Public Unions

Right-to-Work Wisconsin?

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Wisconsin may perhaps be on the road to passing right-to-work legislation. According to a recent Reason-Rupe poll of 708 Wisconsin residents, 51 percent favor a law in Wisconsin "that would no longer require workers in unionized companies to pay union dues as a condition of employment." This number is largely unchanged (52 percent) among likely voters.

Republican Gov. Scott Walker's controversial Act 10 made paying public-union dues voluntary, effectively making union membership also voluntary and public-sector employment right-to-work. Now that Walker has survived the recall election, should we expect Wisconsin's private sector to also move toward the right-to-work column in the near future?

Public-sector workers are most likely to oppose a right-to-work law in Wisconsin, with 58 percent in opposition; however, 53 percent among private sector workers approve. Others who strongly oppose are those with a post-graduate degrees (57 percent), Occupy Wall Street supporters (56 percent), Democrats (55 percent), and households with union members (53 percent).

Those who favor right-to-work legislation in Wisconsin include 68 percent of Tea Party supporters, 66 percent of Republicans, 61 percent among those over sixty-five years old and 57 percent among those aged forty-five to fifty-four, and 54 percent among those making more than $75,000 a year and 53 percent among those making less than $30,000 a year.

Some historical perspective is useful here. 

In the 1930s it was argued that federal intervention in labor markets was necessary to resolve disputes between labor and business. In 1935 Congress passed the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) or the Wagner Act, setting up the National Labor Relations Board (NRLB) as the official arbiter of labor unions. With sufficient employee support, a company's employees could petition to receive union authorization. Only one union would be permitted per business. Since businesses were required to only negotiate with the one union, they were required to collectively bargain with union representatives over pay and working conditions. It also required employees of unionized companies to pay union dues as a condition of employment. 

Twelve years later, the Taft-Hartley Act amended the NLRA, allowing states to pass right-to-work laws that prevented unions from requiring companies to fire workers who refused to join the union. Essentially, right-to-work laws made union membership voluntary and brought the choice of paying union dues back to the individual.

The following chart shows which states have right-to-work laws and those that do not.

Right-To-Work  Not Right-To-Work
AlabamaAlaska
ArizonaCalifornia
ArkansasColorado
FloridaConnecticut
GeorgiaDelaware
IdahoHawaii
IndianaIllinois
IowaKentucky
KansasMaine
LouisianaMaryland
MississippiMassachusetts
NebraskaMichigan
NevadaMinnesota
North CarolinaMissouri
North DakotaMontana
OklahomaNew Hampshire
South CarolinaNew Jersey
South DakotaNew Mexico
TennesseeNew York
TexasOhio
UtahOregon
VirginiaPennsylvania
WyomingRhode Island
 Vermont
 Washington
 West Virginia
 Wisconsin

Source: National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation

If additional states, such as Wisconsin, wish to change the relationship between labor unions and business and allow workers the choice of joining a union, legislation must be passed in that state. Given Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's ability to withstand a recall election after making public-employees effectively right-to-work, an expansion of right-to-work in the private sector may perhaps follow.

Full poll results can be found here and cross tabs here.

ORC International conducted fieldwork for the poll, May 14th-18th 2012 of both mobile and landline phones, 708 Wisconsin adults, margin of error +/- 3.7%.  Likely Wisconsin voters (609, MOE +/-4%) include registered respondents who said they are absolutely certain to vote or very likely to vote in the June 5th recall election for governor.

Emily Ekins is the director of polling for Reason Foundation where she leads the Reason-Rupe public opinion research project, launched in 2011. Follow her on Twitter @emilyekins.

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  1. Every state should voluntarily become right-to-work states.

  2. Essentially, right-to-work laws made union membership voluntary and brought the choice of paying union dues back to the individual.

    But it also takes away an employer’s freedom to have a union only workforce if they wanted to.

