collective bargaining

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pages: 423 words: 92,798

No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age by Jane F. McAlevey

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, call centre, clean water, collective bargaining, feminist movement, hiring and firing, immigration reform, informal economy, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, Naomi Klein, new economy, Occupy movement, precariat, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, single-payer health, The Chicago School, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, women in the workforce

It’s also a good test of whether or not a union is democratic. If the union is truly an organization of the workers, why wouldn’t any worker be invited to at least observe his or her own contract negotiations? Three questions can determine whether or not the union is a third party in the renegotiation of a collective bargaining agreement: Does the process involve every worker? Are negotiations fully transparent? Can any worker attend? In the New Labor mobilizing model, most collective bargaining is handled in top-down, staff-only negotiations with employers. If workers are present, there will typically be very few, say between five and ten, no matter how many thousands of workers are involved. Those chosen few are not expected, or even allowed, to speak during the negotiations. This process creates and solidifies the idea that the union is, in fact, a third party.

By constantly engaging in strikes and by practicing what is called open collective bargaining negotiations, 1199NE is constantly engaging in the hardest of structure tests—that is, tests that measure both union democracy and the participation levels of the rank and file. In the same period—more than a decade—that Rolf has exercised jurisdiction over nursing homes in Washington, 1199NE in Connecticut has run almost sixty successful NLRB elections: some big, some small. Like the Washington union, Connecticut’s leadership places a premium on securing multiemployer election procedure neutrality agreements. But unlike the Washington union’s agreement, 1199NE’s neutrality agreements are won by worker power and negotiated across the bargaining table, with workers in the room, in a collective-bargaining process transparent and open to all members of the union.

For example, in section one of the document, the company was ordered to “cease and desist” a series of behaviors so lengthy that in listing them the NLRB judge exhausted the letters in the alphabet, starting over after “z” with “aa.” They began on page 14, starting with a: The employer shall cease and desist from “threatening employees with plant closure if they select the Union as their collective bargaining agent,” and going all the way through to ee: “In any other manner interfering with, restraining, or coercing its employees in the exercise of their rights.” In particular, x through aa offer sobering insights into and evidence of what the employees had faced in the 1997 election: the company is to “cease and desist from” x Threating employees that wages would be frozen if the Union were elected as the collective bargaining representative; y Assaulting employees in retaliation for their union activities. z Causing the arrest of employees in retaliation for their union activities. aa Threatening violence in retaliation for employee activities.


pages: 667 words: 149,811

Economic Dignity by Gene Sperling

active measures, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bernie Sanders, Cass Sunstein, collective bargaining, corporate governance, David Brooks, desegregation, Detroit bankruptcy, Donald Trump, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, Elon Musk, employer provided health coverage, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ferguson, Missouri, full employment, gender pay gap, ghettoisation, gig economy, Gini coefficient, guest worker program, Gunnar Myrdal, housing crisis, income inequality, invisible hand, job automation, job satisfaction, labor-force participation, late fees, liberal world order, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, mass incarceration, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, minimum wage unemployment, obamacare, offshore financial centre, payday loans, price discrimination, profit motive, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, speech recognition, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Toyota Production System, traffic fines, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, union organizing, universal basic income, War on Poverty, working poor, young professional, zero-sum game

Numerous factors compound the vulnerability of these workers to abuses: they are often racial and ethnic minorities; large numbers lack work authorization; the workforces are extremely low paid, with little savings to fall back on; most have low levels of education; and many have limited English proficiency. Domestic workers by definition work in isolation behind closed doors in private homes, and farmworkers face their own unique challenges that make it hard to execute collective bargaining. Many of these workers believe they have few labor market options and little or no recourse to wage theft, on-the-job injuries, and verbal, sexual, and racial harassment. Both farmworkers and domestic workers were excluded from critical New Deal legislation. These exclusionary laws included the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) of 1935, which guaranteed the right to form a union and to collective bargaining; the Social Security Act of 1935, which established not just an old-age pension but unemployment insurance and workers’ compensation; and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which enacted protections such as overtime rules, minimum wage, and limits on child labor.

AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka frequently reminds audiences that public support for unions is near its highest level in fifty years, at 64 percent.39 A Pew poll shows that 75 percent of millennials have a favorable view of unions.40 Trumka also points to polls that show nearly 60 million more nonunionized American workers would join a union if given the opportunity.41 In February 2018, teachers in West Virginia—responding to low salaries and inadequate benefits in the face of rising health-care costs—organized a walkout and a protest at the state capitol attended by thousands,42 which Randi Weingarten, head of the American Federation of Teachers, called a “fight for dignity and respect.”43 These strikes have inspired teachers’ unions to organize actions demanding more education funding and higher salaries in a diverse group of other states, including Kentucky, Oklahoma, Colorado, Arizona, and North Carolina with exceptionally strong public support.44 In 2018, UNITE HERE locals representing Marriott hotel workers in major cities across the nation won not only raises and improved benefits but also a landmark agreement to be consulted on the use of new technology and automation.45 In 2019, legislation was introduced that would rewrite labor laws by imposing stricter remedies on employers for illegal activities, strengthen the power of strikers, and facilitate collective bargaining—the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act—which Trumka called “our strongest bill yet.”46 It has enough cosponsors to pass the House47 and is endorsed by most of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates. The PRO Act would go further, banning the type of intimidating action that Kumho Tire took against the United Steelworkers (USW). Former USW president Leo Gerard described these tactics, including firing the leader of the organizing drive, as “daily, mandatory captive audience meetings, designed to coerce workers into voting against union representation,” and a series of additional actions that “violate the intent of the NLRA, which was to encourage collective bargaining, not hinder it.”48 We must repair the damage done to traditional collective bargaining.

Kroc went on to lead a nationwide franchise model that became an industry practice for fast food. The practice of franchising has made it nearly impossible for fast-food workers to take advantage of traditional collective bargaining. Under the NLRA, if a majority of workers within a unit designate a union to bargain on their behalf, that union represents all employees within that unit. However, in the fast-food case, because an individual franchise or small number of locations are typically established as separate corporate organizations, workers are considered employees of the individual franchise (rather than the corporation itself) and therefore would have to organize at the franchise level to gain collective bargaining rights.54 This kind of dispersion of workers makes it nearly impossible to organize through traditional routes, especially when employees turn over frequently, as they do in the fast-food industry.


pages: 322 words: 84,580

The Economics of Belonging: A Radical Plan to Win Back the Left Behind and Achieve Prosperity for All by Martin Sandbu

"Robert Solow", Airbnb, autonomous vehicles, balance sheet recession, bank run, banking crisis, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Boris Johnson, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, carbon footprint, Carmen Reinhart, centre right, collective bargaining, debt deflation, deindustrialization, deskilling, Diane Coyle, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial intermediation, full employment, future of work, gig economy, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, intangible asset, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labour market flexibility, liquidity trap, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Martin Wolf, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mini-job, mortgage debt, new economy, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open economy, pattern recognition, pink-collar, precariat, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, Richard Florida, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, secular stagnation, social intelligence, TaskRabbit, total factor productivity, universal basic income, very high income, winner-take-all economy, working poor

And while the amount of wealth in Western societies has grown much faster than incomes, governments get no more of their revenues from taxes on wealth holdings than before. Where and from whom tax is levied has failed to keep up with the changing market distribution of wealth, let alone been used as a countervailing force. Next, consider government support for the role of collective bargaining to shape the wage structure and the wage-profit split. In some countries this has been preserved, notably in Scandinavia, where collective bargaining supports a collaborative relationship between employers and employees that has contributed to easing the adjustment to technological change. Elsewhere, however, collective bargaining has been eroded by governments sometimes deliberately acting to weaken unions. The iconic case comes from the first year of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, when he refused to accommodate demands by the air traffic controllers. In the standoff that followed, the union (which had endorsed Reagan as president) was crushed as the government managed to keep planes flying until striking controllers threw in the towel.

The aim of policy should therefore be to restore or preserve the function unions have fulfilled at their best, not necessarily the institutional form in which they did so in the past. Sometimes, that may involve creating alternatives for unions rather than strengthening them. There are a number of policy tools that can ensure this. Administrative extension of collective bargaining. Where unions have declined in reach but still play a constructive function, governments can widen the effect of union-employer bargaining beyond the scope of union members. Through legislation or executive decrees, terms agreed to in collective bargaining in one part of a sector can be made to apply to the sector as a whole, in effect making the union give voice not just to its own members but to all those in a similar situation. This is a way to put in place what are effectively legal wage floors and minimum standards (even if differentiated by sector), which, as the previous chapter showed, can have positive effects on productivity as well as on workers’ well-being.

But when those standards themselves result from social conventions or an institutionalised balance of power, it may require new legislative or policy actions to compensate for a weakening of traditional norms and institutions. A case in point is the tightening of EU rules on “posted workers”—those working outside the country where they are formally employed—to make host-country rules kick in sooner and more comprehensively. Another example is when Norway resorted to administrative extensions of collective bargaining outcomes in sectors with a lot of migrant workers. This established sectoral minimum wages in all but name in a country where this was traditionally left to collective bargaining. In finance, too, it is possible to regulate in such a way that capital flows from other countries do not escape the strictures imposed on domestic capital, without putting barriers in the way of cross-border money. I have already explained the room for national policy manoeuvre in taxation (chapter 10) and “macroprudential” regulation of financial services (chapter 9).7 When a bank is situated beyond your country’s border but has the right—thanks to financial globalisation—to lend to your country’s citizens, how do you make such regulations work?


pages: 477 words: 135,607

The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Bigger by Marc Levinson

"Robert Solow", air freight, anti-communist, barriers to entry, Bay Area Rapid Transit, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, Edward Glaeser, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, global supply chain, intermodal, Isaac Newton, job automation, Jones Act, knowledge economy, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, Network effects, New Economic Geography, new economy, oil shock, Panamax, Port of Oakland, post-Panamax, Productivity paradox, refrigerator car, South China Sea, trade route, Works Progress Administration, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

The split among PMA members is detailed in Fairley, Facing Mechanization, p. 125, and Winter, “Thirty Years of Collective Bargaining,” chap. 5. Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 99–100, discusses opposition within the ILWU. Nearly one-third of San Francisco longshoremen were over age fifty-four, and only 11 percent were younger than thirty-five. See Robert W. Cherny, “Longshoremen of San Francisco Bay, 1849–1960,” in Da-vies et al., Dock Workers, 1:137. 27. Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 164–66. 28. Ibid., pp. 124–44 and 272–279; Finlay, Work on the Waterfront, p. 65. 29. Hartman quotation, Collective Bargaining, p. 150; on “Bridges loads,” see Larrowe, Harry Bridges, p. 356. 30. Bridges statement in ILWU/PMA joint meeting, August 7, 1963, quoted in Hartman, Collective Bargaining, p. 147; arbitration award ibid., p. 148. 31. Cost savings from ibid., p. 178; container statistics derived from ibid., pp. 160 and 270.

Part One: ‘The Good Old Days’ “(Berkeley, 1978), p. 21; Fairley, Facing Mechanization, p. 48; Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 73–83. 18. Jennifer Marie Winter, “Thirty Years of Collective Bargaining: Joseph Paul St. Sure, Management Labor Negotiator 1902–1966” (M.A. thesis, California State University at Sacramento, 1991), chap. 4. In one well-known incident, the permanent labor arbitrator in the port of San Francisco was called to a ship to deal with a safety grievance and found only four workers on the job, sitting in the hold, drinking coffee. The rest of their gang, he was informed, had gone to a ball game and would come to work at midnight. See Larrowe, Harry Bridges, p. 352. Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 84–88; ILWU, “Coast Labor Relations Committee Report,” October 15, 1957. 19. Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 87–89; Sidney Roger, “A Liberal Journalist on the Air and on the Waterfront,” interview by Julie Shearer (Berkeley, 1998), p. 616. 20.

Warning about automation appears in ILWU, “Report… to the Thirteenth Biennial Convention,” p. 10. Comment about Bridges is from Roger, “A Liberal Journalist,” p. 187. 22. For more on these talks, see Fairley, Facing Mechanization, pp. 103–104; Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 90–94; Larrowe, Harry Bridges, pp. 352–353. The full text of the ILA proposal is reprinted in Fairley, Facing Mechanization, p. 80. 23. Fairley, Facing Mechanization, pp. 122–129; Hartman, Collective Bargaining, pp. 96–97; Winter, “Thirty Years of Collective Bargaining,” chap. 5. Savings per hour calculated from data in Hartman, Collective Bargaining, p. 123. 24. Fairley, Facing Mechanization, pp. 132–133, and Germain Bulcke, “Longshore Leader and ILWU-Pacific Maritime Association Arbitrator,” interview by Estolv Ethan Ward, (Berkeley, 1984), p. 66. 25. Pacific Maritime Association and ILWU, “Memorandum of Agreement on Mechanization and Modernization,” October 18, 1960; Ross, “Waterfront Labor Response,” p. 413. 26.


pages: 407 words: 135,242

The Streets Were Paved With Gold by Ken Auletta

British Empire, business climate, clean water, collective bargaining, full employment, Gunnar Myrdal, hiring and firing, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, mortgage debt, Norman Mailer, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, Parkinson's law, Ponzi scheme, price stability, profit motive, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, rent control, Ronald Reagan, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban renewal, War on Poverty, working-age population

In the long run, the city will continue to pay dearly for politicized housing decisions. The Introduction of Collective Bargaining What came to be known as the “Little Wagner Act” was in fact the Big Wagner Act for municipal labor unions. On March 31, 1958, Mayor Robert F. Wagner signed an executive order granting 100,000 employees the right to join the union of their choice and to bargain collectively, which implied the right to strike. In retrospect, one would think this an easy decision. It was not. The Mayor’s advisers were strongly divided. One group argued that unions were just another special interest and that granting them too much power would whet their appetites, encourage inflated settlements and give unions too much sway over elected officials; the opposition countered that collective bargaining would impose an orderly machinery for the settlement of disputes, bring stability, promote efficiency, do justice to workers.

In addition to their ability to paralyze the city with a strike, as the transit union proved in 1966 and the bridge tenders in 1971, over the years the unions gained management powers and became partners in the city’s governance. Executive Order No. 52, signed by Mayor Lindsay on September 29, 1967, allowed such previous management prerogatives as “workload and manning” to be placed on the collective bargaining table. Everything became negotiable. “Collective bargaining has become a means not only for determining the wages and conditions of employment of public employees,” writes former city Personnel Director Sol Hoberman, “but also for modifying the nature of public service and the role, authority and responsibilities of the Mayor, the City Council, and agency heads.” Union contracts now determine class size and welfare caseloads.

On January 4, 1967, Mayor Lindsay’s Office of Collective Bargaining (OCB) passed the dispute on to an impasse panel for study. The panel recommended a compromise, one which rewarded police sergeants less than fire lieutenants but widened the gap between a sergeant’s and a patrolman’s pay. Lindsay accepted their recommendations. The result was a truce. A brief one. Two years later, sergeants again complained that they should be equal to fire lieutenants; patrolmen complained that the gap between their pay and sergeants’ pay was too wide. The patrolmen’s union, the PBA, threatened to strike. Their timing could not have been better. Lindsay was seeking reelection, and the last thing he wanted was another strike. On April 29, 1969, Herbert L. Haber, Lindsay’s Director of the Office of Collective Bargaining, quietly initialed an agreement with the PBA granting patrolmen what they wanted, including a $2,700 retroactive bonus.


The New Class War: Saving Democracy From the Metropolitan Elite by Michael Lind

affirmative action, anti-communist, basic income, Bernie Sanders, Boris Johnson, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, centre right, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate governance, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, Doha Development Round, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, future of work, global supply chain, guest worker program, Haight Ashbury, illegal immigration, immigration reform, invisible hand, knowledge economy, liberal world order, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, means of production, moral panic, Nate Silver, new economy, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open borders, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, regulatory arbitrage, rent-seeking, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trade liberalization, union organizing, universal basic income, upwardly mobile, WikiLeaks, Wolfgang Streeck, working poor

The tripartite approach also rejects excessive government micromanagement of minimum wages and working conditions using one-size-fits-all rules. Some minimum standards are necessary, but many decisions should be left to collective bargaining among organized capital and organized labor, brokered by national governments. Tripartite institutions that enable business-labor negotiations over wages, working conditions, and investment decisions have always come in different forms that are appropriate in different sectors. The kind of collective bargaining most familiar to Americans, and most despised by managers, not without justification, is “enterprise bargaining”—the unionization of particular companies or particular work sites, one by one, in an adversarial and disruptive process. In other countries, collective bargaining among labor representatives and business representatives takes place at the national or regional level and results in decisions that are binding on all firms and labor organizations within a sector.

