Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Supporting American Workers is Un-American

editorial by Irwin Kram, Senior Fellow at the Factual American Research Trust (FART)

A fight for American values is taking place in Wisconsin. Gov. Scott Walker is valiantly working to dismantle his state's unions while an unruly mob of arugula-latte sipping elitists are trying to stop him. A hundred years ago this was a nation of workers. The economy was so good, there were more children in the workforce than in school. There were just that many jobs! Then the unions ruined everything. As long as unions insist that workers get paid a living wage in actual money, of course the jobs will go to China, where you can buy a day's labor with a bowl of noodles. Those should be American workers getting paid in noodles!

Sure, it would be great to pay all workers a living wage, but the money for that just doesn't exist. Theoretically it could, since in the past twenty years, US GDP has grown at an average 2.6% and the population has only grown at 1.09%. However, you have to factor in CEO pay, which rose nearly 300% over the same period (see chart below). And with good reason! Today's CEO's are technologically superior to the obsolete CEOs of the past. Reducing their compensation or (God forbid!) increasing their taxes are ideas so radical, they cannot even be discussed.

The real solution to balancing our budgets and creating jobs is to return to the values of our founding fathers, who recognized that paying workers at all is un-American. They built this nation by the labor of a vast, unpaid workforce. As long as there was no pay, there were plenty of jobs to go around. Until 1862, African-Americans enjoyed a 100% employment rate. Talk about affirmative action!

Unions threaten America, not necessarily with a redistribution of wealth, but at least with a socialist redistribution of dignity. Unions insidiously demand dignity, not just for those whom God has selected for wealth and power, but dignity for every worker and every American. That is the essence of liberal elitism, and it must be stopped.

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