Friday, February 27, 2015

Right-To-Work on the Rise

Workplace Fairness and Equity is advancing in the United States.

That's Right-To-Work, more colloquially, but the fairness and equity touch comes from Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, who emphasized that the reforms would give individual employees the choice whether to join a union or not, and how the union dues are spent.

US Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) offered a National Right-To-Work bill in the US Senate, which died.

In the states, however, the march toward giving individual employees the choice whether to join a union or not has advanced.

Indiana went right-to-work in 2011, and then Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed off on the legislation in 2012, and the union violence which ensued during and after the debate revealed the partisan desperation of union to hold onto political power and game the system in their advantage.

Now, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is forging ahead to make the Dairy State the twenty-fifth RTW state. The New Mexico state assembly also passed a RTW bill, with a wage increase. The Missouri Legislature, with supermajority Republican numbers in both chambers, is looking into the legislation. West Virginia and perhaps Maine (all the way in liberal New England) is exploring the reform, as well.

Why has RTW become mainstream in this country, and at this time?

Sixty years ago, after World War II, the only industrialized country still standing was the United States, and labor unions could have their way with industry, demanding lavish salaries, pensions, and benefits, and the corporate owners could provide them because they were a thriving industry with no competition.

Forty years later, and labor unions were stifling innovation, and corporate investors had the time and resources, and opportunity to invest n other countries with low operation costs, including a minimal union presence. Detroit, the Auto Industry Capital of the World, waned then dilapidated. Right-to-work states attracted American businesses away from union strongholds, and the employees fared well, too.

Not just private sector unions, but the public sector unions have become a deep menace to the fiscal and moral solvency of cities and states. Public sector union pensions and benefits are pushing cities to the brink of bankruptcy, enough that four California cities filed Chapter Nine, and are slowly negotiating their way out of the fiscal mess. Detroit had to declare bankruptcy and cut pensions, public services, and even water because of the onerous demands on a fleeing middle class tax base. Entire states have to restructure the pension demands, and the reforms are still being fought in court (Rhode Island) or in the court of public opinion (Illinois).

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker institute necessary reforms to prevent unions from coercing members to join and pay dues, which in turn elected officials who perpetuated the lavish benefits at taxpayer expense. The collective bargaining entitlements of public sector unions has brought the institutions into such disfavor, that even deep blue California has a rising cohort of pro-reform Democrats push against the Sacramento political machine.

Unions are getting a bad rap not just for the costly demands negotiated on their behalf, without the input of taxpayers or consumers affected by their policies, but also the offensive, obstructive, and violent tactics they resort to in order to make their case. Unions tied up the Port of Los Angeles for a few weeks earlier this year, as well as in 2012. Teachers unions have frequently resisted reforms and safeguards which would protect good teachers, and all students.

Right-to-work is on the rise not just because of the moral shame of forcing people to join a group and use their money to fund candidates and causes contrary to individual workers' sympathies, but also because of the undue, unjust political influence of public sector unions.

1 comment:

  1. I liked the bill that was passed in WI, it was not called Right to Work, It was called Freedom to Work. It is all about freedom to choose. The left is all about choice when it comes to killing your baby and a right to abortion, but not when it comes to work or school choice.