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WarRI1
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Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:42 am

http://www.providencejournal.com/opi...-unions-lost-ground-lost-wages.ece


A viewpoint on what has affected the American workers, all workers because of the decline of unions in the US. It also touch's on the racial aspect, and the social aspect, and also the economic result of this on our wages and it's affect on the economic well being of our country. What were the latest figures? 1% control 20% of the wealth, and 20% control 48% of the wealth now. The highest since 1928 was it?

[Edited 2013-09-12 18:43:27]
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deltadawg
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Fri Sep 13, 2013 7:25 pm

Wow, that was not a biased pro-union article was it?!?!?!
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:09 am

Quoting deltadawg (Reply 1):
Wow, that was not a biased pro-union article was it?!?!?!

Of course it was, also the truth. Would one like to prove differently? Show me how it was not truthful.
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mmedford
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:27 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 2):
Of course it was, also the truth. Would one like to prove differently? Show me how it was not truthful.

+1 Sir...i'd like to see evidence proving that article wrong...
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:36 am

Quoting mmedford (Reply 3):
Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 2):Of course it was, also the truth. Would one like to prove differently? Show me how it was not truthful.



+1 Sir...i'd like to see evidence proving that article wrong...

We now number two people, you and I who would like to see that article proven untrue.
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KRIC777
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:57 am

In 2013, most labor unions are a pathetic joke, particularly those that represent workers that do jobs that any random individual off the street could do. Back in the day, when employers would scrimp on safety issues and such, unions had a place to protect their members. They are an anachronism now.

When you enter the labor market, you are essentially doing nothing more than selling your labor. It is the responsibility of the individual to enhance the value of their labor through training and education, because, as in all business arrangements, the customers (in this case, employers) determine the value of that labor by their willingness to pay a certain price for it (a wage.) For example, physicians do not have labor unions: Their labor is sufficiently valuable, because of their skills and training, that they can command a high income without organizing a corrupt, self-serving union. If one needs a union to ensure a particular wage/benefit structure, it is because they are demanding a wage/benefit structure that is in excess of the marginal product of their labor. If their labor was that valuable, the employer would have no choice but to pay what was demanded.

My father was unionized in Western PA steel mills in the late 70's. He saw how they protected slackers and sub-standard workers while he busted his butt for essentially the same wage, and decided he could no longer be a part of it. He got out just before the steel industry collapsed. The United Steel Workers didn't cause that collapse, but they didn't help, either.
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:17 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
In 2013, most labor unions are a pathetic joke, particularly those that represent workers that do jobs that any random individual off the street could do. Back in the day, when employers would scrimp on safety issues and such, unions had a place to protect their members. They are an anachronism now.

We are not looking for a rant, we are looking for someone to prove the article on which this thread is based on to be false. We are all aware of the hatred by many of unions on here. A reply accused the writers of being pro-union, I agree, but what they wrote is pro-union and the truth. Please prove this article false, if you can.
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KRIC777
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:23 am

I note that the article in question is based largely on what is referred to by the authors as "our research" that is not substantiated. I also note that the article in question conveniently sidesteps the issue of the increased local unemployment that would result from companies who cannot afford to pay the wages demanded by the unions, and relocate their operations either overseas or to "right-to-work" states. Not to mention the higher prices for goods produced by workers earning wages that are artificially inflated by unionization.

Weak Sauce.
 
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:33 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 7):
I note that the article in question is based largely on what is referred to by the authors as "our research" that is not substantiated. I also note that the article in question conveniently sidesteps the issue of the increased local unemployment that would result from companies who cannot afford to pay the wages demanded by the unions, and relocate their operations either overseas or to "right-to-work" states. Not to mention the higher prices for goods produced by workers earning wages that are artificially inflated by unionization.

Weak Sauce.

They did the research, they are educated people as far as I remember. They published what they researched, They say it is true. I agree. Anyone who does not believe that the loss of union membership in this country, has been negative for the workers in this country is either very naïve, not able to accept reality, or believes that the exploitation of workers is just fine and dandy. I know we have many who do believe in exploitation, I do not. Prove them wrong.
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KRIC777
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:35 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 6):
Please prove this article false, if you can.

OK, WarRI1, that's a fair point. I can't necessarily prove the assertions of the article false, in fact they are probably largely, technically, correct. But I think there are so many other issues surrounding the subject matter involved that are SO MUCH more important than the rather narrowly-focused thrust of the article that it is worth mentioning that, at the end of the day, the fundamental assertions of the article are only marginally relevant at this point. I guess my point is: "OK, you may be correct, but who cares?"

Fair enough?
 
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:01 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 8):
Anyone who does not believe that the loss of union membership in this country, has been negative for the workers in this country is either very naïve, not able to accept reality, or believes that the exploitation of workers is just fine and dandy.