But the unregulated labor market is partly replaced by a state-brokered system of bargaining over wages and working conditions among employers or employer associations and independent trade unions or other labor organizations.16 Elaborate forms of national sectoral bargaining among employers and labor unions were created in postwar Sweden and Austria. In the Federal Republic of Germany, collective bargaining was supplemented by codetermination, the practice of having union representatives on the boards of large corporations. In France, union membership has always been relatively low, but the results of employer-union bargaining have covered great numbers of workers. One study notes: “The shadows of Fascism and/or foreign threat were decisive or at least significant in all the most successful and enduring peace settlements.”17 The labor historian Nelson Lichtenstein points out: “Building upon the framework established by the National War Labor Board, the big industrial unions settled into a postwar collective-bargaining routine that increased real weekly wages some 50% in the next two decades and greatly expanded their fringe benefit welfare packages.”18 Following the Treaty of Detroit in 1950—a five-year contract negotiated by the United Auto Workers with General Motors—and similar deals, the US had a de facto system of democratic corporatism in its concentrated manufacturing sector, which by means of “pattern bargaining” informally set standards for wages and benefits in many nonunionized sectors.

Instead of the sectoral minimum wages and working hours and pensions that were to have been agreed on in each industry by business and labor and ratified by the NRA, the federal government directly imposed a one-size-fits-all national minimum wage and eight-hour day in 1938, in addition to the federal Social Security program that was enacted earlier in 1935. The Wagner Act of 1935 turned section 7(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act into the statute that, as amended, governs collective bargaining in the United States to this day. * * * — DURING WORLD WAR II, many Western governments promised their soldiers and workers a better life after the Axis alliance of National Socialist Germany, Fascist Italy, and Imperial Japan was defeated. In Britain the Beveridge Report, calling for a massive expansion of welfare services for the working class, was published in November 1942 and helped to inspire the postwar National Health Service.


pages: 518 words: 147,036

The Fissured Workplace by David Weil

accounting loophole / creative accounting, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, banking crisis, barriers to entry, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, call centre, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate governance, corporate raider, Corrections Corporation of America, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, employer provided health coverage, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, George Akerlof, global supply chain, global value chain, hiring and firing, income inequality, information asymmetry, intermodal, inventory management, Jane Jacobs, Kenneth Rogoff, law of one price, loss aversion, low skilled workers, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, occupational segregation, Paul Samuelson, performance metric, pre–internet, price discrimination, principal–agent problem, Rana Plaza, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, Ronald Coase, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, statistical model, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Nature of the Firm, transaction costs, ultimatum game, union organizing, women in the workforce, yield management

In a large organization, vertical equity issues like these can be particularly vexing. Unionized workplaces in traditional manufacturing solved this problem through collectively bargained deals that linked these grades—often providing for upward ratcheting of the whole wage system (leaving relative wages intact) over time. The collectively bargained contract creates a transparent set of expectations of what is fair (in part because it reflects the preferences of the workforce, at least as represented by the union’s negotiating committee). Large nonunion workplaces also must accommodate the demands of vertical equity in setting compensation policies, even though unfettered by collective bargaining. Higher wages in part reflect an effort to avoid unionization, but also to avoid the kind of internal frictions described above.26 In his studies of wage policies, Bewley also found that nonunion executives justified formal internal pay structures on the basis of equity.27 Although they acknowledged that differences in pay between grades proved useful as incentives, 69% of the businesses interviewed cited “internal equity, internal harmony, fairness, and good morale” as the principal justification.28 A repercussion of the need to satisfy vertical equity demand is that a large employer might end up paying workers at lower ends of the wage system a higher wage than it might prefer in order to preserve internal labor market peace.

As the elected representative of workers, a union has incentives to act on behalf of the collective interests of members in the bargaining unit.18 Unions are able to gather and disseminate information on workplace laws and rights at low cost, and provide this information through educational programs and apprenticeship training or by alerting members of their rights where a problem or issue arises. Unions also offer individual workers assistance in the exercise of their rights. This may result from the operation of committees established under collective bargaining, as is common in safety and health, or via the help of union staff who can trigger inspections, oversee pension fund investments, or help members file unemployment claims. Most importantly, unions can substantially reduce the costs associated with potential employer discrimination by helping affected employees use antidiscrimination provisions of the labor policies and providing this protection via collective bargaining agreements regulating dismissals. There is now over two decades of evidence demonstrating that workers are more likely to exercise rights given the presence of a labor union. Workers in unionized workplaces are more likely to exercise rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, the Mine Safety and Health Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, and a variety of other federal statutes.

The Fair Labor Standards Act, which sets minimum wage and overtime standards and regulates child labor, defines an employee as “any individual who is employed by an employer” and states that “employ includes to suffer or permit to work.” To help clarify this vague definition, courts apply an economic realities test to evaluate the particular employment situation surrounding a worker and an employer. This potentially gives the agency responsible for enforcement the latitude to adjust to changing employment conditions on the ground.13 The National Labor Relations Act, the federal statute governing union organizing and collective bargaining, also uses an economic reality test for defining employment. However, a Supreme Court decision in 1944 holding that boys who sold newspapers on the street on commission were in fact Hearst employees despite the company’s contention that they were independent contractors led enraged conservatives in Congress to amend the National Labor Relations Act in 1947 to specifically exempt independent contractors.14 This has led historically to very narrow readings of coverage and application of the act.


pages: 207 words: 59,298

The Gig Economy: A Critical Introduction by Jamie Woodcock, Mark Graham

Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, British Empire, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate social responsibility, crowdsourcing, David Graeber, deindustrialization, disintermediation, en.wikipedia.org, full employment, future of work, gender pay gap, gig economy, global value chain, informal economy, information asymmetry, inventory management, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, knowledge economy, Lyft, mass immigration, means of production, Network effects, new economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, planetary scale, precariat, rent-seeking, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, TaskRabbit, The Future of Employment, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, two-sided market, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, union organizing, women in the workforce, working poor, young professional

Three significant dimensions of policy can be identified: a strategy of de-regulation of labour markets and promotion of a low wage, low skill economy as a means of attracting inward investment; competitive tendering and internal markets in the public sector; and the sustained legislative assault on union organisation, employment rights and collective bargaining. This long period of change has shaped the current state of the employment relationship. In particular, the growth of the service industries since the 1970s has seen another phase in which workers have to sell their labour power without much ability to collectively bargain over the terms. At the same time, the labour market was ‘“deregulated” and labour made more “flexible”’, as part of a political project to undermine workers’ rights, restoring ‘management’s “right to manage”’ (Munke, 2005: 63). A key part of this has been ‘a general move away from the full employment goal towards activation policies’ (MacGregor, 2005: 144).

Migrants, for example, are ‘often forced to accept the most precarious contracts, in jobs incommensurate with their skill levels’ (McDowell et al., 2009: 4). The majority of precarious workers are non-unionized and ‘have been marginalized’ (Pollert and Charlwood, 2009: 357), whether through gender, race or migration status. Therefore, those workers who find themselves in low paid ‘non-standard’ work are often not covered by any of the ‘three regulatory regimes – collective bargaining, employment protection rights, and the national insurance system’ (Fredman, 2003: 308). For example, migrant cleaners across London are often not covered by any of these regulatory regimes (Woodcock, 2014b). In the case of migrant cleaners, the gendered and racialized relationships combine to create a deeply exploitative workplace. More broadly, these relationships shape what kinds of work are available to a prospective worker, their likelihood of getting a job, along with their experiences of working it.

However, the decline of traditional trade unionism does not mean that workers do not resist, rather that the resistance is not expressed in forms that have been used previously. This does mean that many workers miss the protection of institutional forms of worker power. In most of the gig economy – despite some exceptions that we will discuss later in the book – there are no active trade unions. This means that management are more likely to act unilaterally, without the checks of collective bargaining or negotiation. Globalization and outsourcing The final precondition that has deeply shaped the gig economy in its current form is a combination of political economy and technology: the effects of globalization and outsourcing. This is a development and intensification of the outsourcing of call centres from high-income countries to low- and middle-income countries, for example, from the UK to India (Taylor and Bain, 2005).


pages: 408 words: 108,985

Rewriting the Rules of the European Economy: An Agenda for Growth and Shared Prosperity by Joseph E. Stiglitz

Airbnb, balance sheet recession, bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Basel III, basic income, Berlin Wall, bilateral investment treaty, business cycle, business process, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, central bank independence, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate raider, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, credit crunch, deindustrialization, discovery of DNA, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial intermediation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, gender pay gap, George Akerlof, gig economy, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, inflation targeting, informal economy, information asymmetry, intangible asset, investor state dispute settlement, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, labor-force participation, liberal capitalism, low skilled workers, market fundamentalism, mini-job, moral hazard, non-tariff barriers, offshore financial centre, open economy, patent troll, pension reform, price mechanism, price stability, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, regulatory arbitrage, rent-seeking, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, TaskRabbit, too big to fail, trade liberalization, transaction costs, transfer pricing, trickle-down economics, tulip mania, universal basic income, unorthodox policies, zero-sum game

Unfortunately, while these abrupt changes generally lowered labor incomes, they did not lead to the promised improvements in dynamic competitiveness, growth, and employment.2 The magnitude and pace of the changes across Europe—and especially in the crisis-stricken countries—has been dramatic. In the first decade of the twenty-first century alone, the coverage of collective agreements in Europe fell from 68 percent to 61 percent of workers.3 In some countries, the decline was precipitous. For example, collective bargaining coverage in Greece fell from around 82 percent of workers before the crisis to 18 percent afterward. In Romania, the decrease was from 85 percent to 35 percent.4 More effective collective bargaining More effective collective bargaining can be reintroduced by adopting several changes: ■ Encourage (rather than discourage) more bargaining at the national and sectoral levels, with flexibility provisions that allow limited deviations in response to special circumstances, but within a framework that is sensitive to how abuse of such flexibility can undermine efforts of workers to bargain collectively.

Strength can also be achieved by limiting the ability of workers to free ride on those who support the union, and also (where relevant) by limiting the scope for management-dictated arbitration systems for dispute resolution. ■ Increase coverage of collective bargaining by making it easier for unions to organize, gain recognition, and collect dues. ■ Reduce the likelihood of a race to the bottom by mandating that basic minimum conditions apply to all workers not covered by more favorable contractual terms. ■ Support collective bargaining for all categories of workers. Sector agreements may help to extend collective bargaining where unionization is low. Raise Minimum Wages The purpose of minimum wages is to protect workers from unduly low pay. A traditional criticism against minimum wages has been that raising the cost of labor might lead to lower employment.

These effects interacted with and compounded the weakening of the financial sector, as money fled from the banking systems of the crisis countries to safer havens, as we have described in earlier chapters. See also Joseph E. Stiglitz, The Euro: How a Common Currency Threatens the Future of Europe (New York: W. W. Norton, 2017). 3. “National Industrial Relations across Europe: Collective Bargaining,” European Trade Union Institute, 2015, accessed Dec. 29, 2018, https://www.worker-participation.eu/National-Industrial-Relations/Across-Europe/Collective-Bargaining2. 4. Trends have differed markedly across Europe. For example, the number of agreements has increased in Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Belgium. But in most countries, measures indicate that the process of collective bargaining is weaker. 5. David Card and Alan Krueger, “Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania,” The American Economic Review 84, no. 4 (Sept. 1994): 772–93. 6.


The Cigarette: A Political History by Sarah Milov

activist lawyer, affirmative action, airline deregulation, American Legislative Exchange Council, barriers to entry, British Empire, collective bargaining, corporate personhood, deindustrialization, fixed income, Frederick Winslow Taylor, G4S, global supply chain, imperial preference, Indoor air pollution, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Kitchen Debate, land tenure, new economy, New Journalism, Philip Mirowski, pink-collar, Potemkin village, precariat, price stability, profit maximization, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, rent-seeking, Silicon Valley, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, Torches of Freedom, trade route, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, War on Poverty, women in the workforce

Bell’s general counsel cited fear of unrest that might follow a unilateral smoke policy change without prior bargaining with the Communications Workers of America (CWA). For Bell to singlehandedly impose a smoking policy in the absence of a judicial mandate would violate the collective-bargaining agreement between the company and its largest union. Bell was unwilling to take such a risk. By inviting the court to require a smoke-free accommodation for Shimp, Bell exacerbated conflict between Shimp and her union, which jealously guarded the collective-bargaining agreement from court interference.24 In her proposal, Shimp insisted that “employees deserve the same protection afforded the machinery so vital to our communications network, as the human body cannot be duplicated.” Bell, it seems, took at least this part of Shimp’s proposal seriously.

As she wrote to a fellow employee as her trial was unfolding in 1975, “I feel the only way we are going to gain recognition of the real health hazard of ‘second hand smoke’ is through collective action.”95 But action to clear the air at work put the nonsmokers’ movement on a collision course with the closest thing the postwar labor movement had to a sacred cow: collective bargaining. The nonsmokers’ movement arrived at work just as a range of new forces—feminism, the Quality of Work Life movement, the rise of public sector unions, the occupational health movement—complicated labor’s traditionally male-dominated, seniority-centered, bread-and-butter prerogatives.96 On procedural, political, and policy grounds, union leadership and nonsmoker advocates were at odds. From the perspective of organized labor, Shimp established a dangerous precedent: it substituted a judge’s decision for a provision of the collective-bargaining agreement. Indeed, Donna Shimp fought both her employer and her union, the CWA, when she sued New Jersey Bell. The managerial arguments proffered by tobacco’s foes could hardly be expected to resonate with unions that sought to represent all workers, not just those that were cheapest for a company to employ.

Her advice to such groups was always the same: enlist the support of organized labor in crafting policy so that collective-bargaining agreements limit rather than permit smoking. She traversed the United States and spoke internationally on how unions could embrace smoking bans as part of a broader commitment to workplace “health rights.”104 EIA authored models for bargaining, policy suggestions, educational literature, and blueprints for cessation and addiction workshops.105 Despite the praise Shimp heaped upon the union officials who represented nonsmoking workers at grievance hearings, it was impossible for nonsmoking advocates not to applaud management for initiating smoking bans even when they subverted collective-bargaining agreements. Nowhere was the tension between nonsmokers’ rights and unionism on greater display than in EIA’s support for Johns-Manville’s smoking ban.


pages: 332 words: 89,668

Two Nations, Indivisible: A History of Inequality in America: A History of Inequality in America by Jamie Bronstein

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, back-to-the-land, barriers to entry, basic income, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, blue-collar work, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, Community Supported Agriculture, corporate personhood, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, desegregation, Donald Trump, ending welfare as we know it, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, Gini coefficient, income inequality, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, labor-force participation, land reform, land tenure, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, mandatory minimum, mass incarceration, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, moral panic, mortgage debt, New Urbanism, non-tariff barriers, obamacare, occupational segregation, Occupy movement, oil shock, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price discrimination, race to the bottom, rent control, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Sam Peltzman, Scientific racism, Simon Kuznets, single-payer health, strikebreaker, too big to fail, trade route, transcontinental railway, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, trickle-down economics, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, wage slave, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration

While Roosevelt reached out to his labor constituency through the Fair Labor Standards Act, which recognized the right to unionize and created the National Labor Relations Board, labor unions and Democratic politicians were divided on the advisability of a minimum wage.73 The AFL favored collective bargaining between (its mostly skilled, male) employees and their employers. The Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), which was more inclusive, endorsed a minimum wage because it offered a starting point for collective bargaining rather than a ceiling.74 The Democratic Party was divided because the labor market in the United States was segmented. Southern workers earned lower wages, lowering the cost of production in the South and promoting southern competitiveness. For example, in North Carolina, farmers objected to the introduction of federal jobs because they interfered with their ability to hire black farm laborers and domestic workers at prevailing (low) wages.

Moreover, if American industries were protected, American manufacturing workers could earn higher wages and avoid becoming impoverished like English factory workers.22 Newly enfranchised workingmen not only participated in presidential elections and shaped concerns about inequality at the national level, they also participated in a popular politics much closer to the ground. As historian Paul Gilje shows, the nature of rioting changed in the 1820s and 1830s from deferential crowd behavior to “collective bargaining by riot.” This tactic spread from the ranks of unskilled laborers, who traditionally had little leverage, to journeymen in the skilled trades, who felt increasingly pressed between an affluent class of master craftsmen and a large pool of partly trained workers who were capable of doing the journeymen’s jobs for less money. Working people in this period talked not about class but rather about productivity as indicative of social worth, since productivity illustrated a “virtuous, honest, hardworking citizenry.”23 This social critique implicitly rejected the “gentility” to which the middle and upper classes aspired.

