Within the labor movement, all of the bright ideas and strategic insights in the world won’t amount to much if the democratic rights of union members themselves aren’t respected, restored, and expanded.
Steve Early is a member of NewsGuild/CWA and author of Refinery Town: Big Oil, Big Money, and the Remaking of an American City. His new book (co-authored with Suzanne Gordon and Jasper Craven) is Our Veterans: Winners, Losers, Friends and Enemies on the New Terrain of Veterans Affairs.
While the armed forces carry out the mission of US imperialism, millions of working people sit at the heart of that machine, drawn to become soldiers by the promise of economic stability. A Left looking to rebuild links with the working class can’t avoid them.
Military veterans like the great labor leader Tony Mazzocchi have played a central role in US labor battles in the past. And if the union movement is to rebuild itself, working-class veterans will have to play an important role today too.
The mine workers’ union’s conservative, corrupt leadership leadership was ousted by reformers 50 years ago this month. Today’s union reformers can learn from both their successes and their failures.
We’ve long known that the US armed forces target poor and working-class students to meet their enlistment goals. But according to a recent report, the military’s JROTC program is also rife with sexual misconduct and outright abuse of young women.
In New York’s 11th Congressional District, two veterans are competing for the Democratic nomination. One is a centrist who will strengthen the military-industrial complex; the other is a democratic socialist who built her career fighting it.
Amazon is posing as a friend to veterans who need jobs when they return home from military service — while mistreating those veterans just as brutally as any other Amazon worker.
Joe Biden touted himself as friend of veterans while on the campaign trail. But now he’s overseeing the continued privatization of the VA and backing nominees that brag about being venture capitalists.
In the 1980s, corporations began promoting “quality of work life” and “lean production” schemes as a win-win for workers and bosses. But autoworker Mike Parker insisted these schemes were about better exploiting workers and undermining solidarity.
Fifty years ago today, on May Day 1971, thousands of antiwar protesters descended on Washington, DC, to protest the Vietnam War. The ensuing three days of disruptive actions directly confronted the Nixon administration — and resulted in the largest civil disobedience–related detentions in US history.
The 320,000 members of the International Association of Fire Fighters have begun voting for a new president. In Mahlon Mitchell, they have a chance to elect a 2016 DNC delegate for Bernie Sanders from Wisconsin who fought back against former governor Scott Walker’s vicious union-busting.
American foreign policy is often relegated to the margins of political consciousness in the US. But some of the most powerful voices against US intervention are those who have come from inside the military — and turned vehemently against it.
Demilitarizing police is an urgent demand in this moment. But with the police force and army so entwined — both in terms of personnel and weaponry — demilitarization won’t be easy.
In May 1970, 4 million students went on strike across the country, shutting down classes at hundreds of colleges, universities, and high schools and demanding an end to the Vietnam War. Fifty years later, their rebellion remains an inspiration, as radical student politics is back on the agenda.
Many national unions still haven’t endorsed in the presidential race. But no other candidate has the same history of walking the picket lines, fighting for worker rights, and fostering union organizing that Bernie Sanders does.
Martin Scorsese’s new film The Irishman continues Hollywood’s obsession with the disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa. We’re more concerned with what happened to Teamster working conditions under his son, James P. Hoffa.
Republicans and centrist Democrats love to pour money into more and more wars. But when it comes to providing public health care for the soldiers they put in harm’s way, they try to privatize and starve vets’ programs. We have to stop them.
Thirty years ago this summer, 60,000 telephone workers walked off the job in New York and New England — and stayed out for seventeen weeks. Their struggle against NYNEX, a telecom giant, became one of labor’s few big strike victories, during a decade that began with the disastrous defeat of PATCO, the national air traffic controllers union.
When leftists push their ideals on their kids, politics looks more like drudgery than liberation.
Bernie Sanders has a long record of supporting pro-worker policies. Organized labor should back his presidential run.