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Old August 24th, 2011, 05:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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"According to various legal scholars, the doctrine of at-will employment first appeared as a statement in a legal treatise by Horace C. Wood, Master and Servant § 134, at pages 272-273 (1877). "


"Apparently, Wood simply invented the concept of at-will employment, but wrongly described it as already accepted by the courts."


"Soon after Wood's treatise appeared, various courts began citing the rule in his treatise, and thus the rule became accepted law."


"Several law review articles have noted that the USA is alone among the industrialized nations of the world in providing no protection against wrongful termination of employment."


History of At-Will Employment Law in the USA

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Old August 24th, 2011, 06:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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"Several law review articles have noted that the USA is alone among the industrialized nations of the world in providing no protection against wrongful termination of employment."
Uh... but we do. Unemployment pay.
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Old August 24th, 2011, 06:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Uh... but we do. Unemployment pay.
I think he means that if you are fired for no reason you cannot get your job back, which in the UK you can.
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Old August 24th, 2011, 06:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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I think he means that if you are fired for no reason you cannot get your job back, which in the UK you can.
Not to sound like a jerk, but why the hell would you want to work somewhere that you just got fired? Obviously, people don't like you there. Go find a job somewhere that you'll be liked an appreciated.
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Old August 24th, 2011, 06:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Uh... but we do. Unemployment pay.
Tell that to the guy fired a few months before retirement that was relying on his pension to help.
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Old August 24th, 2011, 06:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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... Go find a job somewhere that you'll be liked an appreciated.
Labor participation Rate = 63.9% and falling.

Bureau of Labor Statistics Data
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Old August 24th, 2011, 08:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Not to sound like a jerk, but why the hell would you want to work somewhere that you just got fired? Obviously, people don't like you there. Go find a job somewhere that you'll be liked an appreciated.
So you have time to find another job, but still be able to pay your bills in the mean time. Or maybe when you do go back, they will see the error of their ways and there won't be any need to go elsewhere.
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Old August 24th, 2011, 09:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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So you have time to find another job, but still be able to pay your bills in the mean time. Or maybe when you do go back, they will see the error of their ways and there won't be any need to go elsewhere.
Much likelier the former, rather than the latter.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 02:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Tell that to the guy fired a few months before retirement that was relying on his pension to help.
What if we never relied on someone else to take of our retirement income?? How's that for freedom and liberty? I know, it's a foreign and ridiculous concept.

Now, if I own a business, it's mine. If I don't have a need for an employee anymore, it is my right to terminate them. People are under the impression that the job they hold is somehow "theirs". It's not, that job belongs to the employer.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 09:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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What if we never relied on someone else to take of our retirement income?? How's that for freedom and liberty? I know, it's a foreign and ridiculous concept.
It's not like people spend their whole lives paying into the retirement system.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 12:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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... Now, if I own a business, it's mine. If I don't have a need for an employee anymore, it is my right to terminate them. People are under the impression that the job they hold is somehow "theirs". It's not, that job belongs to the employer.
I believe you are missing the authors point, i.e. At-Will laws have no legal basis, contract law should be used for disputes regarding employment.

Doesn't mean that if one's services are no longer needed one cannot be terminated.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 01:00 PM   #12 (permalink)
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What if we never relied on someone else to take of our retirement income?? How's that for freedom and liberty? I know, it's a foreign and ridiculous concept.

Now, if I own a business, it's mine. If I don't have a need for an employee anymore, it is my right to terminate them. People are under the impression that the job they hold is somehow "theirs". It's not, that job belongs to the employer.
The point is, if someone is promised something for 20 years, and then is dismissed only to deprive that person of what they were promised, an injustice was performed to said person.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 01:19 PM   #13 (permalink)
 
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Now, if I own a business, it's mine.
How would you feel if you put 40 years into "your business" and after all that time someone said they would like to buy it for 20 million dollars, but before you sign the papers, the state you live in, claims eminent domain on "you business". Would you still feel that way?


But we are not talking about a negative factors here, but positive factors.

If you need to down size the company, then you have a right to downsize the company, a negative factor.

But if you are firing the person for a positive factor, ie you have to pay pension, you want to get even with him for sleeping with your daughter, or anything else that like that, it should be illegal.


At-will workers have no contract and therefor no legal basis to fall back on. By forcing both parties to sign a contract, you can make the working environment fair. It does not mean you can not legally position them into a at will state, but it means they have to openly agree to it. If you state that you would give them pension, fire them only to protect the company, and give them a christmas bonus, then they have a contract to legal back up.


