Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Union Backlash

Exhibit A: A Gallup Poll finds that for the first time in polling history going back to the 1930s, fewer than half of Americans (48%) approve of labor unions (see chart above).

Exhibit B: Township officials expressed frustration that several unions representing Moorestown, New Jersey government workers have not agreed to reopen contract negotiations.

"It's more than frustrating," said Councilman Greg Gallo. "It's irresponsible and it shows tremendous shortsightedness and, frankly, I think it shows a disrespect to the taxpayers and to council to not even enter into a conversation."

Exhibit C: "If it's legal, Las Vegas should fire all city employees and then offer to hire them back for a reduced work week, Mayor Oscar Goodman said Wednesday.

Such a move could save the city enough money to avoid layoffs and program cuts, he said, and he directed the city attorney's office to study the idea. "If we're permitted to do that legally, I'm prepared to take the risk of political capital," Goodman said. Union leaders called Goodman a "bully" and said he just wants to throw out existing labor contracts."


Exhibit D
: Detroit Mayor Dave Bing said that more employee layoffs are imminent because the city has been unable to reach a contract agreement with its largest union.

16 Comments:

At 3/11/2010 1:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm liking that Vegas mayor more and more. I loved how he berated Obama for his Vegas bashing, and now this.

 
At 3/11/2010 1:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Deflation . . . better than default!

Best wishes from Kansas!

 
At 3/11/2010 7:03 AM, Blogger Walt G. said...

I've seen posts on this blog about adjusting unemployment numbers to the growth of the workforce over time. Likewise, shouldn't these surveys be adjusted to the percentage of union workers in the workforce over time? I find it surprising that almost 50% of the people polled have a favorable view of labor unions when just slightly over 12% belong to one today.

Now we just need to get the 38% of the people who approve of unions and don't belong to one to join. That looks like a good reason to approve the Employee Free Choice Act to me.

 
At 3/11/2010 7:59 AM, Blogger sethstorm said...

Looks like Mr. Goodman forgot what hubris means. Never mind that this action shows his lack of character.

If he wants to play Russian Roulette, he shouldn't be taking the city down with him.

 
At 3/11/2010 9:20 AM, Blogger Paul said...

sethstorm,

Just curious, are you using Mr. Perry's blog to embed coded messages in your posts here? That would explain your bizarre ramblings.

 
At 3/11/2010 10:20 AM, Blogger sethstorm said...

Not speaking in code, that's just your interpretation. But I don't think anything I could say or present would change you. My command of the English language has not been a problem in the past.

--

Looking at the graph, it seems that folks were (more or less) set in their ways after the 1960's. It doesn't seem to consistently move based on economic conditions.

Something else would appear to be the cause.

 
At 3/11/2010 11:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it surprising that almost 50% of the people polled have a favorable view of labor unions when just slightly over 12% belong to one today.

I find it surprising too. Perhaps, if they were aware of labor's racist history, or how unions use their members dues to corrupt the political process and loot the public treasury; how they destroy every industry they infest and deny children a chance for a decent education. Perhaps, they've never thought about how the unions strategy is, at it's core, no different than an extortion racket that holds both private and public property hostage to the demands of a bunch of losers, unable to cut it on their own.

Yeah, if we could just get the 38% of people who do not belong to unions, but have been deluded into having a favorable opinion of them, to wake up and realize that unions destroy everything they touch, well, that would be progress.

 
At 3/11/2010 12:34 PM, Blogger OA said...

sethstorm said...
...
Looking at the graph, it seems that folks were (more or less) set in their ways after the 1960's. It doesn't seem to consistently move based on economic conditions.

Something else would appear to be the cause.



2 reasons.

Unions used to be mainly a private industry issue. And in many cases, they would agree to pay cuts and work rule adjustments due to pending or actual bankruptcies. Steel and the airline industry being examples. The grocery employees union in California also agreed to wage scale changes a few years ago because so many non-union alternatives exist. Now unions moved to mainly government jobs where politicians have no financial constraints until they can't tax or borrow anymore. That just happened.

Second reason is the media has finally changed coverage. Not only is liberal leaning media losing its dominance, there are just too many glaring examples of ridiculous union demands. Who knew about the GM job bank until a year or so ago?

When even the San Francisco Chronicle highlights outrageous government salaries, they've clearly gotten ridiculous.

 
At 3/11/2010 12:38 PM, Blogger Marko said...

Many people have a favorable view of unions because they have not been in one. Once they are in one, they often change their mind. Unions to get decertified occasionally, you know.

I am shocked that so many people have a favorable view of unions, actually. I guess as a corporate employment attorney, I am in a rare position to see union abuses, so it is extra shocking to me to see people supporting these obscene monopolist protection rackets. We had employees terminated for using racial epithets at minorities, stealing, selling drugs on company property and for admitted sexual harassment and the unions forced us to REHIRE them, even when they admitted guilt. The arbitrator felt sorry for them, or thought they were at the company too long to be fired, or felt the company had not been consistent in firing all such people over the last 20 years, depending on the case. This is ludicrous.

You know, if we want a free country, it needs to be free for employers too. Free to fire people for using the N word, or stealing or dealing drugs. Unions reduce freedom in the labor market, and should be consigned to the dustbin of history.

 
At 3/11/2010 1:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live and work for San Francisco where the mayor is doing the same thing. It is a terrible idea. If the city does not reduce services with 6% less work hours than find and layoff the 6% worse employees. These mass layoffs just erode worker morale.

