The Union Job Killing Machine

March 12, 2011 at 7:03 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Several years ago when I ran for the Michigan House – one of my issues I  was running on was making Michigan a Right-To-Work state…as I watched many of the automotive jobs leaving the state for Right-To-Work states in the south (states that didn’t have unions).  Of course, in Michigan that was blasphemy and unions and their cronies dumped 10’s of thousands in contributions into my opponent campaign to defeat me. Of course, not taking any large contributions (I was going to clean up politics and that meant not being in anyone’s pocket) I lost.

In the course of the election, I learned a lot about the unions and most glaring point I found is that unions have outlived their usefulness. Back when they were founded they helped workers by improving the horrible safety and working conditions Americans had to endure.  Unions at that time did what the government should have done.

But now, the government regulates safety and work conditions and the unions still help the workers/members while simultaneously screwing the people they serve, lining their pockets with ill-conceived loot, while acting as puppet-masters to the Democrat party.

And for the business owners, they have to deal with government regulations and union rules. A double anti-business whammy.   The way I view it, unions are just another money making enterprise that is an obstacle to an efficiently operated business.  If a employer doesn’t treat its workers right – the workers can quit.  If the worker doesn’t do his/her job, the employer can fire them. And that is they way is should be.  But, if you are a union shop – everything that makes business sense in the workplace is thrown out the window.  And that bottom 10% of workers that Jack Welsh say’s most business can get rid of – well, they can’t be gotten rid of in a union shop.

How they harm the worker is that they only allowed them to learn one trade and do one job.  Not a very good path in today’s work environment as most workers will have several jobs and careers over the course of a lifetime.  And those poor union saps have one skill and if that skill is taken over by technology (we will get to that later) or China – the worker should consider moving back in with their parents and finding work at 7-11 or picking strawberry’s because that is all you they will be qualified to do…if even that.

Union Priorities…

The unions care about themselves first and have done a very good job at taking care of themselves both legally and illegally.  Legally, they make a ton of cash.  I personally know a union security guard that works at one of the large locals, is in his 70’s and was given a job as a security guard paying $85K a year after he got out of federal prison for stealing from his companies pension fund. I guess his experience in stealing got him the job.

Or the lady that was featured on the front page of the Detroit News several years ago who was in her 80’s and didn’t want to retire from her $85,000 a year jobs as a janitor at GM.  The only place a janitor should be making that kind of money is one who is sweeping floors at Chernobyl nuclear power plant., but not at GM (and our politicians bailed them out…and you wonder why they went broke?).

I won’t even get into the quality of work aspect from workers who have little of no incentive to do a good job with their (basically) guaranteed job for life if in the union without being able to be fired.  At one large Ford plant in Detroit, on any given sunny day, union workers just don’t show up to work (and don’t even bother calling in sick) because they know that it takes (short of killing someone at work) you won’t get fired (or demoted…because, just like communism – everyone is equal). Would you say that the government union workers do a better quality job then their automotive counterparts?  I think not.

The mob…

Are the union is still run by the mob around the country?  To think the the U.S., state and local governments have rooted out the mobs influence (and running) of the unions is absurd. What is even more absurd is to think that the mob has gotten out of the lucrative union business.

Each year, over a hundred union officials nationwide are indicted for numerous crimes.  In 2008, there were a 131 indictments and 103 convictions (most of them are for stealing from their own membership and the rest for just being union scumbags charged with other various other wrongdoings).  The government’s Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) reports  the restitution of $91,524,704 has been paid or ordered to be paid to defrauded unions and other parties since 2001.  And those are the ones that got caught!  To read more go to: http://www.dol.gov/olms/regs/compliance/highlights_08.html. Here are some of the union highlights:

  • Guilty Plea for Forgery and Theft of $454,406 from Transit Union
    An investigation by OLMS led to the indictment and conviction of Thomas Wallace, former Financial Secretary- Treasurer of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Division (Div) 757 in Portland, Oregon.
  • IBEW Local 163 Suffers More than $256,000 Loss – Joseph Capece, former business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) AFL-CIO Local 163 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. used the union’s debit and credit cards to make cash withdrawals and pay personal charges at the union’s expense. Capece was sentenced to six months imprisonment on March 18, 2008.
  • Asbestos Workers Business Agent Embezzles $829,762 from Union and Training Funds
    John Dabronzo, former Business Agent and Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC) Administrator of Asbestos Workers Local 89, Trenton, New Jersey, pled guilty to an information charging him with one count of embezzlement of union funds.
  • AFSCME Employee Pleads Guilty and Sentenced for Embezzlement
    Zona Albritton, former Manager of General Services for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), pled guilty to one count of 4 embezzling $75,446 from the union between December 2003 and April 2004. Albritton was responsible for hiring contractors to paint and install carpeting in AFSCME’s headquarters building in Washington, DC.

And the list goes on.

Back in the day, when a person decided to go to work for the government they knew they would not be paid as much as their private sector counterparts.  They also knew that the pay discrepancy would be addressed through more lucrative health and pension benefits than if they went to work in the private sector.  But today, that is not the case.  Union workers get the same great benefits and now they are also being paid the same wages as private sector workers do.  For more information and some interesting charts showing the widening gap go to: http://tinyurl.com/ycdy8xo.

The bottom line is this: unions are costing us jobs to foreign competitors as they can hire 20 workers to our one, while costing us in higher taxes that are inevitable since they have bled the country and state coffers dry in their pension obligations and the only way to make up for the shortfall is to raise taxes to pay for them.

The ironic thing is the unions do what they are supposed to do (and do it well) – get as much as they can for their members.  It’s our spineless government officials, politicians (and corporations) who have caved into their demands for more, more, more.

Until we get some leadership with balls that will stand up to the unions and say, “we ain’t going to take it anymore” and make every state a “Right to Work” non union controlled state, we are in for a very bad economic future.

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