Thursday, September 22, 2011

"What's An NLRB?"

A recent survey illustrated the importance of the National Labor Relations Board in the minds of the General Public, as follows:

"Do you have a favorable or an unfavorable opinion of the National Labor Relations Board? If you do not have an opinion or have never heard of it, just tell me and we’ll move on."

That's right. 44% of America either have never heard of this 75 year old federal agency or just don't give a _hit. Another 15% don't like the idea. That's nearly 60%. You couldn't do better if you asked 1000 people the time of day.

Which leads me to a thought -- let's do away with the NLRB.

I made this argument in a speech recently in which union officials were present and it goes something like this . . .

1. The NLRB is, well, worthless. No, they are less than worthless. They don't do much except interfere with the free market for labor, and they also interfere with employees rights' to exert economic pressure on their employers, e.g., secondary boycotts, hot cargo agreements, reserved gates, etc. In other words, they stop unions from doing the only thing that works -- shut the damned facility down with a mass of humanity at the entrances and exits. In short, organized labor is powerful not because of the government but in spite of the government -- because they can (in some cases) get employees to withhold services and close facilities.

2. Labor, all of it, is a commodity. Let the market decide what it is worth. Propping up $10 an hour labor to $20 an hour only insures the ultimate failure of the business involved and loss of jobs. In the case of government jobs, it results in people objecting to having to pay for whatever they are getting, or not getting. Hell, some people even leave the country out of frustration.

3. The battle between labor and capital shouldn't be sanitized. It's a battle, after all. Let's get it on! No cops, no federal agencies, no badges. Mano a mano. As long as no one brings a gun to the party, let's take the gloves off and resolve the dispute over who gets what. To insert the NLRB into the mix only delays the inevitable result and makes it a whole lot more expensive.

4. And, dear clients, this is the best of all. You wouldn't have to deal with me, a relentless critizer and bitcher and complainer who always believes the steaming pile in the floor was left there by you.

So, write your Congressman and tell him/her to "End the NLRB." Who knows, as the economy burns to to the ground, the government is going to be looking for agencies to eliminate and my vote is firmly in the court of those who ask, "What's an NLRB?"



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