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View Diary: What's the Deal With Unions Anyway? (103 comments)

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  •  You ask why they're not lining up to join. (28+ / 0-)

    Because union protections have been in place for so long that new workers don't realize the union won those protections in the first place.

    Because it doesn't occur to new workers that without the union these protections would disappear.

    Because new workers don't know just how bad working conditions were before unions.

    Because there are workers who believe they can successfully demand sufficient protections/wages for themselves, individually. And to heck with anybody who can't.

    Because many workers don't realize that even the minimum benefits of non-union jobs (bathroom breaks--heck! bathrooms!, safety equipment, pay scales) don't sink to worse levels because of unions. (That's why the garment industry moved to Asia instead of staying in the right-to-work American South--because  unions in one part of the US lift boats in other areas.)  

    Because workers don't realize that even off-the-job benefits they take for granted--like Social Security, or public libraries--are still around in large part because unions help elect governments that preserve these benefits.

    Because workers don't realize that unions are a formidable lobby, working for workers' interests in Washington. And dues pay for that, at a cost of pennies a year to each unionized worker.

    Because the same selfish streak that infects employers also infects many workers. "If I can get more money/benefits, I deserve it--let the other guy get the same thing, if he can."  

    Because the plutocrats need to distract workers from the plutocrats' own villainy--and the union is the perfect distraction. After all, unions look a lot like plutocrats, because they tend to accumulate money and power. Workers easily forget that, unlike with plutocrats, union money and power belongs to everybody in the union.

    Because union leaders are human, and like all humans can be warped by power. So corruption can occur, and corruption makes bigger headlines than the everyday good the unions do.

    Because the "unions have outlived their usefulness" meme has become so much a part of common parlance that many people accept it as true.

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