It’s time to bust the unions

Wisconsin yard sign

I have great respect for teachers. I really do. Especially those grade school and high school teachers who, in addition to teaching, have to act as baby sitters and disciplinarians for disinterested students who would rather be someplace else.

That said, I think Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker should fire the state’s teachers and bust their union. Then he can rehire qualified non-union teachers. Also, if it were legal, I’d love to see him arrest all the demonstrators who are not Wisconsin residents and charge them with trespassing.

The teachers’ union contends that its primary concern is the kids. Yet they’ve stayed away from work for two weeks to demonstrate at the state capitol. Their concern is not the kids but the union’s right to collectively bargain for better pay and benefits and to protect the jobs of even the bad teachers. I’ve seen the teachers’ union in action in Denver and it isn’t pretty.

I have nothing good to say about unions. They coerce employers with threats of strikes. They extort wages, benefits, and tenure beyond what the job market and economy dictate. They collect compulsory dues and use the money to buy political favors. I once held a position that I was warned was normally a union job and that if word got back to the union, I could lose the job and/or possibly end up with a vandalized car. Or I could be forced to join the union to keep the job, or have union dues deducted from my paycheck even if I didn’t join the union. I had no interest in the union, and yet they could have taken my job or a chunk of my paycheck if they wanted to. Great recruiting technique, that.

Unions served a purpose decades ago, before laws were passed to protect workers. Today they are a disruptive anachronism representing only 11.9% of the American workforce. It’s time to end them.

6 thoughts on “It’s time to bust the unions

  1. I’m an old fart with a long list of anecdotal union experiences that I’ve accumulated in over 50 years worth of employee/employer relationships and I’m usually incited to highlight some of them in any description of union outrages, however…

    Good job, Pied.

  2. Well, I’m going to disagree with you. I think this is nothing but political recalcitrance on Walker’s part. I also feel that if he gets his way, it sets a precedent for union-busting across the board. Knowing what people are dealing with in the U.S. workforce, and the predominant, exploitative sentiment of everyone from taxpayers to corporations with respect to labor, we cannot afford to put more power in the hands of those who have wrecked this country. Workers have it bad enough here. Destroying unions would further increase the gap between rich and poor and play right into the hands of Wall Street fat cats and petty office tyrants who already take the piggish attitude that the world is their feeding trough. When middle managers can fire someone for the first time they are two minutes late because there are 100 other poor schmucks waiting in line, we are in a sorry state indeed. I support Wisconsin teachers and all unions 100%.

  3. Also, most states are now employment “at will.” That means you cannot be coerced into joining a union, you are free to seek employment without pressure to join a union or automatic enrollment in one, and you cannot be turned down for a job if you don’t belong to one. The laws have changed greatly since you retired, my friend. “At will” also means that your company can just fire you, for no reason at all, with no notice at all, and no compensation at all–and given the current exploitative mindset, it’s happening a lot of people. The companies then have the nerve to try to fight unemployment. The American workplace has become a vicious, vicious place. If anything, now is the time for all labor to stand together in solidarity.

    You know I adore you.

... and that's my two cents