Remember how conservatives blamed the UAW for the collapse of the American auto industry, claiming their high wages and benefits–not the disastrously-stupid decisions made by auto company executives–were the cause?
And remember how conservatives said the automaker’s troubles would be fixed if the UAW gave their members the same wages and benefits of non-union foreign-owned shops?
Toyota Motor, the Japanese auto giant, announced Monday that it expected the first loss in 70 years in its core vehicle-making business, underscoring how the economic crisis is spreading across the global auto industry.
Analysts said Toyota’s downward revision, its second in two months, showed that the worst financial crisis since the Depression is threatening not just the Big Three but even relatively healthy automakers in Japan, South Korea and Europe. Many other companies will also soon be reporting losses.
Worse, analysts said that they expect next year to be even more painful, amid forecasts that the global economy will continue to slide until at least the summer. This could cause a significant shakeout, driving cash-strapped smaller and weaker companies into the arms of a smaller number of bigger, richer players.
“It is just a matter of time before all major automakers are losing money,” an auto analyst in Tokyo for Credit Suisse Securities, Koji Endo, said. “And things will just get worse next year, when companies start losing money for the second consecutive year.”
The GOP lionized companies like Honda and Toyota as examples of what the American auto industry should look like (namely, non-unionized).
In fact, during the debate over autoworker compensation, Toyota was held up as the standard of what autoworkers should earn. And now they’re falling apart, too.
Don’t worry, though; I’m sure the GOP will find some way to blame this on the UAW/Democrats/Barack Obama. Just give them time.
(h/t John Cole)