Bring It, Jimmy

James Hoffa, in a speech preceding Obama’s address to a Labor Day rally in Detroit, called the Tea Party out. Claiming that they were the ones who started a war on Labor, Hoffa blustered that it was time to “take the sons of ******* out.

I say, “Bring it!”

Unions, epitomized by Hoffa’s apish instincts, are based on force. No libertarian begrudges a set of workers’ rights to organize any more than they object to people forming a company by pooling capital. There is an important distinction, though. That company cannot force people to buy its products.*

Unions can and do force people to “buy” their product–labor. Laws established beginning in the late 1800’s require businesses to negotiate in good faith with unions once they are certified. In essence, that means the creators of value become beholden to the whims of union bosses.

If unions were to organize themselves in order to offer a better product, say, by educating their members in new, competitive work methods, they would bring value to employers rather than the threat of a strike. Employers would die for such workers. If, in the employer’s judgment, that union then deserved exclusivity in providing workers, so be it. Who could object to that?

Instead we have the likes of Hoffa threatening Tea Partiers. He is not changing the favored tactic of unions in so blustering; he is merely bringing it out in the open. Hoffa and his ilk would like nothing better than to round up limited-government advocates and set them on fire. What threatens him is not righteous indignance–he knows that his entire existence hinges on violence and the threat of violence. It is the audacity of some of us in saying, “No more.” We refuse to bend to the force initiated by union thugs. And yes, those with Hoffa’s mentality are thugs. Let’s listen for objections from saner quarters in the union mansion…you hear anything? Me neither.

Tea Partiers, libertarians, and other defenders of individual rights will not be cowed by the likes of Jimmy Hoffa. We will not be intimidated by any goon threatening us for standing up for our right to live and do business as we see fit. When workers come to us in the spirit of mutual cooperation and respect, they will be treated likewise. If they choose to initiate violence rather than participate honestly and peacefully in the creation of prosperity, they will be turned away in whatever manner fits their attack.

Stick that in your Labor Day speech, Jimmy.


*One notable exception is a high-ranking crony capitalist, a point that supports my argument against force in the marketplace.

About Terry Noel

I am an Associate Professor of Management and Quantitative Methods at Illinois State University. My specialty is entrepreneurship.
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