Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

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KnightExemplar
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu May 05, 2016 1:29 pm UTC

The cynic in me notes that labor unions don't like other labor unions, because it means that other workers are making decisions that they can't control. And that includes hypothetical labor unions that are being formed in other countries. Its harder for labor unions to collectively bargain if you can switch your workers over to Vietnam or Mexico.

Even if the work benefits the workers specifically, the labor unions themselves would be against it.
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morriswalters
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby morriswalters » Thu May 05, 2016 1:47 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:If this were the case, one would expect most unions to be pro-TPP, yes?
Why? Cynically I would expect unions to be thinking of their power base. If the treaty would increase the number of union jobs then I would expect the unions to be on board because unions have been under pressure and declining. So I see unions viewing this as reducing union jobs. For example, removing tariffs and leveling the playing field means, in, let us say, Ford's Motors case, that they can lose the union by buildings Fords in Mexico and bringing them back to the US. I don't know that Ford does this but it illustrates the point.

Tyndmyr
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu May 05, 2016 1:58 pm UTC

Right.

But that conclusion inherently involves the non-unionized areas outcompeting the unionized ones.

It is, essentially, the belief that unionized labor is not worthwhile in a level playing field.

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sardia
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby sardia » Thu May 05, 2016 2:09 pm UTC

Morris, don't lay decades of conservatives damaging our social safety net at my feet just because the US doesn't take care of its own. The GOP took away pretty much everything from those workers, and I'm the bad guy? The US used to help out the poor much more. The only reason we stopped was because you didn't want your taxes to go up another 1%.

Don't give me that short sighted outrage.
You don't buy fair trade goods, you don't vote for tax increases and you know it.

Tyndmyr, ah you aren't making the argument I thought you were making. What a curious thing to argue.

leady
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby leady » Thu May 05, 2016 2:10 pm UTC

An argument I've used elsewhere and confused everyone, is that in a world were everyone is fully unionised and maximises their workers power then it becomes indistinguishable from a free market. Unions only work for trades that can be monopolised and preferably with direct state support, which can then be used to extract value from everyone else.

ergo of course they wouldn't support any free trade

KnightExemplar
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu May 05, 2016 2:11 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Right.

But that conclusion inherently involves the non-unionized areas outcompeting the unionized ones.

It is, essentially, the belief that unionized labor is not worthwhile in a level playing field.


I think that's something profound to say.
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elasto
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby elasto » Thu May 05, 2016 3:01 pm UTC

leady wrote:An argument I've used elsewhere and confused everyone, is that in a world were everyone is fully unionised and maximises their workers power then it becomes indistinguishable from a free market.

Only if the unions openly compete with each other in a race to the bottom. In this mystical world where everyone sees the benefit of belonging to a union, they'd probably also see the benefit of cooperating with sister unions.

One of the few counters to the virtually unchecked power of transnational corporations would be transnational unions.

(Course, if you have transnational corporations and unions, you might as well just abolish the idea of countries altogether!)

Chen
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby Chen » Thu May 05, 2016 3:07 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Right.

But that conclusion inherently involves the non-unionized areas outcompeting the unionized ones.

It is, essentially, the belief that unionized labor is not worthwhile in a level playing field.


Even if the deal requires higher working standards elsewhere, there's likely still going to be a labor cost disparity between the US and less industrialized nations. As such you're still going to have labor moving to those cheaper locations and that is presumably what the unions here are worried about.

I mean this is what I get from the first hit when I google the question as to why the unions dislike the deal.

morriswalters
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby morriswalters » Thu May 05, 2016 3:08 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Morris, don't lay decades of conservatives damaging our social safety net at my feet just because the US doesn't take care of its own.
Sensitive? Then don't make creative word images of old people dying of heat exhaustion because we don't transfer jobs.
sardia wrote:The only reason we stopped was because you didn't want your taxes to go up another 1%.
Sorry, you pushed the wrong button. I could care less about taxes. I'm a rare breed. I'm happy with government overall.
sardia wrote:You don't buy fair trade goods, you don't vote for tax increases and you know it.
Have you been into the happy weed? Only once have I voted on taxes period. That was a library tax. I voted yes and the referendum was defeated anyway. I had to look up fair trade goods. You are correct. Neither do I buy into folk medicine, magic and living off the grid and other myths.
Tyndmyr wrote:Right.

But that conclusion inherently involves the non-unionized areas outcompeting the unionized ones.

It is, essentially, the belief that unionized labor is not worthwhile in a level playing field.
I'm unsure who you are responding to. However the notion of a level playing field is nonsense of the highest order. And that is the first trigger for me in the summaries. Every page starts with that saw. Unions serve to enhance power for workers through collective bargaining, the only thing they level is the balance of power between management and labor.

leady
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby leady » Thu May 05, 2016 3:57 pm UTC

elasto wrote:Only if the unions openly compete with each other in a race to the bottom. In this mystical world where everyone sees the benefit of belonging to a union, they'd probably also see the benefit of cooperating with sister unions.

