Category Archives: union

The rabbi in Pullman

The Pullman debates were today. Listening to my students, working in characters in groups of two or three, as George Pullman (dressed in tails), Attorney General Olney (in a proper beard and a suit accompanied with a light saber), Governor Altgeld, … Continue reading

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Happy Labor Day

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History isn’t supposed to repeat itself

The annual Pullman debates were today. The students take on the roles of Jane Addams, Eugene Debs (founder of the ARU-American Railway Union), George Pullman, Pullman Workers, the GMA (General Managers Association- a group of Railroad CEOs), Governor Altgeld, Rev. … Continue reading

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All thumbs for contract resolution

I could have left work early today, but I wanted to stay until the vote was counted for the ratification of our contract. Not that I was physically needed to do so, but it was a way for me to … Continue reading

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Wrestling toward resolution

Collective bargaining can be like swimming in a sea of coded words, speaking English as a foreign language, being bilingual in English and English. Negotiating a contract with administrators is like trying to break hieroglyphic code, to unravel linguistic secrets, … Continue reading

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“…pleading for a time when hatred and cruelty will not control the hearts of men.”

Clarence Darrow died today in 1938. For the last 50 years, civil rights activists, lawyers, and labor leaders have gathered on this date to toss a wreath into the Jackson Park Lagoon from the Clarence Darrow Memorial Bridge, where his … Continue reading

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Rachel Maddow: State Politics Go Nuclear

This is Maddow’s broadcast from March 10, 2011, which is about the wider ideological agenda that is demonstrated by the stripping of public workers’ collective bargaining rights in Wisconsin and threatened elsewhere. We must stay engaged and actively work to … Continue reading

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Complex promises and calculated intention

Another 4 hours of negotiating last night. (I am on our union’s negotiating team for our next teachers’ contract.) Let’s see… It has been eight, maybe ten 4 hour meetings already. And still many more to go. It’s a slow … Continue reading

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What have the unions ever done for us?

This was produced by Manic Times out of Australia. It speaks for itself. A couple of terms you’ll need to know: Superannuation: the Australian version of our Social Security Award System: Australian standards (legally binding) that set out minimum terms … Continue reading

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Debs ate his bribe

Today were our Pullman Strike debates. Jane Addams, Eugene Debs, Governor Altgeld, Attorney General Olney, General Miles and the Federal Troops, George Pullman, the General Managers Association (GMA), Reverend Carwardine, and Pullman workers were at the table negotiating, something that … Continue reading

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