I have a relatively well-paid, white-collar job....but insofar as I am exhausted at the end of the day, I do kind of feel like I "work" for a living and am therefore a "worker." The idea that people who do manual labor are "workers" and those who work with their brains are not "workers" is highly offensive to me. I am not represented by a union. I do not consider myself particularly naive, nor unaccepting of reality. I will throw you an olive branch in that I will agree with you that the reduction in union membership has not been great for *unskilled* workers. But in this day and age, if one is of working age and has no marketable skills, whose fault is that? I busted my a$$ in my early 20s working a crappy full-time job and going to an inexpensive public university at night to get my degree. It took me 8 miserable years, that SUCKED, but I did it. Now I have a good job. I consider myself a compassionate individual, but pardon me if I don't shed a tear for someone who chose to spend their early 20s partying and getting high, while I was doing schoolwork, for not being able to find a job making as much as I do, with little to no marketable skills.
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:03 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 9):

OK, WarRI1, that's a fair point. I can't necessarily prove the assertions of the article false, in fact they are probably largely, technically, correct. But I think there are so many other issues surrounding the subject matter involved that are SO MUCH more important than the rather narrowly-focused thrust of the article that it is worth mentioning that, at the end of the day, the fundamental assertions of the article are only marginally relevant at this point. I guess my point is: "OK, you may be correct, but who cares?"

Fair enough?

At what point? I care. I think the workers are being screwed over more now than in the last 50 years. It is a direct result of the loss of union jobs which were a counterpoint to low wages. They provided an escape from exploitation. They were an implicit threat, pay us, or we will go union. All gone now, and we see the result. Low wages, no job security, no benefits. People are numbers, to be shuffled around like they were years ago, but now we have the global shuffle, and there hangs a tale. Maybe when people have had enough, we will again hear the word union. Even among white collar workers. Make no mistake, no economy can exist without jobs, and if they think it can be done, we will have a welfare economy. A few supporting the many. We are on the way to that now.

[Edited 2013-09-13 20:25:37]
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:23 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 10):
I have a relatively well-paid, white-collar job....but insofar as I am exhausted at the end of the day, I do kind of feel like I "work" for a living and am therefore a "worker." The idea that people who do manual labor are "workers" and those who work with their brains are not "workers" is highly offensive to me

I am happy for you, I admire your get up and go. I do not consider you a non-worker, nor would any one else I know. We in the union world worked with highly educated co- workers, engineers and such everyday. There was respect on both sides, for a job well done. This unreasoning hatred on here for unions is absurd, plus elsewhere. The system is broken now. You know the saying, power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Truer words were never spoken, in all situations, even in labor relations.


The power has shifted too much to the corporations side. We are, and even you maybe suffering because of it. Overworked perhaps, who knows. One thing is clear, people who work now are much less happy than they were 30 years ago. I loved my job, hated to retire. I was union. My wife, management, ended up hating her job and retired early because of the pressure, the overwork, watching people shoved out the door, while younger people earning less money stayed. That is why they stayed, to cut expenses. time and loyalty meant nothing. I wish you luck.
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photopilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:30 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
Back in the day, when employers would scrimp on safety issues and such, unions had a place to protect their members. They are an anachronism now.

You have to be joking if you think that safety issues today are resolved and that it can be left up to the employer to do the right thing and protect their workers. There were 4,693 fatal work injuries in 2011 and 4,383 fatal work injuries recorded in the United States in 2012, according to results from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Unions work not only at the employer/employee level thru Health and Safety Committees to keep workers safe, but also unions work at the legislative level to see that laws and regulations that govern safety are put and kept in place.

Unions as an anachronism? Hardly!!!!
 
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:35 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 12):
That is why they stayed, to cut expenses. time and loyalty meant nothing. I wish you luck.

Not gonna argue anymore, my friend. We clearly have a fundamental disagreement with respect to unions, but at the end of the day, I feel like if we sat down over a round of beers, we would probably find that we agree on much more then we disagree. You're a working man, I'm a working man. Best wishes to you  
 
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:46 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 14):
Not gonna argue anymore, my friend. We clearly have a fundamental disagreement with respect to unions, but at the end of the day, I feel like if we sat down over a round of beers, we would probably find that we agree on much more then we disagree. You're a working man, I'm a working man. Best wishes to you

I could not agree more. I do it everyday when we go to the coffee shop, retired union, management guys, wealthy guys, we all sit down and shoot the shit. We solve all the worlds problems, and the next day start over again. We now realize we are basically all the same, just trying to survive. Age does that.
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flymia
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:14 am

Oh Unions. I think the airline industry has showed us how great they are for business. And in the public spectrum they help keep lazy, unqualified workers, and people who are just bad at their job at work. Google some of the police officers who have been fired, suspended or even arrested in Florida who continue to get their jobs back because of the unions.

