September 3, 2012

"A Reverse Wisconsin."

"In Michigan, unions try to enshrine union power in the constitution."

ADDED: Excerpt:

The proposed amendment text would make the "rights" to organize and bargain collectively a constitutional guarantee, and any state law that would "abridge, impair or limit" collective bargaining would be repealed. Last Monday, the Michigan court of appeals ruled that the measure could appear on the ballot, and the state Supreme Court heard arguments on the case Thursday....

The ballot measure is being pushed by a Who's Who of national unions, including the Teamsters, United Auto Workers and the American Federation of Teachers. Collective bargaining is already legal in Michigan, but the union goal is to block reforms of the kind that passed last year in Wisconsin. Taxpayers would be put at a permanent political disadvantage, regardless of future economic conditions.

70 comments:

Tim said...

So, the unions aren't satisfied with destroying Detroit; they want to destroy the entire state.

Well, if they get what they want, they'll richly deserve the mass impoverishment that most surely will follow.

Petunia said...

Wow, if the Michigan voters are stupid enough to vote this in, they deserve everything they get.

Unknown said...

The great thing about a federal system is that each state can be a laboratory for testing ideas of governance and experimental results therefrom can be noted by the others.

edutcher said...

MI elected a Republican governor and changed the legislature from Demo to Republican in '10 and is considered in play this year.

This may be a harder sell than they think.

edutcher said...

MI elected a Republican governor and changed the legislature from Demo to Republican in '10 and is considered in play this year.

This may be a harder sell than they think.

mccullough said...

Michigan is the only state whose population went down between 2000 and 2010.

Lem said...

A reverse Wisconsin mean More for Wisconsin.

That's good for businesses that plan long term.. They will know were Michigan is at and plan accordingly.

It will take the guess work out of it.

tiger said...

This idiotic scheme ranks right up with Pelosi's stated desire to have Obamacare made 'un-repealable'.

Methadras said...

If you are a Wisconsinite you should be afraid of this.

Kevin said...

As a Michigan resident, I'm actually pretty surprised how asleep at the wheel opponents of this are. You aren't seeing a lot of ads (yet) attacking the issue. The promos being cut by supporters are slick personal vignettes focused on things such as job safety, class sizes, and supplies, rather than such things as compensation.

While we did indeed elect Snyder and a GOP house, people did it out of simply being fed up with the disastarous Granholm years. So while it might be a tougher sell than it would have been 6 years ago, opponents of the law really need to shape up or it could pass.

I Callahan said...

Wow, if the Michigan voters are stupid enough to vote this in, they deserve everything they get

As a Michigan resident, I can only tell you this. They will vote this in. See, here in MI, it is still 1955, everyone should have a factory job fresh out of high school, and the big 3 rule the roost.

According to a number of people I've spoken with about this (including my brother), free trade caused this mess; if cars couldn't be imported (or built elsewhere), then the big 3 would still be running the world.

The other people I know are either cops or firemen; they also believe that they were "promised" these wages and benefits, and they've already "given back", and they shouldn't have to see any more cuts (despite the fact that wages are down, property taxes are down because of depressed housing prices, etc.).

We're going to be added to the list with California and Illinois; our governor is a complete RINO who you'd think was taking away all workers' rights if you listen to the people I referenced in the last paragraph.

I live outside Detroit, and the suburbs here are nice places to live, but the people are out of touch. And I can't get through no matter how many facts or how much logic I point out.

I Callahan said...

This may be a harder sell than they think.

Not necessarily. According to polls, this will win 70-30.

While we did indeed elect Snyder and a GOP house, people did it out of simply being fed up with the disastrous Granholm years.

Yup. It seems that many pro-auto union Michigan voters seemed to think that they could have their cake and eat it too. The fact is that Snyder isn't doing 1/10th of what Scott Walker did, but you'd think he's the second coming of the third reich the way people are squealing here.

Alex said...

The great thing about America is it consists of 50 laboratories of democracy. Let a few of them be utter failures(CA, MI, NY, IL) to show the example of what NOT to do for the other 46.

Scott said...

Geez, it sucks when Mrs. Meade links to a WSJ article on the other side of the paywall.

kentuckyliz said...

The South thanks you.

