The Seamen’s Strike in England was disastrously prolonged, suggests Punch, because of an unbending, uncompromising attitude by all parties to the controversy.
The American Machinists’ Strike which grounded five airlines was disastrously prolonged, in many minds, for the same reason.
What goes on here? It seems that justice can be served only as everybody bends to the whims and desires of those who hold power. To what a low estate has justice descended: what’s right is the outcome of bending to ambitions for power!
Who likes to compromise? Employees are as averse to backing down as are employers. Yet, there is no other recourse than compromise in managed or socialistic economies — as in England and the U. S. A. When coercive powers rule the economy, adjustments of the numerous powers must be ceded by the warring factions. With failure to compromise, the economy comes to a halt. Further, compromised or dictated adjustments are no more than temporary expedients, for no one has the knowledge or the ability to accurately predict the future.
No one likes to compromise, nor should anyone be expected to do so. Be done with the planned economy and its inevitable compromises and failures. Give no more coercive power to a labor union than to a chamber of commerce. Free the market! Let government protect all willing exchange and inhibit all unwilling exchange —and not indulge in the forbidden exchange itself!
In the free market, humiliating compromise gives way to a gratifying freedom of choice by everyone, be he employee or employer, consumer or producer. If one supplier’s price for a can of beans or his system of management doesn’t suit, you have the freedom to shop around. And, if he doesn’t like your bid for beans or your services on your terms, he has the freedom to look around.
Why compromise when we could be free to choose?