It's unfortunate that the U.S. government and 91 workers at the General Electric Ohio Lamp Plant in Warren proved business tycoon Maurice Taylor correct in his assessment of most union workers.
Taylor, who purchased longtime Trumbull County business staples American Welding and Denman Tire, responded tersely to French Industry Minister Arnaud Montebourg after the government there asked him to buy a Goodyear tire factory that is closing and putting 1,000 workers out of their jobs north of Paris.
''How stupid do you think we are?'' Taylor wrote. ''I have visited that factory a couple of times. The French workforce gets paid high wages, but works only three hours. They get one hour for breaks and lunch, talk for three and work for three hours.''
Taylor, the owner of American tire manufacturer Titan, said soon France will stop producing tires and his company would export them from China and India to France.
He also said, ''The U.S. government is not much better than the French. Titan had to pay millions to Washington lawyers to sue the Chinese tire companies because of their subsidizing. Titan won. The government collects the duties.''
The U.S. government also established rules to eliminate incandescent light bulbs in favor of more efficient ones. As a result, most or all light bulb production is being shipped overseas. The GE plant in Warren is scheduled to shut down at the beginning of 2014.
Many union workers there voted to make concessions in exchange for keeping the plant open and preserving their jobs. They were outvoted by their peers