U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 08-10-2018, 08:39 AM
 
27,552 posts, read 45,007,788 times
Reputation: 14073

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coldjensens View Post
Various family members are or have been union members during the past ten years. They universally dislike them. They say they take your money and do nothing for you. Instead they make deals with owner's/management/government which increase the union's power but does little or nothing for the workers. They also seem to universally take advantage of part time workers, throwing them to the wolves on order to get something popular with the full timers (who get to vote - part timers do not). It seems the unions ar just as guilty of taking advantage of the little guy as management/government.
I am not going to say that unions can't be mismanaged--just like any business
But members of Unions have the right to VOTE for their leadership
People who work for a company and get screwed over by bad decision making and selfish behavior on the part of management or the board certainly don't have the same opportunity

Have your watched the HBO series "The Wire"
Second season revolves around a union representing dock workers in the Baltimore harbor
It is insightful for how the workers' are represented
How the union leaders were trying to help the workers but made some bad choices in the name of "good" and how the bottom line has come to rule almost every aspect of the American way of life=even the drug trade

Read some of Barbara Ehrenreich's non-fiction about the working life in America--her first one is about Reagan's era I think...
Insightful about the breakdown of unions as well as the creeping political divide in America, the rising tide of corporate criminality, the growing separation between the uber wealthy and the rest of America...

Unions in the beginning of the 1900 into the 40s and 50s gave America much of its social justice
Trying to achieve fair pay, benefits, better working conditions--even "Labor Day" is the celebration of the working class in America
Most people are happy to take the upside and just criticize the bad...
Many people in right-to-work states don't understand that is a way for big business and small business to take advantage of workers on almost any level or field of endeavor...
Right to work really means right to fire indiscriminately and for no legitimate reason w/o recompense
Often leaving those displaced workers to be dealt with by public services of the local/state government or charities
Adding to EVERYONE's tax bill vs the business who cut them loose and moved on to more profitable ways offshore or by using contract workers or in other ways...

How many times has management taken pay cuts to sustain a business that is struggling???
In a small business there may not be a choice because the pipeline from intake to profitability is shorter
But in company like US Steel, Whirlpool, GE???
Never happening...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:03 AM
 
Location: NJ
22,729 posts, read 28,597,649 times
Reputation: 14640
Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishtom29 View Post
Unions are part of the market, which indeed, how could they be anything but part of the market?
that isnt entirely accurate. sure, they are "part of the market" but there are laws in place to protect them and when those protections arent there; they are struggling to remain part of the market. so it is fair to question whether or not those laws are reasonable.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:06 AM
 
27,552 posts, read 45,007,788 times
Reputation: 14073
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
they were part of the market and a big part at one time . they forced petty manufacturing skills to earn far more than the job was worth . today things have leveled off to where for the most part non skilled labor positions no longer are paid what they were .

people talk about losing those good paying jobs in manufacturing but most of those jobs were paying more than they were worth and so anyone waiting for them to return is chasing a ghost
That's your opinion that they were "paid more than they were worth"
Sometimes that might be true in the sense that lower-skilled workers were well paid and received benefits when their contribution to overall productivity or profitability might be viewed as a "drag" on the bottom line but that is a decision that MANAGEMENT made about the value of a person's contribution

Check the growth of management's wages/benefits vs the cost of workers' wages/benefits and you can see the disparity between CEO type pay and that of the average worker in a company over the past 40 years
There is no comparison
CEO/higher admin pay has gone off the chart while average workers' wages have had little to no real growth

And you can't make me believe that Jeff Immelt at GE was paid "fairly" for running that company into the ground
There are so many examples of management bleeding companies and taking advantage of workers to benefit themselves and stock prices/share holders who aren't the workers creating that wealth...

It used to be that taking advantage happened with unskilled workers--janitorial, service workers--but times have changed and now skilled white collar workers have been joined the ranks of unskilled/blue collar ones taken advantage of by management because companies use skilled personnel now--college degreed-workers--in IT or finance or health care--or pretty much any other company doing significant amount of business--

But just like Disney cut the legs off hundreds of their internal IT workers a while back to hire H1b workers they contracted for, ANY worker can be put in the same position as "unskilled" if management decides they are a cost drag...

Check the history of Enron--there were union workers likely employed there but it wasn't the union workers that raided company coffers, ran the company in the ground through bad/illegal decision making, and had corporate officers go to prison
Just like Aubrey McClendon w/Chesapeake Energy--
It wasn't the union employees or contracts that destroyed that company
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:12 AM
 
27,552 posts, read 45,007,788 times
Reputation: 14073
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
that isnt entirely accurate. sure, they are "part of the market" but there are laws in place to protect them and when those protections arent there; they are struggling to remain part of the market. so it is fair to question whether or not those laws are reasonable.
The recent ruling which allows workers to BENEFIT from union contracts and yet not have to pay toward the cost of union overhead/dues is trying to have your cake and eat it too

I know people who work in places with union jobs where there are non-union workers
People working the same type of job will not be satisfied to see union-workers get benefits they don't yet they won't join the union...
That is assinine
Work to make union leadership better if you think it is bad but don't expect to be carried because they pay the price you won't...

