A Brief History of American Unions
A Brief History of American Unions
|2. Skilled workers were organized.
|2. Unskilled workers were organized.
3. High skill
requirements naturally limited
supply and unions tried to reinforce limited
3. Limited skills
make limiting supply
4. Tried to shift supply
of workers to the left
with licensing, apprenticeships, child labor
laws, etc. to increase wages.
4. Controlled supply of
emphasized collective bargaining
to increase wages.
American CEO's Created
In 1955 the AFL and CIO merged
C. How Unions Raise Wages
II. Labor Power
"The downward pressure on compensation is connected to the
rapid erosion of labor-union power. In 2012, unions lost 400,000 members, or 2.7
percent, and their representation in the labor force fell to 9.3 percent, from
9.6 percent in 2011 and more than 25 percent in the 1960s. I
More states are passing right-to-work laws, which allow employees in unionized workplaces to opt out of paying union dues. In the past year, private-employees in right-to- work states earned 9.8 percent less than workers in other states. Manufacturing jobs pay 7.4 percent less in right-to-work states. On the other hand, the number of jobs in such states grew 4.9 percent in the past three years, compared with 3.9 percent in non-right-to-work states.
Municipal governments are under pressure to cut costs. Local tax collection is subdued because of earlier declines in property assessments and taxes, which account for 79 percent of revenue. State tax collections have revived, thanks to increases in corporate and personal income taxes and in sales taxes. Yet many states still face budget problems because of the fading effects of the federal stimulus enacted in 2009, which was used for infrastructure projects and to preserve teachers’ jobs. In addition, the Medicaid costs borne by the states are ballooning, and temporary taxes instituted during the recession are expiring. Vastly underfunded defined-benefit pensions are also fueling state and local government retrenchment." from seekingalpha 4/23/13
Books also help the education process.he Jungle exposure of health violations and unsanitary practices in the early 20th century American meatpacking industry.
The Octopus exposed government corruption
The Bitter Cry of Children exposed the terrible child working conditions. Some tried night school but after working ten hours learning to read was difficult.
See Progressive Era 15 min. video
Unions: Good or Bad? from the Motley Fool
Some Were Against Labor
New York police violently attacking
Some For Labor
Eda Tarbell and other investigative journalists were called Muckrakers. She exposed Standard Oil Trust. Working for McClure Magazine and other monthly magazines they help educated the public from 1890 to 1929 in what is known as the Progressive Era.
U.S. Strikes, Lockouts Remained Near Record Lows in 2010 2/8/11
Is the Supreme Court Killing Unions 7/11/14
Lets Remember What Unions Have Done for America has extensive information and links
What Unions Have Done for America
The middle class was not a gift of the Blue Fairy. Instead of “Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo” there was 150 years of worker working together, mobilizing against their employers — who organized cartels to fight their employees and raise prices for their customers.
It was a long bloody struggle, The victory of unions was
foundational for the growth of America’s middle class. The fall of
the unions was a major factor undermining the middle class.
It had many causes: corruption, greed, stupidity, infiltration by organized crime — and the long successful counter-revolution by corporations, now eroding away the middle class.
For a blow-by-blow of unions rise see this series by Erik Loomis
(Asst Prof of History, U RI).
as that paid by the members of our armed forces
May, 2011 The Rise of the McWorker
History of Union Activities
The Depression Era
Post WW 2
Posts about the conflict between labor and capital: