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THE WESTFALL PAPERS

FLINT BLUE-COLLAR ACTIVISTS 1976

 

 

 Flint Auto Activists. Initial Group "1976"....


Back row L-R Wayne Gillette, John Long, Bill Gillett, Russ Williams, Ron Castleman

Front  row L-R Treasurer Jim Gillett, Photographer Bernie Lowthian,  Vice-chairman David Lustig,  Chairman Mike Westfall

 

 

 

YESTERDAY’S FIGHT AGAINST TODAY’S MIDDLE - CLASS DECLINE

 

 

The last forty years have been a very difficult time for America’s middle-class. This site represents the efforts of the Flint based workers who were on the cutting edge and at the forefront sounding an alarm against this decline.

 



  

The last forty years have been a very difficult time for America’s middle-class. This site represents the efforts of the Flint based workers who were on the cutting edge and at the forefront sounding an alarm against this decline.


 


    Today, life has never been better for the financial industry, big business, corporate bosses, top union officials and America’s politicians. Life, however, has gotten very hard for a new generation of American working families who have been targeted to accept a reduced standard of living as their jobs, wages, benefits, pensions and middle-class status have been unjustly slashed. 


    In the last century, the CEO’s of American based multi-national corporations began using new restructuring strategies to take larger pieces of the economic pie at the worker’s expense. This has led to an extremely stagnated economy, bewildered political leaders and a profoundly damaged nation. 


     The blueprint for this restructuring can be found in the auto industry where the once good wages and benefits would set the benchmark for middle-income compensation across the board in our nation. Because of this, jobs were plentiful, our communities’ small businesses thrived and American families prospered above other nations. In the 1970s, the auto industry was America’s premier manufacturing industry and one out of six American jobs were auto related. G.M. was America’s largest automaker and Flint, Michigan was a key area because it contained the world’s largest concentration of GM workers and was the founding home of both GM and the UAW.


    A Flint group of in-the-trench auto assembly line workers led by activist Mike Westfall began raising red flags in 1976 on the vast amounts of new automation entering the workforce because of its negative impact on jobs. Westfall organized his first of several advocate groups and, while the establishment was silent, these groups quickly expanded as they began addressing total corporate restructuring and all of its elements, which also included foreign sourcing, downsizing, multi-national worker exploitation, corporate pollution and other issues. No one else was doing this.


Some of Westfall’s groups ranged in size to over six hundred members and some of the rallies they were involved in contained thousands of people. They organized and spoke out on how this corporate restructuring was being directed with little regard for national loyalty or social responsibility. Their efforts expanded from Flint to other industrial cities and states.


    Because Westfall loudly questioned corporate, governmental and union authority, as evidenced by the very articles on this site, their work was often downplayed and misrepresented by the indifferent and unaffected establishment. They called Westfall a maverick.


    Westfall’s groups boldly asserted that this transfer of wealth, from workers to the upper class would damage our nation and dismantle the American dream for working people. Westfall and his groups spoke out regularly on TV, radio and in the written media on how this transfer of wealth and disregard for working families would domino into all industries across America in the decades to come, as it has today. As members of the UAW, they worked as separately as possible from the international union leadership as they also fought concessions, corporate property tax reductions at the expense of communities, apartheid and other social issues. 


    Westfall led large demonstrations, debated corporate C.E.O.s at stockholders’ meetings and conducted ongoing media events. For years as chairman, he wrote national newsletters and served on the boards of various national organizations. He was elected chairman of the controlling union caucus in power at GM Flint Truck and Bus Assembly, the largest truck assembly plant in the world at that time with 7,200 workers. In 1990, both GM and the International UAW enlisted Westfall to write critical contractual programs to save thousands of younger workers who were slotted for elimination, which he successfully did.


     The media called Westfall’s groups rebels because they dared to speak out when leaders remained silent. Top leaders from that time should be severely criticized for not listening closer to them, given how accurate they were. The position labor finds itself in today and America’s ongoing ailing state of the economy is largely caused from the issues Westfall’s groups addressed, and those leaders ignored.


