Krueger Union Heresy!

As Neil Munro points out, the cases where incoming Obama economist Alan Krueger agrees with Democratic orthodoxy–the cases the Republican National Committee is emphasizing–aren’t as intriguing as the instances where he’s disagreed. My favorite so far is this1992 paper on unionism, which reviews surveys of union and non-union workers and concludes that the decline in union membership between 1977 and 1991 resulted from a “decline in demand for unionization” especially a decline in the percentage of nonunion workers who “would vote for union representation.” And why the decline in demand?

Our brief analysis suggests that nonunion workers are more likely to report being satisfied with their jobs in 1984 and 1992 than in 1977. … Another possibility is that … the services unions provide are no longer perceived as valuable by nonunion workers …. [E.A.]

 Now I’m confused. Ezra Klein assured me it was all due to heavy-handed and illegal tactics by union-busting employers. … P.S.:  Since then, of course, much-publicized private-sector union organizing efforts have reversed this trend. You could probably write the same paper today. …

  • Anonymous

    I recall it being said (somewhere else) that there has been a movement towards using the anti-discrimination statutes over union action. My guess would be that in discrimination suits, the employer is at a disadvantage because they have to prove a negative (that no discrimination as claimed took place) which, from the employee perspective, might be a better/easier situation than a grievance through the union where boths sides can be on a more equal footing. So extensive (and maybe easier) labor and discrimination laws make unions say less useful or cost effective?

  • Edl

    We know what’s good for you better than you do, so shut up.

    • Anonymous

      What’s the senior partner in my group doing posting on this web site?

  • Anonymous

    Let us acknowledge the
    right for all workers to collective bargaining with the limitation that it is a
    right, but should not be a condition of employment. The results of collective
    bargaining are often to the detriment of the workers. The UAW got sweetheart
    deals, and management looking the other way when workers got less and less
    productive. Result? Check out the nearest lot for Hondas, Nissans and Toyotas,
    and check out Detroit’s dismal streets or available manufacturing space here in Fenton, Missouri.


    The public sector is
    much the same in that the negotiators across the table from the unions are as corrupt,
    perhaps even more spineless, then those of the Big Three who gave away the
    store to the UAW. So let us seek legislation that would require public sector
    contracts be put to the vote of the taxpayers, just as the UAW contracts and
    member behavior were put to the vote of the car buyer. Unions’ and management’s
    last best offers go on the ballot for a binding vote by the electorate. And,
    should we feel the politicians charged with representing us have made too
    generous an offer to the unions, we need only look down the ballot to find the
    opportunity to throw them out.

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  • Anonymous

    Is it true that the NLRB just forced through Card Check by executive order? When it comes to the left, Obama especially, elections seem to be like a train, you keep riding until you get to your stop, then you get off. The November elections meant no more to Obama than the Scott Brown election meant when he rammed through Obamacare.

    • http://twitter.com/aemoreira81 Adam Moreira

      No, it is not. Obama has not issued an executive order in 3 months.

      • Anonymous

        “A second case, known as Lamons Gasket Co., involved “card check” elections in which employees sign cards to show their interest in joining a union. In its decision, the board said employees opposed to a union would no longer have the right to immediately challenge an employer’s recognition of a card-check vote. Unions prefer the card-check method to secret-ballot elections.”

        Like I said, who needs democracy what what weight does public opinion have? Obama has become the dictator that the left told us that Bush was. Bush used to actually check with Congress. That is why he was never able to reign in Fannie May, like he wanted.

      • Matt Corbett

        No, it is not. Obama has not issued an executive order in 3 months nor has he done anything but campaign for 6.

        There fixed it for you.

        • Anonymous

          And kill bin Laden and help NATO take down Kaddaffi. 

          There.  Fixed it for you.

          • kuro

            Obama spending billions of dollars of taxpayer money for his war-mongering against Libya was not approved by Congress, thus it was an illegal war.  That’s nice that you’re bragging about it.

            It’ll be fun to see if NATO’s meddling leads to the country becoming an Islamist theocracy, or if it descends into an Irak-style extended civil war.  Hey, as long as BP gets the oil, right?

          • Gloating Rich Guy

            Using Bush info he condemned. There, fixed.

          • Anonymous

            “And kill bin Laden and help NATO take down Kaddaffi.”

            I’m sorry, which gun did Obama use to kill Bin Laden again? 

            When Hussein got captured I don’t remember Libtards running around saying, “Bush captured Sadaam!”

            Sorry, Captain Transparency made a good choice in approving the assault, but he did it from thousands of miles away in a bunker surrounded by people advising him to do it.  The Libtard shortcut of “Obama killed Bin Laden” is pretty hysterical if you think about it. 

  • truebearing

    Is that “heavy-handed and illegal tactics by union-busting employers”, or heavy-handed and illegal tactics by unions busting employers?

    How dare I question Ezra Klein, a man of impercetible veracity?

    What would really make this story fun would be to hear the reaction of some union leaders to this appointment. How amusing it would be to see Chumpka exercising his fat jowls over Obama’s latest move, unedited, of course.

    In a fit of contradiction, Obama appoints an economist who has chronicled the decreasing value of unions, while his NLRB is ramming through rule after rule to put unions on corporatist life support. Is Obama so contemptuous of everyone alive that he doesn’t think we’ll notice these things?