More than 30 years later, Tennessee has seen a $5 billion investment by General Motors (the Saturn-United Autoworkers plant has since closed), and a Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga.
Alexander pointed out that Honda, Toyota, BMW, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai "and thousands of suppliers have chosen southeastern right-to-work states for their plants."
Which brings me to the third column, by Arthur B. Laffer and Stephen Moore, co-authors of "Return to Prosperity: How America Can Regain Its Economic Superpower Status."
A lot of Americans would certainly like to know that.
The subhed on Laffer and Moore's column was this:
"Between 2000 and 2008, 4.8 million Americans moved from forced union states to right-to-work states. That's one person every minute every day."
West Virginians know some of those people by name.
Sometimes they come here at Thanksgiving. Sometimes we move there to be closer to the grandchildren.
"Right-to-work states are also getting richer over time," said Laffer and Moore.
Economist Richard Vedder of Ohio University found a 23 percent higher per capita income growth rate in right-to-work states than in forced-union states. From 1977 to 2007, it amounted to a $2,760 larger increase in per capita income in those states.
"That's a giant differential," wrote Laffer and Moore.
West Virginians don't hear much talk about right-to-work laws, which let individuals decide whether to join unions.
West Virginians don't hear much talk about billion-dollar investments either.
Maurice is editorial page editor of the Daily Mail. She may be reached at 348-4802 or ha...@dailymail.com.