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Fearless Philosophy For Free Minds: Benedict Arnold Outsourcing or Reasonable Business Practices? Part III of III:Unions and Outsourcing

Monday, May 29, 2006

Benedict Arnold Outsourcing or Reasonable Business Practices? Part III of III:Unions and Outsourcing

Unions see American businesses as the enemy, therefore in their eyes, anything good for business is bad for the union worker. Turn on the news just about any day of the year and you will find people protesting ‘unfair practices’ as if these workers had no other choice but to work for another company or in another industry. Unions by their nature are anti-capitalistic: competition is bad.

What many union workers fail to realize is that competition is their best hope of achieving a ‘fair wage.’ The union worker would be better off if he insisted on being judged as an individual based on his skills and his contribution to the company rather than be part of a collective group which demands benefits and higher wages based on a class of worker without regard to individual efforts. While there may be strength in numbers, as the numbers grow, the interests of a single individual are overlooked in favor of ‘the majority’ of the members.

As I had written in part I and part II about the obstacles American businesses face with excessive government regulation and oppressive taxation, the same holds true with unions. Unions are the cause behind much of the government regulation and oppressive taxation because unions are very powerful lobbies in Washington. Many foreign competitors to the U.S. do not have to contend with unions. Unions also make it difficult for businesses to compete because unions do not care about the bottom line of a business.

Union workers must be paid a certain amount regardless of the actual value of the work to the business. Contracts force businesses to pay for expenses they would not otherwise have to pay. On a construction site, if something is outside a workers job description, he is prohibited from doing that task. I was once on a jobsite where the building under construction had two elevators: the union elevator and the non-union elevator. From what I understand, taking the wrong elevator was a big no-no. But this is not even the stupidest regulations unions write into their contracts. Think about such a non-task as flipping a light switch: a drywall worker cannot turn the lights on or off because that is the electrician’s job! Is it any wonder why a company might want to locate its operations outside of the U.S., to escape this union nonsense?
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