Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

There’s No Place Like CounterPunch

There's no place like CounterPunch, it's just that simple. And as the radical space within the "alternative media"(whatever that means) landscape continues to shrink, sanctuaries such as CounterPunch become all the more crucial for our political, intellectual, and moral survival. Add to that the fact that CounterPunch won't inundate you with ads and corporate propaganda. So it should be clear why CounterPunch needs your support: so it can keep doing what it's been doing for nearly 25 years. As CP Editor, Jeffrey St. Clair, succinctly explained, "We lure you in, and then punch you in the kidneys." Pleasant and true though that may be, the hard-working CP staff is more than just a few grunts greasing the gears of the status quo.

So come on, be a pal, make a tax deductible donation to CounterPunch today to support our annual fund drive, if you have already donated we thank you! If you haven't, do it because you want to. Do it because you know what CounterPunch is worth. Do it because CounterPunch needs you. Every dollar is tax-deductible. (PayPal accepted)

Thank you,
Eric Draitser

The End of the Newspaper Worker


With a daily circulation of approximately 17,000, the solidly right-wing Antelope Valley Press has proudly served the Palmdale, high desert area (about 60 miles northeast of Los Angeles) since its founding, way back in 1915. The AVP is the largest selling daily newspaper in the Valley.

But on August 1, AVP management informed its copy desk employees that their workload would be reduced to a maximum of 39 hours a week, thus making them ineligible for benefits. Only full-time, 40-hour a week employees would continue to qualify for benefits (Sorry, folks….you fell one hour short!).

This craven announcement was made by Cherie Bryant, AVP’s vice-president and general manager and was first reported on Jim Romenesko’s media blog. Instead of trying to maintain these benefits by resorting to creative alternatives (e.g,, moving employees into another group plan, backloading wages, gaining breathing room through voluntary/mandatory furloughs, etc.), AVP management invented a loophole and then arbitrarily and brutally exploited it.

What makes this move so disturbing is not simply that loyal, long-term newspaper staffers were abruptly stripped of their benefit package and banished to the economic wilderness, but that these sorts of company maneuvers are no longer rare enough to be shock-inducing. They no longer elicit outrage. Instead of public protests or collective fury or calls for government action, these maneuvers now draw responses like, “Hey, welcome to the club, pal,” or “It could be worse….at least you still have a job.”

Of course, the bitter irony here is not that this dreadful economic battering has become systemic, but that it’s occurring within the larger context of sociological triumph. Gays and lesbians now have equal rights; racial and ethnic minorities can’t be denied jobs simply because they’re not white; female secretaries can’t be routinely groped by piggish male bosses; schoolyard bullying has been rightly addressed. There are dozens more “triumphs” we could mention.

Not that bias and victimization no longer occur, because obviously they still do (if you happen to be a Moslem living in the U.S.—or a Sikh that people think is a Moslem, or a Mexican that people think is an Arab—good luck to you). But, clearly, since the 1950s, no one can deny that there has been profound emphasis placed on personal liberty and individual rights. When it comes to individual rights, expectations are sky-high.

Unless those expectations involve economics. Unless they speak to one’s economic future. Because when it comes to “economic rights,” worker expectations have not only been dramatically lowered, they are dangerously close to being in a state of free-fall. If this were a horror movie, workers expectations would be seen to have mutated into some horrific creature that not only terrorizes the community, but devours the mad scientist who created it.

To make matters worse, instead of being frightened—instead of being so terrified of the future that we set fire to our hair and go running into the streets—we hear people (not plutocrats but regular working folks) mindlessly parroting these lame, half-baked macroeconomic overviews that not only excuse the naked greed that’s been set loose upon the land, but actually defend it.

When standards and expectations get lowered beyond a certain point, no good can come from it. Yet people glibly say that decent, full-time jobs are anachronisms, that we have to recalibrate, that we have to adjust to the New Economy, that the days where sons and daughters followed parents into well-paying union jobs in factories and mills are over, and that we now live in a “global economy.” Okay, fine. We’re all fucked. But where’s the outrage?

David Macaray, an LA playwright and author (“It’s Never Been Easy: Essays on Modern Labor”), was a former union rep.

David Macaray is a playwright and author. His newest book is “Nightshift: 270 Factory Stories.” He can be reached at

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


October 25, 2016
David Swanson
Halloween Is Coming, Vladimir Putin Isn’t
Hiroyuki Hamada
Fear Laundering: an Elaborate Psychological Diversion and Bid for Power
Priti Gulati Cox
President Obama: Before the Empire Falls, Free Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal
Kathy Deacon
Plus ça Change: Regime Change 1917-1920
Robin Goodman
Appetite for Destruction: America’s War Against Itself
Richard Moser
On Power, Privilege, and Passage: a Letter to My Nephew
Rev. William Alberts
The Epicenter of the Moral Universe is Our Common Humanity, Not Religion
Dan Bacher
Inspector General says Reclamation Wasted $32.2 Million on Klamath irrigators
David Mattson
A Recipe for Killing: the “Trust Us” Argument of State Grizzly Bear Managers
Derek Royden
The Tragedy in Yemen
Ralph Nader
Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think
Norman Pollack
Centrist Fascism: Lurching Forward
Guillermo R. Gil
Cell to Cell Communication: On How to Become Governor of Puerto Rico
Mateo Pimentel
You, Me, and the Trolley Make Three
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
October 24, 2016
John Steppling
The Unwoke: Sleepwalking into the Nightmare
Oscar Ortega
Clinton’s Troubling Silence on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Patrick Cockburn
Aleppo vs. Mosul: Media Biases
John Grant
Humanizing Our Militarized Border
Franklin Lamb
US-led Sanctions Targeting Syria Risk Adjudication as War Crimes
Paul Bentley
There Must Be Some Way Out of Here: the Silence of Dylan
Norman Pollack
Militarism: The Elephant in the Room
Patrick Bosold
Dakota Access Oil Pipeline: Invite CEO to Lunch, Go to Jail
Paul Craig Roberts
Was Russia’s Hesitation in Syria a Strategic Mistake?
David Swanson
Of All the Opinions I’ve Heard on Syria
Weekend Edition
October 21, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Wight
Hillary Clinton and the Brutal Murder of Gaddafi
Diana Johnstone
Hillary Clinton’s Strategic Ambition in a Nutshell
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Trump’s Naked and Hillary’s Dead
John W. Whitehead
American Psycho: Sex, Lies and Politics Add Up to a Terrifying Election Season
Stephen Cooper
Hell on Earth in Alabama: Inside Holman Prison
Patrick Cockburn
13 Years of War: Mosul’s Frightening and Uncertain Future
Rob Urie
Name the Dangerous Candidate
Pepe Escobar
The Aleppo / Mosul Riddle
David Rosen
The War on Drugs is a Racket
Sami Siegelbaum
Once More, the Value of the Humanities
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
Neve Gordon
Israel’s Boycott Hypocrisy
Mark Hand
Of Pipelines and Protest Pens: When the Press Loses Its Shield
Victor Wallis
On the Stealing of U.S. Elections
Michael Hudson
The Return of the Repressed Critique of Rentiers: Veblen in the 21st century Rentier Capitalism
Brian Cloughley
Drumbeats of Anti-Russia Confrontation From Washington to London
Howard Lisnoff
Still Licking Our Wounds and Hoping for Change
Brian Gruber
Iraq: There Is No State
Peter Lee
Trump: We Wish the Problem Was Fascism
Stanley L. Cohen
Equality and Justice for All, It Seems, But Palestinians