Unions make both members, nonmembers happier

Feb 25, 2011 By Susan Guibert

As the Wisconsin battle over union benefits continues to rage, the passion and commitment of people on both sides reflect that the activists are fighting over “a perennial ideological debate in American politics: whether labor unions are good or bad for society,” according to University of Notre Dame political scientist Benjamin Radcliff.

According to a study co-authored by Radcliff, people who live in countries in which membership was robust were happier – regardless of whether or not they belonged to a labor union themselves.

“There’s both a direct effect of being a member and an indirect effect,” Radcliff says.

It’s no coincidence that American workers have never been more dissatisfied with their jobs, and labor unions’ membership keeps dropping, according to Radcliff.

Examining life-satisfaction data from several European countries as well as Japan, Australia and the U.S., Radcliff and his colleagues based their study on the notion that with one’s life increasingly means happiness at work.

So what, exactly, brings workers happiness? Unions, according to Radcliff.

There are obvious benefits for members: job security, fair wages, benefits and decent hours. But for those who are not members, there is Radcliff’s “indirect effect.”

“People who have union jobs like their jobs better,” he says. “And that puts pressure on other employers to extend the same benefits and wages to compete with the union shops.”

The study also found that the lower-paid labor union members are the ones who find contentment through organized labor, rather than union members who earn the highest salaries.

Radcliff notes that happiness itself is only partially quantifiable, and to take the best measure of it, one needs to consider other factors such as unemployment rate and even church attendance.

However, there is a relationship between happiness and the density of unions in a given country. Denmark, for instance, ranks near the top in both categories, and the U.S., by contrast, ranks near the bottom for happiness in all the countries studied.

Radcliff, who specializes in comparative and American politics, is one of the world’s leading authorities on the study of politics and happiness. He has published articles on the topic in scholarly journals including the American Political Science Review, Perspectives on Politics, Social Forces, and most recently, the Journal of Politics. He is author of the book “Happiness, Economics and .”

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ereneon
2.7 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2011
Maybe this effect is just because it is only in more developed nations that people tend to have strong labor unions? Though this doesn't really apply with the Denmark example.
I think American lack of happiness has more to do with the political corruption (from both parties) that is strangling the life out of the country, rather than a single issue like unions.
ArtflDgr
2.1 / 5 (11) Feb 25, 2011
how many pills does one have to take to get those results?
ForFreeMinds
2.7 / 5 (15) Feb 25, 2011
An article showing correlation without causation. It's likely that more prosperous countries have unions, thus, the people are happier there. Poor countries (typically a result of government not protecting property and citizens, and often the home of the criminals) often don't allow unions, or the unions that exist are controlled by government.

That lower paid union members like it better than higher paid ones may reflect the fact that unions kind of average out salaries, benefiting the least productive and hurting the most productive.
ryggesogn2
1.7 / 5 (19) Feb 25, 2011
They should ask all those GM union members who reported to the rubber room or the NYC teachers who spent months in their rubber room.
How many union members want to work hard and get promoted but can't due to union rules that pay by senority?
How many union members in the USA would stop paying union dues if it was not illegal?

How many people today would be 'happy' depending upon their union bosses to take care of their job for 30 years? Are the union bosses liable for ensuring their pension will be fully funded when they retire?
draa
4.5 / 5 (8) Feb 25, 2011
And how many people today would be working 70 hr weeks. Or working weekends (if you don't already). Or how many people wouldn't even be alive today because of unsafe working conditions that unions changed. People that com[plain about unions have either never blonged to one, or don't know what the hell they're talking about. Kill the unions and kill the middle class because unions hurt the rich more than any other group. It's that simple.
Kregor
4.4 / 5 (7) Feb 25, 2011
Unions are inherently Good. As with everything in life there can be corruption. But all in all Unions have allowed people to live. By fighting for child labor laws,(which ended up putting kids in school to educate them instead of working them to death), site safety, living wage salaries, pensions, 8 hour days, lunch breaks, medical compensation, vacation time, and the list goes on. These workplace rights allow a union worker to participate within the middle class and rise up against poverty. These successful workers allows society and its people to enjoy a better quality of life. Unions help set a competitive bar for the non- union shops which have often times enacted similar work place freedoms for its non-union workers as a result of what Unions accomplished. This rised the bar for the society. A direct result of the effect of Union Activism. There is your proof.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (16) Feb 25, 2011
In the aerospace industry, the only company that has an engineering union is Boeing. It has not been very effective.
No professional organization has a union because they value their independence and expect to be compensated for the value the bring to the enterprise. If such compensation is not met, they find opportunities elsewhere.
The only 'value' I see in unions is it enables workers to get salary increases for doing the same menial job for 30 years.
Humans grow when they are challenged. How do unions enable and facilitate education and skills growth?
geokstr
1 / 5 (10) Feb 26, 2011
Public employee unions, especially cops and firefighters, calculate their pensions on a big % of their last 1-3 years working. The union-negotiated rules allow them to cash in months and years worth of sick and vacation days, assign the ones ready to retire voluminous amount of overtime, and grant promotions all for the purpose of artificially pumping up their last 1-3 years of earnings. It also allows them to retire early on "disability" and up the final pension even further.

A lot of them get hired right back at slightly reduced salaries as "consultants" while they're drawing full pensions. They get dollar one medical coverage until they die, and cost of living increases every year.

The benefits of the public sector unions are bloated beyond belief. It is this, along with the freebies to Illega...oops, Insufficiently Documented Future Democratic Voters, that are crippling every state budget. Public unions should be decertified. Even FDR warned about them.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (13) Feb 26, 2011
Public employee unions, especially cops and firefighters, calculate their pensions on a big % of their last 1-3 years working.

