12-12-2014 08:04 AM
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  1. NoYankees44's Avatar
    Thanks for the update.

    #3 that you listed above is a concern. I remember a story a union organizer for film operators and stage hands told me about a musical theater he organized. 80% of the stage hands had signed union cards so he petitioned the NLRB for a vote. The night before the vote, the theater told the chorus that they would be setting up their own stage from now on, and since there was a union vote tomorrow, they would now be able to vote in it and if they voted for the union, the theater wouldn't have enough money to pay for a chorus and they would get rid of them. Once this was discovered, it was declared a violation of the Wagner Act.

    Then again, I remember hearing about one of the foreign automakers doing something similar and not getting in trouble for it. I can't remember which foreign automaker it was (Korean maybe? not sure though) They had a quarterly bonus program for the workers which sounded real good. As each quarter went by the company would say how bad sales were and bonuses were canceled or minimal at best. As this progressed, workers started signing UAW cards. When enough finally signed cards for a vote. The company told workers that sales had been great and $2K bonuses were around the corner as long as the union wasn't voted in.

    You did read this? VW’s German Workers Win Raises In Pay Deal - Democratic Underground
    It was pretty stupid to come out and say that they would ax incentives. Granted, VW is not entitled to any incentives. It was still a stupid political move.

    Obviously, any company would rather not have to deal with a union. Even the ones that treat their workers well. It just adds another layer of possible issues. If the workers are satisfied, what else matters?

    I would like to see comparisons with cost of living, taxes, and union fees before I comment on the implications of that article. Compensation is only one factor to consider, and it is the only one that article compares.
    02-11-2014 11:38 AM
  2. NoYankees44's Avatar
    The more I read about worker Council, the more I think it can be a good thing when done right. It adds an informed layer between the company and the workers and does not divide the work force into "white and blue collar". Too bad we cannot legally have them in the states without also having a union.
    02-11-2014 12:04 PM
  3. palandri's Avatar
    The more I read about worker Council, the more I think it can be a good thing when done right. It adds an informed layer between the company and the workers and does not divide the work force into "white and blue collar". Too bad we cannot legally have them in the states without also having a union.
    I am going to find out more about this concept. I've been in France on May Day and have talked to a lot of different workers, but I don't ever remember hearing the term worker council. Maybe they have a different term for it in France, or maybe it's more of a German thing. I think I remember someone talking about a workers management cell. I wore one of my IBEW union shirts at a May Day parade in France and everyone had a hundred and one questions for me about labor unions in the U.S.

    They like Obama in France, but they say he talks left, but votes right (I don't think you think he votes right ) . Don't even think about bring up Bush. They're still steaming from his anti-France campaign over not going into Iraq.
    02-11-2014 02:01 PM
  4. NoYankees44's Avatar
    I am going to find out more about this concept. I've been in France on May Day and have talked to a lot of different workers, but I don't ever remember hearing the term worker council. Maybe they have a different term for it in France, or maybe it's more of a German thing. I think I remember someone talking about a workers management cell. I wore one of my IBEW union shirts at a May Day parade in France and everyone had a hundred and one questions for me about labor unions in the U.S.

    They like Obama in France, but they say he talks left, but votes right (I don't think you think he votes right ) . Don't even think about bring up Bush. They're still steaming from his anti-France campaign over not going into Iraq.
    If what I am reading is correct, it seems to be a feedback/interface council. The members get access to more financial information and get to interface directly with management to discuss concerns and changes. The council does not have the ability to call a strike or barter for compensation and every worker at the facility gets to vote on the members regardless of position or union status.

    And I would be interested to here what their opinion of "right" is.
    02-11-2014 02:30 PM
  5. palandri's Avatar
    If what I am reading is correct, it seems to be a feedback/interface council. The members get access to more financial information and get to interface directly with management to discuss concerns and changes. The council does not have the ability to call a strike or barter for compensation and every worker at the facility gets to vote on the members regardless of position or union status.

    And I would be interested to here what their opinion of "right" is.
    As I've noted several times throughout the 9 pages of your thread here, starting with the Hawthorne Study and what union organizers have told me, feedback and employee involvement are critical to the success of a company.

    The ideology of politics aren't that much different in Europe compared to the U.S. France has a right wing. It's lead by a woman named Marine Le Pen, she's like a Michele Bachmann clone: Marine Le Pen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    02-11-2014 02:50 PM
  6. NoYankees44's Avatar
    As I've noted several times throughout the 9 pages of your thread here, starting with the Hawthorne Study and what union organizers have told me, feedback and employee involvement are critical to the success of a company.

