Uncivil Rights

A BLOG rife with wit, sarcasm, and the endless joy which comes from taunting the socialistic and unpatriotic liberal left. Logical thoughts and musings ONLY need reply...unless you're really, really funny. You have the Uncivil Right to be an IDIOT. "Give me LIBERTY, or give me DEATH!"

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

The Future of Unions?

Truthout.org has an interesting article called: U.S. Labor Debates Direction By David Bacon

"Workers are going to get a chance to vote no matter what we do," Stern responds. "But the truth is you have to have a certain amount of strength in this economy to deal with global or national employers. The question isn't whether we're going to take away rank-and-file democracy; it's whether we're going to have the strength in which democracy can be exercised."

Unions need strength; strength is in numbers. Therefore, unions must organize and increase membership. This is the ONLY way unions can gain strength.

Both SEIU and AFT proposals agree that organizing is a critical issue, and that it requires more support, but they have different ideas about where that support should come from. SEIU calls on the AFL-CIO to take the $25 million annually that it receives from union credit card royalties, and use it to boost organizing. Wal-Mart should be the target, the union's proposal explains, because it has become a symbol of low-wage, no-benefit employment, affecting millions of workers in other jobs.

Organizing and unionizing Wal-Mart would give unions a much needed increase in membership and geographically cover a much larger area. Union leadership believes that once Wal-Mart succumbs to unionization, employees in other areas will be much easier to organize.

"When we think about auto, steel and rubber workers," Stern says, "before the 1930s and 40s they didn't have high skilled, high wage jobs. But they got a union, and a union job turned out to be a good job, where you could raise a family and enter the middle class. Wal-Mart jobs are not inherently bad jobs. Wal-Mart workers are not inherently unskilled people. They just work for a company that thinks it's more important to give the five Walton family members, who are each worth 20 billion dollars, another billion dollars a year, rather than to give every employee healthcare."

This is the short-sightedness union leadership displays. Workers work for Wal-Mart because they choose to; everyone has a choice. The Wal-Mart leadership, board of directors, and stockholders determine how profits are spent, and they have NO legal or moral obligation to GIVE every employee healthcare at the cost to stockholders. If the employees do not like this arrangement, they can leave and seek a job elsewhere. Contrary to liberal belief, employees are not owed a job, nor do they OWN that job, nor is that the ONLY job they could possibly find or have.

Contention grew much more heated over how unions should engage in politics, in the wake of George Bush's reelection last November. The AFT's proposal contains no specific recommendations for change, but presents A Peoples' Agenda, arguing that "labor's power, legitimacy and appeal are derived from enduring principles rather than from more-effective tactics and efficient structures." The items on the agenda include full employment and fair compensation, dignified work and dignified retirement, healthcare and leisure, quality public education and available child care for all, civil rights and economic opportunity, decent housing and quality public services, participation in the structure, processes and quality of work, and international solidarity upholding labor rights as human rights.

“A Peoples’ Agenda” has the qualities of a socialistic/communistic ideology. Employers will determine if full-time or part-time employment will effectively fulfill the needs of the organization, not the union. Fair compensation will be determined by the free market and supply and demand economics. Wages should NOT be artificially set high by minimum wage/living wage legislation. An employer can only offer a job and cannot force one upon anyone. People have the right NOT to take a job or quit one they feel is not dignified. Retirement is up to the individual worker to make the right choices and plan for their own retirement. Social Security is only a SAFETY NET and should not be relied on as the sole source of retirement funds. Healthcare is NOT a right and is the ultimate responsibility of the individual. Quality public education is the responsibility of government (and the NEA). Child care is a service for which there must be a demand and a price (cost) for those services; it should not be free or government subsidized. The things the U.S. have are civil rights and economic opportunities for all. Housing is what the individual makes of it, and public services depend on the community in which one lives. Participation is up to the individual; people have as much right TO vote as they do NOT to vote.
American unions are looking to European unions to model. This is a dangerous scenario. Unions are tied into government, in the socialistic business model. What unions are not considering is what this tie has done to European economies. European economies do not come close to matching that of the U.S. Worker production and efficiency are much greater in the U.S. than in any country in Europe.
Labor rights should NOT be compared to human rights. There should NOT be labor rights, other than those rights covered by current laws and legislation. If labor rights were to ever include the right to work, it would be just a step away from government controlling a business, company, or corporation. If that business were to shut down, the government could potentially MAKE it stay in business. When government controls business, societal philosophy will have changed from a free market, capitalistic economy to a communistic economy and government.

SEIU calls for reassessing labor's relationship with the Democratic Party. "Workers don't have a party right now that speaks clearly and precisely to their economic interests," Stern asserts. "Workers are looking for leadership on the economic issues that confront them every day, and don't see in either the Democrats or the Republicans the kind they want. It is up to our union and other unions to raise the questions, Where are the organizations that speak for us? Can we change the ones that are there to be more responsive to workers? If not, what do we need to do? We're not going to win elections for workers when you don't have parties that run on platforms that mean much change in their lives."

Democrats have rarely been labor friendly. Promises are made to gain votes then those promises go by the wayside because of the costly economic repercussions. Politicians will not change the basic economic employee business structure, to one closely resembling that of Europe; it is too socialistic/communistic in philosophy, and the majority of Americans would not support such legislation or the legislators that backed it.
It is time for unions to change. Unions will not survive with this old mentality. Unions have become a business and should be run as such. Offer an employer a good or service they want or need, such as human resources, and perhaps unions can survive.

Cross Posted at Blogger Network News.
totalkaosdave, 6:16 PM