34
   

Why the anti-union animosity?

 
 
Chumly
 
  2  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 11:46 pm
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:
...but I'm at a loss to understand why a worker wouldn't like them. Can someone explain this to me?
A few possibles come to mind:

1) politically conservative idealogical rhetoric promoted through popular media
2) employers promoting negative union stereotypes to their employees
3) employee's fears that unionization will anger employers
4) employee's ignorance of the potential benefits of unionization

Alas Joe, if you expect people to be rational in their thoughts and actions, then you're on the wrong planet.
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 06:55 am
More Colbert on Wisconsin, unions and FuxNews
http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/375207/february-23-2011/bust-in-show

Very highly recommended for the bit on Mark Williams/Tea Party idea to pose as union organisers, behave badly in front of cameras, to turn public opinion against the unions. Freaky.
0 Replies
 
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 08:09 am
@joefromchicago,
The only man who could answer your original question was last seen outside a Detroit restaurant in 1975. Declared legally dead in 1982. You're out of luck Smile
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 09:26 am
@cicerone imposter,
cicerone imposter wrote:
Yes, unions help non-union workers with better pay and work conditions, as the following statistics prove.

I was at a job that wasn't unionized. The employees didn't get dental benefits -- the management said it was too expensive, there wasn't enough money, etc., etc. Then a movement began to organize the employees into a union, and one of the workers' demands was for dental coverage. Suddenly, we all received dental benefits! Seems that there was money available after all. Funny how that happened.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 09:27 am
@Chumly,
Chumly wrote:

joefromchicago wrote:
...but I'm at a loss to understand why a worker wouldn't like them. Can someone explain this to me?
A few possibles come to mind:

1) politically conservative idealogical rhetoric promoted through popular media
2) employers promoting negative union stereotypes to their employees
3) employee's fears that unionization will anger employers
4) employee's ignorance of the potential benefits of unionization

I can't disagree with any of that.

Chumly wrote:
Alas Joe, if you expect people to be rational in their thoughts and actions, then you're on the wrong planet.

On the contrary, I never expect people to be rational.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  6  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 09:41 am
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:
Management isn't helpless, but unions are, at very best, an unnecessary pain in the ass. It is hard enough to run a long-term stable business without unions. Much more difficult with them - as General Motors, Chrysler, the former U.S. steel and textile producers discovered.

Yes, for some employers, it's harder to run their businesses with unions than without them. It is also, I would add, harder to run a business with safety regulations, child labor laws, minimum pay and maximum hour regulations, workers' compensation laws, and anti-discrimination rules in force. Indeed, it is a pain in the ass that we can't send pre-teens into the mines for fourteen hours a day at a wage of $1.00, and I weep for the employers who have to put up with such unreasonable impositions.

http://blogs.e-rockford.com/applesauce/files/2011/01/child-labor-coal-mines.jpg
"GeorgeOB1 is the best boss! He gives us a piece of licorice whenever we lose a limb!"
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 09:43 am
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:

cicerone imposter wrote:
Yes, unions help non-union workers with better pay and work conditions, as the following statistics prove.

I was at a job that wasn't unionized. The employees didn't get dental benefits -- the management said it was too expensive, there wasn't enough money, etc., etc. Then a movement began to organize the employees into a union, and one of the workers' demands was for dental coverage. Suddenly, we all received dental benefits! Seems that there was money available after all. Funny how that happened.


Which is why I'm in favor of the right to unionize while still being against unions as we see them today.

I grew up in a union household - my father was in the leadership council of his local. He was obviously a strong supporter of unionization and always said he'd never have had a pension without the union pushing it. Pension? Today? Who gets pensions besides unionized public employees today? You may get to contribute to a 401K and maybe you'll get some company matching, but pensions? Forget it.

The first Mr B was employed by a union shop. He held different positions over the years - some union, some not. While he was in the union we received notice that "Management is not meeting our demands. Be prepared to go on strike and be prepared for being out for a long time." More letters came. Each one indicating that things weren't going well and it was looking more and more like a strike was imminent. Never once did these letters indicate what it was that we were fighting over and what it was we weren't going to get. We were told to trust them, that they knew what we wanted and that it was worth striking for. Which brings me to my problem with unions. Those at the negotiation table were not employees of the company. They were professional union representatives, employed by the union (paid for by union membership dues) who were dictating what the employees were demanding and dictating that if management didn't come through they were going to call for a strike. At some point it would come to a vote of the membership, but at no point beforehand did the membership know what it was they were fighting about.
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 09:48 am
@JPB,
Another example. I once worked for a small regional entity of a large national enterprise. At one point morale was pretty low and our delivery staff decided to unionize. They joined the teamsters. They dissolved their union as soon as they got word that a nationwide teamsters strike meant that they couldn't work until the strike was over. It seems that collective bargaining was a good idea until someone else had an issue they wanted you to fight for.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 10:04 am
@JPB,
JPB wrote:
Which is why I'm in favor of the right to unionize while still being against unions as we see them today.