    The ideology of politics aren't that much different in Europe compared to the U.S. France has a right wing. It's lead by a woman named Marine Le Pen, she's like a Michele Bachmann clone: Marine Le Pen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    I never disputed that. I disputed the need of a union in order to effectively accomplish this.
    02-11-2014 03:41 PM
  7. palandri's Avatar
    .... I disputed the need of a union in order to effectively accomplish this.
    Here's a personal observation of mine. I am not trying to offend you in anyway. It's just a personal observation of mine. I have been in the union since 1980, 34 years. I was also in the military. People who have never been in the military have a much harder time understanding or grasping the concept of solidarity, i.e., mutual support within a group. Their thought process is more like yours. There's an emphasis on rugged individualism, each man on their own two feet, rather than solidarity.

    I watched a few shows on the Military and the History channel last week, a couple of them dealt with Iraq. Just hearing a soldier say, 'I got your six", shows solidarity, it means they’re watching your back. You're not on your own, that's solidarity. Another one of the shows dealt with a Marine sniper in Fallujah. He kept saying, I had to take out every target in this 880 yard stretch to protect my Marine corp brothers. Once again, that solidarity. Doing what you have to do to protect the others in your group, that's solidarity.
    02-11-2014 11:53 PM
  8. Mooncatt's Avatar
    The difference between the military and union is the entire military organization from the top down is working to a common goal, and the standard union pits the common worker against the upper management. So the analogy doesn't really fit.
    02-12-2014 12:09 AM
  9. palandri's Avatar
    The difference between the military and union is the entire military organization from the top down is working to a common goal, and the standard union pits the common worker against the upper management. So the analogy doesn't really fit.
    It fits perfectly. You don't understand unions. They are also working for a common goal.
    02-12-2014 12:22 AM
  10. Mooncatt's Avatar
    It fits perfectly. You don't understand unions. They are also working for a common goal.
    Get back to me on that when the military personal on the front lines (aka, the workers) unionize against their commanders (aka, the management).
    02-12-2014 12:37 AM
  11. palandri's Avatar
    Get back to me on that when the military personal on the front lines (aka, the workers) unionize against their commanders (aka, the management).
    That doesn't happen. They're on the same team. There's something called solidarity, which a lot of people have a hard time understanding.
    02-12-2014 12:45 AM
  12. Mooncatt's Avatar
    That doesn't happen. They're on the same team. There's something called solidarity, which a lot of people have a hard time understanding.
    My point exactly, your analogy doesn't fit. Thanks for understanding.
    02-12-2014 12:54 AM
  13. Aquila's Avatar
    I think he means that the commanders are part of the union and in that sense they absolutely do advocate to the owners (us via Congress) based on the team's needs which Congress may not immediately grasp.

    Nexus. Through spacetime.
    02-12-2014 05:06 AM
  14. anon8126715's Avatar
    Get back to me on that when the military personal on the front lines (aka, the workers) unionize against their commanders (aka, the management).
    When you read stories like this, Barclays cuts up to 12,000 jobs after profits fall - Feb. 11, 2014 you have to wonder who the enemy really is....

    In a move that angered union and boardroom representatives alike, Barclays (BCS) said its investment bankers would share a bonus pot of 1.6 billion, up 13% on 2012, receiving 60,000 each on average.
    But feel free to continue to defend their actions. I'd like to see some of you explain these actions to some of the people that were displaced.
    msndrstood and palandri like this.
    02-12-2014 05:39 AM
  15. Mooncatt's Avatar
    I think he means that the commanders are part of the union and in that sense they absolutely do advocate to the owners (us via Congress) based on the team's needs which Congress may not immediately grasp.
    Even that is a stretch. You can also say business managers and workers are on the same team but owned by, and serving, their customers. That still doesn't stop the fact that having a union creates an adversarial tension between workers and upper management.

    When you read stories like this, Barclays cuts up to 12,000 jobs after profits fall - Feb. 11, 2014 you have to wonder who the enemy really is....

    But feel free to continue to defend their actions. I'd like to see some of you explain these actions to some of the people that were displaced.
    The snarky part of me wants to say look how good that union protected those workers. To be more serious, this isn't really a union debate story, as the layoffs happened despite having the union. Then again, an argument could be made that if not for the union, the bank could have more easily cut back wages and/or laid off less workers. While that's not exactly a good thing, it wouldn't be as bad. The problem there is it's like trying to prove a negative because no one can truly see into the future to have known what would happen if they were non-union.