When I was working at a corporate counsel office of a large company we had an union come into one of our facilities and spend over $800K in services for the heads of the union of only the regional chapter. $800k in luxury services, nothing was essential or towards business and it was for the heads of the union only, i. the region we are in. $800,000. Those guys represented workers who mostly made minimum wage. It was good business for us but wow were they screwing over the people they supposedly were put to help and protect. Why not give the $800,000 for something useful for them.

If unions actually took care of the good workers, if the union bosses were not in it for the money, then maybe they would be a good thing. Maybe.

Ask Chrysler and General Motors how great those unions are for them.
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:57 pm

I love reading articles like this one that show how unions really are...

http://www.forbes.com/sites/theapoth...-plans-drop-dead/?partner=yahootix

In it for the little guy...HA!
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WestJet747
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:25 pm

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 2):
Of course it was, also the truth. Would one like to prove differently?

Have you paid JSTOR the $14 it costs to download a PDF of the study to confirm whether it holds water or not? Just because the study is published, it doesn't make it credible.

If in fact neither of us have actually read the study, I can disprove the findings so much as you can prove them.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 12):
This unreasoning hatred on here for unions is absurd

Don't throw stones in glass houses, WarRI1. If I cared to dedicate a few minutes to it, I could easily pull up some of your more recent threads on the issue and pull out many, many comments you have made that hate on some (like myself) who are critical of unions.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 12):
The power has shifted too much to the corporations side.

Corporations are about as self-aware as the bottle of Żywiec sitting next to my laptop right now. People make decisions under the name of a corporations, so "the power has shifted" to different people. Union workers have as much opportunity to be those people if they're willing to work for it. The obvious problem being that unions cover the asses of the people not willing to work for it, while the smaller segment of hardworking union guys are largely unrecognized because of the collective environment in which they operate.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 12):
One thing is clear, people who work now are much less happy than they were 30 years ago. I loved my job, hated to retire. I was union. My wife, management, ended up hating her job and retired early because of the pressure, the overwork, watching people shoved out the door, while younger people earning less money stayed. That is why they stayed, to cut expenses. time and loyalty meant nothing. I wish you luck.

Your ability to paint everybody with same brush based on very narrow experiences is uncanny.

Anyway, for what it's worth, I've worked for 4 different companies in 4 different industries in 4 different functional areas of the business (all of which were "white collar") and only one was an unpleasant experience**. If I'm batting .750 in happiness at corporate jobs, the state of affairs these days can't be all that bad.

**I was working as an analyst for a major wealth management firm. I believe you said your wife worked for a bank. So there's a clear correlation there which seems to limit negative experience to the financial sector versus corporations as whole, hence my comment about you making sweeping statements.

Quoting flymia (Reply 16):
When I was working at a corporate counsel office of a large company we had an union come into one of our facilities and spend over $800K in services for the heads of the union of only the regional chapter. $800k in luxury services, nothing was essential or towards business and it was for the heads of the union only, i. the region we are in. $800,000. Those guys represented workers who mostly made minimum wage. It was good business for us but wow were they screwing over the people they supposedly were put to help and protect. Why not give the $800,000 for something useful for them.

I've tried telling the union crowd that the unions that represent them are corporations in themselves, often with similar levels of corruption, but they're willfully blind to that fact because the unions usually get them slight bumps in their pay. The whole "fighting for the little guy" thing is simply a means (read: opportunity) to an end (read: a paycheck) for union heads.
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photopilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:28 pm

The reality is that it's not the union's fault that American health care is so screwed up. It's the politicos who simply can't understand that a Universal Single-Pay system of healthcare works best, and is easiest to administer. You know, like 95% of 1st-World Countries have in place.
 
BMI727
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sat Sep 14, 2013 9:06 pm

Why do unions fear right to work so much? Right to work doesn't ban unions, it just says they cannot force people to join. But, if unions are as important and beneficial as they believe themselves to be, it should be no issue for them since workers should be clamoring to join unions or unionize their workplaces, and businesses should be happy to have them since union workers are just better and worth more money. Nobody seems quite sure how, but that's what I'm told by pro-union people anyway.

If unions are worried about declining membership, they should focus on training and stop extorting uneconomical wages for their workers. Have a product to sell and sell it at a reasonable price, just like any other business.

