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View Diary: What’s So Great About Unions, Anyway? (38 comments)

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  •  The value of unions is unquestionable IMO but... (0+ / 0-)

    .....equally apparent is the need for "a union" that unifies all workers, public and private, in a modern national employee institution that creates equitable, portable, cradle-to-grave social benefits decoupled from employers.  Worker centric rather than employer or contract centric.

    Employer benefits are antiquated and no longer reliable no matter how excellent the contracts. The corporations and workplaces have globalized, so must workers. We need a national org with universal membership that replaces negotiating with employers with government leverage for cradle-to-grave social benefits decoupled from employers. Unions have the history and capabilities to lead on this. There is no longer a logical division between blue and white collar jobs now that all workers are simply resources, fungible and temporary, like phones, and the industrial era approach to retirement and health benefits may work for the few currently unionized, but not for long. Unions used to influence improvements in the workplace for all workers whereas now the inequities are exploited to divide us. Workers need a counter force to the banks, the Chamber of Commerce, and Business Roundtable.  

    •  Call it the Industrial Workers of the World (0+ / 0-)

      One Big Union!

      Just your average every day Autistic hillbilly/biker/activist/union steward with an engineering degree.

      by Mentatmark on Tue Feb 19, 2013 at 02:12:20 PM PST

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    •  It's true that some unions are stuck in the past (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kck

      Or engaged in partnership models that often end up working against the public and/or their own members.
      That's not an argument against unions, but an argument to improve unions.
      Examples:  
      The UAW fighting against auto safety and fuel economy rules.
      The majority of the AFL unions supporting the Keystone pipeline.
      The building trades opposing single-payer because they see their own health care trusts as a recruiting tool.

      In the pioneering days of the labor movement, there was a close linkage between what was best for union members and what was best for all workers and the public good.  That linkage made it possible to build a powerful labor movement.  Now, some unions will ally themselves with the bosses' interest against the public good - which in the long run never turns out well.  And it's made it easier for the right to demonize unions.  I'm a proud union member and want all workers to have unions they can feel proud of - which means unions that take a broad view of their mission, rather than a narrow one.

      "Wouldn't you rather vote for what you want and not get it than vote for what you don't want - and get it?" Eugene Debs. "Le courage, c'est de chercher la verite et de la dire" Jean Jaures

      by Chico David RN on Tue Feb 19, 2013 at 02:28:28 PM PST

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