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Labor Day

September 7, 2020

Today is Labor Day, which is sometimes jokingly described as the day when Americans honor workers by taking the day off work. I hope you enjoy the holiday with your family, and enjoy this special Labor Day edition of my newsletter.

These days, it’s easy for free-market conservatives to distrust labor unions because of their corrupt leaders or one-sided politics. For instance, Joe Biden wants to take the much-hated AB-5 law that was destroying California’s gig economy nationwide because that would greatly empower labor unions while harming individual workers who have benefited from the freedoms offered by new innovative technologies to create their own jobs and pick their working hours.

But Labor Day reminds us of that historic era when unions were more interested in protecting workers than in protecting the jobs of union bosses and Democrats. Labor Day observances unofficially began around the turn of the 20th century as a celebration of the union movement, which was fighting truly dangerous and exploitative working conditions, not to mention violent strike-busting tactics. Those kinds of conditions are not beneficial to labor or management.

Workers who get good pay, reasonable hours and a safe workplace are motivated to work harder and make their employers profitable. America’s prosperity and world leader status were the result of shared benefits between labor and management. Recruiting good employees, treating them well, and giving them a stake in the outcome is good business. When labor and management are partners, everyone wins: stockholders, management, workers, and most importantly, consumers.

Before the Chinese unleashed a virus that knocked the wind out of our economy, President Trump wasn't just helping to bring back jobs, but the strong job market and record low unemployment meant companies had to offer higher pay and more benefits to attract good workers. That's how getting government out of the way of job creation benefits everyone. It can come back just as quickly, if the voters don't fall for lies from the proponents of big government and vote against their best interests.

So business owners, value your workers. Workers, treat management as your partner in success. And slackers, goldbricks and goof-offs, please go work for a company that’s already on the decline, so you can just go down together.