But in the first few decades of the twentieth century, third parties also emerged, deploying a more critical language of class. Voters’ options ranged from the Progressive Party to the Socialist Party, the Farmer-Labor Party, and the Workers’ Party. Rather than seek revolution, the Socialist Party, which nominated Eugene V. Debs for president in 1912, pursued legislation that benefited workers, like child labor legislation and workers’ compensation, and the strategy of collective bargaining.46 The Socialist Party also advocated for votes for women, who could see that the state might serve to assist rather than to hinder them. Socialist parties elected 12,000 candidates to office in 340 cities in 1912, and Eugene Debs attracted 6 percent of the popular vote. Once in office, Socialist city officers addressed crucial working-class issues like sanitation, zoning, and improvement of squalid working-class neighborhoods.47 But their reach was limited, because despite their gradualism, they were met with antisocialist hysteria that culminated in the first Red Scare of the late 1910s.


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The End of Work by Jeremy Rifkin

banking crisis, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, blue-collar work, cashless society, collective bargaining, computer age, deskilling, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, employer provided health coverage, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, future of work, general-purpose programming language, George Gilder, global village, hiring and firing, informal economy, interchangeable parts, invention of the telegraph, Jacques de Vaucanson, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, land reform, low skilled workers, means of production, new economy, New Urbanism, Paul Samuelson, pink-collar, post-industrial society, Productivity paradox, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, speech recognition, strikebreaker, technoutopianism, Thorstein Veblen, Toyota Production System, trade route, trickle-down economics, women in the workforce, working poor, working-age population, Works Progress Administration

The end of World War II brought a wave of labor unrest. Angry over wage freezes imposed during the war and anxious to make up for ground lost in collective bargaining because of the no-strike pledge during the conflict, organized labor began to challenge management on a wide front. Between 1945 and 1955, the United States experienced over 43,000 strikes in the most concentrated wave of labor/management confrontations in industrial history.27 Crossing into the High-Tech Frontier 67 Management were growing concerned over what they perceived as organized labors invasion of their traditional terrain. Issues of hiring and firing, promotions, discipline actions, health benefits, and safety concerns were brought into the collective bargaining process in every industry. Business Week warned that "the time has come to take a stand ... against the further encroachment into the province of management."28 Menaced by the increasing intensi ty of labor's demands and determined to maintain its long-standing control over the means of production, America's industrial giants turned to the new technology of automation as much to rid themselves of rebellious workers as to enhance their productivity and profit.

The prospect of labor displacement can be eased, in part, by joint consultation between companies and unions and by management planning to schedule the introduction of automation in periods of high employment, to permit attrition, reduce the size of the labor force, and to allow time for the retraining of employees. 17 The AFL-CIO passed a number of resolutions at its annual conventions in the 1960s, calling for retraining provisions in collective bargaining agreements. Employers were more than willing to concede 86 THE THIRD INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION to labor's new demands. The costs of introducing retraining programs was far less onerous than the prospect of a long and protracted battle with labor over the introduction of new automated technologies on the shop floor. Between 1960 and 1967, the percentage of collective bargaining agreements containing provisions for job retraining increased from 12 percent to more than 40 percent. iS Labor also lent its political muscle to federal legislation to promote job retraining. In 1962 the AFL-CIO mobilized rank-and-file support behind the passage of the Manpower Development Training Act, which was designed to provide retraining for workers displaced by automation.

., Automation: Implications for the Future (New York: Vintage Books, 1962), pp. 269, 275- 276. 15. Noble, p. 250. 16. Ibid., p. 253. 17. CIO Committee on Economic Policy, Automation (Washington, D.e.: Congress of Independent Organizations, 1955), pp. 21-22. 18. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Major Collective Bargaining AgreementsTraining and Retraining Provisions, Bulletin no. 1425-7 (Washington, D.e.: Government Printing Office, 1969), p. 4; U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Characteristics of Major Collective Bargaining Agreements, January 1, 1980, Bulletin no. 2095, p. 105. 19. Kalleberg, Arne L., et al., "Labor in the Newspaper Industry," in Cornfield, Daniel B., Workers, Managers and Technological Change: Emerging Patterns of Labor Relations (New York: Plenum Press, 1987), p. 64. 20. Raskin, A. H., ''A Reporter at Large: Part I, 'Changes in the Balance of Power'; Part II, 'Intrigue at the Summit,''' The New Yorker, January 22, 29, 1979.


pages: 236 words: 67,953

Brave New World of Work by Ulrich Beck

affirmative action, anti-globalists, Asian financial crisis, basic income, Berlin Wall, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, Fall of the Berlin Wall, feminist movement, full employment, future of work, Gunnar Myrdal, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, job automation, knowledge worker, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, low skilled workers, McJob, means of production, mini-job, post-work, postnationalism / post nation state, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, rising living standards, Silicon Valley, working poor, working-age population, zero-sum game

Many women would like to take a break, but do not do so because they fear ending up in the ‘part-time ghetto of the moving track’ (Suzanne Franks). Basically, this raises the question of how a postnational yet political civil society is possible in Europe. My answer is as follows. Only if the insecure new forms of paid employment are converted into a right to multiple work, a right to discontinuity, a right to choose working hours, a right to sovereignty over working time enshrined in collective-bargaining agreements – only then can new free spaces be secured in the coordination of work, life and political activity. Every person would thus be enabled to plan his or her own life over a period of one or more years, in its transitions between family, paid employment, leisure and political involvement, and to harmonize this with the claims and demands of others. Only then can the three principles of freedom, security and responsibility be adjusted and reaffirmed.

Until well into the 1970s, Germany's ‘Fordist diamond’ was bound up with the joint productivity of the key automobile, chemicals, foodstuffs, engineering and electrical sectors. Their success rested in turn upon a unique set of historical, cultural and political conditions: the proprietary ‘skilled worker’ and a corresponding culture of training and lifestyle; mass demand in the home market for mass-produced goods; a matching local supply economy; strong trade unions and free collective bargaining that was also highly valued by politicians; a corporate culture geared to partnership between both sides of industry; a guiding political image of ‘working citizens’, which replaced talk of class struggle with moderate negotiating practices and a commitment to democratic institutions. While Germany's postwar economic miracle led to collective advancement that favoured acceptance of the democratic system, both the question of unemployment and the question of democracy are posed differently in the ‘post-national constellation’ in which the German model has been losing the ground beneath its feet.

Such a history would then, in the nature of things, be full of breaks and contradictions; education would be interrupted and resumed, McJobs would often rank equally with starting up in a business of one's own, and everything would be woven together into a quite individual web of activities and employ-ment situations. One thing, however, is common to all these life-constructions: they lie outside the classical employee's biography, outside union agreements and statutory salary scales, outside collective bargaining and home mortgage contracts.32 And they are the basis for a precarious new culture of independence: ‘business men and women in their own affairs’. Scenario 8: individualization of work – disintegration of society Linda's new working life is not without its drawbacks. Chief among them is a constant cloud of anxiety about finding the next job. In some ways Linda feels isolated and vulnerable.


Work in the Future The Automation Revolution-Palgrave MacMillan (2019) by Robert Skidelsky Nan Craig

3D printing, Airbnb, algorithmic trading, Amazon Web Services, anti-work, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, basic income, business cycle, cloud computing, collective bargaining, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, data is the new oil, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, disintermediation, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, feminist movement, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, gig economy, global supply chain, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, Loebner Prize, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, moral panic, Network effects, new economy, off grid, pattern recognition, post-work, Ronald Coase, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Steve Jobs, strong AI, technoutopianism, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, the market place, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, wealth creators, working poor

These have continued up to the present day. As of 2004, sector-level collective bargaining had resulted in a 35-hour week for a fifth of German workers (Hayden 2013: 129). Recently, workers represented by the German railway and transport union Eisenbahn- und Verkehrsgewerkschaft (EVG) have gained the opportunity to choose between wage increases and more holidays. In 2017, 56 per cent of employees at the rail company voted in favour of boosting their holiday allowance by six days. This was, again, only possible because employees were already satisfied with their wages. Germany has much stronger collective bargaining institutions than the UK, where during the 1980s most employer federations were dismantled or ended their involvement in collective bargaining. The UK now has predominantly company-level bargaining: there is still industry-level bargaining in some industries, such as parts of the textile industry and construction, but in most cases, in the private sector, bargaining is at company or plant level.

This is where it becomes useful to ask how and why other industrialised countries have come to work fewer hours than the UK as well as to examine past attempts to reduce working time. Case Studies There are several methods through which shorter working has been achieved in the past: legislation, collective bargaining, company-level initiatives, and individual and voluntary time reduction. I take the Netherlands, Germany and France as case studies, each of which uses different combinations of these approaches and with varying success. Full-time employees in the Netherlands work 39 hours on average, less than the average full-time British worker. This is mainly due to shortening working hours through collective bargaining. More notably, however, an unusually large number of employees work voluntarily part-time (as opposed to involuntarily working part-time when they would rather work more hours): throughout the 1980s and 1990s there was a huge rise in part-time work (De Spiegelaere and Piasna 2017).

Workers in growing numbers, mainly unskilled and service workers, ultimately compensated unemployment spells with very short-­ term jobs. As a result, the category of unemployed workers that still work intermittently in order to accumulate unemployment insurance benefits and wages has considerably grown over the last decade. The way most unions operate in France perpetuates this labour market dualism. France has one of the lowest rates of union membership in the OECD, and yet one of the highest rates of wage and collective bargaining coverage, due to the legal and administrative extension procedure, which results in the application of collective agreements to firms that are not members of one of the signatory employer associations. This impacts the way in which 7 Attitudes to Work 69 unions behave, mainly in a confrontational style. Indeed, we know that better, more cooperative, labour relations positively correlate with union membership rate (Cheuvreux and Darmaillacq 2014).


pages: 550 words: 124,073

Democracy and Prosperity: Reinventing Capitalism Through a Turbulent Century by Torben Iversen, David Soskice

Andrei Shleifer, assortative mating, augmented reality, barriers to entry, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, central bank independence, centre right, cleantech, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, colonial rule, corporate governance, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, deindustrialization, deskilling, Donald Trump, first-past-the-post, full employment, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, implied volatility, income inequality, industrial cluster, inflation targeting, invisible hand, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, liberal capitalism, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, means of production, mittelstand, Network effects, New Economic Geography, new economy, New Urbanism, non-tariff barriers, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, open borders, open economy, passive investing, precariat, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, RFID, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Robert Gordon, Silicon Valley, smart cities, speech recognition, The Future of Employment, The Great Moderation, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, too big to fail, trade liberalization, union organizing, urban decay, Washington Consensus, winner-take-all economy, working-age population, World Values Survey, young professional, zero-sum game

The Determinants of Populist Voting in Six Countries with Significant Populist Parties 256 Figures 1.1 Measures of Distribution of Income, 2010 vs. 1985 24 1.2 Number of Patents per One Million People in the Working Age Population 27 1.3 The Distribution of Income in Advanced Democracies Compared to Nonadvanced Countries 36 2.1 Protocorporatist States and Industrial Relations Structuring 70 3.1 Average Union Density Rates and Wage Coordination in 18 Advanced Democracies 106 3.2 Average Density and Collective Bargaining Coordination in Four Advanced Democracies 107 3.3 The Vote Shares of Social Democratic and Center Parties 116 3.4 Male Wage Inequality 118 3.5 Average Industrial Employment as a Share of Total Civilian Employment in 18 Advanced Democracies 119 3.6 Central Bank Independence in 18 OECD Countries 122 3.7 The Responsiveness of Governments to Adverse Shocks in Different Political Systems 126 3.8 Voter Support for Populist Parties 130 4.1 Percent with Tertiary Degrees, by Age Group 147 4.2 Capital Market Openness and the Stock of FDI in Advanced Democracies 148 4.3 Financialization of Advanced Economies 150 4.4 Inflation Rates before and after Adoption of Inflation Targeting 153 4.5 The Strengthening of Product Market Competition Policies in ACDs 154 4.6 Number and Depth of Trade Agreements 155 4.7 A Strategic Complementarities Game of Reforms 162 4.8 Support for Government Intervention in Economy, by Policy Area 166 4.9 Summary of Causal Linkages in Big-City Agglomerations 200 5.1 The Great Gatsby Curve 221 5.2 The Link between the Transition to the Knowledge Economy and Populism 227 5.3 The Difference in Populist Values between the Old and New Middle Class 240 5.4 Educational Opportunity and Populist Values 242 5.5 The Rise of Populist Voting 245 5.6 The Difference in Populist Vote between the Old and New Middle Class 247 6.1 The Symbiotic Relationship 259 PREFACE This book started from our discussions of a paradox.

Hence there was an underlying incentive for nascent businesses to use skilled labor and aim at relatively upmarket strategies. The fact of relatively skill-intensive workforces then meant that workforce cooperation, moderation of real wages, and ultimately the training process itself became important issues for business, issues which were difficult to solve without union cooperation. Thus agreements with unions which traded cooperative workforces for collective bargaining rights were attractive to both sides. But, to be credible bargaining partners to business in the supply of cooperation, unions needed to have the power to control their local affiliates within factories: hence unions needed centralized power outside the company. This was not straightforward, however, because unions, even when understanding the need for centralization, were often prevented by their locals from imposing it.

Absent that control, as we have said, organized employers had to force centralization of unions through lockouts (Swenson 1991; 2002). Thus agreements with powerful central unions were necessary to secure the cooperation of skilled workers, and this was noticeable in the early years of the twentieth century. These agreements covered explicitly or implicitly the right of managers to organize production and the implied workforce cooperation, collective bargaining, and issues related to training and tenure; in essence, these agreements enabled industry to invest in cospecific assets with their workforces. So the period before the full incorporation of labor into the political system was advantageous to (especially big) industry: on the one hand, industry could structure agreements with unions which were underwritten implicitly by the political regime, at least for industry; on the other, the politically unified working class was kept out of effective political power and thus the possibility of advancing redistribution and social protection on its own terms.


pages: 205 words: 58,054

Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (And Why We Don't Talk About It) by Elizabeth S. Anderson

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, call centre, collective bargaining, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, declining real wages, deskilling, feminist movement, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, invisible hand, manufacturing employment, means of production, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, principal–agent problem, profit motive, Ronald Coase, shareholder value, Socratic dialogue, spinning jenny, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trickle-down economics

As Anderson observes, “Efficient employment contracts are … necessarily incomplete,” managers must have discretion to coordinate workers’ activities. But these theories do not explain the breadth of employers’ authority over workers’ lives. “Under the employment-at-will baseline, workers, in effect, cede all of their rights to their employers, except those specifically guaranteed to them by law, for the duration of the employment relationship.” The result is that “Employers’ authority over workers, outside of collective bargaining and a few other contexts … is sweeping, arbitrary, and unaccountable—not subject to notice, process, or appeal.” Workplace governance “is a form of private government,” underwritten by law. Of course, if workers object to the conditions of their employment, they can quit. But the costs of exit for many workers are extremely high. To deny employers’ authority over workers because of freedom of exit, says Anderson, “is like saying that Mussolini wasn’t a dictator, because Italians could emigrate.”

Nevertheless, the fact remains that “the constitution of workplace government is both arbitrary and dictatorial,” and that it “is not dictated by efficiency or freedom of contract, but rather by the state.” Anderson closes by suggesting a variety of ways to increase worker protections against arbitrary treatment: these include enhanced exit rights, a workers’ bill of rights, and greater “voice,” including via improved legal support for unions and collective bargaining. Most importantly, our public discourse should recognize the reality of workers’ subjection to arbitrary private government in the workplace and explore ways of remedying it. The first of our four commentators, Ann Hughes, a leading historian of early modern England and the English Civil War, and Professor of Early Modern History at Keele University in the UK, applauds as “exemplary” Anderson’s “deployment of historical material as a storehouse of imagination, and a legacy to the present.”

He acknowledges that firms are “islands of conscious power.”16 The employment contract is one in which the worker “agrees to obey the directions of an entrepreneur.” But, he insists, “the essence of the contract is that it should only state the limits to the powers of the entrepreneur.”17 This suggests that the limits of the employer’s powers are an object of negotiation or at least communication between the parties. In the vast majority of cases, outside the contexts of collective bargaining or for higher-level employees, this is not true. Most workers are hired without any negotiation over the content of the employer’s authority, and without a written or oral contract specifying any limits to it. If they receive an employee handbook indicating such limits, the inclusion of a simple disclaimer (which is standard practice) is sufficient to nullify any implied contract exception to at-will employment in most states.18 No wonder they are shocked and outraged when their boss fires them for being too attractive,19 for failing to show up at a political rally in support of the boss’s favored political candidate,20 even because their daughter was raped by a friend of the boss.21 What, then, determines the scope and limits of the employer’s authority, if it is not a meeting of minds of the parties?


pages: 196 words: 55,862

Riding for Deliveroo: Resistance in the New Economy by Callum Cant

Airbnb, call centre, collective bargaining, deskilling, Elon Musk, future of work, gig economy, housing crisis, illegal immigration, information asymmetry, invention of the steam engine, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, new economy, Pearl River Delta, race to the bottom, ride hailing / ride sharing, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, union organizing, Winter of Discontent, women in the workforce

Every building project started with one big site-wide negotiation led by the trade unions, which determined the wages and conditions on that project. Often sites were run as a ‘closed shop’. This meant that the workers would only allow other unionized workers on the site. But workers on the lump didn’t take part in collective bargaining led by the trade unions, and instead made individual deals with the employer. The lump decisively broke the closed-shop model and introduced two parallel processes: the individual negotiations of ‘self-employed’ workers on the lump, and the collective bargaining of directly employed workers via the trade unions. On some sites, employers even began to refuse to hire any direct employees at all. The workforce in the industry was decisively split. Cumulatively, the breakdown of bargaining also led to the erosion of health and safety standards on building sites.

