Thursday, November 8, 2007

Unions Are No Damn Good, Damnit!

MM links to a Wall Street Journal Commentary about the gov't. tracking your every move by transponder. She's mentioned this before:

States worried about gas tax revenues, for example, are now experimenting with GPS-based road-pricing. At the federal level, we could raise marginal income tax rates or decrease the standard deduction to compensate.
Neither the Divine Ms. McM. nor the author of the WSJ piece (the director of transportation studies at the Reason Foundation) have any worries about transponders in your cars, or cameras taking pictures of your license plates, or any other worries about your personal freedom, which always seems to take second place to someone else's economic freedom. Nope, they're just worried about investor-owned companies being able to profit from formerly public services. Toll roads are a good thing, & even better if we can get rid of those stupid toll takers, who just sit there all day not producing squat, & often stealing.

Let's hope you'll be able to afford police & fire protection in the future, when fire insurance may mean:
"May I see your insurance card please?"
"But my house is burning down!!"
"I'm sorry, I need to see your proof of insurance."
"It's, it's inside somewhere, on fire!!"
"I am sorry, but if you can't prove you're insured with the AllStateFarm Fire Department, there's nothing we can do."
"You motherfucking asshole, you let my house burn down!! I'm going to kill you!!"
"I wouldn't advise that ma'am, this police officer here has already seen my Prudential Police Department insurance card."

Oddly enough, the item wasn't really about what a good thing profit is for those who can make one 'cause they're already well enough off to make investments.

No, it's about those awful unions & how they're nothing but Luddites, standing in the way of everything good & decent.

We should not be prevented from implementing productivity enhancing improvements that make everyone better off, because a handful of people would rather be paid inflated wages to do it by hand.

Then you shouldn't be allowed to make your own freaking yogurt either, should you? Because it's not very efficient, & you're depriving someone of a chance to make a profit. That's not very "moral."

But to me, the central problem with unions, to the extent that there is a problem, is not that they demand higher wages, but that they reflexively oppose productivity enhancing change.
This, & the excerpt above, are about the stupidest & most offensive things I've yet read by Ms. McArdle. When I started typing here, I just expected to make a little mock of glibertarianism, have some fun at someone else's expense (Hey, that's just the way I am) fill my empty days & nights & afternoons. I even thought transcontinental co-blogger brad was being a bit harsh on the world's tallest female econoblogger, but the more I read crap like the above, the less tolerant I become.

These are, after all, human beings, and their jobs! And since Megan & her ilk reduce all of us to our merest economic, statistical existence, is it fair to dismiss humans as "redundant?" How is "everyone better off?" People w/o jobs aren't better off. Of course, w/ their "inflated wages," they must all have enough saved to get a college education & "re-invent themselves" as software engineers, or econobloggers, or whatever the market is rewarding this week.

Those unions, if they are a problem, & their biggest one is: reflexive opposition to productivity enhancing change. How productive is someone out of work, collecting welfare on Megan's taxesunemployment? Seriously, how long until we hear calls for euthanasia for people who've embraced "productivity enhancement" by losing their jobs? After all, it's their bad choices that made them take a job w/ inflated wages that could eventually be done by a robot. They don't deserve to live. With the possible exception of those fit enough to carry the investor class around in sedan chairs once the oil runs out.

1 comment:

ichomobothogogus said...

the firefighters bit reminded me of this old fry&laurie sketch
www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6CkltzGAxY

"they reflexively oppose productivity enhancing change"

of course if the above is a euphemism for "can you all work an extra eight hours a week for fuck all extra pay?" then they're quite right to resist. and anyway, doesn't pressure from unions to increase wages force companies to innovate and increase their productivity and efficiency in other ways? after all if you can employ six year olds to work 18 hours a day for sixpence every three years, why bother to make efficiency savings elsewhere?

and finally, dont libertarians believe that its a moral imperative (as well as unchangeable human nature) for everyone to maximise their wealth? why does megan believe that workers should be exempt from this imperative, and instead be forced to selflessly contribute their time energy and skill to oligarchic legal fictions for no just reward?