Still plenty of work to do in New York in smashing unions into submission

Unions are in a death spiral, they have ceased to be useful and are inf act a hindrance on business. In the private sector in New Zealand we have managed to reduce the representation of unions to under 10%. We must work harder.

In New York they are celebrating the drop to 11.3%, which is a 97 year low…they must try harder too:

The long decline in the number of American workers belonging to labor unions accelerated sharply last year, according to data reported on Wednesday, sending the unionization rate to its lowest level in close to a century. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the total number of union members fell by 400,000 last year, to 14.3 million, even though the nation’s overall employment rose by 2.4 million. The percentage of workers in unions fell to 11.3 percent, down from 11.8 percent in 2011, the bureau found in its annual report on union membership. That brought unionization to its lowest level since 1916, when it was 11.2 percent, according to a study by two Rutgers economists, Leo Troy and Neil Sheflin.

Labor specialists cited several reasons for the steep one-year decline in union membership. Among the factors were new laws that rolled back the power of unions in Wisconsin, Indiana and other states, the continued expansion by manufacturers like Boeing and Volkswagen in nonunion states and the growth of sectors like retail and restaurants, where unions have little presence.

Unionists love a good sing-along…there just aren’t that many of them now for a decent chorus:

Thank god this attitude is dying out, like the dinosaurs.


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  • Pissedoffyouth

    I understand why unions can be appealing, getting better wages for the working man etc but the only reason you’re on minimum wage is because your skills aren’t worth more.

    Get skills in something an employer needs and you’ll get a pay rise. Easy as.

    • StupidDisqus

      Get skills in something an employer needs and perhaps you’ll keep your job.

      Remember, NZ wages need to drop by about half to make NZ “workers” as productive as Aussie workers; and to about 10% to compete with China.

      Kein Arbeit, Kein Essen.

      • Hazards001

        Does that include yours 2nd ammendment? Economist..whoever you are today?

    • Hazards001

      Interesting whos defination are skills usefull? When your toilet is spewing shit on your carpet do you want the IT guy with the MIT degree in computer science earning 120k per annum to turn up or would you rather they sent the plumbers apprentice thats making 11k?

      • Pissedoffyouth

        What a silly question. skills are deemed useful by people willing to pay for your work.

        I’d rather pay for a full, certified plumber and because he’s the only one who can fix the problem, he can charge me as much as he likes – especially if there are no other plumbers in town.

        The apprentice is on the low amount because he hasn’t gotten his certificates and so isn’t as worthy to employers. But once he finishes his certificates and can start charging full rates, watch his income go higher – and they aren’t cheap.

        The IT guy is on 120k because his range of skills are worth that much to a company or a person willing to pay that much – its that simple.

        If you are on the minimum wage for your job then that is all you are worth to that particular employer, and if you want to start earning more money instead of staying in that job go and get skilled in something that people are willing to pay for. Anyone can do it, it just takes effort.

        Basic economic theory – supply and demand.

        • Hazards001

          Street sweeper Garbage collector doesnt really matter what it is..and I and demand.
          So when that low paid group of people get together over a glass water at their slum and realise that if they all decide to stop picking up the garbage at the same time until they get a bit more money what do we have?
          That’s right..a union. Supply and Demand.
          What I was trying to say is the world needs those on lower pays as well because I’m fairly sure you want your shit cleaned up behind you, your mail delivered the office building you work in cleaned blah blah blah. I suspect that you have never really had to get your hands dirty..I wonder how long you would last if you had too?
          And change your fucking’s creepy and detracts from your comments. All of which i take an interest in and some I agree with.

          • Pissedoffyouth

            I worked cleaning toilets at gas stations and movie cinema’s when I was at high school. I agree with you, yes, the world needs the shit cleaners, mail delivery etc.

            Those kind of jobs should have a high turnover though. They should be a stepping stone, for high school kids or university students or even people who find themselves desperately needing a job in the interim – and by giving people higher pay in those kinds of jobs it removes the drive to get a better job, upskill etc.
            Similar to why people stay on the dole, they only get $50 a week more or even have to pay more money in rent if they go back to work.

            If as a culture we reinstated the drive for success, and removing the “I’m happy being on minimum wage/the dole” attitude we’d be happier, wealthier, and have a much more rewarding lifestyle.

            As for my avatar, I’ll change it once it stops making me laugh every day – its on the cards

          • Hazards001

            Cleaning toilets at your picture theater as a snot nosed brat (cinema is a yank word) is not getting your hands dirty. Before I was a teenager I worked on farms as a roustabout during the shearing season, when I was older..14 I was allowed to go on the Black Current threshing machines..I killed adults doing that job. Come back to me when you’ve had a real job.

