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Unions

March 14, 2013

Dear Editor, I would like to start by saying that I am a Christian. As Christians, we are called to help others through the hard times of their lives....

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Thoughtful

Mar-14-13 11:54 AM

I am so sorry you have mixed God with Unions. Please, Please do not mix these two concepts. Two entirely different worlds for discussions............

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turley

Mar-14-13 12:44 PM

There is absolutely NOTHING Godly about the way these unions are run...or about the crooks that run them.... or about the victims they leave behind in places like Steubenville, Mingo Junction and Martins Ferry, when they move on to collect their "dues" someplace else.

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Angels4u

Mar-14-13 12:53 PM

I agree with you Mr. Lofton. I believe if we made our choices in life by Gods rules, having the heart like Jesus, love as God instructed us to do, our world would be different. God should be at the forfront of every choice we make, asking for His guidance. Stand firm Mr. Lofton, stand firm!

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promo61

Mar-14-13 2:29 PM

It could easily be argued that unions here in the valley accomplished less for its members if you consider what's left of them. The position this writer takes in comparing Jesus intentions for our lives to suffering workers is well-meaning on one hand, while on the other he castigates the evil employer. God's reign doesn't stop at the boardroom door either.

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BushCrimeFamily

Mar-14-13 3:00 PM

Right wing rubes have been brainwashed into believing that unions are somehow evil. It's amazing what Fox "News" can accomplish when Republicans refuse to think.

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Thoughtful

Mar-14-13 4:47 PM

BCF. 50 dollars if you can quote anyone else but Fox... Please broaden your horizon, Please !!

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benlofton

Mar-14-13 7:37 PM

promo61, I don't seek to castigate or punish anyone, that is not up to me. I pray for these employers! I do seek to shame them for practices which take necessities from the poor to give luxuries to the rich. I seek to change their hearts by uniting working people to expose greed for the sin that it is. I believe that anyone who works for a living is entitled to a decent standard of living.

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Angels4u

Mar-14-13 8:51 PM

Unions run in the past are like everything else, in the past. We learn from the past, making right choices to better our future. There are good and bad choice makers within every union, as well as Democrats and Republicans. We can give up or stand firm to make things better. As for shame,and changing hearts, this is Gods job, not ours. We are to pray for our enemies, speaking truth in Christ like love. Greed within companies speak volumes when employees use whole pay checks to pay for doctors,emergency rooms, leaving little for food, and household bills. Children do without needed medical help because there is not enough money due to low wages. They rarely go to a dentist. The love of money has filled the hearts of men treating there employees as, one step away from hiring slaves. God warns men of what happens when hearts are full of greed. The Bible is full of men fighting for what is right.Ben Lofton, I speak for many when I say thank you!

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Capitalist

Mar-14-13 10:15 PM

Ben , I also am a follower of Jesus. I agree with you entirely. As for you turley , I take it personal when someone bashes my Union. I know for a fact Director McCall spends endless hours trying to help the victims left behind, as you call my Brothers and Sisters.My father , who retired from Ferry, taught me about unions and how they have helped make this country what it is. God bless America and God bless my Union!

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Angels4u

Mar-14-13 10:41 PM

We need unions to protect the rights of hard working people. Without unions our rights as human beings are falling to the wayside. Our employers just step over us on their way to the bank. This is not Gods way. If we had more people uniting for our God given rights, as Ben has said, we could take our family to the doctors, the dentist, while eating good meals, and paying our bills. We might even see our employers at the bank, while we to make a deposit.The dream of sending our children to college would then be a reality, one they deserve. This fight for rights, within unions is for our children!

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turley

Mar-15-13 1:14 AM

Capitalist.....McCall was paid over 100K last year.....how much money did he put in the pockets of these steelworkers he spends so many hours anguishing over????...if you grew up in this area and remember it as it used to be, then take a look around you NOW.....see the long term "rewards" of believing in democrats and unions to get you through life....grow up and wise up!

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benlofton

Mar-15-13 6:35 AM

Turley, How much did the top executives of RG steel take home? How is the USW responsible for the steel market? How can the USW make manufacturers buy American steel rather than Chinese steel made by children who are practically enslaved? It seems to me that by blaming the union you are blaming the employees for RG steel closing.You are blaming the WRONG PEOPLE.

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jonetu

Mar-15-13 8:26 AM

To be anti-union is to be anti-worker rights. I can't understand how regular people with regular job's have been brainwashed by certain media types to be anti-worker.

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promo61

Mar-15-13 9:28 AM

BenLofton; I was a union member many years ago. My family members were union employees. We all have stories of rampant waste, theft, and absenteeism. I personally saw workers steal, break equipment and disappear for hours at a time, leaving me to do the work of 2 people. Steel companies, coal mines and other industries suffered from it for YEARS and could do nothing about it. All of it was in the name of "getting back at the man" thinking the company pockets were bottomless. Turns out they weren't after all. We can agree to disagree, and I will defend your right to your opinion.

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thedogg

Mar-15-13 12:59 PM

unions arent bad just the greedy people running them.

