Discover more from Wonkette
Tim Scott's Had It With Lazy Bums Who Build Our Cars, Keep Planes From Crashing
Power to the people ... in the corporate office!
Republican Senator and theoretical presidential candidate Tim Scott can’t contain his disgust with the United Auto Workers who are currently on strike in Michigan, Ohio, and Missouri.
Last week, he shared a story about his “buddy,” who we assume exists just like his Canadian girlfriend. Scott’s platonic friend worked at Nucor Steel and managed to eventually earn more than six figures — without a college degree and apparently without those pesky unions.
“He got paid for his work!” Scott boasted. “The harder he worked, not only did he get luckier, but he got more money.”
Oh, yes, it’s the popular “I Will Work Harder” mantra that Republicans so dearly love. Scott focuses on his one friend who did well but doesn’t consider everyone else his “prayer partner” worked with at Nucor. That’s what unions do, though — ensure fair pay and benefits for all workers.
If you’re already donating, please ignore this button. If you aren’t, here’s this button.
“We’re seeing UAW fight for more benefits and less hours working,” Scott complained. “More pay, fewer days on the job. It’s a disconnect from work and we have to find a way to encourage … people to go back to work.”
Just when I almost thought Scott couldn’t embarrass our ancestors further, he fully embraces an antebellum plantation work ethic.
Scott might dismiss the striking workers as shiftless but they do work — that’s the whole point of withholding their labor — and their demands are reasonable: They want to fully benefit from the bounty they produce for auto companies. Specifically, they want the Big Three automakers to eliminate their two-tier wage model that has many workers earning far less than $32 an hour, provide all employees defined benefit pensions, limit the the use of temporary workers that was considered a temporary concession after the 2008 financial crisis, and offer a four-day work week, which is both more efficient and better for families. (We have a four-day work week at Wonkette.)
But Scott isn’t interested in good-faith negotiations with workers. He can’t have the strikers hobbled or anything because slavery’s still illegal, but he can propose just firing everyone in a blind rage.
Monday, during a pointless campaign trip to Iowa, Scott was asked how he’d manage this auto worker strike as president, which is like asking him about the DJ set list at his wedding. Neither situation is likely to happen.
“I think Ronald Reagan gave us a great example when federal employees decided they were going to strike. He said, you strike, you’re fired. Simple concept to me. To the extent that we can use that once again, absolutely.”
President Reagan fired 11,359 air traffic controllers in 1981 — just two days into their strike. It was an asshole move but at least in the realm of possibility because they were federal employees. The president can’t summarily fire workers at a private company.
The Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization had asked the FAA for a reduced 32-hour work week (for safety concerns), a $10,000 pay increase for all air-traffic controllers and a better benefits package for retirement. The talks stalled, and Reagan’s solution involved replacing trained air traffic controllers with scabs who’d received “accelerated” training. This union-busting stunt was intended to show workers they were replaceable, and it was done with little regard for safety.
The irony, of course, was that Reagan argued the strike was illegal because air traffic control is such a critical job and if they don’t work, society is almost brought to a halt … but that’s not actually worth a raise.
It’s uncertain where Scott thinks he’d find workers willing to cross the picket line these days, but if the Big Three managed to find sufficient scabs after a mass purge, there’s no guarantee that quality will remain the same. Most people like their cars not catching fire when they drive them, and the rest prefer Teslas.
Republicans like Scott think Elon Musk is some sort of genius, despite his catastrophic business decisions, because he treats his employees like crap. In the real world, this is not a path to longterm success.
Scott should stop fantasizing about serving drinks at a restricted country club to Ron and Nancy and let reasonable people resolve the auto strike.
Subscribe to his YouTube channel for more fun content.
Catch SER on his podcast, The Play Typer Guy.