BY TODD SCHOLL
Disclaimer - The views expressed in all CEWL Views articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The SCEA or NEA. We encourage you to share your comments and feedback.
McMaster's recent State of the State address included numerous anti-union comments.
He stated, "One thing we do not need is more labor unions. We have gotten where we are without them (LOL), and we do not need them now. We are a right to work state. We have the lowest union membership in the country.
However, our prosperity – and that of generations of South Carolinians to come – face a clear and present danger from the big labor unions. They have crippled and distorted the progress and prosperity of industries and cities in other states. It has taken years, but they have done it. And now, their membership is at an all-time low and falling. So now they are looking at us – and other booming southeastern states – none of which want or need labor unions."
Well...Henry, let's take a look at where we've gotten without them.
This is from a September 2023 article by Patrick McCreless, "So, where does South Carolina fall among states best suited for young professionals just out of college?
The Palmetto State ranks 45th in the U.S., the report shows. In fact, nearly all of the bottom 10 worst states on the list are in the South."
Below are the rankings South Carolina got in each category that earned the state its overall score.
Job market and work conditions: 45th
Crime and safety: 34th
Workplace diversity: 39th
The Top 10 states for young professionals?
Every single one of these top ten ARE NOT RIGHT TO WORK states.
The bottom 10?
Every single one of these bottom ten ARE RIGHT TO WORK states.
Do you understand? You've been gaslighted into believing that unions are bad so people like McMaster can make deals with corporations who want to generate more profit by exploiting labor. They want to go to the states where leaders will let them exploit labor most. They frame it as creating jobs, but what kind of future can our kids create when those jobs don't allow them to organize to ensure they are paid fairly and provided reasonable working conditions?
We are dooming future generations of Americans to a life where they are required to work more for less. It is a race to the bottom. Corporations want to know, who will allow me to exploit labor the most? Let's set up shop there!
If you expect a company, whose primary directive is to increase profits, to concern itself with better pay and working conditions, you are deluded. Capitalism only continues to work by getting more out of labor for less. Without unions, that dynamic will not change.
And TEACHERS!!! This is what has happened to your profession! You are being asked to do more and more each year, yet your compensation does not match that additional workload! This has happened because you have toothless organizations attempting to advocate on your behalf when you need TEETH. A barking dog scares nobody when you know it can't bite. This is why, if you want to save your profession, you MUST join a union. You must come together and collectively demand what you deserve. Instead, thousands of teachers in SC buy cheap insurance and hope that someone else saves them. Hey, at least you have a "choice" right?
The DJIA is at record highs, yet the minimum wage remains unchanged at $7.25/hour. Billionaires have seen MASSIVE influxes in wealth, but teachers are forced to work second and third jobs just to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. Teacher salary hasn't even kept up with inflation.
McMaster and his donors want your labor, but they have no interest in sharing their wealth with you. They want to do the bare minimum. They want YOU to pay for your medical care. They now want YOU to pay for your child's education. And they want to compensate you as little as possible for your hard work so that corporations and their shareholders can profit even more. But, hey, at least you have a job. Stop complaining and get back to work!
Capitalism, unchecked by the people, unchallenged by unions and their collective power, WILL create more and more exploitation. There is no end to their greed. And as soon as your labor is no longer needed (replaced by AI or machine) your well-being will mean nothing to them. You will be discarded as readily and easily as your phone's last operating system.
You can buy Henry's manipulative rhetoric and be distracted by their attempts to divide us over religion, race, and social issues, but to do so is condemn future generations to lives of not just "quiet desperation," but "loud desperation" while the wealthy elite laugh at your willingness to buy the "snake oil" they keep selling.