Since I believe in a free market capitalist system, I support pblic sector unions. Any othe rposition is socialism.
A government is an economic player. When it comes to hiring workers, you can either treat them like any other potnetial employer -- or place the government in a priivleged position, not subject to the samer rules as everybody else (again, tht'ss socialism).
The source of funding (taxpayer money) is not relevant. Management, whether of a government or a company, has the responsibility to spend money responsibly. Not look at the other end -- the worker/job applicant. In a free market economy, the worker bargains for the best deal from an employre he/she can get. AGAIN, saying a worker shldn't do that when the job happens to e a government position is placing the government in a privileged position, exempting it from esponding to free market forces such as supply and demand.
Wherre unions come in is simple. Granted, a particular union cna be abusinve -- but so can particular government managers. The union provides a check aganst the greater power of managers who by definitionn are a collectie group by enabling workers to act together in bargining. Also --and this is KEY -- once an agreement is reached, it is secured by a binding legal contract --just as is any othe ragreement in a free market economy. Saying thee should be no contract that is neotiated on an equal basis and binding on both parties is to adopt a fundamentally socialist view that posits determining wages based on edicts handed down by faceless bureaucrats -- the system used in the old Soviet Union where therr wer no labor unions.
Now--aout current situations. A LOT of state governments are facing a crisis becasue they have agreed to terms -- pensions, wages, benefits -- they cannot afford. Most often, thhis is due to agreeing to long term benefits withot mandating full funding (shifting the cost to future payers, in other words) or to signing off on above-market wages and benefits.
That's not the unions' fault. They simply sent in the best negotiators they could find to cut the best deal they could get. State governments could have done the same. Bu tthe bottom line is they didn't . They got out-bargained. What we need is not "bannign public sector unions." Whatwe need is to fire the so-called managerment people who signed off on those contracts and get some people in state government with the balls to negotiate hard and come up with fair but affordable conttracts. If the bureaucrats now whining about unions had done tha t in the first place -- if they had done their jobs -- we wouldn't have this problem.
The answer isn't socialism. It's getting negotiators who cna drive a good bargain in a free labor market instead of hiding behind socialist laws banning public sector unions.