Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

News & Politics News & Politics

The Right to Work Shot Heard Around the World Won’t End Well for Conservatives

Posted by   + Show Post

michigan right to work protest

The people calling themselves ‘conservatives’ are full of glee over what Americans for Prosperity (the same Koch-funded group behind Walker’s assault on workers) is calling the “shot heard around the world” – also known as the Michigan Republicans shoving an ALEC/ Koch funded kill unions bill down the people’s throats in the heart of the American union.

They gloat. It’s what they do. But what they don’t see the long-term impact of what they’re doing.

The unions have been dying for years. The orchestrated ALEC-based hits on collective bargaining in Republican-led states was no doubt meant to be the deathblow.

But instead, it has sparked ongoing debate about the point of unions. Many Americans who never had a reason to think about unions before are now aware of the issue. So while it pains me personally that Republicans did this in my home state, taking aim at all my Grandfather worked for his entire life just weeks after he passed away, I see an opportunity here.

This is the time to talk to your friends and neighbors about why the union was started, what collective bargaining rights have to do with human rights around the globe (collective bargaining is recognized internationally as a basic human right), and how the union isn’t Big Boss, but rather teacher Dad and line-worker Mom and electrican Brother, etc, and how unions actually help the market self-regulate.

Worker-friendly states (those without “right to work” laws) have higher incomes on average and better working conditions. An NEA study concluded, “Eleven of the 15 states with the highest poverty rates are RTW, while nine of the 11 states with the lowest poverty rates are worker-friendly.” If that doesn’t get it, how about a discussion regarding productivity? An analysis of gross domestic product per capita shows that worker friendly states “appear to be significantly ‘more productive’ than the RTW states.” Furthermore, “12 of the 14 most productive states are worker-friendly states, while five of the six least productive states are RTW states. The median GDP per capita for the worker-friendly states is $41,529.50, compared to $38,745.50 in RTW states.”


The premise of unions is very simple. When there are two sides negotiating something, the side with the most power does not have to give. Who has the power in corporate America? The boss. Sometimes the boss is a nice person, sometimes not. But depending upon the benevolence of a person is a fickle business.

Even worse, depending upon the benevolence of an entity with no heart and an obligation to shareholders with no moral core is a fool’s game. Hence, by coming together as a group, workers around the world have found a way to have a seat at the table. They hardly have equal power, and what little power they have is clearly resented by the Elite, but with solidarity comes enough power to matter; enough to bargain for a decent wage and retirement — the things CEOs get (though in much greater amounts seemingly due to their inherent “worthiness”) without question. Retention fees, if you will. Or, as a good businessperson might see it, ways to motivate employees and increase morale and output. In fact, “right-to-work” laws may be a detriment when a business is considering moving to a state:

“Right to work is not high on employers’ things to consider when they move to a state,” Dale Belman, a professor at Michigan State University’s School of Human Resources and Labor Relations, said Thursday. “For existing employers it doesn’t provide a benefit and may be a detriment,” he said, because of worsening labor relations in right-to-work states.

Some businesses are run with the idea that good business means less turnover, and less turnover means treating employees as valued commodity. So, certainly not all corporations are greedy vultures. But by design, the market is supposed to temper their greed with their reputations, among other non-monetary assets. This is why you see conservatives trying to sell the idea that greed is good. If, for example, we stop holding corporations responsible for looting their employees’ pension funds, there is no balancing act to the greed.

It’s ironic, but the modern day conservative movement is not conservative at all. They are rigging the market to have no power to self-regulate, in order to feed the greedy hands of the corporations at the top who stand to benefit from a skewed market.


By destroying the very function of the capitalism they claim to not only stand for, but love, conservatives are tolling their own ideological death bell. It’s not unions that wanted to kill capitalism. Unions are a part of capitalism; they are one of the self-regulating forces that can serve to keep “too-big-to-fail” at bay. They are a check, if you will, on absolute power.

No, it’s not unions that are killing American capitalism. It’s the greedy corporations masquerading as conservatives that are killing capitalism – destroying competition from smarter and leaner mom and pops, rigging the market with government subsidies and bailouts, and killing all measures of self-regulation. The public is slowly waking up to this reality — a fact that will not serve the alleged “conservative” cause well. It’s called backlash, and yes, it requires patience and diligence, but it’s real.

Republicans don’t stand for business. They don’t stand for conservatism. They don’t stand for capitalism. They stand for the greed of corporations who seek absolute power with no free market to regulate them.

Unions are part of the free market. Unions are a global part of freedom. Unions, working as a measure of corporate reputation, are a part of what conservatives claim makes capitalism work — self-regulation. What will the market bear, they ask.

