Mark Vorpahl, Workers' Action
Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor John Stoltenberg
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(August 18, 2012) Many of today’s social expectations and political outlooks of the Labor Movement, and workers in general, were formed in the post World War II economic expansion. While the economy was expanding and there were steady jobs to be had, it appeared to be enough for many people to focus on improving their immediate community or individual union and expect that, if things did not get better, at least they wouldn’t get drastically worse.
Those days are long gone. Since the World War II expansion, the nation’s wealth and power have grown dangerously concentrated in a few hands. This has been accompanied by 30 years of a declining standard of living for workers and a devastating drop in union membership. The total control big business has gathered over the political system has assured that their priorities rule the day at the cost to society as a whole. This accumulative process has resulted in a new historical phase of accelerating attacks against previous gains, such as Medicare and Social Security, and requires from workers a different outlook than that developed after World War II.
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