    Obviously the previous situation was terrible but in a free market it would be up to the employer.

    1. Yes. With RTW, the NLRA thumb is still on the scales, but at least it’s an opposable thumb.

    2. I think this goes in SLD territory. An employer should be able to set up any sort of non-fraudulent and voluntary contract with any employee or group of employees that employer and employees can agree to in Libertopia. If an employer thinks it advantageous to have an all union shop, great. If he won’t employ union members at all, great.

      1. If an employer thinks it advantageous to have an all union shop, great they’ll be out of business in a matter of months.

        Fixed

      2. If an employer thinks it advantageous to have an all union shop, great. If he won’t employ union members at all, great.

        Actually the “right” to collectively bargain should belong to every individual employee not exclusively to the business.

        1. No. Because it isn’t a right. Its a desire to voluntarily associate for perceived benefit that no other person should be forced to accept. Persons desiring such from an employer are welcome to use non-violent tools such as boycotts to change the employers calculus of benefit.

    3. Obviously the previous situation was terrible but in a free market it would be up to the employer.

      True enough.

      Of course, in a free market, the employer wouldn’t do business with a union at all, except voluntarily. Just because the company has been coerced into dealing with the union doesn’t mean the employees have to be join it to keep their jobs.

      Here’s my offer:

      Right to work laws would not apply to workplaces where the union has been decertified, and the employer has asked them to stay on anyway.

    4. Does it? Can’t the employer fire the employee if they are really that desperate to run a union shop and the employee won’t join?

  3. Pretty sad for the unions when barely over half of households of union members oppose RTW.

  4. In what way is RTW compatible with libertarianism?

      1. If I’m gonna die for a word, my word is POONTANG

    1. Well, laws require employers to work with unions. It’s basically a law to ease the pain of another law. Both are shitty laws and should be done away with, but the 2nd law does sort of release a little pressure.

    2. In what way is RTW not compatible with libertarianism?

      The relevant issue is the state forcing someone to join a union as a condition of employment.

    3. In the way that in counteracts the special privileges granted to Unions in other shitty laws.

  5. Does anyone know what the unemployment rate is among RTW states vs. Non-RTW states?

    1. Yes

    2. If my calculations are correct, then the average unemployment rates (based on U-6 numbers)are:
      RTW = 13.9%
      Non-RTW = 15.0%

      But the averages don’t really tell you that much, because there are large states with high unemployment in each category (FL 17.3%, CA 20.8%). The state with the highest unemployment (NV 22.3%) is RTW. Additionally, only six states have an unemployment rate below 11%, and they are all RTW states.

  6. Forcing people to join an association against their wills, and pay for the privilege shouldn’t be legal anywhere.

    Among other things, it is a direct violation of Article 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (which the liberals claim to love so much).

    1. Who is doing the forcing? AFAIK, it’s a condition of employment.

      1. Who is doing the forcing?

        Why, the government, of course. Its the one forcing the union into the workplace in the first place. The union, of course, uses the leverage that it gets from being forced into the workforce against the owner’s wishes to “negotiate” a closed shop contract.

        Now, if you think any contract that you enter into after the government tells you to enter into the contract is “voluntary”, then you have a funny understanding of the word.

        1. We know all this, RC, but that does not mean that it is therefore proper to tell an employer who voluntarily (in the true sense of the term) chooses a closed shop that he cannot have one, which is what RtW does.

          1. ah yes, the imaginary employer. what benefit of a closed shop is he foreclosed from?

            1. A closed shop means that the employees must be members of the union. RtW makes closed shop illegal.

              1. you didn’t answer the question. a closed shop is not a benefit in itself. what is the employer unable to do besides compel union membership?

                1. you didn’t answer the question. a closed shop is not a benefit in itself.

                  Who says it isn’t?

