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Thread: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Tammerlain View Post
    And what is wrong with that?

    Is that not the entire point of a capitalist economic system?

    To ensure the highest possible returns (ie profits) on what ever goods and services you sell. In the case of union members it is their labour

    Ford wants to make as much money as possible on the cars it sells, should not the people who assemble said cars seek to make as much money as possible for the labour they sell
    It entertains me to no end that you people assume just because I said it, I must think there's something wrong with it.
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    It entertains me to no end that you people assume just because I said it, I must think there's something wrong with it.
    My mistake then

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Here is an excellent companion piece on the government-union complex by Daniel Henniger, which was actually published in the Wall Street Journal before the article cited in the OP.

    . . .

    The central battle in our time is over political primacy. It is a competition between the public sector and the private sector over who defines the work and the institutions that make a nation thrive and grow.

    In 1962, President John F. Kennedy planted the seeds that grew the modern Democratic Party. That year, JFK signed executive order 10988 allowing the unionization of the federal work force.

    This in turn led to the fantastic growth in membership of the public employee unions—The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the teachers' National Education Association.

    They broke the public's bank. More than that, they entrenched a system of taking money from members' dues and spending it on political campaigns. Over time, this transformed the Democratic Party into a public-sector dependency.

    Daniel Henninger: The Fall of the House of Kennedy - WSJ.com
    Last edited by ScummyD; 02-01-10 at 03:05 AM.
    "Muslims are OBLIGATED to raid the lands of the infidels, occupy them, and exchange their systems of governance for an Islamic system. . .They say that our sharia does not impose our particular beliefs upon others; this is a false assertion. For it is, in fact, part of our religion to IMPOSE our particular beliefs upon others." -bin Laden

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Quote Originally Posted by ScummyD View Post
    Here is an excellent companion piece on the government-union complex by Daniel Henniger, which was actually published in the Wall Street Journal before the article cited in the OP.

    . . .

    The central battle in our time is over political primacy. It is a competition between the public sector and the private sector over who defines the work and the institutions that make a nation thrive and grow.

    In 1962, President John F. Kennedy planted the seeds that grew the modern Democratic Party. That year, JFK signed executive order 10988 allowing the unionization of the federal work force.

    This in turn led to the fantastic growth in membership of the public employee unions—The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the teachers' National Education Association.

    They broke the public's bank. More than that, they entrenched a system of taking money from members' dues and spending it on political campaigns. Over time, this transformed the Democratic Party into a public-sector dependency.

    Daniel Henninger: The Fall of the House of Kennedy - WSJ.com
    Great post. See my article earlier in the thread at cityjournal.com.

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Thanks.

    Largest-ever federal payroll to hit 2.15 million

    The era of big government has returned with a vengeance, in the form of the largest federal work force in modern history.
    . . .
    The American Federation of Government Employees, the union that represents many government workers, said it was combing through the budget and did not have a comment.

    Largest-ever federal payroll to hit 2.15 million - Washington Times
    "Muslims are OBLIGATED to raid the lands of the infidels, occupy them, and exchange their systems of governance for an Islamic system. . .They say that our sharia does not impose our particular beliefs upon others; this is a false assertion. For it is, in fact, part of our religion to IMPOSE our particular beliefs upon others." -bin Laden

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Quote Originally Posted by ScummyD View Post
    Thanks.

    Largest-ever federal payroll to hit 2.15 million

    The era of big government has returned with a vengeance, in the form of the largest federal work force in modern history.

    . . .
    The American Federation of Government Employees, the union that represents many government workers, said it was combing through the budget and did not have a comment.

    Largest-ever federal payroll to hit 2.15 million - Washington Times
    really. didn't have a comment. then you did not look for what they had to say:
    ... "For too long, the unpredictability and inadequacy of the VA's discretionary funding process has had an adverse impact on the care of our nation's veterans. With an increase in funding of 20% since 2009, and with advanced appropriations, the 2011 budget honors veterans by fortifying the world-class medical care they deserve," said J. David Cox, AFGE national secretary-treasurer and former VA nurse. ...
    Federal Employee Union Responds to Obama Budget -- WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

    or maybe that union's support of more assistance for funding is something you don't agree with

    gage is absolutely correct in this assessment. the federal contracting mechanism was intentionally handicapped by the dicknbush regime, allowing well connected contractors to be unfairly enriched at taxpayer expense:
    ... The 2011 budget touches on the need to control contractor costs. "We are as committed to eliminating waste, fraud and abuse with the federal government as anyone. However, many federal agencies have not yet recovered from the onslaught they experienced during the past administration. We are eager for more defined guidance on the insourcing of government jobs. Over the past decade far too many American tax dollars were wasted away through sole-source contracts and misguided personnel systems. The boost in the acquisition workforce in the 2011 budget points to a desire for more government efficiency which would allow agencies to rein in their budgets while still hiring more federal employees," said Gage. ...
    it seems you also ignored that 700,000 military personnel are included in your headline figure. are you wanting to tell us in your unique way that you think we have too many troops on the federal payroll. and while it was made obvious in the article you cited that 80,000 temp workers for the payroll will be off the federal rolls at the conclusion of the 2010 census, you conveniently ignore that fact; that factual information might have offered a reasonable perspective which you could not allow to intrude on a discussion of an Obama-submitted budget
    we are negotiating about dividing a pizza and in the meantime israel is eating it
    once you're over the hill you begin to pick up speed