It's not just unions:
106 collect $100,000 or more
The number of state retirees who take home pensions of $100,000 or more has more than tripled over the past five years. One hundred six retirees, or their survivors, are paid six-figure pensions. The list is dominated by university and college officials and professors, doctors, and State Police officers. "
"Third, at just under $200,000, is William M. Bulger, the former president of the University of Massachusetts and onetime state Senate president, who won a legal battle in 2006 to boost his pension an extra $17,000 by counting his university housing allowance."
http:/www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2009/03/22/106_retirees_collect_100k_or_more_in_state_worker_retirement_benefits/
Billy is the brother of gangster Whitey Bulger.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (14) Feb 27, 2011
"They don’t want to hear any kind of viewpoint that is different from their own. That’s why they do what they do.”

Read more: http:/dailycaller.com/2011/02/27/fox-news-correspondent-on-disruptive-wisconsin-protesters-there-is-hate-in-their-eyes/#ixzz1FBNQN3bA
"

The union members in WI are not happy.

Of course this is the inevitable result of socialism, tyranny. When people don't want to be to join a union, as is the case now in WI, the socialist union members don't know how to persuade so they must coerce.
kaasinees
2.7 / 5 (12) Feb 27, 2011
Of course this is the inevitable result of socialism, tyranny


Quite the opposite.
ryggesogn2
1.5 / 5 (15) Feb 27, 2011
Of course this is the inevitable result of socialism, tyranny


Quite the opposite.

What do you do to those individuals who do not want to join your socialist club?
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (15) Feb 27, 2011
"public employment is an idealized socialist economy in miniature, including its political aspect: the grateful recipients of government largesse provide money and organizational support to re-elect the politicians who shower them with all of these benefits."
"public employment promises the full socialist ideal to a small minority-paid for with tax money looted from a larger, productive private economy. But the socialist utopia of public employment has crossed the Thatcher Line: the point at which, as the Iron Lady used to warn, you run out of other people's money."
"the generosity of these welfare-state enclaves can only be sustained by forcing everyone else to perform forced labor to pay for the benefits of a privileged few."
http:/www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/02/27/public_unions__the_socialist_utopia_109046.
Typical socialist tyranny, many pay for the few.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (15) Feb 27, 2011
""The Wisconsin Idea, as it came to be called, was that efficient government required control of institutions by the voters rather than special interests, and that the involvement of specialists in law, economics, and social and natural sciences would produce the most effective government."" {Now the special interest elites are the public unions.}
"Collective bargaining allows unions to implement nonsensical and counterproductive work rules that harm efficiency and customer service. Unions protect even the worst actors among their ranks, and, because everyone in a collective-bargaining unit essentially is treated the same, it promotes a race to the bottom in terms of performance. Collective bargaining is why it takes years to fire incompetent teachers"
http:/articles.ocregister.com/2011-02-25/news/28635055_1_public-radio-wisconsin-s-voters-wisconsin-gov/3
Unions are great until they run out of other people's money.
Caliban
3.8 / 5 (10) Feb 28, 2011
Of course this is the inevitable result of socialism, tyranny


Quite the opposite.

What do you do to those individuals who do not want to join your socialist club?


Well, since they are largely already members(or, more properly, wannabe members) of your Randian/freimarket/Corporatist ruling elite, that does pose a bit of a conundrum, does it not? However, since very few of the people you are concerned with(including yourself), will never manage to actually leverage themselves into that elite, then it is safe to say that they will be forced to subsist upon the fruits of the Union created benefit structure in their twilight years(if not before), so why shouldn't they have to pay their fair share of their own upkeep?

After all, your pals Beck, OReilly, and Limbaugh are all card-carrying union members.

Caliban
3.7 / 5 (9) Feb 28, 2011
Of course this is the inevitable result of socialism, tyranny


Quite the opposite.

What do you do to those individuals who do not want to join your socialist club?


Well, since they are largely already members(or, more properly, wannabe members) of your Randian/freimarket/Corporatist ruling elite, that does pose a bit of a conundrum, does it not? However, since very few of the people you are concerned with(including yourself), will never manage to actually leverage themselves into that elite, then it is safe to say that they will be forced to subsist upon the fruits of the Union created benefit structure in their twilight years(if not before), so why shouldn't they have to pay their fair share of their own upkeep?

After all, your pals Beck, OReilly, and Limbaugh are all card-carrying union members.

So, mangy, tell us again how this squares with your ideology?
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (14) Feb 28, 2011
After all, your pals Beck, OReilly, and Limbaugh are all card-carrying union members.

What union is that?

"Neither Glenn Beck nor I (Michele Malkin) are members."
"New York is NOT a right to work state — and AFTRA has the power to compel forced dues. "
"left-wing website does quote an inside AFTRA source confirming that Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Bill O’Reilly are AFTRA members. O’Reilly has said so on air, reportedly"
http:/michellemalkin.com/2011/02/25/stupid-lie-of-the-week-fox-news-people-are-hypocritical-aftra-members/

Just a couple of points, the AFTRA negotiates with private companies, not taxpayers.
And, as noted above, some may be forced to be in a union, or at least pay dues to a union.

The big socialist FDR did not support a govt employee union.

If unions are so great, why must people be forced to join and pay hundreds of dollars that support democrat candidates?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (8) Feb 28, 2011
"I worked for a few years in radio here in San Francisco. Membership in AFTRA was MANDITORY in order to be on the air. There was NO CHOICE. Without getting into a lot of detail which isn’t important, the AFTRA here is totally lame. Many lay-offs have occurred at stations here, and the union is powerless to do anything about it. The only people the union here has helped is people who were hired in the 80s and early 90s. At one particular station, there is a group of those longer-term employees who bargained themselves into a "special" class a few years ago—higher pay, protection from lay-offs, priority in choosing shifts, etc. The new people at that station are TOTALLY SCREWED by the union rules, and would be better off under state law if there was no union."
http:/www.uncoverage.net/2011/02/broadcasters-and-the-aftramalkinfox-kerfuffle/
Caliban
4.1 / 5 (9) Mar 01, 2011
Right to work state=no forced union membership.

