EVs, the UAW, and politics | News, Sports, Jobs – Alpena News



Everybody wants to save the environment and the planet — that is until it’s time to make a personal sacrifice to do it.

For the sake of grinding out another “insightful” column, let’s assume the skeptics who believe they are right and here’s their argument to prove it.

Four words: Switching to electric vehicles.

In case that storyline slipped by you, President Joe Biden and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer are up to their eyelids putting on the hard sell to the motoring public to get with the program by chucking their gas-guzzlers for more green-friendly EVs.

But their challenge is that their arch nemesis is plowing fertile political ground to turn their hard sell to mush.

Two words: Donald Trump.

He has single-handedly flipped the conversation from saving the Earth to saving your neck, or, in this case, your job.

Five words: United Auto Workers contract talks.

Trump is masterfully scaring union workers by warning them that, if the dynamic duo of Biden/Whitmer have their way, Detroit will be producing EVs that not only require fewer parts but fewer employees to assemble them as a result. Some reports indicate that number could be 85,000.


The membership has figured that out and sent an urgent message to new UAW President Shawn Fain to get on the stick and do something about job security in the current contract talks.

That takes us back to the days when the unions got job security by forcing the trains to hire workers who used to shovel coal, even though there was no more coal to shovel. Yet there they were in the cab of the train, doing squat yet dragging down a check.

They kept their jobs while the train folks tossed dollars down the drain just to keep labor peace.

Fast-forward to the Detroit Three automakers who know they can fatten their bottom line by getting rid of assembly line workers. They call it a salary opportunity, but how hard will the unions push to replicate the train fireman scenario?

UAW President Fain has heard all the fears from his vocal members and has warned the White House with four more words: You have a problem.

Biden is in the Oval Office today because union Democrats rallied with others to put him there and Biden knows that, if they stay home in 2024 or vote for someone else, he will lose his job security.

Meanwhile, the Republicans are grinning from ear to ear.

Unable to win votes on the abortion or gun safety issue, which the Democrats have cornered, the Republicans are geeked to politically exploit the natural fears of auto workers.

And, to spice up their fears, the Republicans have added a pinch of arsenic to the sauce by playing the China card, along with the job-loss gambit.

Auto workers and others are being told that the real winners on the EV debate are the Communist Chinese, who have the EV battery market cornered — about 70% of the market, and, without their product, the switch to EVs could be turned off.

It’s a two-fer for the Commies as they roll in the bucks and, if they stopped shipping the batteries, that could damage EV sales big time.

That is a classic case of turnabout is fair play for the GOP.

The Republicans took a political hit in 2006 when then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s crony, Mark Brewer, used the “he is shipping jobs to China while killing them in Michigan,” on her opponent, Dick DeVos.

And it worked.

Now, the Republicans seek to even the score by denouncing the well-intentioned efforts by the Democrats to save the planet by telling workers they have two choices: save the environment or save your family by not losing your jobs.

Four words: Not a close call.

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