                  1. explain it then

                    1. Having a ready, stable labor supply is one benefit. Having one uniform benefits plan to administer is another. Protecting employees from managers who do not have the best interests of the company in mind (for example: quid pro quo sexual harassment)

                      There are a number of reasons why an employer might favor a counterbalancing bureaucracy and organization. An additional one might be that absent employee-wide negotiated agreements, there might be undiscovered inefficiencies or other monies left “on the table” thanks to a lack of collaborative effort.

                    2. unions control labor supply? an employer can’t offer uniform benefits and pay in a right to work state? he’s not free to overpay and impose productivity killing work rules on himself? unions prevent sexual harrassment?

                      sounds like the only thing he can’t do is compel union membership and collect dues on behalf of the union. if such an employer actually existed.

                    3. It’s interesting to me that you cannot see how it is possible that one group of self-interested individuals working for a firm (a union) can benefit the firm, but apparently you can see that another group (management) somehow does.

                      Is it not possible for unions to contribute to the bottom line? A happier workforce is a more productive one, and it is more than possible that a union can curb excesses of the firm that more the production frontier outward. That’s Economics of the Firm 200. Sorry.

                    4. The employer can do anything in a RTW state that he can do in a union state except compel membership and collect a vig for the union. Doesn’t seem like as much of an imposition on the employers rights in a RTW state as forced unionism is on the individual in a union state. You like state force. A lot of people do. Besides, there’s no such employer.

                    5. Doesn’t seem like as much of an imposition on the employers rights in a RTW state as forced unionism is on the individual in a union state. You like state force.

                      You really have no idea what Right to Work means, do you?

                      Here’s the deal: Right to Work is a law that prohibits employers, again, by law, from having what is called a “closed shop”. Briefly, that means that joining a union cannot be a condition of employment.

                      You can have a union forced on you in a Right to Work state. It kills me that people don’t know this. You can have a union forced on you in a Right to Work STATE because the NLRA is a FEDERAL act that controls.

                      The fact that you said “[Randian] likes state force” made me actively laugh. What a joke.

                    6. The employer can do anything in a RTW state that he can do in a union state except compel membership and collect a vig for the union.

                      quoting myself. and from that you get that I don’t think unions are allowed in RTW states.

                      as far you wanting compulsion, own it.

                    7. as far you wanting compulsion, own it.

                      Really? What’s your proof?

                      You have none.

        2. Its the one forcing the union into the workplace in the first place.

          How?

          And regardless, wouldn’t that mean RTW is fixing a wrong with another wrong? Isn’t the appropriate legislative tact, at least from a libertarian perspective, is to remove the “forcing” you claim exists?

          I just have a hard time looking at RTW as anything other than more market distorting legislation, this time from an anti-union perspective.

          1. How?

            Because once the union is certified, the employer is required to engage with it to settle the dispute. He cannot just fire everybody associated with the union. He cannot prohibit labor organizational activities.

            I agree with the “two wrongs don’t make a right” part of your post, btw.

            1. Also, once a labor union is certified it “owns” that workplace essentially forever. Competitive unions are precluded by law and it is devilishly hard to de certify unions no matter how much the subsequent workers hate them.

          2. How?

            The NLRA and the NLRB?

            wouldn’t that mean RTW is fixing a wrong with another wrong?

            How do you figure? From where I sit, its more in the nature of damage control. Anyone who wants to is still free to join the union, after all. No employee’s right to contract or associate is limited, at all, but RTW laws.

            The only limit imposed by RTW laws is on the contract between the employer and the union. But that contract isn’t really voluntary in the first place.

            1. The only limit imposed by RTW laws is on the contract between the employer and the union. But that contract isn’t really voluntary in the first place.

              Except when it is, and RtW cannot tell the difference.

              1. That’s an extremely rare situation. There may be cases where RTW is really preventing companies from freely associating with unions, but the alternative is to prevent employers from freely associating with employees in many more cases.

      2. In non-RTW states, you’re forced to join the union and pay dues upon being hired. It’s a condition of your employment, whether you want to be in the union or not.

