Labor legend Jerry Brown responds to critics of Jane McAlevey

This was not written for this blog, but I’ve been asked to circulate it widely. It’s a response by Jerry Brown—not the governor but the long-time leader of SEIU 1199 New England—to reviews by Steve Early and Joe Burns of Jane McAlevey’s excellent book Raising Expectations (And Raising Hell), on how to revive the U.S. labor movement. Both reviews are extremely tendentious and unfair, and do not respond to Jane’s arguments at all. I am also addressing this re-post in part to all the people who’ve embraced the Early/Burns line without having read the book. My… Read More

SEIU’s FFFE: a lot of expensive nothing, apparently

In my recent posts on the Wisconsin results and the dire crisis of organized labor, I argued among other things that unions must fight for the broad working class and not just their shrinking memberships if they’re ever going to turn things around. Some people who disagreed with me claimed that unions were already doing that. Example offered were the AFL-CIO’s Working America program the SEIU’s Fight for a Fair Economy. [Ed. note: I’d originally said that Working America was one word, a la high-tech branding, but it’s two. Sorry.] So what are… Read More