Friday, February 18, 2011

Why Do Public Employees Need A Union?

With all the protests going on in Wisconsin I started thinking of a more interesting question. Why do public employees need to have a union? It makes no sense. The government is the people, is it not? Public unions were formed to fight against ourselves to get more from ourselves? If that sounded funny, I couldn't agree with you more, and is exactly why I bring up this topic.

Unions have been around for over 100 years and make total sense for employees of private companies. Each private company has different rules that they enforce on their employees and unions are needed in that case to ensure that those employees are paid a fair wage and not being taken advantage of. What unions did was make sure the employees were taken care of at a time when no rights were given to them working for a company. Companies took advantage of people to get max profits, and there was no recourse for doing this until the government allowed unions to form. As a result, rights for workers increased for many. I have no problem with that.

Public sector employees forming unions however makes no sense. Unions for them fight the government for better wages and better benefits. The thing is that government is the people. We are fighting against ourselves as opposed to private industry where employees are fighting against an entity (corporation). If something unjust is happening to public employees we as citizens have the ability to vote and to decide when these employees get raises and more benefits, and to also keep them from suffering too much as well.

Unions in the public sector have created a situation where far too much has been given to public employees at the expense of the US taxpayer. Public employees enjoy far more benefits than their neighbor who is paying their salaries. There is no need and no reason for public employees to be fighting to get a decent wage, it makes no sense. If they truly did need wage increases, benefit increases, rule changes, or anything else, the people will decide that at the proper time. To have a union to fight against ourselves looks like we are fighting each other. Again it sounds ridiculous to read, but that is essentially what is happening.

I am not against unions, I believe unions are very important in providing certain protections for employees from companies. What unions have done is make sure companies provide decent wages to employees of all industries in the private sector, even those who don't deal in union workers. All unions are doing in the public sector is driving tax rates up and unfairly providing those workers with benefits that most Americans will never see.

Why do public employees need unions? The answer is that they don't. They have gone far too long with too many privileges and power against their fellow Americans. Its time to dissolve public unions and stop fighting ourselves before we bankrupt our states and tax each other to death.

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