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Author Topic: Unions Explained  (Read 2952 times)
Jon
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February 27, 2012, 06:40:57 PM
 #21

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

I don't see a problem. Maybe the union is overvaluing their labor in this case. If I am willing to work for less, why shouldn't I?

Afraid that I will out-compete you and take your job?

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 06:43:09 PM
 #22

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

Of course it can't be voluntary.  The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

There would be if the union provided valuable services, such as easier contract negotiation for employees, took care of its own employee benefits so the employer didn't have to bother with that, or provided better employees by being a pool that goes out to find the best qualified workers, and quickly got rid of those dragging them down. An employer would gladly pick a union with all its services over nonunion employees then, and the union would have plenty of negotiating power.

Actually, that's a rather blatant example of what's wrong with them. Unions should be exclusionary, something you have to work and fight for to get into, as opposed to compulsory, that people are both fighting, and fighting to get out of.

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February 27, 2012, 06:44:00 PM
 #23

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

I don't see a problem. Maybe the union is overvaluing their labor in this case. If I am willing to work for less, why shouldn't I?

Take all the money you don't want out of the fat paycheck your union negotiated for you and give it to your boss.  

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February 27, 2012, 06:45:53 PM
 #24

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

Of course it can't be voluntary.  The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

There would be if the union provided valuable services, such as easier contract negotiation for employees, took care of its own employee benefits so the employer didn't have to bother with that, or provided better employees by being a pool that goes out to find the best qualified workers, and quickly got rid of those dragging them down. An employer would gladly pick a union with all its services over nonunion employees then, and the union would have plenty of negotiating power.

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

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February 27, 2012, 06:48:29 PM
 #25

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

I don't see a problem. Maybe the union is overvaluing their labor in this case. If I am willing to work for less, why shouldn't I?

Take all the money you don't want out of the fat paycheck your union negotiated for you and give it to your boss.  

I made an individual contract with my employer. It was his money that he is now giving to me. The history of the contract is irrelevant to me.

It's not my fault the Union doesn't have a sustainable business model. Maybe they should be the ones adapting.

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 06:51:25 PM
 #26

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

Of course it can't be voluntary.  The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

There would be if the union provided valuable services, such as easier contract negotiation for employees, took care of its own employee benefits so the employer didn't have to bother with that, or provided better employees by being a pool that goes out to find the best qualified workers, and quickly got rid of those dragging them down. An employer would gladly pick a union with all its services over nonunion employees then, and the union would have plenty of negotiating power

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

My best interest is having employment. If I can take the job of an organized worker and put money in my pocket, why should I be forced to only work at a higher wage and remain unemployed?

To me that's truly being screwed over.

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 06:55:18 PM
 #27

...snip...
So organized labor forces and its respective dues can't be voluntary if the whole industry benefits from their work?

...snip...

Of course it can't be voluntary.  The whole idea of a union is that its 100% of the workers and if the employer is free to replace the unionised workers, there won't be a union.

There would be if the union provided valuable services, such as easier contract negotiation for employees, took care of its own employee benefits so the employer didn't have to bother with that, or provided better employees by being a pool that goes out to find the best qualified workers, and quickly got rid of those dragging them down. An employer would gladly pick a union with all its services over nonunion employees then, and the union would have plenty of negotiating power

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

My best interest is having employment. If I can take the job of an organized worker and put money in my pocket, why should I be forced to only work at a higher wage and remain unemployed?

To me that's truly being screwed over.

Because unless you have unique skills that mean you can't be replaced or you want to see your wages driven to the minimum, you need a union. 

I think you posted in another thread that US workers should reduce their wages to the level of child labourers in the developing world.  That's a legitimate viewpoint.  But its also legitimate to say that you don't want to be quite that poor and form a union.

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February 27, 2012, 06:57:13 PM
 #28

...snip...

My best interest is having employment. If I can take the job of an organized worker and put money in my pocket, why should I be forced to only work at a higher wage and remain unemployed?

To me that's truly being screwed over.

Don't do it then.  Take all the extra money you don't want and give it to your boss. 

Jon
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February 27, 2012, 07:00:26 PM
 #29

...snip...

My best interest is having employment. If I can take the job of an organized worker and put money in my pocket, why should I be forced to only work at a higher wage and remain unemployed?

To me that's truly being screwed over.

Don't do it then.  Take all the extra money you don't want and give it to your boss. 

You're failing to understand that employment is a scarce resource. Under sustainable circumstances, unless I offer a competitive wage, I will not have a job. The employer has to make profit to sustain.

Do you believe a organized worker is entitled to their job even if somebody can offer the same quality of workmanship for a lower rate?

