Politico-Economic Causes of Labor Regulation in the United States: Rent Seeking, Alliances, Raising Rivals' Costs (Even Lowering One's Own?), and Interjurisdictional Competition

38 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2006

See all articles by John T. Addison

John T. Addison

University of South Carolina - Moore School of Business - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: October 2006

Abstract

This paper offers an eclectic survey of the political economy of labor regulation in the United States at federal and state levels along the dimensions of occupational health and safety, unjust dismissal, right-to-work, workplace safety and workers' compensation, living wages, and prevailing wages. We discuss rent seeking/predation, coalition formation, judicial review, and interjurisdictional competition as well as the implications of union decline. Our analysis should help dispel any notion that the U.S. labor market is unregulated while also indicating that the political process shows some sensitivity to benefits and costs.

Keywords: labor regulation, regulatory capture, interjurisdictional competition, judicial review, OSHA, unjust dismissals, workplace safety, right-to-work, living wage ordinances, prevailing wages, unionism

JEL Classification: H70, J28, J38, J41, J48, J58, J65, J80, K31

Suggested Citation

Addison, John T., Politico-Economic Causes of Labor Regulation in the United States: Rent Seeking, Alliances, Raising Rivals' Costs (Even Lowering One's Own?), and Interjurisdictional Competition (October 2006). IZA Discussion Paper No. 2381. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=941121

John T. Addison (Contact Author)

University of South Carolina - Moore School of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://mooreschool.sc.edu/moore/economics/profiles/addison.htm

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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