Thursday, March 2, 2017

#61 / One Smart Woman

Jane McAlevey is a labor union organizer. She is pictured above. The picture comes from a recent interview, published in  The Nation.

In These Times, another progressive magazine, has also written about McAlevey. Both magazines commented specifically on McAlevey's latest book, No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age.

I haven't read the book (yet), but I particularly liked the interview in The Nation. I recommend it to you. That interview outlined what the "no shortcuts" message means, in the context of labor union organizing. I found out about "structure tests," and about the difference between "mobilizing," "advocacy," and "organizing." I also found out why "organizing for power" requires the direct and continuing involvement of ordinary workers, right from the start.

Anyone wanting to understand the challenges facing the labor movement today will benefit from reading what McAlevey has to say on that topic.

Anyone wanting to turn around politics in the United States of America will benefit from noticing how well her lessons for labor organizing translate into lessons for political organizing in the electoral arena.

If ordinary men and women want to take their country back, they need to understand that what they want is political "power." Let's not be coy.

They also need to understand that Facebook postings and rallies at the courthouse are not going to get them the power they ought to be working for.

In other words, "no shortcuts."

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