Carpe Diem

Michigan becomes 24th right-to-work state and joins states creating jobs at almost 3X the rate of forced unionism states

In an historic milestone for the rights of American workers to decide whether to join labor unions, Michigan became a “right to work” state today over the protests of thousands of union workers and teachers.  Despite those protests (some of which turned violent), Michigan’s new status as the 24th right-to-work state is a victory for the Michigan economy, the individual freedom of workers, and the taxpayers of Michigan.

In a stop yesterday in Michigan, President Obama repeated his frequent pro-labor union mantra that the “right-to-work” has “nothing to do with economics” and “everything to do with politics.” Let me suggest exactly the opposite -  that the “right-to-work” has nothing at all to do with politics, and almost everything to do with the economics of job creation.  Rather, it’s forced unionism that has everything to do with politics, and consequently everything to do with job destruction.  Here’s why:

The chart above (data here) shows that since the recession ended in June 2009, more than two jobs have been created in right-to-work (RTW) states for every one job created in forced unionism states (2.16 million jobs in RTW states vs. 1.05 million jobs in forced unionism states).  And when you consider that the population of forced unionism states (141.4 million) is 1.38 times larger than the population of RTW states (102.6 million), that means that RTW states are creating jobs at almost three times ((2.16m / 1.05m) x 1.38) the pace as in forced unionism states. We could also say that forced unionism states would have created close to three million jobs (2.16 m x 1.38) if those states had added new jobs at the same rate as RTW states over the last three years, instead of the 1.05 million increase.  In other words, there are about 2 million “missing jobs” in forced unionism states that have much to do with the politics of forced unionism.

Further evidence of a better labor market in RTW states is provided by the fact that the October jobless rate in RTW states at 7.4% is a full point lower than the jobless rate for forced-unionism states at 8.4%.  If the forced unionism states had a 7.4% jobless rate, it would mean that more than 800,000 currently unemployed workers in those states would be working today, instead of seeking employment.

Bottom Line: Maximizing job opportunities for all Americans should be the main priority for President Obama, the state of Michigan, and the nation. The data show that RTW states are doing a much better job serving workers than forced unionism states, by creating more jobs since the recession ended by a factor of three (adjusted for the population), which has helped bring the jobless rate of RTW states to a full percentage point below their forced unionism counterparts.  It’s a great day for Michigan as it joins the states that are truly pro-worker and pro-job creation.

131 thoughts on “Michigan becomes 24th right-to-work state and joins states creating jobs at almost 3X the rate of forced unionism states

  1. The unions expressed their disagreement with the rational discourse one would expect of such enlightened individuals. Walt G will furrow his brow and say he doesn’t know what to make of it all:

    • Interesting. A right wing instigator goes into an emotional group of union workers who are seeing their union weakened by the party that believes in “limited government”. He gets in their face and accuses them of ruining the city…

      Only the naive don’t see this was a deliberate attempt at creating video to “prove” that unions are full of “thugs”.

      • All one has to do is try and cross a picket line to get proof that unions are full of thugs. Unless those bricks are flinging themselves through windshields.

  2. Aw, come on, Paul, they’re just letting off a little steam in a good natured, if boisterous manner. Boys will be boys, you know. That guy was only kidding when he suggested he wanted to have sex with the reporter.

    It would be interesting to follow up on the assault charges that should follow like night follows day.

    • Ron,

      “..they’re just letting off a little steam in a good natured, if boisterous manner. Boys will be boys, you know. That guy was only kidding when he suggested he wanted to have sex with the reporter.”

      I think you just stole Walt’s thunder.

      Sethstorm would cheer on the beatings.

  3. I wonder why the police and firefighters were not offered the same freedom of choice? Does anyone have a good reason for that? It’s ironic that the people controlling the crowd were not affected by the decision. Were the people who voted for rtw afraid of antagonizing the police and fire employees?

    Again, my problem is with the freeloaders who will get free representation now. Union decertification elections have always been possible anywhere for those who really wish not to have unions and not to pay for them.

    • Walt G,

      “Again, my problem is with the freeloaders who will get free representation now.”

      Speaking of freeloaders, Obama transferred $40 billion in debt from the automakers onto the taxpayers’ backs to bail out you union thugs who destroyed your own industry.

      Union rank and file vote almost 40% for the GOP, yet union contributions to the Republican party amount to almost zero.

      Who are you to be calling others freeloaders?

    • Again, my problem is with the freeloaders who will get free representation now.

      Just how big a problem is that, Walt? How many people pay no union dues and get free representation. Any ideas?

      • The law is meant to cause disruption between those who pay dues and those who do not pay dues in the union, and was mainly aimed at autoworkers and teachers by Republicans. That disruption is the real reason police and fire were not included in the “free choice” law (only the Michigan State police has Michigan constitutional protection for bargaining).

    • I wonder why the police and firefighters were not offered the same freedom of choice?

      Walt, please correct me if I am wrong, but don’t public sector unions have different laws and rules regarding their operation? I am under the impression that public sector unions (police, fire, specifically) cannot strike. Is this true?

      • Jon,

        It’s not about choice, it’s about politics. They really gutted the teachers if you read the public legislation (their health care options are in the law, but benefits are a collective bargaining issue per the NLRA).

        “Police and firefighters make up less than 2 percent of the state’s 671,000 unionized workers.

        Bill Ballenger, publisher of the Lansing newsletter Inside Michigan Politics, said the nature of their work can be a powerful political force in individual legislative districts, and their political action committees make campaign contributions to Democrat and Republican politicians alike.

        In order to prevent strikes that could hinder public safety, police and firefighter unions have binding arbitration rights under Public Act 312 of 1969 that allows an independent arbitrator to settle contract disputes between workers and municipalities. Snyder, House Speaker Jase Bolger and Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville each cited P.A. 312 as a legal impediment to putting police and firefighters under a right-to-work umbrella.

        But labor attorneys say the way police and firefighter unions negotiate contracts is unrelated to whether union membership or fees are optional as envisioned under a right-to-work law.”

        From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20121210/POLITICS02/212100340#ixzz2Er7d2Z78

    • freeloaders?

      what an amazing piece of doublespeak.

      so, i am forced to accept your representation whether i want it or not, you may well have power over whether an employer can even hire me or not, and then i am asked to pay for the surrender of my liberty?

      wow. just wow.

      walt, you are so used to thinking in terms of unions being permitted to force themselves and their terms upon the unwilling (inducing an employer) that you are completely turned around here. the union exerts coercive force on individuals and employers and you declare those unwilling to accept and pay for it freeloaders?

      wow. even Goebbels would blush at such blatant mistruth.

      even if the union aids those not in it, (itself a VERY questionable premise) so what?

      just because i do somehting that benefits you does not entitle me to charge you for it.

      if i clean up the trash on a beach near our homes, this benefits you. am i entitled to bill you even if i did not ask if you would like to have it cleaned up and were willing to contribute?

      imagine a world in which we could all bill (without their consent) anyone we benefited. clearly, such a world is preposterous. so why do unions get a free pass?

      by your logic, anyone seeking to start a hedge fund is freeloading off of me (and all the others in the industry) who have set a pretty standard fee structure. shall i bill them? surely i can bill anyone who gets money from one of my limited partners (investors tend to diversify) as i already set a fee structure. you have to be kidding.

      orwell would be proud of you. avoiding corecion = freeloading.

      you are starting this whole argument from a bad premise.

      individuals ought to be free from corecion. that is the base state. you seem to assume a base state where anyone who provides a benefit to anyone else ought to be able to coerce them into payment.

      in what sane system of ethics and economics does that make sense?

      seriously, if i plow our (private) road so i can get to work and it happens to pass you house, do i get to force you to chip in and pay for it?

