Solidarity Forever, Solidarity Never

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THE SPINE DECEMBER 5, 2008

Solidarity Forever, Solidarity Never

I am
afraid that the calamity unfolding in the American economy will not
evoke solidarity, even among those who are suffering great diminutions
in life style or among those who are now on the edge of sustenance.  

It
is now axiomatic among the hybrid set to argue not only that their cars
are more efficient but that one of the reasons that they can afford to
be more efficient is that the workers who make them (even in America)
get less wages than do those who work on the Chevy assembly line.

Now,
you don't get rich working for GM and you can barely pay two kids'
 tuitions. And I thought that one of the achievements of American
democracy and democratic capitalism was that skilled labor could live
their lives in a comfortably middle class way. So why this bitching
about that imaginary $74 an hour that big three employees are said to
receive?

I understand why the Wall Street
Journal is indignant with the differentials between auto workers who
toil for a domestically owned automobile company and those who toil for
Toyota. But why should left-wing academics who, as Ron Radosh points
out in his at once devastating and heartbreaking blog, generally
boycott American cars now also join in the union bashing?

Solidarity forever. Solidarity never.

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