Workers at Chrysler are now facing a 40% workforce reduction of 11,000, as the new investors from Cerberus who have purchased Chrysler from Daimler hope to cut costs and make Chrysler a much smaller company. These unfortunate workers at Chrysler clearly missed their best opportunity from investor Kirk Kerkorian to make Chrysler the largest employee-owned company in America when Daimler refused the offer from Kerkorian.
Borrowing a concept from European socialism, Kerkorian hoped to make Chrysler a new type of role model for an a large employee owned business. Right now a number of smaller grocery store chains in the U.S. are employee owned by employee ownership in stock or their retirement plans or some other means.
With so many U.S. corporations giving up on jobs in the U.S., the role of employees to push for more ownership of their workplaces is an idea that has clearly come to the more economically conservative U.S. which seems to have always been very much against any new economic concepts that borrow from European socialist models. Surprisingly, Round Table Pizza, BiMart, WinCo Foods, Food Giant and a few other relatively large businesses in the U.S. are employee owned. And at the even smaller level, worker co-ops are popular among alternative businesses such as smaller health food stores.
Workers clearly need to form more employee-owned companies and coops and become union members to protect any future employment in many companies in which they are working. With job outsourcing and businesses being sold right and left to investors who will cut both jobs and expenses in periodic 'belt tightening campaigns", worker control of their workplace and ultimate employment future is vital to their own economic future.
The Chrysler "axe massacre" of 11,000 jobs is the ugly alternative when employees are not in control of their workplace and future.
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