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The same old mistakes

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One of the depressing parts of the New Deal was its willingness to help big labor and big business, a classic case of the seen and the unseen. You see the wages and profits go up for some. It's harder to see the losses paid by consumers and non-union workers.

Labor unions today are getting more power. Part of it is the dominance of the Democrats. Part of it is a misunderstanding that labor and unions are not the same thing.

We have some economists, world-class economists, arguing for making it easier [2] for workers to unionize by banning the secret ballot.

We have the House passing a bill [3] that will make it easier to unionize Fedex.

And we have the Teamsters keeping out Mexican trucks [4].

All of these things lower the productivity of our economy and make a small group rich at the expense of others. They make the labor market less dynamic. You don't want to do that in the middle of a recession. But we appear to be intent on doing it anyway.