The Property Rights View -> my exchange with a Union Steward

  • Posted on: 13 November 2012
  • By: Gene Balfour

A long time friend of mine, Rick, had passed "The Property Rights View" paper  to a union steward where ho works . Our exchange [below]  is an interesting one .... 

Rick,

Please tell your friend that he is the one with flawed reasoning. All government employees receive most [if not all] their incomes from taxation. By contrast, in the private sector, wages are paid  from operating revenues  generated through the wealth-creating, customer-serving and voluntary purchasing decisions of citizens. Advances in union member compensations have been achieved by the unethical collective actions of unions who employ blackmail methods to obtain their gains rather than the one-to-one negotiations between employee [singular] and employer that occur in non-union work places. To say that the "negotiations tactics" employed by a unionized workforce is 'an extension of this model'  is the same as saying that the thuggish "negotiation tactics of an organized crime syndicates  is no different 2 boys trading hockey cards in the schoolyard.  They only reason why unions can get away with these criminal actions is that they hold a government-supported monopoly-labour position with the employers with whom they have been forced to make contract under the threat of a strike or work slowdown [ read  a 'productivity brake']. If unions were to be legally prevented from practicing any work stoppage/slowdown activities - ie. the one's that destroy the property values of the employers/business owners- then unfettered market forces that will allow employers to hire available/willing individual workers would act to eliminate the consequences of this union cancer.Your friend needs to remember that the jobs BELONG to the business owners and any collective action to force a change in the employment terms reached with their employees should be treated as a violation of private property rights and punishable by that same laws that try vandals for vandalism or embezzlers for corporate theft.I gather that your friend has been drinking the union cool-aid for many years. He seems ideologically left of Karl Marx .  Thank him for his comments [ as misguided as they are] :-) Gene 
On Nov 11, 2012, at 11:53 AM, Rick wrote:
Hello Gene,As I mentioned, my office mate is a lawyer and (to be fair) the union steward where I work . I am always interested in disparate points of view. Hers is a different perspective than yours and is shown below:Cheers, RickThanks Rick. Your friend Gene raises interesting points. However, I don't agree with his position and find that it has several flaws.One example of flawed reasoning is that taxpayers are left paying for union "shenanigans". He speaks of unionized workers as though they are not taxpayers. The opposite is true: unionized workers are always taxpayers. In fact, as a result of the union movement, unionized workers earn higher incomes and therefore pay higher taxes. Accordingly, unionized workers are shouldering a large part of any costs to taxpayers.Second, most business owners subscribe to a free market economy model underscored by the recognition that individuals in the market place naturally leverage his/her strengths for greater advantage. A unionized workforce is an extension of this model. It is no different than a supplier who has contracted with a business and who leverages the uniqueness of its supply (I.e. Product or service) for the greatest benefit to it. Likewise a business owner will "low ball" suppliers if there are many too choose from. This is simply the way it works and is no more criminal because workers are engaging in the same commonplace tactics.There are further flaws, in my view. I'd be interested in further discussion...See you tomorrow.