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Old 03-24-2012, 07:51 PM
 
16,709 posts, read 9,077,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gurbie View Post
That's another thing the Right hates about unions- they are democratic. The members ELECT the bosses, who then REPRESENT the members. If the members don't like what the bosses are doing, they vote them out.
That is funny, several school districts in Wisconsin had the teachers - you know the Union members, actually vote to dump the Union owned Health Insurance provider (because it overcharges the school above fair market value). The Union Leaders from the state came in and said that they couldn't do that and were contractually obligated and a lawsuit could come.
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:02 PM
 
Location: Chicago Area
8,006 posts, read 4,182,708 times
Reputation: 3017
Quote:
Originally Posted by michiganmoon View Post
They can be bullies. My brother was physically not allowed to do his job by Union members and cover McCain for the local newspaper when he visited town.
My brother works as a government contractor. If he spills his drink he's not allowed to clean it up because the janitors union would go ballistic. People are not allowed to jump in and help out where needed because the unions insist that only their members can lift a finger to do certain things -- most of them trivial.

So yeah, unions can be bullies. Unions need to start operating smarter. If teachers unions would police their own ranks and actively help cull the worst teachers then it would do worlds of good for education in this nation. If unions everywhere would police their own ranks, kick out lazy bums and maintain high standards of hard work and dedication, they would stop being a hinderance to progress and start being more of a benefit.

Unions area good thing in the overall scheme of things. Without them, would we ever have ended abuses such as working 7 days a week, 16 hours a day? Would worker rights even matter at all? The trouble is, unions need to join the 21st century and become more modern in function and behavior.
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:14 PM
 
16,709 posts, read 9,077,007 times
Reputation: 6758
Quote:
Originally Posted by godofthunder9010 View Post
My brother works as a government contractor. If he spills his drink he's not allowed to clean it up because the janitors union would go ballistic. People are not allowed to jump in and help out where needed because the unions insist that only their members can lift a finger to do certain things -- most of them trivial.

So yeah, unions can be bullies. Unions need to start operating smarter. If teachers unions would police their own ranks and actively help cull the worst teachers then it would do worlds of good for education in this nation. If unions everywhere would police their own ranks, kick out lazy bums and maintain high standards of hard work and dedication, they would stop being a hinderance to progress and start being more of a benefit.

Unions area good thing in the overall scheme of things. Without them, would we ever have ended abuses such as working 7 days a week, 16 hours a day? Would worker rights even matter at all? The trouble is, unions need to join the 21st century and become more modern in function and behavior.
I agree. Unions protect the horrible teachers. When teachers are hired they get seniority based on when they are hired. So if a school needs to lay off* a teacher, they do it based in seniority and not merit.

*perhaps because they get overcharged by the Union monopoly on providing health care
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:18 PM
 
Location: somewhere in the woods
16,885 posts, read 13,007,834 times
Reputation: 5211
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gurbie View Post
That will come as a big surprise to the 14,000 members of the Greater Pittsburgh Regional Council of Carpenters Union, which endorsed Santorum in '06 in exchange for his support on a big tunnel project:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...RqTsuGuzCG_3Ug

after reading the article, santorum did not mention private sector unions, he was talking about the public sector unions, and he is right, taxpayer money should not be spent on a union that is funded with taxpayer money.
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Chicago Area
8,006 posts, read 4,182,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michiganmoon View Post
I agree. Unions protect the horrible teachers. When teachers are hired they get seniority based on when they are hired. So if a school needs to lay off* a teacher, they do it based in seniority and not merit.

*perhaps because they get overcharged by the Union monopoly on providing health care
We should be pushing for charter schools like crazy. If unions want to exist in that space, they'll have to adapt drastically.

Charter schools get results, plain and simple. Teachers unions and federal/state/local bureaucracies are a hindrance and not a help -- and the very interesting thing about charter schools is the complete lack of all of those groups. If you want the USA to be the number 1 educational system in the world, teachers unions as presently constituted will never let it happen.