I ask, who is the market? The market is the American people. What will you bear?

http://www.politicususa.com/shot-heard-world-shooting-conservatives-foot.html

by on Dec. 11, 2012 at 4:41 PM
Replies (21-30):
SeakingPeace
by Bronze Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 3:36 AM
1 mom liked this

Yes, I agree with you.  And another one of my favorite TEACHER union pet peeves is the fact that when EVERYONE else in this country was losing their jobs because of the state of the economy, some teachers had the audacity to bitch about not getting a RAISE!  

Quoting katiew2012:

Don't forget about teachers getting plastic surgery as a perk.

*goes hunting for the link*

Edit: the link...http://www.todaysthv.com/news/article/197295/70/Buffalo-NY-teachers-get-free-plastic-surgery

Quoting happy2bmom25:

when a line worker with only a high school diploma at an auto plant that received a tax payer bailout can make six figures a year, i say the unions have gone too far.

when auto workers can be caught on camera smoking pot and drinking on their lunch breaks, and still keep their jobs, i say the unions have gone too far.

when a school teacher can make six figures not including benefits for teaching art 3/4 time,  i say the unions have gone too far.

why should teachers get pay increases when test scores are decreasing? Oh, becuase unions do not care about the job being done.

unions have outlived their usefulness.  There are now laws in place that protect workers. The unions are no longer for the workers.  

The unions no longer need the power they had.



SeakingPeace
by Bronze Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 3:42 AM
6 moms liked this

And hey...for the past couple months I've heard over and over again that Republicans need to "get over it" (regarding Obama winning the election).  Many of them continued to go on and on with statements like, "Obviously, the majority of the people wanted him to be the President.  And this is a democracy; so that's just the way it goes.  Get over it!"  

Well...the same goes here with this RTW bill.  The bill didn't just "happen."  The people voted.  "Get over it."  


Quoting Canvas_says:

When 40 percent of even the union members support going to RTW you have to listen to that. This is not some fast bill only passed because we have a Republican majority, the people actually want this in the state.The state went against the unions at 58% in November after they dared try to change our constitution to be their playbook. 


mustbeGRACE
by Silver Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 8:05 AM


Quoting Sisteract:

Those laws in place will be gone- Naive is right-

People want to make this country a third world country- and guess ,what I'd venture to say not many on cafemom will be in the top echelon.

You'll have nothing-

be very careful what you promote and support- so many are already malcontents. Your own worst enemies-


Erinelizz
by Bronze Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 8:13 AM
3 moms liked this
The reason this is seen as a problem is that now people can choose not to be in the union, but still benefit from union protections and bargaining that is paid for by others who do choose to pay dues. It's kinda like if we made the tax system optional. Very few people would pay taxes, but everyone would still want the things that taxes pay for...schools, roads, libraries, parks, etc.


Quoting poietes:

Im a little confused on why this is so horrible. If this law gives them a choice to be in a union or not and unions are just awesome for the common man then won't they just choose to stay in the union? If unions are so great I dont understand why they are so scared people wont choose them. Arent the dems all about right to choose?

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
poietes
by Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 8:31 AM
Well its sort of an answer. So you are telling me that if 1/2 of the workers are in a union and everyone is making $20 an hr then the unions negotiate for a pay raise even the non union members will get the raise? Sorry I dont buy that it works that way. I cant see a cooporation giving every one a raise or benefits when they dont have to. On the other hand people who are not in the unions can negotiate for their own raises if their work merits it and possibly make more than the collective. At my old job I moved up the pay scale fairly quickly with merrit raises and high percentage yearly raises which would not have been allowed if I had been in a union.

Quoting Erinelizz:

The reason this is seen as a problem is that now people can choose not to be in the union, but still benefit from union protections and bargaining that is paid for by others who do choose to pay dues. It's kinda like if we made the tax system optional. Very few people would pay taxes, but everyone would still want the things that taxes pay for...schools, roads, libraries, parks, etc.




Quoting poietes:

Im a little confused on why this is so horrible. If this law gives them a choice to be in a union or not and unions are just awesome for the common man then won't they just choose to stay in the union? If unions are so great I dont understand why they are so scared people wont choose them. Arent the dems all about right to choose?

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
pinkcsmtlgy
by on Dec. 12, 2012 at 8:34 AM

I don't understand what is so wrong about getting a job, starting at the bottom and working your way up. And then if you're not good at that job getting fired. I also believe that you should be able to choose to join a union or not. To me it's crazy that in America you can be forced to join a group if you want to or not. Unions can be a good thing but I think they've been abusing their power.

Erinelizz
by Bronze Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 9:02 AM
Under federal law, a union does not have to represent all employees unless the union is the exclusive bargaining representative to an employer. In exchange for the exclusivity, the union is required to represent every worker, whether the worker is a member or not. So it really depends on the situation between the business and the union.