But your boys are union members(minus Beck[my mistake]). Could it be that they find union membership, and access to the resources and benefits conferred thereby to be desireable?

Quote mine all you want, and the fact still remains. Again I ask:

How does this fact square with your "ideology"?
Thrasymachus
2.2 / 5 (13) Mar 01, 2011
See, what marjon dislikes are basic contracts. Individual employees get together, form an organization, and sign contracts giving the organization the ability to negotiate in their place for salaries, benefits, and advancement opportunities with employers. That organization negotiates with the employers, and get a contract with them that agrees that the employer will only hire employees who join the organization, as well as stipulate wage, benefit and advancement policies. Though all of this is done through free choice, and is constituted by explicitly protected Constitutional rights, marjon wishes it wasn't so. And because he wishes it, it becomes so in his tea-addled brain.

Marjon wants employers to have the right to run out on any agreements they make with employees, whenever they find they can squeeze an extra fraction of a percent of profit from it, or in order to alleviate deficits caused by completely separate mismanagement.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.5 / 5 (8) Mar 01, 2011
At one particular station, there is a group of those longer-term employees who bargained themselves into a "special" class a few years ago higher pay, protection from lay-offs, priority in choosing shifts, etc.
So dedicated long term employees get benefits based on seniority. Seniority is not a Union centric practice.
I worked for a few years in radio here in San Francisco. Membership in AFTRA was MANDITORY in order to be on the air. There was NO CHOICE. Without getting into a lot of detail which isn't important, the AFTRA here is totally lame.
So first, I'll use a Jon Swenson quote in rebuttal, "Don't like it? Move somewhere else."

Second, if it isn't that important to describe why AFTRA is lame, who cares to hear that AFTRA is lame? Puerile petulance appears to be a hallmark of your chosen sources for argument.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (15) Mar 01, 2011
Though all of this is done through free choice,

Thousands of people are NOT free to NOT join a union for a job because the govt FORCES people to join and PAY.
Where is the FREE choice?

But your boys are union members

Who are you talking about?

The issue is public employee unions. FDR did not support public employee unions.

The general question of being FORCED by the govt to join a union and to be forced to pay them dues is democratic? I guess it IS Democratic as that is the ONLY way the Democratic party can obtain cash to run campaigns.
ryggesogn2
1.5 / 5 (16) Mar 01, 2011
""Meticulous attention should be paid to the special relations and obligations of public servants to the public itself," FDR said in 1937. "The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service."

There's a critical difference between private sector unions and public employee unions, noted liberal Time magazine columnist Joe Klein: "Industrial unions are organized against the might and greed of ownership. Public employees unions are organized against the might and greed ... of the public?""
"The primary reason public employee unions are a bad idea is because politicians pay them off with our money. These unions receive billions from taxpayers, who in return contribute millions to the politicians who gave them those billions."
http:/www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/02/28/public_unions_a_bad_deal_for_the_public_109052.html
geokstr
1.3 / 5 (14) Mar 01, 2011
...Randian/freimarket/Corporatist ruling elite...

Freimarket??

So, you're in a basement in Germany? That helps explain a lot.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.8 / 5 (22) Mar 01, 2011
See, what marjon dislikes are basic contracts. Individual employees get together, form an organization, and sign contracts giving the organization the ability to negotiate in their place for salaries, benefits, and advancement opportunities with employers. That organization negotiates with the employers, and get a contract with them that agrees that the employer will only hire employees who join the organization
Sounds like Freemasons. And as the mafia is purportedly clandestinely involved in most unions, its kind of the same thing isnt it? You like secret criminal organizations Thrash?
Thrasymachus
2 / 5 (12) Mar 01, 2011
There's nothing secret or criminal about employee unions, otto. And you're the one who worships secret criminal organizations, remember your "world history is engineered by powerful, clandestine individuals who manage to transmit their intent across generations and cultures leaving no trace of their activities" theory?

Skeptic_Heretic
4.6 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2011
""Meticulous attention should be paid to the special relations and obligations of public servants to the public itself," FDR said in 1937. "The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service."
One must wonder why you oscillate between calling FDR the socialist overlord, and then utilizing his quotes as though you consider him a political or social methodology scholar.

Which is it Mr. Swenson? Is FDR a quotable authority on the dangers of socialist unionization, or a 'dirty socialist usurper'? Choose wisely, at least more wisely than you've constructed your arguments.
Thrasymachus
2.5 / 5 (11) Mar 01, 2011
Once again, marjon, those employee unions negotiated in good faith with the administrations of their local and state governments to secure their agreement that they would only hire members of their employee organization. You want politicians to be able to abandon the government's agreements with their employees at their political whim. And it's those politicians that public employee unions protect public employees against. It protects them from being whipping boys for politicians looking to gin up some outrage to get themselves elected.

It's also worth noting that public employees, even in mandatory union states, earn about 15% less than their public sector counterparts compared in terms of level of education, even factoring in benefits. People go into public service to make the world a better place, not to get rich or live high on the hog on someone else's efforts. If you want to do that, you become a politician, like you.
Caliban
4.3 / 5 (6) Mar 01, 2011
...Randian/freimarket/Corporatist ruling elite...

Freimarket??

So, you're in a basement in Germany? That helps explain a lot.


And your complete lack of any powers of observation or analysis explains even more.

Now go away before I ridicule you again, troll.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2011
Now go away before I ridicule you again, troll.
Was his mother a hampster? Did his father smell of elderberries?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (7) Mar 01, 2011
Now go away before I ridicule you again, troll.