            There are people out there that have those jobs.. minimum wage because they cannot do better..not wont..can’t! Do you understand that?

            There are of course people that refuse to work at all…those are the ones we should take a harder look at!

            You need to take a long hard look at yourself pal. You are arrogant and have a high opinion of yourself. You better hope your perfect world doesn’t shift alignment, I suspect you might struggle to deal with that. And as to your janitorial duties I’d take a wild guess and suspect you were well supported by your parents that probably got you the work…if you found it yourself big up’s to you!
            As to your avatar..well hey..if it rocks your world who am I? I don’t get it (Still sucks though!) lol

          • Pissedoffyouth

            Well unlike you I believe anyone can do better if they want to.

            I don’t understand how I’m arrogant about any of this, or have a high opinion of yourself – I haven’t even mentioned my life apart from what I did as a teenager? I’m not bragging about what I have done with my life, so not sure why your using that angle.

            You are correct that yes, my parents put a roof over my head and fed me during the time when I worked minimum wage – but they also told me that I had to find something better because that always wouldn’t be the case, so I did. I found the jobs on my own, did what any other teenager does and walk in and ask for an application.

            And about me finding a real job, well I don’t know what determines a real job but if its for minimum wage doing manual labour then no, I’m afraid not.

      • LabTested

        My next door neighbour is a plumber. Lives in a $M+ house. Clearly plumbing skills are useful, because people will pay for them.

        Southland Institute of Technology is offering Zero Fees study

        Including in Plumbing

        So if someone is earning a minimum wage and they are too lazy to go off and learn to be a plumber then it is their own fault.

        BTW. my 18 year old daughter & 18 year old nephew are both working pretty much full time over the university break. Each has a couple of part time jobs, only one of which pays minimum wage.

        The are plenty of useful skills, which are not too hard to acquire which employers are willing to pay good money for,

        • Hazards001

          Right..see my reply to POY…pretty much covers it.

  • In Vino Veritas

    If Unions had stuck to the task for which they were created, instead of becoming blatantly politically one sided, they might have had a better chance of surviving. Unions are a big part of various Labour Parties of the world, and hence their memberships are falling. Why would a center or center right voter ever want to be part of a union, when he knows his fees are basically a donation to a left leaning party?

    • StupidDisqus

      Idiot. Unions were always one sided – against productive risk takers, against people who do actual work, and in favour of bludging scum.

      That’s the whole point of unions and why they – along with their political spawn, labour & greens & mana – have no place in a modern democracy.

      Unions – especially in the public service – should be banned. Conspiricies to impose costs on employers or other business (e.g. organising strikes, lockouts, trying to jack up wages) should be criminal and civil offenses, Anyone whose ever been a unionist, or a Labour or Green voter should lose the right to vote – in perpetuity.

      • blazer

        what a load of nonsense.’Productive risk takers’??Like those who provide finance I suppose!

      • In Vino Veritas

        Stupid in name, stupid in reality.

      • Hazards001

        You really are a vile little shit aren’t you?

    • Hazards001

      Correct. Along with the fact that the validity of unions has been pissed away by the self aggrandizing shitbags that pay themselves huge salaries and drive in brand new Ford Falcons while the people paying them can’t afford to get the brakes fixed on the 15 year old Corolla.

  • Richard McGrath

    Read an article recently on the most desirable American states to live in. New York came dead last – thanks to high taxation, harsh gun laws (and therefore high rates of violent crime), and high unionisation.

  • blazer

    and yet the states with the strongest unions are the most prosperous .

    • In Vino Veritas

      Not for long, according to the tenor of this article.

    • manuka416

      The 2012 Legatum Prosperity Index top 10:

      1. Norway
      2. Denmark
      3. Sweden
      4. Australia
      5. New Zealand
      6. Canada
      7. Finland
      8. Netherlands
      9. Switzerland
      10. Ireland

      The Scandinavian countries are highly unionised.

      • AnonWgtn

        The Scandinavians are also the highest taxed.
        Look at their comparative GST percentages. Will frighten you.
        In Copenhage I paid the equivalent of NZ$9 for a single banana, and it was very poor.

        • blokeintakapuna

          yeah – but they have Ikea… and hot Nordic woman!

      • In Vino Veritas

        And the three major Unions (LO, FTF and AC) in Denmark insist on complete independence from political parties.

        In Norway, Sweden and Denmark, whilst union membership remains high, it has been in decline for over 10 years.