Bulldozing the U.A.W.

Caterpillar hands its unionized workers a crushing defeat

CATERPILLAR'S 12,600 STRIKING WORKERS IN PEOria, Ill., must have felt last week as if one of the company's mammoth earthmovers had just rolled over them. Despite the United Auto Workers' $800 million war chest (which could have provided up to $60,000 in benefits for every family on the picket line), the five-month-long siege suddenly collapsed. The union leadership failed to gain a single demand on wage and medical-care issues. The employees had to wait to be summoned back to work, while the company considered eliminating more than a thousand jobs. Many U.A.W. members seemed as bitter over the terms of their...

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