Thursday, August 30, 2012

From Open Market.Org

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by Trey Kovacs on August 29, 2012 · 1 comment
Public support and perception of labor unions is dwindling significantly. Even Hollywood is throwing them under the bus with the new film, Won’t Back Down.
After reading The Heritage Foundation study Unelected Unions: Why Workers Should Be Allowed to Choose Their Representatives,” by James Sherk, Senior Policy Analyst in Labor Economics, it is not hard to see why.
The report stresses that contemporary unionization strips workers from their basic freedom to choose regarding negotiating working conditions, pay, and benefits. Employees must accept the union’s one-size-fits-all contract or be ostracized. The law heavily favors the union, once it is entrenched.  After a company and employees are unionized, it is an expensive and arduous endeavor for employees to get rid of representation. In addition, it is impossible for workers disgruntled with their labor organization to seek any other representation.
First, the study points out labor organizations’ primary objective is to increase dues paying members. This institutional motivation conflicts with the interests of the workers who are targeted by a union organizing campaign. Sherk explains:…
by Ivan Osorio on August 29, 2012
California Governor Jerry Brown (D) yesterday announced a pension reform agreement, which if approved by the legislature, likely will help narrow the Golden State’s huge public pension gap. Brown’s proposed reforms take several steps in the right direction, but they do not address the fundamental problem that could lead to renewed pension shortfalls in the future: the structure of defined benefit pensions.
Defined benefit pensions operate on a pay-as-you-go basis. Under such a system, a defined benefit pension plan’s liabilities can continue to grow regardless of its ability to pay. Thus, an increase in benefits when times seem flush can lead to significant shortfalls in later years, when the boom times end. That is exactly what happened in California under former Governor Gray Davis (who was recalled by voters in 2003).
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