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Why We’re Doomed

This one is due to folks on “my side.”

You’ll see much written by folks either for or against unions. Fine. Let’s not go there. But what really does a disservice to serious engagement is the need to use a data point to make a larger point that may not warrant it, and to continue using it as a talking point.

Without naming anyone, there is some discussion about whether so called, “Right to work” states are those with better job growth and stronger economies. At best this requires a good deal of statistical work to untangle, but my thinking here is:

1. The share of private workforce that is unionized today is so small that I think any effects, should they be there, are not going to be easily measurable nor do I think they would be that relevant to begin with.

2. To invoke the goodness of right to work because as an idea it sounds good disturbs me. The notion of right to work that is attractive is that no person should be forced to pay union dues and join a union if they do not wish to. I certainly would prefer that as a rule. But that’s not how some right to work laws work … they go much further than that and enact prohibitions on forming unions at all. That’s not exactly something to celebrate or brag about.

Consider how I might present data knowing that this is actually how those laws are written: States with restrictive labor regulations grow faster and have stronger labor markets than those that don’t.

A lot of what I read gets perilously close to that.

Count me out of that crowd … sadly for some reason I get grouped in with it.

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