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The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
The Decline of Unions
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ravan From: ravan Date: March 8th, 2011 12:30 am (UTC) (Link)
For instance, people used to be responsible for taking care of their own front yards, sidewalks, the strip of grass between sidewalk and street, and keep the street itself clean, in front of their house.

Even in the "liberal" bastion of California, we still have this responsibility, BY LAW, and it must meet city standards, to boot. There is no government union employee that cuts our grass, in the bastion of liberaldom. I suspect the problem is not union power per se, but city councils who are on the take and padding the payroll.

If the city "has to" trim your lawn (including the easement), they add that bill t5o your property tax assessment. TANSTAAFL.

I am not in a union job - I work in the tech field which is hostile to unions. But I see the stuff in Wisconsin as more an attempt to screw union workers in preparation to screwing everyone else, maybe worse than what Reagan did to the air traffic controllers.

Yes, union power needs to be balanced - but annihilating it isn't balance. Unchecked corporate power is a threat to union and non-union alike, the same as unchecked government power. Right now the corporates are running both parties, so they have control of the government. The only thing that hopefully will effectively balance that is strong unions. (But if the three get in bed together, we're all screwed.)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: March 8th, 2011 01:32 am (UTC) (Link)


The balance to unions is not corporations, but non-union workers. A company that willingly treats its workers well and thus needs no union is quite likely to out-compete a unionized company that treats its workers tolerably under duress. A non-union company can be more flexible and more relaxed than a unionized company, if the atmosphere is positive and cooperative rather than having an adversarial divide between corporate owners and employees.

Trying to "balance" corporate vs. union power is likely to shaft the workers, because unions were initially designed to give workers a way to face the tremendous power of the corporations without getting completely crushed. It's never a level playing field.
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