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THE WHITE TERRORISTS — Yvette Carnell writes a scathing history of Lynching in America; Ajamu Baraka on Netanyahu the Rejectionist; Patrick Smith on Reinventing the Foreign Correspondent; Peter Lee on the escalating cyberwar between the US and China; Jeffrey St. Clair on the Real Israeli Defense Force: the US Congress. Plus: Mike Whitney: Getting Cured in Vietnam; JoAnn Wypijewski on Gramsci, Chick Webb and the Art of Living Well; Chris Floyd: Learning About the Rapture from Michele Bachmann and Lee Ballinger: Driving Nat King Cole.
Archives by Tag 'unions'
The Romney Doctrine
GENE GRABINER
In May of 2012, Mitt Romney made his now famous 47% speech to a secret group of very wealthy donors. In this presentation, we see the “Romney Doctrine” in full relief. In fact, we rarely, (perhaps never), have seen a more open class analysis of our country made by a p...
Labor’s Big Test
MARK VORPAHL
For some time now, Labor has been punched into a corner when it comes to state legislation. Over the last two years legislation has been passed in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan that has attempted to gut largely public workers of their union rights. In addi...
Black Teachers’ Revolt of the 1960s
BOB SIMPSON
Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) organizer Brandon Johnson, who is a black man, recently spoke about a conversation he had with veteran black educator Dr. Grady Jordan about racism in the schools today. Jordan told him, “Black teachers fought hard. This is a direct retaliat...
Big Profits and More Concessions
CARL FINAMORE
California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) has four medical campuses in San Francisco and is the city’s second largest private employer with 6000 employees and “over 1500 doctors and allied health practitioners.” It is owned by Sutter Health, a huge healthcare provide...
Caring for America
STEVE EARLY
America’s growing workforce of home-based care-givers has provided the labor movement with its main source of recent  membership growth, in a period of overall union decline. Some of these gains were rolled back last year in states like Wisconsin, Ohio, and Mic...
They’re Called “Scabs” for a Reason
DAVID MACARAY
Legendary political satirist Mort Sahl (whom I’ve interviewed) used to tell this joke:  “If President Nixon saw a drowning man 20-feet from shore, he would throw him a 15-foot rope.  Then Henry Kissinger would go on television and solemnly announce that the presiden...
Debunking the Myth of the “Union Boss”
DAVID MACARAY
Among the many myths and outright lies being circulated about labor unions (e.g., union members can’t be fired, they are inferior workers, it was union wages that forced companies to relocate overseas, etc.), one of the most annoying and downright offensive is the Myth ...
The Villainy of Teachers
BRUCE NEUBURGER
  We were having a conversation in the teachers’ room and discussing the Chicago teachers’ strike and remarking on how the politicians and the media tried to bully the Chicago teachers with all this talk about how they were harming the interest of their st...
Screwing Working People
JODI DEAN
A friend of mine dropped out of high school in the mid-70s. She went to work cleaning at a college in her town. She worked at this college for about 30 years. Apparently, she didn’t work for the college, though. She worked for three or four (it’...
Why You Should Support the Chicago Teachers’ Strike
CHRISTOPHER FONS
The serious villagers have now spoken: the editorial boards of many of the country’s major newspapers including the New York Times and the Chicago Tribune, Mitt Romney, Rahm Emmanuel’s new friend Paul Ryan, Illinois’ “progressive” Senator Dick Durbin, Jesse Jack...
Labor on the Ropes
DAVID MACARAY
There are plenty of notable labor events occurring at the moment.  And by “notable,” of course, we mean hideous and horribly depressing.  Clearly, management people all over the world believe the stars are in perfect alignment and that they now have a decided advant...
Class Attack at Maruti
PRATYUSH CHANDRA
Recent years have seen militant labour unrests in Indian industries which have startled not just the management and the Indian state, but also the established unions. This article analyses the most recent and perhaps most significant of these struggles that happened i...
My Organized Labor Fantasy
DAVID MACARAY
Most of us have spent time fanaticizing about stuff.  Like what we would do if we hit the $100 million lottery, or what we would do differently if we could go back to high school, or what it would be like being Mick Jagger for a weekend.  Call me uninspired or boring, b...
Return of the Yellow Dog
DAVID MACARAY
With Labor Day weekend approaching, it’s appropriate to take a moment and consider the status of the American worker.  Given the unemployment figures, the devastating export of American jobs to foreign countries, and, accordingly, the paucity of full-time jobs that off...
How Unions Could Do Much Better
ANN ROBERTSON and BILL LEUMER
The International Association of Machinists just succeeded in negotiating a humiliating defeat with Caterpillar after a 15-week strike. Workers lost considerable money by striking, and then lost even more with the new contract, accepting almost every concession the ...
