Boycott instead of Strike?

W9er

Member
Has anyone thought of just boycotting shippers and brokers that do not want to pay decent rates? After reading a lot of the threads on this site and others regarding the strike I noticed that a lot of people share the same complaint of brokers paying low rates or not passing the fuel surcharge through to them. In most cases, if 50% or more of your freight comes from brokers and not shippers then you don't have a chance of staying in business even when fuel prices are good. Check the following link.FORTUNE 500 2007: C.H. Robinson Worldwide It shows that CH Robinson's gross revenue for 2007 was 6.5 BILLION dollars with a net revenue for 2007 of almost $267,000,000.00!!!! Think of all the $1.00 per mile loads old "Cheap and Heavy Robinson" sells to these poor operators who do not have another choice but to haul that junk because they do not have any customer in the area. It would send a message to the bottom feeders if they lost their carrier base because of a boycott against their rates.http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune500/2007/snapshots/240.html
You CAN get shippers on your own even if all your company exists of is one truck that you operate! It takes work. There is way more work to running a successful trucking operation than driving--that's the half of it. Also, if you are a lease operator and are not making it you should re-think your company and your operating habits. Do you own your own trailer or are you losing a big chunk of the revenue pulling theirs? Have you done anything to save fuel? Have you curbed excess spending at home and on the road? FUEL IS A HUGE RIP-OFF right now but if you practice solid business disciplin you can still make a profit. I run 4 trucks plus 2 lease operators in a primarily flatbed business. With fuel being so outrageous we make it a point to stay out of the unprofitable areas of the country and watch our costs. As a result we have been fortunate enough to make a profit trucking.
I don't want to hurt my customers who have been paying good rates and a fair surcharge (or enough of a good rate without fuel) by striking against them if I shut my operations down. However, I did strike against cheap shippers and brokers years ago by choosing not to haul for them. Do the same if you can and things will change eventually.
 

GAnthony

Methuselah
Supporter
only a few would boycott. then other trucking companies will grab up the freight. low paying freight, sure, but so what, it'll keep the trucks moving and out of the area they are in now. so, a boycott only stands to help someone else...

then, how long can any one person continue to boycott a broker/shipper...??

those people will always find trucks for the loads...........
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Personally, I think both is needed. I don't know so much that I would really call it a boycott though so much as I would simply call it doing smart business. We don't need to be letting shippers and brokers tell owner operators how much they are going to get paid for hauling freight, or telling them whether or not they are going to get a full fuel surcharge in addition to the freight rate.

I think the shutdown is still important though for a bigger reason, and that mainly being to let the Country know that we can no longer let the stock market and rich investors continue to drive the price of oil up. If these rich people want to continue investing in something that is is a natural and needed resource to the point it kills our economy, we must let them know that we are willing to simply stop using it when the costs get completely stupid like they currently are.

You bring up a very good point though that we can't continue to be pushed around by brokers and shippers.
 

W9er

Member
That is not completely true. I have seen many situations change by boycotting. When several years ago a broker came in and took over the shipping dept of a large steel mill here where I live and they cut the rate down to next to nothing. Carriers eventually quit giving that shipper any priority in providing trucks which caused the broker to lose a great deal of their carrier base. Eventually, the broker was thrown out because they could no longer serve the account and the rates are up to a livable standard. In fact, they are one of my most consistant shippers now. But, what we did for several years was to load elsewhere until a change took place. The best thing to do, if at all possible, is to stay out of areas with few freight options. That only leaves your back against the wall.
 

W9er

Member
Personally, I think both is needed. I don't know so much that I would really call it a boycott though so much as I would simply call it doing smart business. We don't need to be letting shippers and brokers tell owner operators how much they are going to get paid for hauling freight, or telling them whether or not they are going to get a full fuel surcharge in addition to the freight rate.

I think the shutdown is still important though for a bigger reason, and that mainly being to let the Country know that we can no longer let the stock market and rich investors continue to drive the price of oil up. If these rich people want to continue investing in something that is is a natural and needed resource to the point it kills our economy, we must let them know that we are willing to simply stop using it when the costs get completely stupid like they currently are.

You bring up a very good point though that we can't continue to be pushed around by brokers and shippers.
I agree to a point. A boycott is very productive although it takes more time. A shutdown could get some attention of the public also. The problem (I think) is if it will accomplish anything regarding our goals.
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Good points. The reason this industry is in the shape it is in is because of the attitude that "nothing is going to work". We are at a point that we have to at least try to start changing things rather than looking for reasons as to why it can't be done.
 

W9er

Member
only a few would boycott. then other trucking companies will grab up the freight. low paying freight, sure, but so what, it'll keep the trucks moving and out of the area they are in now. so, a boycott only stands to help someone else...

then, how long can any one person continue to boycott a broker/shipper...??

those people will always find trucks for the loads...........

