Pierre Tristam's column defending labor unions "Scott Walker's pyrrhic union-busting victory," June 14 was flawed in several ways.
First, there is no contradiction between President Reagan's support of Poland's solidarity and his handling of the air traffic controllers. Solidarity is a trade union. PATCO was a public sector union that was forbidden by law from striking. They chose to ignore the law and paid the price. President Reagan didn't have any beefs with private sector trade and craft unions and neither does Gov. Scott Walker.
More than once Gov. Walker pointed out that his problems lie with public sector employee unions and not private sector unions. As the keeper of the purse strings for the state, which is the public sector's boss, it was his duty to protect the state budget.
Tristam and others to the left are very taken by the fact that monies supporting Gov. Walker came from outside Wisconsin. So what? I can guarantee that all those union supporters who occupied and trashed the state house weren't from Wisconsin either. Does this bother Tristam? In the end it was the voters from inside the state that determined Walker's future, regardless of where advertising money originated. When Wisconsin stopped automatically deducting union dues from paychecks, members of AFSCME voted again, with their feet, as more than half of them left the union. We haven't seen a rush to the exits like that since the Berlin Wall came down.
Mr. Tristam is quick to credit labor unions for the success of great companies like GM and U.S. Steel, but he ignores organized labor's part in pushing these industrial icons into insolvency. While calling out the likes of Walmart, Target, et al as examples of non-union employers who "build nothing," he conveniently ignores the major auto companies making thousands of cars every day without being unionized. Obviously, the correlation between unionization and success lies mainly in Tristam's own mind.
Finally, let me say that there is no "right" to unionize. Our Founders made it clear that our rights issue from our "Creator" and not from government. What government grants are not rights, but privileges, and privileges bestowed by government can also be nullified by government.
Gov. Scott for the taxpayers
Did someone change the reasons Gov. Scott Walker won his fight to stay in office in Wisconsin or did Mr. Tristam decide to make up his own reasons because it makes for better news copy.
Gov. Walker went to bat for the taxpayers of his state. There was no mention of union busting in the private sector. The governor along with a majority of his state sent a message that there is no place in the public sector for unions.
There is a choice to be made when you are looking to work in taxpayer funded government jobs and like any other market if you don't like the pay or the conditions then look elsewhere.
You have that choice. Go and work at a union job in the private sector if you think that's best for you, don't expect the tax payers to bare the brunt in a civil service job.
Teachers, cops, fireman are great people. They supply services we all need. They deserve good compensation for what they do but keep in mind the private sector, us the taxpayers, have to be able to pay and meet that demand.
There is no product here we can raise the price of to compensate for the demands of this work force. It has to come out of public dole. Unions don't want to hear there is know money, they think retiring on half salary after 20 years is OK, but its not.
Some one has to pay the piper, unfortunately most coffers are dry.