      • walt-

        also note:

        your whole argument seem predicated on the fact that unions are entitled to set wages and contracts for an entire company and force both management and employees to accept it.

        that itself IS the problem. there would be no freeloaders if the union could not force others to accept their terms. it’s an artifact of coercion, not some service provided.

        if the unions do not want freeloaders, hell, that’s easy. stop forcing employers to hire only union members or only those paid on union scales.

        bingo, no freeloading. let people negotiate for themselves. this is not freeloading, it’s a denial of liberty followed up by extortion. stop denying liberty to non union workers and to the employers and all this freeloading goes away.

        i’m sure you will have a rejoinder about work conditions etc, but that all falls afoul of the arguments i made above.

        just because i got our boss to put in an employee kitchen with free coffee and donuts does not mean i get to charge you for it against you will, even if it benefits you.

        • “seriously, if i plow our (private) road so i can get to work and it happens to pass you house, do i get to force you to chip in and pay for it?”

          You might find a very big pile of snow in your driveway.

          Usually, private road owners form an association for snowplowing. I used to do contract snowplowing during the winter when I worked in landscaping. I got paid by someone or the road did not get plowed (I let them worry about who paid what).

          • walt-

            that does not really seem like an answer.

            first off, if you pile snow in my driveway, you have violated my property rights.

            second, “form an association” is a voluntary thing. it’s one thing to get together and willingly join. it’s another to force others to pay you for a service they do not wat, even if they benefit.

            my cousin and her husband live on a private road here in PC. they plow it to their house. this benefits some others, but they do not get to charge them as a result. it’s just a positive externality. the world is full of them.

            i may plant a tree in my yard whose shade you enjoy in your yard in the afternoon. that does not mean i get to charge you part of the cost to plant it and more than if i get our boss to give employees free coffee i get to charge you for the benefit you get.

            benefit and obligation are two different things.

          • Property on private roads in Michigan have deeded access roads and the homeowner is legally obligated to clean the road in front of their house. If I can’t pass in front of their house to get to work, I can file a legal complaint and seek lost wages and other damages. I’ve seen paperwork with the specific Michigan Complied Law on this in the past on our contracts, and I doubt it has changed.

          • walt-

            neither of those examples seems to mean anything. they are, at best, appeals to practice and at worst, complete non sequitors.

            we can point to lots of bad laws, that says nothing about their rightness. in utah, no such rule exists.

            neither case demonstrates anything about what is fair or just or what we should aspire to.

            your comment about a tree falling seems like complete non sequitor. that’s a tort issue. it works just like if i cars my car into yours. what bearing does that have on the issue we were discussing?

          • also:

            you seem to be looking at this backwards.

            harm is not the same as benefit in terms of tort and recompense.

            if i disparage you publicly and to your employer by saying things that are not true and you lose you job, i would be (rightly) liable for libel and you could seek redress from me.

            would you agree that that is fair?

            if i say nice things about you publicly and put in a good word for you with your boss and you get a raise, that does NOT entitle me to some share of your new income.

            you did not ask me to do those things, i may have done them for reasons of my own (the benefit to you may have been ancillary or unintended), and, most importantly, you did not agree to compensate me for doing them.

            would you also agree that this is fair and reasonable?

            i mean, imagine what the world would be like if we could all attempt to charge one another for saying nice things.

            if you enjoy the shade of my tree, i do not get to charge you. if it falls on your house, you DO get to charge me.

            if i plant a wonderful smelling bush whose fragrance you enjoy in your yard, i do not get to bill you. but if i render hogs in the back yard and the stink makes your home intolerable, that is actionable on your part.

            harm and benefit do not function the same way either ethically or economically.

        • “just because i got our boss to put in an employee kitchen with free coffee and donuts does not mean i get to charge you for it against you will, even if it benefits you.”

          Morganovich, are you in the habit of negotiating or providing your services for others free? Can I join your hedge fund without paying management fees or performance fees and just let the others pay for me? I am an accredited investor, I used to have an RIA, and that would have not worked for him at all (I just looked at his last request to come back: 1.3% fees non-retirement portfolio and 0.4 % fees retirement portfolio and an additional $496 per quarter for each with one $496 fee waived if I do both portfolios).

          • Oops, according to the ADV part 2, that’s $496 per year or $780 per year for both (but, because he likes me and I was a long-term customer, it’s $480 for both for the next year)

          • morganovich, can I make you cut your tree down if it is infringing on my right to suntan in my own yard?

          • walt-

            “Morganovich, are you in the habit of negotiating or providing your services for others free”

            that’s a bogus question and completely misframes the issue.

            are you in the habit of paying others for services you did not ask them to provide?

            i do lots of things for my own reasons that wind up benefiting other people.

            that’s not the same as giving away my labor for free.

            if i do months of research on XYZ corp and determine that it is a fraud with bad accounting, i will short the stock. the limited partners in my fund will participate in the profit when it goes down and they will pay for that opportunity.

            but let’s say i then write the stock up and post my thesis about it being a fraud on VIC or seeking alpha. you read it and say, wow, morganovich sure has a good idea here, short the stock, and make money.

            are you then going to come and pay me?

            no. i gave you the idea. it benefited you. but you have no obligation to pay me. you did not ask me to give you the idea nor agree to pay me if i did.

            i posted that idea for reasons of my own. perhaps i thought that spreading the word would make the shares fall faster and get me paid. perhaps i wanted the reputational benefits. perhaps such an idea was the price of seeing the ideas of others.

            whatever my reason, it was my reason. i did it for me. it may have benefited you, but that does not entitle me to anyhting.

            let’s take the example even further. let’s say that you post back on VIC that i am totally wrong and lay out your reasons why. let’s say you are right. i see my error, cover my short, and save myself a big loss that would have come in the next quarter. are you going to bill me? on what basis?

            your whole argument here seems self contradictory and based on an impossible standard.

            you claim that you support freedom of workers to join and pay unions as they choose and freedom of employers to hire whom they like and at such terms as they find agreeable.

            so where is the freeloading?

            if you and 20 other guys negotiate a contract, great. b

            if, as you claim, i should be free to cut my own deal and the employer free to cut it with me, just what have you done for me anyhow and why should i pay you for it?

            it seem to me that if i am cutting my own deal, there is no guarantee i will get your deal, so what have you negotiated for me?

            this is why i see your argument as self defeating.

            either i cut my own deal with the employer, in which case the union was not my rep and i see no reason to pay them for services i did not even use much less want OR i am forced to take a union deal because they (and the law) prohibit me from cutting my own deal in which case, they seem to have lost the right to whine.

            claiming they do not want to represent me and that i am a free rider while also requiring that i take the deal they cut are mutually incompatible.

            that’s coercion/extortion.

            the fact that the nlra creates this situation is no excuse. the answer is to get rid of the act, not force me to pay a union.

            in a non coercive system, none of this is a problem.

            all the issues you cite arise from the union being granted coercive power over the unwilling.

            if they can become my agent whether i want to or not and prevent me from negotiating on my own behalf, then they lose any ethical claim to my money for that representation.

            it’s really that simple.

            the power to force me to accept you as my agent against my will is fundamentally contrary to notions of liberty, free association, and self determination.

            it is that provision that needs to go.

            take that away, and every problem you cite is gone.

            but to describe me, an unwilling recipient of what you force upon me a freeloader for not wanting to pay you for taking away my liberty and freedom of contract is simply outlandish, even if the work you did got me a better deal.

            maybe you’d like to wash your own car. but if i do it for you without asking, i have no valid claim to bill you if you do not wish to pay, even if i did a better job than you could have.

