Glenn Reynolds notes the silence from the mainstream media. Most of the media bias comes in what they choose not to cover. I’ve always been a bit ambivalent about right-to-work, because in an ideal world, if employers and employees wanted to get together and negotiate a closed shop, they should be free to do so. But the fact is that Unions enjoy significant government protections. Employers are forced to collectively bargain with employees if employees vote to do so. Without right-to-work, Employees who don’t vote for collective bargaining can be forced into unions under threat of their jobs.
In most right-to-work schemes, which were authorized under the Taft-Harley Act of 1947, employees who opt out of the union are still covered by collective bargaining agreementsÂ negotiated by the union, and the unions are required to represent workers who opt out. This is the free rider problem the unions have so eloquently pointed out (with shouting and fists). If they weren’t acting like violent thugs, they might have a point. I tend to think you should not be forced into collective bargaining against your will, and I agree with right-to-work from that point of view. But I also think the unions have a point about the free rider problem. If you leave a union, you should be required to independently bargain with your employer, and the union should have no obligation to represent you as an employee.