The Instigator
Ron-Paul
Con (against)
Winning
14 Points
The Contender
Viper-King
Pro (for)
Losing
1 Points

Labor Unions

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Ron-Paul
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/8/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,335 times Debate No: 20947
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (4)

 

Ron-Paul

Con

The first round is for acceptance.
Debate Round No. 1
Ron-Paul

Con

Labor unions are determinal for the economy. They increase overall unemployment and increase the prices of regular consumer products.

How do they increase overall unemployment? Simple. A business has revenues and costs. The business uses the revenue to pay off the cost, and the remaining money (if there is any) is profit. Unions forceibly raise wages for employees. This raises the amount of cost they pay, which reduces their profit, and a lot of times forces the company to endure a loss. If the business is incurring a loss, they are forced to either reduce costs or increase revenue. The only ways to reduce costs is to shrink the company, which will inevitably result in the loss of jobs, or to directly reduce the amount of employment, which of course raises unemployment. The only way to increase revenue is to increase the costs of products, which in the long run will not work as the demand curve will shift to the left, resulting in negligable increase in revenue.

"It is simple economics. If labor costs are higher than the market determines they should be, after taking into account all other factors that make up production, then workers will be laid off or their compensation will be decreased. The "greedy capitalists" (derisively called "management" by the unions) aren't the culprits for wage pressure. It is ultimately the consumers of products who are the drivers of wages, not management."[1]

"By restricting the number of eligible workers in an industry, unions essentially decrease the labor supply, shifting the labor supply curve upward. As a result, the existence of unions increases the average wage above the level that would naturally occur in the market. Yet the intersection of the new labor supply and demand curves also occurs at a lower employment level. Thus, there is a higher level of unemployment, as essentially businesses can afford to hire fewer workers at the elevated wage."[2]

"Raises the wages of workers above the market clearing level and creates a situation in which there are more people who want to work at the wage than there are firms who want to hire at the wage. In this way, labor unions increase the wages and benefits of workers who are employed, but may simultaneously increase the number of workers who are unemployed."[3]

"It has been a well-established fact that unions reduce the numbers of employed workers by mandating wages that move in an ever increasing upward spiral. (The average union wage is 28% higher than a non-union wage). In such situations, cash for hiring new workers diminishes as does cash for R&D and capital improvements."[4]

How do they raise consumer prices?

I mentioned this earlier, so I will just use sources.

"Furthermore, those high union-mandated wages result in increased prices for manufactured goods. It has long been an established fact that as labor costs increase, demand for consumer goods diminishes and the pool of consumers shrinks."[4]

"if unions successfully raise the price of labor, employers will purchase less of it. Thus, unions are a major anticompetitive force in labor markets. Their gains come at the expense of consumers, nonunion workers, the jobless, taxpayers, and owners of corporations."[5]

More reasons labor unions are bad:

"How are our guys supposed to compete when the Japanese, Korean, and others don't have to wrangle with greedy, thug union bosses over guaranteed, absurdly high wages, pensions, and health benefits? In Japan, the labor market functions like any other commodity market. That's why their cars are affordable and their companies are profitable."[6]

"Labor unions tend to be inclusive. Those who choose to join the union gain all the benefits, but it may be at the expense of those who aren't members. That can cause strife within a company where certain employees, based on their job duties, are offered membership, while other employees have to work in conditions not quite as favorable. Corporations find that having a labor union within the company is not cost effective. Other employee salaries are kept at minimum wage or there are no health benefits due to the high cost of employing labor union members."[7]

"By raising the price of labour, the wage rate, above the equilibrium price, unemployment rises. This is because it is no longer worthwhile for businesses to employ those laborers whose work is worth less than the minimum wage rate set by the unions. As such, Governments may seek to reduce union powers in order to reduce unemployment."[8]

"One 1951 study found that instead of harming profits, unions increase the wages of about 10–15% of workers by reducing the wages of the remaining 85–90% of workers."[8]

"If unions succeed in wage hikes, and employers raise the prices they charge consumers to maintain their own profit margins, and the supply of money remains the same, then something else has to "give." Either the prices of goods and services in nonunion sectors have to fall and offset the union sector hikes, or people's cash balances need to fall, in terms of their purchasing power."[9]

"The analysis finds small impacts on all outcomes that we examine; estimates for wages are close to zero."[10]

==Final Conclusion==

As shown, unions either raise unemployment or increase prices (depending on the individual business's choice). They increase the costs businesses incur and must resort to these methods in order to return to their normal budget. But they also encourage sloth and laziness by employees. They also are getting rather useless as new federal policies replace their jobs and duties.

