Union Busting or Fighting for Survival?

“For the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and people should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts. But you have turned aside from the way. You have caused many to stumble by your instruction. You have corrupted the covenant of Levi, says the LORD of hosts, and so I make you despised and abased before all the people, inasmuch as you do not keep my ways but show partiality in your instruction.” – Malachi 2:7-9

A few years back I bought a house near Wilmington, NC. I remember dealing with a local realtor who acted as our “buyer’s agent.” She was very forthcoming in stating that the real-estate business was rigged against the buyer. You see, the selling agent only gets paid if the house sells – and gets paid a percentage of the sale price, so they naturally want a higher sale price. On the flip side though, the buyer’s agent also only gets paid if a house sells – and gets paid a percentage of the sale price, so they naturally want a higher sale price. You see the conflict. Both agents involved, and the current property owner want a fast sale for a high price. The buyer is outnumbered.

I feel the same is true of the current public sector union fights in state legislatures across a number of these United States. Who is involved in contract negotiations, and what are their motivations? The unions clearly want more money for less work. In some way that is what they’re supposed to want – a better deal for their members. The state negotiators, on the other hand, want an easy time in the re-election fight. Neither of these is concerned about the general public who is ostensibly buying education services for the state’s children. Given the propensity for politicians to seek highly motivated backers that they’ll need in an election, it is little surprise that the interests of the citizens have been left aside for years.

But then, we also have elections. And, as they say, elections have consequences. A large enough percentage of the general public has declared that they’ve had enough. They intend to fix the broken system in most crude and blunt way possible – strip public unions of their collective bargaining rights.

I support the move, but this isn’t my preferred solution. I actually support full privatization of public schools with vouchers for payment to the school of parental preference. Good schools with thrive based on hiring good teachers, no doubt paying them plenty of money (likely more than they currently make). Bad teachers will struggle to find jobs, especially jobs that pay them to do substandard work. Children will receive an education and the people will get what they pay for. It really is just that easy – and it really is opposed with great vitriol by the unions.

Ultimately, the public union issue will be solved. We will either strip away the massive overpayment of benefits or we will become utterly socialist. The status quo cannot hold, the system is in near-full collapse.

The mantra from pro-union groups is that this is all “union busting” – I say it is fighting for survival. The citizens have been held hostage long enough. It is high time somebody defended us in these negotiations. Furthermore, many teachers have been held hostage long enough by forced union membership. It is time they had their rights restored.

Freedom loving people of the world are with you, governor Walker. Don’t blink now, or we’ll be paying the price for decades to come.

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