw this particular sign is the home of a GM worker. I don’t live in Oshawa, but many people in my city and this region of Ontario are employed by GM and GM suppliers (although many fewer than in decades past).
I’m going to assume that the intention of UNIFOR is to pressure both the Ontario provincial and Canadian federal governments to hand over MILLIONS of taxpayers’ dollars or, in the alternative, buy, barter or bribe jobs for union members.
It’s unfortunate for all the GM workers that they didn’t do more to preserve their own jobs — Like, for example, by dropping their union. I laughed out loud the last time the union was demanding more money and “concessions” from GM. Laughing because I could tell, as could everyone (likely including the union and GM workers themselves) that they were well and truly on the road to simply screwing themselves out of employment.
Don’t now come seeking yet another government bailout or bribery campaign aimed at a multi-BILLION dollar private company.
Yes GM is important to the local Oshawa and Durham Region economies and beyond, but GM has been dying a long slow death in Oshawa. Everyone knew this day was coming. It most certainly would have come sooner — years ago — had governments not bailed out GM. It’s time to stop propping up private enterprise of this type in order to “secure jobs,” as the union likes to talk about. GM had a decades long run in Oshawa. While the union may like to proclaim that Oshawa made GM it is far more accurate to say that GM created Oshawa or, at least, put it on the map. It is time to let GM make the decisions they need to make to remain competitive in a changing global world of auto manufacturing. And, more importantly, it’s time to stop intervening in such decisions by attempting to bribe and buy just a few more years. We’ve done that. We’ve already bought and paid for the extra years. It’s time to say goodbye to GM in Oshawa.