Connecticut Unions Feeling Blue
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  • Soul

    For the private unions, we have a family friend that owns an electrical company that uses union workers. What your article mentions is pretty much what he says also. Bud feels todays unions need to specially market themselves as being better quality – maybe similar to a German type approach to engineered goods.

  • Kenny

    Personally I think the Wagner Act needs to be repealed and let unions stand or fall on their own without the tacit backing of government.

  • Daddy would be crying in his grave if he could see what has happened to the American labor movement. He was the Yankee in the family — moved to Chattanooga from Cincinnati to go to prep school when his father died and married my mother at the beginning of the Depression. They were both public school teachers, and when the city started firing teachers left and right and cutting their salaries unilaterally, he organized a local chapter of the American Federation of Teachers, one of the first in the South if not the first. He enjoyed the experience so much and was so good at it apparently that he quit his teaching post and went to work full-time for the International Lady Garment Workers Union, and after that as a political operative flying all over the South on DC-3.s. I can remember going to pick him up at Lovell Field as a little boy, him flying in from Little Rock or some such place and how excited my parents would be in the car on the way back home. They loved politics with a passion and whenever state and local elections came round out would come the file boxes filled with 3×5 cards. The house would fill up with people in a party atmosphere as they organized the election right down to the precinct level. What fun they had and how often they won! Estes Kefaufer was a family friend and once I can remember, I must have been ten or twelve, Arthur Schlesinger Jr. was at a party in our house, everyone drinking and laughing and talking nothing but politics.

    My point? Daddy was an educated man — had a “Harvard” accent, they used to joke, which was just another way of saying he came from up North and had a college degree. He was a hard working man, conscientious, dedicated, honest to a fault, and with a good sense of humor; the same could be said of most of his “brothers,” as they called each other.. Those kind of people have disappeared from the American labor movement. And it shows, just as Charles Murray predicted it would. Which is not to deny the labor movement always had its faults. There were thugs to be fought, sometimes quite literally, and communists who had to be identified and weeded out. There may have even been a fundamental flaw in the very concept of collective bargaining; our family used to argue about such things across the dinner table, where talking religion and politics was the main entertainment. Yet in an imperfect world that old labor movement, warts and all, helped lay the foundations for the New Deal and the prosperity working people enjoyed in the 1950’s and early 60’s.

    Looking forward, I see the need for a truly national political party that can effectively represent the interests of labor in the halls of Congress. Political organizine is the only kind of organizing that needs to be done. We need to reform trade and immigration law to protect our wges and rewrite the Fair Labor Standards Act to reflect fifty years of progress in labor-saving technology. Then, and only then, will the eighty-five percent of the people who make their livings with their hands and their feet share in the fruits of our amazing economy.

    The times are getting so bad that I might even consider voting for Sarah Palin if she decides to run. At least she knows first-hand the world of hard physical work most Americans live in. And if she is truly a rogue candidte who knows in which direction she may go? It couldn’t possibly be worse than the direction Obama is taking us, or that a Perry or Romney would choose.

  • A

    The name is Molloy.

    • Walter Russell Mead

      @A: Noted. Correction being made; interns being flogged. Senior management scheduled for weekend retreat at glamorous country estate to reflect on the need for higher standards among the junior staff.

  • CT Citizen

    The name is correct in the article. Gov. Dannel MALLOY
    In addition to thousands of layoff notices sent out, the governor put public pressure upon the state employees by cutting vital services many of which will not be restored despite the new union agreement. The regulations on how unions vote and how the votes are counted had to be changed as well.
    CT is currently the wealthiest state in the country. It currently has the largest income gap between wealth and poverty as well as the biggest difference in education scores for wealthy towns vs poor ones. New Haven has the 4th highest murder rate in the nation. Prisons are being closed and corrections officers reduced. Prisoners escaping from halfway houses happen regularly. Brutal home invasions are happening even in upscale neighborhoods.
    CT has plenty of money. How it is allocated is the problem not union workers trying to make a living in a safe environment.

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