February 23, 2011 at 12:45 am #164780
I’m sure this is a really good response Andrew, but I am not reading it all right now 🙂February 23, 2011 at 12:46 am #164779
As a Clevelander and former Teamster I support your post – Thanks JeffFebruary 23, 2011 at 3:03 am #164778
If you want a union, then start one. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.February 23, 2011 at 4:12 am #164777
I’m not taking anyone to the woodshed. I believe in them more than some of them they believe in themselves. Distractions like unionizing unemployed people to get jobs that pay well, or co-ops that will sprout out of the thin air to share work evenly with anyone who joins, non-profits to give inexperienced people dream jobs on grant money, and waiting for the public to get educated are not going to help anyone.
I’m saying that I have a job despite what I don’t bring to the table. If I have a job, any of these people should have a job. It starts with getting any job and doing what you have to do. I could not get what I wanted for work, but I took what I could get and made the best of it. I know lots of these people have better degrees than mine, better skills than mine, and lots of things better than me.
When they figure out, and they will, that they need to get a job that exists rather than to keep looking for the one that does not, they will eventually advance. I don’t know why people can take discussions of non-profits, unions, and co-ops seriously and then get all bent out of shape when someone suggests to go after existing jobs and bust your butt to move forward.
It does suck out there. Realizing that, you have to work within it. That is not fantasy. Dreaming of unions and ASLA coming to your rescue is the whistling through the graveyard.February 23, 2011 at 4:20 am #164776
Spoken like a true Republican! I’m not going into a political debate, but Government and Private sector need each other. Neither one has all the answers and solutions, both require checks and balance!
If you let “private sector” have its way, you get guys like Bernie Madoof and Bernard Ebbers of WorldCom. Most economists agree the two major things that caused this economy to slide: the Housing fiasco and Wall Street greed. There’s your private sector at work for you, Wall Street firms. You really want them to make up their own rules and run the ship? How did they do and along with the big banks? How did Goldman Sachs pay your bills this past month? Yes, there are roads not created by Government: they’re called toll roads! And if private sector built the post office, stamps would cost triple. You want your electricity to go public too? Remember what Enron did to California in the early 2000s? People were paying $400 to $1,200 a month for electricity, when they should’ve been charged $50 to $200.
I don’t know where you get your data, but I’m not a fool like those investors who followed Madoof. Certain occupations benefit from Union membership. Just not Landscape Architecture.
“No one inivests in a company that doesn’t make a profit. And I have more faith in the private sector. Had the government not created the post office or roads, they would have been created by private companies and probably more efficiently, and at less cost.
No one really argued for Wall Street. The numbers are going that way all on their own by show of American workers. Unions are down, membership is down.”February 23, 2011 at 4:32 am #164775
If you’re willing to move out of your present city and state…then there’s jobs all over the place!! So many American design firms need workers in China or overseas. Go there for 2 or 3 years!
I’ve seen more job ads in ASLA job listing now than I did last year. Things are slowly picking up! Yet, if I was a student…no way I pursue this profession without some sort of specialization, like GIS or Urban Planning.February 23, 2011 at 12:08 pm #164774
I’m going to respectfully disagree with you as well. Here is a great article on the contrast of government unions vs private sector unions.
And you need to give me more data than “most economists agree”. Thats not a strong enough point for me.
You cannot take a good argument and discredit it (spoken like a republican / I don’t know where you get your data), then take a couple of bad examples (Madoff, Ebbers) and make that representative of the whole system. That’s called arguing in bad faith. And its rampant in this thread.
Trace gave me Krugman, I look forward to reading some of his opinions. But can we let go of the straw man arguments? Poor Cara she doesn’t want to be in a union and she got slammed. Its her choice folks, don’t denigrate her for it.
Treat other people the way you want to be treated.February 23, 2011 at 1:39 pm #164773
I am neither pro or anti union. To take Andrews point a bit further–whether we need one or not, I just don’t think it would work in this profession. 3 reasons:
1. Our profession is intrensically rewarding. There will always be more people wanting to do it than there are jobs. In good times this is not as apparant as it is now, but it has always been true as long as I have been around.
2. We may need a union, but I don’t believe we could run one. 3 landscape architects in a room equals about 11 strongly held opposing opinions.
3. There is no large entity (Ford, Walmart, Federal Govt.) to unionize against. Most firms are “small business”–not the ideal model to “organize” against.
From the entries I read on this site, it sounds like there is quite a bit of employee abuse. Maybe we need an enforcable code of ethics concerning basic employment rights. A lot of employers would not demand that unpaid overtime if they knew it could get their licenses pulled….February 23, 2011 at 1:52 pm #164772
One more report:
This one states that Virginia has a ban on collective bargaining agreements. I am pretty sure that public unions are banned in Virginia. And there is a budget surplus. Contrast that with Wisconsin.
Thats a strong indicator that public and private unions do not need each other.February 23, 2011 at 2:41 pm #164771
Umm. As a municipal employee and long time taxpayer in VA I can tell you there is not actually a budget surplus in VA. It is smoke and mirrors and is dependant on stimlus funding for transportation. The current Republican governer seems to have forgotten that.
Virginia is a right to work state and does have very low union participation. It is also limits governers to a single 5 year term. Maybe that’s why things work? IMHO it is an extreme leap to link low union participation to the state finances in VA. What keeps VA humming is Goverment contracters getting government money from the feds and from the sheer volume of Federal workers in the Northern Virginia area. Without that VA=KY.February 23, 2011 at 2:42 pm #164770
Why not jion an engineers union? The engineers at Boeing all belong to one.February 23, 2011 at 4:05 pm #164769
As a lifelong resident in metro Detroit, I appreciate your insightful reply. Detroit is not glitz and glamour but made up of hard working people.February 24, 2011 at 12:09 am #164768
Ryan A. WaggonerParticipant
Wow, being from Detroit I couldn’t agree more. Unions destroyed the entire metro area. I doubt I would ever join a union after seeing how it affected so many families by crippling the auto industry, and putting a choke hold basically on the state. Now in AZ, I see how the unions are trying to take over the education market, and the few teachers that won’t join the unions are being pressured. Unions, like socialism, are a good idea in theory but once they get the power they become way worse than if they weren’t formed in the first place….February 24, 2011 at 3:24 am #164767
I am amazed at the employee abuse stories that I have heard here. Salaried entry level positions seem to be a big part of that.February 24, 2011 at 2:54 pm #164766
I find it so sad that people have bought this propaganda hook, line and sinker. Why is management never blamed for pumping millions into bad ideas and walking away with their share and then coming back and saying…well we had some bad ideas and now have to take it out of your salary.
Some info from Think Progress.com
As David Madland and Karla Walter pointed out, “the middle class is markedly stronger when workers join together in unions.” In fact, the decline in unionization rates over the last forty years has been almost perfectly mirrored by a drop in middle-class incomes. Income inequality in the U.S. is the worst its been since the 1920′s, with nearly 25 percent of the total income in the country going to the richest one percent. The richest 10 percent of Americans control 2/3rds of the country’s net worth.
When unionization rates were high, prosperity was broadly shared, and workers were able to enjoy their fair share of productivity gains. But the overall economy is also stronger when unions are strong: “From 1947 to 1973, the period when unions were strongest and nearly one-third of workers were organized, U.S. economic output nearly tripled in size, growing at an average of 3.8 percent annually.” Since 2001, economic output has been just 2.2 percent annually.
Cross-posted on The Wonk
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