Thursday, October 21, 2010

Some people call me Maurice...

In the Oct 19th USA Today - the Nation's newspaper (free read in a hotel) - there was a big ol' full page add titled:
Well America what do you think now?
It was from some guy who calls himself “The Grizz” but goes by a less ominous name of  Maurice Taylor.  It seems that The Grizz ran for the Republican nomination for President back in 1996 garnering a substantial 1% of the vote in all the primaries he ran in.  I would not bring this up had it not been for the tone he set in his open letter to the American People.  Apparently he lost becoming the nominee and hence our President because no one liked him.
I know how all politicians want to be liked, but I don’t care. I just want to get the job done.
If I had to hazard a guess, its because you are really not the kind of guy the working man could like.  Which is odd because from what I can gather you came up from a blue collar start.  But alas, a lot of people forget what it was like to walk in the steel-toed boots of their past.

I get kind of peeved when these CEO types brag about how they create jobs.  As if there would be no jobs without the benevolence and financial outlay these fine men and woman exude.  So when they makes the statement "I have created jobs" I start to suspect they are probably taking credit for something that would have happened anyway.

Still, maybe he is a job creator - maybe he does care about making sure worker type folks have a "great paying" "manufacturing" job so they can support their families and contribute to society and share in the American dream just like the CEO of Titan International does.  Maybe he is everything to America as he paints himself to be.  Maybe...oh....wait...really?

On May 1, 1998, the 650 members of the United Steelworkers of America, Local 164 [w]here forced into an Unfair Labor Practice Strike.  During the negotiations preceding this strike, Titan International Inc. President and CEO, Morry Taylor, attempted to eliminate pension and medical benifits and illegally move jobs and equipment out of the plant.  He also forced employees to work excessive manditory overtime, sometimes working people as many as 26 days in a row without a day off.
Well sure, that's probably just made up stuff from the lame-stream liberal media that just has it out for the job producers just trying to make a go at it.  What?  Thats from where?  The June 27, 2001 Congressional Record?

Well sometimes a few eggs get cracked when tough negotiations need to be made (that's why they call him The Grizz and not Maurice).  After all - as he states - "I’m not some intellectual talking head who has never run anything."  What he does to create these jobs is to leverage "closed, bankrupt or money losing companies" and when they are "turned around" Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! It really is that easy to create jobs and according to our job producing CEO named Maurice, the plan is simple.  All you got to do is follow this Titan International business model for producing jobs:
More than 300 workers at Titan's Natchez, Mississippi facility went on strike in September 1998 after Titan fired the entire workforce in a fashion the NLRB has since alleged illegal. The firings followed a complex financial deal in which Titan and various interests associated with Titan CEO Morry Taylor and his family took a controlling interest in Condere Corporation, a bankrupt company which owned Fidelity Tire in Natchez. In September 1998, Titan bought Condere's assets, and then proceeded to fire the Natchez workers, who were represented by the USWA.
OK...OK, so he doesn't like Unions...I mean can you blame him?  The nerve of paying a guy $33.00 bucks and hour when you could get away with $21.00!  Pesky Unions, if a guy can't support his family on a pre-tax income of $43,000.00 a year he's doing something wrong.  Jiminy Cricket if money is that tight send the wife to work!

So what else does ol' Maurice think would make for a better America and would be good for the made in the USA blue-collar bunch.
  1. Well eliminate Government jobs for one.  Unemployment would help bring down the cost of government and would be in line with the 25% tax rate he thinks should be placed on corporations.
  2. Eliminate sick leave for Government Employees.  My god!  You know what that costs for an employee making $35K a year?  $134 bucks a day - or looking at it another way, that equates to 52,238 sick days worth of pay savings that could then be spent on something like - oh I don't know - maybe a run for the Republican Nominee in 1996! ($7,000,000.00 if you were wondering)
  3. Freeze all Pension Plans.  You know - that 401K is such a better deal (well it is for the public companies needing to sell shares).  And besides, a guy who has worked for 19 years under his current pension agreement would be more than happy to have things changed mid stream.  Especially if he is in his 50's.
Such brilliance!  I don't know where to start.  But ol Maurice did get one bit of observation right:  
There is a difference "between public companies like Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola, Ford, etc.  It is the private companies that create jobs. The public companies I have listed were all private at one time and run by an entrepreneur. They are all run today by professional managers who are really business politicians. Entrepreneurs are not smooth politicians; they focus on building their business. Professional managers look at building their business but also building their image."
So when you said at the very beginning of your "Well America what do you think now?" USA Today advertisement:
I am Chairman/CEO of Titan International, Inc. (NYSE: TWI) - [a public company].
Where you including yourself as one of those smooth business politicians?

So what do I think now?  You are nothing more than a narcissistic blow-hard interested in building wealth for yourself.  You don't give a shit about making jobs unless they pay a wage low enough where you can contend it is reasonable.  But I suspect what is in play here has more to do with ridding yourself of the name Maurice and replacing it with a big and scary sounding name like The Griz.  That's what will give you stature!  That's what you value - the perception that you are tough and able to provide that "entrepreneurial leadership" although you lack the same intellect as your peers.

I'm not going to take anything away from the fact that your holdings have performed well.  It's how you have done it that leaves a lot to be desired.  Alls fair in business and politics I hear and you have played it well.  Too bad you could not have tried to achieve the same outcome in a bit more sensitive way towards the men and woman who provide the product you sell.  All workers who are dependent upon job creators deserve consideration for a fair and livable wage, dignity, security, and a share in the wealth you and your other job creators feel so entitled to keep to yourselves.

So what do I think now?  Not much Maurice...not much.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

spot on. It so sad how this person can discard the human element of his success and the people below him. It's just really sad.