That's rather like going to church while not believing in god.
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 10:07 am
@joefromchicago,
Who me? Cool

Actually, it's consistent with my opinion on political parties as well. Unions and political parties served a valuable function at one time. Unfortunately, they became behemoth self-serving entities that are parasites to both free markets and free elections today.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 11:49 am
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:

georgeob1 wrote:
Management isn't helpless, but unions are, at very best, an unnecessary pain in the ass. It is hard enough to run a long-term stable business without unions. Much more difficult with them - as General Motors, Chrysler, the former U.S. steel and textile producers discovered.

Yes, for some employers, it's harder to run their businesses with unions than without them. It is also, I would add, harder to run a business with safety regulations, child labor laws, minimum pay and maximum hour regulations, workers' compensation laws, and anti-discrimination rules in force. Indeed, it is a pain in the ass that we can't send pre-teens into the mines for fourteen hours a day at a wage of $1.00, and I weep for the employers who have to put up with such unreasonable impositions.


Cheap shots with feigned irony that has little to do with the situation before us.

We do have extensive workplace safety laws and liability; worker's comp.; child labor laws and all the rest. So these issues are no longer associated with the need for or potential benefit of unions. In terms of operating the businesses that exist today unions are, in fact, much more of a hindrance than a benefit to both workers and the management of the companies that are infested with them. Indeed the facts that private sector unionization has been steadily declining, both in absolute & relative terms, for almost forty years, and that the great majority of union attempts to organize new companies and industries have failed testifies eloquently to this proposition.

That, of course is why labor's chief political legislative goal with the Obama adminisstration was for "card check" -- a euphamism for their proposed abolishment of secret votes of the workers and majority rule for union organizing efforts, and replacement with a system in which union thugs collect survey "cards" from a sample of workers, and the issue is decided based on the majority of the sample (as opposed to all the employees). This, of course would be open season for the fraud and intimidation which has long characterized union organizing campaigns.

More to the point here is the fact that the great majority of labor union members across the country are employees of the Federal, state or local governments, not private sector enployers. The truth is none of the ancient scare stories about the oppressive effects of union - free management apply to them. This has created an entirely new and harmful element of political action in which the paid representatives of the employees of government continue to use large and largely unearned revenue streams to manipulate legislators into actions contrary to the public interest. This works to diminish the effective authority of elected governors, councilmembers, etc. in carrying out their duties in the public interest. These indeed are the issues before the voters in Wisconsin (the former home of modern American "progressive" politics), Ohio, New Jersey and other states. All the other rhetoric, including Joe's tort lawyer theatrics are a deliberate distraction.
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 12:00 pm
@joefromchicago,
I believe that JPB does go to church while not believing in god . . . i think she's UU . . .
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 01:13 pm
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:
We do have extensive workplace safety laws and liability; worker's comp.; child labor laws and all the rest.

No kidding.

georgeob1 wrote:
So these issues are no longer associated with the need for or potential benefit of unions.

I never said that they were. I just pointed out that running a business would be easier without them -- a statement with which, I'm sure, you'd agree.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 01:34 pm
Here's an excellent link on how unions have helped all workers. That includes current labor laws.

http://www.epi.org/publications/entry/briefingpapers_bp143/
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:45 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quoting from your link:
Quote:
Unionized workers are more likely than their nonunionized counterparts to receive paid leave, are approximately 18% to 28% more likely to have employer-provided health insurance, and are 23% to 54% more likely to be in employer-provided pension plans.

Why, then, are only 7% of private sector workers unionized? Perhaps they recall what happened to the pensions and benefits of the countless private companies in cars, railroads, agricultural equipment, airlines, and other services that went bankrupt? Pensions and health benefits vanished into thin air.

The 40% of public sector employees who are unionized think - wrongly - that because the last state to go bankrupt was Arkansas in 1933 it's not likely to happen again any time soon; but actuarial calculations are way underwater as of right now, and getting worse. It's either bankruptcy or taxpayer revolt.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:48 pm
@High Seas,
Quote:
It's either bankruptcy or taxpayer revolt.
So far as I know bankruptcy is not required to renege on the deferred pay and benefits promised to state workers. We the people pass a law stating that we are not going to pay it, and that is the end of it.
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:51 pm
@hawkeye10,
It really depends on the contracts - for example, most Wisconsin teachers can be fired as of right now on grounds of presenting fake medical certificates.
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:55 pm
Did I mention that my 'slow down so we get overtime' union delegate was eventually promoted to management. - Then made redundant six months later?

I could never understand how he could move into management in the same factory he'd been a shining example of how not to work (protected by his position in the union) for over a decade. I always though he was cunning, but clearly $ fluffed his brain.
0 Replies
 
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:58 pm
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:

I just pointed out that running a business would be easier without them -- a statement with which, I'm sure, you'd agree.

That's analogous to saying it would be easier to run a medical center in the absence of an epidemic of bubonic plague. True statement but trivial.
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 05:00 pm
Here's another thing that irritates me about public employee unions. They wages earned are paid by taxpayers. Union dues are removed from wages so that non-public employees can represent their membership at the so-called bargaining table with the goal of getting the employer, which is US, to fork over more money. So, we the taxpayers are funding the unions, whose job it is to get more money out of us.
 

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