Class Warfare

It’d be nice if we, you know, had some:

DETROIT – Ford Motor Co.’s new chief executive will get an annual base salary of $2 million and an immediate payout of $18.5 million for taking the job, the company said Friday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Alan Mulally, who joined Ford from Boeing Co., where he headed the company’s commercial jet-building division, is getting a $7.5 million hiring bonus. On top of that, Ford will pay him $11 million to offset forfeited performance and stock option awards from Boeing.

Ford also granted Mulally 4 million stock options and 600,000 restricted stock units.

At Boeing, Mulally’s 2005 compensation totaled $9.9 million, including a base salary of $825,000 and a $736,000 bonus. Most of the total came from long-term incentive payouts.

Because that’s just disgusting in light of this:

More Local 36 members will be idled in the next couple of months as the company ends production of the fl ashy Ford GT, scheduled to halt by Halloween.

“Right now, they’re telling us our idle date will be the second quarter of ’07,” Berry said as the Labor Day parade formed on Woodward Avenue more than two miles north of Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit.

“People are just waiting,” added Berry, who said most of the workers remaining at Wixom have spent 20 to 25 years working for Ford.

Berry said workers know that employees have done all they could to keep the operation going.

“It wasn’t any one thing. It was just Ford in general. It wasn’t anything the plant did,” said Berry, noting that the plant – by any measure – had been very successful over the years. “It made lots of money for Ford.”

And before I get any more e-mails calling me a commie (which, please, wouldja just update your insults, because the 80s called, and even they think that stuff’s dated) I’m not yelling “down with capitalism” over here. I’m not talking about dismantling our economic system.

What I am talking about is our society and what we think of as “moral,” what we think of as virtuous and what we think of as shameful, and I’m through tired and out the other side when it comes to defining morals by our genitals while shit like this isn’t even up for discussion.

There has always been tension between business owners and their employees, between those who run the company and those who keep the company running. But lately it seems like there’s just no talk at all about a level of greed that would make Gordon Gecko blush, and it’d be nice if the Democratic Party recognized that its most loyal members are getting screwed on an almost-daily basis and somebody like Mullaly is getting a good bonus, because if we really want to win back government, we have to start talking about the stuff that actually matters.

People don’t just come to the conclusion that something’s important all on their own. Not usually. For decades now they’ve been told that gay sex is some kind of threat to them, that flag burning is undermining our country, that abortion is the most pressing issue legislators and court justices can take up. And they’ve believed it because from the first inch of sun over the horizon in the morning to the last ray of light in the evening, Republicans have been in their faces, yelling about it at the top of their lungs, telling them that.

We sit over here, and we wonder why nobody thinks about health care, why nobody votes with us on our issues. We wait for people to wake up, and realize that we’re the party for them because we care about all these good things, because we’ll make their lives better as opposed to making themfeel better, but people go out on election day and they vote for things that are important to them because for months they’ve been told about those things, and told why.

Which is why the minimum wage issue made me so happy when Dems started pushing it. I’d love some class warfare, myself. I’d love anything approaching a fair fight. Up till now, it’s been pretty much class carpet-bombing, while we cower in the bunker and hope they don’t hit too close to home.