Sunday, February 20, 2011

If You're Pro American, You're Pro Union

I know that seems like a big leap, but I don't think it is. Union labor built this country and made the things we used to buy.  Now that corporations have shipped all the good manufacturing jobs overseas there are fewer good jobs here for working men and women.  About the only big unions left are the Public Sector Unions.  Support your union workers. We need them and the wages they spend in our communities.  Without them our cities would cease to be livable.  I always loved this song.  It's a relic of the days when we had healthy unions all over the country.

13 comments:

The Ex-Wiz said...

A-women!!!!

S

Kudos!

The Blog Fodder said...

I am always amazed at what is considered "UnAmerican". From my understanding and I expect that of a great many other people of the world, the things dubbed "UnAmerican" are the very things America stands for and which served to make her great.

PENolan said...

Jeez, Utah - I still remember all the words from that song. They must have run the ad a lot on The Smothers Brothers and Laugh In since that's what we were watching back then.

MRMacrum said...

The mentality of hard core patriotism exemplified by many union workers back in the day of "My country Right or Wrong", has been co-opted by the Right and turned on the very people who helped to ingrain that mentality in the beginning.

That slogan as interpreted by the Right now is "It's my country not yours - get on my bus or get the Hell out."

While my own personal experience as a teamster left me with a bad taste in my mouth, I never once felt that Unions were the root of all evil. On the contrary, I would say over all that they are a large part of why our country climbed to the top back in the 1950s and 1960s.

What they did do however was wait too long and hung stubbornly to old ways as their jobs began to trickle overseas. Now it's business as usual to ship jobs offshore.

I think the circle has closed and look to unions as one of the only things we have left to fight for what remains a paltry remnant of the manufacturing giant we once were.

Whenever possible I buy American. That's not as possible as it once was.

As usual Utah, you drive home a point no one in a leadership role seems to have noticed or if they have, have failed to mention Excellent.

TheCunningRunt said...

Unions represent people working together for their common good, refusing en mass to be powerless subjects of their Corporate Overlords, and as such are viewed as a threat to the absolute power of the Economic Oligarchy.

The Filthy Rich have convinced their unwashed henchmen, the Tea-Baggers, that unions are a Socialist Aberration, just as Government is The Enemy; in reality, both of those institutions are civilization!

And I too love and fondly remember that song - thanks for bringing it back!

no_slappz said...

As long as Americans have a choice when buying goods and services they will choose the goods and services that offer the value they want.

Hence, they may choose a Toyota instead of Ford, GM or Chrysler vehicle.

Maybe US car buyers will buy Hyundais or Kias. Or maybe they'll buy a few Cadillac Escalades.

When it comes to commodities like steel, US industries will buy a lot of steel from Korea.

When it comes to education, US buyers have no choice. Unless they have a lot of money. The US Public School System is a monopoly. Public schools maintain their dominance in the usual way of monopolies -- through pricing power.

Public schools charge tuition of $0.00. Whereas, private schools charge a lot.

Imagine if parents were given a check they could spend at the school of their choice. Would they demand the same kind of quality from schools that they demand from car-makers? Yes, they would.

There is no rationale for a union among government employees. Clearly unions can provide enough voters to win elections, thereby electing people who will vote for higher pay for those in government unions. That's nuts.

no_slappz said...

cunningrunt wrote:

Unions represent people working together for their common good, refusing en mass to be powerless subjects of their Corporate Overlords, and as such are viewed as a threat to the absolute power of the Economic Oligarchy.

Unions in manufacturing industries have been committing suicide since the 1950s, as the global shift in factory locations proves.

GM went into a Chapter 11 bankruptcy because the United Auto Workers Union refused to acknowledge the reality of the global economy.

Moreover, because the UAW is still headed and populated by nitwits, you can be sure the new -- much smaller -- GM will expand and build more factories in China before it expands here, if it exands here in the US at all.

