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Everything posted by Renegade

  1. Er no. Managers have no power to stop the union from asking for anything they want. So try again.
  2. So, what stops the unions from asking for it?
  3. Yes they always have. That you agree that they shouldn't means you should also agree that we should strive toward a situation where the whims of the masses don't infringe on the freedoms of the indiviudal. Instruments such as the Charter, Bill of Rights, Constitutions are a measure in that direction. That many rights are not covered or are sitll subject to the whims of the masses means we still have a long way to go. It should never be a requirement to be palatable to the majority, at least as to rights are concerened. In an Islamic society the majority may consider it unplatable that non-Musliims practice their religion. That they would infringe on the rights of others to conform to what they consider acceptable, doesn't excuse the egreious violation of rights. I would rephrase what you have said to "A system that doesn't intervene isn't the same as a saying that no one is favoured." The difference is, it isn't the system that does the favouring. It is the inherent attributes of the individual which lead to a situation whether they will be favoured or not. That there would be "winners" and "losers" in a non-interventionist system is without doubt. The system should defend the property and safety for all, both those with power and those without power. That the "losers" end up with less property to defend doesn't indicate that the system is biased, any more than winners and loser in a track meet indicate that the track conditions are biased. It wasn't clear to me that as an outcome you wanted. IMV the ability to prosper is a byproduct of maximium freedom, not an independant outcome. Yes it means all of those things with the only limiting factor being other people's equivalent rights. You woudl be free to own weapons if you could do so in a manner which doesn't threaten someone else's right to safety. Unfortunately the nature of weapons, doesn't make that possible. We can discuss all of these freedoms in detail, however they are not real freedoms if a society can override that freedom at will.
  4. I was thinking something more like MagicBall
  5. OK. I understand, however I maintain that fundemental human rights and freedoms shouldn't depend upon the whims of "what plays in Oshawa". It is not the change you should look at to determine favouritism, it is the system as a whole. The starting point is irrelevant. A system which intervenes will necessarily favour one group over the other. The only way to eliminate this favouritism is to create as system which intervenes as little a possible. You state that any change will prosper one group more than another. Of course this is true, but if your end goal is to create a system which favours no one, then those were previously favoured would be negatively impacted by the change. Don't focus on the starting point, focus on the end point. The delta isn't relevant. You seek to codify permissable choices vs non-permitted choices into law far more than I do. It woudl have been nice if it was impossible, but the many laws which restrict choices prove that it is indeed very possible. That the human element is required, doesn't eliminate that IMV the ideal is to remove state intervention from personal choices. OK I agree that it requires a human arbiter to determine in some cases if the state has trangressed, but none of this changes the ideal. Your argument amounts to what the practical obstacles are to implementing the ideal. I agree that there are practical obstacles, however this part of the discussion is moot, since we disagree on the ideal state.
  6. "what plays in Oshawa"??? I don't understand the reference. In any case I get the gist of what you are saying. The fact that so mnay rights are left to the whim of the ruling group, has consistently resulted in injustices. The refusal to recognize gay marriage for so long is but one example. They are only partially. One of the resaons the Charter is an imperfect document is that only some rights are recognized. Further, the Charter permits any right can be overridden by a government. Yes enshrined freedoms are subject to interpretation by humans, simply because there is no other impartial way to do so. We have gone through great lengths to insure the objectivity and impartiality of those interpreting those enshrined freedoms, but can never get away from the fact that the interpreters are human. If anyone has a more objective way to interpret enshrigned rights, I'd love to hear it. A monarchy was an enshrined set of rules which favoured one (small) group. So we have changed the rules for another set of rules which favours a differnent (larger) group. Regardless, it still codefies favouritism into the system. My point is not to change who is favoured, but to eliminate the favouritism. Yes, we have discussed this before. You are in favour of preventing stupid choices even if it infringes on people's freedoms. I am not. The trouble with your position, is you do not explain the criteria of what stupid choices are permissable and which are not. Further what constitues a "stupid choice" is completely subjective. Forced conversion of natives to Christianity, and Residential Schools are some examples, of where the people with force thought there was value in preventing others from making "stupid choices". IMV what it means to be a civilized society is respecting some else's choice no matter who much you disagree with it.
