Friday, July 07, 2006

Pillowtex: Adding Insult to Injury

According to an AP report in The Charlotte Observer, the settlement with Pillowtex employees will be adding insult to injury. It is quite a bit smaller than originally anticipated. Workers had anticipated a pre-tax amount of about $2000 and since most workers were in lower tax brackets (not too many millionaires working the line) they probably anticipated checks with only a few hundred withheld from that amount. Instead, they will be receiving a little more than $1200.

Some of the nearly 4000 who lost their jobs when Pillowtex closed are still unemployed and some are underemployed, working jobs that pay less and have fewer benefits. I'm sure many were counting on every penny of that settlement to help make ends meet or to pay off debt incurred after the mill closed.

While there were many reasons that Pillowtex failed and closed its doors in 2003, free trade agreements have caused a huge problem for the industry as a whole.

Robin Hayes' broken promise and his vote for CAFTA in 2005 can't be blamed, but I imagine that many of these workers will make a connection between Hayes' broken promises and what they've had to endure. I'm sure many can't imagine that after what happened to Pillowtex, Hayes would vote to make matters worse in an area that once thrived because of the textiles industry.

So, why did Pillowtex workers receive smaller checks? Well, it's the damndest thing. It seems that under this Republican congress and this Republican White House their taxes were higher than anticipated.
Pillowtex had to withhold more taxes than anticipated because of federal law, said Mark Indelicato, who worked on the settlement for a New York law firm representing Pillowtex creditors.
Imagine that! Now we can call them the "Tax, Borrow and Spend Republicans." That has a nice ring, doesn't it?

16 Comments:

Anonymous Kevster said...

Southern Dem:

Punch them in the mouth with the truth. This is a failed administration, most of all to the citizens of North Carolina. This criminal cabal has sacrificed our rights and at the same time made us less safe and the scorn of the world..

Unilateralist foreign policy: Not so much.

Elect Democrats now.

Kissell in the 8th-the change starts now!

10:27 PM, July 07, 2006  
Blogger B. Muse said...

I couldn't agree with you more. I won't back down. Our futures are far too important to leave in the hands of Republicans. They've failed at every turn.

Thank you for your comment.

12:09 AM, July 08, 2006  
Blogger Justin Thibault said...

My parents run a small manufacturing firm in Kannapolis - so, let's cut through the neo-Bolshevik rhetoric with a few facts.

I suggest you go back into the Charlotte Observer archives and you'll find that the Pillowtex management had much more to do with it's demise than Free Trade did.

Also, union intervention preceded the fall of Pillowtex; but the UNITE people set world land speed records leaving Kannapolis. I can remember driving by the empty UNTIE office with its overgrown weeds and the unkept exterior as a reminder of how feckless modern unions are - lots of talk and a little action. That didn't stop the UNTIE President from writing op-eds from his cushy New York office about what local leaders in Cabarrus County needed to do.

Finally, settlements take time and the level of withholding has to take into account tax cuts NOT being made permanent - does Larry Kissel support that?

9:19 AM, July 08, 2006  
Blogger Justin Thibault said...

Oh and to put things a little more simply for you.

Democrats = Mills
Republicans = Bio-Tech Campus

Where would you rather work?

9:20 AM, July 08, 2006  
Anonymous Justin's Dad said...

Sorry about little J. We ran out of Ridlin this morning in the Thibault household.

The Bio-Tech campus is going to be GREAT though! I hear they're specifically hiring laid off mill workers to be the research scientists.

Ha. Ha.

4:15 PM, July 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd like a job at NASA, but I've worked a manuel labor job for over a decade and only have a high school education. Am I qualified?

12:06 AM, July 09, 2006  
Blogger B. Muse said...

Justin, Wow...neo-Bolshevik? Gee, and all this time I thought I was just speaking the truth.

I'm happy for your parents. I do hope their luck continues and I'm sure it's combined with a great deal of skill.

I never said that Pillowtex management didn't carry some blame, now did I? Actually, I said there were many reasons why the company had to close its doors. I see reading comprehension isn't one of your strengths, but I won't keep repeating myself if you aren't willing to read thoroughly.

Now....as far as the tax cuts go. First and foremost that had nothing to do with the huge differential in the checks. Nothing whatsoever. It was a flat 25% rate that was required by federal law for this type of settlement - that was on top of the 14% or so combined soc.sec/medicare/state taxes that were withheld. Damn, those facts are pesky little buggers aren't they, Justin?

Also. If you are really pissed off about Bush's tax cuts getting renewed(the ones that no intelligent, respected economist on the PLANET thinks are good for our economy) then you can just take your anger out on your WORTHLESS REPUBLICAN MAJORITY IN WASHINGTON.

It's their fault. They have a majority in both houses of congress. They can do whatever the hell they please, so if you aren't happy about legislation coming out of Washington blame it on your own precious party. They are at fault.

Bio-tech campus.....isn't that nice. It's going to employ upwards of 5000 eventually....some day.....maybe.

You can't feed a family on eventually...some day....maybe.

Democrats= grounded in reality, Republicans= lost in space

12:34 AM, July 09, 2006  
Blogger Lance McCord said...

Union involvement. Preceeded the fall of Pillowtex. Must have caused it, somehow. Got it.

