LABOR; Root Causes

Article excerpt

Choosing the most destructive piece of legislation from the New Deal would be a difficult task, but the National Labor Relations Act has to be a contender. It was, and was intended to be, a setback for capitalism, and its effects linger today.

Until its passage, the employer- employee relationship historically had been clear.

Someone who had invested his own money to provide a product or service to the public for a profit, and needed labor, offered job opportunities with competitive salary or wages. Prospects chose to accept the compensation in return for their labor.

No one had an entitlement. The employer did not guarantee a lifetime job at ever-increasing wages unrelated to productivity. The employee did not guarantee he would not leave the job for higher wages or on a whim.

There was little balance in the act. Employers were not entitled to have a choice between unions. Nor were employees. If they voted union, they had one choice, and under the legislation, you could not work in a closed shop unless you joined the union. …