They can tell what is coming next. Dan clears his throat. The workers close the circle around him and start to shout and laugh. Those standing at the top of the steps loom over him. He gestures for the workers to be quiet. He starts to speak: ‘Can I have some silence, ladies and gents …’ The company, he says, is willing to listen to every worker’s concerns, individually. The response is not positive. The workers want collective bargaining, and they tell him as much, at full volume. One worker steps forward: ‘Everyone wants the same thing: £8 per hour, plus £1 per drop. That’s it.’ Dan responds, ‘Listen guys, there needs to be an explanation around what the changes are, it’s a change in payment method, not lower wages …’ The workers cut him off. They tell him that’s not what they want. He tries again, ‘That is a dialogue we will have individually.

They settled for a compromise position of the status quo, with the existing workers keeping a £7 per hour plus £1 per drop payment structure. It was only a partial victory. All new workers would be put on the new per-drop-only payment structure. Despite a large proportion of the strikers joining the IWGB and demanding it lead negotiations, Deliveroo continued to refuse to participate in formal collective bargaining or to allow trade union representation. Deliveroo continued to maintain the legal fiction that its couriers were ‘independent contractors’. But that strike was the beginning of something. Deliveroo workers had shown they could take on their bosses – and, from London, the fight would spread, across the UK, Europe, and, finally, the world. 1 Introduction Deliveroo is a food-delivery platform.


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How Will Capitalism End? by Wolfgang Streeck

accounting loophole / creative accounting, Airbnb, basic income, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, centre right, Clayton Christensen, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Brooks, David Graeber, debt deflation, deglobalization, deindustrialization, disruptive innovation, en.wikipedia.org, eurozone crisis, failed state, financial deregulation, financial innovation, first-past-the-post, fixed income, full employment, Gini coefficient, global reserve currency, Google Glasses, haute cuisine, income inequality, information asymmetry, invisible hand, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Kenneth Rogoff, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, late capitalism, liberal capitalism, market bubble, means of production, moral hazard, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, open borders, pension reform, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, post-industrial society, private sector deleveraging, profit maximization, profit motive, quantitative easing, reserve currency, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, savings glut, secular stagnation, shareholder value, sharing economy, sovereign wealth fund, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, transaction costs, Uber for X, upwardly mobile, Vilfredo Pareto, winner-take-all economy, Wolfgang Streeck

The structure of the post-war settlement between labour and capital was fundamentally the same across the otherwise widely different countries where democratic capitalism had come to be instituted. It included an expanding welfare state, the right of workers to free collective bargaining and a political guarantee of full employment, underwritten by governments making extensive use of the Keynesian economic toolkit. When growth began to falter in the late 1960s, however, this combination became difficult to maintain. While free collective bargaining enabled workers through their unions to act on what had become firmly ingrained expectations of regular yearly wage increases, governments’ commitment to full employment, together with a growing welfare state, protected unions from potential employment losses caused by wage settlements in excess of productivity growth.

In subsequent years governments all over the Western world faced the question of how to make trade unions moderate their members’ wage demands without having to rescind the Keynesian promise of full employment. In countries where the institutional structure of the collective-bargaining system was not conducive to the negotiation of tripartite ‘social pacts’, most governments remained convinced throughout the 1970s that allowing unemployment to rise in order to contain real wage increases was too risky for their own survival, if not for the stability of capitalist democracy as such. Their only way out was an accommodating monetary policy which, while allowing free collective bargaining and full employment to continue to coexist, did so at the expense of raising the rate of inflation to levels that accelerated over time. In its early stages, inflation was not much of a problem for workers represented by strong trade unions and politically powerful enough to achieve de facto wage indexation.

The upward shift of conflict arenas during the decades of neoliberal progress was accompanied by a gradual erosion of the post-war standard model of democracy, pushed forward by, as well as allowing for, the gradual emergence of a new, ‘Hayekian’ growth model for OECD capitalism. By the standard model of democracy, I mean the peculiar combination, as had come to be considered normal in OECD capitalism after 1945, of reasonably free elections, government by established mass parties, ideally one of the Right and one of the Left, and strong trade unions and employer associations under a firmly institutionalized collective bargaining regime, with legal rights to strike and, sometimes, lock-out. This model reached its peak in the 1970s, after which it began to disintegrate28. The advance of neoliberalism coincided with steadily declining electoral turnout in all countries, rare and short-lived exceptions notwithstanding. The shrinking of the electorate was, moreover, highly asymmetrical: those that dropped out of electoral politics came overwhelmingly from the lower end of the income scale – ironically where the need for egalitarian democracy is greatest.


Crisis and Leviathan: Critical Episodes in the Growth of American Government by Robert Higgs, Arthur A. Ekirch, Jr.

Alistair Cooke, American ideology, business cycle, clean water, collective bargaining, creative destruction, credit crunch, declining real wages, endowment effect, fiat currency, fixed income, full employment, hiring and firing, income per capita, Jones Act, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, manufacturing employment, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, plutocrats, Plutocrats, post-industrial society, price discrimination, profit motive, rent control, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Sam Peltzman, Simon Kuznets, strikebreaker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, War on Poverty, Works Progress Administration

As the old, informally paternalistic relationships declined and a more dynamic, impersonal labor market lurched unpredictably from year to year, misunderstandings and mutual hostility became progressively more common. 41 Labor unions, with their organizational tactics, attempts at collective bargaining, and episodic strikes, galled employers mightily. Many bossesand others, including many workers-questioned the legitimacy of unions as representatives of individual workers. Employers resented the challenge to their prerogatives to manage their own private property and contractual affairs. By the second half of the nineteenth century the courts were generally holding that the mere existence and collective-bargaining activities of unions did not violate the law, but important legal questions remained unsettled, especially those pertaining to the permissible bounds of strikes, picketing, and boycotts.

Stimson, disgusted by the "national refusal to fight an all-out war," observed that "Both labour and management preferred the anarchy of a voluntary system to the imagined perils of Government direction."56 In truth the opponents had more self-serving concerns. Unionists, who ranted about "slave labor" and "involuntary servitude," did not oppose military conscription-surely a more reprehensible form of involuntary servitude than assignment to a safe, well-paid civilian job. Union leaders knew that national service would put an end to genuine collective bargaining and render them personally superfluous. Philip Murray warned the CIO executive board: destroy collective bargaining "and see how effective you will be with your people back home. You will find out how quick they will tell you to go to hell." Businessmen, of course, wanted to retain control over hiring and firing. They also perceived that drafting civilian labor would lead directly to demands for "conscription of profits"-that is, confiscatory taxation-and governmental takeovers of their production facilities. 57 Stimson and those in his camp had little regard for individual liberty in wartime, but they had at least the virtue of moral (immoral?)

Sometimes workers could be intimidated into staying on the job-once the President threatened to blacklist striking machinists to deny them war-related work and promised that "the draft boards will be instructed to reject any claim of exemption based on your alleged usefulness on war production"-but usually the government correctly perceived that such heavy-handedness would only prove counterproductive. 61 The prevailing policy was the more conciliatory one of supporting union organization and compulsory collective bargaining, the eight-hour day, and union work rules. Employers could be indemnified by cost-plus contracts with governmental procurement agencies. To help resolve some of the larger and more threatening labor-management disputes, Wilson in September 191 7 created the President's Mediation Commission, whose secretary and legal counsel was Felix Frankfurter, a Harvard law professor destined to exert a great influence on public affairs for a long time to come. 62 As the government's involvement in labor relations expanded, it grew more and more confused, finally prompting a reorganization in January 1918 that featured the creation by executive order of a War Labor Administration to be headed by the Secretary of Labor, William B.


pages: 324 words: 86,056

The Socialist Manifesto: The Case for Radical Politics in an Era of Extreme Inequality by Bhaskar Sunkara

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Bernie Sanders, British Empire, business climate, business cycle, capital controls, centre right, Charles Lindbergh, collective bargaining, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, Donald Trump, equal pay for equal work, feminist movement, Ferguson, Missouri, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, gig economy, Gunnar Myrdal, happiness index / gross national happiness, Honoré de Balzac, income inequality, inventory management, labor-force participation, land reform, land value tax, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, Neil Kinnock, new economy, Occupy movement, postindustrial economy, precariat, race to the bottom, Ralph Waldo Emerson, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, urban renewal, We are the 99%

The changes were not necessarily anticapitalist: business needed labor and state support to adjust to a changing world market. But though capitalists could accept active industrial policy, the push to expand workplace democracy was bitterly resisted.19 LO leaders had to contend with a wave of wildcat strikes and were pushed to the left as a result in the early 1970s. The federation began advocating the extension of collective bargaining to noneconomic concerns. The employers organized in the SAF refused any such reform, so labor (both the LO and the white-collar federations) resorted to pushing its demands through social-democratic legislation. With the backing of Palme’s Social Democratic Party, employers were forced to negotiate with unions on just about every workplace issue. The terms of the 1938 Basic Agreement were violated, with labor firing the first shots.

Though suffering from the inefficiencies common in command economies, the country’s famous propaganda poster is not far from the truth when it reads, “200 million children in the world today sleep in the streets—none are Cuban.” Cuba’s international accomplishments are also worthy of mention. Cuban doctors have served millions abroad, and the country played a pivotal role defeating South African apartheid (though its record intervening in the Horn of Africa is less laudable). At the same time, Cuba falls short of any standard of “socialist democracy.” Cuba’s workers don’t have even basic rights to collectively bargain or protest government policies. The 1959 Revolution served to create a new elite, though unlike the country’s old elite, its legitimacy is grounded not in wealth and its relations with Washington but in its offering of free education and quality medical care and other necessities to the people. It has accomplished, in short, more than capitalism has in most of Latin America. But without the freedom to organize to defend what’s good in their system and overturn what is corrupt, Cuba’s future seems to be in the hands of a new generation of state bureaucrats and remerging business interests.

Democrats also saw their control over state legislatures slip dramatically, from 59 percent at the beginning of Obama’s presidency to 31 percent at its end.8 Rollbacks began in earnest in many Republican-dominated states. The most significant flashpoint was Governor Scott Walker’s attempt to annihilate a century of labor victories in Wisconsin, all in one fell swoop. In 2011, Walker introduced the Budget Repair Bill, which would have hobbled unions by outlawing collective bargaining for public sector workers. It proposed cutting into vital social programs, including Medicare, environmental protections, even public education. The measures provoked resistance—more than a hundred thousand people marched on the state capital, teachers across the state organized “sick outs” to get around rules banning strikes, and protesters occupied the Wisconsin capitol building for two and a half weeks, demanding that Walker step down.


pages: 255 words: 75,172

Sleeping Giant: How the New Working Class Will Transform America by Tamara Draut

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, always be closing, American ideology, battle of ideas, big-box store, blue-collar work, collective bargaining, creative destruction, David Brooks, declining real wages, deindustrialization, desegregation, Detroit bankruptcy, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, ending welfare as we know it, Ferguson, Missouri, financial deregulation, full employment, immigration reform, income inequality, invisible hand, job satisfaction, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, low skilled workers, mass incarceration, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, obamacare, occupational segregation, payday loans, pink-collar, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Powell Memorandum, profit motive, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, shared worldview, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trickle-down economics, union organizing, upwardly mobile, War on Poverty, white flight, women in the workforce, young professional

Back when President Franklin Roosevelt signed into law some of the nation’s first labor protections regarding wages and hours, the laws were written to ensure that the majority of jobs worked by African Americans would be exempt—indeed, it was the only way to get the bill passed by a Congress controlled by segregationist southern Democrats.24 While not explicitly carving out an exception for African American workers, the National Labor Relations Act of 1935, which established the right of workers to collective bargaining, and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which established the right to a minimum wage and overtime pay, both specifically exempted agricultural and domestic workers from these rights. Even though caregiving work in the home has become an official part of our economy—and a pretty big one at that, with 2.5 million jobs and fast growth—services provided in the home for pay were essentially not considered “real work” under existing labor law or standards until very recently.

The political calculus and ideology displayed by the administration reflected decades of shifting allegiances and power in the country, including the formerly proud “party of labor.” In fact, you, reader, may even be thinking to yourself that unions are some kind of industrial-age relic with no relevance in today’s economy—that they’re dying because they make no sense in today’s tech-rich, global-scale economy. So let’s take a quick look back and remind ourselves of what unions have done for American society. The power of unions transcends the collective bargaining done on behalf of their workers. The real power is that through union dues, the labor movement can amass significant resources to engage in voter turnout, agenda setting, and issue advocacy, all on behalf of ordinary Americans. It’s that amassing of political power that is so threatening to conservatives and corporate America. After all, big labor has been responsible for advances in our day-to-day lives that still make conservatives livid: Medicare, Medicaid, and, yes, Obamacare too; unemployment insurance; Social Security; the forty-hour workweek; pensions (what’s left of them, anyway), and the minimum wage.

According to Joe, McKesson used to tout that the company had never had one of its facilities vote in a union that started out as McKesson, but that changed in October 2011, when local Teamsters 78 unionized the distribution center in Tampa, Florida. But McKesson isn’t rolling over easily on this one. A tape-recorded session of one of the captive-audience meetings is available online.45 In one of the forty-five-minute sessions, the director of labor relations for McKesson gives a presentation on “how collective bargaining works.” He tells the employees that “if the union gets voted in, everything that you have goes on the table and we negotiate it. So the current wages you have goes on the table, your benefits, your UPTOs [universal paid time off], and all your working conditions go on the table. And through the process of give-and-take, we bargain a contract. Now we give and take. So if I give something, I take something.


pages: 289

Hustle and Gig: Struggling and Surviving in the Sharing Economy by Alexandrea J. Ravenelle

"side hustle", active transport: walking or cycling, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, barriers to entry, basic income, Broken windows theory, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cashless society, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collaborative consumption, collective bargaining, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, disruptive innovation, Downton Abbey, East Village, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, future of work, gig economy, Howard Zinn, income inequality, informal economy, job automation, low skilled workers, Lyft, minimum wage unemployment, Mitch Kapor, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, obamacare, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, passive income, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer model, performance metric, precariat, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, the payments system, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, ubercab, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, urban planning, very high income, white flight, working poor, Zipcar

Even before the American Revolution, there were small strikes among New York City cartmen, in 1677, and bakers, in 1741.4 Yet, while the United States was still in its infancy as a colony of Great Britain, labor unrest remained short-lived and isolated. Seeking the “pursuit of happiness” through higher pay and shorter hours, New York printers went on strike in 1794, cabinet makers in 1796, Philadelphia carpenters in 1797, and shoemakers in 1799.5 In the early 1800s, when workers tried to use collective bargaining power to obtain increased wages, decreased hours, or just generally improved conditions, they faced the threat of indictment and prosecution for criminal conspiracy. Although the United States did not have specific laws against worker organizing, early American courts followed British common law: when two or more workers plotted the harm of a third, or of the public, they could be indicted on a charge of criminal conspiracy.

In the first half of the nineteenth century, workers in at least twenty-three cases were indicted and generally convicted for criminal conspiracy in Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.7 Most were found guilty but were given relatively small fines as a “testimonial to the temper of the people,” even as the guilty findings demonstrated an intention to “drive unionism out of American life.”8 However, workers continued to organize, and by 1810—less than twenty years after the first trade union was established in America—some unions had already established collective bargaining; minimum wage demands; a “closed,” or union, shop; unity between skilled and unskilled workers; and solidarity between different unions.9 The economic depression of 1819–1822 destroyed those unions that had managed to survive strikes and conspiracy charges, but the mid- to late 1820s heralded a resurgence of worker organizing. In 1825, Boston carpenters struck for a ten-hour workday, only to be told that the shortened workday was bad for workers, would “exert a very unhappy influence,” and expose workers to “many improvident temptations and improvident practices.”10 By 1829, New York City workers had secured recognition of the ten-hour workday, although employers continued to attempt to reinstate an eleven-hour day.

