"Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm Makes the Case for Right to Work Laws"

"Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm Makes the Case for Right to Work Laws"

Matt Mayer of the Buckeye Institute debunks the long-term economic growth without Right To Work freedom is sustainable. Mayer uses a Columbus Dispatch reporter Joe Hatlett column that featured Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to expose the fact that corporate welfare and reduced regulations ignore the “proverbial elephant in the room weighing down” compulsory union states like Indiana, Ohio, Illinois,, and Michigan. From Matt Mayer’s post: “With Michigan bleeding jobs and tax revenues, Granholm said she followed the corporate playbook in her attempt to close a huge state budget deficit and make Michigan more competitive. ‘In listening to the business community, I cut takes [sic] 99 times, and I ended shrinking government more than any state in the nation. In my two terms, I cut more by far than any state in the nation. And yet, we still have the highest unemployment rate. There was no correlation.’ Granholm conceded that streamlining business regulations and lowering taxes — Kasich’s economic recovery mantra — are helpful, but they aren’t a panacea…[l]abor costs, help with start-up costs and proximity to markets are other factors.” Hallett and Governor Granholm fail to mention why streamlining regulations and lowering taxes aren’t helping the northern states (located within 50 percent of the U.S. population and with low start-up costs) compete against the southern and western states. Instead, Hallett ignores the obvious answer and pleads for an end to corporate pork (with which we enthusiastically agree). The reason Michigan and Ohio can’t compete is that the southern and western states already have fewer regulations and lower taxes, so “catching up” with those states still leaves the proverbial elephant in the room weighing down the northern states. Plus, those states are also pushing for lower taxes and fewer regulations, so the northern states are perpetually behind them. The elephant, which Governor Granholm does hint at, is labor costs, or, more specifically, unionized labor costs (see: General Motors and the United Auto Workers). As I noted in Six Principles for Fixing Ohio, “Of course, tax and regulatory burdens also impact a state’s economy. Although many of the forced unionization states have heavy tax burdens and many of the worker freedom states have light tax burdens, some heavily taxed worker freedom states (Idaho, Nevada, and Utah) had the strongest sustained job growth from 1990 to today. Similarly, a few moderately taxed forced unionization states still had weak job growth (Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri). The combination of both a heavy tax burden and forced unionization is deadly when it comes to job growth, as 11 of the 15 worst performing states are ranked in the top 20 for high tax burdens.” If Ohio and the other states from Missouri to Maine want to truly compete with Texas, Georgia, and South Carolina, then those states need to enact laws that protect the rights of workers not to join a labor union to get a job.

Could a Wisconsin-style union backlash happen in Maryland? It should

Could a Wisconsin-style union backlash happen in Maryland? It should

Government employee union woes are being felt from California to Maryland.  George W. Liebmann, executive director of the Calvert Institute for Policy Research Inc., lists several problems in Maryland in his Baltimore Sun op-ed: Marylanders need instruction in how entrenched the state's teachers' unions are: 1. Eleven counties, including all the more populous ones, allow unions to collect "agency fees" from nonmembers, generating huge war chests. While in theory such fees are not supposed to be used for political purposes, a famous [NRTW] lawsuit in Washington state revealed that nearly 80 percent of "agency fees" are in fact so used. 2. The State Board of Education has only qualified authority over teacher certification. A special board, eight of whose 24 members are named by unions and six of whom are from teachers' colleges, can only be over-ridden by a three-fourths vote of the State Board. 3. Under a law signed by Gov. Martin O'Malley last year, another special board, two of whose five members are named by unions, has the last word in resolving impasses in school labor negotiations. 4. Local union contracts impose maximums on the length of the school year, limitations originally derived from the needs of agricultural societies 5. Maryland's charter school law is one of the few that binds charter school teachers to union contracts, and it provides few checks against refusal of applications by self-protective county boards.  Experimentation with "virtual schools" and distance learning is limited by a law binding employees to union contracts. 8. Contracts severely limit teacher attendance at PTA meetings, in some counties to two hours per year; and at post-school meetings, frequently to one hour a month. Evaluations and observations are severely limited; only a handful of teachers are ever found to be incompetent. 9. In all but three counties, third-party arbitrators, rather than the local board of education, are given the last word in grievance proceedings. There is a three-to-five step grievance procedure, making discipline of tenured teachers all but impossible. Out of a tenured force of more than 5,600, no more than two Baltimore City teachers were fired for cause, per year, between 1984 and 1990.

It's a Trend – Big Labor Government Monopoly is Big Trouble

The liberal media in the Northeast is dominated by The New York Times, The Boston Globe and the Washington Post.  In a period of two weeks, all three have published articles critical of big labor's power and influence over the political process.  The latest is a Washington Post editorial bemoaning the power and influence of the teacher's unions in Montgomery, Maryland.  Fact is the article could be written in most counties in the United States but it's progress, none the less.  If they really wanted reform, they would endorse a National Right to Work law. In Montgomery County, teachers union has a grip on politics Wednesday, July 7, 2010 IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY, candidates for public office who have received the teachers union's endorsement ahead of this fall's Democratic primaries must feel as if they've won the lottery. The union, with the help of highly unusual cash "contributions" from some of its anointed candidates, sends out glossy, targeted mailings on their behalf. It places advertisements and yard signs. And it distributes thousands of its "Apple Ballots," listing endorsed candidates, to voters at polling stations on Election Day. Now the teachers union, known as the Montgomery County Education Association, is going a step further: It's organizing a poll and inviting its favorite candidates to append their own questions. If the trend continues, union-backed office-seekers won't have to bother campaigning at all, or even leaving the house. The MCEA will take care of everything.

It's a Trend – Big Labor Government Monopoly is Big Trouble

The liberal media in the Northeast is dominated by The New York Times, The Boston Globe and the Washington Post.  In a period of two weeks, all three have published articles critical of big labor's power and influence over the political process.  The latest is a Washington Post editorial bemoaning the power and influence of the teacher's unions in Montgomery, Maryland.  Fact is the article could be written in most counties in the United States but it's progress, none the less.  If they really wanted reform, they would endorse a National Right to Work law. In Montgomery County, teachers union has a grip on politics Wednesday, July 7, 2010 IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY, candidates for public office who have received the teachers union's endorsement ahead of this fall's Democratic primaries must feel as if they've won the lottery. The union, with the help of highly unusual cash "contributions" from some of its anointed candidates, sends out glossy, targeted mailings on their behalf. It places advertisements and yard signs. And it distributes thousands of its "Apple Ballots," listing endorsed candidates, to voters at polling stations on Election Day. Now the teachers union, known as the Montgomery County Education Association, is going a step further: It's organizing a poll and inviting its favorite candidates to append their own questions. If the trend continues, union-backed office-seekers won't have to bother campaigning at all, or even leaving the house. The MCEA will take care of everything.