Economist: Defeat a positive for college football

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

A former chief economist at the U.S. Department of Labor thinks a ruling against football players at Northwestern is good for college football.

Saying it does not have jurisdiction, the National Labor Relations Board dismissed a ruling Monday to allow college football players at private Northwestern University to unionize. The effort was led more than a year ago by then-Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter, who said it was about protecting players and improving conditions under which they play NCAA sports.

In March 2014, a regional director of the NLRB in Chicago said the football players are effectively school employees and therefore are entitled to organize. Even so, a number of institutions including Northwestern University, the Big Ten conference and the NCAA opposed the effort.

Diana Furchtgott-Roth is a former chief economist of the U.S. Department of Labor now working for Economics21 and the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. She tells OneNewsNow that a ruling in Northwestern players' favor "would have destroyed college football."

Furchtgott-Roth

"What [NLRB] said was that it would not promote stability in labor relations if [the players] were allowed to unionize," she explains. "One reason was the overwhelming majority of competitive public colleges and universities over which the board doesn't have jurisdiction.

"So if the Northwestern University football players had been allowed to unionize, then private universities and colleges could have had unionized football players and public ones couldn't have."

In a related column for MarketWatch.com, Furchtgott-Roth calculates the amount of tax and union dues the players would have had to pay if they were able to organize. The players, she argues, would have been the "biggest losers" in the long run.

"At Northwestern, the benefits add up to about $78,000 a year. If they were employees that could be counted as income that would have to be taxed," says the economist.

"I calculate that the amount of tax and union dues they would have to pay is almost $20,000 a year. The biggest losers would be these young men who play football. No one wants to pay an extra $20,000 a year for the privilege of being counted as an employee."

Meanwhile, ESPN reports that the ruling doesn't end the debate, because the NLRB didn't rule on the merits of the players' argument.

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

Why is ‘drag queen story hour’ being defended even after convicted sex offenders participated? (Choose up to two)

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

  Special prosecutor named to look into Jussie Smollett case
  China announces tariff hike on $75 billion of US products
  ACLU forces school district to adopt leftist ideology
  Danish leader speaks with Trump amid Greenland dispute
Democrats pessimistic about "Medicare for All' plan
US officials confirm Israeli strike in Iraq

LATEST FROM THE WEB

How 'bout 'National Family Month'? Ideas for 2020
'I AM NOT SUICIDAL,' says man who exposed Hillary's ties to Google
Todd Starnes: Beauty queen in combat boots takes on Trump Derangement Syndrome
Why victimhood and fear won’t preserve liberty
Good grief: University banned beef because a fashion expert declared a ‘climate emergency’

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day