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Those union wreckers

Daily Mail

Quoting another blogger’s post in full is probably cheating, but I liked this so much I couldn’t resist (and the illustration is all my own work). Tom, as ever, is spot on:

“Imagine if the economic crisis had been caused by trade unions, by constantly pushing for higher wages and using industrial action in support of short-term objectives, regardless of the long-term consequences. Imagine if at every stage in the run-up to the crisis when government or regulators or the public had tried to curb their behaviour, or urged restraint, they had simply responded with threats to withdraw their labour (in the traditional sense, not by relocating overseas…). Imagine if that behaviour had left the country saddled with debt that would take years to pay back, with related cuts in public services.

“Do we really believe legal curbs on their behaviour wouldn’t be introduced? Do we have any doubt that legislation would be enacted to hamper their ability to do such damage again in future? Do we seriously think society would be satisfied with voluntary codes of conduct which they could choose to comply with, or explain why not?”

Posted by Other TPA at 09:09pm on 21 July 2009
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Sadly your question is not rhetorical. Evidence for the damage done to workers’ prosperity is all around us. No shipyards, no heavy manufacturing, no iron, coal and steel, industrial scale printing lost to overseas companies, etc. Every large scale unionised industry and business in the UK has gone.

To make the case that trade unionism has been a force for the advancement of workers’ interests is impossible.

Even a simple calculation based on value of wages lost during a strike against value of wage increase gained shows that unionism is a bad thing.

Or look at the 600 year historical record for growth in earnings; massive increases prior to trade unionism and then divergence as non-unionised industries moved ahead in average pay rates.

As I say, the evidence is all around. Without the levy there would be no trade unionism. As it is the only significant surviving remnant is in the public sector.

Posted by Brian Smith at 07:32pm on 27 August 2009

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