Those carriers that take that low paying freight will go out of business sooner. Unfortunately, we need a "purging" of the low-rate carriers to make it reasonable for the rest of us who want to make a profit at this.:beep:
 

W9er

Member
Good points. The reason this industry is in the shape it is in is because of the attitude that "nothing is going to work". We are at a point that we have to at least try to start changing things rather than looking for reasons as to why it can't be done.
I agree--I'm not saying that "it won't work so let's not do it." What I'm saying is that we have to do what will give us the most productive bang for our buck. Now, with that being said, maybe a strike would be a good thing to get this new way of doing business started. A strike may cause some of these faulty operators to see that a SERIOUS change is needed and that there may be more people willing to take part in it.
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
I agree--I'm not saying that "it won't work so let's not do it."
I was actually agreeing with you. My response was toward Pro1's post that people are going to haul the freight anyway. Some will, but they will ultimately be out of business.

The only people that can still afford to haul at cut-throat rates are the major carriers. And this is why I brought up this topic..
http://www.truckersforum.net/forum/f16/should-government-regulate-freight-rates-2348/

I would rather be able to do it as you say, but owner operators putting a stop to the cheap rates on their own, but with the major carries involved, and with them employing new drivers at cheap per mile wages, and getting Government money for sending these students through CDL mills, I just don't know if it can be done without the Government stepping in on the freight rates again.

The industry is in such a bad state of affair right now, it is really hard to tell just what all needs to be done.
 

W9er

Member
Kevin Rutherford ATBS

Check out this link; http://cdlofit.ning.com/ This guy has a XM sattelite call-in show every night about how to improve your trucking business. It will do loads for your bottom line if you really want to do something about it. His name is Kevin Rutherford and he operates a business that specializes in trucking.
 

GAnthony

Methuselah
Supporter
Those carriers that take that low paying freight will go out of business sooner. Unfortunately, we need a "purging" of the low-rate carriers to make it reasonable for the rest of us who want to make a profit at this.
uh....no......they will not be going out of business sooner.....look at JB Hunt, Schnieder, Swift, US EXpress, and the list goes on and on....they will always have a truck or two or three in any given area of the country. cheap freight they will take to keep the truck moving. if i were an o/o i would try my best NOT to accept cheap freight. but truth be told, there are so many o/o's out there, that just to get out of an area to a more productive area, they will take the cheap freight if only to cover some, and i do mean some, of the cost of fuel. those people will simply "bite the bullet" and move on. the ones that refuse to take any freight to leave an area are faced with possible NO FREIGHT at a later time, costing more money for fuel if that o/o was to idle his engine to keep warm. don't forget, its still cold out here, and not too manyo/o's have those fancy APU's on thier trucks...........

Exxon/Mobil just the other day basically said, they are going to keep the prices of fuel high to ensure thier stockholders a higher return on thier stocks....and if its Exxon/Mobil saying that now, what makes anyone think, Shell, Citgo, and all the others aren't doing it for the same reasons....??

the boycott/strike would be hurting the general population, NOT THE OIL COMAPNIES................this is fact people.......you will NEVER HURT the oil companies...just yourselfs.............and guess what.....our Guberment, will never, ever tell the oil companies to lower thier prices..........
 

W9er

Member
I was actually agreeing with you. My response was toward Pro1's post that people are going to haul the freight anyway. Some will, but they will ultimately be out of business.

The only people that can still afford to haul at cut-throat rates are the major carriers. And this is why I brought up this topic..
http://www.truckersforum.net/forum/f16/should-government-regulate-freight-rates-2348/

I would rather be able to do it as you say, but owner operators putting a stop to the cheap rates on their own, but with the major carries involved, and with them employing new drivers at cheap per mile wages, and getting Government money for sending these students through CDL mills, I just don't know if it can be done without the Government stepping in on the freight rates again.

I don't want to seem argumentative or like a know-it-all, but if the govt gets any more involved with free market trade we'll go totally out of business. On the surface it sounds helpful but in the end it would ruin us. The government doesn't run anything well. But worse than that; I don't wnat them to step in and tell me what I can or cannot charge a customer. I charge customers different prices based on the lane and the service required as well as other criteria. Some get a surcharge and some want a flat-rate quote with ALL of my operating expenses figured in (including a profit). In my opinon only, I would rather the govt. not getting involved in my pocketbook anymore than they already are.
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
In my opinon only, I would rather the govt. not getting involved in my pocketbook anymore than they already are.
Agreed, I just fear we may be too far in the toilet with the major carriers dominating the industry at this point. But, that is a discussion for the other thread. Don't want to lose track of the conversation in this thread.
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
the boycott/strike would be hurting the general population, NOT THE OIL COMAPNIES................this is fact people.......you will NEVER HURT the oil companies...just yourselfs.............and guess what.....our Guberment, will never, ever tell the oil companies to lower thier prices..........
Who needs the government to tell the oil companies to do anything?

Stop using the fuel, the prices will come down. As I have already pointed out, last week, gas consumption dropped 1/10th of 1% and oil prices dropped from 112.00 to 104.00.

