Firestone Tires: Scabs Killed Motorists

Tom Lehman TLehman at
Mon Aug 14 16:51:43 PDT 2000

Doug---The USWA has always been supportive of advances in the art and science of steelmaking going back to the days of Philip Murray. Naturally as general science has improved over the last 50 years, material science and quality practices in the steel industry have improved.

What was "high tech" 50 years ago, was "high tech" 50 years ago. The American steel industry was as advanced as any steel industry in the world and probably more so at the time.

Our problems today have more to do with global competiton and the resulting cost cutting. And cost cutting kills quality and safety. Fifty years ago most of the rest of the worlds steel indusry was being re-built after being destroyed in WWII. So global competiton wasn't a factor.


Doug Henwood wrote:

> Tom Lehman wrote:
> >It also goes for metal parts
> Speaking of which, I was just reading a paper by Jack Triplett on the
> new economy. In it he says:
> "It is amazing to see quality improvements to automobiles in the
> 1990's, great as they have been, held up as part of the unprecedented
> improvement story, or-as in a press account I read recently-quality
> change in automobiles given as an example of the new economy,
> contrasted with a ton of steel in the old. Actually, the first thing
> wrong with that contrast is that quality change in a ton of steel has
> been formidable."
> Is steel really lots better today than it was 50 years ago? How?
> Doug

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