          • “the power to force me to accept you as my agent against my will is fundamentally contrary to notions of liberty, free association, and self determination.

            it is that provision that needs to go.

            take that away, and every problem you cite is gone.”

            I agree. The NLRA needs to be changed to allow and require non-union members to negotiate their own conditions of work and compensation. Until that happens, people need to not go through the hole in the back fence to get into the park I am paying for at the entrance. Grabbing a free donut with permission is not the same as waiting until everyone leaves and snatching one.

          • walt-

            “morganovich, can I make you cut your tree down if it is infringing on my right to suntan in my own yard?”

            possibly. but you are again making the mistake of treating harm the same way one treats benefit.

            rights do sometimes conflict. you right to enjoy your backyard and my right to enjoy mine can come into conflict.

            that is why we have courts.

            but that has no bearing at all on this union issue. it’s a complete non sequitor.

            to equate this to unions, you must posit that unions have a right to represent individuals against their own will. such a right cannot exist in any valid form. you cannot have a right to coerce others.

            there may be a law that allows unions to do so, but such a law is not compatible with basic rights of self determination and free association, rights you yourself have claimed to support.

            there seems to be a disconnect in your thinking.

            you profess to believe we should be able to join unions or not as we like and be free to cut our own deals, yet at the same time claim that because a union can create a situation where i might benefit from their negotiation by violating those principles you claim to support by becoming the exclusive agent and forcing me to accept their terms, that i ought to be required to pay them.

            but this situation is only created by the violation of the very principles you claim to support.

            you position is internally inconsistent and the facts here point to the obvious answer: stop unions from being able to take away the freedom of contract from individuals and employers and impose unethical monopolies and all this goes away.

            every issue you cite arises from the coercive power unions are permitted to wield through tyrannical laws.

            somehow, you keep leaving that out of your calculations.

          • “every issue you cite arises from the coercive power unions are permitted to wield through tyrannical laws.”

            Where you see tyrannical laws, I see realities, such as RTW, that must be dealt with as well as possible if or until the law is changed.

          • walt-

            “I agree. The NLRA needs to be changed to allow and require non-union members to negotiate their own conditions of work and compensation. Until that happens, people need to not go through the hole in the back fence to get into the park I am paying for at the entrance. Grabbing a free donut with permission is not the same as waiting until everyone leaves and snatching one.”

            this is completely invalid framing.

            if you are going to build a fence (that is somehting that you admit is wrong) and use it to prevent me from getting to where i wish to go, it’s your own fault. you have agreed that the usurpation of freedom is wrong, but then you still try to support a claim that so long at this injustice does persist, it should be compounded by making those victimized by it pay.

            you cannot simultaneously force me to do somehting and then force me to pay for it. that’s called a mugging.

            the union creates this problem, then demands payment for doing so? how do they even know i wanted this representation? how to they even know it is a benefit to me?

            if i vote myself into place as your official rep to buy a car (and forbid you to negotiate with the dealer personally) and then come back with a 4 door when you wanted a couple and a blue one when you wanted silver and with a pile of features like heated side mirrors that you did not want, would you feel grateful?

            i just forcibly got you something you did not want and now demand you pay me for spending my time doing so.

            does that feel just to you?

            there are 2 possible states of the world here until they get done doing away with the travesty that is the nlra:

            1. a union forcibly gains monopoly power over negotiation and is able to compel the unwilling to pay for this . such a policy is coercive, and worse, likely forces many to pay to have harm done to them (as in the car example)

            2. a union takes this power and cannot force others to pay. this still does harm to those who wanted a different deal, but at least they are not charged for it. there is some risk that someone who would otherwise have paid to join the union will not do so and thereby free ride.

            thus, if we accept that the position is unjust to begin with due to the nlra and seek to minimize the damage of this coercive injustice, we must choose between evils.

            on the one hand we have the evil of charging innocent people for doing them harm.

            on the other, we have the agency that is creating the corecion from which the other evils derive not being paid for possible benefits it provides to the coerced.

            in such a case, the choice seems clear to me. you side with the innocent and prevent them from having to pay.

            better to side with the party who has had his liberty abridged than to protect the coercion driven profits of the group causing this problem.

            after all, the union did not need to grab a monopoly on negotiation. they had a choice. those affected by this choice did not. they are compelled to abide by a choice they may have opposed.

            as the side with agency in creating the injustice, it seems fair that the union must bear the brunt of any costs that arise from it.

          • also note:

            the nlrb creates powers, but it does NOT create obligations.

            the only way a union can get into a position where anyone could even free ride on them in the first place is by taking away liberty from others by preventing them from negotiating their own contracts.

            this is a choice. the union chooses to do this and to take the liberty from others.

            the would be collective bargainers do not need to form a union to bargain collectively. they can be a club or an association. they can all get together and ask for a group contract in a non coercive way, compel no participation and demand no exclusivity in terms of right to negotiate.

            the fact that they choose not to but rather to form a union as defined by the nlrb and wield coercive force over employer and employee alike means that this situation is their fault. they created it.

            the existence of the nrlb no more compels you to coerce others than legal slavery compel you to buy humans. you are free NOT to take advantage of an unjust law.

            the fact that they do take advantage to it means that, ethically, and further harm arising from such ought to fall on them

            to claim otherwise it to argue that the best solution for coercion is more corecion.

            if we value freedom of association and contract and are faced with something that prevents this (like an nlrb union) to make the best of a bad situation, we should minimize further coercion, not add to it.

      • morganovich,

        I think anyone should be free to join or not join a union or pay dues. I have no problem with that. I am perfectly fine with the ones who do not join bargaining on their own (they might do better and they might do worse). Personally, I don’t care if you buy house insurance, but I don’t want to pay it if you don’t.

        Why is 50% of U.S. workers not paying federal taxes a problem, and people receiving collectively bargained union benefits without paying dues for representation for them not?

        • walt-

          “I think anyone should be free to join or not join a union or pay dues.”

          then i do not understand your argument about freeloaders. if i am free to join or not join and free to bargian for myself and the employer is free to bargain with me, then where is the freeloading?

          it seems to me that you just repudiated your whole argument.

          “Why is 50% of U.S. workers not paying federal taxes a problem, and people receiving collectively bargained union benefits without paying dues for representation for them not”

          you have this backwards. in the case of taxpayers, it is the ones NOT paying that are akin to the union. they vote that i have to pay and i am forced to do so against my will.

          i think you have the parties reversed here.

          for someone to vote that I must pay them taxes is precisely the same as a union voting that i must pay them fees.

          in both cases, others have voted to take my money from me without my consent.

          you cannot compare the payor in one situation with the payee in the other. it’s not the correct analogy.

          • “then i do not understand your argument about freeloaders. if i am free to join or not join and free to bargian for myself and the employer is free to bargain with me, then where is the freeloading?”

            That’s not how the NLRA is currently written, and the problem I have with it. If the union wins to be the bargaining agent, they are the exclusive bargaining agent for everyone in the bargaining unit (dues and non-dues paying).

          • That’s not how the NLRA is currently written, and the problem I have with it. If the union wins to be the bargaining agent, they are the exclusive bargaining agent for everyone in the bargaining unit (dues and non-dues paying).

