A very important question:
— Michael Sexton (@jmsexton_) September 4, 2017
No doubt the biggest systemic cause for this is "right to work" laws, which have blanketed over half the country. But an earlier action by Ronald Reagan when he broke the air traffic controllers' union may have set it all in motion:
In 1981 Ronald Reagan destroyed the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization when he fired 11,000 workers. The union had protested unhealthy working conditions and went on strike for a reduced work week (equivalent to the hours worked by controllers in other countries) and increased early retirement benefits.
Historian Joseph A. McCartin concluded that the 1981 strike and defeat of PATCO was “one of the most important events” in late 20th century U.S. labor history. Donald J. Devine, the director of the Office of Personnel Management at the time, said “When the president said no ... American business leaders were given a lesson in managerial leadership that they could not and did not ignore.
“Many private-sector executives have told me that they were able to cut the fat from their organizations and adopt more competitive work practices because of what the government did in those days. I would not be surprised if these unseen effects of this private-sector shakeout under the inspiration of the president were as profound in influencing the recovery that occurred as the formal economic and fiscal programs.”
I remember when this happened, and I remember the scare tactics used to justify this, with threats of planes crashing into each other and similar nonsense. But even with all that rhetoric flying around, a lot of people were concerned that it signaled a turn for the worse for the American worker. But as they always do, Conservative pundits opined that people were overreacting, and that it was an isolated incident that was brought on by the union itself, and nothing to worry about. Labor union membership has dropped from a height of 35% in the 1950's to the current (and lowest) level of about 11%, proving those Conservative pundits wrong. But in reality, when they said there was nothing to worry about, they were probably lying anyway, while counting on this exact result.
Here's a quick joke to shake off the anger from that previous observation:
A Russian spy, a Klansman, and televangelist walk into a bar.
Bartender says, "Sorry. Republican Convention is next door."
— Claudia (@theClaudiaInez) September 1, 2017
Badump-tsssh. That was supposed to be a drum thing. Doesn't really translate.
This, on the other hand, is not funny:
— Dana Hall (@DanaHall825) September 4, 2017
Using whatever tools you can to undermine the efforts of a political opponent is sleazy enough, but to jeopardize the welfare and prosperity of citizens in the process, is several levels below contemptible. This raises legitimate questions about the GOP's dedication to public service, and those questions need to be asked by the mainstream media.
— McHenry for Congress (@McHenryCampaign) September 4, 2017
Go to hell, you hypocritical little weasel. You and your buddies are the biggest threat to American workers that exists, so you can take that Tweet and shove it.
— NC State AFL-CIO (@NCStateAFLCIO) September 4, 2017
Flipping back to Patrick McHenry for a moment, his idea of "paid" time off, is taking away time-and-a-half compensation for overtime hours worked, and using those extra hours as "comp time." But (of course) the workers don't get to choose when to take that comp time, the employers do. Gee thanks, asshole.
This is all I should be able to see from my window. pic.twitter.com/CKN8KdoXB6
— Chapel Hill Resident (@ChapelHilarious) August 31, 2017
Okay, you don't have to be a Triangleite to enjoy how #$%^& funny these Tweets are. Here's another, because they're like Ruffles:
Of course I support students, just not so close to a school.
— Chapel Hill Resident (@ChapelHilarious) August 24, 2017
— /timpeck/ (@timothypeck) September 5, 2017
That must be why I had never heard of this book before, because all the copies got sold out. Idiot.
— Dallas Woodhouse (@DallasWoodhouse) September 5, 2017
Lol! Poor Dallas, if he only had a brain. Dude, you linked to a New York Times article while you complained about a media blackout. So many cocktails, so little time...
On that hilarious note, here's your Onion:
— The Onion (@TheOnion) September 3, 2017
I'll work on it, I promise...