No wonder unions like the ones in Wisconsin are so pissed...
Union membership down again in 2010
The Bureau of Labor Statistics is out with its annual report on union membership. It’s down, once again: 11.9% of employees in 2010 were union members, down from 12.3% in 2009. There were 14.7 million union members, significantly down from 1983, the first year for which comparable data is available, when there were 17.7 million. Note that the population of the United States in 1983 was 234 million as compared to 308 million in 2010.
In 2009, for the first time, a majority of employed union members were public employees. The trend continues: in 2010 there were 7.6 million public sector union members and 7.1 million private sector union members. Which leads me to ask some questions. Why does the union movement continue to oppose free trade measures so vociferously? What interest do public employees have in trade protectionism? Is the union opposition to free trade agreements an effort to somehow, some way, get back all those unionized auto and steel jobs that have disappeared in the last three decades?