Laws against at-will employment does nothing to harm your business, but requires you to set the ground rules in writing before you hire anyone. And if you refused to have something in writing, the law will give you a default set of rules. If you don't like those rules, then make sure you get them to sign the your contract.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 02:01 PM   #14 (permalink)
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... Laws against at-will employment does nothing to harm your business, ...
The abolishment of at-will employment would help honest business.

"Judicial reluctance to alter the absolute nature of at-will employment has restricted the availability of judicial remedies for wrongful discharge in the USA, with the consequence that prudent employees will follow the three monkey rule (i.e., hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil) in order to avoid termination of their employment. The lack of protection for whistleblowers has resulted in damage to American society, in which wrongs — and even illegal conduct — are concealed. Just as bad, unjust or unethical decisions by management are legally protected."

Under section, proper role of common law; History of At-Will Employment Law in the USA
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Old August 25th, 2011, 06:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I got fired by a jackass DM, who, sadly, was my DM at my previous job, so, when he's gone, I'd like to get my former job back, because I honestly enjoyed it, so, there you go.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 07:55 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I got fired by a jackass DM, who, sadly, was my DM at my previous job, so, when he's gone, I'd like to get my former job back, because I honestly enjoyed it, so, there you go.
Sounds like your DM has a "thing" for you, sure DM won't follow you to new job ?
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Old August 25th, 2011, 11:06 PM   #17 (permalink)
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What if we never relied on someone else to take of our retirement income?? How's that for freedom and liberty? I know, it's a foreign and ridiculous concept.

Now, if I own a business, it's mine. If I don't have a need for an employee anymore, it is my right to terminate them. People are under the impression that the job they hold is somehow "theirs". It's not, that job belongs to the employer.
What I read: "Give me my liberty to hurt other people. It's my right."

We don't have the right to ruin someone's life because it's "our business" and we "feel like it".

Sometimes I think conservatives don't actually know what the whole point of having a government is.

Edit: Thanks for editing me, moderator. I guess you were really bored or something. Nothing I said was offensive to any reasonable person. There was no need to change "you" to "we". I was specifically speaking to that one person.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 01:37 AM   #18 (permalink)
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What I read: "Give me my liberty to hurt other people. It's my right."

We don't have the right to ruin someone's life because it's "our business" and we "feel like it".

Sometimes I think conservatives don't actually know what the whole point of having a government is.

Edit: Thanks for editing me, moderator. I guess you were really bored or something. Nothing I said was offensive to any reasonable person. There was no need to change "you" to "we". I was specifically speaking to that one person.
Tony, the gov't is there to enforce contracts. If there is a contract between you and an employer and it's broken, there are ways to remedy that. The gov't shouldn't be mandating rules and regulations. That's what true conservatism is.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 01:24 PM   #19 (permalink)
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The point is, if someone is promised something for 20 years, and then is dismissed only to deprive that person of what they were promised, an injustice was performed to said person.
What about a contract that binds you to your employer for X number of years? Suppose you have such a contract and you make 12.50/hr with no benefits and you find a job that will pay 35.00/hr and full benefits.

Should you be prevented from taking the better job because you have a year left on your contract?

And yes, I know they exist and in some industries, leaving can be very costly for the worker.

We want to be guaranteed some measure of job security, but what about the employer?
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Old August 28th, 2011, 01:40 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Tony, the gov't is there to enforce contracts. If there is a contract between you and an employer and it's broken, there are ways to remedy that. The gov't shouldn't be mandating rules and regulations. That's what true conservatism is.
The point being that at-will employment violated long standing common law regarding contracts between employee & employer, thus negating the enforcement of contract by the courts.

"In 1989, the Utah Supreme Court declared:The genesis of the at-will rule in its present form in America, however, can be traced to Horace G. Wood's 1877 treatise on the master-servant relationship. H. Wood, Master and Servant § 134 (1877), cited in Note, Implied Contract Rights to Job Security, 26 Stan.L.Rev. 335, 341 (1974). Wood proffered his rule without analysis and cited apparently inapposite authority on its behalf. Id. at 341-43. Notwithstanding its dubious antecedents, the rule was adopted by many jurisdictions without careful or thorough examination. In the leading case of Martin v. New York Life Insurance Co., 148 N.Y. 117, 42 N.E. 416 (1895), the court repudiated the common law presumption that a general hiring was for a term of one year and uncritically embraced the at-will rule as framed by Wood. The Martin opinion did not analyze any prior authority, but did assert that several other states had adopted the at-will rule. The Martin decision was not atypical. Most courts offered no rationale or analysis for substituting the at-will doctrine for the common law presumption. By the arrival of the twentieth century, the at-will doctrine was well-established throughout the United States and served to reinforce turn-of-the-century ideas concerning laissez-faire economics and freedom to contract. Note, Implied Contract Rights to Job Security, 26 Stan.L.Rev. at 340; Note, Protecting At-Will Employees Against Wrongful Discharge: The Duty to Terminate Only in Good Faith, 93 Harv.L.Rev. 1816, 1824-26 (1980).