That's all leftlings can do. They can make no rational argument for their fantasies.

You want politicians to be able to abandon the government's agreements with their employees at their political whim.

The politicians are following the orders of THEIR employers, the PEOPLE who pay the bills.
That's what all you socialists want is it not? Follow the will of the people?
Govts around the country have very detailed rules for hiring and firing without the need for unions. That is one reason why so many govts contract services because it is so difficult to fire a govt employee. It is much easier to terminate the contract of a service provider.
Not long ago, the superintendent of a RI school (Central Falls) fired all teachers. She had to fire all in order to be able to encourage teachers to perform.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2011
That's what all you socialists want is it not? Follow the will of the people?
Actually no. Following the will of the people is Democracy. Socialism is an economic framework in which goods are distributed according to need, not means. The two often operate together to ensure social stability.
Govts around the country have very detailed rules for hiring and firing without the need for unions.
Because of the Federal regulations fought for and gained by Unions.
Caliban
3.5 / 5 (6) Mar 02, 2011
The politicians are following the orders of THEIR employers, the PEOPLE who pay the bills.


Well, bless my hide -mangy(nowrintintin) unwittingly speaks the TRUTH for once.
That's right, mangy -the politicians ARE following the orders of THEIR employers -the Corporations(ie, Koch, A.L.E.C., US Chamber of Commerce, Freedomworks) because those are the people who got them elected.

And now, their employers expect them to do their job. Thusly, we see the likes of totally preemptive legislative attacks(among others) on legally established individual and collective rights in Wisconsin, Ohio, and Indiana.

Mangy's mind is so deranged by fear that the freemarket coup being arranged by the RightWhack, and cheerleaded by Fux Yous will fail, that he forgot to tell a lie.

Sign of the times, y'all.
And a hopeful one, at that.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (7) Mar 02, 2011
I sincerely hope public union member's, who work for the taxpayers, continue to riot and act in an uncivil manner. A Democrat legislator threatened a new Republican legislator in WI telling her she 'was dead'.
2012 is just around the corner.

Cali asserts the gov in Wi bought and paid for by businesses that create jobs and generate tax revenue in the state.
But Cali, and others here, obviously defend the coercive tactics of unions that force members to join and pay dues that are used to buy politicians that promote more union actions that require higher taxes and create ZERO private sector, wealth creating jobs.

It has been said govts can't go out of business. YES, they can and have. http:/www.cnbc.com/id/40791768/Alabama_Town_s_Failed_Pension_Is_a_Warning

But, the federal govt can just print more money and make everything all better, right?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.7 / 5 (24) Mar 02, 2011
There's nothing secret or criminal about employee unions, otto
"A majority of the locals in most major cities of the United States in the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), Hotel and Restaurant Employees Union (HRE), Laborers International Union of North America (Laborers), and International Longshoreman's Association (ILA) unions are completely dominated by organized crime"

-It's funny how you feel you can state bullshit with aplomb and have it go unnoticed. And as this union corruption thing is also common knowledge it shows either how self-deluded you are or how easily you can choose to lie. I'm sure that you feel justified in some metaphysical way.

It also shows the lengths you will go to support your stunted concepts of reality, in your own mind.
Modernmystic
1.9 / 5 (9) Mar 02, 2011
Why don't they do an study correlating union membership and job performance...

Or is that unimportant? Is it more important that our education is ABYSMAL as long as we FEEL happy?

Pffft.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.2 / 5 (24) Mar 02, 2011
It's also worth noting that public employees, even in mandatory union states, earn about 15% less than their public sector counterparts compared in terms of level of education, even factoring in benefits.
Another lie. Arrogance? Laziness? Or just a disregard for truth and fairplay?
"Wisconsin is one of 41 states where public employees earn higher average pay and benefits than private workers in the same state"
http
://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2011-03-01-1Apublicworkers01_ST_N.htm

As you rarely reference your proclamations they should all be considered suspect.
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (11) Mar 02, 2011
A study by EPI comparing public sector workers to private sector workers found that once you factor in things like education, Wisconsin public employees earn 8.4% less than otherwise similar private sector employees.
/epi.3cdn.net/9e237c56096a8e4904_rkm6b9hn1.pdf
A separate study found that state workers earn 11% less while local workers earn 12% less than private sector workers when compared using a variety of earnings determinants.
/www.slge.org/vertical/Sites/{A260E1DF-5AEE-459D-84C4-876EFE1E4032}/uploads/{03E820E8-F0F9-472F-98E2-F0AE1166D116}.PDF

Your USA Today nonsense is uncorrected data. It compares the salaries of teachers with Master's degrees with high school dropout retail clerks. When you compare apples to apples using levels of education, no state in the union pays its public sector employees more than they would have gotten in the private sector.

Butthurt much otto? Must suck to be a troll like marjon or Alizee.
ryggesogn2
1.3 / 5 (12) Mar 02, 2011
Defined benefit cost (%): Private: (1.1 1.1 1.3 2.6 2.2 2.8) Public: 7.4 (epi source above)

"Retirement benefits also account for a substantially greater share of public employee compensation costs: 8% compared with 4.6% in private sector organizations with more than 100 employees."

This is where the budget time bombs lie. Past administrations failed to fully fund these retirement plans which is also happening on the federal level with SS.
A town in AL stopped paying retirement as they had NO money.

no state in the union pays its public sector employees more than they would have gotten in the private sector.