Longview Redux
CAL WINSLOW
I was happy to learn that the longshoremen of Longview Washington, members of International Longshore and Warehousemen Union (ILWU), Local 21, were awarded the Mother Jones prize by the Washington State Labor Council at its August convention. The longshoremen of lo...
From Labor Boon to Embarrassment?
STEVE EARLY
One sign, among many, of labor’s current travails is the stalled union growth strategy known as “Bargain to Organize.” More than a decade ago, there was no bigger buzzword in union organizing circles. When John Sweeney was elected AFL-CIO presiden...
When Workers Take Control
MARK VORPAHL
Many of today’s social expectations and political outlooks of the Labor Movement, and workers in general, were formed in the post World War II economic expansion. While the economy was expanding and there were steady jobs to be had, it appeared to be enough for many peo...
Behind the South Africa Mineworkers Strike
JEAN DAMU
The recent South African mineworkers massacre in which scores were shot and killed had its origins in long disgraced trade union organizing tactics but that in no way absolves the police and mine owners from being held in accountable. There is blood and blame enoug...
The Caterpillar Strike as Metaphor
DAVID MACARAY
Not that anyone—least of all American factory workers over the last three decades—needs to be reminded that corporations have very little respect for working people, the International Association of Machinists (IAM) strike against the Caterpillar plant in Joliet, Illi...
Working (and Organizing) at the Weapons Plant
STEVE EARLY
In the 1970s, when thousands of recently radicalized Sixties’ activists “colonized” industrial workplaces under the direction of various left-wing groups, there was no tougher nut to crack than military contractors. Not only were the working condit...
The Labor Law Reform We Need
RAND WILSON
When the next opportunity for labor law reform arrives, union membership will be smaller and our political clout even more diminished. If we are to succeed, future reform proposals must be wrapped in a broader mantle that will appeal to all workers. The four-year d...
A Possible Strategy for Organized Labor
DAVID MACARAY
Which of the following scenarios would be “most beneficial” to a society?  Scenario A,  where $100 million is spent by randomly mailing 100 million people a check for $1.00, or Scenario B, where that $100 million is spent to build a brand new modern library in a cit...
The Anti-Union Court
DAVID MACARAY
People who interpret Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts’ vote not to overturn “Obamacare” as evidence that this enigmatic Justice may, in fact, be more “liberal” than previously thought, need to go back and rethink their position.  Indeed, Robert...
Get the Teachers
DAVE LINDORFF
Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of Washington, DC’s public schools, who left under a cloud after the mayor who appointed her, Adrian Fenty, was defeated in a re-election bid in which Rhee’s contentious tenure was the main issue, is at it again. Rhee, a sha...
Red Alert for San Francisco Teachers
ANDY LIBSON
On May 10th, 1880 United Educators of San Francisco (UESF) teachers, counselors and paraprofessionals voted overwhelmingly (97%) to authorize a strike vote. The UESF strike vote was the first step of a two-step process for strike authorization. The vote was a big step for...
Pensions Under Attack
MARK VORPAHL
On Friday, July 6, President Obama signed into law a bill that would renew transportation programs and extend low interest rates on student loans for one year. While this minimal gesture resulted in, no doubt, sighs of relief from those burdened by student debt, tucked aw...
Jobs Crisis Denial
SHAMUS COOKE
Before any problem can be fixed it must first be acknowledged. The jobs crisis stays in the shadows, out of mind, and consequently unaddressed. This is allowed to happen because those in power – Republicans and Democrats – both have political reasons to rema...
A New Era for Worker Ownership
GAR ALPEROVITZ
The workers of the just-formed New Era Windows cooperative in Chicago—the same workers who sat in and forced Serious Energy to back down on a hasty shutdown of their Goose Island plant a few months ago, and famously occupied the same factory for six days in December 200...
Are You Now or Have You Ever Been an “Anti-Labor Leftist”?
MICHAEL D. YATES
The recent defeat of the Scott Walker recall in Wisconsin, an election in which Walker soundly defeated the same Democratic challenger who ran against him when he became governor in 2010, has generated much discussion. Why was the Wisconsin Uprising of early 2011, where h...
Fighting for the Soul of the Carpenters’ Union
SHAMUS COOKE
All working people should pay attention to the egregious assault on union democracy happening in the Carpenters Union’s Pacific North West Regional Council, which covers all the Carpenter’s Locals in Oregon, Idaho, Washington, Wyoming, and Montana. The Unit...
Money, Power and Politics
ANN ROBERTSON and BILL LEUMER
There has been much talk recently about the impact of money on politics, especially in the wake of the Citizens United ruling that has ratcheted up the role of corporate money in political campaigns. Organized labor was quick to blame this ruling for its defeat in Wiscons...
