Conservatives are cheering the passage of the Michigan "Right-to-Work" laws. They think, finally, we have given the progressives a black eye in the heart of liberal-progressive-union controlled territory. If you think this, you should really go read the law, and then consider these points:
I am certainly no supporter of Unions. But I am a bigger opponent of unjust government force.
It is true that Unions have taken hold of government, and gotten unjust laws passed that give them an advantage over employers. The correct solution is to repeal those unjust laws - NOT to pass more unjust freedom-killing laws.
A Union contract in the free market is simply one that makes one private organization (the union) the exclusive supplier of labor to another private organization (the employer). If such an agreement is entered into voluntarily on both sides, with neither side exercising force, there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
Exclusive contracts exist all around us - for example soft drink suppliers such as Coke or Pepsi frequently enter exclusive contracts with restaurant or theater chains.
If an employer voluntarily agrees to that contact, then joining a union simply becomes a condition of employment at that company. When you become employed at a company, you are agreeing to a whole set of rules and policies that the company has a right to request of you.
They can, for example, tell you that if you want to work here, you have to wear this funny hat. If you don't want to wear the hat, you face the choice of finding employment elsewhere, wearing the hat anyway, or starting your own company that competes with them, and where you DO NOT require people to wear funny hats.
You don't have the choice of running to a bunch of thugs with guns (the government) and having them remove the employer's funny-hat policy through force.
For those who say that an exclusive union contract violates an employee's right to work - you are operating from a deadly fallacy. If you claim that there is some sort of right-to-work that allows you to coercively compel an employer to behave a certain way, then you must also accept the progressive's notion that there are rights to food, healthcare, or a "living wage" that compel you to provide those things. There is no difference between these false concepts. And each of these ersatz rights are used by one side to justify force against the other.
The state of our country today exists after more than a century of government using new unjust laws to try to correct or counter-balance problems created by previous unjust laws. These Right-to-Work laws are just more of the same.
If, instead, we were to allow unions and corporations to exist without the exercise of coercive force, and we were to allow these private organizations to voluntarily enter into agreements or contracts with one another, I believe we would prove once and for all whether unions are a benefit or a curse. And we would certainly be back on the road to freedom!