-

The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.

-

archive

America’s need for unions

Juan Manuel Segura | Wednesday, March 2, 2011

When discussing the events revolving around the protests occurring in many state capitols such as Wisconsin and Indiana, there is a need for clarification: Unions in their entirety only represent less than one-fourth of the entire United States workforce. What does this mean? It is false when union workers claim that the bills being discussed in State Capitols, which are restricting or even annihilating bargaining rights, are an assault on the rights of workers. It’s in fact a hyperbole! Doing nothing with respect to the “rights” of the few whose salary increases every year without an end in sight despite what is going on in the rest of the economy is an actual assault on the true workforce of our great nation — small businesses, the backbone of America! If people begin to forget this simple fact and put forward instead the agendas of power hungry unions, then our land of opportunism has converted into the land of crybabies clamoring for what they think is rightfully theirs to keep, or as Friedrich von Hayek coins it, the road to serfdom.

I dare say that without unions, living wages would incrementally rise. With more opportunities for private individuals to invest and improve markets previously dominated by labor unions, such as transportation and public education, efficiency would rise and even more opportunities would reveal themselves. To put this in perspective, the fundamental problem Americans face is the lack of having real choice. Parents can’t choose which public school they want to send their kids to, which is why charter schools are catching on in popularity. Why? Because they offer choice and efficiency, something their public school counterparts lack. With our current system we are under the tyranny of monopolies, and that is why we do not need unions.

Juan Manuel Segura

freshman

Fisher Hall

Mar. 1