Day: October 18, 2021

Background Briefing: October 18, 2021


Labor Fights Back Against Inequality With 176 Strikes Launched So Far This Year

We begin with the uptick in strikes across the country taking place with 176 launched this year so far and get an analysis of what is behind this post-Covid release of pressure in workplaces as billionaires make record profits and the cost of living rises. Joining us is an organizer, author and scholar Jane McAlevey, The Nation magazine’s strikes correspondent who is currently a senior policy fellow at the University of California at Berkeley’s Labor Center. The author of A Collective Bargain: Unions, Organizing and the Fight for Democracy, we discuss this new era in labor relations and the reform movements underway inside unions at the Teamsters and the UAW among others, and how it was the rank and file of the 10,000 UAW workers at the John Deere facility in Waterloo, Iowa who walked off the job after rejecting a two-tier agreement their union leaders made with management.


As Haiti Collapses, Kidnapping and Extortion Now Claims U.S. Missionaries

Then we examine the state collapse in Haiti that has led to criminal gangs controlling transportation routes and neighborhoods whose leaders are intimidating what passes for a government while engaged in the kidnapping and extortion of dirt-poor citizens and now U.S. missionaries. Brian Concannon, a human rights lawyer and founder and former director of the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti who served as a Human Rights Officer with the U.N. in Haiti, joins us to discuss how decades of U.S. puppeteering that has prevented the Haitian people from electing a government that serves them, has now resulted in a failed state we are making worse by deporting desperate Haitians back to chaos and lawlessness.


Inside the Far-Right International Network Ted Cruz and Tucker Carlson Are Embracing

Then finally we speak with Cas Mudde, a professor in the school of public and international affairs at the University of Georgia as well as a Professor at the Center for Research on Extremism at the University of Oslo. The host of the podcast RADICAAL, his latest book is The Far Right Today and he is a columnist at The Guardian where his latest article is “Surprised to see U.S. Republicans cozying up to the European far-right? Don’t be.” We discuss the four major strands of the far-right international network that Ted Cruz and Tucker Carlson are embracing and participating in.