This book is about my experiences at a, now closed, General Motors
metal casting plant in the Buffalo, New York area. It follows my
journey from apprenticeship training in a skilled trade, to
becoming a journeyman in the trade, to going back to school for my
college degree, and finally being promoted to supervisor of a
critical department in the plant.
When most people key the ignition switch or push the start
button, they really do not have any idea what is involved in the
engineering, technology, equipment, and human labor required to
produce a motor vehicle. Heavy manufacturing, especially casting
facilities, were and are dangerous places to work. I reluctantly
have given the reader examples of several instances of human
suffering which took place during my eighteen years of employment
as well as many stories from within that GM plant.
For the better part of three decades I carried the material for
this book with me and did nothing until our Government decided to
bailout GM and Chrysler. At that point I dusted off the attache
case and began this journey. You see, GM was not going to go out of
business but going into bankruptcy would mean revamping retiree pay
and medical benefits for the UAW and that was not going to happen.
Six decades of questionable management and union relations at the
corporate and plant levels had finally caught up with them.
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