Monday, September 07, 2009

A Labor Day message to labor unions from the American public... 

Delivered by Gallup:

Labor Unions See Sharp Slide in U.S. Public Support

For first time, fewer than half of Americans approve of labor unions

Gallup finds organized labor taking a significant image hit in the past year ... fewer than half of Americans -- 48%, an all-time low -- approve of labor unions ....

... Gallup records significant increases in ... sentiment that unions have a negative effect on companies where workers are organized ...

There has been an even larger jump in the percentage saying labor unions mostly hurt the U.S. economy, from 36% in 2006 to 51% today. This is the first time since the question was established in 1997 that more Americans have said unions hurt rather than help the economy.

...does this mean Americans would like unions' reach to be expanded or cut back? The answer in this year's survey ...: 42% say they want unions to have less influence in the United States, compared with 25% favoring more influence.
One strives to understand what could have so influenced public opinion about labor unions lately.

Could it be that the public noticed that while there are 14 auto manufacturers building cars in the US, it was only the three organized by the United Auto Workers union that hit the rocks, with two of three sinking beneath the waves?

Or that General Motors got re-floated with $70 billion of taxpayers' money to keep the UAW's biggest subsidiary employer afloat -- without the union's members there receiving even a nominal wage cut?

Or maybe it's how the public school teachers' unions never reform and the situations they create -- so that even liberals as far left as the Village Voice now say it is time to "roll" them?

Who knows?