        1. That isn’t force – that’s an employment condition, just like a drug test or an educational/experience requirement.

          1. That isn’t force – that’s an employment condition, just like a drug test or an educational/experience requirement.

            It is force, when the state says your business can’t be open unless your workers are unionized.

            Seriously, move to New York for a year. You’ll understand.

            1. It is force, when the state says your business can’t be open unless your workers are unionized.

              You’re moving the goal posts. You said that one is “forced” to join a union. I pointed out that it is an employment condition, other kinds of which libertarians support, even in contravention of federal law, in other freedom of association contexts.

              1. You’re moving the goal posts. You said that one is “forced” to join a union.

                Somehow clarifying that the State is mandating unionization is “moving the goalposts?” Fuck off, retard, or come up with a valid response.

                1. See, these are two different arguments. Where the State mandates unionization, I am opposed. What you said initially was this:

                  In non-RTW states, you’re forced to join the union and pay dues upon being hired. It’s a condition of your employment, whether you want to be in the union or not.

                  And I told you that wasn’t force, which is still correct. If the State forces you to unionize, that is a different thing altogether.

                  1. In non-RTW states, you’re forced to join the union and pay dues upon being hired. It’s a condition of your employment, whether you want to be in the union or not.

                    No, you’re a moron. THE STATE FORCES THE BUSINESS TO HAVE ALL UNION EMPLOYEES YOU FUCKING RETARD. Which means, that yes, you are forced to be in a union if you want to be employed. Get this through your dumb fucking skull.

                    1. No, you’re a moron. THE STATE FORCES THE BUSINESS TO HAVE ALL UNION EMPLOYEES YOU FUCKING RETARD.

                      I don’t think you understand what “non-RTW state” means.

                      A non-RTW state is one that permits the existence of closed-shop firms. It is not one that MANDATES closed-shop firms.

                    2. A non-RTW state is one that permits the existence of closed-shop firms. It is not one that MANDATES closed-shop firms.

                      And you don’t know the difference between RTW and non-RTW. Most non-RTW states (ala New York) MANDATE closed shop firms.

                    3. And you don’t know the difference between RTW and non-RTW. Most non-RTW states (ala New York) MANDATE closed shop firms.

                      Really? Would you please find the section of the NY Code that says that all employers must be closed-shop?

                    4. Randian seems to be really good at playing dumb. Taft-Hartley has outlawed the closed shop since 1947. The union shop is also illegal unless certain hoops are jumped through first (you can’t be forced to join a union, but you can be forced to pay union dues where a collective bargaining agreement exists. Thanks UPS for teaching me about that).

                      Randian, your entire argument is a non-starter.

                    5. Wait, AC, what was my argument again? Because your point here does not seem to be addressing it.

                      You are right that talking about “closed shops” is sloppy work here, but that was meant as a proxy for “those labor contexts that still require a ‘fair share fee'”. I like to think most knew that, but maybe not.

                    6. Wait, AC, what was my argument again?

                      We know all this, RC, but that does not mean that it is therefore proper to tell an employer who voluntarily (in the true sense of the term) chooses a closed shop that he cannot have one, which is what RtW does.

                      Ah yes, the employer must have the “right” to form labor security agreements so that the labor cartel may use the power of the employer to compel money and obedience from their brothers-in-labor. Why can’t the ignorant proles understand that labor cartels are an unalloyed good and that they should willingly part with their money in thanks for the collective bargaining agreements the labor bosses fight so hard for?

                      You are right that talking about “closed shops” is sloppy work here, but that was meant as a proxy for “those labor contexts that still require a ‘fair share fee'”.

                      Let’s call them what they are: dues. Dues collected by the employer on the behalf of the labor cartel. But, of course, all of the workers should plainly see the good that labor cartels do them and willingly give the union their money without having it extracted from their paycheck. Right?