            In that case, your complaint is with the NLRA. The direct pipeline you keep open to your representatives should be filled to overflowing with complaints about the unfairness of federal law.

            The solution isn’t to continue to force everyone to be a union member in order to avoid free riders. Choice is good, Walt. Unions should be able to choose who they represent. Get on the phone now & start making that happen.

            By the way, Walt, correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe your position in most cases is that the will of the majority should apply to everyone. Is your concern about free riders in this case inconsistent with that view?

          • first off, i agree with ron, that your issue is with the nlrb.

            second, you are still framing this in a very slanted way.

            you PRESUME that having a union take away my freedom and negotiate for me and compel me to accept what they deem important instead of what i deem important is a benefit.

            that’s a very slanted view.

            taking away liberty is harm, not help.

            if unions really provide so much benefit relative to fees, then they ought to have no problem attracting willing members who pay.

            the easiest way for them to do that and avoid any free riders is to allow everyone free choice.

            this is where your whole argument becomes self defeating.

            the unions create a problem by taking away liberty. you act like they are the victims, but they are not. they are the aggressors who deliberately created this situation. they could easily avoid it by decertifying and becoming an association that bargained collectively for members and did not do so for those who do not pay. just because they CAN be a union does not mean they MUST. if it’s really so terrible with free riders, then the choice is obvious.

            yet somehow, they never seem to do this.

            that’s because this whole free rider argument is just obfuscation for the desire to grab power and compel others to pay.

            it’s laughably easy to solve if that’s the real issue.

            thus, the unions are either being disingenuous on this topic or they are so stupid as not to see an obvious solution.

            which of those 2 makes you want to pay them to rep you?

        • “.. people need to not go through the hole in the back fence to get into the park I am paying for at the entrance. Grabbing a free donut with permission is not the same as waiting until everyone leaves and snatching one.”

          This ia a touching appeal to fairness from Walt G who has stated here he subscribes to the “hire your own goon” theory of politics. Obama bailed out the autoworkers by sticking the taxpayers with $40 billion of GM and Chrysler’s debt but here’s Walt with the temerity to point out others as freeloaders.

          The “freeloader” argument union thugs are always whining about is bogus. Non-union members DO NOT get all the union benefits so why should they pay for them all? And according to Lachlan Markay, ““The National Labor Relations Act does not mandate unions exclusively represent all employees, but permits them to electively do so,” explained Heritage’s James Sherk in a Monday column. ”Under the Act, unions can also negotiate ‘members-only’ contracts that only cover dues-paying members. They do not have to represent other employees.”

          Markay goes on to point out less than a quarter of Michigan’s largest unions’ dues go to representation. The rest of it goes towards, “..other expenditures, including benefits, political activity, and general overhead.”

          So why should a non-union member pay the full dues when about 3/4 of it goes to items that have no bearing on his paycheck? Turning it around, why should the unions get to freeload off non-union workers?

    • Freeloaders?

      Nationally, about 70% of the “stimulus” went to transfer payments and the rescue of union jobs. It was an even higher percent in WI where it was focused on maintaining the stream of union dues that wound-up in Obama’s campaign stash.

      Looks like the union goons and thugs made out like the bandits that they really are at the expense of the taxpayer.

      Talk about freeloaders !!!

      • “Nationally, about 70% of the “stimulus” went to transfer payments and the rescue of union jobs”

        You better recalculate that and include the GSEs next time.

        • “You better recalculate that and include the GSEs next time.”

          So your quibble is with the 70% fraction, not that unions were the recipients of billions and billions of $ courtesy of the head thug you helped hire.

          Add in the UAW bailout.

          Freeloader.

          • Paul,

            We won with Obama and lost with Synder. That’s the way it rolls–I’ll deal with it. The people who elected the people who voted for RTW have spoken and I will accept that–for now.

        • Walt,

          “We won with Obama and lost with Synder. That’s the way it rolls–I’ll deal with it. The people who elected the people who voted for RTW have spoken and I will accept that–for now.”

          You’re still way ahead on the freeloading charts, be happy.

          Plus, “your guys” just won the right to go back to work drunk and stoned on the job. If you ever look around you and wonder how Detroit went from being the wealthiest per-capita city in the US to the junkyard it is today, it’s because of goons like them and their enablers like you.

          • Those guys won the right to go back to work after two years because of the camera embarrassment in the public park (that’s why strip clubs were made). A standard penalty for reporting to work impaired in a shop that has a progressive discipline system–which includes non-union factories to keep unions out (like GE and Michelin)–is three days to two weeks off without pay for a first offense. Termination is usually reserved for on-the-job drinking and/or possession of drugs.

          • Walt

            Please comment on this from one of Paul’s earlier comments, as it’s possible you missed it. This reference contradicts your claim that unions must represent every worker, union and non-union. The claim is that unions may *choose* to represent all workers, but are not required to do so. Please don’t ask me to wade through the NLRA.

            And according to Lachlin Markey,““The National Labor Relations Act does not mandate unions exclusively represent all employees, but permits them to electively do so,” explained Heritage’s James Sherk in a Monday Column. ”Under the Act, unions can also negotiate ‘members-only’ contracts that only cover dues-paying members. They do not have to represent other employees.”

          • Unions have “the duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.” — Machinists v. Street 1961. This results in free-riding, and a deterioration of worker bargaining power.

            Minority unions are legally protected, but any negotiations they make with the employer that could impact other employees, even tangentially, would violate the NLRA.

          • Z: “Unions have “the duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.” — Machinists v. Street 1961.

            That decision addressed the question of whether unions could forcibly extract money from workers paychecks for purposes with which those workers might not agree, under authority of the railway Labor Act, and an existing exclusive union shop agreement between a group of railroads and the machinists union.

            It’s not clear that it applies more broadly, nor does it make clear that a union is *obligated* to represent non-union workers unless they have agreed to do so as part of their contract with an employer, as was the case in Machinists vs Street.

          • Ron H: That decision addressed the question of whether unions could forcibly extract money from workers paychecks for purposes with which those workers might not agree, under authority of the railway Labor Act, and an existing exclusive union shop agreement between a group of railroads and the machinists union.

            As part of the decision, it was determined that the union has a “duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.”

          • Z: “As part of the decision, it was determined that the union has a “duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.”

            With more context: “..a union’s status as exclusive bargaining representative” carries with it the duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion. Steele v. Louisville

            It is not required that a union and employer enter into an exclusive agency agreement. Members only agreements are common, and it is only because of a union’s choice to commit itself to representing all employees that the potential for free riders exists.

            It is not hard to believe that a worker would be at great personal risk if they chose not pay union dues and were considered “free riders”. It IS hard to believe that so called “free riders” are a serious problem for unions.

          • Ron H: With more context …

            You had said, “It’s not clear that it applies more broadly, nor does it make clear that a union is *obligated* to represent non-union workers unless they have agreed to do so as part of their contract with an employer, as was the case in Machinists vs Street.” If a union is the exclusive representative, then they must represent union and non-union members alike. Hence, the congress and the courts have determined that all workers must pay for that representation.

            As for minority unions, you ignored why the reasons we provided as to why those are ineffective.

          • Z: “If a union is the exclusive representative, then they must represent union and non-union members alike. Hence, the congress and the courts have determined that all workers must pay for that representation.

            That’s correct. The congress and the courts have decided that some workers must pay for things they don’t want, based on choices made for them by others.

