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Pan Jandrum
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Recruiting fresh blood

05 June 2014, 10:17
The local shop steward from NEHARU popped by today, hoping to recuit fresh blood from our ICU team. Expensive glossy brochures and membership forms were distributed, followed by a powerpoint presentation and chat laced with the oily smiles of a god-is-money preacher, enticing us to pay up in return for higher salary increases.

After presenting his wares he invited questions. So I asked why I should pay him fees which amounted to the additional increase this union had previously negotiated for us, as demonstrated in his powerpoint graphs. By not being a union member I had scored several hundred rands extra.

The oily smile slipped a bit, and he accused me of 'riding on the back of those who paid union fees'. So I pointed out that he had also earned a few extra rands by 'riding on the back of those who paid union fees'. Worse still, my extra rands were earned by default. His extra rands were earned by actively peddling false propaganda. False, because union members do not benefit from unions: they pay their extra income to their unions. Non-union members like me are the ones who benefit.

My team members are smart people. As I pointed out the benefits of not belonging to a union they quietly put aside the glossy brochures and membership forms. But then, ICU nurses know how to do their sums.

Sadly, the vast majority of union members in this country can barely count, according to our latest global maths score.

I don't really care if people get suckered into pyramid schemes because of their own greed or stupidity. Ponzi schemes, Barry Tannenbaum, Arthur Brown, Brett Kebble et al suckered billions of rands from stupid people. Stupid people get stupid outcomes. Darwin's law.

What I DO have a problem with is when the operation of pyramid schemes is protected by law. Currently Our union laws protect the union bosses, not the workers. And this legal protection has enabled union bosses to turn their unions into a mafia-type operation, with the power to influence politicians, state investments, and even government policy.

The Rand has just tanked to over 18 to the pound. We need a Maggie Thatcher. Now.
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