On Labor Unions and Governments Creating Unemployment


This is a good example of how labor unions and governments create unemployment by restricting entrants into a specific industry.  This keeps prices artificially high (lower supply of workers relative to market demand for their services forces up wage rates above what the marketplace would otherwise have to pay) and benefits those ‘inside’ the union at the expense of everyone else, including those who remain unemployed since they can’t become truck drivers in this case.  Greece is finally coming to terms with this and is opening up industries to competition.

Papandreou said yesterday that the government would move ahead with plans to open up professions such as trucking that are bound by rules which prevent new entrants and drive up prices.

About 33,000 truckers, including tanker owners, are protesting government plans to open up the freight industry and issue new licenses.

Other professions to be revamped include civil engineers, public notaries and pharmacists. No new licenses for trucking have been issued since the early 1970s, according to the Transport Ministry, which has driven up the price of acquiring an existing license.

And then on the ‘rule of law’…

“The refusal of private truck drivers to comply with the decisions of the state to mobilize vehicles and personnel is a heavy blow to the rule of law,” according to an e-mailed statement today from the office of Minister of State Haris Pamboukis in Athens. “It harms the social fabric and will be immediately dealt with.”

Truckers who fail to return to work will face criminal charges and their licenses will be revoked, according to the statement.

Authorities yesterday began serving papers requesting truck owners to resume work or face penalties, including the seizure of licenses or vehicles.

Bloomberg

So it is now a ‘crime’ to choose to not go to work?  Seems that is the opposite of the ‘rule of law’.  If a government can make not working a crime, then what that really is in practice is communism… if someone doesn’t work for the ‘social good’, then they will be punished.  It means that the ‘state’ owns you and you must do as commanded or else face consequences.

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