            The key word here is *exclusive*. a union may *choose* to act as *exclusive representative* for all workers – whether union or non union – when they negotiate a contract with an employer, but they are not *required by law* to do so. They may instead, *choose* to represent union members only, when an agreement with an employer is reached.

            In a nutshell, state RTW laws remove legal support for *exclusive representative* agreements, and thus prohibit unions from forcing those workers who *do not want* union representation to pay for it nonetheless. If a union then acts to represent all workers, they have created their own *free rider* problem. It’s basically that simple.

            Notice that we have emphasized the word *choose* in every case, as the concept of choice is something you seem to struggle with, apparently believing instead that everyone should be forced to do what someone else wants them to do.

            As for minority unions, you ignored why the reasons we provided as to why those are ineffective.

            Can you rephrase that? It’s not clear.

          • Ron H: The congress and the courts have decided that some workers must pay for things they don’t want, based on choices made for them by others.

            Not to mention the writers of the U.S. Constitution, and every government before or since.

            Ron H: If a union then acts to represent all workers, they have created their own *free rider* problem. It’s basically that simple.

            If such a union works to make the workplace safer, even those who are not in the union will benefit. If the union negotiate for higher wages, differential rates will be inherently unstable, and non-union member will probably also benefit, yet only union members will bear the cost of such negotiations. It’s a typical free-rider problem.

            Also, the corporation is able to make a unified response, while workers will be necessarily divided. It means unions will just be social clubs without any real bargaining power.

            Ron H: Notice that we have emphasized the word *choose* in every case, as the concept of choice is something you seem to struggle with, apparently believing instead that everyone should be forced to do what someone else wants them to do.

            Democracy is tyranny.

            Ron H: Can you rephrase that?

            Unions composed of a minority of the workers are legally protected, but can’t be the exclusive representative of the entire workforce. The problem is that any negotiations a minority union makes with the employer that could impact, even tangentially, employees not in the union would violate the NLRA.

          • Ron H: “The congress and the courts have decided that some workers must pay for things they don’t want, based on choices made for them by others.

            Z: “Not to mention the writers of the U.S. Constitution, and every government before or since.

            Let’s see: Is that an appeal to custom or an argumentum ad populum, “Larry”?

            Ron H: If a union then acts to represent all workers, they have created their own *free rider* problem. It’s basically that simple.

            If such a union works to make the workplace safer, even those who are not in the union will benefit. If the union negotiate for higher wages, differential rates will be inherently unstable, and non-union member will probably also benefit, yet only union members will bear the cost of such negotiations. It’s a typical free-rider problem.

            Look. You can never completely exclude those who haven’t contributed, from benefiting. If we clear the broken branches from the street in front of our house others will benefit also. If we maintain what is generally considered an attractive property, others may enjoy the view without contributing. If we arm ourselves to protect against home invasion, our neighbors may benefit from the deterrent effect on potential home invaders. If people desire something they will pay for it regardless of what others do.

            It is NOT legitimate to force any of the above to pay for something they have not previously agreed to pay for.

            Differential wage rates, based on merit, are common and are not unstable. The very notion that every worker is identical in value and should be paid the same is ridiculous. It makes workers a commodity in which employers can have no individual interest.

            Also, the corporation is able to make a unified response, while workers will be necessarily divided. It means unions will just be social clubs without any real bargaining power.

            The sum of individual demands is as powerful as a unified demand. If you believe that workers should be paid more than their value to an employer, then you are correct that a unified response backed by threats may be more effective in obtaining undeserved higher pay. Of course in that case, those who might be far more valuable to an employer will not be compensated for that value but will be stuck with something less.

            Ron H: Notice that we have emphasized the word *choose* in every case, as the concept of choice is something you seem to struggle with, apparently believing instead that everyone should be forced to do what someone else wants them to do.

            Z: “Democracy is tyranny.

            That’s correct, and is therefore undesirable.

            Ron H: Can you rephrase that?

            Unions composed of a minority of the workers are legally protected, but can’t be the exclusive representative of the entire workforce. The problem is that any negotiations a minority union makes with the employer that could impact, even tangentially, employees not in the union would violate the NLRA.

            In which case your “problem” is with the NLRA.

          • “If such a union works to make the workplace safer, even those who are not in the union will benefit.

            You are assuming that a safer workplace benefits everyone. We agree in general, but everyone might not agree on what specifically makes a work place safer.

            For example an actual rule allowing airline workers to idle this vehicle by attaching a safety label due to worn windshield wipers – even in clear weather – seems excessive, and more of a contract negotiating tool than a sensible safety measure.

          • Ron H: The congress and the courts have decided that some workers must pay for things they don’t want, based on choices made for them by others.

            Zachriel: Not to mention the writers of the U.S. Constitution, and every government before or since.

            Ron H: Let’s see: Is that an appeal to custom or an argumentum ad populum

            It’s to clue the reader that you reject modern democracy, including the U.S. Constitutional form of government.

            Ron H: You can never completely exclude those who haven’t contributed, from benefiting. If we clear the broken branches from the street in front of our house others will benefit also.

            Of course not. Life and society is complicated, which is why various institutions, including unions have evolved to work out political solutions.

            Ron H: The sum of individual demands is as powerful as a unified demand.

            That’s clearly not true. In military terms, it’s called defeat in detail.

            Zachriel: Democracy is tyranny.

            Ron H: That’s correct, and is therefore undesirable.

          • Ron H: “Let’s see: Is that an appeal to custom or an argumentum ad populum

            It’s to clue the reader that you reject modern democracy, including the U.S. Constitutional form of government.

            “We’ve always done it that way” and “Everyone is doing it.”

            It’s clear that there is no possible agreement at this point. You have no problem with forcing people to do things they don’t wish to do, even when such actions harm them. and you see nothing wrong with stealing money from people to pay for things they haven’t chosen and don’t wish to pay for, while we see no moral justification for tyranny and theft.

          • Ron H: It’s clear that there is no possible agreement at this point.

            That’s right. Fundamental values can’t be argued. You consider any social contract as invalid unless you personally agree to it, and any infringement of your personal liberties to be equivalent to tyranny. We can merely point out to others that you reject democracy (presumably in favor of some sort of anarcho-capitalism).

          • That’s right. Fundamental values can’t be argued. You consider any social contract as invalid unless you personally agree to it…

            We consider any form of so called *contract* – social or otherwise – that involves one group of people forcing their will on others to be invalid. We prefer allowing individuals the freedom to join and contribute to groups voluntarily for their mutual benefit, and to pay for services they desire rather than being forced to pay for things they don’t want.

            …and any infringement of your personal liberties to be equivalent to tyranny.

            “…and any infringement of your personal a peaceful person’s liberties to be equivalent to tyranny.”

            We can merely point out to others that you reject democracy (presumably in favor of some sort of anarcho-capitalism).

            We should think it’s quite plain what we favor, but if you believe others are unsure, than we thank you for pointing it out to them.

  4. “Were the people who voted for rtw afraid of antagonizing the police and fire employees?” — Walt G

    You tell us, should they be? Is the expectation that a union member will do the job they were hired to do conditioned upon submission to union threats, even when that job involves public safety?

    As for the “freeloaders”, maybe you should spend a little time looking at the public employees unions MO.

    Using dues, taken by force, to elect politicians that rubber stamp union demands for higher pay and increased benefits or, for that matter automaker bailouts, can only be honestly categorized as theft.

    Union members, writ large, are all “freeloaders”. So, please, spare us the self-righteous indignation.