I am in a union and think unions can be a good thing but have become way to powerful and as always power corrupts. The ideal system would be unions looking out for workers and politicians looking out for the community that hires the worker. Our system now has politicians on the union side.

 
At 3/11/2010 1:27 PM, Blogger Walt G. said...

Marko,

I have never seen an arbitrator who had feelings—they would not last long at that job. That's what is required to "feel sorry" for someone. Most employer cases are lost because the documentation is poor to nonexistent or the rules were arbitrarily or capriciously applied to discharge the employee.

Your remark about a lack of consistency is important because it shows a bias against the contractual process that our country is built on. Would you deny the same due process to support the worker that supports the CEOs’ contracts? Why don’t we let everyone denounce their labor union agreements, employment contracts, and tenure status and become at-will-employees? What’s good for one should be good for all.

Anonymous, I agree that power corrupts. The only thing worse is absolute power. That is what you have left after are labor unions are gone. Would you also get rid of armies because they make war?

This is hilarious. My Word Verfication for this post is "bigot." Am I being set up here?

 
At 3/11/2010 2:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most employer cases are lost because the documentation is poor to nonexistent or the rules were arbitrarily or capriciously applied to discharge the employee.

Liar. Have you ever seen the flow chart detailing the steps required to fire a unionized government worker? When you stoop to arguing absolute falsehoods to cover the corruption that you have created in our system of government, your arguments become little more than a joke.

Your remark about a lack of consistency is important because it shows a bias against the contractual process that our country is built on.

A legitimate contractual agreement must be entered into freely, and not be the product of coercion. Every single contract negotiated with a union is negotiated under duress. The next time you negotiate a contract, try turning over everything you own, along with the power to confiscate or destroy it, to the other party, then come back and tell us how "fair" the negotiation was.

Everyone should be "at will" employees. I always have been, and I've had employers compete for my services. Successful businesses cultivate and reward good employees, and they are mindful of their contribution. Unions destroy an individuals incentive to gain marketable skills and improve his circumstances through his own drive and amibition. They provide security for losers.

The only thing worse is absolute power. That is what you have left after are labor unions are gone.

No one has power over me. I am a free individual who relies on my own talents. If my employer doesn't appreciate my efforts, I go to work for his competitors or start a business of my own. I do not need to join a mob, whose sole purpose is to steal someone else's private property through state sponsored coercion, to affirm my worth.

 
At 3/11/2010 7:25 PM, Blogger Richard Rider, Chair, San Diego Tax Fighters said...

A more interesting and accurate poll would ask parse this survey into two questions:

1. What do you think of unions in the private sector?

2. What do you think of PUBLIC employee labor unions?

I think we'd find the rating of public employee labor unions to be FAR lower than this combined question suggests. Conversely, perhaps the private unions would fare a bit better.

Frankly, many of us are not too concerned about private unions -- we don't have to buy their company's product or service. The union gets out of hand, the business goes under. Such is the market.

But public employees use the force of government (and their monopoly status) to extract what they want from taxpayers -- volition goes out the window.

 
At 3/11/2010 9:05 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...

Marko said:
Well, congratulations. You're part of the problem. How about the case where you're tasked to find some obscure technicality to get rid of an undesirable person? Every person you find a way to fire through that technicality contributes to that 38%.

I hope you love your job of hired gun. Not only do you have the ability to kill unions, you also can harm US citizens(e.g. using a technicality against citizens to defend offshoring).

Anonymous said at 3/11/10, 11:25am
Well, that presumes that businesses are saintly and unions are not saintly. Security isn't for losers, it is for people who want to be treated w/ honesty when the market considers both concepts as unprofitable. Of course, you just hate unions and any tactic/strategy that can help them(even if it is only to help non-businesspeople to even the odds w/o a union).

Businesses are just as corrupt. Unions provide a check against business Corruption and end-runs around regulation. Namely, their existence protects against folks like Marko from using the law against any US citizen. Kill unions, someone will fill that void(e.g. US citizens against offshoring or whom whistleblow against illegal practices).

What you are saying is:
'Security for me, but not for thee.'
(referring to security only being for the businessperson and not the worker)

How hypocritical of you to give security only for businesses.

You only prove that unions are the proverbial coal mine canary. They're easier to attack, but provide insight into how badly regular US citizens will be treated.

 
At 3/12/2010 12:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Security isn't for losers, it is for people who want to be treated w/ honesty when the market considers both concepts as unprofitable.

There is no security outside the viability of the company that you work for. Unless, of course, you belong to a public sector union, in which case you should have absolutely no right to organize against the people of the United States. And, please, spare us the lectures about the nobility of labor, honesty and union are two words that should never appear in the same sentence.

 
At 3/12/2010 3:55 AM, Blogger sethstorm said...

Anonymous said at 3/12/2010 12:34 AM
Unless, of course, you belong to a public sector union...

...where you believe they should be at the mercy of the politician and the influences that control said politician.

You're handing the power to the politician. You also presume that those working in those professions are all eligible to unseat him.



please, spare us the lectures about the nobility of labor,

You completely missed my point. That point was that security and honest is for everyone involved. It does not matter whether you own a business, work for one, wish to do either, or whether you favor/oppose a union.


honesty and union are two words that should never appear in the same sentence.

Then honesty, business, offshoring, and immigration law should also never appear in the same sentence(unless you're talking about the lack of honesty). That's something that doesn't require the support of a union to understand.

Once you're done w/ unions, the next natural target will be US citizens.

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home