My uncle used to be a union man, before, in his words, he grew up and joined the military, and once participated in a planned strike. Well that strike ended up causing the company to shutter its doors for good. My uncle realized that spending his time demanding something from some one else caused him to lose what he already had. In the long term it turned out be a good thing, he was forced to join the military where he learned to speak German and Czech and had his college tuition paid for. Granted, it was a very small manufacturing company in a rural park of the country, but the fundamental lesson shouldn't be forgotten. When unions get too power, because government often will get in bed with them, it can have dire long term ramifications.
Hostess, the makers of that beloved nonfood food Twinkies, is now the latest victim of this beast; where it is now asking permission to liquidate it's business (if we really had a free market then who would have to ask permission to close?) if workers don't end their strike by Thursday, which is today. The unions are striking because the company offered a new contract that had a cut in wages, unfortunate for the workers I admit, but possibly necessary given the economy and financial situation Hostess is in. The biggest reason why it is in this situation? Because the government wouldn't let the company make concession on on its pension and heal benefits for its union employees. Now, instead of merely having smaller wages and fewer benefits, they will have no job.