I hate to disagree with you, KAK, but on this one we part company. I do think the heads of unions have sold out their workers over the years. Change is never easy, but I believe unions have become antiquated. If you have a good work ethic, you should not need union protection (not you personally, but anyone). I believe in merit pay---something unions disdain because the dead-weights would never get paid. Well, we're still friends, and this sounds odd coming from a Liberal like me but, that's how I feel.
June 14, 2010 at 04:02 PM
Rich, no two people ever think alike, it is OK to disagree, better with me than Cher, right............Yes Rich, I do agree that union leaders have sold out their members over the years. Unions have the same problem as government and Wall Street. Anytime massive pools of money exist there will be fingers sneaking into the pie. Unions are the full embodiment of democracy in the work place, our daily lives if you will. A more responsible suspect attitude on the part of union members is the solution to union boss mismanagement. I agree with merit pay, a decent(living) wage supplemented with bonuses for productive workers.
Antiquated, I do want to give you a proverbial slap in the head on that one. People died in the early 1900's fighting for the rights to collective bargaining. Unions gave rise to national labor laws which have all but been ignored by government and industry in the last twenty years, this would not happen with strong unions. The January Supreme court decision giving "corporations" and "unions" decreased election funding restrictions is a major reason for the reemergence of strong unions. I am surprised unions were specified in the ruling, but now unions are our(the working man's) counter balance to complete electoral funding by corporations. The Supreme Court ruling makes it that much more imperative that the working class have some kind of organized representation in the selection of our leaders. Rich, without support for union wages the levels of nonunion wages would never have risen to the height that they did, nonunion workers have benefited by the fight of their union brothers. Now as corporations do everything in their power to drop American wages and the minimum wage workers had better second think unions. I am totally amazed by the turn in attitudes toward unions, too much right wing speal is sinking into the wrong heads, it leads me to believe the theories on the dumbing down of Americans.
The economy started it's long decline thirty years ago when Wal Mart moved more and more of it's production to China each year. The trend struck corporate America, right on the balance sheet so the trend was unstoppable, facilitated by changing trade laws the American worker was left high and dry. Ross Perot was right when he said free trade would generate a tremendous sucking sound as industries vacated America. Unions did not drive industry out, greed did, all of a sudden millionaire was not good enough when the plateau of billionaire was so much nicer. Productivity rose tremendously and the American got screwed as his return to his contribution to productivity. Rewards went one way, right into the balance sheets of the corporations and directly into the pockets of CEO's. The only thing redemptive, and redemptive is the wrong word, of the CEO to justify his gross compensation is the CEO's sociopath logy and this should not be rewarded. "The smartest men in the room", bull shit, look what the smartest men in the room did to this country they are dumb like a fox or out right thieves, sociopaths, men without consciences. American business fears the word socialism, well a down trodden working public may come to realize socialism is where it is at. The push back on corporate America will increase as the duration of this downturn continues, I believe it would be in the corporations better interest to deal with unions over a socialized system, something has got to give and the less explosive it is the better for the recovery of this country and corporations had better realize their interests also. Corporations are going to learn the hard way that for them to make money, the American public has to have money also, there is a simbiotic relationship there that they give no thought to. Corporate greed has pushed them ahead 10 steps to now push us all back 5 steps to be lucky to regain those 5 back in 10 years, all this damage to all was not necessary, greed propelled it, now we pay for a learning lesson that will unfortunately pass over the heads of many.
Other countries protect their trade with tariffs, we did from the 1790's through 1980's, then as a country we swallowed the neocon flat earth free trade pill, it has poisoned us and half of the world. Tariff was made a taboo word, Republicans sure know how to do the PR; It is wake up time, force industry back home with tariffs to deal with labor unions and let this country begin to rebuild. At this point I and I would hope a plentitude of Americans would be happy to purchase products 20% more expensive if we are making 40% more. It is time to force industry back, put pride in the union label and get back to the America of post WWII to the 1980's, life may never get better than that for the bulk of Americans but it did work for most.
Another point to ponder is why is it that labor is always the party to take the hit on rates. We have a situation where American business moved everything to mostly China, if we can coerse them back, we will have an even greater supply of production facilities which of course means low wages. This oversupply is due to managerial decisions to increase profit ratios. Why should it be automatically assumed that labor will take the hit. It is time for a strong reemergence of the expression, "it is a two way street".Let greed driven management take the hit, the American worker has taken it for too long, let profit ratios decline, the already rich can do with less.
Don't worry Rich, I don't get mad, just slightly ired. Keep that girl happy and the dinners will be fine.
June 14, 2010 at 08:11 PM
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I am a gazebo/deck builder who bought a motorcycle to try to give up the workaholic lifestyle and live again. Very politically interested and very sick about the past criminal administration that has dragged this country down the tubes.