Article by Colonel Nogov on Jan. 27,2015
Government employee unions (aka teachers unions)
I have no problem with unions if they existed in a free society. I don’t think it would be necessary, but it might in some instances. If employees got together to negotiate a better wage or benefit from their employer, in a free society, in a free market there would be nothing wrong with that.
The problem arises, as usual, when government gets involved. Government writes legislation favoring one group or the other, and it’s usually the unions and not the employer. This is wrong for many reasons when it involves private businesses.
It doesn’t get much more evil than government employee unions. In a private business negotiation, it’s adversarial. The employee union and the employer both want the opposite thing and they have to compromise to find common ground. Not so with a government employee union. Who is their adversary? There really isn’t one. The union negotiates with the politicians. The politicians are also government employees.
The unions donate heavily to politicians. Once those politicians are elected, they are beholden to the unions. The very unions they’re allegedly negotiating with. The politicians would give the unions everything they wanted if they could. They do have one small constraint, the voters, but it is very small. The unions take care of that problem with a PR blitz. They appeal to the voters emotions about teachers and children. ‘Teachers are the backbone of our society’, they say, ‘children are our future’, they say, ‘we have to take care of them’, they say.
It’s all for one purpose, to get more money and benefits. More for teachers, more for union reps, more for politicians. The children? Well, not so much. They live in the hell that is the government school system as nothing but political pawns. Test scores are falling, we need more money. The graduation rates are falling, we need more money. The literacy rate is falling, we need more money. We also need more days off. We need shorter work days. We need more vacation and sick days. We need job security. Does anything ever get better once the demands are met? No, in fact it gets even worse.
What happens when the voters elect someone not in the union’s pocket and attempts to stand up to the union? They pull the ultimate strong arm tactic and strike. This creates havoc in the community. Parents have to make arrangements to take care of their kids. Maybe they have to take off work, which causes more damage to the community.
If there was a free market in education, there would be high quality education at low cost, but because of the government school system and the teacher’s unions, we get the opposite, low quality and high cost. Education is an essential service you say. I agree, that’s why it should be taken out of the hands of government. If something is essential, the market will provide it. Not only will it provide it, it will provide in such a variety of ways that you can’t even imagine it right now. Think back before the personal computer was developed, people couldn’t even imagine it. Computers were big bulky things that took up entire rooms. Today, the variety is nearly unlimited from desktops to laptops to tablets to hand held devices, multipurpose devices, single purpose devices. It’s incredible. Imagine if we’d turned over computer development to the government the way education is. I shutter to think of it.
Another effect of the union is that it is very hard to fire a teacher. Because of that you get teachers who are paid to do nothing all day. Teachers who physically and sometimes sexually abuse children. They are rarely if ever fired. These are well documented, so I won’t document them here.
It’s time to open your eyes. Abolish the government school system.