After Decades Of Corporate ‘Decimation’ Of Unions, Sanders Calls For Workers To Win The Class War Waged Against Them

“If there is going to be class warfare in this country, it’s time that the working class of this country won that war.”

By Jake Johnson
Common Dreams (8/21/19)

After he unveiled a comprehensive plan to double union membership and strengthen labor rights, Sen. Bernie Sanders said during an AFL-CIO event in Iowa on Wednesday that it is time for America’s workers to win the class war against corporate elites.

“If there is going to be class warfare in this country,” said Sanders, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, “it’s time that the working class of this country won that war.”

Sanders explained that, over the past several decades, big corporations and their allies in government have been waging class war against workers, gutting their right to organize and bargain for better wages and working conditions.

“For 45 years there has been a war in this country waged by the corporate elite against the working class of America,” said Sanders. “And the truth of the matter—not talked about in Congress, not talked about in the media—is that as a result of that war against the working class by the corporate elite, what we have seen is the decimation of working families all across this country, while the wealthiest people and largest corporations have done phenomenally well.”

Sanders said rebuilding the American trade union movement is essential to fighting soaring inequality in the United States and securing economic justice for all.

“We must come together and stand up for the working families of this country,” Sanders said, “and finally create an economy and a government that works for all of us, not just the one percent.”

Watch full speech below.

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Bernie Sanders’ Plan To Rebuild Labor Unions Would Be A Huge Win For Working Americans

By Ryan Cooper
The Week (8/22/19)

David Portnoy, the founder of the fratty oaf website Barstool Sports, recently got national press attention for flagrantly violating labor law on Twitter. After sharing an article about how much he hates unions, he threatened that if any of his employees talked to a labor reporter, “I will fire you on the spot.”

Union organizing would explode overnight, working-class wages would soar, and the income of executives and investors would fall sharply. It would be a glorious victory for nearly all of the American people — which is why big business will fight it to their dying breath.

According to the Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Act “forbids employers from interfering with employees in the exercise of rights to form, join or assist a labor organization for collective bargaining.” Portney is now under investigation by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). But, in a mark of the moribund status of American labor law, it is virtually certain that he will not be meaningfully punished — as other right-wing publishers have not in similar circumstances.

Luckily — for Barstool Sports employees but also for anybody who currently has a job, plans to get one in the future, or whose friends and family work — Bernie Sanders is riding to the rescue with a proposal for what would be the most sweeping pro-union program in the history of the United States. It’s not just high time employers were forced to obey the dang law, it’s also a long overdue way to help the American worker.

Unions used to be the foundation of the American middle class, and their deliberate destruction is one major reason why the American economy is so hideously unequal (and prone to crisis). …

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Bernie Talks To Folks At The Minnesota State Fair

Minnesota Public Radio (8/24/19)

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders brought his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination to the Minnesota State Fair on Saturday, touting his strong showing in Minnesota in 2016, sharply criticizing President Trump and saying the rest of the 2020 Democratic candidates are only just now catching up to his policies and positions.

“One of the things that I learned is that many of the ideas I talked about four years ago, that everybody said were crazy, are now being talked about by every other Democratic candidate,” he told MPR News host Tom Crann, after being asked to compare his 2016 and 2020 candidacies. “Maybe that has something to do with leadership, I don’t know. Maybe it has something to do with having the guts to say things that other people are not prepared to say.”

Sanders took part in an interview with Crann at the MPR booth as a raucous crowd of hundreds of supporters and fairgoers looked on. …

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