Today's Cannon: Community, Unions, & Recidivism
Sep 11, 2018 | 144 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Connecting today’s news with the research and opinion you need from TPPF experts.
 

Remembering

What to Know: Today is the anniversary of the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. In the aftermath of the disaster, Americans came together.

“In one way, the disaster of 9/11 did something magnificent: It united the states. We weren’t Democrats or Republicans,” reads a moving editorial in the Coeur d’Alene Press. “We weren’t white or black or Hispanic. We weren’t old or young, rich or poor, North or South, brilliant or stupid. We were Americans, and for a time, we pulled together. We leaned on one another, propped each other up, dispensed hugs and accepted them gratefully. That’s something the terrorists, who had no idea their attack would be so crippling, never counted on.”

 

The TPPF Take: As the editorial notes, Americans should work to rebuild our fractured civil life -- even without such a tragedy to bring us together.

“Americans have always disagreed, but the current polarization feels extreme – and troubling – to many of us,” says TPPF’s Kevin Roberts. “As we remember everything and everyone we lost in the 9/11 attacks, let’s also remember the sense of community we felt in the aftermath. We can and must regain that.”
 
For more on the role of community in American public life, listen to The Foundation Podcast.
 

Union Dues

What to Know: Alongside calls for higher minimum wages, there are increasing calls for more unions, even in right-to-work states such as Texas.

“In most occupations, union membership translates into higher pay,” writes business columnist Mitchell Schmurman in the Dallas Morning News. “Union workers are more likely to be offered medical coverage, retirement plans, life insurance and paid sick days. They often have more job security, thanks to seniority rules and outsourcing restrictions. The rub is that union jobs are relatively rare, especially in Texas. Fewer than 5 percent of workers in the state are union members, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nationwide, the union rate is twice as high. And it’s higher still in many states, including New York, California, Illinois and Ohio. Union opponents are quick to note that those states often lag in job growth while low-union states are big job creators.”

The TPPF Take: Texas’ status as the job creation engine of the U.S. is in part due to it being a right-to-work state.

“Union dominance of a labor market comes at a cost, and that cost is fewer jobs and fewer opportunities for Americans,” says TPPF’s Bill Peacock. “Texas lawmakers should take the next step, which is ending government collection of union dues for public sector employees.”
 
For more on unions, click here.
 

Outside the Box

What to Know: In Michigan, former inmates don’t have to check a box on occupational licensing forms stating they’ve been convicted of a felony. This should boost their chances of finding jobs.

“The state of Michigan is no longer asking for job applicants seeking certain occupational licenses to check a box saying they have been convicted of a felony,” reports 9 & 10 News of Cadillac, Michigan. “Gov. Rick Snyder announced Friday that the Dept. of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs has removed the box from occupational and construction code licensing applications.”

 

The TPPF Take: Michigan is making it easier for ex-offenders to stay out of prison.

“By making it easier for otherwise qualified people to obtain an occupational license even if they made a mistake in their past, Michigan will not only be more prosperous but also safer since we know that employment is one factor in reducing recidivism,” says TPPF’s Marc Levin.
 
For more on occupational licensing and recidivism, click here.
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