Unions suck the life blood out of companies and industry. They add little and eventually suck the life out of their own members:
In 1914, Henry Ford doubled his employees’ wages to $5 a day and cut their workday to eight hours. He then hired more people. He didn’t do this out of benevolence. As Adam Smith wrote in “The Wealth of Nations,” “It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.” It was in Ford’s interest to increase his company’s profits, and to do that he needed to attract the best workers he could find. When companies compete for workers, they get higher wages and better working conditions. Ford shortened the workday to better compete. Then GM and Chrysler matched Ford’s deal to keep up. Workers won.
All without a union. It wasn’t until 30 years later that the UAW appeared and unionized the workers. Union membership gave them good benefits for a while, but then growth slowed and stopped. That sure didn’t help workers. Consider what happened at GM. Over the past 20 years, much-less-unionized Toyota created 15,000 jobs — in America, not in Japan. Over that same period, GM lost 400,000 American jobs. One reason GM shrank was union rules. How’s that good for workers?
Unions cause class war against the bosses, without realising along the way it is the profit of those bosses that allow workers to benefit. When the profits cease then the workers suffer.
Of course workers have a right to unionize — it’s part of freedom of association. But to be effective, that right needs a free-market environment. That means no compulsory membership — free association, not forced association. Second, enterprise must be truly free and competitive, which means no privilege or favoritism from government — no bailouts and crony capitalism.
When enterprise is competitive, workers acquire more bargaining power because multiple employers bid for their services. Also, self-employment is a real option because no government barriers to entry prevent it (like licensing, zoning or complicated taxes and rules). As the great economics writer Henry Hazlitt pointed out, free unions can play a constructive role when they have to attract members by offering valuable services, such as information on the latest market conditions. But the market must be free in all respects.
Today, workers should know the downside of unionizing. It’s not just the cost of their union dues. It’s the opportunities lost in union shops because the rules limit entrepreneurs’ ability to change, adapt and grow. It’s that freedom — free enterprise — that gives America and workers the power to prosper.
Tom Chivers attempts and fails to understand greens opposition to nuclear power:
I don’t like the idea of being “fundamentally opposed” to one of the most obvious available options for keeping our lights on. If it is shown to be safe and economic, then we should use it. It’s not a moral issue; it’s just one more tool, which we can use well or badly, safely or unsafely. Also: how can an energy technology be “elitist”? I literally don’t know what that means. Is it elitist because it’s hi-tech and third-world countries can’t easily make their own? Well, so are iPads, then, and Toyota Priuses. Or does the word “elitist” just mean “bad” in Green-land, in the same way that “natural” means “good”? [Edit: I can't believe I didn't pick up on "undemocratic" as well. Since when are power stations democratic institutions?]
As for it not being renewable: well, neither is sunlight or the wind, if you’re taking a sufficiently long view. Eventually the Sun will consume the last of its hydrogen and expand into a red giant, probably blasting the Earth to its constituent atoms as it does so. But that’s quite a long way off, so we don’t worry about that. In the shorter but still decently long term, even if no more uranium deposits are found (although they will be) and no more efficient ways of using it developed (although they will be), “total identified resources are sufficient for over 100 years of supply”, according to the IAEA. That ain’t nothing.
“Carbon neutral” is a bit of a red herring as well in this case. It’s true, nuclear power is not carbon neutral. But it’s much less carbon positive, if that makes sense, than fossil fuels. The perfect is the enemy of the good, as the saying goes: just because something isn’t the best possible, doesn’t mean you should ignore it if it’s an improvement over what is available. Furthermore, there is potential to improve the carbon emissions of nuclear; if it is made economically attractive to do so, companies will do it themselves. Targeted carbon taxes, or an auction of carbon credits, would work; certainly the latter did for industrial sulphur dioxide emissions.
Of course once rpesented with all that the Green types fall back on the “safety” issue. But that too is a fatuous argument:
It’s about safety. Nuclear power is unsafe. Look at Chernobyl, look at Three Mile Island, look at Fukushima. It’s dangerous, as the Greens say, and its cost, dangers and waste will be “passed on to future generations”.