Nor should they, but try to fire a public sector employee.

salaries of teachers with Master's degrees with high school dropout retail clerks

Who were the teachers of these high school dropout retail clerks? Why couldn't these 'master' teachers keep these students in school?
ryggesogn2
1.9 / 5 (14) Mar 02, 2011
EPI board of directors:
Anna Burger
Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and Change-to-Win
Anna Burger is both a top ranking officer at SEIU, the nation's largest and fastest growing union, and chair of the Change-to-Win Labor federation.
Larry Cohen
Communications Workers of America (CWA)
Larry CohenServing as the fourth President in the history of the Communications Workers of America’s union,

R. Thomas Buffenbarger
International Association of Machinists & Allied Workers (IAMAW)
Leo W. Gerard
United Steelworkers of America (USWA)
Gerald W. McEntee
American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
Robert B. Reich
University of California, Berkeley
Andrew L. Stern
Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
Richard L. Trumka
AFL-CIO
Randi Weingarten
Randi WeingartenAmerican Federation of Teachers

Methinks EPI is BIASED towards unions.
Thrasymachus
2 / 5 (12) Mar 02, 2011
Those retirement plans were negotiated in good faith by the employees with their employers. You want employers to be able to run out on their agreements with their employees whenever it's convenient. Leaving aside the fact that the public sector employees in WI have already agreed to the cuts in benefits and wages proposed in the budget and are only trying to protect their rights to continue to bargain collectively, it's a matter of opinion whether the agreements are budget bombs. One could equally argue that it's the hundreds of billions of dollars in tax loopholes for the very wealthy and corporations that's responsible for budget shortfalls. Balancing a budget is a matter of priorities. Republicans make it clear that their priorities are with the wealthy and against everybody else.

Thrasymachus
1.9 / 5 (13) Mar 02, 2011
Public sector employees can be fired, but they can't be fired without cause because they're not employment-at-will employees. They have a proprietary interest in their job because they are also citizens. Public employees have two incentives to keep from bankrupting the government. First, they'd be out of a job, second they'd be out of a government. Only Republicans and their political allies have an interest in bankrupting government.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (5) Mar 02, 2011
It's irrelevant to the point you were making Thras. The fact is when you add in all their benefits public employees are paid and obscene amount for the service they provide on average.
ereneon
2.7 / 5 (7) Mar 02, 2011
Most of the "Good" things unions do which were cited above (Child labor laws, safety laws, etc.) were done over 50 years ago. I agree that the unions had their place then, but now they have become so corrupt that they only really exist to fight political battles to keep themselves around.
If workers want to unionize, that is fine, but they should never be forced to. There have been many cases of intimidation by unions to force everyone to join, and this is just sad.
One of the best teachers I had in high school was forced to leave by the union because he voluntarily chose to teach extra courses (he wanted to add AP computer science, since my particularly sub-standard school had no computer science) that were beyond the union allowed number.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (23) Mar 02, 2011
Butthurt much otto? Must suck to be a troll like marjon or Alizee.
-What- yours didnt bleed a little when you pulled that 15% number out of it? Or when you shat out that 8.4% number when its actually 4.8% in the article you referenced? You proved yourself a fabricator once again.

EPI board of directors...
-And thank you fellow troll.

A curious factoid from your NIRS paper:

"The earliest econometric study, published by Smith in 1976, found that state and local public sector workers enjoyed a negligible earnings advantage of 1 to 2 percentage points."

-Which means they were equivalent back then. Since then govt bureaucracy has expanded enormously. One can only surmise that salaries were depressed in order to keep budgets in check, and that both management and unions were complicit in this. Both benefit from more members and employees.

After all, what good are these parasitic unions if they have failed to keep compensation comparable? I SMELL CONSPIRACY-
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (11) Mar 02, 2011
@MM No, the fact is that public sector employees are paid less than their private sector counterparts for the services they perform. Their compensation on average is neither outrageous, nor even above the compensation enjoyed by private sector employees with comparable levels of education. The claim that public employee compensation is breaking the budget is what's irrelevant, because the budget is out of balance because Republicans keep cutting tax revenue, and handing out corporate subsidies to those who least need them, like the Oil Companies.

@otto 15% is the national average difference between public employee compensation and private employee compensation, corrected for education levels. The 4.8% cited is after factoring in annual hours worked, which is a bogus addition because most state employees are teachers who work more than their listed 40 hrs/wk. The accurate measure is the 8.2% listed in the paragraph above.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 02, 2011
Those retirement plans were negotiated in good faith by the employees with their employers.

No, they were not. The 'employer' had little incentive to negotiate in good faith and every incentive to favor the unions that funded their election campaigns.
Now the taxpayers have had enough and voted FOR politicians who promised to negotiate in good faith for all voters, not just the special interest govt employees.
Even the 'liberals' in MA have had enough of bloated govt pensions.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.1 / 5 (21) Mar 02, 2011
Bureaucracies are built on duplicating services and hiring many more employees than are required. This often results in having to pay individuals less.

"The U.S. government could save tens of billions of dollars a year by streamlining a bloated federal bureaucracy..."

Some examples:
"Among the duplications listed in the report, the GAO found 80 programs that provide services for "transportation-disadvantaged persons."
"The GAO also identified 82 programs aimed at improving teacher quality spread across ten different federal agencies. "Proliferation of programs complicates federal efforts to invest dollars effectively," the report states flatly."
http
://money.cnn.com/2011/03/01/news/economy/gao_report_government_duplication/?iid=MPM

Must suck to be a troll like marjon or Alizee.
-So otto is a troll when he embarrasses Trashy by exposing the lies he posts? It will happen much more often.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.2 / 5 (22) Mar 02, 2011
@otto 15% is the national average difference between public employee compensation and private employee compensation, corrected for education levels.
Sorry this figure is cited in neither of your 2 union lapdog-generated papers. Can you cite a more credible source than your butt please?
Caliban
3.7 / 5 (6) Mar 02, 2011
I sincerely hope public union member's, who work for the taxpayers, continue to riot and act in an uncivil manner.


