PDA

View Full Version : Do unions actually redistribute wealth?


Starwatcher162536
05-29-2009, 04:55 PM
I understand the ethical arguments for Unions and their mission statement of getting workers a bigger peice of the pie, but do they actually accomplish this?

It seems to me that companys just pass along the higher input costs of production to the consumers, resulting in higher costs of living.

In terms of actual standard of living, I have not noticed much difference between union and right to work states (Im comparing union stated to Texas).

If your goal was to give lower level workers a higher proportion of the wealth generation of a company, would it not make more sense to not set minimum wages high and instead pass regulations (company specific) that does not allow the highest paid workers to make over x multiples of that companys lowest paid worker?


Edit:
Naturally, it would have to cap total compensation/gifts, and not just pay/hour

I'm SO awesome!
05-30-2009, 01:00 AM
yeah, you kinda get what you'd expect. obviously, the auto workers became a problem but when it comes to wal-mart and starbucks - these companies are totally skimping and need someone to stand up to them through lawsuits, etc. the heroes who fought for unions in the early 20th century deserve so much credit for risking their lives to achieve the relatively easy work environment we have today because the employers used to beat the shit outta them when they'd try to unionize.
so, anyway, yes it does drive prices up for cars and education but that money creates a lot of spending power for those families. you just need a healthy balance between compensation and profits. we have so many work laws now it's easy to dismiss them as a redundancy but all you need to do is look at the working conditions in any third world country or watch video of fights/working conditions throughout most of the last century to realize how vital they were.
a cap in CEO pay would be nice but we're in america....so "things that are fair and make sense" don't tend to happen;)
oh, yeah, i forgot to add that this was why i was so glad when ronald reagan died because he slashed taxes on the rich and started a new era of union busting. once those two were set in motion, the rich commenced with inventing exotic investment strategies (using our money) that partially resulted in the disaster you see us in today. it probably wouldn't have happened if clinton were there to monitor the financial deregulation but with GW we got to see the right wing vision lived out to its fullest potential, torture and all. so, basically, reagan lead us to having the top 1% of income earners get massively richer while everyone elses income stayed relatively stagnant. thanks! i'm glad you're dead, ron!

popcorn_karate
06-01-2009, 02:51 PM
I agree with your general take here (strongly). But....

Clinton was a douche bag shill for wall street. The Democratic party is starting to get away from the DLC ("we can suck just as much wall street cock as republicans!" was there motto right?) mindset, thankfully.

a lot of the deregulation started with Clinton. he was not as bad as reagan or GWB but I don't think he was any better than GB (elder).

I'm SO awesome!
06-01-2009, 03:17 PM
i can't really comment cuz i don't follow domestic stuff too closely but i'd bet money it'd have never happened under clinton. but i did just happen across another reason why we'd be better off if reagan had never existed:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/01/opinion/01krugman.html?em

thanks, ron!