One view of why unions are in decline

Dear Editor: Most Americans earn between $15 and $20 dollars an hour, while union members draw as much as five times as much. So why is trade union membership falling so swiftly? Less than 8 percent of the private sector workforce belongs to a trade union. You would think that all workers would want to get a $100,000 a year wage increase. Signing a union wage and benefit package has turned into a “kiss of death” for many employers. Ironically, it’s not the employers who refuse to pay union wages; it’s the consumers, who are unable or unwilling to pay “union” wages.

Toyota, which has 10 plants in the United States, is not unionized. Toyota buyers get their Camrys assembled for $1,500 dollars less than Ford Taurus buyers pay to get their Ford assembled. What do the Ford buyers get for that extra $1,500 dollars? Not a higher quality car. Raising the cost of foreign made products will not save the unions. They cannot compete in the domestic market, let alone the global market.

Jim Purtzer


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