Which brings me to my next point: maybe the type of unskilled labor commonly represented by unions is simply just worth less these days. There is far more competition for jobs these days, overseas or otherwise. If you look at almost any product, you'll see huge leaps in capability and huge drops in cost. Even in the 1980s, a TV with a 25 or so inch screen would cost over $500. A larger, modern LED TV costs considerably less than that even before accounting for inflation and is better at literally everything. So what about the worker? In what way is the high school educated (don't confuse "uneducated" with "unskilled," it is not the same thing), blue collar, American worker improved over his counterpart from sixty or eighty years ago? So you have a situation where there is more competition but not more suitability on the part of one of the competitors. It's no wonder wages have been stagnant or dropping, but it's not a conspiracy, it's economics.

And of course nobody seems to be able to talk about unions without mentioning "equality." Unions seem very interested in equality, which sounds like a good idea until you realize that not all workers are equal.

Quoting WarRI1 (Thread starter):
What were the latest figures? 1% control 20% of the wealth, and 20% control 48% of the wealth now.

They made money, invested it, and made more money. That's not something to be resisted, that's something to be emulated.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 12):
watching people shoved out the door, while younger people earning less money stayed.

Perhaps unions could learn a thing or two from this very dynamic.

Quoting photopilot (Reply 19):
It's the politicos who simply can't understand that a Universal Single-Pay system of healthcare works best, and is easiest to administer.

Yeah, nothing solves problems like a monopoly. Especially one run by the government.  
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:14 am

Quoting flymia (Reply 16):
$800K in services for the heads of the union of only the regional chapter

Might I ask, where you got that info? Was it in wages? In benefits? Cars? travel? How many people are involved in those numbers? Did the union send you a copy? Anyone can throw a figure out there.
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:34 am

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
Have you paid JSTOR the $14 it costs to download a PDF of the study to confirm whether it holds water or not? Just because the study is published, it doesn't make it credible.

Anyone with their two feet firmly planted on the ground, and reads, watch's the news, stays informed when reports are made and then can deny that the worker is getting screwed over more every year and that the loss of unions in the private sector has not contributed greatly to this is naïve. Just look at what union representation has done for government workers. I rest my case.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
If in fact neither of us have actually read the study, I can disprove the findings so much as you can prove them.

Read my statement above.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
Don't throw stones in glass houses, WarRI1. If I cared to dedicate a few minutes to it, I could easily pull up some of your more recent threads on the issue and pull out many, many comments you have made that hate on some (like myself) who are critical of unions.

I wish you would. Was I polite? Was I crude? Was I insulting to the point of being deleted? Did I lie? did I distort? did I spew hatred? Did I use personal attacks. Did I Use generalities, so as not to make personal attacks?

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
Your ability to paint everybody with same brush based on very narrow experiences is uncanny.

Over 40 years union, 30 of them a union official. Now how do I paint everyone with the same brush? I know that some on here support me, I know that many more do not. I have to accept that the charge of painting people is caused by unreasonable dislike of unions on here by a large number of people, many because of age most certainly have narrow, or no experience. What is yours if I maybe so bold? I have told you all what my reason is for liking unions, let us hear about all the experiences the union haters have.
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:10 am

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
Don't throw stones in glass houses, WarRI1. If I cared to dedicate a few minutes to it, I could easily pull up some of your more recent threads on the issue and pull out many, many comments you have made that hate on some (like myself) who are critical of unions.

I only made a quick search back. I do not see any comments in which I used any way out there comments to you, or others. I have been rather calm in fact as far as I can see. If anyone out there can find any, let me know. I try my best to avoid the dreaded deletion. I have bitten my lip many times.
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Flighty
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 2:25 am

It's a two way street. One the one hand, you have globalization. US factory workers don't have any bargaining power globally (or even against competing states). Nor do their employers.

The only workers who really have the power to get "rent" are govt workers. They are connected to government, and wield the power to tax their neighbors, and frankly take their homes away unless they get paid.

You can see what side of the debate I take. Organizing is a right, but not an exclusive one.

[Edited 2013-09-14 19:27:03]
 
flymia
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 5:36 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 21):
Might I ask, where you got that info? Was it in wages? In benefits? Cars? travel? How many people are involved in those numbers? Did the union send you a copy? Anyone can throw a figure out there

The union regional chapter spent $800k in services, this had nothing to do with wages, travel etc.. it was checks made out to the company I worked for. I would estimate around 50-70 people were involved in these expenses.
The reason is was privy to all that information was because this union also decided not to pay our company a fairly significant about of money that was due. Working in the general counsel office I was given the task to figure out exactly how much they owed, start negotiations to try to settle, and prepare the accounting staff involved for settlement negotiations with the union's general counsel. So I had just about all the information there was on what this regional chapter used and purchased. It was almost exclusively luxury items. I first thought it was for the national union which would make a bit more sense, still extravagent and for a very long time period but somewhat understandable. When I figured out it was only for the regional office. Wow, what a fraud IMO.