  7. There is a lot of artistic license being used in the interpretation of how the federal government spent the money. 1. A "bailout" is "A rescue from financial difficulties". Even a loan can be considered a bailout if the borrower needs the money. In that sense when a consumer takes a mortage from the bank (assuming he needed the money to finance the house purchase), you can consider that the bank has provided the consumer with a bailout. It is worthwhile to examine if this "bailout" is a "handout". The value of the "handout" can be determined if the federal government overpaid for the mortgages purchased. The specfic value of the handout would not the the aggerate purchase price of the mortgages but rather the DIFFERENCE between the purchase price and the market value of the mortgage. The market value of the mortgage depends upon the risk of the borrower defaulting without addequate assets to secure the loan. Given that value of property has not collapsed and has even increased, the risk of the loan not being repaid is quite small even if the borrower defaults. In essence the federal govenment bought some assets. Did they overpay? There doesn't seem to be enough detail to tell definitively but market indications suggest it is unlikely they overpaid. 2. The insured mortages which were purchased were from CMHC, a federal agency. If they mortgages went into default and couldn't be repaid from the asset sale, it would not be the banks who would be out of pocket, it would be CMHC which would be on the hook to make up the difference. The rules followed for those insured mortgages were the rules that CMHC and federal govt laid out, not the banks. If anyone was bailed out, it was the the federal govt bailing out its own agency in the same way that the US govt bailed out Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. 3. The reason for the "bailout" was not some love of the banks or to increase their profitabiliy. It was to introduce liquitidy into the system by freeing capital for credit. It ended up working and credit and liquidity flowed back into the system. That banks profited from extending credit, should be no surprise. Thats what banks do!!!
  8. BS. There have always been highy paid workers simply because they had skills which were sought after. I can tell you that for most of the most highly-paid jobs, the reason those jobs are highly paid, is not because the employer fears unionization, it is because the employee's skills are hard to replace or the employer fears losing that employee to a competitor. In other threads you have asked for back-up when claims were made. Do you have an proof of your statement? Unions only represent their workers, and not more than that. If they drive up standards it is a side-effect of their primary purpose to act in the best interest of those they represent. They don't do so out of a sense of altruisism. In any case, it is not simply the workers interest which are at stake. It is both shareholders, and consumers. Do unions act in the shareholder's interest? Do they act in the consumer's interest by keeping costs down? dre, I am not disputing that unions drive better conditions for their workers. They do so in the same way as cartels derive better conditions for the supplier. (ie by price collusion and by restricting supply). What I am contentding is that they do it at a cost to other parties, namely the employer and the consumer, who also have rights.
  9. Agreed. No-one is disputing that. Given that they have the same role, and similar responsibilities, the government shouldn't intervene to favour one over the other.
  10. You have not identified which company you are referring to, however the union freely gave consessions to the company. If they expected something in return they should have got it in writing and sued if that was not honoured. Taxpayer money should never have been given to bail out such a company. Even if it had, the government should have got any promises in writing and held the company to those promises. If neither the union nor the government had a binding contract with the company, can you blame the company for acting in its best interest. The company has one role. To act in the best interest of its shareholders. It should care for the workers because it serves its interest to have a well-motivated workforce. If the company is making billions despite not have a satisified workforce, then they are still fulfilling their primary duty to their shareholders. It is not the company's responsibility to ensure the employability of the 45-to-retirement employees. That is their responsibilty and theirs alone.
  11. Yes, we have had similar discussions. The end result is usually a philosophical difference in the importance of individual rights and freedoms relative to wants from the collective. This is something failed to address. If you can ad hoc override human rights and freedoms, in the name of the best interest of the collective, what really stops the rationalization of completely trampling over those rights. While documents like the Charter try and codeify and protect certain rights, there are others which they are silent on. Moreover even the charter can be overriddeen via the notwithstandign clause. I argue that freedoms should be enshrined and protected and should not be able to be overridden by the subjective wishes of the collective. I suppose it depends upon for whom. It is better for some and worse for others. It depends upon what you mean by "allow for". When you protect people from making stupid choices, you are also protecting stupid people. The best way to remediate stupid choices is to allow people to make those choices and suffer the consequences.
  12. No, the free market won't increase "our" standard of living. It will increase the standard of living of the ones who have productive and valuable labour. It will decrease the standard of living of those who are unproductive and provide commodity labour and who's wage rates are simply protected by the bias towards unions. I can see clearly, why you would want a union protected using the force of the state.