              2. That isn’t force – that’s an employment condition, just like a drug test or an educational/experience requirement.

                Right.

                And taxes aren’t force, they are condition of employment.

                Hell, drug laws aren’t force, they are condition of residency.

                1. Right.

                  And taxes aren’t force, they are condition of employment.

                  Hell, drug laws aren’t force, they are condition of residency.

                  Those are enforced with force or the threat of force. If you fail to comply, men with guns will come to your house and eventually jail and/or kill you.

                  That is not true with joining a union as a condition of employment. If you don’t join, you don’t get the job.

                  1. Those are enforced with force or the threat of force. If you fail to comply, men with guns will come to your house and eventually jail and/or kill you.

                    That is not true with joining a union as a condition of employment. If you don’t join, you don’t get the job.

                    The employment laws in non-RTW states are enforced using force or threat of force, at least from an employer’s perspective. Again, if his union staff walks out during a contract negotiation, the business owner is not free to fire them all and start hiring non-union employees. He is forced to negotiate with them, with the state doing the forcing by either legislative action and/or regulation. His business can be forced to close or he can have financial penalties leveled against him if he tries to hire new people free from the union that he no longer wishes to associate with. If that’s not force, I sure don’t know what is force.

                    1. First of all, that is a different argument entirely from what I said about pre-conditions of employment.

                      Second of all, there is no employer in the country who can violate the NLRA. You cannot do mass firings in a Right to Work state either.

                    2. You cannot do mass firings in a Right to Work state either.

                      At Will Employment says you can terminate your entire staff “without cause” any time you want. It hasn’t bbeen tested, because employers tend to fire “with cause,” which is what usually ends up being questioned by the government.

                      So Protip: always terminate employees without cause if you are in an “At Will” state.

              3. I pointed out that it is an employment condition, other kinds of which libertarians support, even in contravention of federal law, in other freedom of association contexts.

                But in the current sense, it is not a condition imposed by the employer. Rather, it is a condition imposed by legislative act and regulation.

                Watch an employer in a non-RTW state try to fire all of his union employees and start hiring from scratch. Where is the employer’s right to free association? Where does the freedom lie for employers that would like to work for him after he ejects the union employees? (Hint: it doesn’t exist.)

                1. Watch an employer in a non-RTW state try to fire all of his union employees and start hiring from scratch.

                  You couldn’t do this in an RtW state, either. The NLRA is still operative.

                  1. You sure could if the union contract had expired.

                    1. RtW has absolutely no impact on the obligations of a firm to negotiate during pending expiration of the contract. As I said, the NLRA is still operative in RtW states.

                    2. The union is in a much weaker bargaining position under RTW because many of the workers are likely to be non-union.

      3. Yes. Do this, or lose your job and career = force.

        Particularly when “this” has nothing to do with your actual job responsibilities.

        1. Yes. Do this, or lose your job and career = force.

          Particularly when “this” has nothing to do with your actual job responsibilities.

          So you want to reach into, with judicial enforcement, I suppose, particular areas of freedom of association to determine whether that association is “valid” or “rationally related” to the job.

        2. I wouldn’t go that far. That opens us up to the whole crazy quilt of leftist labor and anti-discrimination laws.

      4. It’s a condition of employment by Federal law, NOT by a voluntary or contractual agreement between an employer and a union. There’s an obvious distinction. You’re either really stupid or a very inept troll.

        1. It’s a condition of employment by Federal law, NOT by a voluntary or contractual agreement between an employer and a union.

          Not in all cases. The problem is the RtW does not distinguish (and cannot, AFAICT) those labor contracts which were procured entirely voluntarily and which came about as a result of being forced to negotiate.

          1. The problem is the RtW does not distinguish (and cannot, AFAICT) those labor contracts which were procured entirely voluntarily and which came about as a result of being forced to negotiate.