The development and establishment of the at-will rule in Utah was also accomplished without critical examination. .... Berube v. Fashion Centre, Ltd., 771 P.2d 1033, 1040-1041 (Utah 1989)."
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Old August 28th, 2011, 02:07 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Not to sound like a jerk, but why the hell would you want to work somewhere that you just got fired? Obviously, people don't like you there. Go find a job somewhere that you'll be liked an appreciated.
People? What people? If only it were this easy. People get fired every day and it has nothing to do with being liked or disliked. If they are fired because they are disliked, it may not even be because they are disliked by the majority, but rather the minority that has the ability to make it happen.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 02:08 PM   #22 (permalink)
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What about a contract that binds you to your employer for X number of years? Suppose you have such a contract and you make 12.50/hr with no benefits and you find a job that will pay 35.00/hr and full benefits.

Should you be prevented from taking the better job because you have a year left on your contract?

And yes, I know they exist and in some industries, leaving can be very costly for the worker.

We want to be guaranteed some measure of job security, but what about the employer?
In short, yes, to all of your questions. Give and take. I think it's fair, no?

To add to this, the salary would likely have to allow for increase over time, depending on the length of said contract. $12.50 might look ok today, but if the contract is over in 20 years, that might not even be minimum wage.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 02:09 PM   #23 (permalink)
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What about a contract that binds you to your employer for X number of years? Suppose you have such a contract and you make 12.50/hr with no benefits and you find a job that will pay 35.00/hr and full benefits.

Should you be prevented from taking the better job because you have a year left on your contract?

And yes, I know they exist and in some industries, leaving can be very costly for the worker.

We want to be guaranteed some measure of job security, but what about the employer?
Happens all the time in the entertainment industry, but these arrangements are contracts that that are subject to court review. Your example would not survive judicial review.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 02:24 PM   #24 (permalink)
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... People get fired every day and it has nothing to do with being liked or disliked. ...
A lot of the recent financial crimes might have been nipped-at-the bud if folks were protected from retaliation for reporting them.

"A court in Missouri in 1985 reviewed wrongful discharge cases that were reported between 1977 and 1984 and concluded: As many of the decided cases illustrate, the burden of the at-will employment doctrine seems to be falling most heavily and harshly upon professional and upper and middle level employees. [footnote that cites 15 cases] They have the least protection. Most are at-will employees and few have job security through union or individually negotiated contracts. They have the most to lose, frequently being the long-term employees who have the greatest responsibility and substantial investment in and the highest expectations from their careers. Often they are at an age when replacement of their life and medical insurance programs and their retirement plans are difficult or impossible. They are the most vulnerable to the improper demands of employers who find it profitable to take chances with anti-trust and consumer fraud violations, environmental pollution, health-related misconduct, defense procurement fraud, and the like. The at-will employment doctrine does not include, contemplate or require a privilege in the employer to subject its employees to the risks of civil and criminal liability that participation in such activities entails. Boyle v. Vista Eyewear, Inc., 700 S.W.2d 859, 877-878 (Mo.App. 1985)."
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Old October 17th, 2012, 03:22 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Hope all is keeping political views private, as you can be fired for expressing such.
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Old October 17th, 2012, 06:12 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Hope all is keeping political views private, as you can be fired for expressing such.
You are referring to the Koch bros letter that was totally misrepresented for political reasons and never threatened to fire anyone?
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Old October 18th, 2012, 04:05 AM   #27 (permalink)
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You are referring to the Koch bros letter that was totally misrepresented for political reasons and never threatened to fire anyone?
The facts are, political views of workers can be a cause to dismiss, being a government or union employee gives some protection.

