Union Membership Drops in Montana, 100 Year National Low

Aaron Flint posted on January 27, 2015 11:46 :: 1200 Views

Montana saw a decline in union membership during 2014, but check out the numbers out of North Dakota.  This, as union membership nationally is at a 100-year low.

The Daily Signal: Union Membership Rate Falls to 100-Year Low

New information from the federal government suggests workers’ interest in unions continues to fall, with union membership reaching its lowest rate in 100 years.

According to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics today, the union membership rate fell to 11.1 percent, with just 14.6 million wage and salaried workers maintaining membership.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of union membership for public-sector workers last year was 35.7 percent, compared to just 6.6 percent for the private sector.

SayAnythingBlog.com: North Dakota Union Membership Down Roughly 18 Percent In 2014

The past year wasn’t a good one for organized labor in North Dakota. The state, which has right-to-work laws, isn’t exactly a hotbed of union activity but even the meager foothold organized labor has in the state shrunk in 2014.

According to numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, union membership among full-time wage and salaried workers in the state declined about 18 percent from around 22,000 union members in 2013 to about 18,000 in 2014.

Union membership is down in Montana as well, from 13% to 12.7% of employed wage and salary workers.

By the way- check out this interesting news from Fox News First: END OF EXTENDED UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS CREDITED FOR JOB SURGE

WashEx: “Sixty percent of job creation in 2014 was caused by the expiration of unemployment benefits, according to a new working paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research. In late 2013, a standoff between Republicans and Democrats led to the abrupt expiration of long-term unemployment benefits. Democrats warned that the expiration would have disastrous ramifications, but Republicans had long argued that allowing Americans to collect unemployment benefits for an indefinite period of time provided a disincentive for them to work. The new working paper found that the expiration of benefits was responsible for the creation of over 1.8 million jobs. Nearly 1 million of those jobs were created by workers who would have otherwise stayed out of the labor force if unemployment benefits had been extended. Overall, almost 3 million jobs were created in 2014.”

The Daily Signal: In Index of Economic Freedom, U.S. Is 12th Freest Economy

There is no single formula for overcoming challenges to economic development and maintaining economic dynamism, but one thing is clear: Around the globe, governments that respect and promote economic freedom provide greater opportunities for innovation, progress and human empowerment. The 2015 Index of Economic Freedom, released today, tracks policy developments affecting economic freedom across the world by looking at four primary areas: rule of law (property rights, freedom from corruption), government size (fiscal freedom, government spending), regulatory efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, and monetary freedom), and market openness (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom).

The United States continues to be only the 12th-freest economy, seemingly stuck in the ranks of the “mostly free,” trailing such comparable economies as Australia, New Zealand and Switzerland.

Here’s another interesting piece from Rob Port’s SayAnythingBlog: Is Dirty North Dakota Snow Causing Climate Change?

As you might expect, one of the causes of the dirty snow is oil and gas activity in western North Dakota (all the trucks and construction have been kicking up a lot of dirt and dust), but do these conclusions about the impact on the climate really make sense?

“There is an immediate problem with this oil industry blame narrative – oil production in the state didn’t start to become significant and increase dramatically until 2008,” writes Sierra Rayne at the American Thinker. “In the seven years since this time, four have had below normal temperatures.  Add to that a correlation toward cooling – not warming – in the state’s annual temperatures over the last three decades, coupled with no significant trend since 1970, either, and the dirty snow hypothesis appears to run into trouble.”

Rayne points out another problem too: North Dakota’s growing season has actually been getting shorter. She notes that while the growing seasons for the Grand Forks and Fargo areas have increased over the last century, according to data from the National Weather Service, the growing season for the Bismarck and Williston areas (which encompass over 80 percent of the state) have declined…

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