    • if you want the true freeloaders, it’s union management.

      far from being good providers of representation, what they mostly are is thugs who line their own pockets by forcing workers to pay dues.

      For example, according to the most recent federal filings, the Michigan Education Association — the state’s largest labor union — received $122 million and spent $134 million in 2012. They averaged about $800 from each of their 152,000 members.

      According to union documents, “representational activities” (money spent on bargaining contracts for members) made up only 11 percent of total spending for the union. Meanwhile, spending on “general overhead” (union administration and employee benefits) comprised of 61 percent of the total spending.

      The union appears to have spent nearly the entirety, or $119 million of their $122 million in dues, just supporting their leadership (and various politicians) in grand style. They actually had to borrow $12 million to do their job of representing their members.

      http://www.coyoteblog.com/coyote_blog/2012/12/a-really-bad-deal.html

      let’s go back to the snowplow example.

      i i get someone to plow our road and you benefit, that does not give me the right to charge you. beneficiary is not the same as freeloader.

      but let’s say i AM allowed to charge you and everyone else on the road regardless of your willingness.

      and let’s say i charge you each $1000, $100 of which i spend plowing the road, $300 of which i donate to the local politician who passed laws allowing me to charge you, and $600 of which i spend buying myself somehting nice.

      who is the freeloader in this scenario?

      would you really feel unjustified in asking to be freed from this system?

        • so?

          that proves my point.

          if the union members felt that free riding was a bigger problem that being able to coerce others was as a benefit, they would decertify and just act as an association.

          this seems like pretty strong proof that this ‘free rider” issue is a smokescreen.

          it’s the union that has agency here. they make ALL the choices. they choose to be a union rather than a collective and choose to force their choices on others by monopolizing negotiation.

          the other workers have no choice but to go along.

          then the union complains that these disenfranchised folks (who were disenfranchised by the union) are free riders.

          how is this in any way sane or just? you force someone into a position and them demand that they bear responsibility for it when only you can get them out of it?

          if the unions were really about collective bargaining instead of wielding coercive force, they would simply decertify and become associations.

          that fact that they do not demonstrates what a colossal lie and smokescreen this whole “free rider” issue is.

          • “if the unions were really about collective bargaining instead of wielding coercive force, they would simply decertify and become associations”

            Unions do not decertify anymore than they certify, the workers would have to do that by a vote as I understand it. That’s the process spelled out in the NLRB website.

          • Do you think RTW in Michigan was voted in for free choice? It is to divide and conquer the unions. Here’s from Gov. Snyder’s website:

            How does this legislation impact police and fire unions?

            This legislation has no impact on police and fire unions. It respects and preserves the status afforded to police and firefighters under Public Act 312, which reflects the hazardous nature of their jobs. We must preserve the loyalty and intra-unit solidarity that are crucial elements in the ability of our police and firefighters to perform their dangerous public safety missions.

          • “Do you think RTW in Michigan was voted in for free choice? It is to divide and conquer the unions. ”

            Free choice is the main reason. Ending the Democrat party’s money laundering operation is a secondary reason. Dividing and conquering the unions is the bonus!

          • Morganovich: “if the unions were really about collective bargaining instead of wielding coercive force, they would simply decertify and become associations

            Walt: “Unions do not decertify anymore than they certify, the workers would have to do that by a vote as I understand it. That’s the process spelled out in the NLRB website.

            I’m pretty sure he meant that the *union workers* would choose to decertify, Walt. I don’t think anyone was confused by the wording.

  5. Do Labor Unions Promote the Middle Class?
    03/06/11 – Econlog by David Henderson [edited]
    === ===
    Because unions drive wages above competitive levels, they cause some workers to lose jobs. Many of those workers would have rather worked for a lower wage, but they can’t do so legally.

    The late H. Gregg Lewis was a famous labor economist at the University of Chicago. He found that unions in their heyday, the 1950s thru the early 1960s, caused union wages to be 10-15% higher and non-union wages to be 3-4% lower.
    === ===

    Unions get credit for raising the wages of their members. This part is seen, and the unionized employees are grateful. The unseen effect is to limit competition from other workers who then have lower prospects. Unions are a form of worker monopoly, excluding some workers to benefit more privileged workers.

    • Back in 1950, the population of Detroit was 1.9 million. Today, its closer to 700,000. As a result of the exodus, you can buy a house in Detroit for less than $1,000. Only 3% of Detroit’s public school 8th graders are proficient in math–the other 97% are not. GM, C—bankrupt. Drugs…murders…violence mayhem–a typical Saturday night in Fallujah !!

      Take that you MoTown middle class!!!

  6. I started laughing as soon as i started reading the article in anticipation of the comments. I knew the leftist would have to make some excuse for the thugism and just like clockwork…..

    By the way, maybe someone could explain to me why the left is so down with “choice” when it comes to abortion but so against “choice” when it comes to joining a union or not.

  7. There is no “freeloader” problem in RTW states. Freeloading only occurs where unions insist on negotiating exclusive representation clauses in their contracts. Eliminate that, and you have no freeloader problem… Unions only represent those willing to be members in such a scenario.

  8. Yet corporate shareholders don’t have an individual say in whether their profits will be spent on political or anti-union activities.

    • Sure they do.

      If an individual shareholder doesn’t like how the company is spending their money, they can sell their shares, collect their profit, and leave.

      Kind of the corporate way of saying “screw you guys, I’m going home!”

  9. Jon Murphy: If an individual shareholder doesn’t like how the company is spending their money, they can sell their shares, collect their profit, and leave.

    The profit may be long term, and it may require selling at a discount, or abandoning a business with which the investor has a long term relationship. In any case, the worker can quit their job and go elsewhere too. Have you drawn a valid distinction?

      • Policies of corporations are generally determined by majority vote of the shareholders. Policies of unions are generally determined by majority vote of the members. Your solution to an investor who doesn’t like the political activities of a corporation was to sell, which might be contrary to what the investor would want to do otherwise. The parallel is for the worker to quit his union job and get another.

        • Right.

          The difference is, when a stockholder buys a share of, say, News Corp, he is not told “in order for you to own this share, you must join the Republican Party and pay all dues.”

          When a worker is hired at a Stop & Shop in Massachusetts, he is told “in order for you to work here, you have to join the union.”

          • Jon Murphy: The difference is, when a stockholder buys a share of, say, News Corp, he is not told “in order for you to own this share, you must join the Republican Party and pay all dues.”

            However, some of his money may be spent on political causes to which he may object. It’s decided by voting by share.

            Jon Murphy: When a worker is hired at a Stop & Shop in Massachusetts, he is told “in order for you to work here, you have to join the union.”

            Or he can convince a majority of the workers to vote against the union.

          • However, some of his money may be spent on political causes to which he may object. It’s decided by voting by share.

            None of his money will be spent on political causes to which he may object. It is not his money the company is spending; it is the company’s money they are spending.

          • Jon Murphy: None of his money will be spent on political causes to which he may object. It is not his money the company is spending; it is the company’s money they are spending.

            Um, a stockholder is a part-owner.

          • Right. But the company’s money is not his. It belongs to the company. He couldn’t take company funds and buy himself a yacht. I’m pretty sure that’s embezzling.

            What he is entitled to is the dividend of his stock (assuming there is one) and the value of the stock. Nothing else.

            Besides, there still is no parallel between this and Right to Work.

