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 Day 19

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Archives by Tag 'labor'
The Strategic Defeat of Labor
KEVIN CARSON
The decline of organized labor (from more than 30% of non-farm private sector workers in the ’50s to around 6% today) is often presented as something that “just happened” — a spontaneous fact of nature beyond human control, like glaciation or asteroid strikes. Far...
O Labor, Where Art Thou?
DAVID MACARAY
It’s astonishing that we have all these people out there—all these wildly opinionated, patriotic folks—who, without any prompting, will spontaneously burst into rhapsodic discourse about how much they admire the “checks and balances” written into the U.S. consti...
Obama’s $9 Per Hour Minimum Wage
DAVID MACARAY
Legendary comedian Mort Sahl (who’s still alive and kicking, by the way) used to tell this joke during the Nixon administration.  If a man were drowning 15-feet from shore, President Nixon would throw him a 10-foot rope.  Then Henry Kissinger would go on television an...
Walmart Bares Its Fangs
DAVID MACARAY
By now, everyone knows that the AFL-CIO has spent tens of millions of dollars and thousands of hours trying to get Walmart’s hourly employees to join the union (some union, any union).  Their organizing drive was smart, well-conceived, and timely.  Seemi...
Why Egypt’s Revolution is So Different
CARL FINAMORE
Cairo. Entering the third year of the revolt in Egypt, no amount of repression seems able to contain the swelling pressure exploding throughout the country the last several weeks. In fact, protests against the Muslim Brotherhood government of President Moh...
China Is No Paper Tiger
DAVID MACARAY
Without much fanfare, and without many people even being aware of it, in 2009, China overtook the U.S. as the world’s leading papermaker.  Moreover, they did it in much the same way that they became the world’s premiere manufacturing beast: with innovative engineerin...
The Argument for Amnesty
MARK VORPAHL
Millions experience the repressive nature of the U.S. immigration system on a daily basis, lifting its need for reform to a level of urgency. And fixing this broken program is integral to building the unity among U.S. workers that is required to challenge corporate Americ...
The Perils of Work
MICHAEL YATES
Workers in a hospital are sick of management violating their collective bargaining agreement. Their work is ever more stressful: hours keep getting longer; patient loads rise; safety rules are ignored. They tell their union steward that it is time to bombard the bosses wi...
When Labor Supports the Enemy
ARI PAUL
Who is to blame for organized labor’s descent in political irrelevancy? Ronald Reagan? The Koch brothers? Good answers, but maybe we need to look at labor leaders themselves. Consider the case of this year’s mayor’s race in New York City, one of the last bast...
Domestic Fair Trade
RONNIE CUMMINS and DAVE MURPHY
“The union is like having herpes. It doesn’t kill you, but it’s unpleasant and inconvenient, and it stops a lot of people from becoming your lover.” John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market Whole Foods Market (WFM) ...
Obama Silent on Labor
BRETT WARNKE
Women.  Gays.  African-Americans.  All are groups whose historical and contemporary injustices have mobilized America’s liberal base.  President Obama offered acknowledgement in his second inaugural and even a few historical allusions, mentioning “Seneca Falls, Se...
Trade Unions and the Strike in Britain
JOSEPH RICHARDSON
London. Two events from 2010 abundantly illustrate the unfair double-standard to which Trade Unions are subjected. In May, cabin crew at British Airways prepared to go on a series of 5 day strikes to protest management’s victimisation of workers w...
The Real Reason for the Decline of American Labor Unions
KRIS WARNER
Earlier this week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its annual summary of unionization in the U.S. It reports that in 2012, the union-membership rate of wage and salary workers was 11.3 percent, compared with 11.8 percent in 2011. The trend has been downward for so...
Yoga and the Picket Line
CARL FINAMORE
Each year some 2000 yoga enthusiasts assemble at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in San Francisco, California for “a great convergence of yogis of all ages and backgrounds” states convention sponsor Yoga Journal. The extremely liberal and tolerant “city by the bay...
Can Occupy and Labor Coalesce?
PETER RUGH
On a cold December morning, before sunrise in New York’s Chinatown, about ...
Retail Rebellion
BRIAN TIERNEY
In 1962, Arkansas businessman Sam Walton opened the first Walmart discount store, setting in motion the rapid ascendance of a corporate giant that would redefine markets around the world. With its focus on competitive prices and vast distribution networks that revolutio...
The Right-to-Exploit
ROBERT HANHAM
No sooner had Michigan’s ‘right-to-work’ (RTW) law passed, than supporters were out in force crowing about their success and the prospect of other states falling victim. Non-RTW states Alaska, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hamps...
Who Will Be the Next Secretary of Labor?
DAVID MACARAY
With Hilda Solis resigning as Labor Secretary (presumably, to run for LA County Board of Supervisors, the first step in the former congresswoman’s renewal of her political career), President Obama has the opportunity to appoint someone who can make a real difference. No...
The Long-Term Jobs and Wage Picture
ALAN NASSER
“We are being afflicted with a new disease of which some readers may not yet have heard the name, but of which they will hear a great deal in the years to come – namely, technological unemployment. This means unemployment due to our discovery of means of e...
An Alliance in Healthcare
CAL WINSLOW
In a giant step forward for California healthcare workers, two of the nation’s most militant unions have joined forces in the battle against Kaiser Permanente, the giant California based healthcare corporation. It is a battle of enormous proportion, one with implication...
Longshoremen Strike Averted
DAVID MACARAY
On December 28, a potential strike by the ILA (International Longshoremen’s Association), representing East Coast dockworkers, was averted when union negotiators agreed to extend the contract for another month, and continue bargaining.  Both sides took this to be a hop...
Economic Plunder in Recent History
ROB URIE
In the mid 1990s Republican New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman ...
Approaching the Twilight of the Labor Movement
DAVID MACARAY
Private sector union membership in the U.S. stands at about 7-percent, meaning that 93-percent of all private sector jobs in this country are non-union, which makes those accusations of unions of being “too powerful” even more ridiculous and hysterical than they alrea...
The Crass Cynicism of Right-to-Work Laws
ANDREW LEVINE
Teddy Roosevelt called their counterparts a century ago “malefactors of great wealth.”  They tried to buy the 2012 election for Mitt Romney, and the Senate for the GOP.  That was unwise, inasmuch as they have been getting all they could hope for from Barack Obama an...
What Would a Country Without Labor Unions Look Like?
DAVID MACARAY
What would a country without unions look like?  Before answering, we should clarify labor’s role, both historically and presently.  The purpose of a labor union is and always has been  to raise the standard of living for working people.  Simple as that.  And by “...