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Private vs Public Sector Unions - Apples and Oranges

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posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 01:26 PM
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There is a popular perception that public sector unions are equivalent to private, this is not true.

We are being bankrupted as a country by public sector unions. Salaries, benefits, pensions and other ancillary costs are soaring.

By far the biggest threat is the self reinforcing nature of the process itself and the political clout that these monstrosities wield.

Public-sector unions interfere with the public interest




America’s public-sector unions are on the defensive. Wisconsin has stripped them of most collective-bargaining rights and ended mandatory dues payments. Union-negotiated pension benefits are linked to the fiscal plight of cities from San Jose to bankrupt Detroit.





It may be only a matter of time before these disparate debates converge and squarely pose the question that lies at the root of them all: Is public-sector collective bargaining in the public interest?

The answer is no. All members of the public use schools, roads, parks and other government services — and pay taxes to support them. Their interest lies in receiving the highest-quality services at the lowest feasible cost. Period.

Public-sector unions interfere. They demand more pay and benefits, and more control over the workplace, than the people’s elected representatives might choose if they were answerable only to voters.

Indeed, political war chests accumulated through dues checkoffs and agency fees give public-sector unions more influence than ordinary voters in many states and counties. At contract time, they face their political allies across a bargaining table. That table, by the way, is behind closed doors; collective bargaining is often exempt from “sunshine laws” that cover other public business.






The labor peace justification tries to make a virtue out of something Americans normally, and properly, despise: government by interest group. A variant of that argument, advanced by my colleague Harold Meyerson, is that ­public-employee unions, with their large campaign donations and political staffs, have become “the all-around linchpin of the modern Democratic Party” and the progressive causes for which it stands.

Some of us, though, don’t think dependence on unions has been healthy for the Democratic Party or for the robust public sector it espouses. Again, the case in point is the public schools, which employ almost half of all local government employees but which Democrats dare reform only at the risk of war with teachers unions.






The fundamental problem is collective bargaining. It is appropriate in the private sector, where workers bargain with private, profit-making corporations, not the taxpaying citizenry — and where market forces provide an independent check on both sides’ demands. In the public sector, however, it means higher costs, lower efficiency and, worst of all, less democracy.




posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 01:49 PM
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Most of your post is arguably true. The only problem I really have with it is this



The majority of those unions are private, building trades unions. We have just as much right to do with our money as the Koch brothers.

I think linking the building trades with the public sector unions is a bit deceiving.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 01:53 PM
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reply to post by tinner07
 


The largest one is and there are an unbelievable number of public sector unions that are below the radar when looking at those kinds of numbers.

But yes, the graphic is a clarification for the "Koch brothers are drowning politics with their money" political contribution argument.
edit on 16-4-2014 by greencmp because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 02:17 PM
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600 million from the unions is a lot. especially when you consider only about 13% of the nations workforce is represented by a union. Although for the sake of argument I will add that statistic may or may not include public sector unions. Don't really feel like checking.

And if the Koch industries total is the same time frame they are less than 1 million a year.

WTF they use all that money for anyway? tv commercials and yard signs?



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 02:51 PM
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reply to post by tinner07
 


Looks like the OP contradicted himself/herself buy using an Infographic combining Private and Public Unions, in the same Post that he/she is calling them Different, or to quote the OP's title that says these Unions are like "Apples and Oranges" =P



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 02:57 PM
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Dustofenese
reply to post by tinner07
 


Looks like the OP contradicted himself/herself buy using an Infographic combining Private and Public Unions, in the same Post that he/she is calling them Different, or to quote the OP's title that says these Unions are like "Apples and Oranges" =P


I had been pointing out that much of that union money is public sector but, I suppose I could include private unions in this political argument in a way. One of my complaints is that the money from public coffers (tax payer money) is being used to fund lobbyists for new and expanded union projects which may or, more likely, may not be in the public interest. Private unions participate in that process.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 03:06 PM
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reply to post by greencmp
 

My experience in a public sector union is that we got paid less than we would have in the private sector, but that was made up for with 'deferred compensation'...like a half decent pension plan and stable working conditions. The employer was always pretty happy with the results until the well-known and fully anticipated 'grey surge' hits retirement age. Contracts were agreed to by both parties...time to pay up!