But as Prof Paddy Regan says in our paper today, that’s false. Chernobyl killed about 50 people (28 people in the immediate weeks after; an estimated 19, according to the WHO, died of radiation-induced cancers in the following 20 years). Three Mile Island killed, and indeed harmed, precisely nobody. And Fukushima was the most ridiculous of all: as a vast earthquake and tsunami killed 15,000 people, the world’s attention was focused on a meltdown in a 40-year-old reactor which, again, killed no one at all.
The Herald has an article yesterday about seriously gay cars…hybrids:
Hybrid cars are on a slow burn in New Zealand, in more ways than one. They use clever technology to minimise fuel use, but they have also had minimal impact on new-car sales. Less than 5 per cent of registrations are hybrid vehicles.
How come? Given that hybrid technology seems to enjoy a reputation as the answer to the automotive world’s emissions woes, our roads should be absolutely crawling with them. That’s not the case, for a number of reasons.
Despite the cheapness of the lot, the car was fine. In fact it was brand new – only 300 miles on the odometer. The car was a Prius, which Anna (who votes Greens) was very happy about, while my focus was on more practical matters such as the fact there is no ignition key.
I shake my head in disbelief. Jet-lag cannot even explain why he had to blog that. I was sick just a little bit in my mouth when I read it and I feel sick just writing about it.
Oh no, all those cocks out there that insist on re-usable shopping bags are going to be more than a little upset about the news that they aren’t so good for the environment after all. I fully expect to see Wendyl Nissen decrying the use of these bags with all their chemicals and poisons that they contain. She won’t of course because the green goddess is like all green prophets, an appalling hypocrite.
They dangle from the arms of many New Yorkers, a nearly ubiquitous emblem of empathy with the environment: synthetic, reusable grocery bags, another must-have accessory for the socially conscious.
But the bags, hot items at upscale markets, may be on the verge of a glacier-size public relations problem: similar bags outside the city have been found to contain lead.
“They say plastic bags are bad; now they say these are bad. What’s worse?” asked Jen Bluestein, who was walking out of Trader Joe’s on the Upper West Side with a reusable bag under her arm on Sunday.
“Green is a trend and people go with trends,” Ms. Bluestein said. “People get them as fashion statements and they have, like, 50 of them. I don’t think people know the real facts.”
There is no evidence that these bags pose an immediate threat to the public, and none of the bags sold by New York City’s best-known grocery stores have been implicated. But reports from around the country have trickled in recently about reusable bags, mostly made in China, that contained potentially unsafe levels of lead. The offending bags were identified at several stores, including some CVS pharmacies; the Rochester-based Wegman’s grocery chain recalled thousands of its bags, made of recycled plastic, in September.
Concerns have proliferated so much that Senator Charles E. Schumer, a New York Democrat, sent a letter on Sunday to the Food and Drug Administration, urging the agency to investigate the issue.
I just bet Wendyl Nissen has heaps of these bags in the back of her “very green” toxic vehicle, the Toyota Prius. The irony is that people like her lobbied to remove lead from paint and petrol on the premise that it was poisoning us and now they insist we used re-usuable bags filled with the stuff.
Wendyl Nissen, the green goddess, is just such and appalling hypocrite.
Watts up with That posted a very good video that described people like Wendyl Nissen to a tee.
and then there is this Australian view of the “green” Prius.
When will car manufacturers start advertising and sponsoring more muscular cars and commentators, having them drive manly cars/trucks?
I bet my audience slays Wendyl’s any day of the week. So if you want to look like a goober, lose money, and yet feel “good” about being “Green” then follow the banal touting of Wendyl Nissen.
Oh and about those nasty chemicals she won’t have in her garage? She forgot to mention the 45 litres of petrol sitting in the fuel tank.
The material safety data sheet for unleaded gasoline shows at least fifteen hazardous chemicals occurring in various amounts, including benzene (up to 5% by volume), toluene (up to 35% by volume), naphthalene (up to 1% by volume), trimethylbenzene (up to 7% by volume), Methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) (up to 18% by volume, in some states) and about ten others.
Wendyl Nissen has created a niche for herself and given herself the self aggrandizing title of “The Green Goddess”.
Every day on NewstalkZB and presumably on other radion station you get to listen to her utterly trite advert touting for Toyota Prius vehicles and Giltrap City Toyota.
It makes me want to spew that people like her tout such utter rubbish. It has finally motivated me enough to get angry about the lies she spouts.
