California workers unite...or else we'll unite you by force

Private union membership has been in decline for decades.  And over the last few years, major court victories allowing workers to opt out of obligatory union dues have made the workplace less amenable to union organization.  The exception has been public employee union membership, which has had a near-lock on the workplace and has been on an upward tear by increasing its rolls practically every year.  The chart below looks like a giant letter X  as the blue line (increasing) represents public membership and the black line (decreasing) is private.


Source.

This is one of the most egregious burdens perpetrated on American taxpayers, who have no advocate to speak on their behalf.  The Democratic Party is just fine with this, since public unions provide endless cash to help get them elected, but also the members make up their primary voting base.  In turn, once elected, Democrats return the favor with greater largesse to public employees with higher wages, more time off, greater health and retirement benefits, and more regulations that fall in their favor.  It's often nearly impossible to fire a public employee, for instance.  Once they become institutionalized, they are, with few exceptions, permanently deposited into the bureaucracy.

If that weren't bad enough, what do California Democrats do?  They complain about the decline in private union membership.  It's not good enough just to own the public employees.  They want to own the entire workforce, both public and private.  And if they can't get private workplaces to willingly adopt the wonders of union membership, instead, they install people like Lorena Gonzalez into the California Assembly.

State representative Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) of the 80th Assembly District came from serving as secretary-treasurer and eventually the CEO of the San Diego's AFL-CIO chapter.  As the saying goes, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.  If you can't convince workers to knuckle under Big Labor's thumb, then get yourself elected so you can cram legislation down onto all workers in the entire state, union or not.  Who needs a union?  Just make politicians your union boss and let them dictate the raft of new pro-labor laws onto every employer, both public and private.  Skip the union.  They're passé anyway.

And, that's exactly what she's done. She has wasted no time as one of the most prolific Assembly persons to help agitate for higher minimum wages (which helps unions far more than workers, since many union contracts add a specified sum to the minimum wage).  And all that the minimum wage has accomplished is to cripple fast food franchises; fast casual dining; and the retail sector, which was already challenged enough with competition from Amazon.  Now Amazon can camp its HQ in a low-cost state right on the border's edge of a high-cost state like California and run in intermodal.

It used to be that if labor wanted something in its favor, their union would agitate via a new contract for more benefits unique to their situation.  Now all that is unnecessary.  Politicians don't need to negotiate.  They just do whatever they want, made all the easier in a one-party state like California.

Lorena Gonzalez was the architect behind 2014's mandated Sick Leave Law, which allowed workers to accrue 24 hours of sick leave, but since that wasn't good enough, now she wants to add another 14 hours to that, for an even 40 hours with A.B. 555.  As it stands, A.B. 555 was tabled, but not for long.

"We knew when we passed the paid sick leave law that three days wouldn't be enough but was a great start," Assemblywoman Gonzalez said. "California was a national leader in establishing earned sick leave for every employee in the State. Now, we need to catch up to other cities and states that have recognized the need for, and have passed, more expansive laws for workers."

Can you say Trojan Horse?

Once these laws are passed, they are rarely repealed.  Once people get used to getting paid to nurse a hangover from the party the night before, it just becomes the cost of doing business in the state, borne by the employer.  The employers, who never have any legislation authored on their behalf because there aren't enough voting units to matter as a group to politicians, are left to suffer — or move out of state.  Meanwhile, California's inflation outpaces other states because it is a giant regulated morass, both costly and unfriendly to employers.

But Lorena Gonzalez is not done.  Her hyperactive need to legislate continues in the most perverse bill of all, A.B. 5, which already passed the Assembly and now rests in the state Senate.  This bill aims to codify independent contractors as mere workers, be they Uber drivers — which, by the way, would destroy Uber entirely in California — or truck-drivers or hairstylists.  Lucky them! They would get access to minimum wage protections! And overtime, and new sick leave.  The only problem? They would no longer be worth keeping as employees and it would kill industries.

When you've been a carpenter your entire life and wield a hammer as an extension of your arm, after a while, everything must look like a nail that needs to be beaten.  When you've been a union boss your whole life before coming into an entirely new endeavor, it may seem like remaking the entire state of California into a Big Labor Union is a good thing. You may even, in your naïveté, celebrate your victories and slap your own back at what a great job you've done 'for the workers' -- until there aren't any workers left.

Why is it that Democrats must always destroy innovation with their authoritarian bent? Uber was and still is a great service and an innovator. Drivers like it.  It has a very efficient algorithm that saves gas.  It is a convenience to many, especially to the elderly who must rely on it, people who can't see well,and saves lives by keeping drunks off the road. Why must it now be crushed by another power mad Sacramento legislator? We don't all need your 'protections' from our employer, Ma'am. Some of us actually like our employers and don't automatically think they are out to screw us over.

But there are a lot of us that know politicians are out to do that very thing as they quite often do. Warning to employers: Get ready to lay off more workers soon or leave the state. Your profits no longer belong to you. All incentives must die to make it fair, once again.

