Working on the Coffee Line

barista1The image of a cheerful, energetic coffee shop worker, also known as a “barista,” is something that many people find both familiar and comforting. At both corporate coffee chains and small neighborhood cafes, the image of that pleasant, happy-go-lucky worker is both heavily promoted and culturally expected. Very few customers expect their beverage—costing on average between four and six dollars—to be served by an apathetic, exhausted barista with little energy left to paste on a smile for them.

Election 2012 and the Auto Industry

robama1With the long-running Republican Party primaries finally winding down, it looks like millionaire front-runner Mitt Romney will face President Obama in the November elections. Not surprisingly, the topic that will likely dominate the elections is the economy. One area where Obama and Romney have already begun debating is over the auto industry. But are the two parties’ policies really that different?

Utah Attacks Collective Bargaining

kgroverA new piece of anti-union legislation was introduced in Utah in January by Republican Rep. Keith Grover. HB106, formally named “Limitation on Collective Bargaining,” seeks to prohibit the collective bargaining rights of state and local government employees. Over the last year we have seen a number of attacks on the right of the American working class to collectively bargain.

Labor's Reply to NYPD surveillance

nypdspying1The information that has leaked regarding the NYPD and CIA’s secret monitoring of Muslim stores, student organizations, and mosques in New Jersey, New York, and Long Island has elicited feelings of outrage. The NYPD has even recorded conversations between Muslim individuals, making extensive reports of the activities of Muslim-related stores, businesses and organizations, and closely observed the operations of these groups/establishments. All of these covert operations are being conducted unbeknownst to the “subjects” of observation and without their consent.

Attacks on NY Public Sector Workers Intensify: How Can Labor Fight Back?

nypubPublic sector workers in New York State and City continue to be attacked by Governor Cuomo and Mayor “1%” Bloomberg. These attacks are part of a nationwide effort, in fact, as part of an international strategy, to make the workers both in the public and private sector pay for the continuing crisis of capitalism. The working class can stop these attacks and go on to the offensive, but for this to happen we need a different policy from the labor leaders.