He Seems Nice

Views

I couldn’t help noticing this tweet this evening from Vice President Pence, highlighting his and the President’s talk today with ‘victims’ of Obamacare.

As I noted earlier, while there were definitely trade offs with Obamacare and it was far from a panacea the idea that the law created a class of ‘victims’ is at best overstated and largely BS.

It got better when a guy on Twitter pointed out to me that Knox actually has his own write-up on Snopes.com.

Now, to be clear, he wasn’t debunked or caught lying about something. The Snopes write up was actually confirming that Knox was the author of a viral meme email that made the rounds back in December 2008. This was during the Bush-Obama transition when the fate of General Motors and the rest of the auto industry hung in the balance. GM President Troy Clarke had sent a letter to employees and others asking them to write and tell Congress to save GM.

Knox wrote a response to Clarke which was basically a tirade against the leeches and parasites who made up the GM workforce (and management too, for that matter but, well … mainly the workforce.) It shows Knox to be what policy specialists refer to as a “toxic right wing asshole.” I’m reprinting the whole thing below. But here are some highlights (emphasis added).

“You are both infected with the same entitlement mentality that has bred like cancerous germs in UAW halls for the last countless decades …”

“our factories have been filled with the worlds most overpaid, arrogant, ignorant and laziest entitlement minded ‘laborer’ …”

“I have called on Ford, GM, Chrysler, TRW, Delphi, Kelsey Hayes, American Axle and countless other automotive OEM’s and Tier ones for 3 decades now throughout the Midwest and what I’ve seen over the years in these union shops can only be described as disgusting …”

“how about the electricians who walk around the plants like lords in feudal times, making people wait on them for countless hours while they drag ass ¦so they can come in on the weekend and make double and triple time for a job they easily could have done within their normal 40 hour week…”

“Detroit and the United States need to pay for their sins…”

According to the White House “readout” released late Monday evening, Knox made an important contribution to the discussion …

Mr. Greg Knox of Ohio, the owner of Knox Machinery and Chairman of the Dayton Region Manufacturers Association. The businesses in Mr. Knox’s association have been significantly affected by Obamacare’s rising prices. Mr. Knox expressed optimism that President Trump will return free market principles to our Nation’s healthcare system, which will benefit consumers by increasing options and lowering costs.

Full letter reprinted here.

From Gregory Knox,

In response to your request to call legislators and ask for a bailout for the United States automakers please consider the following, and please also pass this onto Troy Clark, the president of General Motors North America for me.

You are both infected with the same entitlement mentality that has bred like cancerous germs in UAW halls for the last countless decades, and whose plague is now sweeping the nation, awaiting our new “messiah” to wave his magical wand and make all our problems go away, while at the same time allowing our once great nation to keep “living the dream”.

The dream is over!

The dream that we can ignore the consumer for years while management myopically focuses on its personal rewards packages at the same time that our factories have been filled with the worlds most overpaid, arrogant, ignorant and laziest entitlement minded “laborers” without paying the price for these atrocities, and that still the masses will line up to buy our products

Don’t tell me I’m wrong. Don’t accuse me of not knowing of what I speak. I have called on Ford, GM, Chrysler, TRW, Delphi, Kelsey Hayes, American Axle and countless other automotive OEM’s and Tier ones for 3 decades now throughout the Midwest and what I’ve seen over the years in these union shops can only be described as disgusting.

Mr Clark, the president of General Motors, states:

“There is widespread sentiment in this country, our government and especially in the media that the current crisis is completely the result of bad management. It is not.”

You’re right, it’s not JUST management, ¦how about the electricians who walk around the plants like lords in feudal times, making people wait on them for countless hours while they drag ass ¦so they can come in on the weekend and make double and triple time for a job they easily could have done within their normal 40 hour week.

How about the line workers who threaten newbies with all kinds of scare tactics for putting out too many parts on a shift and for being too productive (mustn’t expose the lazy bums who have been getting overpaid for decades for their horrific underproduction, must we?!?) Do you really not know about this stuff?!?

How about this great sentiment abridged from Mr. Clarke’s sad plea:

“over the last few years we have closed the quality and efficiency gaps with our competitors.”

What the hell has Detroit been doing for the last 40 years?!?

Did we really JUST wake up to the gaps in quality and efficiency between us and them?

The K car vs. the Accord?

The Pinto vs. the Civic?!?

Do I need to go on?

We are living through the inevitable outcome of the actions of the United States auto industry for decades.

Time to pay for your sins, Detroit.

I attended an economic summit last week where a brilliant economist, Alan Beaulieu surprised the crowd when he said he would not have given the banks a penny of “bailout money”. Yes, he said, this would cause short term problems, but despite what people like George Bush and Troy Clark would have us believe, the sun would in fact rise the next day and something else would happen where there had been greedy and sloppy banks, new efficient ones would pop up. That is how a free market system works. It does work if we would let it work.

But for some reason we are now deciding that the rest of the world is right and that capitalism doesn’t work that we need the government to step in and “save us”. Save us, hell! We’re nationalizing and unfortunately too many of this once fine nations citizens don’t even have a clue that this is what’s really happening but they sure can tell you the stats on their favorite sports teams. Yeah, THAT’S important!

Does it occur to ANYONE that the “competition” has been producing vehicles, EXTREMELY PROFITABLY, for decades now in this country?…

How can that be???

Let’s see:

Fuel efficient…

Listening to customers…

Investing in the proper tooling and automation for the long haul…

Not being too complacent or arrogant to listen to Dr W Edwards Deming 4
decades ago…

Ever increased productivity through quality, lean and six sigma plans…

Treating vendors like strategic partners, rather than like “the enemy”…

Efficient front and back offices….

Non union environment!

Again, I could go on and on, but I really wouldn’t be telling anyone
anything they really don’t already know in their hearts.

I have six children, so I am not unfamiliar with the concept of wanting someone to bail you out of a mess that you have gotten yourself into. My children do this on a weekly, if not daily basis, as I did at their age. I do for them what my parents did for me (one of their greatest gifts, by the way), I make them stand on their own two feet and accept the consequences of their actions and work them through.

Radical concept, huh?

Am I there for them in the wings? Of course, but only until such time as they need to be fully on their own as adults.

I don’t want to oversimplify a complex situation, but there certainly are unmistakable parallels here between the proper role of parenting and government.

Detroit and the United States need to pay for their sins.

Bad news people, it’s coming whether we like it or not.

The newly elected Messiah really doesn’t have a magic wand big enough to “make it all go away” I laughed as I heard Obama “reeling it back in” almost immediately after the vote count was tallied. We might not do it in a year or in four. Where was that kind of talk when he was RUNNING for the office?

Stop trying to put off the inevitable.

That house in Florida really isn’t worth $750,000.

People who jump across a border really don’t deserve free health care benefits.

That job driving that forklift for the big 3 really isn’t worth $85,000 a
year.

We really shouldn’t allow Wal-Mart to stock their shelves with products acquired from a country that unfairly manipulates their currency and has the most atrocious human rights infractions on the face of the globe.

That couple whose combined income is less than $50,000 really shouldn’t be living in that $485,000 home!

Let the market correct itself people. It will. Yes it will be painful,
but it’s gonna be painful either way, and the bright side of my proposal is that on the other side of it is a nation that appreciates what is has and doesn’t live beyond its means. Gets back to basics, and redevelops the work ethic that made it the greatest nation in the history of the world and probably turns back to God.

Sorry don’t cut my head off, I’m just the messenger sharing with you the
“bad news”.

Gregory J Knox
President
Knox Machinery, Inc.
Franklin, Ohio 45005

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.
LIKE US ON FACEBOOK