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 07:03:31 PM
 #30

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

Question: what do you believe the wage minimum is? I.e. how do you believe a minimum is determined?

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February 27, 2012, 07:09:41 PM
 #31

...snip...

My best interest is having employment. If I can take the job of an organized worker and put money in my pocket, why should I be forced to only work at a higher wage and remain unemployed?

To me that's truly being screwed over.

Don't do it then.  Take all the extra money you don't want and give it to your boss. 

You're failing to understand that employment is a scarce resource. Under sustainable circumstances, unless I offer a competitive wage, I will not have a job. The employer has to make profit to sustain.

Do you believe a organized worker is entitled to their job even if somebody can offer the same quality of workmanship for a lower rate?

You are confusing separate issues.

1. Is the wage competitive?  
2. Is the job unionised?

If the employer has made the wages deal, its competitive.  Its not your job to tell him he pays you too much.  So that issue is off topic.

What you are arguing is that you should be able to undercut the unionised worker.  And that he in turn should be able to undercut you.  And that eventually you both will be on starvation wages and you are arguing that's a good thing.

Not everyone wants to live that way.  I know some US states like Alabama have that kind of system but even they depend on the Federal government to subsidise them.  Rich competitive countries have well paid unionised workers.


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February 27, 2012, 07:10:55 PM
 #32

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

Question: what do you believe the wage minimum is? I.e. how do you believe a minimum is determined?

Starvation.  If you can afford 1 calorie more than it takes to feed a single man, you are earning more than the minimum an employer can get away with.

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February 27, 2012, 07:15:15 PM
 #33

At least in the first-world, not many people are willing to negotiate to wages that entail border-line starvation, Hawker. You can't honestly believe otherwise.

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 07:23:28 PM
 #34

At least in the first-world, not many people are willing to negotiate to wages that entail border-line starvation, Hawker. You can't honestly believe otherwise.

In a truly free market, where there is no union, wages will be pushed down and down. 

To put this in context, since 1980, the US private sector has been de-unionising.  The result is that US workers have seen a real terms fall in their standard of living during a 30 year period of huge economic growth. 

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February 27, 2012, 07:27:24 PM
 #35

At least in the first-world, not many people are willing to negotiate to wages that entail border-line starvation, Hawker. You can't honestly believe otherwise.

In a truly free market, where there is no union, wages will be pushed down and down.  

To put this in context, since 1980, the US private sector has been de-unionising.  The result is that US workers have seen a real terms fall in their standard of living during a 30 year period of huge economic growth.  

Wages have increased. Employment has decreased.

The cost-of-living has gone sky high. It's not wages to be blamed but our whole controlled economic paradigm and the restrictions placed upon innovation. It's not a problem to work for only $50 a month, if your food costs are only $10 or so a month.

In a truly free market, businesses will compete for the best workers with rising wages that contrast with lower-quality workers that will work for less.

Please keep in mind that truly poor and starving people don't buy much. That creates little profit for businesses. You're implying people are irrational animals and that only a wise, virtuous elite can show us the way.

The Communists say, equal labour entitles man to equal enjoyment. No, equal labour does not entitle you to it, but equal enjoyment alone entitles you to equal enjoyment. Enjoy, then you are entitled to enjoyment. But, if you have laboured and let the enjoyment be taken from you, then – ‘it serves you right.’ If you take the enjoyment, it is your right.
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February 27, 2012, 07:37:14 PM
 #36

At least in the first-world, not many people are willing to negotiate to wages that entail border-line starvation, Hawker. You can't honestly believe otherwise.

In a truly free market, where there is no union, wages will be pushed down and down.  

To put this in context, since 1980, the US private sector has been de-unionising.  The result is that US workers have seen a real terms fall in their standard of living during a 30 year period of huge economic growth.  

Wages have increased. Employment has decreased.

The cost-of-living has gone sky high. It's not wages to be blamed but our whole controlled economic paradigm and the restrictions placed upon innovation. It's not a problem to work for only $50 a month, if your food costs are only $10 or so a month.

In a truly free market, businesses will compete for the best workers with rising wages that contrast with lower-quality workers that will work for less.

Please keep in mind that truly poor and starving people don't buy much. That creates little profit for businesses. You're implying people are irrational animals and that only a wise, virtuous elite can show us the way.

Sorry but you are factually wrong.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/16/news/economy/middle_class/index.htm

Look at the blue line.  Wages have been stagnant in the US since before 1980.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/14/opinion/14brooks.html

"The number of business start-ups per capita has been falling steadily for the past three decades. Workers’ share of national income has been declining since 1983. Male wages have been stagnant for about 40 years. The American working class — those without a college degree — is being decimated, economically and socially."