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uglyassmf

Mar-15-13 5:09 PM

There is corruption every where there is money. That doesn't make the cause or the the majority of the people bad. I would argued that there is much more corruption in politics than in any union.

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benlofton

Mar-15-13 6:48 PM

promo61, Your claim that somehow workers who unite to bargain collectively with their employer are more prone to steal lacks merit and is unfounded. I have seen many non-union employees steal from work and when I worked in the coal mines the majority of the stealing was done by company men.Poor work ethic and morals have nothing to do with collective bargaining. Collective bargaining agreements do put the burden of proof on the employer to ensure that workers are not fired unjustly.

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Thoughtful

Mar-15-13 7:58 PM

Ben lofton, There aRe millions of workers who are non union that thrive, are well paid, have excellent benefits, outstanding working conditions, get pro options, and excel within thousands of companies. I have been their, seen it, and experienced it so unions are not always the answer. I certainly respect any group that organizes and wishes to have a union but you may want to look throughout the US and evaluate a broad spectrum of economic advancement and lay aside your predisposition for saying everyone should be in a union.. Let us be fair, honest,and reasonable..........

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Angels4u

Mar-15-13 8:37 PM

God created men the same. We all have the nature to sin by breaking the ten commandments. It is by choice, and it happens in all walks of life. Union, or non-union does not make a dishonest heart. Morals and character define our choices of the heart. So lets be clear on this, THOUGHTFUL. There are places of employment with good pay and benefits that are non-union. Unions are for the companies that do not, and the right to make that choice. I do not see where it has been said everyone should join unions. Unions are to protect the hard working people from being abused by companies that would not spit on them if they were on fire, unless it would benefit them. Unions are insurance to protect our rights, our dignity, and I can tell you that most of the people fighting against unions are not working for employers with no benefits and low pay. Watching there children suffer a tooth ache because there is no money or benefits. Tell that to a child in pain.

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benlofton

Mar-15-13 8:43 PM

Thoughtful, Sure there are employees that are well paid and aren't union members. But who decides their pay, their benefits, and safety? Who decides which workers will be promoted? Who decides which workers will be laid off? The employer does that's who. I guess that these employees can always refer to their employee handbook, which is written and can be changed by the employer at any time. Companies generally have contracts with their customers stating how much product will be provided at what cost and under what conditions and would never subject themselves to not having a binding agreement. Why should workers not be entitled to the same?

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turley

Mar-16-13 9:29 AM

Ben....if you dont recognize the difference between the need for a contract with customers or suppliers versus the need for one with employees, then you have already laid forth the tale of why this valley now is no more than a micro version of Detroit. Customers are NOT paid....they DO the paying....employers do not need to pay them, insure them, or acomodate their constant demands or tolerate their continuous threats. WHY do you think the NEW industries in this area bring in workers from elsewhere????....keep voting democrat, keep believing in the McCalls and Gerards, and keep those bar stools covered with your pudgy bottoms......some of us are going back to WORK.

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benlofton

Mar-16-13 10:42 AM

Turley, What you say doesn't make any sense. Are employees not supplying our labor? Our employers are the customer and our labor is the product.Unions are needed because like Victor Hugo said, "There is always more misery in the lower class than there is humanity in the upper class." The time to organize is NOW. Waiting submissively has always meant standing with an empty cup in one hand while the cup of misery overflows in the other hand.

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Thoughtful

Mar-16-13 10:55 AM

Ben Lofton, Have you heard of pay for performance. It works without the need of a union. Trust me. Millions of workers have advanced upon their own merits, their contributions, and the value add they bring to an organization. It is not based upon seniority, who you know, or the buddy system. Again, I am not anti union but let each worker choose, see their options, and create opportunities for themselves. Millions of success stories.......

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benlofton

Mar-16-13 11:25 AM

Thoughtful, I have been working for quite a while now. This utopia that you speak of is not reality for most workers. I have seen favoritism in the workplace. I have seen terrible workers advance because they were related to someone. I have seen incompetent employees make more money and advance because they were a friend. The point I am trying to make is that without the protection of a union contract, the employee has no say so in anything. Benjamin Franklin said, "God helps them, who help themselves." When workers form a union we become more responsible for our own futures.

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turley

Mar-16-13 3:48 PM

I knew going in that folks like Thoughtful and myself would be scoffed at or viewed as anti-worker. Fact is, outside the hills of this Valley sits the REAL working world. In it, as Thoughtful points out, employees are valued and given "merit" pay and benefit increases based on their ideas, their productivity, their knowledge and their experience....like it or not, that how most of us make a living and promote in the workplace. Ben seems like a pretty smart fellow, even though we disagree on this issue. I am sure he knows that mathematics is an EXACT science...in fact, the worlds ONLY exact science.....so lets start doing the math, Ben. Every day, tens of thousands of companies employing hundreds of thousands of workers operate every day without unions.........but there are ZERO unions that operate without companies.....dont blame folks like Thoughtful or myself-----just do the MATH.

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