RON HART: UAW’s Southern Exposure

Published: Thursday, February 20, 2014 at 03:53 PM.

Unlike the Tea Party groups targeted by Obama, unions are protected, exempt from ObamaCare and the like. The Democrats’ relationship with unions troubles me as much as Republican relationships with defense contractors.

Jobs, capital and talent can cross borders more quickly now than at any time in history. Globalization, and the reality that unions do not add to productivity, make unions dinosaurs. OSHA, the EPA and labor laws protect workers. More importantly, company owners' enlightened self-interest in having a well-compensated and productive workforce will make their businesses successful.

We are losing jobs to China, Mexico and the like. Knowing they have to face unions, whimsical Washington regulations, ObamaCare, the highest corporate tax rate and a hostile White House, companies just expand plants overseas.

There was a time when working conditions in our fledgling country were bad and labor needed a voice. Since then, OSHA, EPA, labor laws, and a vigilant press have diminished the need for unions. But like a government agency, unions continued, morphing into surly, heavy-handed and often corrupt political operations, making demands on industries they often drive into bankruptcy. Airlines, U.S. automakers, and the steel industry are heavily unionized and are consistently in bankruptcy.

Even our beloved Twinkie was forced into bankruptcy by an intransigent bakers' union. America will no longer stand for that.

The good news is that today only 12 percent of workers are union members, down from 20 percent in 1983. Membership in private sector unions has dropped even more: currently 7 percent, down from 17 percent. Governor Scott Walker is to be commended for facing down public sector unions in Wisconsin, where 80 percent of Obama’s “stimulus” money went to public sector unions for the fight.

If you wonder why unemployment is systemic under Obama, the answer is simple. He protects the high paying jobs and “Cadillac healthcare plans” of his union supporters to the detriment of other workers. These supporters then show up at his political rallies.



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