Spike,you are too right.I am a Trade Tested Diesel and Petrol Mechanic with NTC3,but have been dealing cars for 7 years.I had my own workshop for 12 years and even that was not productive enough-customers complain if you charge R200 an hour.
Yet think of this:a surgeon works on a guy,who,if he needs an Op.,is probably going to die anyway.Wether he gets better after surgery or not,the surgeon,and doctor and anaesthetist and chemist all get paid and handsomely,and the surgeon holds one sick guy's life in his hands.
On the other hand if I overhaul a client's brake master cylinder I won't get paid if the brake is spongy or fading,indeed,I have too much pride to even ask for payment if it is not right,and the client will bitch if you charge R400 labour.
Yet,I have how many healthy peoples life in my hands?
The driver,passengers,other cars passengers,pedestrians,cyclists.
But I can't get R400 while the surgeon gets R60000 labour for a hip replacement.

I would love to go back to my Trade,restoring vintage and veteran cars,but I can not earn enough doing it to even school my daughters properly.So another skilled,experienced tradesman is lost to the economic maelstroom of the quick buck.

Whose fault is it?
Is it the high and mighty attitude of the white-collar yuppie?
Is it cut-throat competition among the mechanics?
Is it a lack of Unionisation in the Trade?

I say lets get together as Tradesmen and agree to charge like a wounded buffalo.