Wednesday, June 8, 2016

How Hillary can leave Bernie in her progressive dust and Donald in her blue collar dust

Perfect issue for Hillary to leave Sanders in her progressive dust and Trump in her blue collar dust: make union busting a felony.  Only market in which one side may use unchecked market muscle by firing the other side's bargaining organizers -- to prevent monopsony (employer, one buyer) from being equally balanced in deal negotiating (that's "deal" as in Donald :-]) with a natural monopoly (organized employees, one seller).

Oh, it's illegal to muscle organizers alright -- and nobody would argue that it shouldn't be illegal.  There's just doesn't happen to be any working penalty other than being forced to hire the would be organizer back two or three years later (w/minimal comp for diff in wages) -- after which most are fired within a year for "something else", having no union to protect them from such.

Everybody (most anyway) think of the utter necessity of making union busting a felony for about one second -- about as long as it takes to reflect on the "immovable political object" of how things are set up now and immediately dismiss it from thought because it's, too different or something.  ???  Here's a little formulation that hopefully can make the thought of penalizing market busting on a grownup level last a few seconds longer:

In a labor market where wage levels are set by what I call subsistence-plus -- bottom skills paid by the very minimum below which no one will show up; better English, Starbucks?; better education, Whole Foods?, paid off in increments above the bottom -- where pay levels  depend wholly on worker compared to worker, rather than on what the ultimate consumer might have been willing to pony up (like we focus on in minimum wage discussions),  ...

... even with a labor force of 100% rich country workers (one example, primarily American born taxi drivers -- who will show up for $800/wk but not $400/wk) wage levels will be lower than in ...

... a labor market with 50% rich country and 50% poor country workers (possible population example, Chicago -- 40% white, 40% Black, 20% Hispanic) where wage levels are set by collectively bargaining -- according to how much can be squeezed out of the ultimate consumer (again, same as in minimum wage discussions).

Only look at France or Germany where a mixture of rich country and poor country workers does not put French or German workers out of work (think American born taxi drivers and the Crips and the Bloods).  Collective bargaining sets the rate of pay regardless of who is on the receiving end of the paycheck.  In Chicago fast food work has been outsourced to Mexico and India while Chicago taxi driving outsourced all over the world.

There's possibly another election angle (writing and thinking): collective bargaining could render immigration much more harmless appearing to some.  Of course we know Trump supporters are on financially better off than most -- many but not all.

Anybody ready to think for a couple of extra seconds?

Making union busting a felony, automatically backed by federal and 33 state RICO statutes (the latter necessary to deter employers from pushing the limits for too long) should be a shoe-in in progressive states (WA, OR, CA, NV, IL, NY, MD?) if someone would just make it a national issue.


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