The union members have taken their stand and the managements of the manufacturers have decided on the basis of union demands and other operating headaches that it's better to invest elsewhere -- outside the US.

no_slappz said...

mrmacrum, you wrote:

What they did do however was wait too long and hung stubbornly to old ways as their jobs began to trickle overseas.

Any union can renegotiate any contract it so desires.

Now it's business as usual to ship jobs offshore.

It's the economic concept of Comparative Advantage. There was a time when the US had the Advantage in many areas AND it was surrounded by the Atlantic and Pacific moats. But improving skills and technology in other countries and more efficient transportation changed things a lot.

I think the circle has closed and look to unions as one of the only things we have left to fight for what remains a paltry remnant of the manufacturing giant we once were.

Whatever that means. Sounds hopelessly naive to me.

Unions can smarten up and take steps to recapture some of the business US manufacturers have lost to other countries. Or, more likely, unions will fight for higher pay and benefits right down to the last job.

We've lost a lot of the steel industry, a lot of autos, 99% of the shoe industry and the textile industry.

We could easily increase the number of high paying jobs in the energy industry by simply permitting oil and gas companies to look for oil and gas in a lot more places.

MRMacrum said...

no_slapzz - Thanks so much for injecting management's view of all this. Comparative Advantage is an economic view from whose viewpoint? Management or the folks on the floor?

Sure there would be more jobs in Energy if we drilled more wells. But seeking long term economic health in an industry based on a finite resource seems so typical of US Corporate short term thinking. You want to school us on economics, then maybe you ought to try looking for new economics rather than continuing the destructive path US business seems intent on following. If we go down the tubes, management will have to eat their fair share of the blame. But they probably won't.

no_slappz said...

mrmccrum, you wrote:

Comparative Advantage is an economic view from whose viewpoint? Management or the folks on the floor?

Neither. The consumer decides.

Some people drive Toyotas, some drive Fords. Both made informed choices.

If you want to buy shoes then you will discover that 99% of all shoes sold in the US are imported. That figure of 99% is not an exaggeration. It is the real number.

Sure there would be more jobs in Energy if we drilled more wells. But seeking long term economic health in an industry based on a finite resource seems so typical of US Corporate short term thinking.

At current rates of global and domestic consumption, there's no danger of the US depleting its own supplies of oil in less than 100 years.

In case you did not know, we have already depleted our reserves of iron ore and copper, but that has not put an end to our markets or use of either metal.

You want to school us on economics, then maybe you ought to try looking for new economics rather than continuing the destructive path US business seems intent on following.

The people of the world are going to burn hydrocarbons until they are gone. While they are depleting, others will try to develop alternative energy sources. But so far, no competitove alternatives exist. Solar is decades from making a difference.

Due to its inefficiency, solar power costs as much as oil at $500 a barrel.

If we go down the tubes, management will have to eat their fair share of the blame. But they probably won't.

To develop efficient solar power or a competitive alternative to oil, we need the arrival of some new Einsteins. The only way we will get them is to go on a talent hunt and then pay to send them to MIT, CalTech, and our other superb schools of science and engineering.

The smart ones always stand out, but sometimes they don't have the money for tuition at the best schools.

It costs very little to find the smart ones and help the best of them become the scientists and engineers who do the inventing and creating.

sharin said...

I have a skirt with a union lable. It is older than I am, I got it at a garage sale. The workmanship is impeccable.

Utah Savage said...

Sharin, I shop thrift stores for the really good old designer clothes. They too carry the Union label. And they were last made in the 60s. That's when I started modeling. I worked in San Francisco, New York, and Milan in the 60s. Those clothes are hot now. And you're right. They were beautifully made.

Fran said...

Love that 1978 union clip.

It's all about cheaper labor & higher profits.
Problem with that line of thinking is if people are not working, then they are not buying.

It does not end there-- working poor buy less too- they are struggling to just pay the essentials, discretionary spending goes out the door, right along with worker's rights.