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Unions are big business

Published March 14. 2011 05:00PM

Dear Editor:

I must admit that while reading Janet Anderson's commentary about the Wisconsin government's attack on the middle class, I had to duct tape my skull in order to keep it intact. Wow, was it difficult to get through the whole piece. Let me offer a little logic:

First, unions may be fighting for decent living, benefits and so on, but don't call them rights. Rights are granted under the Constitution and no where in that document have I read about the "Right to a decent wage."

Secondly, unions are big business, just as Exxon is big business. Don't get all emotional and drape yourself in the American flag extolling the virtues of unions. They have long since stopped being about saving children from working 16 hour days. They are about increasing union dues and building influence within the government.

Thirdly, state workers' collective bargaining absolutely has caused state fiscal crisis. You see, powerful public unions bargain with politicians, whose re-election is assisted by campaign contributions by those same unions.

The result is that many state workers have a higher pay rate, than comparable workers in private industry with wildly ambitious benefits and pensions. These wages, benefits and pensions are beyond the economics of the states, whose middle class tax base cannot support.

So, if you truly support the middle class, I'd suggest you look at the millions of taxpayers in Wisconsin and elsewhere who cannot afford higher property taxes and income taxes, whose increases are being necessitated by public employee union demands.

Additionally, any discussion of corporate greed in the current scenario is irrelevant. Corporations are not driving up state property taxes or income taxes. Corporations whose products aren't suitable for the public, go out of business. The same cannot be said for state governments. They just tax and spend more.

Finally, let me say that don't ever suggest job stability is a reason for public workers unions. United States and state government workers are the most protected work class in the world. They are not "at-will" employees, like private industry employees.

Edward Bielarski


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