    Over the years, it was important that Westfall remain blue-collar to keep his autonomy, so he declined job offers including working with Ralph Nader in Washington D.C., an appointment at Solidarity House in Detroit, an appointment as labor head of education for GM Truck & Bus Flint Assembly and several other jobs.  Westfall retired in 1994 after working for General Motors for 30 years. For the next 15 years he continued his writing on labor, social and faith issues. 


    Today, the large volume of the Westfall group’s work has been archived at some of America’s most prestigious libraries, used in films, documented in best selling books, copied in educational text and viewed around the world on the Internet.





   

THE WESTFALL PAPERS

6/2009- WESTFALL..  "MAQUILADORA!" AMERICAN exported slavery to foreign workers exploited with shamefully low wages and working conditions. then used as unfair competitive examples of how american workers are under worked and overpaid in and effort to reduce the worlds working class to the lowest common denominator . . . . . (MORE)


4/2009 WESTFALL..  - TOXIC TIME BOMB .. THE REAL LEGACY COST OF THE AUTO INDUSTRY AMERICA’S DEEP RECESSION HAS EXACERBATED ISSUES WITHIN PROBLEMATIC INDUSTRIES, AND THERE ARE THOSE LOOKING FOR A SCAPEGOAT. . . (MORE)


1987 - mIKE wESTFALL.. HISTORIC U.A.W. 50TH ANNIVERSARY / ANTI- CONCESSION RALLY PART A WE SEE OUR PLANTS CLOSING. WE SEE THE DEVASTATION IN OUR FAMILIES FACES. FOR THOSE WHO FOLLOW IT MAY NOT GET BETTER IT MAY GET SIGNIFICANTLY WORSE. . . (MORE)

1987 - VICTOR REUTHER.. HISTORIC U.A.W. 50TH ANNIVERSARY / ANTI-CONCESSION RALLY /PART B IF THERE IS ANYTHING THAT WOULD CAUSE WALTER REUTHER TO ROLE over IN HIS GRAVE ITS THE THOUGHT THAT General motors IS GETTING AWAY WITH WHAT THEY ARE DOING TODAY. .. (MORE)

12/1990 - MICHAEL MOORE'S SECRET PHIL DONAHUE, RALPH NADER AND the national MEDIA. flint was the founding home of both general motors and the united auto workers. general motors was america's premier manufacturer and the largest concentration of gm workers was in flint. What is the valid Flint story of thirty years ago? . .(MORE)

1987 - JERRY TUCKER.. HISTORIC..  U.A.W. 50TH ANNIVERSARY / ANTI-CONCESSION RALLY PART C . . .(MORE)


5/2009 WESTFALL..  - CANCER IN AUTO TOWN THERE are horrific costs eminating from the irresponsible dumping of corporate toxic wastes and the poisening of communities and workers . . (MORE)


 7/1985 - WESTFALL / RALPH NADER RADIO INTERVIEW THIS IS " NIGHT LINE”. OUR GUESTS TONIGHT ARE MIKE WESTFALL AND RALPH NADER. THEY WILL BE SPEAKING ON G.M. AND TAXES. G.M. SAYS THEY HAVE BEEN UNFAIRLY TAXED AND THEY WANT TAX RELIEF. SHOULD THEY GET IT? . . .(MORE)

3/1990 - EARLY RETIREMENT PILOT PROPOSAL FOR TWO YEARS BEGINNING IN 1988 THE UAW AND GM SET MICHAEL WESTFALL UP IN AN OFFSITE OFFICE COMPLEX, WHICH GM HAD PURCHASED FOR SPECIAL PROJECTS. . . (MORE)

6/1981 -wESTFALL.. 18 NATION WORLD COUNCIL MEETING DEARBORN- DELEGATES FROM UNIONS REPRESENTING GENERAL MOTORS WORKERS AROUND THE WORLD WERE GATHERING HERE TODAY TO DISCUSS AN INTERNATIONAL UNION RESPONSE TO WHAT THEY CALL GM’S WORLD STRATEGY..(MORE)

