The Case Against Public Sector Unions

Professor Bainbridge eloquently makes the case:

A core problem with public sector unionism is that it creates a uniquely powerful interest group. In theory, bureaucrats are supposed to work for and be accountable to the elected representatives of the people. But suppose those bureaucrats organize into large, well-funded, powerful unions that can tip election results. With very few and very unique exceptions, no workplace in which the employees elect the supervisors functions well for long.

* * *

In effect, public sector unionism thus means that representatives of the union will often be on both sides of the collective bargaining table. On the one side, the de jure union leaders. On the other side, the bought and paid for politicians. No wonder public sector union wages and benefits are breaking the back of state budgets. They are bargaining with themselves rather than with an arms’-length opponent.

Meanwhile, Daniel DiSalvo quotes FDR — no enemy of private sector unions — on their public counterparts:

F.D.R. believed that “[a] strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to obstruct the operations of government until their demands are satisfied. Such action looking toward the paralysis of government by those who have sworn to support it is unthinkable and intolerable.”

In Wisconsin, unionists have used their political power to extract unsustainable benefits along with generous compensation from bought and paid for politicians, virtually all of which are Democrats.  The voters finally had enough and installed a Republican legislature and governor. 

Rather than accept the will of the voters, the Democrat politicians fled the state, and their union masters have effectively shut down the Wisconsin schools and legislature.  This “manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to obstruct the operations of government until their demands are satisfied.”  It is anti-democratic to the core.

Meanwhile, President “Elections have Consequences” is backing and helping organize the protestors.

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Published in: on February 18, 2011 at 2:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

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