Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Unions Can't be Blamed for Job Losses

How do the right-to-work cheerleaders explain this? Using the February numbers, five of the 10 states with the biggest growth in unemployment are in the South.
State and percent increase in jobless rate since recession began (with current unemployment rate in parentheses)

1. North Carolina: +6 (10.7% -- 4th highest in country)
2. Oregon: +5.4 (10.8%)
3. Rhode Island: +5.3 (10.5%)
4. Nevada: +4.9 (10.1%)
4. Indiana: +4.9 (9.4%)
4. Florida: +4.9 (9.4%)
7. South Carolina: +4.8 (11% -- 2nd highest in country)
7. Georgia: +4.8 (9.3%)
9. Alabama: +4.7 (8.4%)
10. Michigan: +4.6 (12%)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, via Wall Street Journal
The Institute for Southern Studies says unions can't be blamed for these losses.
One interesting point about those high unemployment numbers in the South: They certainly appear to disprove the argument, put forward by opponents of the Employee Free Choice Act, that unions cause higher unemployment.

The Carolinas -- which have among the lowest union density rates in the country -- have also seen some of the largest growth in joblessness.

This suggests that, as many other studies have found, unemployment rises and falls due to a vast array of changes in the economy -- and can't be pinned on unions.
So much for the idea that right-to-work (for less) laws give states a competitive edge.


K. said...

The people who claim that unions cause higher unemployment are the same ones opposed to a minimum wage. Their idea of a functioning economy is one with wages depressed to $5/hr with no benefits. We've talked about it here before, but this begrudging of a decent standard of living to honest, hard working people is despicable.

abi said...

Denying workers a decent standard of living is not only despicable, as K said, but counter-productive, as Henry Ford figured out decades ago.

JollyRoger said...

The anti-union idiots are generally the same people that think it's just fine for an incompetent CEO to collect millions upon millions in pay and bonuses while asking workers to give up more and more benefits. They were wrong, they ARE wrong, and they're too stupid to invite to the discussion.

Kathy said...

K, you're preaching to the choir! ;-)

Abi, good point. Ford wanted his workers to make enough money to buy his cars. Today, the powers that be want wages driven down to the point where a person can't even support a family.

Jolly, those anti-union people think they're right, which is scary. They lost their souls while they were so busy worshiping money.