Are you talking about Fux Yous coverage? It's a sham, including STOCK footage of protests elsewhere. But that's what you get with Fux Yous.

But Cali, and others here, obviously defend the coercive tactics of unions that force members to join and pay dues that are used to buy politicians that promote more union actions that require higher taxes and create ZERO private sector, wealth creating jobs.


Unions bargained for in good faith, and which can be disbanded, unencumbered or disencumbered by a vote of the membership. That's different than being vitiated by EXECUTIVE or LEGISLATIVE FIAT(paid for by corporocrats.

While it's true Unions don't create jobs, they do raise the bar for other employers in terms of the compensation and benefits they have to offer to employees in order to get them to come to work for them, moron.

ryggesogn2
1.1 / 5 (10) Mar 02, 2011
Do university professors have a union?

Unions bargained for in good faith,

I guess that depends upon what you mean by 'faith'. Public sector unions can threaten the job of the politician they are 'negotiating' with their campaign contributions.

Unions don't create jobs

Have you noticed unemployment is quite high? If unions don't create jobs, then their continued usefulness to improve the economy is questionable.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (7) Mar 02, 2011
Another example of 'liberal' civility:

"State Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh), who was just recently busted in a prostitution sting, made a very threatening statement towards conservative Rep. Michelle Litjens last Friday after the Assembly voted to engross the Budget Repair Bill.

Hintz, who was shouting along with several other Democratic colleagues, turned to female colleague Rep. Michelle Litjens and said: "You are f***king dead!""
http:/www.postchronicle.com/news/original/article_212351818.shtml
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (3) Mar 02, 2011
I guess that depends upon what you mean by 'faith'. Public sector unions can threaten the job of the politician they are 'negotiating' with their campaign contributions.

Just as corporations can thanks to Citizens United. Talk about orwellian named.
ryggesogn2
1.4 / 5 (9) Mar 03, 2011
I guess that depends upon what you mean by 'faith'. Public sector unions can threaten the job of the politician they are 'negotiating' with their campaign contributions.

Just as corporations can thanks to Citizens United. Talk about orwellian named.


I don't see any connection. Public employee union members are paid with taxes controlled by politicians. Politicians receive union dues (taxpayer funded) to promote and defend public unions. BOTH parties in the 'negotiation' support and promote unions. What's to negotiate?
Thrasymachus
1.4 / 5 (9) Mar 03, 2011
"Good faith" negotiation means that you can expect the other side to do their utmost to fulfill the terms of the bargain. Public employees bargain in good faith, as evidenced by the fact that they are willing to take cuts in wages and benefits prescribed by politicians. Now, they're only trying to protect their right to bargain. Republicans would rather the government be able to dictate wages, working conditions and benefits, you know, like a communist dictatorship.

And marjon, you know full and well that there are other funders for politicians. Corporate and private contributions to politicians dwarf union contributions overall, and especially when it comes to Republican politicians. Your vicious circle is just people using their own money, not taxpayers money, to ensure fair and adequate representation in wage, working condition and benefits negotiation. Why are Republicans so scared of negotiating? Is it because their ideology is built on a foundation of sand?
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (4) Mar 03, 2011
Public employees bargain in good faith, as evidenced by the fact that they are willing to take cuts in wages and benefits prescribed by politicians.


*snicker*
Thrasymachus
2.2 / 5 (11) Mar 03, 2011
Snicker all you want MM. The public employees union in WI has already agreed to the wage and benefits cuts in the Republican budget. They are protesting the attempt to strip them of their collective bargaining rights as well in the same bill. The current union fight is not about budgets. Budgets are just the excuse Republicans are using to attack unions for purportedly ideological reasons that really just boil down to Republican corruption.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (5) Mar 03, 2011
Snicker all you want MM. The public employees union in WI has already agreed to the wage and benefits cuts in the Republican budget. They are protesting the attempt to strip them of their collective bargaining rights as well in the same bill. The current union fight is not about budgets. Budgets are just the excuse Republicans are using to attack unions for purportedly ideological reasons that really just boil down to Republican corruption.


*snicker*

The reason they do this, is because they know they can come back next year and get it all back with their collective bargaining. The politicians know this too because it's what they ALWAYS do. That's why they NEED to be stripped of them, so they can't come back like the little piglets they are and suck the coffers dry again.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 03, 2011
MM, are you suggesting that we should strip the right to assemble into a coordinated group from the workplace? That isn't exactly far from totalitarian.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Mar 03, 2011
MM, are you suggesting that we should strip the right to assemble into a coordinated group from the workplace? That isn't exactly far from totalitarian.


They're government employees, are you suggesting we should let cops strike? That isn't exactly far from anarchy...
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.3 / 5 (19) Mar 03, 2011
And marjon, you know full and well that there are other funders for politicians. Corporate and private contributions to politicians dwarf union contributions
Not necessarily when illicit contributions are coming from elements of organized crime.

"Action must be taken to eliminate this syndicate control. Not only is this syndicate domination a national disgrace, it is a threat to the free competition to certain parts of the economy.
http
://www.americanmafia.com/Crime_And_Labor.html
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 03, 2011
Corporate and private contributions to politicians dwarf union contributions overall, and especially when it comes to Republican politicians.