    (Btw, I'm not familiar with how unions work outside the U.S., so what I said may not be 100% applicable)

    Though the article did mention not only were the board members angry, but the new CEO turned down his bonus for the second year. It's not like this was the people on the top taking all those laid off wages for themselves. It reported the reason for the investment bankers getting those bonuses was because of the competitive job market. As cut throat as the banking and investment industry can be, it's not out of the realm of possibility that those bonuses (assuming performance related) were needed to retain and attract better talent. Whether or not they get a return on their money remains to be seen I guess. I'm also curious to know if the workers laid off and those getting higher bonuses were in different divisions of the company (for lack of a better term). Often times companies will shrink and grow different areas based on the needs of said company and customer demands.
    02-12-2014 01:18 PM
  16. NoYankees44's Avatar
    Here's a personal observation of mine. I am not trying to offend you in anyway. It's just a personal observation of mine. I have been in the union since 1980, 34 years. I was also in the military. People who have never been in the military have a much harder time understanding or grasping the concept of solidarity, i.e., mutual support within a group. Their thought process is more like yours. There's an emphasis on rugged individualism, each man on their own two feet, rather than solidarity.

    I watched a few shows on the Military and the History channel last week, a couple of them dealt with Iraq. Just hearing a soldier say, 'I got your six", shows solidarity, it means theyre watching your back. You're not on your own, that's solidarity. Another one of the shows dealt with a Marine sniper in Fallujah. He kept saying, I had to take out every target in this 880 yard stretch to protect my Marine corp brothers. Once again, that solidarity. Doing what you have to do to protect the others in your group, that's solidarity.
    Nothing you are describing requires a union to happen...
    02-12-2014 04:04 PM
  17. palandri's Avatar
    .......That still doesn't stop the fact that having a union creates an adversarial tension between workers and upper management....
    There's no adversarial tension out here between the Electrical Contractors Association and the Electrical Workers Union. Like I've said numerous times, it's all about the numbers. The contractors want to make money and so do the electricians.

    If you go in front of your boss for a review, and he offers you a 25 cent raise, but you think you deserve a 50 cents raise, do you start pounding on the table and screaming at the boss and make threats? Neither do we. You're going to explain to your boss why you deserve a 50 cent raise, maybe you'll finally agree on a 40 cent raise. You've just negotiated.That's the same thing we do. It's all about the numbers.
    02-12-2014 05:19 PM
  18. palandri's Avatar
    Nothing you are describing requires a union to happen...
    Let's drop the word, "union". Let's say your home owners association has an issue with leaking water mains, but the city keeps telling you the water mains are fine and most of the home owners are just over watering their lawn. So what are you going to do? Just leave? That's the solution I've heard you say a few times. Is there a problem with standing together (solidarity) with the other home owner and going to the city and telling them no one is over watering their lawn. It's the water mains leaking and if they don't get them fix the homeowners association will be forced to take legal action.
    02-12-2014 05:39 PM
  19. anon8126715's Avatar
    There's no adversarial tension out here between the Electrical Contractors Association and the Electrical Workers Union. Like I've said numerous times, it's all about the numbers. The contractors want to make money and so do the electricians.

    If you go in front of your boss for a review, and he offers you a 25 cent raise, but you think you deserve a 50 cents raise, do you start pounding on the table and screaming at the boss and make threats? Neither do we. You're going to explain to your boss why you deserve a 50 cent raise, maybe you'll finally agree on a 40 cent raise. You've just negotiated.That's the same thing we do. It's all about the numbers.
    I think the general public has been so brainwashed to hate unions that you're not going to get through to a lot of people. Only when people have actively benefited from a union specifically, then will they understand what it means to be unionized. Otherwise, they aren't going to understand it, and your breath is wasted.
    oz123, palandri and msndrstood like this.
    02-12-2014 05:43 PM
  20. Mooncatt's Avatar
    If you go in front of your boss for a review, and he offers you a 25 cent raise, but you think you deserve a 50 cents raise, do you start pounding on the table and screaming at the boss and make threats? Neither do we. You're going to explain to your boss why you deserve a 50 cent raise, maybe you'll finally agree on a 40 cent raise. You've just negotiated.That's the same thing we do. It's all about the numbers.
    That's between my boss and me, and my individual performance. I'm not being lumped into a group where people more or less deserving than me are also getting the same pay package. Also, there's numerous stories about unions not willing to negotiate and that leading to strikes, work stoppages, and layoffs. What if I'm part of said union but personally I'm willing to work with the company for less than what the union demands so I can keep my job and perhaps help the company get through a rough patch? Even if I had that option to leave the union to do so, the union guys will have it out for me for gong against what they want.
    02-12-2014 06:08 PM
  21. palandri's Avatar
    That's between my boss and me, and my individual performance. I'm not being lumped into a group where people more or less deserving than me are also getting the same pay package.
    That causes conflict because people always find out what others are making. Then you have employees running around telling other people that Joe Smith is making $13.50. I am only making $12.25 and I do twice as much work as Joe Smith. The only reason he's making $13.50 is because he's brown nosing the boss, always telling him how smart he is.

