The Boston Globe has a major piece on a federal investigation of union “strong-arm tactics.” Hmm, since when are “strong-arm tactics” ever associated with unions? Why, that never happens! And apparently it is involving Boston Mayor Mahty Walsh, who was a
pinky-ring union thug union leader prior to his becoming Mayor of Boston.
Union membership has declined from about 24% of workers in 1973 to about 11% in 2014, according to WSJ. That is because there are a lot of workers who don’t like being pushed around and their union dues spent by union hacks on political campaigns the workers oppose. In my view, union membership should be voluntary. There should be no coercion in the relationships between employers and workers, from either side. And I am totally opposed to “collective bargaining.” Individual workers should negotiate contracts with their employers. “Collective bargaining” just doesn’t even make sense to me.
Walter Block asks, Is there a right to unionize? and has this political economic analysis on labor relations, unions, and collective bargaining. And he also asks, Are unions criminal gangs? I have no answer to those questions, as I have not fully studied the issue. I do, however, have a good sense of right versus wrong, and it’s wrong morally to commit acts of violence, or even to use coercion by threatening violence against others and perhaps also if such threats are implied threats, “if you know what I mean,” and so on.
Another thing about unions. Walter Williams has noted the racist history of unions and their support of the minimum wage to shut out black or other minority workers. Thomas Sowell elaborates on those important points. Now, I am not suggesting that the mayor of Boston might be a racist or that his possible alleged union thuggery may have been to shut out a non-union contractor who possibly employed more minorities than Walsh’s preferred union contractors, I am not suggesting that. In fact, it is probably not the case, and, like most union cronies, Walsh would want to protect his fellow union workers regardless of anyone’s race. In my view, Boston does not have any more overall institutionalized racism than the rest of America in general, despite the terrible false reputation of racism that Boston’s judicially-imposed forced busing caused during the 1970s.
Nevertheless I am opposed to “strong-arm tactics,” no matter who is using them, whether it’s from the unions or their leaders or minions, or during political caucuses and conventions, and so forth.