I just read Chase's economic outlook report for Kentucky today, and we didn't have it as hard as the rest of the country, and our real estate bubble was not much of a bubble at all. Steady as she goes. We are still disproportionately a manufacturing state, primarily automotive. Camrys, Escapes, Corvettes. We have lots of auto related feeder companies up and down the I 65 & 75 corridors.

So I am delighted that MI wants to do that. It's good for us.

YoungHegelian said...

It really is a sad day for America when a state full of our fellow citizens think that all it'll take to get themselves back to their manufacturing salad days is the addition of a few words to the state constitution.

Just how economically addle-brained does one have to be to believe that?

By the way, I read the article by googling "reverse Wisconsin". The article shows up in the links and you can click through to read it. Unfortunately, when I try and paste the link it goes behind the paywall.

whoresoftheinternet said...

Congrats to Michigan for demonstrating to the world that you can take the black man out of Africa, but you can't take the Africa out of the black man.

kentuckyliz said...

It's a free marketer's Cloward Piven strategy. Go so extreme that it gets run into the ground.

bagoh20 said...

In 10 years, Wisconsin can buy Michigan for 10 cents on the dollar and then sell it to China. That will get them jobs back.

Alex said...

Do we have any historical precedent for a state being run completely into the ground and recovering like a phoenix rising from the ashes?

Seven Machos said...

All this will do is make it harder if not impossible for Michigan to make the changes necessary to transform its economy from its current dilapidated state. It's not like businesses are going to stick around.

But it's not a big deal. If anything, it helps. It gives industry an excuse to leave.

Alex said...

What's the impact of turning all of Michigan into Detroit? One giant state overrun by criminals, a no-go zone?

bagoh20 said...

Thank you Michigan. Since we're all being graded on a curve, California loves you.

gadfly said...

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy has been drumming up support for Right-To-Work legislation and the Republicans in the legislature had best get a bill passed before the unionists are allowed to get the camel's nose in the tent.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Unknown,
"The great thing about a federal system is that each state can be a laboratory for testing ideas of governance and experimental results therefrom can be noted by the others."

Well, we Californians sacrificed our state to show the rest of the country what will happen, and it doesn't look like many people learned!

John Lynch said...

Do I have to get a subscription to the WSJ to read this?

And can I get some goodies written in the Constitution for me? Like, free gas for life or something?

Carnifex said...

@KyLiz

As a fellow Kentuckian I'd like to remind you that it's not nice to make fun of the Yankee's. They just can't help themselves. Bless their hearts.

Fen said...

Moot. There's no more money. The state will have to declare bankruptcy and then what?

Carnifex said...

I've been on three or four UK sites commenting on our lack of a football team all day so I was pretty worked up when I finally popped into Althouse to recharge my batteries. When I saw the lead post title the very first thing that popped into my head was "Dirty Sanchez" and various other disturbing physical juxtapositions.

Not sure why, but the Fruedian in me says it's not good. The Jungian thought it was funny though.

rcommal said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rcommal said...

Michigan.

Who is truly surprised by this, and why?

rhhardin said...

Don't home schoolers or care providers have to pay union dues in MI? I remember something like that.

Don't compete with unions there. It's a third world economy.

rhhardin said...

The unions don't think it will work out economically, just that it will work for a little longer.

Robert Cook said...

"So, the unions aren't satisfied with destroying Detroit; they want to destroy the entire state."

I see what you did there...you lied.

It was the incompetent and complacent management of the automobile companies who destroyed Detroit, not the unions. It was also the inevitable result for any town or city that develops as a "one-industry" town: when the industry is booming, so does the town; when the industry fails, or leaves the area, the town dies.

I don't know what this attempt in Michigan to "enshrine unions in the state constitution" is about, but I doubt it will help matters much as long as there are no industries located in the vicinity to employ union labor.

edutcher said...

Oh, come on.

Even Cook knows the union leadership was as greedy and a lot more corrupt than "management".

Marshal said...

Petunia said...
Wow, if the Michigan voters are stupid enough to vote this in, they deserve everything they get.


There's an implicit faith here that the feds won't bail out the state. I'm not sure that faith is warranted.

kentuckyliz said...

Michiganders aren't Yankees (to my mind). Yankee to me means New England, the northeast.

