Marybeth Hicks

Spurred on by the words of state Rep. Douglas A. Geiss, a Democrat who said on the House floor that the new law would “undo 100 years of labor relations. And there will be blood. We will relive the Battle of the Overpass” (referring to the famous 1937 standoff between the UAW and Ford Motor Co.), protesters on the capital lawn tore down a tent belonging to Americans for Prosperity.

Kind of a scary moment for the AFP volunteers who stood beneath it.

But violence and intimidation no longer work to bolster union support, even here, in this bastion of “unionism.”

To understand why their fear-mongering is failing, just follow the money. While unions still collect millions of dollars in Michigan, the Mackinac Center reveals some locals spend exactly zero on “representation” expenses, this according to filings required by the National Labor Relations Board.

Consider as well that Michigan teachers — whom the Michigan Education Association claims are woefully underpaid — pay as much as $635 per year in dues. That doesn’t include optional fees for political activism, plus dues to national and local affiliates.

When the state no longer requires unionization for employment and no longer permits withholding of dues (or “representation fees” for nonmembers), watch how quickly employees realize the “Freedom to Work” means freedom to keep their hard-earned money.

If unions are so crucial, they must prove themselves to the folks who have been forced to support them for so long. Meanwhile, the rest of us are going to shake off the shackles and see what happens to our downtrodden state economy.

My money is on our One Tough Nerd.


Marybeth Hicks

Marybeth Hicks is the author of Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom (Regnery Publishers, 2011).