==Sources==

[1]:http://www.minyanville.com...
[2]:http://www.ehow.com...
[3]:http://www.sparknotes.com...
[4]:http://stephencabotblog.com...
[5]:http://www.econlib.org...
[6]:http://therightrant.blogspot.com...
[7]:http://www.corporatehx.com...
[8]:http://en.wikipedia.org...
[9]:http://mises.org...
[10]:http://www.economist.com...
Viper-King

Pro

First of all, I am sorry that I won't be able to refute my opponent's case until Round 3. Thess is my own points.

Contention #1: Labor Unions help employees.

First of all, labor unions help employees gain higher wages. "Union members in the United States earn significantly more than non-union workers. Between 2004 and 2007, unionized workers' pay were on average 11.3 percent higher than non-union workers with similar characteristics. This means that, all else equal, American workers that join a union will earn 11.3 percent more—or $2.26 more per hour in 2008 dollars—than their otherwise identical non-union counterparts." Labor unions do help employees regardless and is a supporting factor in the economic security of unionized workers. These labor unions sustain economic security in those workers and help them a lot. THerefore labor unions do help the economy. I'm sorry that this Contention is so short because I've been super-busy.

This is my only argument right now. However, I'll have two new arguments in the following round. Sorry about it folks. Also I disn't forfeit this round. This just wasn't my refutation's round. Thank you.
Debate Round No. 2
Ron-Paul

Con

Since my opponent has not provided any rebuttal to my original arguments, all I am going to argue here is to refute my opponent's arguments and to add a slight extension to my arguments since a few people have commented that my Round 2 argument has too many sources instead of actual arguments.

The Refutation: Labor Unions only help certain employees temporarily (because they will be laid off when the labor union causes the company's demise).

Why does it matter that unionized workers get higher wages originally when in a few years or even sooner, they will be unemployed as the company goes out of business? "Then I had to pay $50 per week up to $350 which was automatically deducted from my pay check as my "initiation fee.""[1] Unions require you to pay your dues, so whatever money you make more than non-unionized workers goes back to the unions. "They protect the lazy worker and prevent the hard worker from moving up and getting what they deserve."[1] This shows that it is unfair to pay unionized workers more because most likely, they do less work than non-unionized workers, and do not deserve the pay increase. All unions do is encourage laziness becuase they can get away with it.

The Summarization:

Point 1: Labor Unions increase unemployment and increase inflation.
How do they increase overall unemployment or increase overall inflation? Simple. A business has revenues and costs. The business uses the revenue to pay off the cost, and the remaining money (if there is any) is profit. Unions forceibly raise wages for employees. This raises the amount of cost they pay, which reduces their profit, and a lot of times forces the company to endure a loss. If the business is incurring a loss, they are forced to either reduce costs or increase revenue. The only ways to reduce costs is to shrink the company, which will inevitably result in the loss of jobs, or to directly reduce the amount of employment, which of course raises unemployment. The only way to increase revenue is to increase the costs of products, which in the long run will not work as the demand curve will shift to the left, resulting in negligable increase in revenue. And the effects of raising the prices of products increases inflation.

Point 2: Labor Unions encourage sloth.
Labor Unions encourage sloth because they discourage laying off and even firing. Why? Because they want to protect their members from unemployment. How does this encourage sloth? Becuase since they discoruage firing, then the things that companies fire employees for like sloth, can not be an excuse for firing. It takes many times doing the exact same bad thing and that thing has to be pretty bad for a unionized worker to be fired. So they tend to be less productive then non-unionized workers because they can get away with it.

Point 3: Unionized workers take advantage of non-unionized workers.
Unionized workers forceibly increase wages for themselves, and the businesses have to lower their wages for non-unionized workers. Not to mention, they take away health benefits, vacation time, etc... for them too.

I look forward to my opponent's new arguments and his rebuttals.

=======Sources=======:

[1]:http://stranger941.hubpages.com...
Viper-King

Pro

My Opponent's Case:
#1: Labor Unions increase unemployment and increase inflation.
They don't need to do that. Many times, the company has profit. They pay of the cost such as rent, water, electricity, and the workers. When they are done, all the money that's left over is the company's profit. "If the business". How do you know they will have a loss? Could you bring up an example of this happening with labor unions? Also it doesn't have to have a loss. It depends on whether the company's costs are higher than the revenues. These are only "if" things. Please show me an example as if this is only a possibility and has not been proven to be done, the:n this can't be applied as it has never been done before. Therefore labor unions don't affect the company but instead help workers receive more money. Also inflation is not going to happen if they don't raise the prices of the products.