That's really all I can say about it because it was settled and never went to court. Beleive me or not, this is the exact thing I think about when I see unions now days. I'm sure not all are like this, but I am sure there are plenty which are too. I wish I could say more, and tell you exactly what union it was. But that would be unethical on my part.

[Edited 2013-09-14 22:37:14]
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Mir
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 5:59 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
For example, physicians do not have labor unions: Their labor is sufficiently valuable, because of their skills and training, that they can command a high income without organizing a corrupt, self-serving union.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Medical_Association

Technically not a union, but it does a lot of the things a union would do. Their lobbying efforts are extensive, and they're all designed at helping their members.

-Mir
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windy95
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:44 pm

Quoting WarRI1 (Thread starter):
A viewpoint on what has affected the American workers, all workers because of the decline of unions in the US.

How about blaming the unions for supporting Obamacare and illegal alien amnesty. Unions have a large part in the destruction of unions and the pay scale.

Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
My father was unionized in Western PA steel mills in the late 70's. He saw how they protected slackers and sub-standard workers while he busted his butt for essentially the same wage, and decided he could no longer be a part of it

It sucks having that protection and seniority for the slackers.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 11):
It is a direct result of the loss of union jobs which were a counterpoint to low wages.

No the unions asking to be paid more than the market can hold caused that.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 11):
They provided an escape from exploitation

By exploiting the people they supposedly saved from exploitation.

Quoting flymia (Reply 16):
. And in the public spectrum they help keep lazy, unqualified workers, and people who are just bad at their job at work.
Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 18):
I've tried telling the union crowd that the unions that represent them are corporations in themselves, often with similar levels of corruption, but they're willfully blind to that fact because the unions usually get them slight bumps in their pay. The whole "fighting for the little guy" thing is simply a means (read: opportunity) to an end (read: a paycheck) for union heads

The truth...We work for two masters...the company and the union. One pays us and the other is like a leech....
 
rwy04lga
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:38 pm

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 22):
Just look at what union representation has done for government workers.

For me, a Federal employee from 1978 to 2008? Little to NOTHING!!

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 22):
I have told you all what my reason is for liking unions, let us hear about all the experiences the union haters have.

All around me...transit workers...teachers...sanitation...private sector.....ALL got bigger percentage increases than did my union. The only time we saw union officials was election time. They really only cared about reelection.
Just accept that some days, you're the pigeon, and other days the statue
 
photopilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Sun Sep 15, 2013 5:17 pm

Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 28):
Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 22):
Just look at what union representation has done for government workers.

For me, a Federal employee from 1978 to 2008? Little to NOTHING!!
Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 28):
All around me...transit workers...teachers...sanitation...private sector.....ALL got bigger percentage increases than did my union. The only time we saw union officials was election time. They really only cared about reelection.

So in 30 years, what did YOU do about it? Did you attend union meetings and voice your opinion? Did you run for elected union office yourself so that all of YOUR ideas could be put into play? OR..... Did you just sit back and let the union do what it wanted to do without your input, them moan and bitch about YOUR union? Remember, if you're not part of the solution, then you are (were) part of the problem.

I've worked all four sides of the employment situation..... Non-union employee, Unionized employee, Manager of Non-Unionized employees and Manager of Unionized employees. I'm presently working as a Manager of a unionized shop and have to administer a Collective Agreement of 550 pages. Let me tell you, it's not easy and from my perspective, sure there are clauses that I wonder how ANY sane person would put into that contract, never mind they were agreed to by both the company and the union. But like it or not, that's the give and take of the negotiating process.

There are good unions, bad unions, strong unions and weak unions.... just as there are strong companies and weak companies. Some companies choose to work WITH their union to achieve a great work environment, and some seem designed to be confrontational from the outset. But do I blame unionism for that, or blame an obstinate company? Frankly, it's both. Takes two to tango you know.

I've got Shop-Stewards who are an honest pleasure to work with, because they understand that while they have to represent their members rights under the contract, they also understand the business environment. And likewise, there are some Shop-Stewards that are confrontational from the outset, and long term all they do is harden any type of resolution to a problem into a win/lose situation, with no middle ground.

I've also got Supervisors that are completely inflexible or practical and try to enforce every single little nuance of the contract, often without any sort of fairness to those involved. They cause an untold number of grievances and cost to the company. But the real joy is the Supervisors that work WITH the employees, Shop-Stewards, and fairly and equitably administer the contract and make the place work. That's called LEADERSHIP, on both the Union and Management sides.

So all this union bashing just because they're union is really only a sop to someone who's life likely is/was pretty drab and took the easy way, coasting thru their career. Because a truly functional workplace takes lots of hard work, on both sides and from all parties.