Brushed my teeth. The morning that I got that speeding ticket. Must have caused it, somehow.

The unions in NC have long since been broken. They don't have the clout around here to ruin a birthday party.

8:14 AM, July 09, 2006  
Anonymous anglico said...

Republicans = biotech campus?

Do you mean the same Republicans who are against stem-cell research?
The same Republicans who tried to scuttle the Research Triangle Park when it was first conceived?
The same Republicans who say the science on global warming is a liberal plot?
The same Republicans who want to promote creationism in schools?
The same Republicans who support abstinence only sex education while there's an epidemic of STDs among teen girls who 'take the pledge'?
The same Republicans who are flushing a trillion dollars on a lie in Iraq?

You really are full of it.

8:37 AM, July 09, 2006  
Blogger Justin Thibault said...

Republicans = biotech campus?

'friad so. The local delegation, mainly State Sen. Fletcher Hartsell, were instrumental in working with Murdock to getting the biotech campus here. Darrell Hinnant, a Republican City Councilman, has been in the middle of the implementation.

You'll be hard pressed to find a liberal Democrat in the middle of all of that. They are to busy using Pillowtex closing to score votes

Of course, making broad generalizations based on media stereotypes is easier than considering the facts.

Don't believe me? Give me the names of any liberal Democrats that have done anything but piggyback on the local Republican efforts.

6:41 AM, July 10, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Democrats = low paying jobs today
Republicans = Future careers for the next generation

It is nice that you want to keep Kannapolis a dirty mill town. It sucks that those people lost their jobs, today is bad but the future looks good. Kannapolis has the potential to be one of the shining stars in the state. The bio-tech project has the potential to improve the school systems, create better land value, import new service jobs and revive a dieing community. Look what has happened in last 6 months since the announcement, a satellite campus for UNCC, a new venue for the arts being built, and a major development project announced with retail and residential

But this flies in the face of the Dems “Free Fish policy”- love us we give you free fish. While the Republicans motto of “teaching a man to fish” it is difficult and has sacrifices it also is rewarding and beneficial. Change sucks, but the results can be rewarding. Dems are so good at cursing the lemons while Drinking the Repubs lemon-aid.

Can’t win with Yellow.

10:41 AM, July 10, 2006  
Blogger B. Muse said...

I guess if you want to climb over the backs of others...that's up to you. So taking the jobs of 4000 people was part of the overall plan? What's the plan for retraining these folks for the biotech industry? Ahh...I didn't think you'd figured that part out yet. I guess you realize that few of the jobs will be filled by people who actually live in Kannapolis now. Well...beyond custodial and food service. Last I checked Kannapolis was a little short on scientists.

When did Republicans start loving science so much? Do you actually know what biotech research is? Are you prepared to support it wholeheartedly? Do you support stem cell research or is that too cutting edge?

I can't tell you how hilarious it is to read a Republican celebrating their tax dollars being spent on an arts facility.

We're borrowing billions a day from China. Borrow and spend, borrow and spend. Republicans aren't building anything we can call our own. It's all owned by China. That's some expensive lemonade you folks are serving.

8:46 PM, July 10, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice recycled argument with China owns everything …… I remember that from the Japans owns everything days (ie Japan buys the sears tower in early eights) its a typical sky is falling tactic.

No, there was no plan. Were not socialist – Face it the free market closed the mills. You can blame CAFTA, the senate, and Mr. Rodgers for that matter but the Free Market still is the major stock holder in the game. So there was no plan, even though the democrats want to control everything and tell companies what do and how do it – they cant we not socialist

Are the laid off mill workers going to be scientist? Of course not and this type of argument lacks understanding of economics. For every new job created in a local economy filled by an “imported worker” creates two new jobs in the local economy. It takes time but Kannapolis will rebuild because of this opportunity.

Do republicans support Bio-Tech – well two of the biggest Bio-Tech guys in the country are Republicans one is Murdock the other is DeVos (running for Gov in MI right now). Not all Bio-tech is stem cell most of it is in food and plant research. To say republics don’t like science is just an inane argument lacking facts or based in misinterpretation of one very small aspect of a huge field – the counter to such a small minded argument would be “yes” but Dems don’t like science either cause they didn’t support “star wars”………

“I can't tell you how hilarious it is to read a Republican celebrating their tax dollars being spent on an arts facility” - Again this is incorrect and a misinterpretation of fact (which I am finding as a consistency in this blog), tax dollars were not spent. Murdock renovated a new space for Piedmont Dance Conservatory and is building a performance hall as part biotech development – with his own money (aka Free Market)

And on a final note – when you say Republicans aren’t building anything I say of course not that would be socialism, the free market builds things not the Government.

-Cant win with yellow.

10:12 AM, July 11, 2006  
Blogger B. Muse said...

It is actually painful to read your comment and try to translate it into English. However, I will try.

It isn't a recycled argument. Explain, if you can, why it is OK for the U.S. to borrow billions a day from China. Then explain what free market forces will save us if they "call the note" so to speak.

You can't. I know you can't because the Republicans haven't put out those talking points yet.

You can't win with liars and weak party puppets like Hayes.

12:32 PM, July 11, 2006  
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