First up we have a sociology professor proving that you don't have to be a trade unionist (a type of communist 75 years ago, and apparently still) to teach humanities, but it clearly helps.
Channeling Norman Thomas, six-time socialist candidate for president in the Depression era, he argues that the problem with the Big Three automakers is the UAW didn't go far enough. They should have, in his view, organized the foreign automakers plants in the U.S. too.
[T]here is nothing inherently unsustainable about employing a high-priced, unionized workforce. The crisis of Detroit's wage bill is entirely relative. Specifically, their labor costs far exceed the low-cost, nonunion American workforce at the U.S.-based, foreign-owned plants of competitors Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Subaru.By all means, let's have still higher priced cars and greater injustice in the form of higher wages for those who do less work in comparable tasks, along with arm-twisting of the employers. Let's enforce it by the descendant legislation of the Wagner Act that amplified government coercion in labor relations. Apparently it's not required to have any knowledge of economics — or ethics — to teach sociology.
If the UAW really is to blame at all, then, it is because of the union's utter failure to unionize any of the transplants. What has the UAW been doing all these years? Isn't it the responsibility of any good union to protect union employers from competitive labor disadvantages by organizing wall to wall, throughout the industry? How could it have left these transplants unorganized?
A laugh a minute.
Then we have this joke from one of the chief thugs himself, Andy Stern, head of the SEIU (Service Employees International Union). Arguing in a similar vein, Mr. Stern suggests the U.S. should be still more like Europe — as if going down that road culturally for the past 40 years hasn't caused enough damage already.
Here's a tidbit from a WSJ editorial that will tell you all you need to know about Mr. Stern's views:
The SEIU targets private equity firms, shames business leaders, and competes with other unions to build up its membership. Mr. Stern is unapologetic. "We like to say: We use the power of persuasion first. If it doesn't work, we try the persuasion of power." [emphasis added]For something more particular, feast on this (and hope you don't choke):
Universal health care, widespread unionization, stronger regulations on business, profit-sharing for employees, higher taxes — all that sounds like Western Europe. Mr. Stern considers that a worthy model. "I think Western Europe as much as we used to make fun of it has made different trade-offs which may have ended up with a little more unemployment but a lot more equality."The equality of the grave as one wag famously put it. As some other brilliant wit recently observed, with friends like this who needs friends?