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Friday, January 28, 2005

More on Labor Unions and Germany’s Future

Some backing for views expressed earlier.

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The January 31st edition of Forbes Magazine carries a Current Events column by British historian Paul Johnson titled Germany’s Dismal Future.

Mr. Johnson describes the woeful conditions besetting Germany and her citizens.  He writes:

“These figures are close to those of 1932, at the depths of the Great Depression and just before Hitler came to power. So many being unemployed was one reason Hitler’s bid for power was successful.”  This echoes the view expressed in Will the Nazi’s Make a Comeback?.

Mr. Johnson attributes Germany’s predicament to three factors, of which the first is:

“The power wielded by its old-fashioned trade unions. German unions insist on short hours, high wages, immense social security benefits and conditions of work that make productivity increases virtually impossible. Their stranglehold on the economy is akin to that exercised by British unions before Margaret Thatcher smashed them in the early 1980s.”

A similar view regarding the effect of labor unions was projected in Labor Unions: Socialism’s Shock Troops.