10/1987 - AMERICA'S MINORITY SITUATION CORPORATE AMERICA’S RACE TO RESTRUCTURE IS BEING GRIEVOUSLY FELT BY THE WORKING CLASS. THE UPSWING IN THE ECONOMY IS TRANSLATING INTO SOME WORKERS GOING BACK TO WORK BUT NOT IN THE NUMBERS THAT WERE ONCE THERE. . . (MORE)

8/2007 - HISTORIC UAW LEADER SPEAKS OUT FOR RETIREES & WORKERS . WHITEY HALE WAS THE PRESIDENT OF UAW LOCAL 326 IN FLINT, MICHIGAN. the general motors plating factory that he represented had a cancer rate that was twice the national average. it has been torn down. whitey was an exceptional labor leader and hero who fought for both workers and RETIREES. (MORE)

3/2009 - RESPECTED UAW SATURN PRESIDENT SPEAKS OUT ON SHOCKING AUTO FACTORY CANCER It is totally documented that many important Industrial factories have been proven to be mortally unhealthy for the workers and communities in which they are located . . . (MORE)

1985 -  PITTSBURGH ECONOMic association today's corporate restructuring REVOLUTION is destined to destroy america's middle-class and radically slash jobs for our next generation in the twenty-first century . . (MORE) 

3/1984 - FLORIDA TREND MAGAZINE BY THE TIME MIKE WESTFALL WALKED INTO DETROIT’S COBO HALL ONE MORNING LAST WINTER, HE HAD ALREADY PUT IN A FULL, PREDAWN SHIFT AT THE CHEVY TRUCK PLANT IN FLINT, MICHIGAN …(MORE)

 4/2009 - BETRAYED AUTO RETIREES, BLUE COLLAR AND WHITE COLLAR WHAT IS THE TRUE DEFINITION OF THE SO-CALLED LEGACY COST IN THE AUTO INDUSTRY, AND WHO IS REALLY PICKING UP THE. . . (MORE)

2008 - THE DESTRUCTION OF UAW PRESIDENT WALTER REUTHER’S UNION PAST UAW PRESIDENT AND FOUNDING FATHER, WALTER REUTHER, WAS A STRONG PRINCIPLED LABOR LEADER OF VISION. WALTER HAD A BACKBONE AND REFUSED TO BECOME A CORPORATE PUPPET. . . (MORE)

7/1990 - OUT OF CONTROL AMERICAN HEALTH CARE  america’s elected bureaucrats are like blind sided deer caught in the headlights. their lack of leadership in DEALING WITH rediculously over priced HEALTH CARE COSTS, questionable QUALITY AND unfair ACCESSIBILITY IS disasterously irresponsible. it has the potential of bringing down our entire economic system. .  (MORE)

1986 - GM AND LIBERAL ARTS  IN DECEMBER’S MICHIGAN TODAY ROGER SMITH USED THE SUBJECT OF LIBERAL ARTS AS THE VEHICLE TO MAKE SOME TYPICAL GENERAL MOTORS PUBLIC RELATION’S COMMENTS ON GM'S RESTRUCTURING. . . (MORE)  

7/2009 - BILLY DURANT'S INCOMPETENT AND BANKRUPT GENERAL MOTORS UNCLE SAM HAS ALLOCATED $50 BILLION TO FIX GM AND WILL END UP OWNING 60% OF IT. . . (MORE 

6/2009 - THE REAL STORY ABOUT FLINT IT IS DISTRESSING THAT THE IMPORTANT FLINT STORY WOULD BE REDUCED TO A CARNIVAL SIDESHOW. . .  (MORE)  

 6/2007 - UAW OFFICIALS' BETRAYAL OF MEMBERS "2007" IN AMERICA THE RICH ARE GETTING RICHER, THE POOR ARE GETTING POORER AND OUR MIDDLE CLASS. . . (MORE) 

10/2005 - UAW BLACK OCTOBER 2005  PENSIONS & RETIREMENT BENEFITS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED SACRED & "OFF LIMITS" THROUGHOUT RETIREE'S GOLDEN . . . (MORE) 

