More Proof Unions Suck Money


If there is a better way to sum up the impact and effect of Unions on their host?  If so, I don’t see it.

But this just about is as close as it gets:

The Wisconsin Department of Administration estimates it could cost the state $8 million to restore the Capitol to its pre-protest condition, Wisconsin media are reporting. The estimate includes $500,000 to remove adhesive from taped posters, $1 million to repair the structure’s exterior and $6.5 million for rebuffing the interior marble.

The Unionista, while not working to protest the state has managed to cost that state $8 million American.  Just for being there.  Forget the cost they have incurred by missing work.

* Spit *

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8 comments
  1. But if Governor Walker would simply strike the provisions that deny unions collective bargaining rights, then they’d agree to the budget cuts. Walker could claim victory in the budget battle. The refusal to accept the unions’ willingness to accept cuts is what is causing the protest — he wants to destroy the union, even when it’s willing to cooperate. The GOP is overreaching, and this will help the Democrats in 2012. It looks like the GOP protects bankers, big business and the wealthy while demonizing teachers, snow plow drivers, and other state workers.

    • pino said:

      if Governor Walker would simply strike the provisions that deny unions collective bargaining rights, then they’d agree to the budget cuts.

      No one believes that the Unions wouldn’t renegotiate them back in.

      The refusal to accept the unions’ willingness to accept cuts is what is causing the protest

      This isn’t true. They were protesting long before they compromised.

      he wants to destroy the union

      Yes.

      The GOP is overreaching, and this will help the Democrats in 2012

      I don’t think so, but maybe. Unions are a massive problem in America and people are beginning to understand that.

      It looks like the GOP protects bankers, big business and the wealthy while demonizing teachers, snow plow drivers, and other state workers.

      I agree that the GOP needs to do a better job at organizing and crafting the message.

  2. Rasmussen’s latest poll has over 60% of Wisconsinites now disapproving of their governor’s actions. Anything he does will likely be temporary, and this assures a very motivated Democratic base in 2012. As I note in my blog, this is much like a reverse tea party — the Democratic base is getting mad. Obama has also started his massive fund raising operation so I doubt the GOP can control the message. I don’t think the Democrats will regain the House in 2012, but if Walker had simply declared a major budgetary victory after the concessions on the budget and not tried to bust the union (anything he does will likely be temporary anyway), he wouldn’t be in such trouble.

    I mean, it’s not like teachers and most state workers get large salaries, they usually earn less than what they would in the private sector with similar jobs. Higher benefits and some job security is meant to make up for that. It’ll be hard to demonize state workers, especially when the GOP is protecting big banks and tax cuts given to the wealthiest Americans in a time of budgetary trouble (while the gap between the wealthiest and poorest Americans grow, with the middle class declining). Of course, the Democrats have also been friendly to big money, but they don’t have that reputation.

    I also don’t see how anyone can say unions are a “massive problem.” The US has the weakest labor unions in the industrialized world. Most unions have been forced to take concessions or disband. When you compare countries with very powerful unions to the US, it’s not clear that our weak unions help. Germany has exceedingly strong unions that even have significant representation on the management boards of companies, and yet Germany’s economy is doing very well right now, better than ours.

  3. pino said:

    Rasmussen’s latest poll has over 60% of Wisconsinites now disapproving of their governor’s actions.

    I agree with you that he’s beginning to slip in the court of public opinion. The Unions have agreed to the take backs but not the loss of collective bargaining. The people of Wisconsin are tired of this mess and are just wanting it over. They feel that a compromise should take place and that the good Govna should give in.

    I hope he won’t. The give backs the Union agreed to will just be negotiated back in next go-round.

    I mean, it’s not like teachers and most state workers get large salaries, they usually earn less than what they would in the private sector with similar jobs.

    Teachers in private schools make less that public school teachers.

    And their compensation IS much higher than private sector workers. Just being able to retire after 20 years i massive. Health care for life. Guaranteed returns on pension.

    Insanity.

    I also don’t see how anyone can say unions are a “massive problem.”

    Scott, the budget mess the states are in can be directly linked to unions.

    When you compare countries with very powerful unions to the US, it’s not clear that our weak unions help.

    Not sure what’cha mean. Are you saying that weak unions help the US build strong economies or that they hinder our economy?

  4. I haven’t seen any proof linking budget problems in unions; in Wisconsin there has been evidence directly to the contrary. Teachers in most parts of the country do not earn high salaries. I’m always really thrilled when I encounter a student who could be a lawyer or succeed in any field because of his or her work ethic and intelligence choose teaching. They are giving up a lot of money to go into that profession. Unfortunately, the low pay means a lot of people who are not the best students choose to go into teaching.

    In my state the average teacher salary is $40,000, and starting salaries are about $26,000. Most public school teachers work significant hours out of class on lesson plans, grading, etc. Even with good benefits, this is a rather low wage for such an important job. I’m not sure where people can retire after 20 years with health care and pensions for life. If there are situations like that (outside perhaps of the military), I doubt they are very widespread. I guess I’ve not seen any evidence suggesting unions are a problem or the state workers are grossly overpaid. My wife is a CPA and after she got her degree she looked into working for the state auditing agency, which required a CPA for that level of work. Her starting pay would have been below $40,000, and her maximum would have been below what she makes now working for a hospital as an assistant controller. So, I guess I’d ask you where you’re getting your information.

    Unions can hinder an economy — Great Britain before Thatcher is an example of that. They can also help — in Germany union partnership with business has been very successful. I think when unions see themselves as opponents of the employers trying to maximize what they get without regard to the reality of the situation, they can do serious harm. When they say “we want to be fair, protecting our interests, but acknowledging others,” that works better. In the latter cases, unions often negotiate pay cuts and benefit cuts if economic realities demand it be done — but they want to make sure management is also cutting back, and not getting huge bonuses and salary increases at the same time. In general strong unions help keep a stronger middle class, and make it harder for those in management to avoid pain while forcing labor to make all the cuts.

  5. Alan Scott said:

    Scott Erb,

    ” Teachers in most parts of the country do not earn high salaries. ”

    I surely wish you would back that up with documentation. For as long as I have been paying property taxes in Pennsylvania, public school teachers have been extremely well paid. I can remember back in the 1980s when the heavy industry job I had was going down the tubes and I took a 40% pay cut to switch careers. The local school board doubled my property taxes. The next contract they tried for concessions and teachers trotted out students saying “please don’t layoff my teacher.” I wanted to puke, I was so angry.

    pino,

    ” The Wisconsin Department of Administration estimates it could cost the state $8 million to restore the Capitol to its pre-protest condition, ”

    I posted a close $7.5 million figure on another blog. A liberal came back and is claiming the figure is only $347,500. We will see.

  6. Henry said:

    $6.5 million for rebuffing the interior marble????

    How can it cost over 6 million dollars to clean and polish the floor? How big is that building? I am guess that there is less than ten acres of floor to clean. That would be about a half million square feet. Does is cost over ten dollars to polish one square foot of marble floor?

    • pino said:

      How can it cost over 6 million dollars to clean and polish the floor?

      Union labor.

      😉

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