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One of the reasons for the widening gulf between the income of a corporate executive and the income of the average American is the union-busting that corporations and state governments are allied in. Labor unions raised the standard of living for millions of Americans, though not those of workers in the anti-union states, like Arkansas, that adopted "right to work" laws and other sinister strategies to keep unions out. At one time, big corporations, in the Northern states at least, were somewhat tolerant of the unions that allowed their employees to aspire to home ownership, and college educations for their kids. That tolerance ended in recent years — the Sam M. Walton era, come to think of it — and anti-union activities that used be confined mainly to the South have spread. Indiana recently became the 23rd state to adopt a "right to work" law. Republican legislatures and Republican governors have brought anti-union laws even to such a historically progressive state as Wisconsin. The corporations have convinced some voters that bringing union wages down is better than bringing non-union wages up. How they did it is another subject worthy of study. We commend it to Dean Jones.


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