The End of the Unions?


Historically, unions have played an important role in American politics. In past decades, unions have been the single most powerful influencer of government at all levels, even surpassing the influence of industry and the people.

Our American system, however, has checks and balances that eliminate the power of even majorities imposing their unjust will on the minority. In this case, the unions were an unforeseen power that bled the treasuries across the country dry in order to perpetuate their fraud on the public.

Today, the unions are being eliminated as a political power. No longer will states stand idly by while unions transfer tax dollars to politician’s pocketbooks. We can see this because nothing the unions in Wisconsin can do can stop the republican legislature and governor. Everything they try simply reduces their influence and perception in the eyes of the public. I believe, here at home, a candidate could see a boost in their poll numbers if they simply declare solidarity with the people of Wisconsin, their elected government, and opposition to all public employee unions.

What is it that lead to the demise of the unions? Simply put, representative democracy.

Our Founding Fathers understood that no system of government is perfect. All are subject to corruption, so famously summed up as “power corrupts”.

Governments exist to protect the rights of the people. Even if we demolished our government, new governments would spring up in their place. No matter where you go in the world, the vast majority of people are always willing to give up a few of their rights to secure themselves. We see it in families, companies, tribes, cities, states, and entire nations. The pattern can never be broken, because 2 people, working together, are always more powerful than 2 people working independently.

Our Founding Fathers did an unprecedented survey of world governments. From their unique position in history, they could accurately weight almost every form of government imaginable. Rather than choose only one form, they combined the best parts of each, and set the worst parts of each against each other. Our modern government is actually a hodge-podge of democracy, republicanism, dictatorship, thoecracy, feudalism, and every other form of government imaginable. To point out a few features, the people retain the power to overthrow government entirely (recognized in the Declaration of Independence); the people also have the power to overthrow the people within government, namely the house of representatives (democracy). The states and the people elect the members of the senate and the president, and laws are changed only according to their consent (republicanism), while the president retains all but absolute control over the execution of the law (dictatorship). At the same time, we have a judiciary that judges are law based on their unique interpretation of the law—not unlike a priest who declares to the people what the will of God is. Within American society, we belong to families, churches, societies, and companies. Each of these has a variety of forms of government, one more suited than the other. We are fine working under the tyranny of our CEO, but oftentimes prefer a more democratic approach to our congregations and societies. Of course, we try to balance one form of government against each other as best we can in our lives, just as the Founding Fathers did with our governments.

What set the unions apart was their unique ability to combine together to exploit weaknesses in our democratic and republic form of government. Just as our Founding Fathers expected, when a big enough group conspires together, our government will fall under their power.

However, just as the Founding Fathers anticipated, over time the party in power would alienate more and more members of society with their abuses of that power. We see that today the union has fallen to an all-time low in popularity because they have clearly been sucking our pocketbooks dry, and insist on extracting even more cash from the people to sustain their special interests.

And just like the Founding Fathers anticipated, a bloodless revolution was made possible when those opposed to the ruling party found enough compatriots to drive them out of office.

So here we are today, with the unions rapidly diminishing in power due to their own abuses of that power.

And tomorrow, we’ll see another group rise in power only to abuse that power, only to alienate enough people that they too will fall from power.

Those groups who can maintain power are those groups who truly protect the rights of the people as a whole. If the unions had not insisted on extracting ever more extravagant benefits for their people, but instead searched for and destroyed elements of our society that plagued the people by abusing their rights, as they originally insisted they would, we would all be happily ruled by the unions.

And that, my friends, is why America is great, and why America will always be great.


5 Responses to “The End of the Unions?”

  1. Dr. Kwame M. Brown Says:

    Mr. Gardner.

    EXTREMELY well written post! Here, I agree – unions got way too far away from their original purpose.

    But it is still a fact that teachers are paid too little (by comparison with other educated, necessary workers in the United States) – and SOMEONE must do something about it.

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      I teachers are underpaid, then they need to do what every other profession who is underpaid does: quit and do something else.

      The only reason teachers are paid what they are paid is because they are willing to work for what they are paid.

  2. Dr. Kwame M. Brown Says:

    That is not a solution. They care too much about the kids to quit. And we need them to be sure that children are educated.

    You can’t just “quit” on something so necessary to the very fabric of a society.

    Just having parents do it – not a viable option, because many aren’t educated themselves – and, by the way, they are at work!

    Complex problems do not often have simple solutions.

    WE as a SOCIETY need to DECIDE to pay teachers what they are worth. And we have to make that decision together. They shouldn’t HAVE to be forced into quitting to get what they are worth. It should be recognized as a moral imperative.

    But, alas, it seems we only care about paying money for money. There are things more important than money. And social / moral imperative do not and cannot simply “follow the rules of economics”.

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      I don’t see why it’s not a solution to let market forces determine teacher’s pay. I’d like to earn a lot more money myself, and I wish everyone had all the money in the world, but simply wishing won’t make things happen.

      If we pay teachers more than they are willing to work for, then we will always have more teachers than we need. If we pay them less than what they are willing to work for, then we won’t have enough.

      If teaching is all about charity, then why should we pay teachers at all? We don’t pay people who feed the homeless or help people find jobs or clean up their neighbor’s yard.

  3. Dr. Kwame M. Brown Says:

    I never used the word charity. But….let me get this straight. If you have a job you care about and is valuable for the betterment of society, it has to automatically be charity? I can’t make good money from something that has benefit to society?

    If this is true – then what should we make money FROM?

    And I am not talking about teachers earning more money in the absolute, ad infinitum sense. I am talking about teachers making more money RELATIVE to their COMPARATIVE actual value to society – just like any human being should expect to.

    The problem arises when we talk about funding that. A couple of solutions:

    1) More efficiently spending money to shift expenditures toward the most important factor in the education equation – the quality of teaching professional and their preparation.

    2) Appropriating more of the corporate tax dollar to education., or adding an educational surtax to large corporations. It wouldn’t really take quite as much as people think. If they can contribute MILLIONS to bowl games that people see once a year, why not contribute to schools. They would certainly gain “points” in the community for that. What do they get in return? Better employees later on – which will provide even more productivity and resultant profit.

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