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Old 07-06-2009, 02:17 PM   #21
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IMHO, this clearly is a "white collar oriented" recession. In earlier recessions, any white collar folks let go in manufacturing were absorbed by banking, health care, and retail.
Maybe the overall #s reflected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics do not apply in your area. I don't disagree about white collars employees not being able to find white collar jobs, however, blue collar employees are having trouble finding any kind of job. (Well, jobs that fit their self image, one's that don't require too much work, oops wrong thread)

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Old 07-06-2009, 03:25 PM   #22
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Maybe the overall #s reflected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics do not apply in your area. I don't disagree about white collars employees not being able to find white collar jobs, however, blue collar employees are having trouble finding any kind of job. (Well, jobs that fit their self image, one's that don't require too much work, oops wrong thread)
True. But as the case of GM and other automakers have shown us, if you're a blue collar shop with under collective bargaining, it can be a lot harder and/or more costly to lay off blue collar workers than salaried, non-union white collar workers. So some manufacturing firms facing trouble may cut the white collar side first. And the white collar side is more likely to be laid off as opposed to being offered early retirement incentives.
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Old 07-06-2009, 03:47 PM   #23
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In my area(Wisconsin), almost all the lay-offs I hear about are blue-collar manufacturing jobs. The company I work for never laid anyone off and has been hiring for the last few months and still are. I'm a machine operator and my department has a back log large enough to last thru the end of the year so not all manufacturing is struggling. I don't personally know anyone who has lost there job due to the recession.
I'm non-union which means less pay and no retirement benefits but far less chance of being laid off.
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Old 07-06-2009, 03:53 PM   #24
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I'm non-union which means less pay and no retirement benefits but far less chance of being laid off.
It's interesting. Obviously I don't want to see this become a political union/non-union debate, but it is interesting to see how company executives operate. When they have a good excuse to hack away at union jobs according to the law and the CBA governing the contract, they'll do so. But some unions (including the UAW) are historically pretty strong about negotiating difficult and expensive terms for laying off workers. In addition -- and perhaps more to the point -- with the automakers, the layoffs would have to come with the cheaper less senior workers, not the ones under "legacy" health care, pension plans and wage scales that are the most costly.

I think that's why they aim for "early retirement incentives" instead of layoffs in their blue collar jobs -- the union labor they'd *really* want off the payroll for cost containment purposes can't easily be laid off under their CBA. But they can be sweet-talked into retirement.
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Old 07-06-2009, 04:03 PM   #25
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Ziggy,

All I'm trying to say is that it is hard to say this is a White collar Recession when the unemployment rate for those w/o high school diploma is more than 3x the rate for those with College Degrees. Generally speaking, Blue collar workers fall into the w/o HS diploma and only HS Diploma categories.

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Old 07-06-2009, 04:42 PM   #26
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Seeing how this all unfolds is answering a question that rattled around in my head off and on for 29 years...
why couldn't I get a white collar job when I first graduated college in 1980? This recession reminds me a lot of what was going on then, except I was a brash 21 yo with no knowledge of the business world and economy.
Jobs can be found or self created for those who need to pay the bills. It may not be the best job, but if it pays, it counts.
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Old 07-06-2009, 05:02 PM   #27
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All I'm trying to say is that it is hard to say this is a White collar Recession when the unemployment rate for those w/o high school diploma is more than 3x the rate for those with College Degrees. Generally speaking, Blue collar workers fall into the w/o HS diploma and only HS Diploma categories.
Oh, I agree with that. The blue collar has been hit in every recession. But until the last decade or so, it seemed like the white collar jobs were more offshoring-proof than blue collar manufacturing. I think that's why it "feels" so much worse to white collar workers -- they're just not used to this. They were told so many times growing up that college was the key, and for a fair number of them that must feel like a lie right now.
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"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

RIP to Reemy, my avatar dog (2003 - 9/16/2017)
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