Solidarity This, Fellow Union Workers

By May 7, 2008Labor Unions

From The Chicago Tribune:

DAYTON, Ohio – Autoworkers and suppliers are fixing up their homes, worrying about health care coverage and frequenting food pantries as they wait for an end to the 2-month-old strike against a Michigan auto parts supplier that has idled them or cut into their business.

The UAW’s strike against American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc., now in its third month, has affected about 30 GM plants.

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  • howeird dean says:

    Its time that we end the labor unions. Unions are strong in many midwest and northeast states. Wherever located, they have outlived their usefulness. they are burdens on the economy. They have run many once productive businesses and industries into extinction.
    Unions have about 15.4 million members. Which, 36.5%, or 5.62 Million are government workers, where at government offices sloppy and just plain bad work is rampant. many can look back an experiences with government beauracracy or the I.R.S. to verify this.
    The unions almost singlehandedly destroyed the U.S. Steel industry. There were once giants like United States Steel and Bethlehem Steel. The steel industry had disappeaed in the U.S. Artificially high union steelworker wages caused the death of this industry. It had a ripple effect.
    The raw iron Taconite ore industry in Wisconsin and Minnesota consequently gorund to a halt, causing the loss of thousands of irreplacable mining, ore processing, and transportation jobs to be lost. The steelworkers’ increasing pay and benefit demands killed a giant industry that couldn’t compete anymore. Steelworkers bargained themselves right out of a job.
    Gererally, due to the high labor costs, not much of consequence is made in the U.S., except cars. And the auto unions are trying to kill that industry too. Its the law of unintended consequences at work. Unions are obsolete and just add needless high labor costs to consumer and industrial products.
    Unions were started to help people who didn’t have a collective voice to end unfair and often labor practices. In the 1930’s there was no TV news or consumer reporters to bring to light bad company policies. People were limited to newspapers, if they had the 5 cents for one. Local unfair labor practices were not publicized.
    There were few labor laws to protect U.S. workers from abuses of employers. There were 7 day work weeks, no overtime, and bad or dangerous working conditions. As Tennessee Ernie Ford sang, “You move 16 tons and what do you get, another day older and deeper in debt. St. Peter don’t you come cause I can’t go. I owe my soul to the company store.”
    Now, Federal and State governments have stepped in and have eliminated the need for unions. Now, laws set 8 hour days, overtime, and working conditions. Law protects workers not paid their wages and overtime. Child labor laws are enforced. Unions aren’t needed for that anymore. State and Federal O.S.H.A. laws keep the workplace safe.
    The U.S. Should have strong tariff protection for equal footing for cheap products entering the U.S. from countries with poor pay rates. Other countries tariff U.S. goods going there.
    Unions promote strikes at any cost, both to local and state economies, and the worker. But, there’s a silver cloud to the strikers. Its really a silver plated cloud. Strikers get $200.00 weekly strike pay. That goes a long way in these days. But, how do workers make up for the shortfall and lost opportunity costs?
    During a recent Lansing, MI. G.M. strike and associated American Axle strike, several companies considering building Michigan plants, including a Volkswagen plant, decided not to come to Michigan, but to go to labor friendly states instead.They didn’t need the union grief. These losses of hundreds of good jobs are almost impossible to make up in this type of union climate. The real cost of the strikes was to Michigans out of work and the economy due to the Autoworker’s union reckless actions.
    The strikes cost G.M., its employees, and the U.S. economy too, when popular models couldn’t be purchased. Many in the public tired of an endless waiting list, and cancelled orders to buy comparable foreign imports.
    Unions attempt to monopolize the workforce. They create panic to the workers as the strike lingers and the strikers bills surpass the puny strike pay. They threaten the economy, without regard to the effects on it. And, they don’t care as long as they meet their goals.
    In non right to work states, there is not much freedom to get a job. Unions don’t allow equal opportunity to get a job. And, I don’t mean racial equal opportunity.No competiton with non union members is allowed. Equally qualified workers have to be union members to get many jobs. Many companies with union contracts won’t even consider your resume if you aren’t a dues paying unionist. If you do get a job, and don’t join the union, you are treated like a leper.
    The union system also protects unproductive and just plain bad workers. Just ask any union member that you know, that is unless its one of those unproductive ones. Unions protect some workers who are so bad that they shouldn’t have the job in the first place, and can’t be fired. They are paid top dollar to do nothing.
    Even line productivity suffers in many ways because of unions. Such an example is when a simple light bulb on the production line burns out. A line worker can’t just reach up and change it. A maintainenance worker must be called to do it. What inefficiancy!
    Unions contribute to companies going offshore to remain competitive. When employees price themselves out of the market, the company becomes unprofitable, and has to do something to survive.
    Democrat lawmakers don’t help the situation either. Unions are politically fueled by Democrats who think that they can run your life better than you can yourself. Democrat national leaders and union bosses had a fit when Black and Decker moved their corporate headquarters to Burmuda several years ago. The company took advantage of legal tax breaks passed by both Democrat and Republican Congressmen. And the Democrats blasted them for using those legal tax breaks. A public relations war was started by unions and Democrats to get the Company to move back to the U.S. They accomplished their goal. The company did move back under this pressure. The loss of the tax savings to the company resulted in the elimination of 3,000 U.S. jobs at Black and Decker. Thank you Union bosses and Democrat politicians. More of the law of unintended consequences.
    Today, we have newspapers, magazines, business reporters on the TV news, cell phones, and the Internet to get voices heard. And, these voices are powerful. Negative publicity forced major companies to end use of overseas sweatshops because of the damaging and negative publicity. Serious coal mine safety issues, even in unionized coal mines have been brought to light through these. There are no secrets in the Internet age.
    I know that a lot of angry union people will answer this. But first, ask yourself,” Am I angry at what was said here?” Or, are you angry because you were led like sheep for so long? Are you an embarassed follower?
    Now is the time for unions to be removed from existence.
    Let’s make all 50 states right to work states.
    From a right to work person.

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