On Union-Busting, Job Quality, and the Perils of U.S. Labour Law

The recent union election at the Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama has proven to be one of those all-too-rare events that gets the broader public to tune into labour issues. In the aftermath of the defeat, there have been countless analyses and accounts of what happened, along with prognostications about what this portends for the…

Analyzing the Amazon Campaign and US Labour

The aggregate numbers assessing the state of the U.S. labour movement did not look good in 2020. The spike in strikes we saw in 2018 and 2019, propelled by teachers, collapsed amidst the pandemic in 2020, with only eight major strikes (involving more than 1,000 workers, lasting more than one 8-hour shift). This is the…

Mapping the Current U.S. Political Terrain

When Joe Biden takes office tomorrow, the personnel in the U.S. government will change, but the deeper problems remain to be addressed. This creates a unique set of challenges and opportunities for those committed to addressing the pathologies that gave us not only Trump, but Trumpism.

Thinking Through the 2020 U.S. Election

The past few weeks have had more than their fair share of “through the looking glass” moments for scholars of U.S. politics. Donald Trump lost the presidential election, but not in the decisive way that many pollsters had predicted. And despite presiding over an historic economic collapse and a catastrophic response to a deadly global pandemic, he ended up losing while increasing the number of people voting for him, and increasing his margins among some unlikely constituencies, particularly Black and Latino men.

A Bit of Recognition

Yesterday I learned that my book, Labor and the Class Idea in the United States and Canada, has been awarded an Honorable Mention for the 2020 Seymour Martin Lipset Best Book Award competition of the American Political Science Association’s Canadian Politics Section.  It is both ironic and fitting that my book should win an award named after…

COVID-19’s Financial Fallout for Workers

On April 2, I took part in a live-streamed discussion on the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic for workers. The event was sponsored by McGill University’s Alumni Association, and featured myself in dialogue with Christopher Ragan, Director of McGill’s Max Bell School of Public Policy, and Chair of Canada’s Ecofiscal Commission. You can find…

Transform Your Workplace, Save the Planet

On February 11, 2020, I had the honor of moderating a community forum in downtown Montreal around the theme of “Transform Your Workplace, Save the Planet.” It was held at St. Jax’s Community Centre on rue Ste. Catherine. The forum brought together a fascinating panel of speakers from the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Green…

Labor and the Class Idea Reviewed in The Progressive

I was happy to see Shaun Richman’s generous review of my book in The Progressive. A longtime labor activist, writer, and now Program Director of the Harry Van Arsdale Jr. Center for Labor Studies at SUNY Empire State College, Richman brought to the review his many years of experience grappling directly with the kinds of challenges that I address in the book.

What the LA teachers’ strike tells us about labor’s future

On January 25, the Washington Post published a piece of mine on the recently-concluded Los Angeles teachers’ strike. While it was certainly a decisive victory for the members of United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), the LA teachers’ union, it also has broader implications for the US labor movement more broadly—particularly in light of last year’s Supreme Court…

Taking Stock of the Labor Movement for Labor Day

To mark the Labor Day holiday, I wrote a piece for the Washington Post taking stock of the current state of the US labor movement, and thinking of what its past can tell us about the road ahead. While unions have taken a beating over the past several decades, this Labor Day is somewhat different in…

Labor and the Class Idea on Beneath the Surface with Suzi Weissman

Just in time for the Labo(u)r Day long weekend, I was invited on to Suzi Weissman’s great radio show, Beneath the Surface, to discuss my book. Suzi always asks great questions, which made this interview a real treat. We spent some time getting into what exactly I mean by this concept of “the class idea,”…