I think unions have done a lot of good things over the years. People are hired into a position with safe working conditions, fair wages, and good benefits , because of the work unions have already done. Those same people can also choose not to work for an employer that has a union if they don't want to. I know that union representation is not the only way to improve your working conditions, and I know some unions have abused power, so I understand the negativity toward them. I just worry for people because I know wages tend to be lower in RTW states. I hope it works out for them.


Quoting poietes:

Well its sort of an answer. So you are telling me that if 1/2 of the workers are in a union and everyone is making $20 an hr then the unions negotiate for a pay raise even the non union members will get the raise? Sorry I dont buy that it works that way. I cant see a cooporation giving every one a raise or benefits when they dont have to. On the other hand people who are not in the unions can negotiate for their own raises if their work merits it and possibly make more than the collective. At my old job I moved up the pay scale fairly quickly with merrit raises and high percentage yearly raises which would not have been allowed if I had been in a union.



Quoting Erinelizz:

The reason this is seen as a problem is that now people can choose not to be in the union, but still benefit from union protections and bargaining that is paid for by others who do choose to pay dues. It's kinda like if we made the tax system optional. Very few people would pay taxes, but everyone would still want the things that taxes pay for...schools, roads, libraries, parks, etc.






Quoting poietes:

Im a little confused on why this is so horrible. If this law gives them a choice to be in a union or not and unions are just awesome for the common man then won't they just choose to stay in the union? If unions are so great I dont understand why they are so scared people wont choose them. Arent the dems all about right to choose?


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Ednarooni160
by Eds on Dec. 12, 2012 at 9:08 AM

They gloat. It’s what they do. But what they don’t see the long-term impact of what they’re doing.

Oh...the irony..

poietes
by Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 10:38 AM
Ok, I see what you are saying but Id be interested to see what the wage compared to cost of living is. Im in a right to work state (sd) and cost of living is very low so we dont need our wages to be really high. I have never personally dealt with a union so thats why I was asking thank you for trying to answer my questions. Its a lot more than any one else has done. It seems a lot of people tend to copy and paste articles and then run away and not even attempt to debate the subject or address different point of view.

Quoting Erinelizz:

Under federal law, a union does not have to represent all employees unless the union is the exclusive bargaining representative to an employer. In exchange for the exclusivity, the union is required to represent every worker, whether the worker is a member or not. So it really depends on the situation between the business and the union.



I think unions have done a lot of good things over the years. People are hired into a position with safe working conditions, fair wages, and good benefits , because of the work unions have already done. Those same people can also choose not to work for an employer that has a union if they don't want to. I know that union representation is not the only way to improve your working conditions, and I know some unions have abused power, so I understand the negativity toward them. I just worry for people because I know wages tend to be lower in RTW states. I hope it works out for them.




Quoting poietes:

Well its sort of an answer. So you are telling me that if 1/2 of the workers are in a union and everyone is making $20 an hr then the unions negotiate for a pay raise even the non union members will get the raise? Sorry I dont buy that it works that way. I cant see a cooporation giving every one a raise or benefits when they dont have to. On the other hand people who are not in the unions can negotiate for their own raises if their work merits it and possibly make more than the collective. At my old job I moved up the pay scale fairly quickly with merrit raises and high percentage yearly raises which would not have been allowed if I had been in a union.





Quoting Erinelizz:

The reason this is seen as a problem is that now people can choose not to be in the union, but still benefit from union protections and bargaining that is paid for by others who do choose to pay dues. It's kinda like if we made the tax system optional. Very few people would pay taxes, but everyone would still want the things that taxes pay for...schools, roads, libraries, parks, etc.








Quoting poietes:

Im a little confused on why this is so horrible. If this law gives them a choice to be in a union or not and unions are just awesome for the common man then won't they just choose to stay in the union? If unions are so great I dont understand why they are so scared people wont choose them. Arent the dems all about right to choose?


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
mnmomusa
by Member on Dec. 12, 2012 at 10:53 AM
I couldn't have said it better myself.


Quoting happy2bmom25:

when a line worker with only a high school diploma at an auto plant that received a tax payer bailout can make six figures a year, i say the unions have gone too far.

when auto workers can be caught on camera smoking pot and drinking on their lunch breaks, and still keep their jobs, i say the unions have gone too far.

when a school teacher can make six figures not including benefits for teaching art 3/4 time,  i say the unions have gone too far.

why should teachers get pay increases when test scores are decreasing? Oh, becuase unions do not care about the job being done.

unions have outlived their usefulness.  There are now laws in place that protect workers. The unions are no longer for the workers.  

The unions no longer need the power they had.


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)