• Jobs Versus the Environment

    Is there a fundamental conflict between a healthy environment and a healthy economy? There has been a lot of concern lately about damage that we humans are inflicting on our small, beautiful Planet Earth.  Waste CO2 from our way of life has been dissolving in the oceans, increasing the acidity of the water and making […]

  • What’s Wrong with Single Payer?

    With all the advocacy efforts expended over the last 20 years, it might be reasonable to expect some results by now for the Single Payer (SP) movement.  Of course, SP would be a great way to provide health insurance in America.  Instead of thousands of private insurance companies (payers for healthcare services) competing with each […]

  • Now (That the Dems Have Taken Back Congress) What?

    The November ’06 election presents socialists and progressives in the US with a (thankfully) new situation.  The next couple of years offer many opportunities, questions, and dilemmas . If we squarely face the many complications inherent in the current balance of class forces in America, maybe we can help to keep things moving away from […]

  • Gazing into the Future: Wal-Mart & the Unions

    What’s the wave of the future for the United States in the 21st century?  You couldn’t go far wrong by answering, “Wal-Mart.”  In the case of the giant chain store, it might be fair to say “tsunami of the future.” The United Food and Commercial Workers Union, together with the Teamsters Union, has lately been […]

  • On the Trail of Local 719

    The legend in my family has it that my Grandpa Kelley was a rank-and-file organizer of some importance during the CIO upsurge of 1936-37, at his General Motors plant in La Grange, Illinois.  He died before I went into the Army in 1969, so I never really got much of a chance to talk to […]

  • Why You Should Read Solidarity for Sale If You Care about Unions in the United States

    I loved Bob Fitch’s new book, Solidarity for Sale.  For someone like myself, who has been battered around a bit by a few union leaders, it was like a drink of cool water at the end of a long, hot run. I’m troubled by the tone of some critical reviews of Solidarity for Sale I’ve […]

  • Union Stewards’ Councils

    I would like to help organize, both at a national and a local level, a network of stewards’ councils.  Such a group would both strengthen existing unions and help organize new members into the labor movement. Stewards are the vital heart of the union movement.  We are the front line leaders in constant contact with […]

  • Seattle Votes for a Right to Health Care

    Measure No. 1, as it appeared on the ballot: Advisory ballot measure No. 1 concerns the right to health care. If approved, the measure would advise the mayor and the city council that every person in the US should have an equal right to quality health care, and that Congress should implement that right.  The […]

  • Union Organizing in the Trenches

    Thirty-five years ago, my Dad told me a story that I recall from time to time. It was about my mother’s father, Grandpa John Kelley. Grandpa lost his small Chicago moving business during the Great Depression. Soon after losing his business, he was lucky enough to land a job at the massive Electromotive train engine […]