You can search around - the fall in the percentage of unionised workers and the fall in wages are strongly correlated.  

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February 27, 2012, 07:47:26 PM
 #37

Um - the union does not provide a service to the employer.  The employers best interest is served by screwing wages down to the minimum.  The workers best interest is served by not being screwed.  The union exists to help the worker.

Question: what do you believe the wage minimum is? I.e. how do you believe a minimum is determined?

Starvation.  If you can afford 1 calorie more than it takes to feed a single man, you are earning more than the minimum an employer can get away with.

Why would someone work for only 1 extra calorie a day if a competing company can offer more then? Are you essentially throwing away the entire competition for valuable skills in a free market away, or believe that everyone, even those with useless skills, should get a high wage?

In a truly free market, where there is no union, wages will be pushed down and down.  

Do you believe the price of everything, like milk, bread, clothing, haircuts, etc will be pushed down and down too, or is there a"union" of sorts keeping prices of those things art a certain level? Or do you not consider labor to the the same as any other valuable good or service?

I'm trying to understand if there is a cognitive dissonance somewhere.

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February 27, 2012, 08:04:47 PM
 #38

Sorry but you are factually wrong.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/16/news/economy/middle_class/index.htm

Look at the blue line.  Wages have been stagnant in the US since before 1980. 

Correlation <> Causation

There are two explanations for that blue line:

1) The rich have been purposefully pushing down employees wages, stealing from their work instead of sharing the wealth fairly.

2) Due to technological advancements in robotics, computers, and communications, each worker has been able to become MUCH more productive without exerting any extra effort. Due to this, companies are able to create and sell much more for the same amount of human labor input, thus those who own those companies (including investors and the 1%) are able to get a lot more in profits, while the employees are still being paid for the same level of labor effort they were providing before.

Hawker
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February 27, 2012, 08:32:33 PM
 #39

Sorry but you are factually wrong.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/16/news/economy/middle_class/index.htm

Look at the blue line.  Wages have been stagnant in the US since before 1980.

Correlation <> Causation

There are two explanations for that blue line:

1) The rich have been purposefully pushing down employees wages, stealing from their work instead of sharing the wealth fairly.

2) Due to technological advancements in robotics, computers, and communications, each worker has been able to become MUCH more productive without exerting any extra effort. Due to this, companies are able to create and sell much more for the same amount of human labor input, thus those who own those companies (including investors and the 1%) are able to get a lot more in profits, while the employees are still being paid for the same level of labor effort they were providing before.

Both are true, though in fact the second should say "same wages for more hours" in the case of male workers.  If you are interested in modern libertarian thinking, Tyler Cowan's "Great Stagnation" adds a lot of data as to what is driving wages down and why there is no relief in sight.

Since we are agreed on the facts, can you now see why I regard your saying you want to get the union wage but not pay the union due as freeloading?

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February 27, 2012, 09:39:54 PM
 #40

Sorry but you are factually wrong.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/16/news/economy/middle_class/index.htm

Look at the blue line.  Wages have been stagnant in the US since before 1980.

Correlation <> Causation

There are two explanations for that blue line:

1) The rich have been purposefully pushing down employees wages, stealing from their work instead of sharing the wealth fairly.

2) Due to technological advancements in robotics, computers, and communications, each worker has been able to become MUCH more productive without exerting any extra effort. Due to this, companies are able to create and sell much more for the same amount of human labor input, thus those who own those companies (including investors and the 1%) are able to get a lot more in profits, while the employees are still being paid for the same level of labor effort they were providing before.

Both are true, though in fact the second should say "same wages for more hours" in the case of male workers.  If you are interested in modern libertarian thinking, Tyler Cowan's "Great Stagnation" adds a lot of data as to what is driving wages down and why there is no relief in sight.

Since we are agreed on the facts, can you now see why I regard your saying you want to get the union wage but not pay the union due as freeloading?

That's the thing, I don't want union wage. Moreso, the union wage is still lower than my personal value. I'm only here until I finish my degree. And yes, I understand, they did stuff for me. Stuff I didn't ask for, and didn't need, and then forced me to pay for it. Stuff like forcing the state to raise everyone's salary by 3% when the state is struggling financially, and then forcing everyone to pay monthly dues that used to be voluntary, which add up to a sizeable chunk of that 3% for many employees, and then since the state will have to make up that money later anyway, creating a situation where everyone will eventually be forced to pay for that raise with state taxes. My state is living on borrowed money right now. So in the end, all they got me was nothing.

Also, can you understand why we think a lot of union employees are freeloading?

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