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Quote Originally Posted by ScummyD View Post
    Thanks
    And SD, here is another great editorial on this topic, from today's WSJ. It's laughable that the public unions aren't even making an attempt to justify their greed, which is worse than anything the banks did. At least with the banks, they are paying the borrowed TARP $$ back; money flushed into the public unions is gone forever.

    No wonder the country's urban infrastructure is falling apart, how can there be any moeny left for bridges and roads when 75% of every tax dollar goes into the union worker's health, salary or pension plan?

    The Public-Union Ascendancy - WSJ.com

    REVIEW & OUTLOOK - FEBRUARY 3, 2010.

    The Public-Union Ascendancy

    Government union members now outnumber private for the first time...

    It's now official: In 2009 the number of unionized workers who work for the government surpassed those in the private economy for the first time. This milestone explains a lot about modern American politics, in particular the paradox that union clout with Democrats has increased even as fewer workers belong to unions overall.

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported recently that 51.4% of America's 15.4 million union members, or about 7.91 million workers, were employed by the government in 2009. As recently as 1980, there were more than twice as many private as public union members. But private union membership has continued to decline, even as unions have organized more public employees. The nearby chart shows the historical trend.

    Overall unionism keeps declining, however, with the loss of 771,000 union jobs amid last year's recession. Only one in eight workers (12.3%) now belongs to a union, with private union employment hitting a record low of 7.2% of all jobs, down from 7.6% in 2008. Only one in 13 U.S. workers in the private economy pays union dues. In government, by contrast, the union employee share rose to 37.4% from 36.8% the year before.

    In private industries, union workers are subject to the vagaries of the marketplace and economic growth. Thus in 2009 10.1% of private union jobs were eliminated, which was more than twice the 4.4% rate of overall private job losses. On the other hand, government unions offer what is close to lifetime job security and benefits, subject only to gross dereliction of duty. Once a city or state's workers are organized by a union, the jobs almost never go away.

    This means government is the main playing field of modern unionism, which explains why the AFL-CIO and SEIU have become advocates for higher taxes and government expansion in cities, states and Washington. Unions once saw their main task as negotiating a bigger share of an individual firm's profits. Now the movement's main goal is securing a larger share of the overall private economy's wealth, which means pitting government employees against middle-class taxpayers.

    And as union membership has grown in government, so has union clout in pushing politicians (especially but not solely Democrats) for higher wages and benefits. This is why labor chiefs Andy Stern (SEIU) and Rich Trumka (AFL-CIO) could order Democrats to exempt unions from ObamaCare's tax increase on high-cost health insurance plans. To the extent Democrats have become the party of government, they have become ever more beholden to public unions.

    The problem for democracy is that this creates a self-reinforcing cycle of higher spending and taxes. The unions help elect politicians, who repay the unions with more pay and benefits and dues-paying members, who in turn help to re-elect those politicians.

    The political scientists Fred Siegel and Dan DiSalvo recently wrote in the Weekly Standard about the 2006 example of former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine shouting to a rally of 10,000 public workers that "We will fight for a fair contract." Mr. Corzine was supposed to be on the other side of the bargaining table representing taxpayers, not labor.

    From time to time, usually requiring a fiscal crisis, middle-class taxpayers in the private economy will revolt enough to check this vicious political cycle. (See Scott Brown.) But sooner or later, the unions regain their political advantage because taxpayers have other concerns while unions have the most to gain or lose.

    This is why most Democrats once opposed public-sector unionism. Such 20th-century liberal heroes as New York Mayor Fiorella LaGuardia and Franklin Roosevelt believed fervently in industrial unions. But they believed public employees had a special social obligation and could too easily exploit their monopoly position. How right they were.

    As we can see from the desperate economic and fiscal woes of California, New Jersey, New York and other states with dominant public unions, this has become a major problem for the U.S. economy and small-d democratic governance. It may be the single biggest problem. The agenda for American political reform needs to include the breaking of public unionism's power to capture an ever-larger share of private income.

    Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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    Re: Most Union Members Now Work for Government [edited]

    Thanks again. That's an informative piece. These are not good trends for the health of the republic.
    "Muslims are OBLIGATED to raid the lands of the infidels, occupy them, and exchange their systems of governance for an Islamic system. . .They say that our sharia does not impose our particular beliefs upon others; this is a false assertion. For it is, in fact, part of our religion to IMPOSE our particular beliefs upon others." -bin Laden

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