""We spent a fortune to elect Barack Obama -- $60.7 million to be exact -- and we're proud of it," boasted Andy Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union"
"Obama champions the SEIU's top legislative priorities: expansive government health care (paid for with regressive sin taxes) and the "Employee Free Choice Act" to do away with private-ballot union elections in the workplace. He has SEIU-blessed bureaucrats installed in every corner of his administration to carry out the agenda."
"Last week Obama slashed the Labor Department's funding to investigate union corruption "
"the Obama White House gave the SEIU an unprecedented role in negotiations over federal stimulus funds."
http:/www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/05/13/big_labors_investment_in_obama_pays_off_96469.html
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 04, 2011
The first priority of a politician is to be re-elected.
The first priority of a union boss is increase the size of his union.
The first priority of a business owner is profit.
The firs priority of an employee is to keep his job by being productive helping his employer make a profit to keep the business open.
The union boss and politician don't have support for the employee on their priority list. It is the business owner, because of his self interest in making a profit, that best supports the priority of the worker.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 04, 2011
The story of the Emperor Has No Clothes is playing out before us.
Headlines:
"Greenspan Says Government Activism Hampering U.S. Recovery"

"Daley: We're a 'country of whiners' "
"Our teachers work six hours a day. Six hours a day. What do you think of that? Thirty hours a week, Daley said. Im not condemning all the teachers, but you know, there has to be a time and place for everybody to have to give to the less fortunate. Unions have to understand, that you have a responsibility. Its not just a paycheck. "
http:/newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/clout_st/2011/03/daley-were-a-country-of-whiners.html

It reminds me of those RETIRED climatologists who don't support AGW.

TheGhostofOtto1923
3.3 / 5 (21) Mar 04, 2011
The firs priority of an employee is to keep his job by being productive helping his employer make a profit to keep the business open.
You lost your tempo there. The first priority of a worker is to earn a decent living. You're implying a partnership between labor and management which is a secondary priority, in your hierarchy of priorities there.
"Our teachers work six hours a day. Six hours a day.
So do our bankers. Teachers typically spend extra time before and after with lesson plans, grading, tutoring, continuing ed, etc.
Caliban
3.5 / 5 (4) Mar 04, 2011
The first priority of a politician is to be re-elected.
The first priority of a business owner is profit.
The firs priority of an employee is to keep his job by being productive helping his employer make a profit to keep the business open.


These assertions are symptoms of mangy(nowrintintin)'s disease.

The first priority of a politician is to serve his "constituency" ie, either the interests of ALL the citizens of his district, or to serve his own interests(constituency of one).

The first priority of a business owner is to keep his business VIABLE. Profit is a secondary motive, since it is variable, and usually doesn't include his own salary and benefits, and indeed,(usually) a large portion of his living expenses, to boot.

The first priority of a worker is as otto states.

You can expect the bill for our treatment of your disease to arrive shortly. Remember -we don't make housecalls.

Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (3) Mar 04, 2011
The first priority of a politician is to be re-elected.
Of course a retard who hates Chicago politics would quotemine the former mayor of Chicago to attempt to prove the point he's paid to prove.

Isn't that right, Mr. Swenson?

Jon Swenson, of Chelmsford MA, will be re-running to sit on the agricultural commision, a pensioned, budgeted group from which he sits and cries about the money spent on the very job in which he profits.

Make sure you follow his ideology and call the offices of Chelmsford MA and make sure that the agricultural commision is sacked, including their benefits and pension. Support Jon Swenson, by taking his job, and ill gotten gains away from him, as he calls on you to do.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 05, 2011
The first priority of a politician is to serve his "constituency"

That is not what Senator Lieberman told his staff.
The first priority of a business owner is to keep his business VIABLE.

If a business does not make a profit, they are no longer viable. Unless they are the federal govt and can print money.
Caliban
3.8 / 5 (4) Mar 05, 2011
The first priority of a politician is to serve his "constituency".
That is not what Senator Lieberman told his staff.


Ah, you mean "Elephant in Ass's clothing" Lieberman? Are we to expect any different from him? Do we expect any different from those you support? Piss on Lieberman -he's a Corporatist tool, like the rest of your boys.

The first priority of a business owner is to keep his business VIABLE.

If a business does not make a profit, they are no longer viable. Unless they are the federal govt and can print money.


That's a load, mangy, and you know it. By that yardstick, Amazon, Google, AOL, heck -even Microsoft would have never made it in the eat-your-own-children, profit-crazy, damn-the-consequences madhouse that is your much beloved freimarket.

You can't even be consistent with your own lies anymore, since you've completely lost touch with reality.

Is that YOU, Swenson?

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Mar 05, 2011
Amazon and Microsoft ARE examples of free market successes.

A business that does not take in more money from the sale of its products and services than it spends (makes a profit) will go out of business.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Mar 05, 2011
"LaRose, a 31-year-old Iraq war veteran, was the tiebreaking vote in Ohios Senate, which just sent a bill similar to Wisconsins budget bill to the States House of Representatives. That caused Michael Piotrowski, the general counsel for the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), to siege LaRoses Facebook page.

Funny thing about cops, Piotrowski posted on LaRoses Facebook wall, they hold a grudge. In another comment responding to someones criticism of his comment, Piotrowski wrote: Nick, with all due respect, I dont care about your views. You dont know what you are talking about.

Perhaps most surprisingly, though, the cop unions top lawyer compared Republicans calling union violence union thugs to using the n-word. When Republicans talk about Union Thugs, they may as well be calling people the n-word."

Read more: http://dailycalle...FlHxboy8

Happy in OH?
Caliban
3.8 / 5 (4) Mar 05, 2011
Amazon and Microsoft ARE examples of free market successes.

A business that does not take in more money from the sale of its products and services than it spends (makes a profit) will go out of business.


Total mangynoise. Go educate yourself in the real world, and then apologize for lying repeatedly to everyone who is reading your posts. A quick check will show you that Amazon took YEARS from startup to turn a profit.

According to your lie, they should have fallen by the wayside long ago -another victim of the ineluctable Darwinistic forces of your freimarket.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 05, 2011
"The viability of a business is measured by its long-term survival, and its ability to have sustainable profits over a period of time. If a business is viable, it is able to survive for many years, because it continues to make a profit year after year. The longer a company can stay profitable, the better its viability."
http://biztaxlaw....lity.htm

Amazon took YEARS from startup to turn a profit.