Private union membership has been in decline for decades.  And over the last few years, major court victories allowing workers to opt out of obligatory union dues have made the workplace less amenable to union organization.  The exception has been public employee union membership, which has had a near-lock on the workplace and has been on an upward tear by increasing its rolls practically every year.  The chart below looks like a giant letter X  as the blue line (increasing) represents public membership and the black line (decreasing) is private.


Source.

This is one of the most egregious burdens perpetrated on American taxpayers, who have no advocate to speak on their behalf.  The Democratic Party is just fine with this, since public unions provide endless cash to help get them elected, but also the members make up their primary voting base.  In turn, once elected, Democrats return the favor with greater largesse to public employees with higher wages, more time off, greater health and retirement benefits, and more regulations that fall in their favor.  It's often nearly impossible to fire a public employee, for instance.  Once they become institutionalized, they are, with few exceptions, permanently deposited into the bureaucracy.

If that weren't bad enough, what do California Democrats do?  They complain about the decline in private union membership.  It's not good enough just to own the public employees.  They want to own the entire workforce, both public and private.  And if they can't get private workplaces to willingly adopt the wonders of union membership, instead, they install people like Lorena Gonzalez into the California Assembly.

State representative Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) of the 80th Assembly District came from serving as secretary-treasurer and eventually the CEO of the San Diego's AFL-CIO chapter.  As the saying goes, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.  If you can't convince workers to knuckle under Big Labor's thumb, then get yourself elected so you can cram legislation down onto all workers in the entire state, union or not.  Who needs a union?  Just make politicians your union boss and let them dictate the raft of new pro-labor laws onto every employer, both public and private.  Skip the union.  They're passé anyway.

And, that's exactly what she's done. She has wasted no time as one of the most prolific Assembly persons to help agitate for higher minimum wages (which helps unions far more than workers, since many union contracts add a specified sum to the minimum wage).  And all that the minimum wage has accomplished is to cripple fast food franchises; fast casual dining; and the retail sector, which was already challenged enough with competition from Amazon.  Now Amazon can camp its HQ in a low-cost state right on the border's edge of a high-cost state like California and run in intermodal.

It used to be that if labor wanted something in its favor, their union would agitate via a new contract for more benefits unique to their situation.  Now all that is unnecessary.  Politicians don't need to negotiate.  They just do whatever they want, made all the easier in a one-party state like California.

Lorena Gonzalez was the architect behind 2014's mandated Sick Leave Law, which allowed workers to accrue 24 hours of sick leave, but since that wasn't good enough, now she wants to add another 14 hours to that, for an even 40 hours with A.B. 555.  As it stands, A.B. 555 was tabled, but not for long.

"We knew when we passed the paid sick leave law that three days wouldn't be enough but was a great start," Assemblywoman Gonzalez said. "California was a national leader in establishing earned sick leave for every employee in the State. Now, we need to catch up to other cities and states that have recognized the need for, and have passed, more expansive laws for workers."

Can you say Trojan Horse?

Once these laws are passed, they are rarely repealed.  Once people get used to getting paid to nurse a hangover from the party the night before, it just becomes the cost of doing business in the state, borne by the employer.  The employers, who never have any legislation authored on their behalf because there aren't enough voting units to matter as a group to politicians, are left to suffer — or move out of state.  Meanwhile, California's inflation outpaces other states because it is a giant regulated morass, both costly and unfriendly to employers.

But Lorena Gonzalez is not done.  Her hyperactive need to legislate continues in the most perverse bill of all, A.B. 5, which already passed the Assembly and now rests in the state Senate.  This bill aims to codify independent contractors as mere workers, be they Uber drivers — which, by the way, would destroy Uber entirely in California — or truck-drivers or hairstylists.  Lucky them! They would get access to minimum wage protections! And overtime, and new sick leave.  The only problem? They would no longer be worth keeping as employees and it would kill industries.

When you've been a carpenter your entire life and wield a hammer as an extension of your arm, after a while, everything must look like a nail that needs to be beaten.  When you've been a union boss your whole life before coming into an entirely new endeavor, it may seem like remaking the entire state of California into a Big Labor Union is a good thing. You may even, in your naïveté, celebrate your victories and slap your own back at what a great job you've done 'for the workers' -- until there aren't any workers left.

Why is it that Democrats must always destroy innovation with their authoritarian bent? Uber was and still is a great service and an innovator. Drivers like it.  It has a very efficient algorithm that saves gas.  It is a convenience to many, especially to the elderly who must rely on it, people who can't see well,and saves lives by keeping drunks off the road. Why must it now be crushed by another power mad Sacramento legislator? We don't all need your 'protections' from our employer, Ma'am. Some of us actually like our employers and don't automatically think they are out to screw us over.

But there are a lot of us that know politicians are out to do that very thing as they quite often do. Warning to employers: Get ready to lay off more workers soon or leave the state. Your profits no longer belong to you. All incentives must die to make it fair, once again.