Government as Employer

Government as Employer

Government as Employer

Government as Employer

Excerpt

A generation ago, Calvin Coolidge became President of the United States as a result of the role attributed to him in the Boston police strike. From that time on, the dictum "one cannot strike against the government" became a maxim of such demonstrated political efficacy that whenever politicians, Republican or Democratic, liberal or conservative, ran into serious trouble in their employment relations, they would invoke it as a substitute for a personnel policy. The relations of government in its capacity as employer to its employees acting through their own organizations inevitably become political issues. These issues in their fundamentals, however, elude alike the methods of the practical politician and the approved techniques of the public administrator. The problem is rooted deeply in the theory of the state and extends beyond the confines of the public service personnel, becoming involved in the workings and policies of the whole labor movement. Nearly forty years ago, Nicholas Murray Butler called the problem "beyond comparison the most important which modern democracies have to face."

This book is a result of study carried on over a long period of time. Its material has come from many firsthand sources for which I am indebted to many persons, so many, in fact, that I shall not even try to name them. The list would be so long as to destroy the effectiveness of the acknowledgments. Those who helped me know who they are and they may be assured that I appreciate their cooperation. I cannot, however, close this preface without mention of my friends and colleagues, Professors Emanuel Stein and William J. Ronan, whose incessant nagging, carried on in . . .

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