'nuff said.
 
johnboy
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 12:35 am

Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
For example, physicians do not have labor unions: Their labor is sufficiently valuable, because of their skills and training, that they can command a high income without organizing a corrupt, self-serving union.

Actually at the hospital I recently worked at, there WAS a physicians' union.
Best not to generalize, Sparky.
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 12:57 am

Quoting flymia (Reply 25):
That's really all I can say about it because it was settled and never went to court. Beleive me or not, this is the exact thing I think about when I see unions now days. I'm sure not all are like this, but I am sure there are plenty which are too. I wish I could say more, and tell you exactly what union it was. But that would be unethical on my part.

I am not doubting your word. I am amazed that such a thing could happen these days. It sure sounds like everyone involved lived high off the hog. Was it because they thought the company was paying, and they squandered the money intentionally? I do not need an answer, if it is unethical. Just supposing, an intentional get back by the union. It is always easy to spend someone's money, especially while on expense's. Not very ethical, in my opinion.
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:12 am

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
How about blaming the unions for supporting Obamacare and illegal alien amnesty. Unions have a large part in the destruction of unions and the pay scale.

I support the ACA. I do not support illegals, no way, no how. I do not agree, everything worked just fine until the Global Economy came along, we had jobs up the ass. Now everywhere but here.

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
It sucks having that protection and seniority for the slackers.

Give me a break, slackers everywhere high, low down. I am sure you never goofed off, baloney if you deny.

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
No the unions asking to be paid more than the market can hold caused that.

A ridiculous statement, contrary to the facts. CHEAP LABOR, exploitation of foreign workers. Easier than paying your fellow citizens a living wage. So much more enriching also.

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
By exploiting the people they supposedly saved from exploitation.

If you are referring to me and millions of others, ridiculous. It did not hurt my family, my friends, my fellow union members, nor my net worth.

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
The truth...We work for two masters...the company and the union. One pays us and the other is like a leech....

Such an statement can not be taken seriously.
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:18 am

Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 28):
For me, a Federal employee from 1978 to 2008? Little to NOTHING!!


It is certainly not the case here in R.I. All doing very well.


Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 22):I have told you all what my reason is for liking unions, let us hear about all the experiences the union haters have.



All around me...transit workers...teachers...sanitation...private sector.....ALL got bigger percentage increases than did my union. The only time we saw union officials was election time. They really only cared about reelection.

Those are the unions I was referring to. I did not know the Federal employee did so poorly. I was under the impression to hear the union bashers that Federal Employees were raking it in. I guess I watched Fox News too much  
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:28 am

Quoting photopilot (Reply 29):
So all this union bashing just because they're union is really only a sop to someone who's life likely is/was pretty drab and took the easy way, coasting thru their career. Because a truly functional workplace takes lots of hard work, on both sides and from all parties.

'nuff said.

Amen Brother. I worked my ass off earning my money. I worked with construction crews on the job, they worked their asses off also. 15 minutes for coffee, and I mean 15 minutes. Back they went, same for lunch. Toe the line, or back to the union hall. The big outfits here, want union help. They want professional people. Too bad they moved all the manufacturing out of here, to go over there. There would be a ton of jobs, union and non-union.
It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:31 am

Quoting johnboy (Reply 30):
Actually at the hospital I recently worked at, there WAS a physicians' union.

I am so glad to see you point that out. Score one for honesty and reality.   
It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
 
photopilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:15 am

Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
Quoting kric777 (Reply 5):
My father was unionized in Western PA steel mills in the late 70's. He saw how they protected slackers and sub-standard workers while he busted his butt for essentially the same wage, and decided he could no longer be a part of it

It sucks having that protection and seniority for the slackers.

I've personally seen slackers and dead weight in BOTH union and non-union shops. There are people in all walks of life that do just the minimum necessary to keep off the boss's shit list, and not much more than that. And I've also seen bloody dedicated workers, both unionized and non-unionized who take pride in what they do, work to the best of their ability and give value for money to their employer.
Sure, in a non-unionized shop it's easier to fire someone, but under labour laws in most jurisdictions, you still need a valid reason besides you don't like them.
 
BMI727
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:22 am

Quoting photopilot (Reply 36):
I've personally seen slackers and dead weight in BOTH union and non-union shops.

Nobody is saying there are not non-union slackers, because there are. The issue is that the union will always defend them at all costs and make it as difficult as possible for the employer to do anything about it.

Quoting photopilot (Reply 36):
And I've also seen bloody dedicated workers, both unionized and non-unionized who take pride in what they do, work to the best of their ability and give value for money to their employer.

Similarly, unions are governed largely by seniority so a worker who is dedicated and exceptionally skilled will still be held up behind those with more experience even if they are disinterested clock punchers when it comes time to determine raises and promotions.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:40 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 37):
Nobody is saying there are not non-union slackers, because there are. The issue is that the union will always defend them at all costs and make it as difficult as possible for the employer to do anything about it.

