Keane observations about life, politics and sports.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What Unions Do To Industries Plus Number One Reason There Should Be NO Public Sector Unions

Shamelessly stolen material (h/t Don Surber):
The U.S. Postal Service will post a deficit of $8 billion this year.

That is to cover its union promises to union workers for pensions and other post-retirement benefits.

So what did postal management do?

From the Washington Post:

The U.S. Postal Service and one of its largest labor unions have reached agreement on a new 41/2-year contract that would give raises to about 205,000 workers but force them to pay more for their health insurance.

The tentative deal with the American Postal Workers Union would provide workers with a 3 1/2 percent pay increase over the life of the contract, starting with a 1 percent raise in November 2012, the union said Monday. Postal clerks, mechanics, truck drivers and maintenance staff will vote in coming weeks on the contract, which would run through May 2015.
It is one thing for a union to destroy a private company or industry as the UAW has attempted to do with the auto makers. Individuals have an option whether or not to buy a car and who to buy one from if they decide to make that purchase. Likewise, when management of a private company negotiates a deal with a union they are risking their money (or money of the shareholders they represent). However, when public sector unions negotiate their lucrative compensation packages the other side of the equation has no choice in the matter. I can decide to not buy an overly expensive car. I can not decide to refuse to pay the taxes to fund other people's generosity. A side issue in these incestuous negotiations in staffing requirements. How are decisions made on how many policemen or fire fighters are needed in a particular municipality? Those decisions are based on recommendations of "experts" who usually just happen to be former policemen or fire fighters. Any guess on whether they will err on the side of greater efficiency or on the side of greater redundancy? You got it. Have to be able to cover multiple emergencies simultaneously. Never mind the unlikelyhood of multiple fires or the fact that neighboring communities can help if it happened. Problem is people making those recommendations have no concern for the cost impact especially the long term obligations.

Some people claim that debt is a non issue since taxes haven't gone up. Ridiculous! That makes as much sense as someone telling their spouse that their credit card debt isn't an issue since they aren't currently paying it. Financial pain deferred is financial pain magnified.

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Blogger Tom said...

Or like Paul Klugman says..we ain't broke if we can still borrow money...with economists like that who needs the Fed.

March 15, 2011 at 1:37 PM


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