Labor productivity and politics

The much waited review of the” Work Choices” legislation will be released today, after the Minister has had it for a month considering the implications.

It will be absorbing to watch and listen to the “argy bargy” and strident demands of the various union dependent officials and politicians speaking out against the measures increasingly being taken by management that have as their objective recapturing their right to manage, and to reflect the current reality in those decisions. The recent Qantas lock-out and the current noise about labor visas for mining workers spring to mind.

Overall union membership in the economy is around 18%, only 13% if you take out the unionized  public sector, against figures of mid 30’s in the 1990’s, and immediately post war, 65%.

Are these noises the last gasp of the doomed?

It is hard to think otherwise than that the power of the 18% is entirely because of the formal ties with the labor party, and the compulsory voting system in this country forcing donkeys to vote.   I wonder what the voter turnout would be in a voluntary voting system, and what that may do to the existing two party structure.

As an advisor to a number of small businesses, I see every day the depredations emanating from the absurdly biased regulations surrounding employment. Were they to be removed, employment would immediately increase.

There are structural changes in employment going on, specifically there are far more self employed than even just a few years ago, many would not go back to the dark side, and self  employment is a disincentive to the employment of others.

At the recent  ACTU congress in Sydney, while trying to absorb the reality that less than 18% of the workforce is unionised, and this number is dropping, propelled by the structural changes in the economy, dumb regulations, and the odious nature of the implications of the Craig Thompson revelations, the union officialdom stood on the podium ,collectively  looking like King Canute. 

It is in the county’s interest to have many self employed people  they are more entrepreneurial, risk takers, they produce value, not consume it, and yet the policies being pursued seem to mitigate against contractors and the self employed.


About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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