The problem with Yglesias’ middle-ground alternative is that it’s just as unrealistic as Cowen’s reliance on the free market. Labor unions simply don’t have the power they once did to enforce new labor standards. Today, only 11% of American workers belong to a union. So in order to advance labor rights in the 21st century, the government must step-in and fill the void because the market is not budging
No, Paid Sick Leave Isn’t “Government Intervention”
Nick Cassella
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This is true. I think Yglesias’ larger point, based on his other pieces, is that the situation speaks to exactly why we need labour unions just as much as we needed them in the hey day of the labour movement. The decline of unionised work is a major factor in why we haven’t made gains in some of these other work-life balance issues.

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