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Archive | August, 2005

Defeating Right-to-Work in Missouri, 1978: A Rank & File Victory

For students of the U.S. labor movement, searching the 1970s for meaningful working class victories can prove to be a tedious and frustrating task.  During the tumultuous 1960s, U.S. labor, at best, offered benign neglect to the potentially transformational struggles of that era — Civil Rights, anti-Vietnam War resistance, women’s rights, environmental, and other pivotal […]

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Blood and Fire

The Activists’ MC: An Interview with Rapper Son of Nun

Most progressive-minded hip hop fans and culturally-inclined activists have not heard of Baltimore rapper Son of Nun yet. After listening to the Son’s first album, Blood and Fire, I can only say this: they will. Despite this being his first album, Nun — a high school teacher, activist, and organizer from Baltimore — is clearly […]

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Only So Much Work to Go Round

This idea cannot withstand a nanosecond of thought. The idea that a fixed quantity of work exists, to be parcelled out among workers, is the so-called lump-of-labour fallacy. It is depressing that supposedly responsible governments continue to pretend to be unaware of the old ‘lump of labour’ fallacy: the illusion that the output of an […]

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Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Market Fundamentalists Lose in Iran (For Now)

The prevailing spin on Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s rise to Iran’s presidency wrongly suggests that a win for his rivals could have ushered a dawn of enlightenment. The mainstream press has largely described Iran’s competing factions as little more than vote-rigging theocrats arrayed against tolerant modernizers. In particular, strong support for Ahmadinejad among the Basij militia and […]

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Singin

General Electric’s Ecomagination: New Veneer, Same Propaganda

General Electric (GE) commercials have always aimed to present a calm, peaceful world that (they imply) the company’s technological ingenuity helps make possible. After all, they “bring good things to life.” As environmental degradation continues to expand in tandem with global capitalism, environmental consciousness becomes a new marketing strategy. GE’s newest invention is to present […]

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An Injury to One

An Injury to One: A Film by Travis Wilkerson

2005 will mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Industrial Workers World, the I.W.W., popularly known as the “Wobblies.” The most radical, mass-based labor organization to emerge within U.S. history, they embodied the slogan “An Injury to One Is an Injury to All,” as they organized unskilled as well as skilled workers, immigrants […]

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Wobblies

Latterday Wobbly Types: Remembering Stan Weir

The Industrial Workers of the World, celebrating their centenary this year (see Paul Buhle, “The Legacy of the IWW,” Monthly Review, June 2005), could not play a major role in labor or the Left after the middle 1920s,  but their influence continued (and continues) to be felt in many curious ways. To take an often […]

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