Nationwide, by the end of 1932, there were 330 self-help organizations in thirty-seven states, with more than three hundred thousand members, although as the economy deteriorated further those organizations, too, collapsed.22 In 1934, 1.5 million workers went on strike, including longshoremen on the West Coast, 325,000 southern textile workers, and 2,500 Lowell mill workers. In 1935, the Wagner Act was passed, which established a National Labor Relations Board and gave employees the right to form and join unions and engage in collective bargaining and strikes. Then, in 1938, President Roosevelt signed into law the Fair Labor Standards Act, which banned oppressive child labor, set the minimum hourly wage at twenty-five cents and the maximum workweek at forty-four hours (later shortened to forty hours under the Fair Labor Standards Amendments of 1966).23 The Wagner Act was challenged by steel corporations, but the Supreme Court found it to be constitutional on the basis of the federal government’s right to regulate interstate commerce, which was hurt by strikes.


pages: 350 words: 109,521

Our 50-State Border Crisis: How the Mexican Border Fuels the Drug Epidemic Across America by Howard G. Buffett

airport security, clean water, collective bargaining, defense in depth, Donald Trump, illegal immigration, immigration reform, linked data, low skilled workers, moral panic

2 Border security goals are compromised when collective bargaining agreements dictate the conditions under which officers can be transferred, promoted, and, to a certain degree, deployed. Under collective bargaining agreements, agents can file appeals to transfer, and other rules can prevent a strategically important operating facility from being staffed—as has happened for more than six years near our Mission Oaks Ranch in Arizona. Would we give an undercover CIA operative the option to accept or decline the next phase of a mission based on whether he felt he’d been given adequate warning of a change? Should an FBI leader who needs agents to “follow the money” to a different state in a laundering investigation have to delay deployment to make sure the order aligns with collective bargaining rules? I don’t think so.

However, the armed agents patrolling our borders should belong to a category of “excepted service” similar to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and the U.S. Secret Service. These and another three dozen or so agencies are excepted from the U.S. government’s “competitive service” process. They have their own hiring and evaluation systems and security clearance processes, and several are legally prohibited from collective bargaining agreements. Today, collective bargaining agreements limit our ability to respond to the shifting tactics and surges of drug smugglers and other criminals infiltrating our border. Technically, CBP is America’s largest law enforcement agency, but we have to embrace the fundamental basis of the mission: Patrolling our borders effectively today, when drug and human smugglers may be armed with automatic weapons and sophisticated communication networks, demands a combination of law enforcement, intelligence gathering, and foreign adversary engagement skills and tactics beyond basic law enforcement.

And the job of responding to that criticism and representing agents charged with a difficult mission over vast amounts of territory has been taken up by a very aggressive union, the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), which has represented Border Patrol agents since 1967. Because of what I see as a conflict between BP’s unusual dual law enforcement and national security mission, I think collective bargaining agreements are an obstacle to Border Patrol being more effective. “How do you deploy personnel in an emergency when the union rep is looking over your shoulder?” asks one law enforcement veteran in Arizona. The first issue involves flexibility. Former chiefs and supervisors have told me that union rules put strict requirements on the transferring and deployment of agents, such as how much notice they must be given before a transfer takes place, compensation for travel, specified rotation schedules off the actual border, and other tactical changes.


pages: 173 words: 54,729

Occupying Wall Street: The Inside Story of an Action That Changed America by Writers For The 99%

Bay Area Rapid Transit, citizen journalism, collective bargaining, desegregation, feminist movement, income inequality, McMansion, Mohammed Bouazizi, Occupy movement, Port of Oakland, We are the 99%, young professional

Indeed, OWS and the burgeoning student movement it fostered provided a lucrative opportunity for the labor movement to stage a broader-based counter-attack against owners’ increasingly hard-line tactics at the bargaining table, as well as the renewed threats against collective bargaining in statehouses nationwide. Maida Rosenstein, president of United Auto Workers Local 2110, said, “We in the UAW had been talking about how do we mobilize people and our members not just electronically? How do we mobilize people to get out and protest and rally and demonstrate?” The protests against Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s attacks on collective bargaining rights in February of 2011, in which students and union workers occupied the State Capitol in Madison before erecting a tent city, served as an important precedent. While they failed to prevent Walker’s unionbusting law from passing, those protests served to radicalize the labor movement nationwide, and made union leaders quick to recognize the potential benefits of aligning with Occupy Wall Street.

These committees and specially designated spaces would serve as a template for later movements in Europe and the United States. Three days later, on February 14, the first wave of popular unrest in the U.S. shook the Wisconsin State Capitol in Madison and quickly reached nearby college campuses and the cities of Milwaukee, Green Bay, and Columbus, Ohio. The revolt had a specific target—the Wisconsin Budget Repair Bill, which also limited collective bargaining rights–but some protesters brandished Egyptian flags. On February 20, Egyptian union leader Kamal Abbas posted a YouTube video encouraging the “workers in Wisconsin.” “We stand with you as you stood with us,” he said. By summer, the uprisings had spread to Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, Asia, and Europe. All of these protests influenced the people who were to participate in OWS. Senia, from OWS’s Press Working Group, noted, for example, that Latina/o occupiers got “a really big inspiration” from less-publicized but recent protests in Chile, Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela.

Before Occupy Wall Street, alliances between students at public and private colleges and universities across the city benefited from the unionization of student workers and more general union support. Many student activists in New York Students Rising were members of Communication Workers of America (CWA) graduate employee locals. They had been active in the March 4 Day of Action earlier that year against tuition hikes, departmental cuts and other attacks on Higher Education that a growing number of students understood to be connected to the nationwide attacks on collective bargaining and the U.S. working class. NYU students have also been involved in local union fights, lending support to adjunct faculty contract negotiations (the adjunct faculty at NYU and the New School are both represented by UAW Local 7902), the Teamsters art-handlers who are currently locked out of Sotheby’s and Stella D’Oro workers. NYU graduate student workers themselves are still in the midst of a recognition campaign for their union, GSOC-UAW Local 2110.


pages: 229 words: 61,482

The Gig Economy: The Complete Guide to Getting Better Work, Taking More Time Off, and Financing the Life You Want by Diane Mulcahy

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, basic income, Clayton Christensen, cognitive bias, collective bargaining, creative destruction, David Brooks, deliberate practice, diversification, diversified portfolio, fear of failure, financial independence, future of work, gig economy, helicopter parent, Home mortgage interest deduction, housing crisis, job satisfaction, Kickstarter, loss aversion, low skilled workers, Lyft, mass immigration, mental accounting, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage tax deduction, negative equity, passive income, Paul Graham, remote working, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, TaskRabbit, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, wage slave, Y Combinator, Zipcar

Anything above the state-provided “safety net” must be paid for by individuals themselves or by employers who provide them voluntarily. He calls his proposal “libertarianism with a safety net.”15 Allow Contractors to Collectively Bargain The National Labor Relations Act applies only to employees, thus excluding independent contractors from the ability to bargain collectively. In the past, contractor attempts to unionize and bargain have been thwarted by invoking antitrust laws. The argument is that contractors who collectively bargain to set common rates are essentially colluding, which violates antitrust laws. However, in December 2015, the Seattle City Council voted to extend collective bargaining rights to Uber and Lyft drivers.16 In March, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce sued the city of Seattle, saying that the ordinance violates antitrust laws.17 California is expected to introduce a similar bill covering independent contractors who work on on-demand platforms.

Manager schedules car payments cash flow, negative categorizing workers, eliminating Center for a New American Dream survey certifications Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board checkbook diagnostic exercise Christakis, Nicholas Christensen, Clayton Clark, Dorie Reinventing You Stand Out cognitive biases cognitive resources collective bargaining, by contractors college graduates, unemployment and underemployment comfort zone Comment step in speaking in writing commitment dropping or reducing exit strategy from connecting without networking inbound connecting offer and ask outbound connecting consulting pricing strategy Consumer Federation of America contractors autonomy of collective bargaining by eliminating category vs. employees pricing strategy savings plans contracts corporate ladder corporate time suck costs of full-time employees of home ownership Create step in speaking in writing credentials-based economy, vs. skill-based Curate step in speaking in writing curated groups daily work schedule Dash exercise debt from education perspectives on decisions, either/or vs. and deferred life plan delegating denial, job security and Department of Labor (DoL) dependent contractor Dickson, Peter digital nomads directors and officers (D&O) insurance disability insurance disability issues, leaving work involuntarily diversifying expertise and portfolio of gigs risk of excess Doodle “double opt-in,” for introductions downsizing dream job Eagleman, David earned income education accessing debt from elevator pitch Ellis, Linda, “The Dash” Employee Mindset employee-in-a-job model employees advantages of being vs. contractors corporate benefits impact of Gig Economy learned helplessness about time prorated and portable benefits tax rate employers contribution retirement plans student loan repayment benefits tax compliance rate end dates, negotiating Entrepreneur Magazine equity in home ownership Ernst & Young eulogy virtues Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation exercises calendar diagnostic checkbook diagnostic on priorities exit strategy creation facing fears and reducing risks finding gigs personal burn rate surrogation and success taking year off vision of success defined vision of success refined exit strategy creating for leaving job for reducing uncertainty for startup Expensify experimenting, gigs for expertise, diversification and failure, expecting and preparing for fear exercise for facing facing fee-only financial planner financial flexibility corporate perks in increasing with more income from low personal burn rate planning from savings and time off financial team, for independent workers finding gigs exercises Fitbit fixed costs income security from low flexibility debt and ownership impact see also financial flexibility Forbes 401(k) Fowler, James Fox, Jessica, Three Things You Need to Know About Rockets Framingham Heart Study, social connections Freelancer Freelancers Union FreshBooks full-time employees job disappearance as last resort fundraising Gabriel, Allison Gaignard, Jayson, Mastermind Dinners Gallup poll Generation X Gig Economy finding gigs of future good work vs. good job growth labor issues MBA course newness of pitch for outbound connect retirement to mix work and leisure rules for success size of Gilbert, Daniel giving time away Gladwell, Malcolm, Outliers Glassdoor, Employee Confidence Survey goal creep “good jobs,” future of The Good Jobs Strategy (Ton) government positions, layoffs Graham, Paul Granovetter, Mark Great Generation (65 and older) Groupon Gupta, Prerna Hanauer, Nick Handy, Charles happiness Harford, Tim Harvard Business Review Harvard Joint Center on Housing Studies Harvard Study of Adult Development health insurance health issues, leaving work involuntarily healthcare costs in retirement help from others Hill, Steven Raw Deal hindsight, power of home ownership vs. access to home impact on middle class myths of real costs Honest Dollar hosting, inbound connecting through Huffington, Arianna hyperbolic discounting “in-between space,” time off to create income security from low fixed costs from multiple income sources from opportunities pipeline from skills building supplemental income in retirement independent workers eligibility for retirement savings financial management savings plans self-insure for unemployment Individual 401(k) inflation information gathering interest, tax deduction for Internal Revenue Service on employee vs. contractor income tax forms, Schedule C interruptions, schedule free of introductions, asking for Intuit investment interval IRA job hunting job interview, time off explanation in job security jobbatical.com jobs, transition to work JP Morgan Chase Kasser, Tim, The High Price of Materialism Katz, Larry Kickstarter Kitces, Michael Kreider, Tim Krueger, Alan Krueger, Norris, Jr.


pages: 221 words: 55,901

The Globalization of Inequality by François Bourguignon

Berlin Wall, Branko Milanovic, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, collective bargaining, Credit Default Swap, deglobalization, deindustrialization, Doha Development Round, Edward Glaeser, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, financial intermediation, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, income inequality, income per capita, labor-force participation, liberal capitalism, minimum wage unemployment, offshore financial centre, open economy, Pareto efficiency, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Robert Gordon, Simon Kuznets, structural adjustment programs, The Spirit Level, too big to fail, very high income, Washington Consensus

It is not clear that the countries that went in the direction of the first option by deregulating their labor markets necessarily ended up with increased inequality as a result. Other labor market institutions have a more direct impact on inequality. The first of these I will examine will be collective bargaining for wages and the role of unions. Nearly all developed economies, with the exception of those in Belgium and some Scandinavian countries, have seen a conspicuous drop in the power of unions and a commensurate decrease in the role of collective bargaining. There are several explanations for this evolution. There was, of course, the fact that certain governments, like those of Reagan and Thatcher, were hostile to union activity— which, as we remember, was played out rather spectacularly with regard to air traffic controllers in one case and miners in the other.

And, finally, disinflation radically reduced the utility of collective bargaining in determining salary levels. In a high-­inflation world, workers and employers find it dif­ficult to negotiate on an individual basis, without explicit reference to the way other workers’ salaries are adjusted for inflation, which creates a clear opportunity for the unions to coordinate wage negotiations. In a low-­inflation world, on the contrary, personal characteristics and performances are easier to take into account in individual wage negotiations. Government-­mandated minimum wage laws are another tool for counteracting labor market forces and limiting income inequality, or at the very least wage inequality. Most developed countries have such laws, even if some of them allow collective bargaining to determine the minimum wage for specific sectors of the economy.

The Anglo-­Saxon countries are not among the reformers, but regulation in these countries is already far less restrictive than elsewhere. France is one of the rare countries in which, according to the OECD, the employment 100 Chapter 3 protection laws have become stronger over this period, albeit only slightly. There are various other ways besides these employment protection laws that the labor market is regulated, including through the role of unions and collective bargaining, social contributions, or wage deductions, and payroll charges imposed on employees and employers, unemployment compensation and, of course, minimum wage laws. It turns out that in a large number of developed countries, one or more of these methods for regulating the labor market have been significantly reformed over the last twenty or thirty years. Economists have studied these reforms closely, hoping to understand their effects and to ascertain whether these effects were what policymakers had anticipated, specifically with respect to questions of inequality and employment.


pages: 263 words: 80,594

Stolen: How to Save the World From Financialisation by Grace Blakeley

"Robert Solow", activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, asset-backed security, balance sheet recession, bank run, banking crisis, banks create money, Basel III, basic income, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, bitcoin, Bretton Woods, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate raider, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, cryptocurrency, currency peg, David Graeber, debt deflation, decarbonisation, Donald Trump, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, financial intermediation, fixed income, full employment, G4S, gender pay gap, gig economy, Gini coefficient, global reserve currency, global supply chain, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, inflation targeting, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, land value tax, light touch regulation, low skilled workers, market clearing, means of production, money market fund, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, mortgage debt, negative equity, neoliberal agenda, new economy, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, paradox of thrift, payday loans, pensions crisis, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, principal–agent problem, profit motive, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, regulatory arbitrage, reserve currency, Right to Buy, rising living standards, risk-adjusted returns, road to serfdom, savings glut, secular stagnation, shareholder value, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, sovereign wealth fund, the built environment, The Great Moderation, too big to fail, transfer pricing, universal basic income, Winter of Discontent, working-age population, yield curve, zero-sum game

The destruction of the war, the increasing size of the state, and the arrival of Bretton Woods led to something of a rebalancing in the power of labour relative to capital within the states of the global North.9 The rising political power of domestic labour movements led to the widespread take up of Keynes’ ideas, which were, after all, aimed at preventing recessions and unemployment. States and unions often developed close relationships with one another via emerging mass parties representing labour, and many had a centralised collective bargaining process. Taxes on the wealthy and on corporations were high — underpinned by low levels of capital mobility — and societies became much more equal. During this time, many Keynesians believed that they had finally succeeded in taming the excesses of a capitalist system that had caused so much destruction in the preceding decades, which is why this period was termed the golden age of capitalism, following the gilded age of the pre-war years.

Pursuing a more conciliatory approach, Harold Wilson raised the miners’ wages and attempted to implement a “social contract” between capital and labour, involving a voluntary incomes policy in which the government negotiated pay increases with the unions. But the second oil price spike — which came three years after the UK had sought an emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund — was the nail in the coffin of the social contract. In 1979, with inflation spiralling once again, the unions pushed for a return to free collective bargaining. 1979 was the coldest winter since 1962, and the combination of industrial action, economic stagnation, and energy shortages led to its being termed the “Winter of Discontent”. A sense of crisis hung in the air. In January 1979, Prime Minister James Callaghan was at a summit in Guadeloupe and was asked by a journalist about “the mounting chaos in the country”. He responded that he didn’t think others would agree with the journalist’s assessment that the country was in chaos.

