Squabbling While GM Crashes

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DETROIT: After a bitter round of name-calling on Monday, General Motors and the United Auto Workers are back at the table. But these are negotiations in name only. "Both sides have dug in, and they're not budging," says TIME reporter Joseph Szczesny in Detroit. "The betting now is that this will last through July."

Not that either side lacks for incentive to soften its stance. GM is fast running out of parts to supply its assembly lines nationwide, and conservative estimates put the company's losses at $50 million a day. The workers stand to take a big financial hit themselves; if they do not return to work by June 26, they lose a week's worth of union-won "holiday pay" for the first half of GM's annual two-week plant shutdown, which begins June 29.

Yet none of those pressures seem to be getting the talks on track. "It's not even one or two sticking points, says Szczesny. "It's everything. They both consider themselves already pushed to the limit. And that doesn't leave much room for compromise."