IRVINE, CA–Commentators bemoaning the recent split of the teamsters and service workers unions from the AFL-CIO, and the continuing disintegration of union power, are profoundly mistaken, stated Dr. Andrew Bernstein, author of “The Capitalist Manifesto” and a senior writer for the Ayn Rand Institute. “That private-sector union membership has declined from 30 percent a half-century ago to less than 8 percent today, and that union power has consequently declined, is an unmitigated good.”

“While it is certainly true that individual workers have the right to voluntarily form unions,” Bernstein said, “they do not have the moral right to use the coercive power of the state to force their demands on others.” Union power for the past 100 years, Bernstein pointed out, has been coercive–“and as such, it is both immoral and impractical.”

“Government-backed unions coerce employers to negotiate with them, restrict non-union workers from being hired, mandate arbitrary make-work schemes and featherbedding practices–and, at times, have assaulted and even murdered workers independent enough to cross picket lines during strikes.” All such policies, Bernstein noted, violate the rights of employers and other workers.

“The result of coercive union practices is a perverse war against productiveness, which leads to diminished supply, higher prices and lower real wages.” Bernstein concluded that workers–as well as everyone else–will benefit immensely from the disintegration of unions’ coercive government power.

From  Cox and Forkum:

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