I should know better, but when I read something so ridiculous, I cannot help myself. The Union takes your dues, the union is your agent, they cannot pick and choose who to protect, nor do they want to. It is a Union, a joining together. What damn part of that do you folks who have no job experience not understand? This BS from people who have no basis in reality by virtue of no work experience is ridiculous.
It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
 
photopilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:10 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 37):
Nobody is saying there are not non-union slackers, because there are. The issue is that the union will always defend them at all costs and make it as difficult as possible for the employer to do anything about it.

No really.... I work in management in a unionized shop and I do discipline employees as necessary, though usually only as a last resort when coaching and mentoring fail to achieve the desired outcome. I see discipline as a failure to communicate and the last option, not the first. All a union contract really does is see to it that I follow the required steps of the process step-by-step, but as long as I do, I can exercise discipline up to and including dismissal from the company.

As to your spurious claim that a union will defend them at all costs, well that's true... but ONLY to an minimal extent. The union will see that I've followed the correct steps, and at any formal interview of an employee they have the right to have a Shop-Steward present. But that really doesn't worry me... because before I'll proceed with a major misconduct case, it does make me see that all MY facts and evidence is iron-clad. It actually makes me do a better job as a Manager because it forces me to keep emotion out of the equation. The days of the boss screaming "You're Fired" for the slightest reason simply aren't there. And in a large corporation that has been unionized for many years, there is all sorts of past precedence and arbitrator's decisions that form a base level of what can and cannot be done. So we have no need to re-argue stuff that has been adjudicated many times before.
 
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deltadawg
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:17 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 8):
They did the research, they are educated people as far as I remember.

In the same vein as your asking folks to prove the article untrue, prove that the people are educated.

I am coming back into this thread late as I was away but I will accept the article at face value and believe that by in large it is true. However, one cannot deny that it was undeniably biased. My wife went to UGA Journalism School, home of the Peabody Award, and I know two journalism professors at the school and we have had discussions over the partisan biased nature of journalism that exists today. My point is that it is no longer unbiased news reporting, it is unabashed, one sided, proliferation of personal views, mostly of left leaning policies and viewpoints. That was the point of my post.

This part is more along the lines of the posts following my post. The unions decline, I personally believe, is that it has become out of touch with the common worker. It is seen as a mostly corrupt hierarchy that looks after the top brass only and continuing their power and paychecks. As Kric777 points out, the only winners from unions are unskilled, low information, less educated folks. If one has a skill that is in need or has spent the time to learn a skill that is valuable to an employer or consumer then that person can set his/her pay practically. Welders do not require massive amounts of education but do require skill to meet the welding standards of inspectors and regulations. The better a welder is and the more types of metal he can work with the more valuable his service is. If, and only if, unions stopped taking hefty dues and got out of politics would they garner the average workers respect again.
GO Dawgs, Sic' em, woof woof woof
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:26 am

Quoting deltadawg (Reply 40):
Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 8):They did the research, they are educated people as far as I remember.
In the same vein as your asking folks to prove the article untrue, prove that the people are educated.

They are Professors of Sociology at the University of Maryland and Washington. I have to think they are educated. Not as educated as some on here for sure, but educated non-the- less. Do you need a sworn document?



I will not even comment on the rest of the statement, the usual corporate, business, union hating rant.
It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
 
L410Turbolet
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:55 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 38):
I should know better, but when I read something so ridiculous, I cannot help myself. The Union takes your dues, the union is your agent, they cannot pick and choose who to protect, nor do they want to. It is a Union, a joining together. What damn part of that do you folks who have no job experience not understand?

I usually do not agree with BMI's one-dimensional world of textbook capitalism but he's spot on in this regard. Work experince or lack thererof has nothing to do with it.
If the unions act this way and protect by default even those who deserve not to be protected and defend indefensible cases of poor job performance only because the slackers are fellow gang, err I mean union members defying any notion of fairness, decency ad common sense then do not be surprised there is so much dislike for the unions.
I am (not) surprised that for all the union kool-aid you are no longer able to see there is something wrong with such approach.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 41):
They are Professors of Sociology at the University of Maryland and Washington. I have to think they are educated.

Being educated does not prevent bias. Especially in a soft science like sociology where they can "prove" basically anything they want just by asking (or not asking) certain questions and interpreting them in a certain way... as opposed to hard sciences where Newton's law of gravitation will apply regardless of one's political preferences.
 
BMI727
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:16 am

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 38):
The Union takes your dues, the union is your agent, they cannot pick and choose who to protect, nor do they want to.