Michigan is upper midwest.

I'm from Iowa.

A Big Ten rival.

Let 'em hang themselves.

Go Hawkeyes!

iowantwo said...

To read the WSJ article, paste the title of the article into google search. Click the appropriate link in the results (the one with the WSJ url)

Google struck a deal with lots of content originators and this works quite often for paywall articles.

kentuckyliz said...

I know, it's deceptive for me to have the handle kentuckyliz. I'm English (parents were immigrants), Canadian (born in Toronto and spent my diaper years there--maple leaf red diapers?), Iowan (went to school there THANK GOD and spent my youngest adult years there), Kentuckian (as much as a transplant can be, since 1994), and Murkan (natchillized 1999).

Note that the Internet was invented, er, at least became widespread and available, about a year after I moved to Kentucky. I first had e-mail access in 1995 (CMS Rice Gopher mail on a dummy terminal, green text on a black screen), and I figured it out and taught everyone else how to use it. Then after a year or two we had Eudora e-mail (more user friendly GUI, less handholding). And Windows and Netscape and Yahoo--and I picked kentuckyliz as my yahoo handle. Having a Yahoo e-mail means I'm an Internet old-timer.

Being KENTUCKY liz is a unique identifier in my family about having moved here. My sister and her family still live in Iowa, on a beautiful farm in Paradise Valley (aptly named) in northeast Iowa, near a town on the Mississippi River. I intend to retire there if Lord willing I live long enough. Shall I keep the kentuckyliz moniker if I leave Kentucky?

I can always claim it's about ongoing UK Wildcats basketball fandom.

Pogo said...
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Pogo said...

The trouble with suicide pacts like the Michigan proposal is that the other party can just walk away.


"• 465,659: Net loss of Mich. population since 2001 (he equivalent of the combined populations of Grand Rapids, Warren and Sterling Heights -- the state's 2nd-, 3rd- and 4th-largest cities.)
• 18,000: Net loss of adults with college degrees in 2007
• 12,000: Net loss of school age kids in 2007
• $1.2 billion: Net loss in paychecks in 2007, due to outmigration
• 36,000 more households leaving the state than moving in
• $100 million: Net loss in personal income tax revenue in 2007 alone.
"

Rusty said...

Yes , bob, because nothing screams "freedom" louder than limiting choice.

And yes the UAW did destroy the auto industry.
When the CEO of GM comes out and publicly states that,"GM isn't in the automobile business. GM is in the employess pension business," is when I knew the industry was dead in Detroit.

Paco Wové said...

"The trouble with suicide pacts like the Michigan proposal is that the other party can just walk away."

2032: Michigan's entire tax base comprises one convenience store in Grand Rapids, and its employees.

exhelodrvr1 said...

A related column:

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/09/willie-browns-mea-culpa.php

vet66 said...

Dearborn is the Islamic capitol of Michigan. Who will fill the vacuum created by the financial collapse there? Arguably, Islam is ready and willing to fill the vacuum created by various failures of will and socialism. Sharia law cannot be far behind in it's attempts to establish it's own system of laws in that state. Could happen...

Curious George said...

Lefties belief that you can pull on one end of the rope and the other end won't move.

Pogo said...

In Michigan, freedom's just another word for nothing left to loot.

Seeing Red said...

Fed law would override it if they loosen the laws.

virgil xenophon said...

KYliz (and Carnifex)--Having lived in Louisville for almost 20 yrs (76-94) I must gloat, being a Cards fan--sorry--a little bit--no, I take that back--NOT AT ALL! BWAAHAHAHAhahaha!!! (It also doesn't hurt/help that I'm an LSU grad, so my "hatin' " on the Kats goes double:) )

virgil xenophon said...

PS: KYLiz, I also have a Yahoo e-mail account, further solidifying my internet (as well as my age-68) fossil status, lol)

MadisonMan said...

it's not nice to make fun of the Yankee's.

Of the Yankee's what?

FleetUSA said...

Yet again the liberals are proposing something with explosive potential for unintended consequences.

Another ballot initiative will be required to clean up the mess in 5 years.

I Callahan said...

It was the incompetent and complacent management of the automobile companies who destroyed Detroit, not the unions. It was also the inevitable result for any town or city that develops as a "one-industry" town: when the industry is booming, so does the town; when the industry fails, or leaves the area, the town dies.