The war that had followed these events had empowered the state to levels never previously seen in history, and these states had used their power to constrain the activities of the international financiers who were sponsoring the event. The MPS objected to any state intervention that stood in the way of free markets. They were deeply offended by the creation of the National Health Service and the introduction of a social safety net. The rise of the unions and the role of the state in supporting collective bargaining were equally significant affronts to neoliberal ideology. But perhaps the most egregious aspect of the post-war consensus was the continued existence of capital controls. Allowing the state to determine where an individual could put their money was seen by some as a threat to human liberty, and to others simply as a barrier to profitability. The alliance between ideologues, desperate to create a world free of totalitarianism where private enterprise thrived, and the opportunists who wanted to undermine a system that was preventing them from making money, marked the Mont Pelerin Society from day one.


pages: 772 words: 203,182

What Went Wrong: How the 1% Hijacked the American Middle Class . . . And What Other Countries Got Right by George R. Tyler

8-hour work day, active measures, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, bank run, banking crisis, Basel III, Black Swan, blood diamonds, blue-collar work, Bolshevik threat, bonus culture, British Empire, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, carried interest, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate governance, corporate personhood, corporate raider, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, credit crunch, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Brooks, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, deindustrialization, Diane Coyle, disruptive innovation, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, eurozone crisis, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, George Akerlof, George Gilder, Gini coefficient, Gordon Gekko, hiring and firing, income inequality, invisible hand, job satisfaction, John Markoff, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, lake wobegon effect, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, manufacturing employment, market clearing, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, minimum wage unemployment, mittelstand, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, Naomi Klein, Northern Rock, obamacare, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, pension reform, performance metric, pirate software, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, precariat, price stability, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, rent-seeking, reshoring, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, transcontinental railway, transfer pricing, trickle-down economics, tulip mania, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game

Stagnant and declining wages are the new reality that makes Tim’s experience a common one, including surprisingly low wages, even in union shops or for higher technology jobs requiring college degrees and intensive training. Unionization has been integral to higher wages, and still is; in 2010, for example, unionized manufacturing workers in Indiana earned 16 percent more than nonunion employees. Union membership began eroding in 1965. But the benefits to the middle class of collective bargaining began to fall most sharply after 1980 as a new breed of executives began utilizing the Taft-Hartley Act to weaken unions and wages while stepping up the offshoring of high-value manufacturing jobs.6 Desperate to attract new jobs amid recession and rising imports, the UAW and other industrial unions reluctantly began to accept two-tier wage structures during the 1980s. That trend ended temporarily as these labor contracts expired in the robust 1990s amid tight labor markets and rising wages.

This requires … top-notch management skills that would innovate and capture opportunities.”36 The urgency of upskilling drives an inclusive education system where “every Australian is offered the opportunity to succeed and reach their full potential,” explained Chris Evans, Australian Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations in November 2010. And it drives a business culture in which expectations are a “fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay, the right of employees to collectively bargain with their employer and the right to safe and fair working conditions.”37 For nearly a century, Australian voters have repeatedly made clear they want those expectations to be met by the business community and to be monitored by an alert trade union network and public sector. They demand that conservative and liberal governments alike implement those expectations, with a nationwide comprehensive bargaining and wage system overseen by the federal government as the day-to-day guarantor of Australian family prosperity.

Why Wages Stagnate The elements of Reaganomics are major factors in wage stagnation, including its Randian corporate culture, offshoring, short-termism, and quarterly shareholder or managerial capitalism. Another factor has been the failure of Washington officials to mimic the tactics of the family capitalism countries in ameliorating the impact of globalization. Economists cite three other significant factors: employer collusion to limit wage increases, the sagging minimum wage, and the weakening of employee collective bargaining power.42 Employer Collusion to Minimize Wages Even blue-chip enterprises cross the line in colluding to suppress wages. For example, the Obama administration’s Department of Justice settled two antitrust lawsuits in 2010, in which several leading high-tech firms agreed to pay penalties for conspiring against their own highly skilled artisans. Lucasfilm and rival Pixar were found to have illegally colluded to avoid wage-bidding wars for prized digital animators.


pages: 309 words: 91,581

The Great Divergence: America's Growing Inequality Crisis and What We Can Do About It by Timothy Noah

assortative mating, autonomous vehicles, blue-collar work, Bonfire of the Vanities, Branko Milanovic, business cycle, call centre, collective bargaining, computer age, corporate governance, Credit Default Swap, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Deng Xiaoping, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Erik Brynjolfsson, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, feminist movement, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, Gini coefficient, Gunnar Myrdal, income inequality, industrial robot, invisible hand, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, lump of labour, manufacturing employment, moral hazard, oil shock, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, performance metric, positional goods, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, purchasing power parity, refrigerator car, rent control, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, The Spirit Level, too big to fail, trickle-down economics, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, upwardly mobile, very high income, Vilfredo Pareto, War on Poverty, We are the 99%, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Yom Kippur War

That meeting was held on a Sunday evening in November. The next day three members of Walmart’s “labor relations team” arrived from the company’s headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, and called a store-wide meeting (even though Noble was trying only to organize the tire and lube department). Company videos and PowerPoint presentations were shown. As Noble later recalled, one message was that “wages could be cut drastically” in collective bargaining. “People were giving me dirty looks,” Sylvia remembered. “I’m the only [union supporter] there, and they’re all staring at me like I’m the demon person from hell.” The labor relations team continued to hold similar meetings until the union vote took place in February. Meanwhile Noble, Sylvia, and the other pro-union employees weren’t permitted to discuss the union at all while they were on company property.

Business leaders were sitting down with labor leaders to discuss ways to manage not just individual companies but the entire economy. They didn’t do it because they wanted to. They did it because they had to, a circumstance wholly unimaginable today. The following year, Eric Johnston, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, made a statement whose spirit of conciliation would likely get any current Chamber president fired: “Labor unions are woven into our economic pattern of American life, and collective bargaining is a part of the democratic process. I say recognize this fact not only with our lips but with our hearts.” No smelling salts were needed to revive any who heard it.6 After a century of struggle, unions had won acceptance as an inevitable component to the modern industrial economy. America’s labor movement stood at the summit of its power. Walter Reuther was a living embodiment of labor’s ascendancy.

Pressure from below had been building for decades, and the Great Depression stirred additional labor unrest. Then, in 1933, the National Industrial Recovery Act guaranteed the right of employees to join unions. Even though there was little the government could do to protect that right, the law’s passage stirred the rank and file to action. In 1935 the Wagner Act, often described as labor’s Magna Carta, established unions’ right to engage in collective bargaining and created the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to protect that right. Reuther’s beating two years later received prominent attention at an NLRB hearing on Henry Ford’s union-busting tactics, and the NLRB ordered Ford to desist. After Ford resisted the NLRB ruling in the courts, a UAW-organized strike at the Ford plant in 1941 persuaded the company to surrender. In an NLRB-supervised election Ford workers voted in the UAW, and the union’s organization of the big three automakers was complete.


pages: 338 words: 92,465

Reskilling America: Learning to Labor in the Twenty-First Century by Katherine S. Newman, Hella Winston

active measures, blue-collar work, business cycle, collective bargaining, Computer Numeric Control, deindustrialization, desegregation, factory automation, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, job-hopping, knowledge economy, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, performance metric, reshoring, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, two tier labour market, union organizing, upwardly mobile, War on Poverty, Wolfgang Streeck, working poor

Companies gain from the investment they make in training low-skilled employees who they don’t want to lose; employers gain from the regulation of wages, which means very productive workers are paid less than they would be in a more flexible employment system.2 As we have seen, unions are also important, as they can shape how firms train and then subsequently employ workers. Also with highly centralized collective bargaining, unions and business groups are better positioned to lobby the state to enact policies that promote vocational training.3 Beginning at age sixteen, German students in the vocational and educational training (VET) sector attend school one or two days a week and spend the rest of the week in the workplace. A Vocational Training Act outlines detailed rules for establishing occupational titles, training content, and duration, as well as examination or assessment standards and certification requirements.

This power-sharing arrangement prevents VW from escaping the strictures of codetermination by setting up shop in other countries and it ensures the representation of workers not only from VW but from the hundreds of suppliers whose employees are also affected by any decision the company makes to start or stop production, close or open a plant, cut or extend a shift.15 Codetermination strikes a balance between economic efficiency and employment security, production strength and the ecological responsibilities that the works councils regard as integral to decisions over plant locations. Works councils in every plant oversee the decision making on all aspects of plant operations. All employees below the level of senior management are represented in the councils, and they are paralleled by the trade unions, who appoint shop stewards whose main responsibilities involve provisions of the collective bargaining contracts. A Europe-wide works council deals with agreements that go beyond workplace policy. In 2002, the European Works Council developed a social rights charter and a platform that guarantees freedom of assembly. These are rights taken for granted in Europe, but in China, where VW was interested in setting up a number of new production facilities, this was hardly the case. In 2006, the firm’s international works council developed a policy of sustainability designed to govern supplier relations.

Historic antagonism between the labor movement and southern politics has sidelined the unions, though that story may not have come to a conclusion yet. Some German unions are strong enough to insist that companies like Volkswagen adopt governing structures in the United States that look like the ones they are used to at home. This requirement was put to the test in 2014, when the VW plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, narrowly failed to adopt the United Auto Workers as its representatives for collective bargaining. The plant, which opened in 2008, first became the subject of controversy in 2013 after the UAW attempted to unionize the labor force, drawing opposition from right-wing politicians and others who feared such a move would deter other businesses from setting up shop in the state. In that right-to-work state, many workers were just as resistant to the entreaties of the UAW.24 Ultimately the union vote (narrowly) failed, but in November 2014 VW—apparently under pressure from its labor union in Germany—announced a new policy that would allow employees to be represented by several labor groups, among them the UAW.25 The new rules require that at least 15 percent of the workforce must join up for their union to have some level of representation.


pages: 339 words: 95,270

Trade Wars Are Class Wars: How Rising Inequality Distorts the Global Economy and Threatens International Peace by Matthew C. Klein

Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, asset allocation, asset-backed security, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business climate, business cycle, capital controls, centre right, collective bargaining, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deglobalization, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, financial innovation, financial repression, fixed income, full employment, George Akerlof, global supply chain, global value chain, illegal immigration, income inequality, intangible asset, invention of the telegraph, joint-stock company, land reform, Long Term Capital Management, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, mortgage debt, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open economy, paradox of thrift, passive income, reserve currency, rising living standards, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, sovereign wealth fund, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, trade liberalization, Wolfgang Streeck

This has gone hand in hand with a collapse in the share of German workers covered by collective bargaining: whereas more than 80 percent of German workers had been covered by collective bargaining in the mid-1990s, fewer than 45 percent of German workers are covered by a collective bargaining agreement today. Economists estimate that “Germany’s wages in 2008 would have been higher if union coverage had remained the same as in 1995 throughout the entire wage distribution, but the difference is particularly large at the lower end of the wage distribution.” Fig. 5.5 Verteilungskampf (share of German national income going to the top 10 percent). Source: Charlotte Bartels via the World Inequality Database Inequality even rose within the ranks of the unionized thanks to the replacement of sectorwide collective bargaining with bespoke agreements negotiated by individual “works councils.”

About half of the value of German motor vehicle output now comes from imported components.14 The threat of relocation gave German employers a powerful tool for holding down wages at home: if German unions pushed for higher pay, businesses would simply move jobs and factories a few hundred miles to the east. After subtracting inflation, the median wage of manufacturing workers in the former West Germany grew just 5 percent in total between 1991 and 2000. These developments meant that unions were less useful to German workers than in the past, and membership plunged by a third in the 1990s. At the same time, industrywide collective bargains were watered down with so-called opening clauses that gave local union representatives the option to negotiate bespoke deals at the company level. By the end of the 1990s, most of the remaining German union members were working under these looser contracts. The unions’ priority was to preserve jobs at the cost of forgoing pay raises. They failed: between 1993 and 1997, German manufacturing employment fell by 15 percent.

,” FT Alphaville, March 28, 2018, https://ftalphaville.ft.com/2018/03/29/2199403/marcel-fratzscher-on-the-dark-side-of-the-german-economy-now-with-transcript/; Cathrin Schaer, “Germany’s Convoluted Property Tax Could Be Illegal,” Handelsblatt, January 16, 2018; Alena Bachleitner, “Abolishing the Wealth Tax—A Case Study of Germany” (M.Sc. thesis, University of Vienna, 2017); Dan Andrews and Aida Caldera Sánchez, “The Evolution of Homeownership Rates in Selected OECD Countries: Demographic and Public Policy Influences,” OECD Journal: Economic Studies 2011, no. 1 (2011): 8; Christian Dustmann, Bernd Fitzenberger, and Markus Zimmerman, “Housing Expenditures and Income Inequality: Shifts in Housing Costs Exacerbated the Rise in Income Inequality,” VoxEU, October 22, 2018, https://voxeu.org/article/housing-expenditures-and-income-inequality. 39. Odendahl, “Hartz Myth”; Destatis, “Collective Bargaining Coverage,” https://www.destatis.de/EN/FactsFigures/NationalEconomyEnvironment/EarningsLabourCosts/AgreedEarnings/Tables_CollectiveBargainingCoverage/CollectiveBargainingCoverage.html; Christian Dustmann et al., “From Sick Man of Europe to Economic ­Superstar: Germany’s Resurgent Economy,” Journal of Economic Perspectives 28, no. 1 (Winter 2014): 167–88; Charlotte Bartels, “Top Incomes in Germany, 1871–2013,” World Income Database Working Paper Series, December 2017. 40.


Power Systems: Conversations on Global Democratic Uprisings and the New Challenges to U.S. Empire by Noam Chomsky, David Barsamian

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, American ideology, Chelsea Manning, collective bargaining, colonial rule, corporate personhood, David Brooks, discovery of DNA, double helix, drone strike, failed state, Howard Zinn, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, inflation targeting, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Julian Assange, land reform, Martin Wolf, Mohammed Bouazizi, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, new economy, obamacare, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, Powell Memorandum, quantitative easing, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, single-payer health, sovereign wealth fund, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, Tobin tax, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, uranium enrichment, WikiLeaks

Over time, this campaign had some success, but a majority of the workforce would still prefer to be unionized if they could be.7 Barriers have been set up by state policy which make it very hard to join a union.8 The consequence of all this is that private-sector unionization is down to about 7 percent.9 Public-sector unions still haven’t been destroyed, but that’s why there is a bitter attack against them right now. The attack in Wisconsin on the right of workers to organize and collectively bargain is a clear example.10 The issues in Wisconsin have nothing to do with the state budget deficit. That’s a fraud that’s simply used as a pretext. The issue is the right of collective bargaining, one of the basic principles of union organization. The business world wants to destroy that. Rhetoric aside, has the Democratic Party really been a friend of organized labor and the working class? Compared with the Republicans, yes, but that’s not saying much. The studies of Larry Bartels and other political scientists show that working people and the poor tend to do somewhat better under Democratic than Republican administrations.11 But that just means that the Republicans are deeper in the pockets of the corporate system than the Democrats are.

