On Sat, 23 Aug 2003 16:01:08 GMT, Rick Chamberlain
This is incredibly naive. If every single union disappeared tomorrow,
do you think one single worker would earn MORE money? That's a total
crock. By the end of a year, I'd bet that almost all of them would
have either a pay cut, loss of benefits, or both. Would this country
ever have pensions or healthcare benefits at all without organized
labor? Or even an 8 hour workday, paid holidays, sickdays, vacations,
or anything? Not if each worker had always been forced to negotiate
individually, that's for sure.
Do you really believe most workers are lazy? The vast majority bust
their humps to make a living, and the poorer they are, the harder they
Really. Perhaps you should study companies who don't have unions to
deal with. I think you are incredibly naive to think that almost all
business would be so callous as to take a step backwards in their
Please don't read what you want to read. Read what I wrote. I said
that any worker who didn't carry their weight would make less. I don't
know how you can make the stretch that I think the majority of the work
force is lazy.
In the construction industry, this has been the law on all contracts
for government work since the 1930s, and it has been the case on many
projects where it is not mandated. It is also a law that businesses
have been lobbying to have repealed for almost as long. Can you
honestly say that if those contractors were allowed to pay lower
wages, we would actually benefit from the savings?
That's one perspective. Another is that they're smart enough to group
together and hire professional negotiators to change the power balance
in the negotiation such that they can leverage more out of the
From this viewpoint, the one posters' example of janitors making 3x
the salaries of the engineer aren't so stupid after all. I don't care
what their individual negotiation skills may be, no one could
negotiate an *unreasonably* high salary to collect trash; but as a
group that becomes another matter; hand it to the janitors for being
so smart. Sounds like the brilliant, benevolent, do-no-wrong
management are the ones lacking negotiation skills in this example.
On Fri, 22 Aug 2003 21:06:06 GMT, Rick Chamberlain
Unions are definitely still needed. The times when our country was the
most prosperous, from top to bottom, was when unions were strongest.
Don't get me wrong, I think they are dinosaurs in many ways, partly
because their effectiveness has been depleted by the courts and
Don't fool yourself. Your doctors and dentists are in a union. It may
not be called such, but what else do you call organizations that
present common demands and grievances from their members, negotiate
with corporations (insurance) in order to set their wages, represent
them when they are accused of wrongdoing, and lobby government for
beneficial legislation? Aren't those the major functions of a union?
Granted, Henry Ford paid his workers well without pressure from a
union -- at least at first. So are workers supposed to sit back and
count on the good graces of their employers to pay them a decent wage?
Don't hold your breath.
Let's get rid of the unions. But let's also get rid of the other
government regulations and court injunctions. Let's let disgruntled
workers and employers have at it.
Come on, TT. You place blame for the union's effectiveness at
everyone's feet but their own. Are you telling me the union bosses
truly care about the rank and file? Example for you - here in
Milwaukee, the county unions rejected an offer by the County Exec to
have a 1 week layoff for all employees to help offset the current budget
deficit. This was offered so that most employees would not face
permanent layoffs. The offer wasn't even broght to a vote - the bosses
shut it down.
Is that in the best interest of the brethren?
Similarities, yes. Difference is that doctors can change "unions"
anytime they want without suffering consequences.
As for lobbying governments, I thought the union was supposed to
negotiate with the company. I find it quite disturbing that unions are
able to make political contributions without consulting the rank and
file. You're just supposed to shut up and watch your hard earned
dollars (union dues) go to serve the interests of the union bosses.
You think that every employer is out to screw the employee? There no
doubt are companies like that, but I would think that the majority of
them would become a fart in the wind in short order.
Wouldn't that be lovely? One can dream, can't one?
TT, there is no such thing in a free economy as "economic rights". They
only exist in a communistic environment. In a free economy, hard work
and initiative are rewarded and laziness is not. Isn't that the way it
As far as 1/4 of the country below the poverty line - how many of them
are students, part time workers, etc? Where is this poverty line you
speak of? Example - a friend of mine has relatives who live in spartan
conditions in northern Wisconsin. They choose to live this simple life,
and the family makes about $15,000 a year. According to statistics,
they are poor. But don't tell them that.
The AMA doesn't negotiate anything when it comes to salaries. The
individual doctors or practices do that with the insurance companies and
hospitals they work at. The doctors can change insurance providers at a
drop of a hat. You can't do that as an electrician or plumber.
Sure, if you really think that most unions are democracies. But they
aren't. If the unions really cared about what the rank and file feels,
I'd be willing to bet that at least 40% of the contributions would be
going to the other party. But, that'll never happen in my lifetime.
On 23 Aug 2003 18:19:23 GMT, email@example.com (Charlie Self)
Amen. I think the only truly free market is in Major League baseball.
All of the attempts at slowing salary growth and create some kind of
economic parity between teams, which most people agree with, is
blatant socialism. If teams can't afford to compete, they should go
under, right? It's funny how most conservatives are for regulating
their favorite sports team, but not their own businesses.
There is no such thing as a free economy. Otherwise, I could do well
by selling crack on the streetcorner.
Baseball and other professional sports is an example of unions gone
wild though. If the unions don't like something, everyone goes on
strike and that's the end of the season.
Sports players are paid ludicrous salaries anyhow. Nobody deserves
$20 million to hit a ball and run in a circle.
I used to agree with this until I saw what the typical team grosses.
The players SHOULD get a large cut of the money, as they are "The
Show" that fills the seats.
The flip side is that the team owners keep more money.
Since the law of supply and demand isn't exactly driving ticket,
souvenirs, and stadium snack prices down, why should the owners get to
keep it all?
They deserve it, because people freely pay to see them play. If we
didn't pay, they wouldn't draw the salaries that they do. No one
_has_ to go to the ball game.
Uh, Barry, the need to pay those salaries is _exactly_ what's driving those
ticket, souvenir and snack prices up. The broadcast pool is getting a bit
Every time someone says that the pros are "the best," and "we want to watch
the best," I ask myself what they mean. If there is only one "best" running
back or tight end or linebacker, why do we bother with the others?
Not to mention we watch HS and College games, too. It's competition that
Finally, should you care to stop and think, the owners must be able to get
more for their invested dollar in baseball than in sugar-cookie production,
or they will invest in bakeries. When that paper factory of a stock market
was galloping like a bull, it must have been tough to get someone to risk a
buck on baseball.
Other than politicians, of course, addicted to OPM....
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