"4: If you look at the steel companies that went under at the time, all of them were unionized," he said. "I'm not saying this was the only factor -- these firms faced other headwinds such as cheap labor and a strong dollar ... but the unions held them back."
"5: For Joe Soptic, who worked at the plant for 28 years, that meant a loss of $283 per month, about 22 percent of his pension."
"6: After nearly 30 years as a steelworker, Joe Soptic found a job as a school custodian. The $24,000 salary was roughly one-third of his former pay"
#4 Seems strange. Unionized steel companies all went bankrupt when faced with increased foregin competition, but NOT non-unionized? Let's read below to see if we can solve the mystery.
Well let's see here. For #5, Joe Soptic, he lost $283/month in his pension, which was a 22% decrease. So, what was it before? 22% of x = $283, so x=a monthly pension of $1286. I checked what the AVERAGE pension was for private sector workers here: it's $641 (avg pension of $7692/year). So these guys are getting DOUBLE (!!) the pension of the average private-sector worker. Well how about their wages?
For #6: Joe was making $24k, which was 1/3 of his former pay. That means he was making $72,000 as a steelworker. How does that compare? I checked here at the BLS. Result? Supervisors at steel mills get $28/hr, about $44,000 / year. Really? These guys are making $72,000 a year when the HIGHEST PAID in the steel industry is $44,000 / year.
So, John Hawkins in his blog is railing on Romney as the bailout king. He should REALLY be THANKING Romney for trying to turn GS Technologies around and save the company, by working for 10 years with little to show for it, because HIGH UNION WAGES AND PENSIONS ballooned the company's debt levels and made them UN-prepared to face competition.
That should be the REAL story; that Bain, that actually made "an average annual return on investment of 88 percent between its founding in 1984 and the end of 1999" (88% return? Great job, Mitt!) tried to help out GS."