  13. I don't see the point you are disputing we me over. I have repeatededly stated that I support the right of employees to unionize. If as you say an employer can form a collective bargining unit, certainly employees can too. The real difference is that for most companies it has not choice, it is forced to negotiate as a collective. (If you disagree, please tell me how it would work in a company the size of GM or Walmart). An employee does and should have a choice, he can negotiate individually or he can appoint a representative on his behalf. Your explanation doesnt' explain why there are so many non-unionized employees earning very high-salary an benefits who have indiviudally negotiated their salary. Surely, by your explaination, an employer can bully them to work for minimium wage. No that is not the only way to balance that situation. The way to balance that situaiton is for employees to make themeselves a valuable commodity. An employee who labour is valuable, has no fear of not being able to contract with one specfic employer as he is confident that he can enter into a contract with another. The rules with favour unions, simply protect labour which are commodities. The one thing I agree with you on is that unions should have similar powers as the company itself. It already does and more. What I argue for is that the company should have equal powers to the union itself. At least Argus is astute enough to acknowledte that unions have been given additional powers over employeers, something you haven't realized or refuse to acknowledge.
  14. With most organizations, whether it be churches, club, fraternity, or whatever, membership is voluntary. Joining the organization is deemed to accept the rules of the orgainization, including how rules are set. With "society" there is not choice. Your mere existance force you into a club which then requires you to follow its rules. If you want a society which respect human rights, it must be one which also respects human freedoms and right to choose. So no, a society is not like any other organization. No. In the example you have given, a rule can also be justified when it prevents behaviour that has the potential to impact another's right and that impact cannot be redressed or remediated after the violation. Building codes would fall into that category. It protects the unknowing building occupant from having his rights violated by having the building collapse on him and causing him harm. The potential harm is so great that it cannot be remediated by punishing the causer of the harm (ie the builder). IMV while it is justified to have a rule in place which create safe buildings which others occupy, a person should be free to create whatever structure he wants to if it can be assured that only he will occupy it. A whole host of rules fall into this category, such as laws to possess firearms. Rules which favour unions are nothing like the building code example you previously gave. "smoothing out the rougher edges" of society is simply a vauge euphemism for saying that a majority can it deems will create a "better" society based upon its own subjective assessment of what constitutes "better". As long as people have power to choose whether to join an employer, or accept a job or not, the employee has power to offset the power employers have. Where employees lack power to choose, it is generally due to circumstances of the employees own creation. For example they may lack the skills or knowledge to take on another job, or may fear the uncertainty of changing jobs. It is the employees resposibilty to make their labour a valuable commodity which exacts an offer of high compensation and a good work environment. If they fail to do so, they should not be protected with rules which artificially raises their compensation at a cost to the freedom of the employer and the consumer. This set of union-favoured rules, far from "leveling the playing field" as many would allege, creats a labour monopoly, leading to many equally abusive labour practices. Picket-line violence is common. So is the lack of motivation to advance through hard work and skill. In many union shops it is close to impossible to get fired. "Society" can try to box in an employer by limiting his choices, but once an employer has a choice "society" shouldn't be surprised when an employer takes the alternative. Thus you witness the massive offshoring and outsourcing which has occured and continues to occur. These set of rules which soceity has set in place to favour unions, have backfired, as companies which can leave, have left, leading to a mass de-unionization of the private sector. The only bastion of unionization left is the public sector. If the wern't held sway to political pressure, they too should be offshoring leading to a more efficient organization. Sure they probably are, but at a cost. It is not just the workers interest which are at stake. It is also others in society which are stakeholders in the production process. What is given to the worker is taken from the shareholder and consumer and frequently the taxpayer.
  15. I commend you Argus for getting to the heart of the matter quickly. Something none of the other pro-union posters seem to be able to do. They seem to deny that there is coercion in society to favour certain groups. What you outline is your view of society. The problem with your view of "whole bunch of people who live together, and who decide in what way they can coexist, and what rules they'll all live by" is that the "whole bunch of people" are not unaamious in their agreement. They generally will force a subset of people to live under their rules of coexistance. Those rules will generally go far beyond coexistance. I can see your argument for rules where the behaviour of one affects the freedoms and rights for another, however when you go beyond that, where exactly does it stop? If 10 people are in a group, and 6 people decide that the "rules for coexistance" mean that everyone should have equal assets, does it affect the rights of the 4 people who's assets will be seized? Most definitely. Ultimately I'm not arguing that rules should not exsist. They most definitely should. But the rules should be constrained by indiviudal rights. Freedom of association and freedom to contract with whomever I choose should be one of the rights. This whole conversation within this thread was brought by a pro-union poster claiming the right of "freedom of association" . If that is indeed a right, that freedom should apply to all, employer and employee.
  16. They should not just be free to lock out employees. They should be free to hire alternate labour if they can agree on terms.
