Uniting together to form mutual aid groups is a very old idea. Workers do it; professionals, too — even consumers. It’s usually a great idea, contributing a lot to human welfare.
But what we call “labor unions” have a problem: They tend to be, well . . . violent.
One of the main practices of unions has been (though it need not be) the monopolization of labor into a union-run pool, disallowing non-union workers from taking jobs in targeted plants, businesses, industries, what-have-you. Labor legislation in America and elsewhere generally shores up and regulates that power — which, by definition, is thuggish.
So we’ve come to expect thuggishness from existing unions. Members of unions feel they have the right to exclude non-union workers, and they will intimidate, threaten, and attack both “scabs” (competing workers) and “evil businesses.”
Which now includes a Quaker meeting place expansion project.
In one of the best-titled stories of recent times, “Union Workers *Probably* Torched a Quaker Meetinghouse Over Christmas,” we learn that an under-construction building was torched this holiday season, and that the culprits were “almost certainly” union members.
To call them “disgruntled” would be to euphemize. To attack a Quaker meetinghouse takes quite a bit of . . . well, you fill in the blank.
In one sense, unions are doing nothing different than hundreds of other organizations do, seeking special privileges from government. But unions continue to use the basic tactics of force when the “rule of law” fails them.
That they would do so even against another group known for the heritage of peace and non-aggression and even non-retaliation is breathtaking in its . . . honesty?
I’ll let you pick your own word.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.