Krystal Ball gave an impassioned and prescient rant on unions on MSNBC’s, The Cycle. She urged citizens not to bask in the aspiration of President Obama’s speech. While the speech was a very progressive one, she states that there is one issue that went unmentioned, the decline of the American union membership.
Union membership rates are at a 97-year low. She correctly implies that unions are to Democrats what big business and the wealthy are to Republicans. She correctly states that as labor unions go, so goes the middle class. One of her best statements was:
The America we know and love is the America we know and love because of unions. They fought for better wages, equal pay, equal rights, worker safety, and even the weekend. They continue to fight today for the vision of America articulated so eloquently by the President.
Corporate America through groups like ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) are commanding Republicans to continue the systematic destruction of unions. This is done even though, for all practical purposes, businesses have their own unions (Chamber of Commerce and myriads of other trade groups) that lobby to force their will.
Many Americans, because of subliminal programming, tend to not support unions because union workers make more and they wrongfully believe union workers take more than their fair share out of the wage pool. Ironically what they should be doing is joining unions to form a united front to increase their own wages and benefits. After all, individual workers do not stand a chance at negotiating against corporations or, for that matter, any business.
Every American worker should be in a union. Corporations have highly paid lobbyists, the Chamber of Commerce, and other trade groups. They use those resources to maximize passage of laws beneficial to the companies. Who represents the workers? Unions do. As unions decline, so does the middle class.