Please cite a reference to Koch letter.
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Old October 18th, 2012, 07:03 AM   #28 (permalink)
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My bad. I assumed you were referencing a letter that has been circulated by numerous liberal sources claiming the Koch brothers threatened to fire anyone who voted for a Democrat. Anyone who actually reads the letter can see that is not what it says, but it hasn't stopped liberals from perpetrating the lie. I assumed that was what you were referencing. I was wrong. Apologies.
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Old October 18th, 2012, 08:08 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Prior to Citizens United S.C. decision direct communications to employees about voting was prohibited. It's not only the Koch Industries that are "urging" how employees vote. Employees are also having social media monitored.

The bottom line is one's political views may be used to terminate employment. In light of monopolistic and oligopolistic industries, so much for "free citizens".

It appears that when any media questions the wealthy elite, you term it liberal, is that your term for investigating journalism ?

Since you brought up Koch Industries, here's an article, doesn't appear that employees were "legally" threatened in mass, but that speaks more concerning the law.

Koch Sends Pro-Romney Mailing to 45,000 Employees While Stifling Workplace Political Speech (Update) - In These Times

"In August, Portland-based Georgia Pacific worker Travis McKinney, a member of the Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific (an affiliate of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union), learned about the social media policy the hard way during his yearly evaluation.

When McKinney applied for a foreman job at the plant in May, he says, his supervisor informed him that a higher-up said he wouldn’t get the job because he was “too political.” “They said I should be aware of what I am posting online,” says McKinney. A subsequent August evaluation of McKinney [PDF] noted that “supervisors feel Travis gets caught up in the politics of the day which can be distraction.”

McKinney says it wasn’t hard to deduce what they meant. He was quoted in the 2011 Nation article I wrote with Mark Ames, talking about how the Kochs pushed their libertarian “Market Based Management” principles on their workers to such an extent that the dictums were even printed on employee time cards. He had posted that article and other political articles about the Koch brothers online.

While Charles Koch has often referred to the Market Based Management system used to run Georgia Pacific as “the science of liberty,” many employees, such as McKinney, feel that their own liberties have been taken away by the company.

In addition to the social media policy, Georgia Pacific also demands that workers seek approval from supervisors before running for local elected office [PDF] or serving on the boards of nonprofits. Koch Industries claims such approval is necessary to prevent conflicts of interest. These policies could prohibit Georgia Pacific employees from running for local office in communities that seek to more strictly regulate the company."
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Old October 18th, 2012, 08:45 PM   #30 (permalink)
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The employees weren't threatened in any sense of the word legally or not. Did you read the letter at all? Or did you just see the headline and draw a conclusion?

You are correct that one can be terminated for their political views, but one can be terminated for their eye color or hair color or just because they don't like the color of your shoes that day.
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Old October 19th, 2012, 02:54 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Yes, serfs can be terminated on how the masters feel that day on eye, hair, shoes color. The masters know what matters is the serfs thinking, thus their control on what matters.
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Old October 19th, 2012, 06:32 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Bitter much?
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Old October 19th, 2012, 06:41 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Critical think much or bitter over the inability ? The implications of at-will as previously posted Right-to-Work=Master and Servant
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Old October 19th, 2012, 07:51 PM   #34 (permalink)
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It works both ways though. We have a guy in our company who has a high amount of knowledge on a very specialized proprietary product. There is literally no one in the world who knows more than he does about this particular aspect of our product. Because of right to work he could walk away from the job tomorrow and go work for our competitor. Because of this the company basically backs a Brinks truck up to his door every payday. If you make yourself valuable enough to your employer they will keep you around.
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Old October 19th, 2012, 08:12 PM   #35 (permalink)
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ya but why should someone bother gaining a skill when they can simply gain a union and make more money......... without the threat of having to actually earn it
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Old October 19th, 2012, 09:31 PM   #36 (permalink)
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It works both ways though. We have a guy in our company who has a high amount of knowledge on a very specialized proprietary product. There is literally no one in the world who knows more than he does about this particular aspect of our product. Because of right to work he could walk away from the job tomorrow and go work for our competitor. Because of this the company basically backs a Brinks truck up to his door every payday. If you make yourself valuable enough to your employer they will keep you around.
Believe me, he can be let go by the company. They will find someone just as knowledgeable as him! And hire the other person for less money!
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Old October 20th, 2012, 03:21 AM   #37 (permalink)
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It works both ways though. We have a guy in our company who has a high amount of knowledge on a very specialized proprietary product. There is literally no one in the world who knows more than he does about this particular aspect of our product. Because of right to work he could walk away from the job tomorrow and go work for our competitor. Because of this the company basically backs a Brinks truck up to his door every payday. If you make yourself valuable enough to your employer they will keep you around.
B.S. again, your personal observation has no basis in reality. Right-to-work is not relevant. Proprietary product is the key to your fallacy.

