Earlier this month, the United Auto Workers (UAW) held its 36th Constitutional Convention in Detroit. Among the speakers addressing the 1,100 union delegates was Frank Patta, general secretary of Volkswagen's Global Group Works Council.
In his address, Patta took dead aim at the Chattanooga VW workers who had had the gall to vote against UAW representation last February, vowing that the union will prevail eventually.
"Let me say this to our enemies," Patta thundered. "We will go on ... We will not be beaten."
Why would Frank Patta care whether or not the UAW gets into Chattanooga? VW's Global Works Council is dominated by IG Metal, the powerful German industrial union that is a staunch ally of the UAW.
Last November, in fact, Metall's Detlef Wetzel admitted that "union-free" in Chattanooga is "not a business model" that his union could support.