The problem for unions isn’t that Democrats are weak allies, but that Labor’s goals have become so radical as to split the only party that will countenance them. In decades past, unions fought for reasonable access to health insurance, workplace safety, and job security, an agenda that could win broad support from both parties. Over the last twenty years, the unions have become much more interested in hard-Left policies such as universal health care, and in staking out ridiculous demands on the labor-management relationship, attempting to win through government force what it could never gain through any reasonable negotiation.
Becker makes a good poster child for the shift in unions. Becker has argued for forced union representation, asserting that workers cannot legitimately choose not to be represented by a union but only should be allowed to choose which union that will take their dues. That’s not a mainstream view in America, or anywhere else. Their rabid support for Becker to get confirmed to the NRLB demonstrates the radicalization of a a movement based initially on pragmatism, and the curdling of its core mission to protect workers into a mission to enslave them. After all, forcing workers to pay tribute to a set of leaders whom they never agreed to appoint as their representatives as a condition of continuing to work doesn’t sound a lot different in principle from the days of company scrip in the West Virginia coal mines a century ago.
Card Check is another example. The unions propose to steal the right to hold a secret ballot — a core value in American electoral processes — and impose unionization by force through a card-signing process they control. That isn’t consonant with mainstream American values. But it does show the desperation of unions that have failed to remain relevant, losing membership thanks to both the success in mainstreaming workplace protections into law over the last 70 years and to the radical, hard-Left agenda the movement now embraces.
Maybe the unions should sit out a few electoral cycles and start reflecting on their increasing dislocation from American values.
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