The thing is, it doesn't have to be this way. Some unions simply choose to be bad for America by getting their priorities out of whack. They can change but refuse to.
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:01 PM
 
25 posts, read 16,161 times
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Yet that hypocrite voted against right to work laws as a senator and was bought and paid for by a union.
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Old 03-25-2012, 12:11 AM
 
Location: NC
1,946 posts, read 1,539,026 times
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Unions are indeed bullies and a cancer on the country which needs to be surgically removed, absolutely no doubt about it, BUT, this is just Santorum flip-flopping on the issue. Once upon a time, this guy was mooching with the unions and opposed Right to Work law.
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Old 03-25-2012, 04:25 AM
 
Location: Chicago Area
8,006 posts, read 4,182,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moving_pains View Post
Unions are indeed bullies and a cancer on the country which needs to be surgically removed, absolutely no doubt about it, BUT, this is just Santorum flip-flopping on the issue. Once upon a time, this guy was mooching with the unions and opposed Right to Work law.
Unions as they are today? Yes, there is a great deal of validity to calling them what they are -- a blight upon society in general. Still, this is not true of all unions even today. There are some that are operated intelligently and are a force for good and not evil pretty much across the board. Unfortunately, such cases are a rarity.

Unions are historically one of the most important tools ever used by the working class to end the many abuses of the rich and powerful. Before the unions fought back, you had entire families working 16 hours a day and seven days a week in factories and shamelessly exploited by businesses. Children were pulled into the work force at shamefully young ages and used for specialized work requiring tiny hands. It was from this era that we gained the saying, "Throwing a wrench in the works." With no real concept of breaks during the work day, workers at industrial factories had to resort to sabotage in order to get a breather. One very effective method: Throw a big wrench into the right part of the machine and break it. Good enough for a good hour or two of rest -- just don't get caught of course. If a worker got his arm torn off by a machine, that was his bad luck. He should have been more careful. If a worker died because something unexpectedly blew up in the factory, too bad for him and his family. If a child died while working so what? There's more children to take their place after all. Factory workers could make more money than farmers (that is why they worked at the factories despite the horrible conditions), but they were treated like slaves for all intents and purposes.

It was into that world that unions were born. But striking enmasse, they could hit the rich factory owners where it hurt: In the pocketbook. It took decades but gradually they were able to fight for and gain greater rights in the workplace. Now that worker rights are regulated by law at the state and federal level, many claim that unions have served their purpose and are no longer relevant. As they are now, that may be quite valid. If they can adapt themselves to fit into the modern age, I think they can still do a lot of good.

One bad myth IMHO is that government employees should not be allowed to unionize. If you know your history, you know that before there were teachers unions, local governments had talked their way into paying schoolteachers next to nothing. "They're just a bunch of married women looking to make a little extra money. Their family already has one real breadwinner, so clearly we don't need to pay them very much money." Translated into today's money, they were paid less than minimum wage in most cases. Teachers unions formed up, they did all the things that unions do and they were able to demand better pay and better treatment. Because public servants can be mistreated, overworked and underpaid too, unions have had an important part to play among government workers historically.

The problem with today's unions: Teachers unions should be obsessively focused on providing the highest quality education possible, but they don't actually care about that. Auto worker's unions should be obsessively focused on providing the best made cars in the world and making their brand the best, most successful brand on earth. They don't actually care too much about that. Terrified of ceasing to exist, many unions strong-arm companies into agreeing to hire only union workers. This has led to unions bullying member and becoming very corrupt in far too many cases. Unions need to join the 21st century already. Become a force for good or go away.
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Old 03-25-2012, 06:27 AM
 
Location: NC
1,946 posts, read 1,539,026 times
Reputation: 883
Quote:
Originally Posted by godofthunder9010 View Post
Unions as they are today? Yes, there is a great deal of validity to calling them what they are -- a blight upon society in general. Still, this is not true of all unions even today. There are some that are operated intelligently and are a force for good and not evil pretty much across the board. Unfortunately, such cases are a rarity.