What is the criteria to be valuable to said employer ? Who judges this ?
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Old October 20th, 2012, 08:11 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Believe me, he can be let go by the company. They will find someone just as knowledgeable as him! And hire the other person for less money!
Pretty much everyone in the company feels that if they do anything like that they are shooting themselves in the foot. Yes they could let him go (and yes he could go somewhere else on his own) but the company would be hard pressed to find someone as knowledgeable as him about something that he designed. Yeah, they could pay someone else less money, but that person won't have the same experience and knowledge level. People need to get off the poor me persecution complex IMO.
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Old October 20th, 2012, 01:32 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Most of the skills we have are developed at work, even those with highly specialized educations. Anyone can be and will be replaced and business's plan for this event or possibility.

People should not be persecuted for their political, religious, etc beliefs via government, corporations, etc. There is a long history of such persecutions, so to avoid a "poor me" persecution complex, stop the persecution and complaining about those that are stopping the persecution.
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Old October 20th, 2012, 03:30 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Most of the skills we have are developed at work, even those with highly specialized educations. Anyone can be and will be replaced and business's plan for this event or possibility.

People should not be persecuted for their political, religious, etc beliefs via government, corporations, etc. There is a long history of such persecutions, so to avoid a "poor me" persecution complex, stop the persecution and complaining about those that are stopping the persecution.
I hate to break this to you, but people have been persecuted for their beliefs ever since there have been people who had beliefs. I'm just saying. Nothing new there.
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Old October 20th, 2012, 05:52 PM   #41 (permalink)
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This may come as a surprise to you, societies that prosper and survive have placed sanctions on those doing the persecution, nothing new, just a continuous struggle against those that practice divide and conquer tactics.
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Old October 20th, 2012, 10:04 PM   #42 (permalink)
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This may come as a surprise to you, societies that prosper and survive have placed sanctions on those doing the persecution, nothing new, just a continuous struggle against those that practice divide and conquer tactics.
Workers of the world unite!!
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Old October 21st, 2012, 03:01 AM   #43 (permalink)
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Folks that want their grandchildren to survive unite.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 07:54 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Unions raise wages and improve working conditions for all, not just the union workers. Now that unions have declined, so has the middle class. Coincidence? I think not.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 01:02 PM   #45 (permalink)
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Unions are severely flawed in their own rights. They can (and do) control who does and doesn't get promoted. More than once I've seen someone who should've been fired kept around because the union wouldn't let the company fire them. Unions often get in the way of progress.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 08:16 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Unions are an organization of humans, therefore will be flawed. Still better than the alternative.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 08:32 PM   #47 (permalink)
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Unions breed mediocrity. There's no motivation for John to work harder than Joe because they will always make the same wage for the same position. No thanks, I'm not willing to work for average pay so those around me can sit on their tails and make the same as me.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 09:40 PM   #48 (permalink)
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Unions are an organization of humans, therefore will be flawed. Still better than the alternative.
Generally speaking it's best for the employers if they don't treat employees like crap. Sometimes unions ensure that happens. Sometimes they ensure it doesn't happen.
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Old October 21st, 2012, 11:08 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Let's provide a little empirical data, instead of anecdotal b.s.

How unions help all workers | Economic Policy Institute

This paper has presented evidence on some of the advantages that unionized workers enjoy as the result of union organization and collective bargaining: higher wages; more and better benefits; more effective utilization of social insurance programs; and more effective enforcement of legislated labor protections such as safety, health, and overtime regulations. Unions also set pay standards and practices that raise the wages of nonunionized workers in occupations and industries where there is a strong union presence. Collective bargaining fuels innovations in wages, benefits, and work practices that affect both unionized and nonunionized workers.

However, this review does not paint a full picture of the role of unions in workers lives, as unions enable due process in the workplace and facilitate a strong worker voice in the broader community and in politics. Many observers have stated, correctly, that a strong labor movement is essential to a thriving democracy.
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Old October 22nd, 2012, 12:39 AM   #50 (permalink)
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I don't count on a union to "protect" my right to a job with a company. I made my own job. If you can find a job that pays you for showing up whether you work or not more power to you. I won't buy from that company.
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