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Tag Archives: Auto industry

How Enforcement of the USMCA Will End a Corporate Race to the Bottom

Yves here. I hope Tom Conway’s optimistic view of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, aka USMCA or Nafta 2.0 proves to be correct. The pact includes provisions that give Mexican workers rights to organize, most importantly, expedited procedures for enforcement against rogue employers. USMCA required the Mexican government to pass new pro-labor laws and implement an enforcement regime. From a White & Case write-up: The Mechanism establishes a process by which the governments of the...

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The Chip Shortage: Brought to You By American Neoliberalism

Truth be told, I’m surprised it’s taken this long for America (and even some foreign) manufacturers to have trouble with their chip supplies. I had taken note of America’s dependence on chips made in China and Taiwan before I started blogging, in the mid 2000s. Even though even back then, it was over half, the justification was that those were low-end, commodity chips. Not to worry. Once in a great while, I would look for data on the percentage of chips used in the US and would come up with...

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Insurance Companies Flag “Driver Disengagement” as Factor in Robot Car Safety

By Lambert Strether of Corrente I first wrote about robot cars back in 2016, in “Self-Driving Cars: How Badly Is the Technology Hyped?” (“Spoiler alert: Pretty badly”). Back then shady operators like Musk (Tesla), Kalanick (Uber), Zimmer (Lyft), and even the CEO of Ford were predicting Level 5 autonomous vehicles — I prefer “robot cars,” because why give these people the satisfaction — in five years. That’s in 2021, which is [allow me to check a date calculator] 42 days from now. So how’s...

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Right to Repair Redux: Massachusetts Ballot Questions

This is Naked Capitalism fundraising week. 1725 donors have already invested in our efforts to combat corruption and predatory conduct, particularly in the financial realm. Please join us and participate via our donation page, which shows how to give via check, credit card, debit card, or PayPal. Read about why we’re doing this fundraiser,what we’ve accomplished in the last year, and our current goal, more original reporting. By Jerri-Lynn Scofield, who has worked as a securities lawyer and a...

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Meaning Mexico

It took some doing, and some time, but Mexico has managed to bring its car production back up to more normal levels. For two months, there had been practically zero automaking in one of the biggest auto-producing nations. Getting back near where things left off, however, isn’t exactly a “V” shaped recovery; it’s only halfway.Two months of zero production are two months of zero sales for the OEM’s producing down there. The latest data is for the month of July meaning that for all the...

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More on Deaths of Despair: New Study Links Early Job Loss to Higher Rates of Overdose Deaths and Suicides

A new study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Public Health (hat tip reader ma) gives more granular insight into the triggers of so-called deaths of despair, as in the AIDS-level rise of deaths of the middle aged with high-school-only educations. We’ve embedded the study at the end of this post; the data supplement is here. The article uses a large data set of United AutoWorkers at GM in Michigan, with workers hired as far back as 1938, including mortality information. The authors...

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Even If Joe Biden Wins in a Blowout, the ‘Global Economy’ Is Not Coming Back

Yves here. I hate to sound like a Luddite, but the idea of global production, in the form of China as the world’s manufacturer, was never sustainable. I am still gobsmacked that Western multinational and tech execs would make their operations hostage to a country where they have no influence over their government, and that government has a strong interest in developing its own champions. By Marshall Auerback, a market analyst and commentator. Produced by Economy for All, a project of the...

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There Can Be No Equality Without a Dramatic Renewal of Employment Opportunity for All American Workers

Yves here. For those who didn’t grow up in the era of good union-protected manufacturing jobs, it’s hard to convey adequately how different things were then. Blue collar workers could buy a house and a car, support a stay-at-home wife, and often also afford a recreation luxury, like a boat or a cabin. Those manufacturing wages also set a foundation for white collar wages. In addition, in manufacturing towns, class differences were minor. The kids of plant workers played with the children of...

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Why Relentless Labor Rights Enforcement Will Make or Break the New NAFTA

Yves here. One of the reasons the so-called Nafta 2.0 was touted as better than its predecessor was that it contained protections for labor bargaining rights in Mexico. The argument was that stronger labor rights in Mexico would reduce the level of labor arbitrage and hence the harm to US workers. The deal has only just come into effect, so it’s an open question as to whether these provisions were a big headfake or will turn out to have teeth. By Tom Conway, the international president of...

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Uber Destroys More Value: Demolishes Bikes from Failed Rental Businesses Rather Than Donate Them

Not that it’s needed, but if you are hankering for yet more evidence that Uber is run by a libertarian narcissists who actively resist doing the right thing because disruption, today’s object lesson comes from Uber’s certain-to-fail e-scooter and bike rental businesses. Uber capitulated to their predictabe mounting losses and shuttered those ventures. But rather than give the surplus bikes away, it had them “recycled,” which is weasel-speak for crushed. Now of course, Uber defenders might...

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