Unions are historically one of the most important tools ever used by the working class to end the many abuses of the rich and powerful. Before the unions fought back, you had entire families working 16 hours a day and seven days a week in factories and shamelessly exploited by businesses. Children were pulled into the work force at shamefully young ages and used for specialized work requiring tiny hands. It was from this era that we gained the saying, "Throwing a wrench in the works." With no real concept of breaks during the work day, workers at industrial factories had to resort to sabotage in order to get a breather. One very effective method: Throw a big wrench into the right part of the machine and break it. Good enough for a good hour or two of rest -- just don't get caught of course. If a worker got his arm torn off by a machine, that was his bad luck. He should have been more careful. If a worker died because something unexpectedly blew up in the factory, too bad for him and his family. If a child died while working so what? There's more children to take their place after all. Factory workers could make more money than farmers (that is why they worked at the factories despite the horrible conditions), but they were treated like slaves for all intents and purposes.

It was into that world that unions were born. But striking enmasse, they could hit the rich factory owners where it hurt: In the pocketbook. It took decades but gradually they were able to fight for and gain greater rights in the workplace. Now that worker rights are regulated by law at the state and federal level, many claim that unions have served their purpose and are no longer relevant. As they are now, that may be quite valid. If they can adapt themselves to fit into the modern age, I think they can still do a lot of good.

One bad myth IMHO is that government employees should not be allowed to unionize. If you know your history, you know that before there were teachers unions, local governments had talked their way into paying schoolteachers next to nothing. "They're just a bunch of married women looking to make a little extra money. Their family already has one real breadwinner, so clearly we don't need to pay them very much money." Translated into today's money, they were paid less than minimum wage in most cases. Teachers unions formed up, they did all the things that unions do and they were able to demand better pay and better treatment. Because public servants can be mistreated, overworked and underpaid too, unions have had an important part to play among government workers historically.

The problem with today's unions: Teachers unions should be obsessively focused on providing the highest quality education possible, but they don't actually care about that. Auto worker's unions should be obsessively focused on providing the best made cars in the world and making their brand the best, most successful brand on earth. They don't actually care too much about that. Terrified of ceasing to exist, many unions strong-arm companies into agreeing to hire only union workers. This has led to unions bullying member and becoming very corrupt in far too many cases. Unions need to join the 21st century already. Become a force for good or go away.
Once upon a time, unions may have had a role. Not anymore. Unions cured some problems with the work environment half a century ago. They have looted too much of public wealth with that claim to fame and have overstayed their welcome. When manufacturing died in the US, and we can thank the unions for that, they killed their own justification for existence. Now, it's plain looting and bullying.

You don't keep consuming medicine for a disease, even after you are cured, however great you once thought the medicine was when you were sick. If you do, that medicine can kill you.
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Old 03-25-2012, 06:46 AM
 
Location: Chicago Area
8,006 posts, read 4,182,708 times
Reputation: 3017
Quote:
Originally Posted by moving_pains View Post
Once upon a time, unions may have had a role. Not anymore. Unions cured some problems with the work environment half a century ago. They have looted too much of public wealth with that claim to fame and have overstayed their welcome. When manufacturing died in the US, and we can thank the unions for that, they killed their own justification for existence. Now, it's plain looting and bullying.

You don't keep consuming medicine for a disease, even after you are cured, however great you once thought the medicine was when you were sick. If you do, that medicine can kill you.
I believe that unions can be an important force for good. They just choose not to be. Doesn't mean the potential isn't there.

Realistically, unions are obsolete just like the Model T is obsolete. But you can still make a car that is modern and relevant. You can even use the raw materials from a Model T to help build it. So too, you can remake unions into something useful. I have my doubts that it'll ever happen, but I'd love for them to prove me wrong.
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