Monday, March 4, 2019

Choke Points

     Atlas Shrugged becomes more relevant, more topical, every day:

     “Well, it’s like this, Miss Taggart,” said the delegate of the Union of Locomotive Engineers. “I don’t think we’re going to allow you to run that train.”
     Dagny sat at her battered desk, against the blotched wall of her office. She said, without moving, “Get out of here.”
     It was a sentence the man had never heard in the polished offices of railroad executives. He looked bewildered. “I came to tell you—”
     “If you have anything to say to me, start over again.”
     “Don’t tell me what you’re going to allow me to do.”
     “Well, I meant we’re not going to allow our men to run your train.”
     “That’s different.”
     “Well, that’s what we’ve decided.”
     “Who’s decided it?”
     “The committee. What you’re doing is a violation of human rights. You can’t force men to go out to get killed—when that bridge collapses just to make money for you.”
     She searched for a sheet of blank paper and handed it to him. “Put it down in writing,” she said, “and we’ll sign a contract to that effect.”
     “What contract?”
     “That no member of your union will ever be employed to run an engine on the John Galt Line.”
     “Why . . . wait a minute . . . I haven’t said—”
     “You don’t want to sign such a contract?”
     “No I—”
     “Why not, since you know that the bridge is going to collapse?”
     “I only want—”
     “I know what you want. You want a stranglehold on your men by means of the jobs which I give them—and on me, by means of your men. You want me to provide the jobs, and you want to make it impossible for me to have any jobs to provide. Now I’ll give you a choice. That train is going to be run. You have no choice about that. But you can choose whether it’s going to be run by one of your men or not. If you choose not to let them, the train will still run, if I have to drive the engine myself. Then, if the bridge collapses, there won’t be any railroad left in existence, anyway. But if it doesn’t collapse, no member of your union will ever get a job on the John Galt Line. If you think that I need your men more than they need me, choose accordingly. If you know that I can run an engine, but they can’t build a railroad, choose according to that. Now are you going to forbid your men to run that train?”

     Dagny Taggart’s assessment of the function of a labor union is dead on target. Ever since the Wagner-Taft-Hartley Act and the Norris-LaGuardia Act, the entire point of unionization has been exactly as she described it: to establish a choke point for labor, which neither the employer nor the worker can pass without union intermediation, approval...and bribery. Such choke points are the preferred target of every power-seeker who’s ever lived, whether his demesne is business, society, or government.

     A choke point that has legal recognition and enforcement attracts the avaricious attention of the very worst men in the world.

     This comes to mind this morning because of the National Popular Vote Compact (NPVC):

     The National Popular Vote Compact has been given new life after Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) said this week that he will sign a bill to have his state become the 12th state along with the District of Columbia to join the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.

     We have sounded the alarm bells about this plan to circumvent the Electoral College. The plan uses the Constitution and states’ rights to avoid a constitutional amendment to obliterate the College.

     The states making up the compact, which already includes New York, Illinois, and all the New England states except for New Hampshire, would commit to awarding their electoral votes to whoever wins the popular vote nationally, regardless of the results in the Electoral College, the Chicago Tribune reports.

     It would mean the popular vote would decide the outcome of the election, and they hope to make it happen by 2020.

     It is the state legislatures, by Constitutional dictate, that determine which electors shall represent them when the Electoral College meets on January 3 after a presidential election. Under a sufficiently inclusive NPVC, the Electoral College would lose its function of protecting the political interests of the low-population states. Indeed, had such an arrangement been in place in 2016, it would seem that Hillary Clinton would be president today. But here we come to the choke point of interest: the media, which have systematically under-reported and downplayed the extent of voting fraud and illegal voting that has taken place in recent national elections, including 2016.

     Texas has discovered nearly 100,000 persons registered to vote there who are not American citizens. California has discovered nearly 450,000. I don’t have figures for other states, but those alone should give one pause – and remember that those are the unlawfully registered voters that have been discovered, not necessarily an accurate measure of the problem. Given that the national popular vote is typically decided by a slender margin – seldom more than two or three million – how could an honest man aware of the magnitude of illegal voting sit still for the NPVC?

     Could it be any clearer why border enforcement is a high priority, or why the states must be compelled to purge their voter rolls to meet Constitutional dictates? Could it be any clearer why the Left’s relentless pursuit of its Secretary of State Project, and of the dominance of Boards of Election across the nation, are matters to be noted and opposed? Could it be any clearer that the major media, those rabid opponents of anything conservative and anyone Republican, are complicit in this scheme to undermine the Constitution?

     Just a little something to help jump-start your heart on this fine snowy Monday, March 4 morning in the year of Our Lord 2019.


mobius said...

Gee thanks...

The Engineer has decreed cycles, lemmings will lem.
Try not to get swept along.

Jonathan H said...

I've noticed that unions essentially worked themselves out of a job as they got regulations passed to implement the health and safety measures and firing/ retaliation measures that they use to use numbers to impose.

Now that they have gotten rid of their reason for being, they have to find a new reason, but most of them haven't and are paying the price for it in reduced membership (or unhappy membership).
I think these are the reasons that most union members are now government workers and most of the growth of unions is in liberal white collar industries and areas.

Dystopic said...

Your explanation of labor unions was illuminating. Nobody - not the worker, nor the businessman - may move without permission of the union.

Marxists love being middlemen and finding a nice cozy niche from which to rent-seek.