Wendyl Nissen is basically for Toyota, presumably they gave her the car in the first place and she is doing it under her self created title the Green Goddess. She is either wilfully ignoring the technical details of the Toyota Prius or is a just a usual typical green liar.
Here are some facts that should make her hair stand on end.
So lets look at just those two components, and lets ignore that you have to mine the raw material first up to even get to process it. We will also ignore the syntheic tyres, the composite plastics and every other chemical in these cars and focus on just two small components. I will highlight the non green parts of her “very green Toyota Prius”.
Neodymium is never found in nature as the free element; rather, it occurs in ores such as monazite and bastnäsite that contain small amounts of all the rare earth metals. The main mining areas are China, United States, Brazil, India, Sri Lanka and Australia; and reserves of neodymium are estimated at about 8 million tonnes
Neodymium metal dust is a combustion and explosion hazard. Neodymium compounds, as with all rare earth metals, are of low to moderate toxicity; however its toxicity has not been thoroughly investigated. Neodymium dust and salts are very irritating to the eyes and mucous membranes, and moderately irritating to skin. Breathing the dust can cause lung embolisms, and accumulated exposure damages the liver. Neodymium also acts as an anticoagulant…
Gee, nice stuff….certainly not a benign chemical…could even qualify as a “nasty chemical”. The second item is Lanthanum.
Lanthanum is most commonly obtained from monazite and bastnäsite. The mineral mixtures are crushed and ground. Monazite, because of its magnetic properties, can be separated by repeated electromagnetic separation. After separation, it is treated with hot concentrated sulfuric acid to produce water-soluble sulfates of rare earths. The acidic filtrates are partially neutralized with sodium hydroxide to pH 3-4. Thorium precipitates out of solution as hydroxide and is removed. After that, the solution is treated with ammonium oxalate to convert rare earths to their insoluble oxalates. The oxalates are converted to oxides by annealing. The oxides are dissolved in nitric acid that excludes one of the main components, cerium, whose oxide is insoluble in HNO3. Lanthanum is separated as a double salt with ammonium nitrate by crystallization. This salt is relatively less soluble than other rare earth double salts and therefore stays in the residue.
Gee…more “nasty chemicals”, used to manufacture a key component of the Toyota Prius. Her “very green” car is looking decidedly sick.
One by-product of the manufacturing process is Thorium, a naturally occurring, slightly radioactivemetal. horium, as well as uranium and plutonium, can be used as fuel in a nuclear reactor. Cool, her “very green car” now produces a by-product for the nuclear industry.
like all rare-earth metals, is of low to moderate toxicity. Cerium is a strong reducing agent and ignites spontaneously in air at 65 to 80 °C. Fumes from cerium fires are toxic. Water should not be used to stop cerium fires, as cerium reacts with water to produce hydrogen gas. Workers exposed to cerium have experienced itching, sensitivity to heat, and skin lesions. Animals injected with large doses of cerium have died due to cardiovascular collapse. Cerium(IV) oxide is a powerful oxidizing agent at high temperatures and will react with combustible organic materials. While cerium is not radioactive, the impure commercial grade may contain traces of thorium, which is radioactive.
All of this makes Wendyl Nissen a class A hypocrite, or an idiot.
For me, I don’t care what goes into a care or what is dug out of the ground and subjected to extremely toxic chemical processes to make one thing or another. But then again, I am not preaching about how green I am or how I hate “toxic chemicals” all the time touting for a car made from extremely toxic substances.
The best part though is this;
The chemical compoundammonium nitrate, the nitrate of ammonia with the chemical formula NH4NO3, is a white crystalline solid at room temperature and standard pressure. It is commonly used in agriculture as a high-nitrogen fertilizer, and it has also been used as an oxidizing agent in explosives, including improvised explosive devices. It is the main component of ANFO, a very popular explosive.
The Green Goddess, who likes “everything, and I mean everything” natural and organic is using a car that uses substantial quantities of a fertilser that she herself , being an organic gardener, would never put on her garden and is also a key component in a very popular commercial explosive, not to mention the explosive used to bring down the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma, killing 168 peopl including 19 children. Green Goddess?…more like supporter of terrorist weapons of mass desrtuction.
I guess hypocrisy for Greens doesn’t matter, still its better than catching your husband gobbling cock I suppose.