Obama Sells Out Labor and the Environment … Again
ROB URIE
This week the Obama administration was caught hiding behind secrecy agreements to mask its role in the latest ‘free-trade’ deal, the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The pact is designed to further shift legal and regulatory authority from governments to mu...
Kelber Challenges Trumka for Head of AFL-CIO
RUSSELL MOKHIBER
Harry Kelber will challenge Richard Trumka for the presidency of the AFL-CIO at the labor union’s convention September 8-12, 2013 in Los Angeles. Remember Harry Kelber? He’s a labor activist and writer who runs ...
We’re Being Played for Suckers
DAVID MACARAY
Two damaging misconceptions about labor unions:  (1) Union members tend to be substandard workers (lazy, unreliable, surly, privileged), and (2) union members can’t be fired because their “masters” will always go to bat to protect them. Where they got that f...
California’s Health Care Wars
CAL WINSLOW
California’s healthcare workers’ wars continue, in the streets, in collective bargaining and in the courts, at a level of conflict not often matched in the US today. More, in these California conflicts, healthcare workers and their unions are as often as not on the of...
The Wisconsin Wake-Up Call
STEVE EARLY
Tuesday, June 5, was a disastrous day for public workers from the west coast to the mid-west. Voters in San Diego and San Jose approved retirement benefit cuts for their city employees, which led major newspapers to proclaim (accurately) that more “pension reform” of ...
Learning From Wisconsin
MARK VORPAHL
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker not only defeated the recall, he did so easily taking 54 percent of the vote. This is a big defeat for the union leadership who threw as many resources as they could afford behind this effort. How is it possible that this could have happene...
How Not to be a Union
ANN ROBERTSON and BILL LEUMER
Unions were originally built on the principle of solidarity. Workers soon realized that as individuals they were powerless when trying to defend their interests in relation to their profit-maximizing employers. But when they were organized and stood together, their combin...
Rust Belt Resistance
CARL FINAMORE
It was only a short time ago on April 24, the two-year anniversary of the 2010 catastrophic explosion on the British Petroleum (BP) Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, that the government made their first arrest of a BP en...
How Walker Really Won Wisconsin
JEFFREY SOMMERS
Much ink has been spilt and punditry hot air vented in explaining the failure to recall Scott Walker in this week’s election.  Yet nearly all of it fails to address the appeal of Scott Walker and his policies for much of Wisconsin’s working and middle class.  Walker...
Why People Vote Against Themselves
SAM SMITH
It is always sad to see large numbers of people engaged in a politics that opposes their true self interest. It is one of the things that defined the American south for a century after the Civil War. It was what allowed the Nazis to take power in Germany....
Big Trouble at the NLRB
DAVID MACARAY
Many will recall the nasty dust-up at the NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) last November, when Republican Board member Brian Hayes, angry and resentful at what he considered too many “pro union” decisions being handed down by the Board, threatened to resign in pr...
Obama and Wisconsin
SAM SMITH
The irony is that, whether Scott Walker wins or loses in Wisconsin, Obama and ...
Unionizing Prison Guards in an Age of Mass Incarceration
BRIAN TIERNEY
Dozens of people gathered outside of a supermax prison in Illinois in April demanding that the facility be shut down. They held signs that read “I am a mom,” a spin on the iconic “I am a man” signs held by striking sanitation workers in Memphis in 1968. But...
Obama’s Wisconsin Betrayal
ANDREW LEVINE
When all else fails, Obama apologists conjure up what FDR is supposed to have said to some of his liberal supporters: “I agree with you, I want to do it, now make me do it.”  In the early days of the Obama presidency, this was a call to action.  It quickly degenerat...
Torie Osborn’s Insurgent Run
STEVE EARLY
In 2008, thousands of Obama campaign volunteers got fired up about electoral politics in a way they hadn’t been before. Four years later, some are now running for office themselves. But few have made a bigger splash in local Democratic circles than 61-year-old Tor...
Obama, Labor and Marriage Equality
MARK VORPAHL
Since President Obama made his very calculated public statement announcing that he was “personally” in favor of same sex marriage, among the many commentators who have rushed to his support have been a significant number of Labor leaders. Richard Trumka...
Bilingualism Scott Walker Style
JEFFREY SOMMERS and CHRISTOPHER FONS
With only three weeks left in Wisconsin’s historic recall election of Governor Scott Walker, a video has emerged with the potential to reverse the fortunes of this newly anointed star of the American radical conservative movement. Serious lies have brought down m...
Nurses vs. High-Speed Traders
SARAH ANDERSON
Of all the street actions leading up to the NATO summit, the one that might seem most perplexing is a nurses’ rally for a tax on securities trades. Financial markets are pretty remote from hospital bedsides, you might think. Why would nurses get mixed up in an is...