The phrase “politics is theater” is pretty common, especially these days. Our elected leaders spend much more time throwing one-liners back and forth than they do governing, or doing anything that might help working families. And while there is blame to go around for this anti-American behavior, there is no greater perpetrator of criminal hyperbole […]

In previous generations, most working people could retire with dignity due to a trio benefits that became known as “The Three Legged Stool.” These benefits are Social Security, decent wages that allowed people to save, and defined benefit pensions. Today, with wages stagnant for decades and pensions all but a memory, workers are left with […]

Click the link to hear Rick Smith discuss the corrupt and barbaric practice of convict leasing, which many scholars simply call “slavery by another name.” On this day in labor history, the year was 1928. That was the day the state of Alabama outlawed the convict lease system that had been in practice for decades. […]

When Timothy McVeigh was arrested in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995, a copy of the racist novel The Turner Diaries was found among his things. The book spins a tale about a violent revolution and the overthrow of the US government, and the eventual mass murder and systemic execution of any and all […]

Through the years, legislators of both parties have created and supported laws that hurt working people. But in American history, few laws have done more damage than the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947. Click the link to hear Rick Smith tell the story: On this day in labor history, the year was 1947. That was the […]

It’s difficult to believe that, in the land of the free, a person can go to jail for giving a speech, and an anti-war speech at that. But that’s what happened. Click the video below and read along as Rick Smith tells the story: On this day in labor history, the year was 1918. That […]

“With great power comes great responsibility.” That’s what Uncle Ben said to young Peter Parker in the Spider-Man stories that we all love so much. But in the real world, power doesn’t manifest in wall-crawling, super strength, the ability to fly, or shoot laser beams out of our eyes, etc. In the real world, power […]

On this day in labor history, the year was 1917. That was the day the Granite Mountain and Speculator Mines in Butte, Montana caught fire, killing 168 miners. It is considered the worst underground hard-rock mining disaster in the nation’s history. Just weeks after the United States had entered World War I, the demand for […]

When we negotiate with power for better wages, we rarely fight for everyone. In fact, some of the first groups we negotiate out of the discussion are restaurant workers and tipped workers. Saru Jayaraman, President of One Fair Wage has been a fierce advocate for this particular group of workers, and she explains why in […]

Things are getting scary out there. We have Trump claiming he’ll be reinstated in August, his former National Security Advisor calling for a Myanmar-style military coup over the Memorial Day weekend, and GOP legislatures all over the country doing everything in their power to make sure people of color or anyone else who might vote […]