2005 NATIONAL HEALTH INSURANCE...NOW! AMERICA NEEDS NATIONAL HEALTH INSURANCE FOR ALL IT'S PEOPLE.  . . . (MORE)  

8/1990 - AMERICA'S HEALTHCARE OUR HEALTH CARE SYSTEM HAS BECOME A BASKET CASE AND IS WASTING BILLIONS OF DOLLARS YEARLY FOR INEFFICIENT HEALTHCARE THAT IS ADVERSELY AFFECTING OUR INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION. . . (MORE)   

 7/1986 - THE FALLOUT FROM THE CLOUDS OF RECESSION  AMERICAN LABOR IS NOW EXPERIENCING POSSIBLY THE MOST DIFFICULT PERIOD IN ITS HISTORY. BECAUSE OF THE CONCESSION AFTERMATH AND DUE TO . . . (MORE)   

7/1985 - THINGS CHANGING AND NOT FOR THE BETTER SIGNIFICANT AUTOMOTIVE CHANGES ARE OCCURRING IN THE GENERAL MOTORS TOWN OF FLINT WE SEE IT WITH GM'S RACE TO EXPORT SO MANY OF OUR DOMESTIC JOBS TO FOREIGN WORKERS. WHO IN MANY CASES ARE BEING EXPLOITED WITH LOW WAGES. . .(MORE)   

 9/1984 - CONTENT LEGISLATION  IN 1974, THE JAPANESE ONLY HAD ABOUT 6.7% OF THE AMERICAN AUTO MARKET. IN 1982 FOREIGN CAR SALES SHOT UP TO AN AMAZING 27.8%. . . (MORE) 

6/1982  TECHNOLOGY CURSE OR PROMISE  WE ARE ENTERING THE DAWN OF A NEW AGE IN INDUSTRY AND NEW TECHNOLOGIES ARE REVOLUTIONIZING EVERY SECTOR OF OUR PRODUCTION AND OFFICE ECONOMY...(MORE) 

6/1981 - NATIONAL TECH REPORT  THE AUTO COMPANIES ARE PUTTING UP THE LARGEST SMOKE SCREEN IN AUTOMOTIVE HISTORY. THEY ARE FEVERISHLY TRYING TO COVER UP THE FACT THAT THEY ARE ELIMINATING AS MANY OF OUR JOBS AS POSSIBLE THROUGH TECHNOLOGY, DOWNSIZING, AND THE WORLD CAR...(MORE)  

6/2009 - HE'S A REBEL: DARLENE LOVE  / - ELVIS PRESLEY, PHIL SPECTOR, TOM JONES, RONETTES, RIGHTEOUS BROTHERS, BEACH BOYS, TINA TURNER, DIONNE WARWICK, JACKIE WILSON, . . (MORE) 

2/2008 - "BUNK" TO RALPH NADER'S 2008 POLITICAL CRITICS! - RALPH NADER IS ONE OF THE FEW PEOPLE EVER BORN IN AMERICA WHO DESERVES. . .(MORE) 

2/2007 - FATHER GEORGE SCHULTZE INTERVIEW - CATHOLIC LATINOS. . .FR. GEORGE E. SCHULTZE, SJ, IS THE AUTHOR OF THE NEW BOOK TITLED STRANGERS IN A FOREIGN LAND. . . (MORE)  

2/2007 - MARTIN BARILLAS INTERVIEW - WELL RESPECTED MARTIN BARILLAS HAS BEEN A DIPLOMAT AND HUMAN RIGHTS OBSERVER IN EUROPE, LATIN AMERICA. . . (MORE)

6/2005 - AMERICA'S BETRAYED BABY BOOMERS  - AMERICA'S RETIREES ARE BEING SHORT CHANGED AND TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF. HOW ARE OUR BOOMERS BEING TREATED IN THEIR GOLDEN YEARS? THEY ARE BEING BETRAYED! . . (MORE) 

5/2007 - DAVID T. HARDY INTERVIEW - DAVID T. HARDY IS A TUCSON, ARIZONA ATTORNEY AND AN ACCOMPLISHED BEST SELLING AUTHOR. . . (MORE)   