            I’m pretty sure “labor contracts which were procured entirely voluntarily” is a null set, or nearly so.

            Which is why I would give an exception for such contracts. However, opposing RTW because it doesn’t have such an exception is letting the perfect be the enemy of the good.

            1. However, opposing RTW because it doesn’t have such an exception is letting the perfect be the enemy of the good.

              THIS. RTW legislation is flawed, yes, but is still preferable to no legislation at all (in this case). I would much more prefer that RTW laws have your “voluntary contract” exception, but someone would need to propose it and get it accepted first.

              The best solution, of course, would be to repeal the NLRA, or get the offending sections of the law nullified through federal lawsuits, but I don’t find either of those outcomes to be very likely.

          2. So you side with the freedom more likely to be desired, which is RtW. The situation where everyone has free association isn’t on the menu.

    2. Forcing people to join an association against their wills, and pay for the privilege shouldn’t be legal anywhere.

      Did you know that some companies make you buy your own uniforms? There oughta be a law about that too!

      1. Shut up, Tulpa

        1. He said, as he admits that this issue makes his principles go out the window.

          1. Sometimes principles come in conflict with each other. You may have principles against killing people but that does not preclude killing someone in self-defense.

            Oh, I’m sure you will now modify the principle in question to say “don’t kill people except in self-defense” but that’s a jury-rig. Then you have to deal with killing people in war or shaking a drowning person holding onto your leg off because he’s dragging you down after your ship sinks.

        2. I’m not sure, but I think I’ve been insulted in absentia.

          Oops, sorry for the legal term, Randian. I know I’m not part of your high priesthood and will shortly be struck by lightning from Zeus Jurisconsultus.

  7. Public-sector workers are most likely to oppose a right-to-work law in Wisconsin, with 58 percent in opposition;

    Which is really weied, since big majorities quit paying their dues as soon as they got a chance.

    1. Oh, noes – liberty for me, but not for theeeee!

    2. It’s not weird at all, RC Dean. Once the citizens of Wisconsin realize the pubsec is bloated and needs to be culled of half the state employees, those people will have to land somewhere. And since they typically have the work ethic of a three-toed sloth, the typical state worker wants to make sure there is a union there to protect their laziness when they enter the private sector.

      Pretty simple, really.

  8. Yeah, we can argue freedom of association and all that.

    I’m straight up racist when it comes to unions – anything bad happens to them, I’m for it. A career of dealing with the useless, duplicitous, lecherous, lying, thieving, scare-mongering, asset-destroying, productivity-killing, incompetence-breeding cocksuckers is just fine by me.

    I know that’s not very liberaltarian, and accept the error of my views.

    Fuck ’em anyway, sideways, with Karl Marx’, Walter Reuthers’ and Samuel Gompers’ necrotic, rotted dicks. Fucking pricks.

    1. I know that’s not very liberaltarian, and accept the error of my views.

      Considering unions today only get shit because the Government gives them power to get shit, your view is very libertarian.

      Take the authority of the State away from unions and see what happens.

      1. The pure concept of a Union is not anti-liberty. And it is a perfectly rational feature of a functioning capitalist economy.

        It is only the legislative favoritism which Unions have procured over the years which is contrary to libertarian principles.

        But I cannot agree to counteracting legislative favoritism with more legislative favoritism. RTW solves the problem entirely backwards.

      2. I worked for a company in a RTW state with union employees. After a very ill-advised failed strike, the union members decided to recoup their lost wages by not paying dues.

        It was fun to watch.

    2. Yeah, we can argue freedom of association and all that.

  9. Randian, I think you have to take into account that virtually no workplace in the US currently possesses a union that was set up without the various anti-employer interventions of the NLRB in place.

    It is theoretically possible for a union to secure a closed shop on the basis of purely voluntary bargaining. That’s absolutely true. We just don’t currently possess any workplaces where that’s the case.

