Skip to comments.Unions Make Your Commute Worse
Posted on 09/09/2013 4:07:44 AM PDT by Kaslin
Is economic activity in the US about head to the next level higher? If you think so, please consider a chart from my friend "BC": Weekly real year-over-year growth of bank lending per capita and real final sales per capita.
Growth in Bank Lending Per Capita (Black), Real Final Sales Per Capita (Blue)
My friend BC writes (and I concur) "It seems rather unlikely that private economic activity is poised to accelerate under these conditions."
But what about "public" activity such as a war with Syria?
If you are looking for another reason besides energy Obama wants a war with Syria, there you have it.
In regards to energy, please see ...
Liz and I traveled this past Labor Day weekend. We drove from Crystal Lake, Illinois to a golf resort in Manistee, Michigan.
Traffic was bad in the Chicago area as expected, but exceptionally slow traffic continued all the way through Indiana, and even into Michigan, all along I-94 until we reached Michigan 31.
M-31 breaks off from I-94 roughly at St. Joseph. It was several hours of driving hell starting out, and continued late into the evening, near midnight.
I bring this up because I stumbled on a MarketWatch article Hate your commute now? Just wait 5 years
Here is slide number 5 of 13.
Indianapolis to Chicago, I-65
Labor Day traffic on Interstate 65 from Indianapolis to Chicago is 49% higher than average at its peak. Unless a major transportation project is undertaken in the next five years, commuters will experience this level of congestion on the average day by the year 2033.
I-65 intersects I-94 near Gary Indiana. I-80 and I-90 merge in close by. It is one hell of a congestion. My experience previously was things start getting better near the Indiana-Illinois border.
That didn't happen this Labor Day trip.
Obviously states are strapped for cash, but there were three or four sections of highway under repair in Indiana and a couple more in Michigan.
One of the problems is prevailing wage laws such as Davis-Bacon drive up .cost of repairs. Unions and prevailing wage laws massively drive up construction costs.
Even FDR was against the notion of public unions.
I have discussed Davis-Bacon on many occasions. Inquiring minds interested in a background on the original purpose of the act should read My Thoughts on the Davis-Bacon Act.
"... while the sponsors and supporters of the Act also intended it to disadvantage immigrant workers of other races, these thinly veiled references make it clear that the Act was primarily intended to discriminate against blacks."
The Davis-Bacon Act as amended, requires that each contract over $2,000 to which the United States or the District of Columbia is a party for the construction, alteration, or repair of public buildings or public works shall contain a clause setting forth the minimum wages to be paid to various classes of laborers and mechanics employed under the contract. Under the provisions of the Act, contractors or their subcontractors are to pay workers employed directly upon the site of the work no less than the locally prevailing wages and fringe benefits paid on projects of a similar character. The Davis-Bacon Act directs the Secretary of Labor to determine such local prevailing wage rates.
There are 117 classifications of jobs for which some set of bureaucrats must determine "prevailing wages". Here is a partial list:
ASBE = International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Asbestos Workers
BOIL = International Brotherhood of Boiler Makers, Iron Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers
BRXX = International Union of Bricklayers, and Allied Craftsmen
(bricklayers, cement masons, stone masons, tile, marble and terrazzo workers)
CARP = United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America
ELEC = International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
(electricians, communication systems installers, and other low voltage specialty workers)
ELEV = International Union of Elevator Constructors
ENGI = International Union of Operating Engineers
(operators of various types of power equipment)
IRON = International Association of Bridge, Structural and Ornamental Iron Workers
LABO = Laborers' International Union of North America
PAIN = International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades
(painters, drywall finishers, glaziers, soft floor layers)
PLUM = Operative Plasterers' and Cement Masons' International Association of the United States and Canada
PLAS = United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada
ROOF = United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers and Allied Workers
SHEE = Sheet Metal Workers International Association
TEAM = International Brotherhood of Teamsters
Even FDR Understood the Problem
Public unions get into bed with management and politicians and work out sweet deals for themselves at taxpayer expense. No one looks out for the taxpayer. Even FDR understood the problem.
Message From FDR
Inquiring minds are reading snips from a Letter from FDR Regarding Collective Bargaining of Public Unions written August 16, 1937.
All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management.Time to Scrap Davis-Bacon, End Public Union Collective Bargaining
The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations.
Particularly, I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the functions of any organization of Government employees.
A strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government until their demands are satisfied. Such action, looking toward the paralysis of Government by those who have sworn to support it, is unthinkable and intolerable.
Yes, its all done by union workers, why our taxes keep going up.
Nothing new here. I remember seeing the same sight at “public works” projects when I was riding the street car in the ‘50s.
“Even FDR was against the notion of public unions.”
FDR is the father of WELFARE and control by unelected government officials and we all can see what good that did for our country.
The author’s understanding of D-B is wrong as it has nothing to do with public unions. The unions listed are all private construction trade unions that have contracts for specific classifications of work. Within those contracts, they have specified wage rates to be paid by those construction companies using their skilled workers. The problem with D-B is that the government officials setting the rates required by the law for public projects rarely look beyond the union rate to determine the “prevailing wage”, thus locking the project in at that cost of labor, no matter whether the construction company has workers available that are not subject to the union contract that receive a lower wage. It makes the non-union company a party to a wage rate they had no involvement in setting.
I-94 from Chicago to Kazoo has been congested since 2001.
Remember, when traveling I-94 between Chicago and Detroit (both directions), all vehicles should “cruise left and pass like a bat out of hell on the right”!
Dude! Unfair comparison.
Those are Canadian socialist workers.
Quicker to go to the ferry in Wisconsin. Might be quicker to go through Mackinaw and stay up around Little Travers Bay.
Even non-union households continue to vote for union-backed candidates, particularly if they are “friendly incumbents”.
Ya mean like the way around here you have to wait more than an hour for a bus to arrive, and when it does it is packed to the walls like a sardine can? Because 70% of the transit agency’s budget is going to pay pensions and benes to union drivers who retired at age 52 to sit around and watch Jerry Springer?
The stretch of 94 between Albion and Grass lake is a damn death race that needs at least 3 lanes all the way across the state. The cooper street exit in Jackson is a special treat for the uninitiated.
:: The Cooper street exit in Jackson is a special treat for the uninitiated. ::
More the Cooper Street entrance than the exit that is a treat.
:: a damn death race that needs at least 3 lanes all the way across the state ::
The whole Michigan stretch of 94 is easily compared to “Death Race 2000”.
The Cooper street westbound on ramp is very short and ends in a 70mph concrete coffin at the bottom of a hill.
And MSP sits at the top of the hill just about every day; likley laughing (or, uh, “cuffing the carrot”).