4/2007 -  AMERICA - THERE ARE CONSERVATIVES WHO BELIEVE THAT WE SHOULD NOT ADDRESS THE PEOPLE OR ACTIONS . . . (MORE)


3/2009 - MIKE WESTFALL'S CHAPTER IN BIOGRAPHY - IT IS FASCINATING THAT MR. MOORE, WHO HAS A NOTORIOUS REPUTATION FOR BEING THE DREADED BUSHWHACKER, SHOULD FEEL SO THREATENED BY ME. . . (MORE) 

4/2007 - WESTFALL INTERVIEWED ON CHICAGO RADIO BY FRANK SALVATO - THE NEW MEDIA JOURNAL RADIO SHOW CHICAGO, ILLINOIS. . . . (MORE) 



   

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MATERIAL PRINTED IN INTERNATIONAL EDUCATIONAL TEXTBOOKS

Book On Moore

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Mike Westfall / Ralph Nader

FR. GEORGE SCHULTZE, SJ / MICHAEL WESTFALL INTERVI
FATHER GEORGE SCHULTZE,SJ INTERVIEW

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Mike Westfall / Michael Moore... Bio. by Roger Rapoport

FOUNDING GROUP MEMBER
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BERNIE LOWTHIAN EDITOR OF HISTORIC LABOR PAPERS



.. ARCHIVED LABOR HISTORY
.. INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM
.. SOCIAL ACTIVISM

CONTACT  


... CLICK ON ICONS BELOW ...
ARCHIVED WESTFALL LABOR PAPERS
ARCHIVES @ UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN - FLINT FRANCES WILLSON THOMPSON LIBRARY

Cornell University
AUDIO-VISUAL LABOR COLLECTION @ CORNELL UNIVERSITY, NEW YORK

REACHING OVER 1.5 MILLION PER MONTH
GM's Environmental Shame
Corporate Pollution by Mike Westfall / Edited By Pulitzer Prize Nominated Author Edwin Black

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Maquiladora! Multinational Slavery

America's Toxic Timebomb
America's Toxic Timebomb

The Poisoning of America by Industrial Pollution
Poisonous Industrial Pollution

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WRITINGS @ KHEEL CENTER, CORNELL UNIVERSITY, NEW YORK

Cornell University
PHOTO COLLECTION @CORNELL UNIVERSITY, NEW YORK

ARCHIVES @ THE WALTER REUTHER
ARCHIVES @ THE WALTER P. REUTHER LIBRARY, DETROIT

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Alicia Patterson Foundation's Award Winning Piece

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Westfall, Reuther, Tucker

Top UAW Officials Lost Direction and deserve Blame
UAW Officials Lose Direction..Flint Journal's Ron Fonger

He's a Rebel Darlene Love / Mike Westfall
He's A Rebel ..Darlene Love.. 2011 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

MAQUILADORA ..US EXPORTED SLAVERY
Maquiladora.. US Exported Slavery

Westfall/Father George Schultze Interview
Malcolm A. Kline / Director of Accuracy in the Media

Karen Covell Hollywood Interview
Karen Covell .. TV Producer / Director ..Hollywood Interview

UAW Officials Lose Direction
UAW Officials Lose Direction

David hardy / Mike Westfall
Best Selling Author David T. Hardy Interview

David Hardy and the Second Amendment
Canada Free Press ... David Hardy and the Second Amendment

nader.org
nader.org

Spero / Maquiladora Slavery
Spero / Maquiladora Slavery

Mike Westfalls chapter in Michael Moores bio
Mike Westfalls chapter in Michael Moores bio./ Impact Wire

UAW Black October  @ UAW-NDM
UAW Black October @ UAW-NDM

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AUTO INDUSTRY CANCER

World Intellectual publisher
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Extensive Westfall writings in text books targeting Mexico, Maquiladora & N.A.F.T.A.

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Maquiladora Slavery / Energy Publishers

Who is Mike Westfall?
Who is Mike Westfall?




 


 

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