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Unions in the 21st Century: A Potent Weapon Against Inequality

Unions in the 21st Century: A Potent Weapon Against Inequality

Jared Bernstein, Dean Baker

The topic of economic inequality can appear complex, with many nuanced causes and outcomes. But while the two of us actively engage in that debate, we also strongly believe that there is one overarching factor that must not be, but often is, overlooked: worker bargaining power. On Labor Day, this problem of the long-term decline in workers’ ability to bargain for a fair share of the growth they have helped generate deserves a closer look.

Given that we’re talking in the context of the USA, Americans had better lobby to get legislation passed that makes it unlawful to bust unions. Otherwise you haven’t got a chance of seeing that “Potent Weapon” emerge.