Why do flaggers get paid so much?
They're probably part of a better union than you are.
Decades ago, when I started working in the social services I worked at an agency that had non-professional staff that was represented by the Teamsters. Guys who threw broken light bulbs into bins made more most of the professional staff. The upside, at the time, was that we got a lot of the same benefits the Teamsters had negotiated for their members - birthdays off, that sort of thing. Never underestimate the power of a 'good' union.
One of my friends was the only female industrial officer/advocate with the TWU (Transport Workers' Union) which is the sibling union to the teamsters. She has many a tale to unfold!
The Teamsters old management, of course, got a long way by being criminal-like thugs. I don't know what it's like now.
But their traditional driving jobs are bloody nasty jobs (as I bet you know Beth, from the injury claims) with huge impact on their health, family life etc. I think they deserve good pay.
Mind you, environmentally and road carnage-wise, I'd like to see it all on trains, but I digress.
It can be irksome when you see folk on way more than you get for what seem trivial jobs....but would you want to do them?
I mean, my friend the plumber is a millionaire compared with me, but he does a job which has many disgusting aspects and is very hard on the body....and which has aspects which are extremely skilled. (I didn't mean plumbing was a seemingly trivial job, by the way.)