., 7, 58, 70, 90, 110, 153 Iraq War, 16, 56, 114–16 response to 9/11, 15–26 war crimes, 114–16 business, 25, 36, 38, 39, 40, 76–77, 81, 103, 123, 169 Butler, Smedley, 13, 14 California, 167, 172 campaign finance, 173–74 Canada, 24, 73, 161–64 capitalism, 77–78, 147, 170–73 Caribbean, 7, 161 Carlos the Jackal, (Ilich Ramírez Sánchez), 21 Carothers, Thomas, 62, 64 Carter, Jimmy, 151 Ceauescu, Nicolae, 17 CELAC, 161 Central America, 21, 36 natural resources, 17–18 Chace, James, 61 Chavis, Benjamin, 65 children, 38, 82, 83 language acquisition in, 126–36 Chile, 61 China, 7–10, 50, 57, 77, 106, 107, 164, 169 ecological problems, 12 economic growth, 7–13 -India relations, 20–22 industry, 11–13 labor, 9–12 “loss of,” 57, 60 Maoist, 12 Chun Doo-hwan, 17 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 173–74 civil liberties, 69–73, 175 military detention and, 70–73 civil rights movement, 24, 30–31, 45, 65–66, 72, 150, 167, 176 climate change, 75, 121–25, 159 Clinton, Bill, 58, 83, 90, 170 Clinton, Hillary, 162 COINTELPRO, 73, 74, 120 collective bargaining, 40–41 Colombia, 7, 72, 145, 160, 164 colonialism, 3–5, 9, 46, 51 Communist Party, 23–24, 27, 29, 75, 118 Congress, U.S., 27, 32, 41–42, 85 Congress of Industrial Organizations, 23, 68 consensus, 74–75 Constitution, U.S., 72, 85, 174–75 consumerism, 36, 37, 80 corporations, 10, 24, 26, 27, 31–32, 38, 41, 76–77, 81, 103, 119, 152, 174 piracy issue, 107–8 Cuba, 4, 160, 161 culture, and language, 138–40 deaf-blind, 134–35 debt, 8, 87, 152, 168 student, 152 decolonization, 5, 46 democracy, 47, 54, 62, 79–81, 84–85, 109, 112, 143–44, 150, 151, 158–59, 172 Democratic Party, 32, 41–42 demonstrations, 29–33, 35, 40–43, 73–77 Arab Spring, 44–55, 60–64, 67, 112–13, 168 civil rights, 24, 30–31, 45, 65–66, 72, 150, 167, 176 Occupy, 47, 65–69, 74–77, 118–21, 146, 168, 177 student, 73–74 Depression, 23, 27, 28 deregulation, 48, 173–74 Dewey, John, 147, 148, 149 Dink, Hrant, 89, 91 dissidents, 144–45 doctrinal system, 8, 10, 36, 38, 158, 159 Dönitz, Karl, 116 Draghi, Mario, 169 drugs, 160–62 Durand Line, 99 Duvalier, Jean-Claude, 17 Economic Policy Institute, 168 economy, 4, 32, 76–78, 97, 121, 168, 171 Arab Spring, 44–55, 60–64, 67 Chinese, 7–10 financial crisis, 23, 48, 86–89, 168–69 global shift of power, 5–13, 58, 76–77 Indian, 7, 10–11, 20–23 stimulus, 33 U.S. decline, 4–10, 56, 59–60 education, 37, 82, 147–56, 165–68 battle over, 147–56 higher, 150–53, 165–68 K-to-12, 153–56 privatization of, 38–39, 156, 167–68 public, 37–39, 147–48, 153–56, 166–68 science, 154–55 Egypt, 35, 51, 53, 61, 67 Arab Spring, 44–49, 54, 60–64, 67, 168 Einstein, Albert, 143 Eisenhower, Dwight, 125 electoral politics, 102–13, 117–19 electronic books, 104 Ellsberg, Daniel, 15, 113 El Salvador, 145 Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 148, 156 Enlightenment, 116, 147, 148 environment, 12, 75, 121–25, 158–59, 163–65, 176 climate change, 75, 121–25, 159 fracking, 164–65 Erdoan, Recep Tayyip, 89, 90, 93 Europe, 5, 6, 9, 47, 51, 58, 161 economic crisis, 47, 86–89, 168–69 European Central Bank (ECB), 86–87, 169 European Union, 87, 89, 92 evolution, 128, 129, 137–38 Facebook, 145, 146 Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), 15, 71, 73 Federal Reserve, 86–87 financial crisis, 23, 48, 86–89, 168–69 Financial Times, 66, 76, 78, 123 Finland, 153, 154 Foreign Affairs, 59, 61 fossil fuels, 21, 22, 49–55, 122–24, 164, 165 fracking, 123, 164–65 France, 46, 50, 52, 68, 112–13, 170 Fraser, Doug, 25 Freedom of Information Act, 110 Gadhafi, Mu’ammar, 50, 53 Galileo, 143, 144 Gates, Bill, 11 Gaza, 93 General Motors, 33, 80 genetics, 126–27, 129, 140 Germany, 15, 27, 51, 58, 118, 153 economic policy, 88 Nazism, 28–29, 115–16 Weimar Republic, 25, 27–29 World War II, 115–16 GI bill, 152 Ginsberg, Benjamin, The Fall of the Faculty, 168 globalization, 5, 20–22, 170 financial crisis, 86–89, 168–69 labor, 9–12, 76–77, 169–70 shift of power, 5–13, 58, 76–77 Goldman Sachs, 42 Google, 107 government, 78–85, 150, 158 big, 81, 82 security, 107–13 “Grand Area” planning, 57 Great Britain, 5, 8–9, 16, 17, 21, 35, 50, 52, 61, 79, 107, 139, 172 colonialism, 9, 20 government, 79 slavery, 36 World War II, 115, 116 Greece, 87 Guantánamo, 72–73 Guatemala, 21 gun culture, 162–63 Gwadar, 22 Haiti, 11, 13–14, 17 Hale, Kenneth, 136, 139–41 Hanif, Mohammed, A Case of Exploding Mangoes, 106 Haq, Abdul, 16 Harvard University, Institute of Politics, 158 Havel, Václav, 145 health care, 24, 76, 82, 157 Obamacare, 124 Heilbrunn, Jacob, 111 Hindenburg, Paul von, 27–28 historical amnesia, 97–98 Hitler, Adolf, 28–29, 32, 88 Holder v.

., 85 Human Development Index, 13 “Human Intelligence and the Environment” (Chomsky), 42 Humanitarian Law Project, 70–71 human rights, 109, 113 violations, 89–92, 95–96, 145 Humboldt, Wilhelm von, 149 Hume, David, 79, 81 Hussein, Saddam, 17, 71, 95 imperialism, 1–33 saltwater fallacy, 3–4 terminology, 3 India, 7, 9, 10–11, 17–23, 38, 50, 51, 107, 164 Bhopal explosion, 174 British rule, 20 -China relations, 20–22 economic growth, 7, 10–11, 20–23 -Israel relations, 20, 21 natural resources, 17–20 neoliberalism and, 19–22 TAPI pipeline and, 17–18 -U.S. relations, 20–22 war, 20 indignados, 47 Indonesia, 17 intellectual culture, 79, 81, 104–6, 141 intellectual property rights, 107–8 International Energy Association (IEA), 121–22 International Monetary Fund (IMF), 47 International Organization for a Participatory Society, 171 international relations (IR) theory, 8, 63 Internet, 105–13 security, 107–13 iPhone, 145–46 Iran, 18, 60, 62, 63, 90–91, 93, 95–98, 111, 112, 114 nuclear threat, 112 TAPI pipeline and, 18 Iran-Iraq War, 97 Iraq, 16–17, 21, 60, 61 Kurds, 95–96 nationalism, 55–56 U.S. war in, 16–17, 55–56, 62–63, 114–16 Islam, 60 political, 49, 61 radical, 61, 100 Israel, 20, 21, 96, 112 -India relations, 20, 21 -Lebanon relations, 63 Palestinian conflict, 46 -Turkey relations, 92–94 -U.S. relations, 21 Jacob, François, 129 James, William, 130 Japan, 5, 8, 58, 131, 139 Jefferson, Thomas, 3, 172 job creation, 76, 87 Kagan, Elena, 70 Karachi, 22 Keller, Bill, 144 Keller, Helen, 134, 135 Kennan, George, 57 Kennedy, John F., 2–3 Vietnam policy, 2–3, 97 Khadr, Omar, 72–73 King, Martin Luther, 30–31, 66, 105 Klein, Naomi, 123, 124 Kurds, 21, 89–92, 95–96 labor, 38, 81, 87, 169 anti-labor movements, 40 Arab Spring, 44–55, 60–64, 67 Chinese, 9–10, 11–12 collective bargaining, 40–41 demonstrations and strikes, 29, 33, 35, 40–43, 68, 120, 146 Depression-era, 23, 40, 67–68 global, 9–12, 76–77, 169–70 organized, 23–25, 39–41, 67–68, 147, 171 rustbelt, 11–12 solidarity, 39–41 unemployment, 22–23, 38, 66, 76 unions, 24–26, 33, 39–41, 68, 79, 147, 171 language, 126–42 biological acquisition of, 129–36 culture and, 138–40 sensory deprivation and, 134–35 similarity of, 140–41 study of, 137–38, 142 universal grammar, 126–59 Latin America, 4–7, 22, 61, 160–62, 164 drugs, 160–62 integration of, 6–7, 47, 161 U.S. military bases in, 6–7 Laxness, Halldór, 106 Lebanon, 63 Lee, Ching Kwan, 11 Left, 23, 25, 32–33, 59, 117, 147, 149, 150, 151 student, 73–74 Left Forum, 25, 27, 33 libertarianism, 157, 158, 163 Libya, 50–54, 91 no-fly zone, 50–52 Lippmann, Walter, 81 Madison, James, 84, 85 Magna Carta, 59, 72, 116 Mandela, Nelson, 71 Manning, Bradley, 113, 114 Marcos, Ferdinand, 17 market system, 80–81 Marx, Karl, 173, 175 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 13, 37, 105, 122, 134, 136, 149 mathematics, 137, 138 McCain, John, 103 McCarthyism, 24 McKiernan, Kevin, 95 media, 32, 66, 150, 151 mental slavery, 34–35, 101–25 Mexico, 11, 152–53, 162, 175 Middle East, 17, 44–64, 89–100, 111 Arab Spring, 44–55, 60–64, 67, 112–13, 168 oil, 21, 49–55 Turkish-Israeli relations, 92–94 uprisings, 44–64 military, 5, 98 Arab Spring, 44–55, 60–64 detention, 70–73 police, 119–20 U.S. bases in Latin America, 6–7 Mobutu Sese Seko, 17 Mondragon, 171 Montgomery, David, The Fall of the House of Labor, 23 Morgenthau, Hans, 63–64 The Purpose of American Politics, 64 Morocco, 46 Mubarak, Hosni, 45, 47, 62 Nader, Ralph, 150 NAFTA, 163, 175 Nasser, Gamal Abdel, 61 National Defense Authorization Act, 70 Native Americans, 22 natural gas, 17–18, 164–65 natural resources, 17–22, 164–65 Navy, U.S., 6–7, 14, 52, 116 Nazism, 28–29, 115–16 New Deal, 23, 82 New York, 67, 100, 166 New York Times, 60, 81, 89–91, 124, 144–45, 160 Ngo Dinh Diem, 2, 3 Ngo Dinh Nhu, 2, 3 Nicaragua, 7 9/11 attacks, 14, 15–16, 139 Nixon, Richard, 125, 150 No Child Left Behind, 153 Non-Proliferation Treaty, 18 North Africa, 46–48, 57, 60 North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), 50, 51, 91, 92 Norway, 115 nuclear weapons, 97, 98, 100, 110, 112, 176 Nuremberg Trials, 115–16 Nystrom, Paul, 36 Obama, Barack, 7, 33, 63, 90–91, 93, 110, 111, 114, 153, 162, 164 Afghanistan War and, 14–15 civil liberties and, 70–73 Libya and, 51–52 organized labor and, 41–42 2008 election, 102–3 Obamacare, 124 Occupy movements, 47, 65–69, 74–77, 118–21, 146, 168, 177 oil, 21, 22, 49–55, 124 Orwell, George, 19, 97 Pakistan, 16, 17, 22, 61, 98–100, 110 drone attacks on, 18–19, 98–99 nuclear industry, 98–100, 110 TAPI pipeline and, 18 Palestine, 46, 72 -Israel conflict, 46 Palmer raids, 68 Pamuk, Orhan, 91 Panama, 7 Panetta, Leon, 114 Pashtuns, 99 Patterson, Anne W., 99, 110 Paul, Rand, 157, 162, 163 Paul, Ron, 75, 124–25, 157, 163 pensions, 12, 22, 24, 26 Peres, Shimon, 93 Peshawar, 16 pharmaceutical companies, 107–8 Philippines, 4, 17 Pinochet, Augusto, 61 piracy, 107–8 political Islam, 49, 61 Political Science Quarterly, 82 police repression, 119–20 politics, 32, 41, 57, 59, 121, 142–45, 171 electoral, 102–3, 117–19 labor demonstrations and, 41–43 poverty, 6, 66, 82, 84 Powell, Colin, 115 Powell, Lewis, 150–51 Powell memorandum, 150–51 power systems, 34–35, 69 aristocrats and democrats, 160–78 chains of submission and subservience, 34–43 global shift, 5–13, 58, 76–77 language and education, 126–59 mental slavery, 101–25 new American imperialism, 1–33 uprisings, 44–64 privatization, 11, 38, 39, 40, 156–57, 167 Progressive Labor (PL), 73 propaganda system, 35–40, 66, 80, 82, 102, 119, 122–24 property rights, 84, 85 public, power of the, 78–81 public education, 37–39, 147–48, 153–56, 166–68 public relations, 35, 79–81, 102–3 Qasim, Abd al-Karim, 61 Race to the Top, 153 racism, 3, 31, 92 Ravitch, Diane, 154 Reagan, Ronald, 62, 71, 82, 95, 99 recession, 23, 48, 86–89 Red Scare, 23, 68, 120 Reich, Robert, 170, 172 Reilly, John, 122 Republican Party, 41, 57, 75, 76, 124, 125 Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), 72 Ribbentrop, Joachim von, 115 Right, 23, 32, 150–51 Riyadh, 52 Romney, Mitt, 57–58, 75 Roosevelt, Franklin D., 14, 23, 54 Roy, Arundhati, 22, 29, 31 Russia, 17–18, 20, 50, 61, 98, 102, 145 rustbelt, 11–12 Saharawi movement, 46 saltwater fallacy, 3–4 Saudi Arabia, 21, 49, 52, 61, 99, 111, 144 science, 142–43, 144 education, 154–55 modern, 143 sectarianism, 73–74 Seib, Gerald, 54 self-destruction, 42–43 Senate, U.S., 63, 85 sensory deprivation, 134–35 Shiites, 52–53 Singh, Manmohan, 19 Sino-Indian War, 20 slavery, 3, 34, 36, 51 end of, 34, 35, 36 mental, 34–35, 101–25 Slim, Carlos, 11 Smith, Adam, 8–9 social Darwinism, 157 social media, 105, 107, 145–47 Social Security, 39, 156–57 solidarity, 38–41, 146–47, 159 South Africa, 21, 50–51 apartheid, 71 South America, 6, 7, 57, 60, 161 Southeast Asia, 4, 60 South Korea, 9, 17 Spain, 4, 6, 33, 87 sports, college, 154–55 Stack, Joseph, 25–26, 29 Stalin, Joseph, 61 Stohl, Bev, 105 Stop Online Piracy Act, 107 strategic hamlets, 2 student activism, 73–74 submission and subservience, chains of, 34–43 Summit of the Americas (2012), 160–61 sunbelt, 11, 12 Sunnis, 52–53 Supreme Court, U.S., 70, 150 Buckley v.


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Social Democratic America by Lane Kenworthy

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, basic income, business cycle, Celtic Tiger, centre right, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate governance, David Brooks, desegregation, Edward Glaeser, endogenous growth, full employment, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, Home mortgage interest deduction, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, Kenneth Arrow, labor-force participation, manufacturing employment, market bubble, minimum wage unemployment, new economy, postindustrial economy, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, school choice, shareholder value, sharing economy, Skype, Steve Jobs, too big to fail, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, universal basic income, War on Poverty, working poor, zero day

The answer is that most of the time there are more people seeking jobs than employers seeking workers. The resulting power asymmetry tends to force wages down to a very low level. Legislation (a statutory minimum wage) or collective bargaining can impose a wage floor with no employment-reducing impact, and so it is a good idea to do so. The trick is to figure out the tipping point—the level above which employment is impeded—and set the wage floor at or near that point. The optimal wage floor will differ across regions. In the United States the federal government sets a minimum wage, but many states and some cities establish a higher minimum. That’s a sensible arrangement. The optimal floor also will differ across industries. This is something collective bargaining is ideally suited to address, but America’s unions are so weak that at some point government may have to play a more active role. 2.

In Denmark, for instance, the hourly wage for a hotel room cleaner as of 2006 was about $16 per hour, making annual full-time earnings around $32,000. In the United States, by contrast, a comparable job would have yielded earnings of about $11,000. In fact, according to calculations by Peter Edelman, half of the jobs in the United States pay less than $34,000 a year, and nearly a quarter pay less than $22,000.128 There is no prospect of low-end service employees in the United States achieving Danish-level wages via collective bargaining. American unions are too weak. But suppose we raised the statutory minimum wage from its current level of $7.25 per hour to $15. Would that be a good thing to do? Maybe not. We should care more about posttransfer-posttax household income than about individual wages, and there are ways to get to a decent income floor that don’t require a high wage floor.129 The Denmark–United States comparison illustrates this.

Earlier I asked you to imagine a rise in the US minimum wage to $15 per hour. In reality, this is extremely unlikely to happen. Figure 4.25 shows the evolution of America’s minimum wage and EITC, expressed in annual (rather than hourly) values. The minimum wage increased steadily until the 1970s, but it then fell and has been flat since. As of 2013 the federal minimum is $7.25 per hour, less than half the Danish (collectively bargained) minimum. We certainly can afford a higher minimum wage, yet recent history offers no reason to believe it will get close to the Danish level. More likely is a moderate increase in the minimum wage coupled with an increase in the EITC. In 1993 the EITC was indexed to the inflation rate, so it, unlike the minimum wage, always keeps up with price increases. In the past several decades it has risen faster than prices, due to legislated increases in the late 1980s, the early 1990s, and 2009.


pages: 491 words: 77,650

Humans as a Service: The Promise and Perils of Work in the Gig Economy by Jeremias Prassl

3D printing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Andrei Shleifer, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, call centre, cashless society, Clayton Christensen, collaborative consumption, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, future of work, George Akerlof, gig economy, global supply chain, hiring and firing, income inequality, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kickstarter, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, market friction, means of production, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, pattern recognition, platform as a service, Productivity paradox, race to the bottom, regulatory arbitrage, remote working, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Rosa Parks, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Simon Singh, software as a service, Steve Jobs, TaskRabbit, The Future of Employment, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, transaction costs, transportation-network company, Travis Kalanick, two tier labour market, two-sided market, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, union organizing, working-age population

Building on the notion that on-demand economy platforms represent a genuinely novel form of work, deserving of its own legal status and regulatory apparatus, Seth Harris, a former Deputy US Secretary of Labor, and Alan Krueger, a Princeton economist who has repeatedly collaborated with on-demand platforms, have argued in favour of the statutory introduction of a third, intermediate category to capture gig-economy workers. Their ‘independent worker’ would be entitled to some protection, including collective bargaining rights and elements of social security provision, whilst being denied recourse to basic standards such as wage and hours protection.67 Would the introduction of such a status be helpful? Not necessarily. Platforms would immediately be relieved of some of employers’ most costly obligations—whilst continuing to litigate over independent worker status. As an exasperated US district judge noted, the task of determining worker status is often akin to being ‘handed a square peg and asked to choose between two round holes’.68 Adding a third round hole is unlikely to solve any classification problems.

