The NMB and the Bureaucratic Mess They've Created
As we all know, the National Mediation Board (NMB) is a government agency full of unelected bureaucrats looking to promote unions. Most recently the Board worked on further limiting workers’ rights by changing union election rules.
The political allies of the unions are now trying to explain that the NMB oversees union elections in the same manner that Congressional elections are held. However, we all know that there are inherent differences between these elections. These include unions lack of term limits, the fact that elections last several weeks and the voting members can cast their ballot from home over the phone, and finally that the state Right to Work laws do not apply to the transportation industries because of the Railway Labor Act.
We find serious fault in the Railway Labor Act and would also like to see legislation that would give workers’ the right to spend money as they want; instead of having to pay dues to a union they don’t want to be part of. Taking advantage the NMB’s new rules, the Allied Pilots Association attempted to short-circuit the bankruptcy process and promote short-term benefits while threatening all employees over the longer term.
Explaining what is really going on here, Fortune notes:
“Merging with a smaller carrier that has its own severe labor troubles looks far more painful and disruptive to American employees than would be the case if they just stuck it out with their current bosses. Given all the question marks surrounding this pact, the unions' move here looks more like a bargaining tactic than an earnest defection in what has become a high stakes game of chicken with American management over wages, benefits and pensions.”
APA is using American Airlines’s bankruptcy—financial problems they undoubtedly contributed to—as leverage to secure concessions the company can ill-afford to make. We’ve seen this type of behavior before, unions would rather layoff teachers than negotiate pay cuts. Due to unfair NMB rules and cutthroat practices, unions have dominated the transportation sector for decades. Congress should allow for worker decertification, right-to-work laws, and return to traditional election rules under the Railway Labor Act.