Union Nostalgia Won't Cut It in Modern World

Charles Krauthammer: Lower wages better than unemployment

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 14, 2012 12:37 PM CST

(Newser) – It might be "shocking" that Michigan of all places is now a right-to-work state, but it was also "inevitable," writes Charles Krauthammer in the Washington Post. Expect the rest of the Rust Belt to follow suit, because while it's nice to look back fondly on the post-war glory years of the UAW, modern reality is that "the heyday of the sovereign private-sector union is gone," he writes. Globalization has made sure of it.

Krauthammer professes "great admiration for the dignity and protections trade unionism has brought to American workers," and acknowledges that de-unionization likely means lower wages for workers. But at least they'll have jobs. "Higher wages or lower unemployment? It is a wrenching choice." But this "recalibration" is necessary for America's recovery. Read his full column here.

Protesters wear stickers to illustrate loss in wages from the right-to-work law in Lansing, Mich., Wednesday.
Protesters wear stickers to illustrate loss in wages from the right-to-work law in Lansing, Mich., Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
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