Cook, you're partially right, but not completely. You see, the Big 3 was doing well when it made all larger vehicles (with bigger selling margins). With those kinds of profits, they can afford to pay the UAW the pay and benefits it demands.

Then the gas prices went up. The Big 3 was caught completely flat-footed. It could no longer afford to pay the UAW what it wanted.

Point being: if the unions' demands weren't so high, they'd have had the flexibility to design and sell what they want. And the Big 3 were terrified of the UAW. They're both at fault. Blaming it all on the companies' management is simplistic.

I've seen this happen several times since the 70's; it's the same formula each time.

Marshal said...

Robert Cook said...
I see what you did there...you lied.

It was the incompetent and complacent management of the automobile companies who destroyed Detroit, not the unions.


A more reasonable assertion would be that management ruined the companies by acceding to union demands that couldn't be met over the long term, with both sides sharing blame.

But then we've always known Cook isn't reasonable. This is just another of a thousand instances where Cook reveals his interest isn't to honestly evaluate facts honest commentary but rather to defend leftist interest groups.

Then notice that those he disagrees with aren't just wrong, they "lied". We're a week into the 'Republicans lie' theme and Cook's already decided to spend his minute credibility supporting idiotic Democratic Party talking points.

Remember that the next time he claims he doesn't support the Democrats. What a putz.

furious_a said...

RCook: It was the incompetent and complacent management of the automobile companies who destroyed Detroit...

Plenty of blame to share. GM Management opened the cash register and Union leadership reached in for as much as they could. Detroit's former pled guilty to felony obstruction and ssault, tied to his misconduct in office.

I'd be more sympathetic to the UAW if they appeared more concerned with leaving something for the next generation of auto-workers rather than simply cashing out current members and themselves. I'd be more sympathetic to GM if they built better cars.

furious_a said...

"Detroit's former..." mayor, that is.

Peter said...

'edutcher' said, "Even Cook knows the union leadership was as greedy and a lot more corrupt than "management". "

In any case, anyone should recognize that once a company signs a UAW contract, management largely gives up the right to manage. A UAW contract is huge, and within are provisions detailing not only union work rules for any work done within the bargaining unit, but requiring union "consultation" before any work can be moved elsewhere (let alone just closing any plants within the bargaining unit).

The press focuses on each car company's average loaded wage rate for hourly workers, but this just misses the point. Which is, that it is the productivity- and quality-destroying union work rules that kill the company.

It's not just that union labor costs more, but that it's not worth much. Union work rules are not just about pay and benefits, they're about employing as many as possible to do as little as possible with as little accountabilty as possible. (Just try to implement a real quality plan- one that actually works- within union work rules.)

The unions just never quite seem to get it: that the key to high wages is labor that can deliver high quality and high productivity.

One can, of course, fault management for agreeing to this. But to do so, one must assume that management had a real choice, that it could have said "no" to the UAW and survived.

Did it?

Chuck said...

Michigan might just be more like Wisconsin than people think.

Obviously, this ensrhinement of union power in the state constitution is the polar opposite of what the Walker Republicans have done in Wisconsin.

But like the union-forced Wisconsin recalls, this ballot proposal (for which polling has been historically inaccurate and behind the trends) may just be "a bridge too far."

I have a feeling that on the morning after election day, this will have been another monstrous waste of union dues on a political alley-fight.

Darcy said...

I hate these amendment votes. They're typically worded in a way that is confusing to read.

And yes, you should know what you're voting for. Of course. But calling people "stupid" for voting one way or another on these is not quite understanding how deceptive the wording and the ads are.

Anyway, whatevs. Call Michigan stupid and write it off, I guess. Lovely.

Scott said...

Of course everyone here is talking about the UAW, but it strikes me as what this ammendment is really about is collective bargaining for public-sector workers. Truth be told, private-sector unions are dead...they are just still walking around for a while before they fall. Public-sector unions (and their incestuous relationship with the Democratic party) have a somewhat brighter future, as they can tap into the taxpayer (as opposed to consumers, who can simply avoid buying union-made goods) for some time to come.

damikesc said...

