posts categorized asLaborOnline Features

Brazil’s Solidarity Economy

by on May 6, 2016

My first face-to-face introduction to the solidarity economy in Southern Brazil was a visit to a recycling cooperative. Through hard work, the 16-member team had arranged for mountains of garbage to be dumped in their yard. Most of the coop members had worked alone previously, going street to street looking for plastics, paper, glass and metal, and then trying to sell their sorted waste to local companies.

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When Socialists Won Elections (and Where)

by on May 5, 2016

Bernie Sanders has come close. And in doing so he has demonstrated that in 2016 the label democratic socialist is no longer a third-rail in American politics. This makes it a good time to talk about American political history and to contemplate the socialist movement of a century ago, when socialists won elections in more than 350 cities and towns, when more than 380 weekly and daily newspapers affiliated with the Socialist Party, when socialism was popular in states and counties that now vote solidly conservative.

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Should Right to Work Laws be Legal?

by on April 26, 2016

If ever a law was mislabeled, it is the Right to Work legislation. This anti-union contagion has spread through state legislatures like an ever growing fungus (witness Wisconsin). Pro-business conservative nabobs are making the argument that more business means more jobs and Right to Work laws promote business development or relocation.

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Canoas: A Government of, by and for the People

by on April 25, 2016

This is the first article in a series on Canoas, Brazil and its experiment with radical democracy.

Here in the states, we know what it means to see our democratic rights attacked. But do we have a vision of what an expansion of democracy and popular participation in government might look like?

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French Workers Fight to Maintain 35-Hour Work Week

by on March 23, 2016

French workers are fighting to maintain their 35 hour work week. Adopted in February of 2000, as part of the platform of France’s Socialist Party, it became effective in 2002. Now, despite no ill effects in productivity the MEDEF, or the “Movement of the Enterprises of France,” which is an employer’s union, is pressing for a return to the past.

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Oaxaca Teachers Still Fighting Corporate Education Reforms

by on February 26, 2016

Ten years ago, one of the most radical unions in the hemisphere, the Sección XXII of Mexico’s National Education Workers’ Union (SNTE), led a vibrant movement against the state governor’s heavy-handed rule in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. The demonstrations, known to many as the “Oaxaca Commune,” featured six months of mass marches, public encampments, and neighborhood barricades.

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