MB: Well Sam I'm not against employees' organizations and quality work circles,
SDF: Quality work circles are organizations run by management for the purpose of coercing more surplus labor from the workers. This isn't a "concession" to the notion of unions, which are ostensibly organizations by, of, and for workers. (Now, of course, some unions aren't run for workers -- but the solution to that problem is not abolishing the unions.) Are you arguing that workers shouldn't organize without management's permission?
MB: but many national unions have their downsides.
SDF: So? There are also local unions.
MB: If I remember right, when railroad companies went to diesel-electrics, union rules dictated that a "fireman" be present right beside the engineer, even though there was no coal, of course, to be shovelled into a furnace to heat a boiler. i.e. they had have a guy on the payroll who did practically nothing, making him about as useful as tonsils and your appendix. It's also my understanding that union rules mandated a caboose for many years, although the diesel trains didn't need them.
SDF: We use cars to get around these days, and trucks to distribute consumer goods. My point is that it would be fallacious to generalize from one example of union practice to all union practices throughout the entire history of unionism.
MB: As for McDonald's employees, God only knows what sort of ridiculous requirements they could be pushing for.
SDF: Or such employees could be pushing for a wage the employees can live off of, for the full-timers at least. Or they could be pushing for safe working conditions. It's a false dilemma to assume that the only choices for McD's employees are bad unionization, or no unions. There must certainly be alternatives.
MB: Maybe $20 an hour, AND a free, all-you-can-eat-anytime buffet? And the "right" to walk out any time they even "think" the owner or management is being "mean" to them? It could get to the point where you have to watch the way you correct an employee whose performance is way below par. It may also be more difficult to terminate him than it is a government employee, should he turn out to really be a loser.
SDF: Mike, why do you argue this thing as if you were speaking to an audience of paranoid franchise owners? Are your friends and relatives paranoid franchise owners?
MB: In closing, I'm glad I didn't buy a Chevy last year, though this was unlikely anyway. The Ford employees seem much more loyal (oops! that dirty word!).
SDF: You know, if loyalty were the important quality that ran good businesses, why not have such businesses run by volunteers? Sure! Go to McDonalds, flip a few burgers, do some good for society, benefit your fellow human beings! Be part of what one Mc D's worker calls the "McFamily," and hasn't the family traditionally been the site of unpaid labor? One would think that, reading the praises of the business establishment from McD's workers on this board, they were volunteers already, that McD's was a charitable cause or something. And, given the wages McD's is reputed to pay its employees, maybe it IS a charitable cause. So wouldn't it be more "loyal" (oops! that dirty word again!) to just refuse wages altogether, saving the burger industry some payroll taxes perhaps?
You know, if you are all so anxious about unions, you can always go to work at the maquiladora factories just south of the Mexican border, where the police are in management's back pocket to insure that your fears of unionization will be forever quelled. (Why, I can see the rush to get past the Border Patrol into Mexico right now!)
Oh yeah, and I still haven't seen a Mike Bacon response to this post, either. How effective are you, in your role as the Voice of the American Right Wing?