STRIKE, INTERRUPTED


Here’s my take, at the Prospect, on the end of the Verizon strike and the challenge of reversing the decline in the company’s union density:

Early describes the regular reports he heard from Verizon Wireless workers of the ways management fostered resentment of their unionized landline counterparts. “You are the profit center,” managers would tell them. “You are the ones that are making us the success that we are today. See that guy over there, in that hard hat—do you know how much he makes?”

Check it out.

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WHAT COULD A TELECOM MERGER MEAN FOR ECONOMIC DEMOCRACY?


I have a new post up on Dissent asking what an AT&T merger could mean for economic democracy:

If you’re on the left and you buy groceries, chances are at some point you’ve been faced with a choice between a neighborhood corner store and a unionized chain supermarket. That choice exposes a tension between two long-held progressive goals: anti-monopolism and workers’ industrial power.

The progressive puzzle I’m analyzing here reminds me of sociologist Albert Hirschman’s discussion of two ways people deal with inadequate institutions: exit and voice. It plays out in this case as a tension between improving customers’ chances of dumping an unjust company for another one and improving workers’ chances – together with consumers – of transforming their company.

Check it out.

Update (7/3): Alek Felstiner offers some interesting thoughts in response:
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