Labor Unions

I was talking to a friend and mentioned that I believe the police unions are a big part of the problem. When a bad cop does something, they rarely get fired. The unions are resistant to any police reform because they are mandated to protect the interests of their members. Even members who don\’t even deserve to have a job.

I come from a Union Family.

When my dad returned home from Korea – he wanted a good job. So he moved us to Detriot Michigan where he got work at the Chrysler Corporation plant – he became a member of the AWU (Autoworkers Union) I still have his union card! This was in the mid-\’50s. At times he was part of a few wildcat strikes – I remember it was dangerous back then when you messed with the unions. My Mom would get all upset.

Dad grew frustrated being laid off all the time, so in 1959, they sold everything we had – except for my 6 most old sisters crib and loaded it on top of the car to go to San Francisco. We stayed with my dad\’s army buddy and their family for 1 week, until Dad got us a Flat to rent in the infamous Haight Ashbury BEFORE it was \”the Haight Ashbury.\”  He started work as a painter and had to join the painters union.

A year later, Dad started a contracting business and had to deal with the unions – San Francisco being a \”union town.\” That was an eye-opener for him – having to be on the other side. At one time he had 60-70 men working for him.

My mom worked for good old Ma Bell – remember her? She was a telephone operator. In the 1970s  it broke all up,  and she then worked for AT&T and had a new union, she hated. She retired from AT&T.

When I was in the 5th grade, I had a teacher, Mrs. Purcell who physically and verbally abused me. She locked me in the paper cabinet knowing fully what she did. She asked me to stay after school – I was always in trouble with her, for just being me. She asked me to get paper, which I did and she pushed me into the closet. I was there for 30 minutes or longer. I pounded and screamed until Bozo Beans, the school janitor came and let me out. I told my mom and she made complaints at the district – to no avail. I didn\’t tell my Mom half the stuff that was being done to me. On the last day of school, I was so relieved I didn\’t have her anymore as a teacher that my friends and I told my mom everything. Even after the new school year, my mom was trying to get her fired. She ended up leaving the State of California and went back to Texas. She was a mean witch.

When I worked in San Francisco, you pretty much had to join a union. I was in the Teamsters Union for clerical workers. People used to say, when you join a union, you get good pay and good retirement and benefits. I did have all of that. Granted, when I was constantly dealing with sexual harassment, back then, the union did not do a thing about it. Of course, back then, we didn\’t call it sexual harassment. This was in the early to mid-1970s.

I had a run-in with a union once – I was renting a house a major pipe broke. So I called the landlord and he had plumbers come out to fix the pipe. It just so happened that the neighbor across the street was a PROUD Union Plumber! And it just so happened that my landlord hired a non-union shop. Do you know, that the local union shut down the job, which left us without water over a HOT 3 day holiday weekend? Our next-door neighbor graciously hooked up a hose so we could flush our toilets and take baths. I had 3 little boys under the age of 6. They even sent over a couple of picketers to walk back and forth in front of my house. SCAB WORKERS! It was embarrassing for me. It did make my Dad laugh – Ohhhh the sins of the father…

So presently, my 2 sons are in unions. One works for the State of California public employees union and Foodie is in the SEIU and is currently a Union Rep. He tends to buck up to Union authority especially after returning from a big Union convention in LA in January. Although I don\’t believe they are associated with organized crime like they used to be, he still needs to watch his back if he is going to buck up to them at times.  Remember Jimmy Hoffa?

6 thoughts on “Labor Unions

  1. Anonymous June 13, 2020 / 1:49 am

    My dad was a union man. GA is a right to work state and unions have their limits. My take when unions support corruption is more like, people who take advantage of the system know how to make it work for their advantage which most people don't do in their daily lives. I've seen teachers manipulate the system who weren't very good and I've seen parents who were unreasonable manipulate the politics. I worked for very few principals who would not bow to pressure.That said, it was horrible that teacher locked you in a closet. Wow.


  2. Anonymous June 13, 2020 / 2:19 am

    Unions were excellent when they first started, but now are a pain in the butt for the most part. I agree about the police union.God bless.


  3. Anonymous June 13, 2020 / 2:23 am

    Power corrupts. Without unions, a company takes advantage of workers. When a union gets powerful it takes advantage of the company, and it takes a little extra of the workers wage to line the pockets of the leaders.Long term I think we are better with unions than without, but it can be a close call.


  4. Anonymous June 13, 2020 / 4:10 am

    I do remember Jimmy Hoffman. I never was in unions or had to join them so I have no experience with them. I think they could be effective if handled correctly.Betty


  5. Anonymous June 13, 2020 / 10:40 am

    When I worked for the City of Detroit, I was president of my union – the laboratory workers in the hospital. I ended up quitting as president because I did not want to represent lazy employees. I believe there is such a thing as 'union mentality' where you goof off and let the union take care of you. Not me. My friend who worked for Chrysler was a union rep and also get fed up with some of the workers. As for Jimmy, the restaurant he disappeared from is down the road from me and we are all still waiting for his body to turn up.


  6. Anonymous June 19, 2020 / 12:26 am

    Interesting post. I come from a Union family, too. My dad was a machinist and a leader in his local. I spent almost all of my career as a manager and was disappointed to see that the union I dealt with spent most of the time defending people who had serious infractions and not advocating for the bulk of the work force.


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