What unions do today

We had a discussion the other day about unions.  They were useful 100 years ago, in promoting child labor laws and the like.  But what are they up to today?  Here’s an example, from Michelle Malkin’s book, Culture of Corruption:

“But the most glaring example of the Obama culture of corruption, and the clearest evidence that Hope and Change are hazardous to your personal well-being and welfare, can be found in the $60 billion White House payoff to Big Labor in exchange for its support for Obama’s federal health care takeover plan.  In mid-January 2010, the White House convened backdoor meetings with Democratic leaders, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, Service Employees International Union President Andy Stern, and United Auto Workers President Ron Gettlefinger.  Outside the view of C-SPAN cameras, which Obama had so ostentatiously, repeatedly, and falsely promised to install at every health care policy negotiation, the special interest groups cut a deal to exempt union members from a massive 40 percent excise tax on high priced health insurance premiums.

“The excise tax kicks in for everybody else in 2013.  While the law squeezes middle-class taxpayers, employers, investors, and drug makers to subsidize expanded government health care, the Big Labor Cadillac tax exemption gives union members who belong to any health plan that is part of a collective-bargaining agreement immunity until 2018.  State and local government employees who belong to unions will also be spared.  As the Wall Street Journal editorial board put it succinctly:  ‘The 87% of Americans who don’t belong to a union will now foot the bill for a $60 billion giveaway to those who do.’

“And you can bet the union lobbyists will spend the next eight years lobbying to ensure that the ‘temporary’ exemption never ends.”


Arguably, the unions are doing what they are supposed to do — getting the best deal they can for their members.  But it’s certainly not the best deal for America.  And fighting for special tax breaks for union members at the expense of everyone else hardly is far, far removed from fighting for child labor laws, now isn’t it?