PS: KYLiz, I also have a Yahoo e-mail account, further solidifying my internet (as well as my age-68) fossil status, lol)

I was using Prodigy back in, I'd guess, 1991 or so (CVHW24A was my hyper-cool user name, and it's sad that I remember that). I have been online way too long.

I hate these amendment votes. They're typically worded in a way that is confusing to read.

And yes, you should know what you're voting for. Of course. But calling people "stupid" for voting one way or another on these is not quite understanding how deceptive the wording and the ads are.


I agree fully and also feel that lawyers should have NO input on how the Amendment is written for public consumption. Allow an English major to do it.

Hell, they need the work.

Rusty said...

One can, of course, fault management for agreeing to this. But to do so, one must assume that management had a real choice, that it could have said "no" to the UAW and survived.


CAT does it.
One reason it can get away with it is because management is promoted from the shop floor. When UAW goes on strike the difference is made up from management.

Ann Althouse said...

Blech. Sorry about the paywall issue. That's one reason for me not to pay. It blinds me to this problem.

cubanbob said...

Gov. Walker should go to MI soliciting business for WI.
At worst he will be helping out a fellow republican governor by waking people up in MI. At best he would be bringing new jobs to the state. A win-win. If Romney and the republicans should win in November they should immediately pass a national right to work act just to keep Michigan from completely going tits up.

ken in sc said...

South Carolina thanks you. Georgia thanks you. Tennessee thanks you. Alabama thanks you. Mississippi thanks you. Now BMW, Bosch, Michelin, Boeing, KIA, Toyota, Nissan, Mercedes, Honda, and the other foreign owned factories throughout the region know where to expand.

BTW,I still use an AOL email address. I hold on to it because it is my actual name.

Browndog said...

Public Act 312 (Protect our Jobs Amendment)

http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/archives/2012/Protect_Our_Jobs_Petition_392140_7.pdf



Rundown/analysis

http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/17297

Notes:

-would overturn approximately 14 exiting laws

-This is the work of SEIU, not UAW


-Michigan Court of Appeals ruled this must be on the ballot, and is being appealed.

-Michigan law states all ballot proposals must be 100 words or less.

(In lieu of the title, I suspect the wording will go something like "Amendment to really, really, really,....really, really, really,....really really....protect your job"), and how can you vote no to that?!



MarkW said...

Of course everyone here is talking about the UAW, but it strikes me as what this ammendment is really about is collective bargaining for public-sector workers.

Yes, Bingo.

The general Michigan-bashing here is a bit out of date. I don't know if this monstrosity will pass or not, but Michigan is actually in better shape that many states as far as public employee pensions go because Michigan moved all employees to 401Ks in the 1990s:

http://articles.businessinsider.com/2011-07-12/politics/29969651_1_pension-reform-unfunded-pension-pension-plan

That change didn't affect teachers, but this one (from just a couple of weeks ago):

http://www.freep.com/article/20120816/NEWS15/308160185/Retired-teachers-will-get-less-Legislature-overhauls-pensions-health-care

Methadras said...

vet66 said...

Dearborn is the Islamic capitol of Michigan. Who will fill the vacuum created by the financial collapse there? Arguably, Islam is ready and willing to fill the vacuum created by various failures of will and socialism. Sharia law cannot be far behind in it's attempts to establish it's own system of laws in that state. Could happen...


Detroit held or holds at one time the largest arab (muslim/non-muslim) population in the US with San Diego being the second largest. For a long time Arabs stayed within Detroit proper and in the 70's started migrating out to places like Dearborn and because there were more christian arabs vs. muslim arabs those cities didn't have quams with letting them open up liquor stores and generating revenues. However, now that muslims have infiltrated and displaced many of the christian arabs, places like Dearborn now cater to these people so much so that they will ask for censorship against christians and the city will comply.

Methadras said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carnifex said...

HAH! You guys boasting about how long you been on the internet...my e-mail address is my name. Just my name. No numbers, no false letters. Just type my name.(it's NOT Rumplstiltskin)

@Virgil

Yeah, you got us this year. Just wait till we get rid of our kragthorpe though. It'll be competitive again.(and *ahem* Who is the NCAABB Champion again? For the 8th time? Who has 3 Championships since the other teams last one?*cough* UK *cough*)