#2: Labor unions encourage sloth.
I disagree with you. The opposite of this will be one of my attack points so I'll talk more about it there. I'll just talk about this a little here. Slothfulness is upheld when people make so little, they don't even have economic security. They will actually work harder because they get paid more and don't have a chance of getting fired. More information will in my attack points.

#3: Unionized workers take advantage of non-unionized workers.
Can you get more insight and evidence? Anyways, if there is no evidence, it's not true. Also it's the non unionionized workers' fault for not getting to the labor unions. Also are these all you're arguments? If not please tell me. :)

My Rebuttal:
#1:
They won't be laid off if the company has profit. This is only a scenario until actual sources or events are provided with labor unions getting the company's unionized workers laid off. They do have to pay fees but if it helps them more overall, why not? If they actually help the workers and the scenario that they get laid off doesn't happen, they help the workers long-term.

#2: Labor Unions encourage hard work.
Labor unions pay more money, the workers work harder because the money they are getting is worth what they're working for. My example is my father. He gets more money with labor unions and works hard but without them, he can't even provide economic security and doesn't even bother a lot to work. Therefore labor unions actually encourage hard work instead of slothfulness. People know how precious money is and work according to the level if their job is worth their money.
I'm done with my case and will have my Contention #3 next round.
Debate Round No. 3
Ron-Paul

Con

My Case:


Point 1: Labor Unions increase Unemployment and Inflation.



[1]

Unions raise wages for unionized employees. This means that they are paying a higher cost for labor. If revenue does not go up enough to match the wage price increase, the company will definitely be making less profit. Why? Because costs went up. This reduces profit. The graph above shows how unions forceibly raise wages for unionized employees. Laying off employees to a point increases profit back up. But of course, you can not fire unionized workers, so the people you are laying off to not reduce your costs as much as wanted.

Let me make it simple for you. Costs=$100 and Revnue=$200. This means they are making a $100 profit. If wages are increased and revenue is not raised to match the increase (which is impossible in the short run), then costs will go up, lowering profit. If wages are raised high enough and costs increase above $200 in this instance, they are making a loss.

"By mandating higher wages for current workers, they leave companies with less cash for new hiring."[2] "Unions hurt the company by "hurting" profitability --workers get more money, so obviously profits are being used to make that possible."[3] They take away money from companies that would have gone to hire more and in extreme cases are forced to lay off employees.

But the other way to combat this is to increase the price of products. Firing decreases the costs and increasing prices of products increases revenue (to a point). This is just the other way to do it. Now how does it increase inflation? Well when the prices of products go up, it one, increases the Consumer Price Index, which is the measure of inflation, and two, it gives people less buying power as more of their money is spent on one product.

"Such a victory can have the impact of negatively affecting consumers: costs are raised as a result. If prices aren't raised, then other, non-unionised workers in that company will be exploited further to keep the bosses running, or the company will go out of business!"[3]

Point 2: Labor Unions encourage sloth.

Wow. You simply just said my arguments and reversed them. Ok. How will they work harder if they are paid more and don't have a chance of getting fired? If you didn't have a chance at getting fired, no matter how little work you did, would you do less or more work? Simple. Less work. Why? Because you can get away with it. People like doing as little work they can. And labor unions encourage this by preventing firing.

"The reason companies like Wal-Mart don’t want unions isn’t because they’re anti-union, but labor unions promote laziness and apathy. Laziness and apathy cause businesses to go bankrupt."[4] If too many of these unionized workers are in the company, the company can not operate to market capacity and therefore go out of business. Another way Labor Unions increase unemployment.

Point 3: Unionized workers take advantage of non-unionized workers.

I explained this earlier, but I will repeat it here. When labor unions increase the price of unionized labor and therefore reduce companies's profit, they start laying off workers. And since they can't fire unionized workers, the only other workers are non-unionized workers. So they are the ones getting fired most of the time. Another way unionized workers take advantage of non-unionized workers is since they don't have to do as much work as non-unionized workers, there is a work imbalance where non-unionized workers are doing almost all the work, it is unfair to them that the unionized workers don't do as much work.

Now it's not their fault that they are not unionized because they believe in hard work. People join unions for more money for little work. The non-unionized workers have a work ethic and don't want to join an organization that not only promotes laziness but at times bans hard work.

Point 4: Labor Unions hurt the consumer.

In addition to making consumers pay more money for products, they also make the consumer have a bad experience with the business, which in turn affects the companies's business as the costumers never come back. This reduces profit, and you guessed it, increases unemployment and inflation further, further hurting the company.