    I agree with you that it’s a bad law, because it’s using an injustice to try to cure the impact of a different injustice. But I think you shouldn’t be surprised by the responses you’re getting here.

    1. Unfortunately, I am not all that surprised.

      1. Just so we’re clear:

        RTW laws don’t affect an employee’s freedom of association at all.

        The only restrict a closed shop provision from being in a union contract. A contract which, as things currently stand, is itself a violation of freedom of association.

        Do you object to RTW laws because of their impact on NLRB-imposed contracts, or because of their impact on purely voluntary union contracts (if any can be found), or both?

        1. A contract which, as things currently stand, is itself a violation of freedom of association.

          That is begging the question.

          I oppose RtW because two wrongs don’t make a right. The end.

          1. This is the part of the show where RC Dean (re-?) learns how annoying it is to attempt to argue with an objectivist.

            Randian, isn’t Objectivism supposed to be entirely based on the law of identity? I don’t think you can claim that “two wrongs don’t make a right” actually ends the argument if you’re consistent with your ideology.

          2. so you are against taxation too, right?

        2. Frankly, RC, you and Fluffy have come closest to understanding the actual libertarian position on this issue, but I think you’re trying to bootstrap a lack of voluntariness to union contracts to justify these laws, and I think that’s a mistake. You’re basically asking us to read minds to determine if the employer “actually” likes their union. The answer is that we have no idea, but more legislation is not the answer.

  10. Even after reading all of this, I still can’t figure out how anyone can oppose RtW, unless your happen to be a union boss. How is requiring union dues as a condition of employment, more free?

    1. If the state is requiring the payment of union dues it is not. If the state has no law on the mater and employers can voluntarily agree to such condition, it is.

      On the other hand, it is true that talking about freedom of contract in the context of current labor law in the USA, whether in RTW states or non-, is pretty much a pointless exercise.

  11. Again, if his union staff walks out during a contract negotiation, the business owner is not free to fire them all and start hiring non-union employees. He is forced to negotiate with them, with the state doing the forcing by either legislative action and/or regulation. His business can be forced to close or he can have financial penalties leveled against him if he tries to hire new people free from the union that he no longer wishes to associate with. If that’s not force, I sure don’t know what is force.

    All of that is true in RTW states as well. Once the federal NLRA is invoked by a majority vote for unionization employers are pretty much stuck with a union no matter which environment (RTW ot Non-) they exist in.

    The only differencr ist that in a non-RTW state companies cannot enter into closed shop agreements. That to me is interference in the right to contract; on the other hand comments regarding the uneven playing field created by the NLRA are likewise valid.

    1. The union that they’ll have to deal with is much weaker under a RTW regime. Also closed shop being off the table limits how hard-assed the union can get in negotiations.

      1. this is all true but it misses the point that RTW states laws interfere with the right of contract.

        Now, to be sure, that interference is intended to counteract the huge legal advantage unions are granted by the NLRA, but that just means that another bad law has had to be created to compenstate for the existence of an original bad law.

        1. Agreed, but sometimes that has to be done. This isn’t the Church of Ayn, this is the real world we’re talking about.

          1. Yes, but there is nothing wrong with going to the root of things and discussing fundamentals either.

            After all, the Post Office will never be privatized, Social Security, Medicare and the Internal Revenue Code will never ever get anything but “reform” on the margins and “free”, compulsary government schools are going to continue to be a fact of life for a very long long time.

            We have discussions about the philosophical and political underpinnings of those things here at H’n’R on a regular basis.

            This then raises the question; why should Right to Work laws be exempt from analysis and discussion?

  12. Unfortunately, all labor law in the US (and pretty much everywhere) is founded on the assumption of a right of workers to bargain, which translates into an obligation of employers to “bargain”.

    I, for one, believe this assumption to be unfounded.

    1. I especially reject the notion that some employees of the state have a “right” to “bargain” with other employees of the state over the right to how much they can plunder from the treasury.

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