The economic changes that led to Trump's election began over 30 years ago.
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Labor / Economics
Stories about Labor and Economics.
When the “pink tide” of left-leaning governments first rose to power on the back of anti-neoliberal protests across Latin America in the late 1990s and early 2000s, the initial reaction from the Left was euphoric. Striving to move beyond the “there is no alternative” mantra, many pinned their hopes on what seemed to be a new wave of actually existing alternatives to neoliberalism.
Amidst the revolutionary fervor of social forums, solidarity alliances, and peoples’ councils, it appeared an epochal shift was underway, which Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa optimistically dubbed “a genuine change in the times.”
But in retrospect, the 2005 political mobilizations that led to the defeat of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) may have been the high point of the pink tide project. Since then, the balance of power has slowly shifted back towards the Right, with the popularity and efficacy of left-wing governments rapidly diminishing.
(The TPP from the point of view of a Wisconsin organic dairy/beef farmer. Short and to-the-point.)
Trade is good, but “Free Trade” doesn’t work for farmers
or workers or most everyone else.
Free trade does, however,work spectacularly well for corporations...
Pollution is a bad thing, right? Isn’t the ultimate goal of the 1972 Clean Water Act to make all water in the U.S. swimmable, fishable, and drinkable – as it once was? Well, think again… If you are a capitalist entrepreneur who believes, to paraphrase Reagan, in the “magic of the market place” then a lucrative opportunity awaits you in the emerging water pollution trading business!
Review of The Wobblies in their Heyday: The Rise and Destruction of the Industrial Workers of the World during the World War I Era by Eric Chester (Praeger, 2014, hardbound; Levellers Press, 2016, paperback). Staughton Lynd
The Wobblies are back. Many young radicals find the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) the most congenial available platform on which to stand in trying to change the world.
This effort has been handicapped by the lack of a hard-headed history of the IWW in its initial incarnation, from 1905 to just after World War I. The existing literature, for example Franklin Rosemont’s splendid book on Joe Hill, is strong on movement culture and atmosphere. It is weak on why the organization went to pieces in the early 1920s.
Management at Carrier Corporation pulled Donnie Knox, president of the United Steelworkers Local 1999, and others employed by the company into a meeting on February 10th. Knox and his fellow workers were informed their jobs would be moved to Mexico.
Despite remaining profitable in Indianapolis – the company boasted more than $7 billion in profits last year and was able to award their CEO a $10 million pay package – Carrier and its parent company United Technologies abruptly decided its 1,400 workforce in the Midwest would be discarded so manufacturing could be relocated to a site where, according to union staff, the company will pay workers just $3 per hour.
Serious problems in the nation’s flood insurance program have received heavy media coverage over the past three months. But flood insurance, like any insurance that covers a single type of (un)natural disaster, is burdened with inherent contradictions that always threaten to scuttle the system.
Organised labour has long insisted that energy is more than an issue of electrons. Over two decades ago, the Congress of South African Trade Unions was explicit that addressing energy poverty is not just a matter of power plants, grids and transformers; it is also – and primarily – a matter of political change. Who controls energy production, who finances it, what the energy is used for and who decides are key to the struggle to ensure that people have the energy they need to ensure decent livelihoods.
Earlier this year, a collection of papers was published under the title of Building Global Labor Solidarity in a Time of Accelerating Globalization (Scipes, ed., 2016). It was a strong effort by seven labor activists and scholars from different parts of the world to think out how workers today can support each other globally; initially so as to defend against attacks on workers’ and their unions’ power, but ultimately, to develop ideas on how we could more consciously develop our thinking and our organizations to move toward a more economically- and socially-just world.