"When labor unions establish job classes and prohibit workers from going the extra mile to help customers, it is the customer who is left with the bad experience and loses any desire to return to the place where he or she received poor customer service."[4]

Point 5: Unions have laws that take away the power of bosses and executives that are needed to handle bad situations.

There are many union laws that prevent the bosses and executives of a company from making the positions they are supposed to make. This includes firing. But on a more personal scale, things like crime can go unsolved. There are lots of instances of workplace rape that could have been have been handled swiftly and harshly by bosses and executives who want the rapist punished and who don't want the good name of the company to go bad, which would hurt the company's profits, and this, yet again, stops expansion which increases unemployment, and in extreme cases, actual laying off.

But when handled by a union, there are so many union laws that protect the worker from even things like this that a lot of times these crimes go unpunished. This is another argument that unionized workers take advantage of non-unionized workers. Whereas a non-unionized worker would be prosecuted swiftly, a unionized worker wouldn't even be prosecuted.

My Opponent's Case Rebuttals:

Point 1:

The company does not necessarily have to incur a loss to start firing. It could be a reduction in profit that forces them to stop expanding, which would be an opportunity cost for people to be employed. This increases the unemployment rate because it means those people can't find other jobs.

You notice that states with right to work laws and low total employee union membership have lower unemployment rates than those states who don't.

And what do you mean by "the scenario that they get laid off doesn't happen"? It will happen if labor unions are part of the company. This has no factual bearing.

Point 2: Labor Unions encourage hard work.

Yes, Labor Unions do increase the salary for unionized workers and that makes them better off financially. But you still haven't debunked my argument that since companies can not fire unionized workers, then there is no incentive for unionized workers to work because no matter how little work they do, they are still going to be paid a large sum of money every pay day. And on top of that, if you have to raise wages for unionized workers, you can, as another option, lower wages for non-unionized workers or lay them off, depending on the severity of the situation. So if what you are saying is true, than whatever greater amount of work the higher-paid unionized workers do is countered by the lower-paid non-unionized workers. Get it?

A closing statement:

" The day I started that job, two things became immediately apparent: (1) I was making more money than I had the day before as a non-union employee in the same facility's mailroom. (2) I was now working in an environment in which employees had an adversarial relationship with management."[5]

A demand to my opponent:

My opponent has asked on several occasions to cite and source my claims and to provide evidence, but he has done none of this. so far, he has provided no sources. If you are going to keep asking me for sources, you should provide them too.

Sources:

[1]:http://mises.org...
[2]:http://www.smartmoney.com...
[3]:http://www.marxists.org...
[4]:http://www.broowaha.com...
[5]:http://www.blueridgenow.com...;
Viper-King

Pro

Please have mercy on me, Ron-Paul because my computer erased all of my arguments and I just found that out so now I have to rewrite my arguments in 1 hour. My arguments were great, then they all got erased. Sorry I have to forfeit this round. What would my opponent say if we could extend this to a Part 2 as I've been really enjoying this debate and I've learned fascinating things. Would you please extend it to a two part debate?
Debate Round No. 4
Ron-Paul

Con

A part two would be fine. I will use my Round 4 argument for my Round 1 argument. How many rounds do you want?
Viper-King

Pro

4 rounds for Part 2. Vote for Ron-Paul right now. But don't give him too many points cause there's a Round 2. Ron-Paul, can u start it?
Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Viper-King 2 years ago
Viper-King
sorry RP i lost my source
Posted by Ron-Paul 2 years ago
Ron-Paul
For Swagner134: First of all, how are all of my sources unreliable? And two, at least I had sources.
Posted by Swagner134 2 years ago
Swagner134
all your sources are unreliable
Posted by 16kadams 2 years ago
16kadams
why is the whole case quoted?
Posted by Viper-King 2 years ago
Viper-King
liki locks? the nazi guy?
Posted by 16kadams 2 years ago
16kadams
Pro try non noob like your Liki locks debate
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by imabench 2 years ago
imabench
Ron-PaulViper-KingTied
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Total points awarded:31 
Reasons for voting decision: con had good arguments yet i sympathize for the pro because we have all at one point had arguments deleted (just one mercy point)
Vote Placed by 16kadams 2 years ago
16kadams
Ron-PaulViper-KingTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: pro gave up
Vote Placed by TUF 2 years ago
TUF
Ron-PaulViper-KingTied
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Opponent (viper-king) only really argued in Round 3.
Vote Placed by vmpire321 2 years ago
vmpire321
Ron-PaulViper-KingTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession at the end by PRO