Monday, September 7, 2009

Labor Day Musings

This will be even more disjointed and rambling than my usual offerings because I am simply rattling individual thoughts off the top of my head. I've done this once before and I will likely do it again in the future. So hold on for the ride.

Labor Day is intended to celebrate the contributions of working men and women, and labor unions, to the American economy. Yet our government does nothing to defend many of worker's rights from corporations on a national level. Taft-Hartley still allows the government to assist employers in busting unions. Congress won't pass the EFCA. States are immensely inconsistent in the protections they give to the rights of employees. Yet the federal government has explicitly given credence to the ridiculous joke of corporate person-hood, entitling business entities with the sovereign rights of individual citizens. Why do we go through the fiction of the holiday?

Our workplaces increasingly exhibit more and more common qualities with our schools and prisons (whose resemblance to each other is already frightening) and yet it is 'libertarian' to support corporations over actual human workers?

What cuts into corporate profits more, do you think? The total wages of factory employees making eight dollars an hour or the total wages of executive officers making six and seven figures before bonuses? Why is it always the former who get laid off when times are hard?

I'm entirely aware of all the arguments against forcing people to join unions and they are all great... BUT... who is going to represent that employee's interests and advocate for them against a bureaucratic corporate establishment if they have no union to do so and to ensure proper due process is followed?

Why don't they call 'right to work' something along the lines of 'right to work for minimum wage' or call 'at will employees' something more along the lines of 'disposable?' Are they worried that honesty might not be the best policy?

Anyone else have any musings?

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