Increases in productivity—not artificial increases in labor prices—are the key to economic growth and rising wages. For most of its history, America has enjoyed strong economic growth thanks to the flourishing of dynamic and flexible labor markets.
Individuals and businesses in the United States have benefited greatly from this atmosphere, which affords them the freedom to adapt to changing market conditions.
Despite this success, obsolete New Deal–era labor laws and regulations are becoming a drag on the economy. The old adversarial master–servant model of labor relations has little to offer the 21st-century workforce, which is characterized by horizontal corporate structures, significant job mobility, and instant, constant communications.
However, rather than adapt to the changing economy, regulators are doubling down on enforcement of outdated national labor policy in a transparent effort to prop up labor unions, major political donors to Democrats.
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Department of Labor (DOL) are the key federal labor regulators. Recent regulatory efforts by those agencies have sought to restrict flexible work arrangements and well-established business-to-business relationships, while giving favorable treatment to labor unions in order to aid their organizing efforts. Members of Congress must resist efforts to politicize regulation, adjudication, and legislation in labor relations. The threats are quite real for franchising, temporary staffing, independent contracting and subcontracting, interning, volunteering, supplying, and outsourcing.
In this chapter:
- Reform the Fair Labor Standards Act
- Reverse the Department of Labor’s Overtime Rule
- Reform the Worker Classification Process
- Improve Oversight of the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division
- Reform the National Labor Relations Act and National Labor Relations Board
- Outlaw Union Violence
- Prevent Implementation of the NLRB’s Ambush Election Rule
- Prevent Implementation of the NLRB’s New Joint Employer Standard
- Protect Worker Pensions by Reforming the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s Multiemployer Program
- Protect State and Local Taxpayers by Promoting Better Public Pension Governance