Well, that's just it: they don't choose whom to protect. They are missing an "if," as in "The union is your agent as long as you uphold our standards."

If unions want credibility they should not be protecting the slackers, they should be punishing the slackers before the employer can and doing everything they can to keep such people from getting in. That would keep stories like this from happening:
http://jalopnik.com/5967123/chrysler...caught-getting-stoned-during-lunch
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
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deltadawg
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:42 pm

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 41):
Do you need a sworn document?

It would be nice to see the diplomas!   
GO Dawgs, Sic' em, woof woof woof
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:11 pm

I know it's nice to think that union membership is the silver bullet to all that ills the economy, but it misses as much context as the unions-are-all- evil on the other side. The reality is that most of the union jobs have been lost to technology, and unions have yet to find a way to deal with the churn due to tech. How would unions undo the effects of the internet that have eviscerated travel agents and airport staff? Are unions prepared to handle the explosion in 3D printing with respect to manufacturing? What about the growing sharing economy, or things like Uber that are disruptive to well entrenched taxis? Until unions figure out how to leverage technology and grow with the churn rather than just trying ot stop it, they'll be left behind.
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
KBJCpilot
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 4:32 pm

I am in sales and have 3 local unions as clients. Occasionally, I will attend their board meetings when my company's contract is up for renewal or when I see an item on their upcoming agenda that I find interesting. What has become apparent to me over the past 10 years is that the survival of the union takes a priority to everything else. The salaries and benefits of the admin and leadership come first. A such, the larger union worker base they can create then the more $$ they are paid in bonuses or salary.

Their concern for the worker comes second, or third, or fourth depending on the goals of leadership.

This is why we are seeing unions attempting to start locals in McDonald's, Wal-Mart, Burger King, etc. The unions aren't really concerned with those minimum wage earners, they are concerned with growing the union membership and the dues associated with the growth.

Unions are a necessary evil in specific instances but for the most part they are a blood-sucking parasite relying upon the host for nourishment.

Flame away.
Samsonite, I was way off!
 
johns624
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:38 pm

There must be a reason that most airline pilots are union. They are all well educated and have a very marketable skill...
 
windy95
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:03 pm

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 32):
I support the ACA.

Which is anti union.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 32):
Give me a break, slackers everywhere high, low down. I am sure you never goofed off, baloney if you deny

But slackers are more prevelant in union society. Protection really slows people down.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 32):
A ridiculous statement, contrary to the facts. CHEAP LABOR, exploitation of foreign workers

Another country having a lower cost of living than us and paying their workers less is not exploitation.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 32):
Easier than paying your fellow citizens a living wage. So much more enriching also.

What is a living wage? You keep raising the pay and you keep raising the cost of living which then makes you non-competitive to foreign labor.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 32):
Quoting windy95 (Reply 27):
By exploiting the people they supposedly saved from exploitation.

If you are referring to me and millions of others, ridiculous

There are over 150 people working in the Teamsters management that make over 150K a year. It is a scam and we are the suckers.

Quoting photopilot (Reply 36):
I've personally seen slackers and dead weight in BOTH union and non-union shops.

In aviation maintenace in all my years there have been no slackers in the non union shops that kept their job.. But tons in the union ones. A far greater ratio.

Quoting WarRI1 (Reply 38):
, the union is your agent, they cannot pick and choose who to protect,

When they protect slackers at the expense of the workers or those that follow the rules they are doing an injustice. When the union signs a contract they are stating that their workers will do X,Y and Z for work for the money being paid. They should not defend or protect workers who do not do their part.

Quoting johns624 (Reply 47):
There must be a reason that most airline pilots are union. They are all well educated and have a very marketable skill...

Pilots have a way different position compared to many other unions.
 
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WarRI1
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RE: Lost Unions, Lost Ground, Lost Wages.

Tue Sep 17, 2013 1:21 am

Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 42):
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):

Rant on.

Quoting deltadawg (Reply 44):

I am sure they are on the record. It would be stupid to claim falsely with the knowledge that the union haters are on the track, like hungry Wolves.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 45):

That has been the aim for 100 years, or more to unionize workers anywhere they could. To save them from exploitation so prevalent once again. No different than the mine workers and millions more.

Quoting KBJCpilot (Reply 46):

I never knew that, thanks for telling me.

Quoting johns624 (Reply 47):

Very good, they are in the union to protect themselves from the greedy airlines management, who would and has tried to screw them over, just like they try to screw anyone. It does not matter how skilled, how smart, how tons of them have served in our military to protect their greedy ass's.
  

Quoting windy95 (Reply 48):

Sometimes one can learn from someone's name. I will not go further, I dare not go further. I will once again bite my lip   

[Edited 2013-09-16 18:23:38]
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