            What Right to Work is is an acknowledgement that an employment agreement is between the company and the employee and no one else. When I agree to work for an employer, I agree to provide my services in exchange for him to provide me with a paycheck and other benefits. There is no one else involved here.

            Let me flip this around: why is a union entitled to the share of a person’s labor simply because they work for the same company?

        • Jon Murphy: But the company’s money is not his. It belongs to the company.

          Actually, a stockholder does have a claim, but it is not an unlimited claim. A stockholder is a part-owner. He can even sue to protect his interests.

          Jon Murphy: What he is entitled to is the dividend of his stock (assuming there is one) and the value of the stock. Nothing else.

          That is exactly wrong. He has a say in how the money is spent. He can vote his shares. He can work with other shareholders to garner a majority. And if such a majority is found to effect change.

          Jon Murphy: What Right to Work is is an acknowledgement that an employment agreement is between the company and the employee and no one else.

          Which undermines unions, of course, which most consider an important safeguard. Countries without the right to unionize often have very poor worker protections, indeed, are often undemocratic.

          Jon Murphy: why is a union entitled to the share of a person’s labor simply because they work for the same company?

          Because by bargaining collectively, they negotiate better wages and working conditions. All workers benefit, so all workers should pay towards collective bargaining.

          • “Which undermines unions, of course, which most consider an important safeguard. Countries without the right to unionize often have very poor worker protections, indeed, are often undemocratic.”

            Phony argument. RTW laws don’t take away the right to unionize. They take away the right of forcing others into joining “the brotherhood” of mostly functionally illiterate goons.

            “Because by bargaining collectively, they negotiate better wages and working conditions. All workers benefit, so all workers should pay towards collective bargaining.”

            Unions choose to represent all workers, the NLRA doesn’t mandate it. Further, non-union workers do not receive all the benefits of the unionized, so why should they pay all the dues? Finally, representation costs are usually not even a majority of the % of union dues. Political donations(to the Democrats), union official salaries, and other items make up the rest. Why should unions get to freeload off the non-unionized by forcing them to pay the full freight of a unionized worker?

            Let me guess: because the Democrats need the money to keep their swindle machine flush.

          • Paul: RTW laws don’t take away the right to unionize.

            We didn’t say it took away the right to unionize, but it undermined unions due to the free-rider phenomenon.

            Paul: They take away the right of forcing others into joining “the brotherhood” of mostly functionally illiterate goons.

            No one is forced to join the union.

            Paul: Unions choose to represent all workers, the NLRA doesn’t mandate it.

            Unions have “the duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.” — Machinists v. Street 1961. This results in free-riding, and a deterioration of worker bargaining power.

            Minority unions are legally protected, but any negotiations they make with the employer that could impact other employees, even tangentially, would violate the NLRA.

            Paul: Political donations(to the Democrats), union official salaries, and other items make up the rest. Why should unions get to freeload off the non-unionized by forcing them to pay the full freight of a unionized worker?

            No one is forced to make political contributions. Unions can only charge employees for demonstrable bargaining costs. Political funds are optional.

          • “We didn’t say it took away the right to unionize, but it undermined unions due to the free-rider phenomenon.”

            You certainly implied it when you said, “Countries without the right to unionize often have very poor worker protections, indeed, are often undemocratic.”

            “No one is forced to join the union.”

            No RTW = forced to pay the full freight of union dues. Might as well avoid the threat of getting your ass kicked and tires slashed and join if you’re paying anyway.

            Retail Clerks v. Lion Dry Goods, the Act’s coverage “is not limited to labor organizations which are entitled to recognition as exclusive bargaining agents of employees … ‘Members only’ contracts have long been recognized.”

            “Unions have “the duty fairly and equitably to represent all employees of the craft or class, union and nonunion.” — Machinists v. Street 1961.”

            Justice William Brennan wrote in Retail Clerks v. Lion Dry Goods, 1962: “Therefore, it appears that unions are not required by law to enter into exclusive
            bargaining agreements with their employers, and that if they wanted to they could
            form member-only bargaining agreements in which they only represent their
            members, only their members are required to pay union dues, their contracts only
            pertain to their members, and other people are allowed to work for the employer independent of the union.”

          • Paul: No RTW = forced to pay the full freight of union dues.

            Yes, if you benefit from union efforts, you should pay your share of the the costs of those efforts.

            Paul: Justice William Brennan wrote in Retail Clerks v. Lion Dry Goods, 1962

            Don’t see where he wrote that in the opinion.

            As we already mentioned, minority unions are legally protected, but any negotiations they make with the employer that could impact other employees, even tangentially, would violate the NLRA.

          • “Yes, if you benefit from union efforts, you should pay your share of the the costs of those efforts.”

            Federal law allows unions the special power to create “exclusive representation” agreements with employers. Unions choose not to do so, so they can hurl around the “freeloader” smokescreen, and so they can herd all new workers into agreements that might work against their interests, like seniority based layoffs. Unions hate the idea of succeeding on your own merit, else who needs the union?

            :.. any negotiations they make with the employer that could impact other employees, even tangentially, would violate the NLRA.”

            Not if the union chooses to go the exclusive representation route. But even if you were correct, that would tell me the NLRA should be thrown out. What say the unions to that?

          • Yes, if you benefit from union efforts, you should pay your share of the the costs of those efforts.

            No. If we haven’t asked the union to make those efforts we shouldn’t be required to pay for them. Not joining the union is as much a positive choice as is joining the union. If we choose to NOT join the union, we are expressing our desire to NOT be blessed with the results of union efforts, and can’t *legitimately* be required to pay for either the efforts or the results.

          • Paul: Federal law allows unions the special power to create “exclusive representation” agreements with employers.

            An exclusive representation is where the union garners majority support and represents all the workers.

            Paul: Unions choose not to do so, so they can hurl around the “freeloader” smokescreen, and so they can herd all new workers into agreements that might work against their interests, like seniority based layoffs.

            Your point seems confused.

          • Ron H: If we haven’t asked the union to make those efforts we shouldn’t be required to pay for them.

            It’s like any other democratic process. People vote.

          • Z: “No one is forced to join the union.

            That statement is naive at best. apparently you have never worked in a union shop.

            As Paul mentioned, if you don’t mind being beaten up or having your tires slashed because you are seen as a “free rider”, then no, we guess no one is forced to join the union.

          • It’s like any other democratic process. People vote.

            What nonsense. A democratic process that forces people to pay for things they don’t want is tyranny.

            Democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for lunch.

            If you are part of a work group that always goes out to lunch together and a majority votes to have Mexican food every day – something that you don’t like – do you think you should be allowed to make a separate choice apart from the group, or give up your membership in that group?

            Of course not. You would force down those enchiladas with a smile on your face, even though they made you gag, right?

          • Ron H: A democratic process that forces people to pay for things they don’t want is tyranny.

            Sure. Work is freedom. Two plus two equals five. Democracy is tyranny.

    • “The profit may be long term, and it may require selling at a discount”

      No, Zachriel. Expected future profits are the basis for current stock prices.

      • An investor may believe that holding the stock is worth more than selling it, that is, the sales price to others is less than what the particular investor believes the stock is potentially worth. In other words, all else the same, the investor would hold rather than sell.

        • Zachriel,

          Anything anyone can possibly know about a certain stock that is not an insider should be reflected in the current stock price–that’s a market. Each investor does have his or her own short-term and long-term strategies (I wish I could get some of my wrong ones back).

          • Walt Greenway: Anything anyone can possibly know about a certain stock that is not an insider should be reflected in the current stock price–that’s a market.