The people can tell the oil companies to lower their prices, and they can do it with a very loud voice if they would just do so. We need to lose the mentality in this Country of not worrying about a problem until it is "directly" affecting us.
 

W9er

Member
uh....no......they will not be going out of business sooner.....look at JB Hunt, Schnieder, Swift, US EXpress, and the list goes on and on....they will always have a truck or two or three in any given area of the country. cheap freight they will take to keep the truck moving. if i were an o/o i would try my best NOT to accept cheap freight. but truth be told, there are so many o/o's out there, that just to get out of an area to a more productive area, they will take the cheap freight if only to cover some, and i do mean some, of the cost of fuel. those people will simply "bite the bullet" and move on. the ones that refuse to take any freight to leave an area are faced with possible NO FREIGHT at a later time, costing more money for fuel if that o/o was to idle his engine to keep warm. don't forget, its still cold out here, and not too manyo/o's have those fancy APU's on thier trucks...........
I run flatbeds and I do NOT go to Florida, 11 Western states or high up in the Northeast unless I get a high enough rate to allow me to deadhead to decent paying freight. That is how you avoid hauling for fuel money. You have to plan ahead.
As for a boycot not making a change because of big carriers: Small carriers make up the majority capacity of ALL carriers in the United States. Three years ago, when fuel and insurance costs started getting high thousands of small, mis-managed carriers went out of business. As they went out of business the rates that those of us still operating got went through the ceiling. We could get almost any rate that we asked for anywhere in the country. Sure the "big guys" stayed in business but since they do not make up the majority of total capacity the rates still went up. It eventually works if you have put in place practices tha allow you to still make money.:thud:
 

GAnthony

Methuselah
Supporter
Who needs the government to tell the oil companies to do anything?

Stop using the fuel, the prices will come down. As I have already pointed out, last week, gas consumption dropped 1/10th of 1% and oil prices dropped from 112.00 to 104.00.

The people can tell the oil companies to lower their prices, and they can do it with a very loud voice if they would just do so. We need to lose the mentality in this Country of not worrying about a problem until it is "directly" affecting us.
whenever the price of oil would go up, or why there isn't "any oil to be found", our illustrious politicians have a panel formed to "question" the oil company exec's....we as a nation have always wanted the guberment to do smmething abotu the oil crisis, but there IS NOTHING the gubermant can do.

american's WILL NOT STOP buying gasoline, even those huge SUV's, people are just using thier credit cards more and more to fill them up.

american's WILL NOT STOP buying home heating oil, we need to stay warm, heat our water, or whatever else.

american's WILL NOT stop buying diesel fuel for thier cars and pick-up trucks, or their work trucks (for contractors, like the plumber, electrician, carpenter, or even the local home construction companies)...

people WILL NOT STOP buying ANY fuel needed for thier consumption.....

truckers.....?? stop buying fuel...?? so what....??? not all truckers will stop buying fuel......
 

GAnthony

Methuselah
Supporter
I run flatbeds and I do NOT go to Florida, 11 Western states or high up in the Northeast unless I get a high enough rate to allow me to deadhead to decent paying freight. That is how you avoid hauling for fuel money. You have to plan ahead.
As for a boycot not making a change because of big carriers: Small carriers make up the majority capacity of ALL carriers in the United States. Three years ago, when fuel and insurance costs started getting high thousands of small, mis-managed carriers went out of business. As they went out of business the rates that those of us still operating got went through the ceiling. We could get almost any rate that we asked for anywhere in the country. Sure the "big guys" stayed in business but since they do not make up the majority of total capacity the rates still went up. It eventually works if you have put in place practices tha allow you to still make money.:thud:
yes, a smart and BUSINESS SMART o/o has to plan ahead, and he shuold, its his/her survival. the others, you know, the "truckstop truckers"...?? they are destined to failure "sooner or later". as for freight rates going up because of the others going out of business, that will only last so long....till the next atch of "truckstop truckers" comes along, and given the amount of good used trucks on the market, many will be bought by "foreigners" getting into the business....talk about cut-rate freight then..........
 

W9er

Member
Some causes for fuel prices

One reason why oil costs are so high is that WE have created demand everywhere else in the world for fuel. The US has prostituted our labor to foreign countries all around the world and now they are rich and as they develop economically they are raising the demand for the same oil that we demand. Now we have a supply-and-demand market for oil that goes throughout the entire world and prices are rising. Thank our govt for selling out the American worker and now we are paying the price.
Another reason is due to the environmental socialists in our country. This undercover socialist movement running under the disguise of Environmentalism or "Green Movement" has over regulated our energy industry to the point that we have not made a new oil refinery in almost 30 yrs and we cannot expand oil exploration in places such as the wilderness known as ANWAR in Alaska. We have to keep relying on forein oil and pay the prices because of this. Thanks enviro-terrorists!!
 
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