One of the few counters to the virtually unchecked power of transnational corporations would be transnational unions.

(Course, if you have transnational corporations and unions, you might as well just abolish the idea of countries altogether!)


Clearly the argument is just confusing :)

What I'm saying is that if you at most companies in a stable long term low risk margin market is that they make a margin as low as 7% on revenues. That ROI for the market is somewhat static, regardless of input costs. The net effect of unions and by proxy higher wage costs in a given market is actually to drive up the price for a good (contrary to popular lore, scrooge mcduck isn't taking the hit). Ergo if everyone maximises their wages, they are maximising their consumption good prices too. For most people I suspect these will be practically a one in, one out trade.

The only times unions work, is were the market they operate in is plastic to the pricing. Typically this will be because they aren't substitutional in some way, as such teaching unions, doctors in social health services, lawyers, railway workers and drivers all have successful unions extracting value from other markets, whereas unionised production line workers et al are unionising themselves out of a job.

Tyndmyr
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu May 05, 2016 5:29 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Right.

But that conclusion inherently involves the non-unionized areas outcompeting the unionized ones.

It is, essentially, the belief that unionized labor is not worthwhile in a level playing field.
I'm unsure who you are responding to. However the notion of a level playing field is nonsense of the highest order. And that is the first trigger for me in the summaries. Every page starts with that saw. Unions serve to enhance power for workers through collective bargaining, the only thing they level is the balance of power between management and labor.


Your post is directly above mine, I'm responding primarily to you.

Level playing field in the sense of lacking tariffs and other protectionist measures. What TPP would, well, encourage less of, anyway. The whole concept of free trade centers around removing such barriers.

Unions, in theory, can still collectively bargain, this doesn't impact that at all. The point is that non-union made goods will outcompete union made goods. That's what they fear. They do not believe their own claims that overall, union arrangements make for a better workforce. Clearly, they believe that union goods are more expensive, without corresponding gains to compensate.

And, as mentioned by leady, if you COULD somehow raise wages equally for everyone, the net effect would be nothing.

Unions only are meaningful in a protectionist context.

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sardia
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby sardia » Thu May 05, 2016 5:51 pm UTC

Tyndmyr, wouldn't Unions be afraid of a lower income country's workforce regardless if the poorer had unions or not? Their Union may simply be cheaper than our unions. It has nothing to do with Union vs non union labor.

Tyndmyr
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu May 05, 2016 6:01 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Tyndmyr, wouldn't Unions be afraid of a lower income country's workforce regardless if the poorer had unions or not? Their Union may simply be cheaper than our unions. It has nothing to do with Union vs non union labor.


Well, I don't see them up in arms about trade with Europe, even the bits that have lower standards of living. Compared to the US, a LOT of countries are lower income.

There seems to be more baked in fear of countries that are quite light on labor organization.

morriswalters
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby morriswalters » Thu May 05, 2016 6:03 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Level playing field in the sense of lacking tariffs and other protectionist measures. What TPP would, well, encourage less of, anyway. The whole concept of free trade centers around removing such barriers.
I understand that.
Tyndmyr wrote:Unions, in theory, can still collectively bargain, this doesn't impact that at all. The point is that non-union made goods will outcompete union made goods. That's what they fear. They do not believe their own claims that overall, union arrangements make for a better workforce. Clearly, they believe that union goods are more expensive, without corresponding gains to compensate.
No they can't. Tariffs are designed to protect jobs. If Ford can produce anywhere, unions have no leverage. Quality isn't the issue. Most goods have sufficient quality wherever they are made.
Tyndmyr wrote:That's what they fear. They do not believe their own claims that overall, union arrangements make for a better workforce. Clearly, they believe that union goods are more expensive, without corresponding gains to compensate.
And well they should fear it. But it is probably irrelevant since they are doomed anyway.

You could argue this type of thing is precisely what has driven Trump's rise. Free trade benefits business most directly. GE or Ford get bigger and the public sees that. At the same time those 500 jobs talked about earlier that migrate to Mexico create dissent in today's population. Not the population that will eventually benefit from this agreement. The level playing field should ideally raise all boats and it doesn't. It creates winners and losers. Worse yet from the public's point of view it is done by an elite who are unelected and unreachable in terms what you and I can do. The treaty itself is take it or leave it and GE probably had more input than Congress(who are useless in any case).

jseah
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Re: Trans Pacific Partnership Deal Reached

Postby jseah » Thu May 05, 2016 11:49 pm UTC

I'm reading the labour section now. Well it's a bit short on specifics but some parts are quite laughable.
Eg. The malaysia part doesn't mention the bumiputra benefits which is a major barrier to foreign investment. Minimum wage laws? Unenforceable, cheating on sales tax is already hard to catch and you want to track minimum wage? Ha.
Overtime? Don't make me laugh lol, what is this overtime pay? Voluntary unpaid overtime is the norm here, nothing you can do about that.

EDIT:the malaysia section of the main text makes no mention of minimum wage? Strange.
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