            What is reflected in the current stock price is the average of individual evaluation of its value. The reason stocks are bought and sold is because people have different opinions on the value of stocks.

  10. Mark J Perry: RTW states are creating jobs at almost three times (2.16 / 1.05 * 1.38) the pace as in forced unionism states.

    And yet Right-to-Work states tend to have lower wages, higher rates of poverty, worse schools, and generally fewer economic opportunities.

    • And yet Right-to-Work states tend to have lower wages, higher rates of poverty

      Those things are affected by the cost of living. When adjusting for the cost of living in RTW states vs Forced Union States, there is no statistical difference in the levels of poverty (14.0% poverty rate in RTW vs. 13.8% in Forced Union).

      Also, the poverty range in Forced Union states is quite wide. In Forced Union states, the poverty rate ranges from 9.2% (Vermont) to 23.5% (California). In RTW states, the range is from 8.4% (Iowa) to 19.8% (Arizona). This doesn’t necessarily mean anything in and of itself, but I thought it was interesting to share.

      All this data comes from the Census.

      worse schools

      Has way more factors than whether mommy and daddy can choose to join a union.

      generally fewer economic opportunities

      RTW states generate more jobs than forced union (See Dr. Perry’s various posts on the matter), and also have higher growth in establishments (new firms) than forced union states.

      Oh, please note that I included Michigan as a Forced Union state for this analysis. The RTW bill was just passed yesterday and the numbers I use are from last year.

      • John,

        “In RTW states, the range is from 8.4% (Iowa) to 19.8% (Arizona).”

        I live in Az. Other variables are at play here: “The three states with the highest income inequality also all share a border with Mexico. But what about New York? Or Georgia? Or Illinois (which is the sixth-most-unequal state)? They are all hundreds of miles away from Mexico.

        Well, it turns out that all of those states have huge illegal immigrant populations too. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, every one of the top five unequal states also is among the top 10 states with high illegal immigrant populations.”

        http://washingtonexaminer.com/conn-carroll-the-income-inequality-factor-liberals-cant-talk-about/article/2515360?utm_source=Washington%20Examiner:%20Opinion%20Digest%20-%2012/10/2012&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Washington%20Examiner:%20Opinion%20Digest#.UMinhqz4K09

        • Oh, I agree with you Paul. I did not mean to insinuate that the poverty rates were caused by RTW or anything like that. I was refuting Zach’s point that RTW states have higher poverty rates (statistically, they are similar).

          That said, I do find it interesting that the range for poverty in Forced Union states is wider than that of RTW states. It probably doesn’t mean anything. Just something of note.

          • Comparing poverty rates from state to state is a meaningless exercise. The cost of living in Paris, TX, is about 40% of the cost of living in San Francisco, CA. Yet the Census Bureau uses the same poverty threshhold for the two cities.

          • Not in the new method, the SPM, which is what I used. The SPM accounts for cost of living differences among states, and other discrepancies that can affect what “poverty” really is.

          • I forget not everyone has the same information as me :-) Yeah, the SPM is brand new this year.

            Unfair! You have an unfair advantage as an insider. We must work to “level the playing field” by limiting your access to information where possible and by forbidding you to act on information where it can’t be limited.

            I think an “uptick” rule or an outright ban on shorting would do the trick. :)

          • Yeah, punish me because I read the GD newspaper. That’ll work :-P

            And there we have it – by your own admission you can READ. Ninety three percent of Detroit 8th graders are unable to read the GD newspaper, so they are at an unfair disadvantage. To correct that problem, you will be receiving your text-distorting glasses from the Handicapper general’s office in approximately 3 days.

        • Lawrence Reed (President of Foundation for Economic Education) had a nice quip on Facebook this morning.

          He said: “The argument against public education is that children would fall through the cracks in the private sector. 7% of Detroit students are proficient in literacy. Does anyone believe the private sector would let 93% of students fall through the cracks?”

  11. America’s hour of organized labor, hijacked by goons and thugs who destroyed every industry (including the education industry) that they ever touched, is finally coming to an overdue end.

    U.A.W. = U Ain’t Workin’

  12. Anytime I see leftists bringing up AZ and wages and so on I have to laugh, as I have lived in AZ for twenty years now and there are a lot of reasons for wage levels being what they are in AZ, and they don’t have to do with Right To Work versus Forced Unionism. The primary reasons why wages are generally lower in a state like AZ is the fact that literally millions of people flock here, from other states, to live, because they WANT TO and they LIKE IT HERE. That means there is an endless supply of labor, all of whom would rather live in a place with decent home prices, lower than average state income taxes, real estate taxes, etc and still enjoy a super quality of life. You simply HAVE to PAY people more to live in crappy places like Detroit, or Chicago, or the list goes on and on. It all comes down to supply and demand, and there is a large supply of people willing to live and work in a good state like AZ. Now, another reason for lower overall wage levels here, is the continuous flood of illegal underground labor which has had a profound downward pressure on the overall wage levels. The construction crews here that were putting up homes by the hundreds a day, before the collapse, were notoriously hiring illegals (who were not making peanuts, they were easily making $20-30 a day by the way) and those jobs were being taken from legal citizens, who ended up having to get a new (lower paying job oftentimes.) The strange (but not surprising thing) about union leadership is that they have been pushing for an EVEN GREATER flood of illegal underground labor, due to the power/influence it brings the LEFT. They could care less about actual wages, about citizens versus illegals, etc, the unions care only about flooding more labor into the country which gives their preferred political side more power.

    • Bertus

      The construction crews here that were putting up homes by the hundreds a day, before the collapse, were notoriously hiring illegals (who were not making peanuts, they were easily making $20-30 a day by the way) and those jobs were being taken from legal citizens, who ended up having to get a new (lower paying job oftentimes.)

      I was enjoying your comment and the point you were making about supply and demand, until I reached the part I’ve quoted above, at which point you apparently believe that the law of supply and demand no longer operate as expected.

      Those millions you describe flocking to AZ because they want to, and providing an endless supply of labor which keeps wages low *includes* those illegals you mention. If they are not making peanuts, as you put it, then the market wage for that type of work must be high due to a limited supply of workers, not an abundant supply. Why would citizens not compete for these good paying jobs instead of accepting a lower paying job elsewhere?

      The usual complaint about illegals is that they will work for lower pay than others, thus depressing the wage rate. That doesn’t seem to be the case you are describing.

  13. Hooray! Now Michigan’s wages will fall even more. What a great day for the American middle class, the race to the bottom is picking up steam! Meanwhile Corporate Profits after tax just hit 11% of GDP – a new record high!

    • “Hooray! Now Michigan’s wages will fall even more”

      Good. Hopefully this is the first step in destroying the government unions and the rest of the Democrat party’s money laundering scheme.

          • John,

            “reduced union = lower wages, and lower wages = less consumption).”

            Or reduced union = more productivity = lower prices.

            In the public sector, reduced union = lower spending = lower taxes.

      • Paul,

        Or re-energize the union movement and fill the Democrat’s coffers for the next election. This is not over by a long shot. Gov. Snyder’s earlier remark that RTW was too contentious might prove to be an epiphany.

        • “This is not over by a long shot.”

          Oh, I agree. I forget who said “there are no lost causes, because there are no won causes.” The right not to join your brotherhood of goons won the day, but unions still have boatloads of cash, corrupt politicians in the highest offices, and a monopoly of violence and intimidation. You may yet succeed in chasing whatever’s left of industry out of the once great but now rotting city of Detroit.

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