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      03-20-2010, 02:46 AM   #11
scollins
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 742 View Post
Yes they pay more. But they also get more. And the point remains that Germany pays its factory workers more. Keep in mind that $50/hour labor cost in manufacturing as compared to our $30. Would you rather be a 10 year factory worker in a BMW factory or a 10 year factory worker in Detroit?

And they are still running a huge trade surplus while we are shipping jobs to third world countries.
I'm not sure where you are getting the figure that German factory auto workers get $50/hr vs. the US average of $30. According to this article, the average BMW factory worker makes 40,000 Euros. They say that is equivalent to $60,000 US, but at the current exchange rate, it is more like $54,000.

http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,4824767,00.html

The article is dated October 2009, so pretty recent.

Assuming a 35 hour work week (standard in Germany), that works out to 1,820 hours worked for $54,000. That is $29.67/hr, which is no where near $50/hr. Even if we run the figures at a generous $60,000, it isn't anywhere near $50/hr ($32.97.)

According to the UAW here: http://www.uaw.org/barg/07fact/fact02.php , the average UAW assembler working for GM made $27.81/hr, while more skilled workers earned $32.32/hr. If we assume there are 2 assemblers for every "more skilled" worker, the weighted average is roughly $29.31/hr.

So in the end, to answer your question, I would rather be a 10 year Detroit auto worker making nearly the same as my BMW counterpart, but only paying 24% taxes vs. 38%. Especially when you factor in UAW benefits that are above and beyond that wage rate, where the BMW worker is paying higher taxes to get his government benefits. So in the end, the GM worker is coming out much further ahead. Which is really the reason the jobs are being sent overseas; our labor, dollar for dollar and hour for hour is much more expensive.

And one final thought, you say "sure they pay more, but they get more." More what? If you don't use the services the government provides, are you getting more? If you aren't sick and don't go to the doctor very often, are you getting more for your health care dollar? A young adult with no family to support that doesn't get sick very often can carry just "major medical" and pocket the difference in premiums.

Again, personally, I'd rather choose where I spend my OWN money instead of someone else taking it from me to spend how they see fit. It is even worse when it is billed as "for your own good".....
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