Besides, what's with all this race-to-the-bottom crap, anyway? The working class is being conned into attacking their peers instead of the oligarchs who got them into this mess in the first place. Suckers!


edit on 16-4-2014 by JohnnyCanuck because: ..just because!



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 03:11 PM
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reply to post by greencmp
 


Your graphic is incomplete. It only deals with direct donations and does not include the dark money.

Let's look at the 2012 election.



This is the real reason the Unions are demonized by the Right.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 03:22 PM
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BritofTexas
reply to post by greencmp
 


Your graphic is incomplete. It only deals with direct donations and does not include the dark money.

Let's look at the 2012 election.



This is the real reason the Unions are demonized by the Right.


So, you are saying that there is a secret workaround that allows the Koch brothers to contribute more than would otherwise be allowed, correct?

If that is the case, what makes you think that every union and opponent of Koch Bros isn't doing the same thing?



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:35 PM
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greencmp
So, you are saying that there is a secret workaround that allows the Koch brothers to contribute more than would otherwise be allowed, correct?
If that is the case, what makes you think that every union and opponent of Koch Bros isn't doing the same thing?


Let's look at the numbers...


In 2013, the union membership rate--the percent of wage and salary workers who were members of unions--was 11.3 percent


In 2013, among full-time wage and salary workers, union members had median usual weekly earnings of $950

Bureau of Labor Statistics

David Koch has a net worth of $4.4 Billion.
Charles Koch has a net worth of $4.4 Billion.
Forbes


It would take more than the entire Unionized workforce of the U.S. to come anywhere near the amount that the Kochs contribute.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:40 PM
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I had been pointing out that much of that union money is public sector but, I suppose I could include private unions in this political argument in a way. One of my complaints is that the money from public coffers (tax payer money) is being used to fund lobbyists for new and expanded union projects which may or, more likely, may not be in the public interest. Private unions participate in that process.
reply to post by greencmp
 


I dont really see this being taxpayers money. It is the employees money at this point.

They may be paid with taxpayers money but then it is their money.

In my union I can volunteer to contribute I think its $.03 an hour to our PAC fund. I imagine its the same for teachers. It is their money, not taxpayer money.

Would you say they can't buy a foreign vehicle? or can only spend money in locally owned stores? of course not, it is their money.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 05:00 PM
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tinner07



I had been pointing out that much of that union money is public sector but, I suppose I could include private unions in this political argument in a way. One of my complaints is that the money from public coffers (tax payer money) is being used to fund lobbyists for new and expanded union projects which may or, more likely, may not be in the public interest. Private unions participate in that process.
reply to post by greencmp
 


I dont really see this being taxpayers money. It is the employees money at this point.

They may be paid with taxpayers money but then it is their money.

In my union I can volunteer to contribute I think its $.03 an hour to our PAC fund. I imagine its the same for teachers. It is their money, not taxpayer money.

Would you say they can't buy a foreign vehicle? or can only spend money in locally owned stores? of course not, it is their money.


For public sector unions, it amounts to government funded lobbying for increased public works and other government expansion.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 06:16 PM
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greencmp
For public sector unions, it amounts to government funded lobbying for increased public works and other government expansion.
That's nonsense. The money comes from employee wages, and is based upon the rate of pay. You know, one thing that irks me about this conversation as well. We hear lots about the demonic Big Labour. Well, when a contract is being negotiated...when I was on a negotiating team...we volunteers were across the table from high-priced lawyers and HR professionals. Slightly unbalanced unless the Big Boys (gender neutral) come in with their expertise. And if it was not for the strength of our numbers, we'd 'a been screwed. Same goes for grievances, which are violations of the mutually agreed-upon rules of play. I was a busy guy...and never lost a grievance.



posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 09:16 PM
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JohnnyCanuck

greencmp
For public sector unions, it amounts to government funded lobbying for increased public works and other government expansion.
That's nonsense. The money comes from employee wages, and is based upon the rate of pay. You know, one thing that irks me about this conversation as well. We hear lots about the demonic Big Labour. Well, when a contract is being negotiated...when I was on a negotiating team...we volunteers were across the table from high-priced lawyers and HR professionals. Slightly unbalanced unless the Big Boys (gender neutral) come in with their expertise. And if it was not for the strength of our numbers, we'd 'a been screwed. Same goes for grievances, which are violations of the mutually agreed-upon rules of play. I was a busy guy...and never lost a grievance.



You really don't get it do you? Public sector employee wages are our tax payer dollars.

You are a disgusted, angry, hateful and vociferous opponent of what, the american people?
edit on 16-4-2014 by greencmp because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 07:46 AM
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greencmp
You really don't get it do you? Public sector employee wages are our tax payer dollars.
What's your point? You think you're going to pay your taxes and government services are magically gonna happen? What employees do with their money is none of your affair.

You are a disgusted, angry, hateful and vociferous opponent of what, the american people?
...and you get that from where? LOL



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 07:54 AM
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JohnnyCanuck

greencmp
You really don't get it do you? Public sector employee wages are our tax payer dollars.
What's your point? You think you're going to pay your taxes and government services are magically gonna happen? What employees do with their money is none of your affair.

You are a disgusted, angry, hateful and vociferous opponent of what, the american people?
...and you get that from where? LOL


You're fired. HHH
edit on 17-4-2014 by greencmp because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 07:58 AM
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greencmp
You're fired.
Sorry, according to the collective agreement that you negotiated and signed...you can't do that. I'm grieving it...see you in arbitration.



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 08:05 AM
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JohnnyCanuck

greencmp
You're fired.
Sorry, according to the collective agreement that you negotiated and signed...you can't do that. I'm grieving it...see you in arbitration.


I forgot, you can't fire a union employee even if they cause more problems than they solve.

In fact, I think I have to hire the rest of your family since it is a public sector union.


edit on 17-4-2014 by greencmp because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 08:15 AM
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BritofTexas

greencmp
So, you are saying that there is a secret workaround that allows the Koch brothers to contribute more than would otherwise be allowed, correct?
If that is the case, what makes you think that every union and opponent of Koch Bros isn't doing the same thing?


Let's look at the numbers...


In 2013, the union membership rate--the percent of wage and salary workers who were members of unions--was 11.3 percent


In 2013, among full-time wage and salary workers, union members had median usual weekly earnings of $950

Bureau of Labor Statistics

David Koch has a net worth of $4.4 Billion.
Charles Koch has a net worth of $4.4 Billion.
Forbes


It would take more than the entire Unionized workforce of the U.S. to come anywhere near the amount that the Kochs contribute.



your numbers are off..... the 2 brothers are worth 40 billion each, not 4.4 billion....why would they want more?.....and why would anyone listen to them about anything political?....they are so far removed from having any type of knowledge of ordinary people's problems, that their advice is irrelevant, on how government should work for the general benefit of Americans



posted on Apr, 17 2014 @ 08:16 AM
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greencmp

JohnnyCanuck

greencmp
You're fired.
Sorry, according to the collective agreement that you negotiated and signed...you can't do that. I'm grieving it...see you in arbitration.


I forgot, you can't fire a union employee even if they cause more problems than they solve.

In fact, I think I have to hire the rest of your family since it is a public sector union.
Actually, it becomes a process and the union standard is 'comply now, grieve later' as insubordination is a firing offence. Even under provincial labour law, there has to be a process (my wife is in HR) if an employee's perfortmance is sub-standard. That's because employers hate to put anti-bullying language in their contracts.

Truth is, when I was first in training as a steward, I asked my instructor how far are we expected to go...shut down a workplace to save an employee who is patently bad? His response was "Hey...we're not the Teamsters".




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