Submitted by Sovereign Man Blueprint
The US House of Representatives has passed a bill called the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act. If the Senate passes the bill and the President signs it, this would usher in a union labor coup.
It would become illegal for employers to attempt, in any way, to influence employees to not join a labor union or participate in collective bargaining. The bill would overturn right to work laws in 27 states. These laws prohibit unions from requiring workers to join a union, and prohibit unions from forcing non-union members to pay dues.
The bill would also force employers to share employees' private information with union organizers:
“a voter list to a labor organization... shall include the names of all employees in the bargaining unit and such employees’ home addresses, work locations, shifts, job classifications, and, if available to the employer, personal landline and mobile telephone numbers, and work and personal email addresses.”
And it would allow unions to do away with secret voting, leaving plenty of room for unions to intimidate workers who don’t fall in line.
What this means:
Unions are a big reason why American education has declined substantially against the rest of the world, why it is so hard to hold police accountable for crimes they commit on duty, and why the costs of American-made products are so high.
Labor regulations help unions form a protectionist racket which keeps certain people out of jobs, weakens competition for the best employees, and raises costs for both employers and consumers. It seems like most people realize this, since union membership has been declining for decades. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, union membership has declined by almost 3.5 million members since 1983, while the labor force has grown by about 50 million workers.
State laws, like the ones threatened by this legislation, protected workers against unions bullying them into joining and paying dues. So here comes the giant union bailout from the federal government— using the employees’ money.
Regulations like these are bad for the business owner, bad for the employees, bad for the consumers, and bad for the economy. Unions gain more power, but everyone else is left with less choice and less prosperity.
What you can do about it:
There are still some places in the world where the freedom to run a business still exists. Here are a couple jurisdictions which actually go out of their way to attract businesses, and position themselves as commerce and innovation-friendly environments.
Since gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, Estonia has positioned itself as a relatively free market jurisdiction. Over the past few years, Estonia has developed e-residency. It’s not actual residency— Estonia sells it as a “digital nation for global citizens.”
They have tailored the product to entrepreneurs, freelancers, digital nomads, and business owners who want remote exposure to European markets, funding, and services.
E-residency is open to anyone in the world, and allows the e-resident to register a business in Estonia. This has certain advantages, like the ability to open a business bank account in the European Union, which could allow non-EU residents to do business in the region more easily.
E-residents also have access to to an online marketplace where they can use services to launch and grow a business. For example, different companies which offer accounting, payment processing, legal advice, and insurance are all available through the e-residency portal. In a sense, Estonia is providing secure online infrastructure for online businesses.
United Arab Emirates
The UAE is home to dozens of free trade and special economic zones, which offer special tax rates and reduced regulation to various types of businesses. For example, Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) is a free trade zone with 0% corporate and personal income tax rates, which allows 100% foreign ownership of companies established in the zone. Companies can be owned by a single or multiple owners, and the zone does not restrict the movement of capital out of DMCC.
You do need a physical presence in the zone, but the good news is an approved application to set up your business in the zone also comes with residency for the owner. Most zones operate in a similar way, but cater to specific industries, like e-commerce, media, or technology.
This isn’t to say that either of these options is necessarily right for everyone. The point is that while some governments are making it harder to do business, there are always other jurisdictions happy to attract productive people.
Of course the easiest place to start a business depends on what type of business you want to run.
Industrial manufacturing might lead you to choose a place with fewer labor restrictions (see: union slams Ford for moving production to Mexico), while services and consulting businesses might be able to locate anywhere, and hire contract workers (i.e. Puerto Rico’s 4% corporate tax on businesses exporting services).
If you are in the medical profession, for example, you may want to check out the January Alert (for Sovereign Man: Confidential subscribers) on Medical tourism destinations in Latin America. The reason most of these places can offer inexpensive, high-quality healthcare is because the lack of government restrictions, which translates to easier business start-up for medical professionals.
Although it can be sad to see the US become a less friendly place for businesses and productivity, it should be encouraging that more jurisdictions are positioning themselves to attract productive people and companies.
As long as competition exists, there should always be options— with any luck, more every year.