    In my Union we have a standard pay package for electricians. All electrical estimates are are now done with estimating software. We have standards to meet on any part of the job we do. If we don't get work done in the allotted time, we get laid off. There's no time for messing around. You have to work hard for 8 hours to meet the standards.

    Also, there's numerous stories about unions not willing to negotiate and that leading to strikes, work stoppages, and layoffs. What if I'm part of said union but personally I'm willing to work with the company for less than what the union demands so I can keep my job and perhaps help the company get through a rough patch? Even if I had that option to leave the union to do so, the union guys will have it out for me for gong against what they want.
    The union only does what you tell it to do, because you are the union. It's not a separate entity. Everything is done democratically by a vote of the union membership. Maybe you have a problem with things being done democratically.

    I think the general public has been so brainwashed to hate unions that you're not going to get through to a lot of people. Only when people have actively benefited from a union specifically, then will they understand what it means to be unionized. Otherwise, they aren't going to understand it, and your breath is wasted.
    You're spot on with that!
    msndrstood and ffejjj like this.
    02-12-2014 06:41 PM
  22. anon8126715's Avatar
    You're spot on with that!
    What gets me is the people that are to this day benefiting from the things that unions fought for but are still whining about how bad unions are. If you think unions are so bad, go ahead and work 7 days a week without overtime pay, work more than 8 hours a day, enjoy, knock yourself out, but if you enjoy the things that unions fought for, then stop your blubbering!
    ffejjj, palandri and msndrstood like this.
    02-12-2014 07:46 PM
  23. Mooncatt's Avatar
    That causes conflict because people always find out what others are making. Then you have employees running around telling other people that Joe Smith is making $13.50. I am only making $12.25 and I do twice as much work as Joe Smith. The only reason he's making $13.50 is because he's brown nosing the boss, always telling him how smart he is.
    I don't remember, were you one of the people on here defending the ability to talk about wages with co-workers? In either case and if I give you the benefit of the doubt, it's pick your poison. Either everyone be paid the same without taking into account productivity in a union, or deal with gossip that may or may not even be valid in a non-union place.

    The union only does what you tell it to do, because you are the union. It's not a separate entity. Everything is done democratically by a vote of the union membership. Maybe you have a problem with things being done democratically.
    Tyranny of the majority? No thanks.


    What gets me is the people that are to this day benefiting from the things that unions fought for but are still whining about how bad unions are. If you think unions are so bad, go ahead and work 7 days a week without overtime pay, work more than 8 hours a day, enjoy, knock yourself out, but if you enjoy the things that unions fought for, then stop your blubbering!
    I think most everyone here that's been anti-union has agreed that they have done some good and served a purpose in the past, but are against the mega unions of today and how greedy they've become. As an unrealistic hypothetical extreme to demonstrate, let's say today's unions gave us something like employers wanting us to wear GPS tracking 24/7 for some extra wages. That tracking would be a pretty bad invasion of our privacy. Would you still say we shouldn't complain about unions because of what they gave us decades ago? That would just be idiocy. Groups change over time, and by and large, we're debating unions of today, not decades ago.
    02-12-2014 09:25 PM
  24. toober's Avatar
    In my Union we have a standard pay package for electricians. All electrical estimates are are now done with estimating software. We have standards to meet on any part of the job we do. If we don't get work done in the allotted time, we get laid off. There's no time for messing around. You have to work hard for 8 hours to meet the standards.
    What happens if, by some innate talent, I am able to finish my allotted work in 6 hours? Do I keep working to stay busy, even though that means I am producing 25% more than the guy beside me, or do i slack off and force myself to produce at the same rate? If I'm doing 25% more work, I am getting screwed. If I slack off, my employer is getting screwed. Either way, someone is being made to suffer because of my ability. There will always be people that are faster and slower than the average. In the end, you only end up putting shackles on those that would naturally excel.

    The union only does what you tell it to do, because you are the union. It's not a separate entity. Everything is done democratically by a vote of the union membership. Maybe you have a problem with things being done democratically.
    Though this was not directed at me, I will take the opportunity to say that I do, in fact, have a problem with democracy. Democracy on the surface sounds like a good thing. Who wouldn't be against majority rule? Until it is realized that all it takes is 51% to decide it wants to take everything from the other 49%. To paraphrase one of my favorite radio personalities, it's like a sheep and two wolves deciding what's for dinner.
    02-12-2014 10:16 PM
  25. Mooncatt's Avatar
    To paraphrase one of my favorite radio personalities, it's like a sheep and two wolves deciding what's for dinner.
    I've heard that one before, but I can't place it. Good quote though.
    02-12-2014 11:18 PM
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