History of Employers' Associations in the United States

History of Employers' Associations in the United States

History of Employers' Associations in the United States

History of Employers' Associations in the United States

Excerpt

The fact that there has been available no history of employers' associations in the English language is enough justification for the appearance of this book. The additional fact that all histories of tabor movements have disregarded completely or minimized the significance of organized employers and so gave highly erroneous conceptions as to the actual conditions in labor-management relations through the years, only reinforces the need for this history. The third fact that only recently in economic discussions have relationships received the attention their importance merits, still further warrants the writing of a book in this field that brings out those relationships, and the actions and counteractions between the organized employers and organized employees. So, while this book is primarily a history of employers' associations, functionally it is a history of labor-management relations as well as of associations primarily and of unions as a necessity to a full understanding of the forces at work.

To most persons, employers' associations are "bad" organizations which keep the "underdog" workmen from getting better wages, hours, and working conditions in order that "bloated" employers can "profiteer" off the misery of working men and women. To what extent, if any, is this conception true? Just how have these associations functioned and what have been the motives that governed those functions? Have they been merely instruments of obstruction to the labor movement and the progress of the masses upward? Even in the minds of students of the labor movement, employers' associations are thought of in relation to blacklisting unionists and fostering "iron-clad" or "yellow-dog", contracts. Surely, there is much need for enlightenment on these organizations and their functions as they relate to the development of our present economic system. How much of this system is due to their activities? Is it probably better or worse because they functioned so extensively in making the system what it is?

This book makes no pretense of being a complete history of employers' associations, or even of the details of the activities mentioned. It has intended to be illustrative, and the selection of the . . .

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