There's this idea of labor unions as being illegitimate. As if they were some sort of wrench in the works of the free market system. As if they corrupt the process of free markets; a complete disruption of market forces. And nothing can be further from the truth. Unions aren't a disease, destroying free markets. They are part of the very system itself. Labor is a commodity, subject to the supply and demand issues of any other good or service.
And we understand this in terms of professional workers and specialists. Doctors, lawyers, athletes, and movie stars; they can set just about whatever price they want to. Whatever the market can stand. Just like with everything else. Everything is valued at the price that you are able to sell it at. If you can get a two-dollar whore for one dollar; she's not a two-dollar whore. And that's the way it is with everything. Something is only worth what you can charge for it. Which makes a lot more sense than any other valuation system, and even takes into account sentimental value.
And that's the beauty of the free market system. There is little that you can do to stop it. Sure, you can institute regulations to put a cap on certain activities; and that can put a damper on things, to some extent. But even corruption, payola, and graft have their place in the free market system; extra costs of doing business. And oppressive governments like the Soviets and Saddam's Iraq will result in a relatively free-flowing black market; with oppression just adding to the premium cost. A rule which is all too obvious in our own War on Drugs. At best, you can affect how efficient the market is at using it's resources; but you can never stop it.
Even the dreaded environmental regulations play a part into this. If we don't want polluted air and water, then we need to change the rules so they work more efficiently towards that goal. Because efficiency is just determined by what you want to be efficient at. And if it means rewarding non-polluters by punishing their polluting competitors so be it. There's nothing wrong with putting a price tag on pollution.
And this applies equally to labor unions. They're not some foreign presence screwing everything up. It's just a form of corporation. And just as a single-owner business or a partnership can't compete with the vast resources of a large corporation; organized labor has far more strength than the individual workers within. And nobody sees anything anti-competitive or divisive about a corporation of investors forming for business purposes (well, some Naderites have a problem with corporations, but that's a separate issue). Nor is there anything wrong when laborers do that. It's just a natural application of supply and demand. Perhaps it's ironic that the people who most defend Microsoft's monopoly are equally likely to denounce labor monopolies.
And our main problem in this is that Big Business has done such a good job in portraying its interests as being America's Interests. But that's simply not the case. In fact, oftentimes Big Business is just plain wrong about what is best for America; with its cheapskate attitude towards employee compensation. But without a doubt, it's better for the economy if people have more money in their pockets and more time on their hands. That's just a fact, but short-term thinking by greedy men continues to fight against that trend.
Damn! It's too late and I don't feel like finishing this post. And I hadn't even gotten to the good part, where I explain why true conservatives (the economic variety) are just soulless leeches, always pushing to suck at the teat of modern society, without paying the proper dues. How they want healthy, well-educated people for their businesses, but they don't want to pay the government for producing these people. How they want good roads, and strong banks, and a robust economy; but don't want to do the things necessary to get these for us. This is really the difference between a first-world and third-world nation; and these people want the first-world treatment at third-world prices.
It's impossible to imagine how our society could possibly work without all the government spending. We just couldn't do it. And yet influential freaks like Grover Norquist actually oppose public schools and oppose almost all taxation. Insanity. They see all the benefits of society as if they came by magic. As if they came from God himself. But they didn't. And they didn't come from free enterprise either, or the private markets. They came because of the collective efforts of millions and millions of Americans, and for the betterment of millions and millions of Americans. Because that's what society is about: working together to form something better than what can be done individually.
It's not about looking out for number one, or trying to find the immediate bottom-line. It's about everyone working together, to benefit everyone. And while things aren't finished yet, we've come a long way to achieving that goal. And libertarian conservatives like Norquist wrongly believe that we can go back to the olden days of laissez-faire markets and deregulation, and somehow magically retain all the gains we've made. But it's just a simple-minded fantasy for simple-minded people. Because the gains we've made were legitimate; made legitimate by our democratic process. The People forming together, to enact the kind of America that we want to see. And we just need to remind people how this works, and not allow them to believe in Norquist's fantasies.
Anyway, I really just don't feel up to finishing this post now, and I know I won't finish it later. So you'll just have to fill-in the details on what I was saying. This was good enough, I guess; though I already see a few areas that need rewriting. Oh well, they can't all be masterpieces, can they?