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The Great Struggle

Here’s a 21st century thought for you … for over a century workers’ unions have fought to shrink the workweek down to 40 (or less).

Now, the great labor struggle is to fight to preserve the 40-hour week from the part-timization of the American workforce.

By the way, is there any better evidence that labor demand curves slope down?

4 Responses to “The Great Struggle”

  1. Harry says:

    By screwing around with every element of what government people thinks is the economy for ninety years or more, is it a surprise that the latest effort at social engineering has failed?

    Union leaders should have been free marketeers, not Marxists, followers of a corrupt philosophy.

  2. chuck martel says:

    The struggle hasn’t been for a forty hour week, it has been for overtime after 8 hours, which the majority of union workers seldom turn down.

    • Harry says:

      Good point, Chuck, but for all of our lives even nonunion workers have been paid at least time and a half for overtime, if they work on the clock. That struggle is over. In the USA. People come here so they can work eighty hours a week or more in freedom .

      Chuck, my comment is not intended to contradict what you wrote.

  3. Harry says:

    Retreading WC’s post, one can appreciate his irony. Remember that the idea of worker exploitation was relatively new when John L. Lewis and Walter Reuther were young men, encouraged by people who read The Daily Worker, which was distributed daily in a pile on the way to my college cafeteria. These ideas live among the people who teach our children , and in the minds of the Yuppie generation, spoiled and selfish, yet generous with giving away other people’s property.

    For fifty years the idea of a short work week has existed in France, and it has been envied by wishful intellectuals. The idea was and is that there is somewhere a fountain of wealth that brings righteous people an easy life at the expense of the mythical rich.

    Decree the minimum wage at, say, $2,000 an hour, and all we, everybody, need to do is to show up for any stupid job for a month or two and we will all prosper, Workers, throw off your chains.

    Now, with PPACA, the day of the 29.5-day workweek, along with the 49-employee company has been solidified. A triumph for overworked people. This is supposed to be good.

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