So? Their investors, people who bought their stock, believed they would become profitable and repay their investment.
That's free market capitalism at work.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (3) Mar 05, 2011
Perhaps most surprisingly, though, the cop unions top lawyer compared Republicans calling union violence union thugs to using the n-word. When Republicans talk about Union Thugs, they may as well be calling people the n-word.
It was a commentary about undue generalization. I agree with the officer.
Caliban
4 / 5 (4) Mar 07, 2011
"The viability of a business is measured by its long-term survival, and its ability to have sustainable profits over a period of time. If a business is viable, it is able to survive for many years, because it continues to make a profit year after year. The longer a company can stay profitable, the better its viability."
http://biztaxlaw....lity.htm

Amazon took YEARS from startup to turn a profit.

So? Their investors, people who bought their stock, believed they would become profitable and repay their investment.
That's free market capitalism at work.


Too late to reverse yourself now, moron- you have already STATED, and then RESTATED- that an owner's number one priority is PROFIT, and if profit is not being made, then it's a failed enterprise. Amazon(and uncounted others) required extended periods before they began to turn a profit.

Which is the antithesis of your assertion, and proves you to be wrong, you carpetbagger.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Mar 08, 2011
By definition, a business cannot be viable without profit.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2011
By definition, a business cannot be viable without profit.

Except for non-profit businesses, that can and do exist, without government backed help.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (6) Mar 08, 2011
By definition, a business cannot be viable without profit.

Except for non-profit businesses, that can and do exist, without government backed help.


Non-profits turn a profit or they're not viable either. It's not possible to stay in business and not make more than you spend...unless you have the government "re-distributing" some wealth in your favor.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Mar 08, 2011
By definition, a business cannot be viable without profit.

Except for non-profit businesses, that can and do exist, without government backed help.

They still need to earn enough money to pay the bills and can disburse the leftover (profit) as they choose.
Skeptic_Heretic
2.3 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2011
They still need to earn enough money to pay the bills and can disburse the leftover (profit) as they choose.
They don't turn a profit. Non-profit businesses aren't allowed to turn a profit, yet they survive.

This goes directly against your paradigm of companies required to make a profit, Mr. Swenson. Secondly, most companies do not turn a profit for several years after inception. Someone who had a grasp of the business world would know that. I know Modernmystic knows it, I know I know it, seems everyone here knows this except you.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Mar 08, 2011
They don't turn a profit. Non-profit businesses aren't allowed to turn a profit, yet they survive.

Again, they still need to attract revenue to pay their expenses. They can't print money like the federal govt or force union members to pay dues.
Skeptic_Heretic
2.7 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2011
Again, they still need to attract revenue to pay their expenses. They can't print money like the federal govt or force union members to pay dues.
Everyone, including governments, need to attract revenue to pay their dues. That isn't your stance. Your stance is that a company must make MORE than their dues in order to survive, and that's not true, even by your own admission.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2011
"If a business does not make a profit,"

"Business: A commercial activity engaged in as a means of livelihood or profit, or an entity which engages in such activities.

Read more: http://www.invest...G3flRip5
"
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Mar 08, 2011
Business: A commercial activity engaged in as a means of livelihood or profit, or an entity which engages in such activities.

'Or' can be an important word. It typically delineates prerequisites or a choice. Example: you can have chicken or fish on this flight.

In your lexicon, 'or' must mean 'and'. No wonder you always screw up these political conversations. When someone says, "we must have universal healthcare or American health will continue to decline" your mind must be replacing the word 'or' with 'and'. Silly me. I just thought you were retarded.
Modernmystic
1.1 / 5 (7) Mar 09, 2011
They don't turn a profit. Non-profit businesses aren't allowed to turn a profit, yet they survive.


Patently false. They are allowed to turn a profit, it just has to stay "in house".

For someone who claims to run a business you sure as hell don't know much about it.

http://en.wikiped...nization
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Mar 09, 2011
Patently false. They are allowed to turn a profit, it just has to stay "in house".
If you are forced to spend it, it is not a profit.

Your source lays it plain in the very first paragraph. NPO's are exempt from income. "Profit" is a word with a very specific legal meaning. Profit is a return in excess of operating costs. NPOs cannot have a return in excess of operating costs, they can have a budget surplus. All dollars must be provisioned prior to the end of a fiscal year. It is not "profit" it is surplus funds. Profit doesn't need to go into a budget, surplus does. Big difference.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Mar 09, 2011
From the source:

"While they are able to earn a profit, more accurately called a surplus, such earnings must be retained by the organization for its self-preservation, expansion and future plans."

Call if a surplus if you want to, it still means they're making more than they earn. That's a profit. If you're not earning a profit eventually you're going under it's just that simple.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Mar 09, 2011
"While they are able to earn a profit, more accurately called a surplus, such earnings must be retained by the organization for its self-preservation, expansion and future plans."
Yes, it has to already be spent.
Call if a surplus if you want to, it still means they're making more than they earn. That's a profit.
No it isn't, there is a difference and that difference delineates one of the major contrasts between for profit and not for profit.
If you're not earning a profit eventually you're going under it's just that simple.
But going under doesn't mean going out of business, as Mr. Swenson argues. Like I said, most of us recognize that businesses typically do not turn a profit, and typically lose money for the first few years.
report abuse quote send PM
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Mar 09, 2011
businesses typically do not turn a profit, and typically lose money for the first few years.

Caliban used the term 'viable business'. Any business that want to be viable needs to make more money than they spend or their investors will make them unviable. Unless, of course, the 'business' is the federal govt that can print money.
But, eventually, even govts run out of others people's money and they must collapse.