[Serious] What are your personal thoughts on labor unions and unions in general?

[Serious] What are your personal thoughts on labor unions and unions in general?

What do you think?

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  1. They had their share of problems, but look where we’ve gone without them? Yeah, they were infiltrated by corruption and organized crime. But you could support a family without getting a college degree. As they started getting weaker (I think it started in the ’80s, but maybe others see it differently), more and more money started accumulating with fewer and fewer people – and I think those two things are at least related.

  2. As a teacher for 16 years, I felt that the union was, on one hand, over-the-top. Constantly calling everything an “outrage,” and always beating the drum for *mo’ money, mo’ money, mo’ money.*

    On the other hand, it’s clear that without the union, administration would pay teachers starvation wages and expect them to work 18 hour days, and the minute a parent complained about them, would fire said teacher without hesitation and get a new sucker straight out of college to fill the position. They’d go through teachers like some sports team owners go through coaches. And parents (and kids) would always blame teachers for their own failures.

    So I came to the conclusion that teaching was like going to prison: you have to join one of the gangs, or everyone will fuck you.

  3. I think any group is prone to corruption, even when elected.

    That being said, the alternative is to be ruled by an unelected, barely regulated corporation/industry that can abuse your time, body, brain, and then fire you without notice.

    Unions gave us weekends and safer working conditions. I’d love to see what unions could do for us today.

    For Americans, this might mean better pay, better vacation, paid parental leave, enforcing boundaries between workers and their bosses, and fighting for workers with disabilities.

    I don’t know. We need to do something because both parties in the government don’t seem to care.

    Note: Any group with a lot of power should not have a union, as it’s used to protect its members from consequences rather than from the industry they work for.

  4. Teacher here: I keep hearing how crazy powerful these teacher unions are. I wish that was true. Granted I’m in red state, kentucky, but the last governor recently tried gutting our pension and our association, not even a union here, didn’t do jack.

    It took teachers in the state literally striking to stop that craziness.

    Personally they can be great but like all things needs to be regulated to a middle ground. Of course they can become two powerful but the alternative is that the corporation undercuts the employee

  5. Labor unions protect the workers of a large company by acting as a single voice, speaking for all workers, that can negotiate with management. Unfortunately, corruption is corruption and unions have had their fair share of it in the recent past. Successful unions will give workers a living wage which will make products more expensive but that’s the price we have to pay.

  6. I’d be for it if unions didn’t seem to be totally corrupt and run by idiots. It’s like communism, in theory great, but in practice corruption seems to find the cracks and the union bosses seem to be the only beneficiaries.

  7. Unions have done a lot of great things for workers in the past (weekends, paid time off, etc.) but today, in my industry, they shelter people who are incompetent and get in the way of getting stuff done. The company I work for is a combination of smaller companies that have been bought out. It has both union and non-union sections. The union section causes more trouble than the rest of the company combined.

  8. well, my first instincts on that one are negative. I tend to think of them as meddling assholes who never let anything get done.

    I really have to ask myself though, where did those ideas come from..?

  9. Been a military and federal worker most of my life, when i first got a job that had a “union” setup, i learned that most people go there because they “feel like things are unfair” and 9/10 THEY are the one with the issue, THEY are the over sensitive one on an issue that shouldn’t even be an issue, THEY are the one trying to take advantage of something that shouldn’t be taken advantage of, and they want the Union to step in and “make it right” for them. I’ve seen the Union do some good though too, like one time (we’ll call him Bob), Bob was being told to work a different shift than what he was hired for (typically I would tell Bob to suck it up and just do the work, as it was only for a few months and he would be fine) but Bob had kids at home and was a single parent and just couldn’t swing this shift, his manager was telling him that he either does this shift or gets fired. Bob needed this job and can’t get fired, he also can’t do this shift due to his kids needing him. So Bob used the Union, they stepped in and stopped the whole thing from happening because it literally went against the exact shift that he signed up for and was hired for…
    >> So like I said, most of the time, the Union is for a bunch of whine ass bitches that can’t just suck it up and do their job like everybody else and they feel like some type of unfairness is punching them in the face, but really they have youngest sibling syndrome. Then there are a few times, like Bob here, who actually use the Union for what it’s made for.

    Anyway, that’s my experience.

  10. Exploiting the system can happen either way, however, with the wealth gap spreading further and further, unions are needed way more now than ever. Especially when multi-billion dollar corporations spend millions trying to keep workers from forming one.

    It’s now common to need 2 or 3 jobs just to survive in the city you live in. Minimum wage goes up at a snail’s pace, if at all. Raising a family in a home in a city is nearly impossible with even with 2 average salaries and daycare costs nearly negating an entire salary. Currently, mid generation, the millennials make around 4% of the GDP. When the Boomers were 35, it was 21%. There’s no fucking money to sustain us into the future anymore. The system is out balance and the next few generations aren’t going to have a good time.

  11. I was in a grocery store workers union, it was an utter waste. Unions have worked out ok for people I know doing construction. Working in tech, I don’t feel the need for one. I’m happy with my benefits without having to pay dues

  12. They’re good when they do the job they’re supposed to do, which is ensure employees get a livable wage and are treated fairly (e.g. not getting fired just because the boss doesn’t like you.) Otherwise a waste of time and money. I worked a minimum wage part time job with no benefits in my teens, that was unionized. Why even bother at that point?

  13. To me it makes good sense to unionize.

    By bringing workers together to collectively air out their grievances, needs, criticisms, that helps focus on problems with a given employer. If such businesses seek to profit and, at the same time, at least *appear* convincingly to be legtitimate, it makes transparent some of the internals of a large work force.

    Also, it seems in the best interest of high-level executives to listen to their employees, lest they casually stride into the executive offices and compel them to take a dirt nap with a handy Swingline stapler or other items.

  14. Since capital and its interests are organized, almost by definition, there is no alternative to labor and its interests being organized too.

    Unless you like organized militaries slaughtering unorganized civilians of course.

  15. I think labor unions are a necessary part of the workforce and play an important role in advocating for the rights of workers. Without unions, employers would have a lot more power to exploit employees, and workers would be at a disadvantage when it comes to negotiating for better wages and benefits.

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