It is like someone wanting to fly first class when they bought a coach ticket just because everyone is on the same plane and get there at the same time...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:13 AM
 
2,252 posts, read 1,395,217 times
Reputation: 4906
Why would management take pay cuts? The value of their labor that they can get elsewhere hasn’t changed. When companies freeze bonuses or cut pay across the board, it’s terrible business. You end up losing your good employees to the competition. Cutting employee pay of your most valuable employees would be the start of an even worse downward spiral as top talent who is creating the most value exits stage left. It’s seems like pretty awful business to cut your managements salary at the time you would potentially need them to drive results the most.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:17 AM
 
2,252 posts, read 1,395,217 times
Reputation: 4906
Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
That's your opinion that they were "paid more than they were worth"
Sometimes that might be true in the sense that lower-skilled workers were well paid and received benefits when their contribution to overall productivity or profitability might be viewed as a "drag" on the bottom line but that is a decision that MANAGEMENT made about the value of a person's contribution

Check the growth of management's wages/benefits vs the cost of workers' wages/benefits and you can see the disparity between CEO type pay and that of the average worker in a company over the past 40 years
There is no comparison
CEO/higher admin pay has gone off the chart while average workers' wages have had little to no real growth

And you can't make me believe that Jeff Immelt at GE was paid "fairly" for running that company into the ground
There are so many examples of management bleeding companies and taking advantage of workers to benefit themselves and stock prices/share holders who aren't the workers creating that wealth...

It used to be that taking advantage happened with unskilled workers--janitorial, service workers--but times have changed and now skilled white collar workers have been joined the ranks of unskilled/blue collar ones taken advantage of by management because companies use skilled personnel now--college degreed-workers--in IT or finance or health care--or pretty much any other company doing significant amount of business--

But just like Disney cut the legs off hundreds of their internal IT workers a while back to hire H1b workers they contracted for, ANY worker can be put in the same position as "unskilled" if management decides they are a cost drag...

Check the history of Enron--there were union workers likely employed there but it wasn't the union workers that raided company coffers, ran the company in the ground through bad/illegal decision making, and had corporate officers go to prison
Just like Aubrey McClendon w/Chesapeake Energy--
It wasn't the union employees or contracts that destroyed that company
It’s not an opinion that they were paid more than they were worth. In these small towns where people had godlike union wages, they couldn’t go somewhere else and get it.

Your ability to get the same or more money elsewhere is your personal spot rate. Like a stock.

When local union guy loses his job at the plant and says “I can’t get the same pay elsewhere”, it should tell them they over valued themselves and in fact we’re clearly being overpaid.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
24,736 posts, read 59,658,355 times
Reputation: 26888
[quote=loves2read;52760142]
But members of Unions have the right to VOTE for their leadership

Read some of Barbara Ehrenreich's non-fiction about the working life in America--her first one is about Reagan's era I think...

How many times has management taken pay cuts to sustain a business that is struggling???
/QUOTE]

Not the part time workers. They get no vote. As a result, the union uses them as cannon fodder. they are as guilty of taking advantage of the lowest compensated as the management/owners are.

I thought we were talking about today. Unions certainly did a lot for workers in the past. For a time, I think they even cared more about their members well being than about their own power and compensation. But while history can be important, it does not justify the condition/actions of the Unions today, unless you are saying they should be able to take advantage of the workers today because they helped them in the past. Is that your position?

In my experience every single time. Management takes the first hit, then the workers, then the shareholders. Sometimes, but rarely, the shareholders take a hit before the workers do. The entire reason for a company to exist is to make money for the shareholders, so while sometimes shareholders make take a partial hit for the benefit of the workers, you are unlikely to ever see them bear the lions share.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 10:25 AM
 
3,705 posts, read 3,031,347 times
Reputation: 10030
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slowpoke_TX View Post
Employees don't make business owners wealthy, customers do.


Oh, and employees are business owners - our 401(k)s, IRAs, and pension funds are all invested in the stock market, which means that the employees are co-owners in all of the companies whose shares are held in the funds.
Customers choose where they shop, highly efficient employees are most certainly part of what drives the customer choice of one business over the other, well paid contented workers generally out work those who suffer from poor morale and low wages.

On "workers as owners:" This is a concept so far fetched that it doesn't warrant any debate, let's just try and imagine one of these "owners" coming into the CEO's office to present his owner grief," the speedy escort out of the building would quickly extinguish the illusion of any ownership rights.

Unions are human creations, and as such they often fail to do the things they say they will, I've seen good and bad unions, but, as it has been adequately pointed out in several responses here, good and bad businesses are a fact of life--should we advocate for their demise?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 11:12 AM
 
3,705 posts, read 3,031,347 times
Reputation: 10030
Here we are again, the same o'l tug of war over the issues surrounding labor having a say in anything. The proposition that business has to treat it's workers fairly-- or the worker walks--is just not the reality of the American workplace. This is simply the "market talk" notion which then finds support in tales of how bad workers are being treated by unions. There are obviously many facets of American business and it's relationship with labor that get overlooked when the arguing over unions commences.

There are many failed businesses that never had any union affiliation, many failed workers who never belonged to a union, but the insistence of a belief's validity is pretty powerful, so, the beat goes on with the anti union folks who swear that America was done in by unions. Yes, they actually believe that those companies who ran away from America, union--AND--non union, were driven out by the devilish union bosses and their wayward supporters, never mind that their "new" workforce is a poorly compensated one often living in deplorable conditions, no, they are still just innocent saints, beaten down by an evil force..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-10-2018, 11:20 AM
 
3,705 posts, read 3,031,347 times
Reputation: 10030
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
they were part of the market and a big part at one time . they forced petty manufacturing skills to earn far more than the job was worth . today things have leveled off to where for the most part non skilled labor positions no longer are paid what they were .

people talk about losing those good paying jobs in manufacturing but most of those jobs were paying more than they were worth and so anyone waiting for them to return is chasing a ghost
I've heard people talk about "America" losing good jobs to foreign workers who labor under the same conditions which gave rise to unions in early day America. My guess is the foreign worker will also organize themselves in similar fashion, so where does capital flight go from there?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top