  17. As you acknowlege, "soceity" intervenes to determine the best interests of workers to even override a worker's own choices. IMV, taking away peoples choices doesn't make for a "better" society. What is better for some is worse for others. Union legislation beneits the unskilled labour and commodity labour. It is detrimental to consumers and shareholders. You don't find a logical argument because you have a subjective view of what constitutes a better society. I have a different view. I don't ask to impose my view on you, and I ask that you don't impose yours on me. However that doesn't work in your construct, as in order to impose your view of a "better" society, you MUST use coercion and impose it on others.
  18. Well, as I have consistently said, an employee is free to designate another party to negotiate on his behalf. I have no issue with this. However, an employer should have the option to refuse to negotiate with that party if they so choose. After all, if an employee insist he must negotiate with the shareholders, and the company doesn't provide him access to the shareholders, then the employee is free to not enter into a contract with the company and go find another company where he can netotiate directly with the shareholder (like a sole propritorship). If an employee has the right to refuse to deal with a representative he accepts, why should a company not have the same option? Yes the do, in the same way an employee can determine who he negotiates with or abandon the netotiation. What employeer unions are you taking about? Most shareholders appoint representatives to negotiate on their behalf because it is impractical to do it any other way. In fact there is a cost involved in creating a middle man to negotiate compensation with employees. It is overhead that shareholders woudl avoid if they could. Where an organization is small enough the middle-man is often cut out and the main shareholder negotiates with the employee. The company appoints a representative to negotiate on its behalf because of logistic need. An employee appoints a representative because he believes he will get an ecoomic advantage from it. Both are valid reasons, however the other party should not be forced to deal with the represnative if he doesn't choose to. He has the option of walking away and dealing with another party. Actually I have. I have repeatedly suggested that I support the right of an employee to form a collective, however I believe the same freedoms extended to an employee should be extended to the employer.
  19. So what if the company wants to move out of the country? If the conditions are not to the union's liking, let them move out of the country and let the union members find other employment which offer conditions they are willing to accept. The fact that unions are willing to give up compensation is not because they have some kind of irrational love for the company, it is because they prefer the offered conditions to unemployment Exactly the same things can be said for Unions.
  20. Huh? You are quite wrong. It absolutely is negotiation. You too can set undebatable terms for your employment and set it to Walmart as a "take it or leave it" offer. Every contract is the process of finding terms which are beneficial to both parties. If this cannot be accomplished the only acceptable alternative is for either party to walk away from the deal. Do you expect as a labourer to have the power of the state to hold you to terms of labour you do not agree with? That would be forced labour, not much differnt than slavery. If you don't expect the state power to be used to coercively force contract terms upon you, why should state power be used to coercively force terms upon an employer?
  21. Then you think wrong. Unions should have NO obligation to accept the company position. They can demand whatever they want. But just as a union has no obligation to accept the company offer, the company should have no obligation to accept the union offer. If they can't come to a deal, workers who wish to be represeted by a union, can go find jobs at another company that they can come to terms with, and the company should be able to find and hire workers they can come to terms with.
  22. I really don't see what you are saying. Virtually every private employee has the abilty to negotiate their compensation. I personally have negotiated my own compensation with each and every company I have ever worked for. Ultimately if I and the company cannot come to terms which are agreeable to both, we walk away from the deal. I really don't understand your POV that "one side of the coin get all the rules in their favour". Care to elaborate?
  23. So, according to you it is not possible for a company to be unfairly treated if it is successful? Really? What you seem to be saying is that it is ok to use force on successful entities. Is that right? So what if it is successful? The set of rules and principles which apply to successful entities (or individuals) should be the same set of rules which apply to unsuccessful ones. BTW, in case you didn't notice, the rules wich apply to unionization in organizations which are successful, are the SAME rules which apply to unsuccessful organizations. So your proposition that it is ok to apply restrictions because an entity is successful doesn't hold any water.
  24. So then, your argument is not based upon the principle of the restriction of choice. It is based upon how much sympathy you feel for the person or organizatoin which has its choice restricted? What is your criteria for determining who is in an unsympathetic enough situation that it is ok to restrict their choices?
  25. Yes they made a choice, between available options. The point is they had fewer options available because of legal restrictions. Let's put it this way, everyone - workers, unions, corporations, ALWAYS have choices almost no matter what the circumstance, however force can be used to restrict their choices so the available choices are not very attractive. Even slaves had choices, they could have tried to run away and risked punishment, they could have refused to work and risked the consequences, or they could choose to work under enslavement. The fact that they have SOME choice doesn't excuse the fact that their options were LIMITED due to coercion.
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