The promise of freedom, finally, rings equally hollow, with platforms’ busi- ness models making it difficult for workers to assert their fundamental rights, including the freedom to form a union and bargain collectively. Most operators are unsurprisingly hostile to any efforts at organizing genuinely independent worker representation. When unionization was on the cards in Seattle, Uber’s call-centre representatives were instructed to ring up drivers and ‘share some thoughts’ about how ‘collective bargaining and unioniza- tion do not fit the characteristics of how most partners use the Uber platform’.69 * * * 66 Lost in the Crowd As former New York Times correspondent Steven Greenhouse notes: In many ways, digital on-demand workers face far more obstacles to organiz- ing and being heard than workers in the traditional economy. Isolated as so many of them are, on-demand workers rarely meet face to face, and online forums are a second-best substitute for building trust and solidarity.

Or maybe she just wants to take a job until she pays for a davenport or a new fur coat.’49 None of this is to suggest, of course, that in centuries past—as today—there wasn’t the same heterogeneity of motivations behind casual work, including instances of work to earn genuine supplementary income and while away the idle hours, or even those who genuinely preferred to stay away from work directly supervised by a boss, or from the often coarse environments of the factory and workshop floor.50 The overall impact of the ‘hybrid’ market–hierarchy model on labour markets is nonetheless clear: a large, low-skilled taskforce fundamentally undermines workers’ individual and collective bargaining power. The isola- tion and irregularity of the work made it hard to organize collectively,51 leaving some employers to brag in 1876 that the system allowed them to enjoy: a kind of auction reversed. On a Monday morning the contractors or master- men assemble at the master’s warehouse . . . he calls them in one by one, and test them as to what prices they will make certain chains for, invariably giving the work to those who offer the lowest tender.52 History Repeats Itself Even a brief historical survey can thus debunk the on-demand economy’s claim to innovation, at least as far as work is concerned.


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The Making of Global Capitalism by Leo Panitch, Sam Gindin

accounting loophole / creative accounting, active measures, airline deregulation, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Basel III, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, bilateral investment treaty, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collective bargaining, continuous integration, corporate governance, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, dark matter, Deng Xiaoping, disintermediation, ending welfare as we know it, eurozone crisis, facts on the ground, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, financial intermediation, floating exchange rates, full employment, Gini coefficient, global value chain, guest worker program, Hyman Minsky, imperial preference, income inequality, inflation targeting, interchangeable parts, interest rate swap, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, land reform, late capitalism, liberal capitalism, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, manufacturing employment, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, means of production, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Monroe Doctrine, moral hazard, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, Myron Scholes, new economy, non-tariff barriers, Northern Rock, oil shock, precariat, price stability, quantitative easing, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, regulatory arbitrage, reserve currency, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, seigniorage, shareholder value, short selling, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, special drawing rights, special economic zone, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, trade liberalization, transcontinental railway, trickle-down economics, union organizing, very high income, Washington Consensus, Works Progress Administration, zero-coupon bond, zero-sum game

When General Motors, the largest manufacturing company in the world, and the UAW, the most prominent union in the country, institutionalized the “Fordist” link between mass production and mass consumption through this path-breaking collective agreement, they went far beyond anything that Henry Ford ever imagined. By tying company-level wage increases to estimates of national productivity increases, and building in inflation protection through a cost-of-living index, they implicitly accepted that collective bargaining would not disturb the existing distribution of income. The Treaty also centralized power within the union. As the focus of collective bargaining shifted to the negotiation of company-wide wage and benefit increases, and as the union accepted management’s control over production at the shop-floor level, local rank-and-file power was undermined. Since the New Deal labor law allowed for the right to strike during the term of a collective agreement, the Treaty’s requirement that authority for this in any plant had to be secured from the national union leadership further institutionalized a corporatist relationship between top company and union leaders, and the loss of local autonomy.

This approach proved quite successful in the case of agriculture.49 But the limited capacity of the state in relation to industry was immediately revealed when the National Industry Recovery Act (NIRA) reverted to the corporatist model introduced in World War I. A National Recovery Administration (NRA) was established to oversee industrial self-regulation through a system of codes drawn up by the trade association in each sector. In a concession to labor, each code was required to establish minimum labor standards and collective bargaining rights, but its implementation was left to the discretion of the trade association itself.50 This failed as a solution to the crisis, not least because by “controlling most of the information about industrial operations on which the NRA codes and their enforcement would have to be based,” private firms constructed loopholes so as to escape the labor standards and cut back production while keeping prices high; while the “NRA apparatus, itself thoroughly permeated by conflicting business interests, was unable to resolve disputes in an authoritative fashion.”51 The experience with the NIRA “foreshadowed the trend for the executive branch of the state apparatus to organize and reorganize departments and decision-making centers that would eventually circumvent conflicting interests.”52 But for the time being, especially without increased wages or public expenditures on the scale needed to generate effective demand and restore profits (which fell by three-quarters in 1934), the promised economic recovery did not materialize.

As a Wall Street publication, the Annalist, put it at the time: “The large aggregates of financial capital stand to benefit in the long run from the new regime—the elimination of competitive methods, [the] close welding together of the private banking with the governmental financial apparatus, the increase of control and co-ordination—all are elements of strength of the future of financial capitalism.”57 From New Deal to Grand Truce with Capital It was, of course, not so much the administration’s financial reforms as its labor and social legislation that came to symbolize the “Second New Deal.” Although long advanced by liberal reformers, the 1935 National Labor Relations Act was only passed in response to what Senator Wagner himself, in introducing the Bill associated with his name, called “the rising tide of industrial discontent.” The Wagner Act legalized unionization campaigns, collective bargaining and the right to strike, and established quasi-juridical procedures for securing recognition and settling disputes. The Social Security Act of the same year founded the American welfare state with its national provisions for unemployment and retirement benefits. To be sure, given the state’s responsibilities for mediating class conflict and its dependence on capital accumulation, the Wagner Act also constrained labor militancy in various ways (not least by setting strict conditions for when the right to strike could be legally exercised), while the Social Security Act (in any case funded by regressive taxation) reinforced the discipline of the labor market with its limited benefits and the many conditions it established for eligibility.


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How Capitalism Saved America: The Untold History of Our Country, From the Pilgrims to the Present by Thomas J. Dilorenzo

banking crisis, British Empire, business cycle, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, financial deregulation, Fractional reserve banking, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, means of production, medical malpractice, Menlo Park, minimum wage unemployment, Norman Mailer, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price stability, profit maximization, profit motive, Ralph Nader, rent control, rent-seeking, Robert Bork, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, statistical model, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transcontinental railway, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, wealth creators, working poor, Works Progress Administration, zero-sum game

A lucid discussion of the ethical and economic case in favor of private property and free-market capitalism. Huber, Peter. Liability: The Legal Revolution and Its Consequences. New York: Basic Books, 1988. Huber describes the causes and consequences of America’s crazy liability law system, in which people with deep pockets are often sued regardless of whether they are liable for harming anyone. Hutt, William H. The Theory of Collective Bargaining. Washington, D.C.: Cato Institute, 1974. Hutt challenges the notion that workers are better off with collective bargaining instead of individual bargaining over wages and working conditions. He also exposes numerous myths about labor unions, such as the myth that unions are necessary to raise the living standards of workers. Kirzner, Israel. Competition and Entrepreneurship. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978. The author explains the role of entrepreneurship in the economy, something that most other economists ignore.

Hoover may have been a world-class mining engineer, but he had a dangerously poor grasp of economics, which fed his desire to remake American society. Joan Hoff Wilson describes Hoover’s basic economic beliefs as follows: There was too much lawlessness, destructive competition, and economic waste, too much unemployment and repetitiveness in factory work; the twelve-hour day was too long; labor lacked the guarantee of collective bargaining; child labor still existed despite prewar progressive legislation; education was inadequate in most states; some people were making too much money—“far beyond the needs of stimulation to initiative.”11 Each of these statements reflected Hoover’s fundamental misunderstanding of economics. While Hoover complained of the “lawlessness” bred by capitalism, it seems to have been lost on him that most of the lawlessness of the 1920s was a direct effect of federal regulation—Prohibition.

Laws against extortion exempted unions as long as the extortion involved “the payment of wages by a bona fide employer to a bona fide employee.”42 We feel the effects of many of these laws even today. Thanks primarily to FDR’s Depression-era labor legislation, labor unions can compel workers to pay dues as a condition of keeping their jobs, with the dues often being used for political purposes unrelated to collective bargaining; are immune from most federal court injunctions; are legally empowered to “represent” all workers in a bargaining unit, regardless of whether they are union members; can compel employers to make their private property available to union officials; are all but immune from paying damages for personal and property injury that they inflict; and can force employers to open up their books to them.43 As Friedrich Hayek wrote in The Constitution of Liberty (1960), “We have now reached a state where they [unions] have become uniquely privileged institutions to which the general rules of law do not apply.


pages: 223 words: 10,010

The Cost of Inequality: Why Economic Equality Is Essential for Recovery by Stewart Lansley

"Robert Solow", banking crisis, Basel III, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bonfire of the Vanities, borderless world, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, business process, call centre, capital controls, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate raider, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Edward Glaeser, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, floating exchange rates, full employment, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, high net worth, hiring and firing, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, James Dyson, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Meriwether, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, laissez-faire capitalism, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market bubble, Martin Wolf, mittelstand, mobile money, Mont Pelerin Society, Myron Scholes, new economy, Nick Leeson, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, oil shock, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, Right to Buy, rising living standards, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, shareholder value, The Great Moderation, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Washington Consensus, Winter of Discontent, working-age population

Independent studies have shown that greater controls would have only a minimal impact on the economy, but would greatly reduce the probability of crises.418 Secondly, the UK and the US currently have the most de-regulated labour markets amongst the world’s developed nations, offering only minimal levels of workplace protection.419 The evidence is clear, that countries with a high coverage of collective bargaining tend to have lower earnings dispersion. There is nothing unusual about labour being given a stronger voice in the workplace. Compared with the rest of Europe, the UK has one of the lowest proportions of workers covered by collective bargaining arrangements.420 In Germany and several other continental countries the unions are more integrated into workplace decision making in a way which brings a much more co-operative approach to the running of business and the economy. As part of the new contract with labour, Britain should move more closely to the continental European practice, especially the ‘flexicurity’ model followed mainly in Scandinavia.

‘There can be no robust recovery as long as corporations are intent on keeping idle workers sidelined and squeezing the pay of those on the job’ added the New York Times.415 Since the downturn there have been concerted efforts across the United States, mostly by big business, to further weaken the bargaining power of labour. In Wisconsin, the state’s Republican governor, Scott Walker, even tried in February 2011 to introduce a bill designed to remove collective bargaining and other union rights. In an echo of Ronald Reagan’s war on air traffic controllers in the 1980s, this was an attempt to dismantle what was left of union power, one which led to sustained protests across the country. A similar divide has been emerging in the UK. After falling in every year from 2005-2010, real take-home pay is now predicted to continue to fall for the next year or two at least.

As part of the new contract with labour, Britain should move more closely to the continental European practice, especially the ‘flexicurity’ model followed mainly in Scandinavia. These nations have both highly interventionist policies—which combine worker security with a flexible response to technological advance—and a strong record on employment generation, labour force participation and growth. They are characterised by strong collective bargaining and workforce protection along with generous welfare benefits buttressed by stringent job search requirements and time limits on the duration of benefits. In contrast to the Anglo-Saxon experience of high earnings inequality and high levels of in-work poverty, the flexicurity countries have combined high employment with much lower levels of wage inequality. Moving to such a model would enable a gradual rise in minimum wage levels in relative terms, the extension of the living wage—which pays roughly 30 per cent more than the minimum—and a fairer distribution of workplace, pre-tax incomes.


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Straight Talk on Trade: Ideas for a Sane World Economy by Dani Rodrik

3D printing, airline deregulation, Asian financial crisis, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, BRICs, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, carried interest, central bank independence, centre right, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, continuous integration, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Donald Trump, endogenous growth, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, eurozone crisis, failed state, financial deregulation, financial innovation, financial intermediation, financial repression, floating exchange rates, full employment, future of work, George Akerlof, global value chain, income inequality, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, investor state dispute settlement, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, Kenneth Rogoff, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market clearing, market fundamentalism, meta analysis, meta-analysis, moral hazard, Nelson Mandela, new economy, offshore financial centre, open borders, open economy, Pareto efficiency, postindustrial economy, price stability, pushing on a string, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, regulatory arbitrage, rent control, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Sam Peltzman, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, spectrum auction, Steven Pinker, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, unorthodox policies, Washington Consensus, World Values Survey, zero-sum game, éminence grise

But there would be a compensatory boost to the economy, they argued, that would come from the long-delayed and much-needed opening of the Greek economy to competitive market forces. The specifics demanded from Greece ranged from mundane to gut-wrenching. They included (in no particular order) lower barriers to entry in service businesses such as notaries, pharmacies, and taxis; reduced scope of collective bargaining; privatization of state assets; a rollback of pensions; and the cleanup of Greece’s notoriously inefficient and arguably corrupt tax administration. The IMF’s then-chief economist, Olivier Blanchard, (among others) argued that such reforms were critical in light of the “dismal productivity growth record of Greece before the program.”2 Less ambitious reforms wouldn’t do because they would have less impact on growth potential and necessitate greater debt relief.

Mauritius grew rapidly several years after independence. India’s growth performance lagged until the 1980s, but has been more than decent since (even overtaking China in recent years). Similarly, there is no reason why workers in low income countries should be deprived of fundamental labor rights for the sake of industrial development and export performance. These include freedom of association and collective bargaining, reasonably safe working conditions, nondiscrimination, maximum hours, and restrictions on arbitrary dismissal. As with democracy, these are basic requirements of a decent society. Their first-order effect is to level the bargaining relationship between employers and employees, rather than to raise overall costs of production. And even when costs are affected, any adverse effects could be easily offset by improved morale, better incentives, and reduced turnover of the workforce.

In 1981, the “trade adjustment assistance (TAA) program was one of the first things Reagan attacked, cutting its weekly compensation payments.”5 The damage continued under subsequent, Democratic administrations. In the words of Mishel, “if free-traders had actually cared about the working class they could have supported a full range of policies to support robust wage growth: full employment, collective bargaining, high labor standards, a robust minimum wage, and so on.” And all of this could have been done “before administering ‘shocks’ by expanding trade with low-wage countries.” Could the United States now reverse course and follow the newly emergent conventional wisdom? As late as 2007, political scientist Ken Scheve and economist Matt Slaughter called for “a New Deal for globalization” in the United States, which would link “engagement with the world economy to a substantial redistribution of income.”6 In the United States, they argued, this would mean adopting a much more progressive federal tax system.


Working the Phones: Control and Resistance in Call Centres by Jamie Woodcock

always be closing, anti-work, call centre, cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, David Graeber, invention of the telephone, job satisfaction, late capitalism, means of production, millennium bug, new economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, post-industrial society, post-work, precariat, profit motive, social intelligence, stakhanovite, women in the workforce

The challenge now is to think through the problem of organisation. There was no formal worker organisation – trade union or otherwise – in the call centre (but as we have seen this does not mean it was not a site of collective struggle). There are two key issues here. The first is the state of trade unionism in the UK. Trade unions have a basic aim under capitalism: to secure, usually by collective bargaining, better conditions for workers. But in practice contemporary trade unionism seems to have lost it’s ‘unionateness’: the ‘commitment of an organization to the general principles and ideology of trade unionism’,1 failing to even secure these better conditions in many cases. As we will discuss in this chapter, it is therefore difficult to connect workplace resistance to official trade unionism.

There are also additional pressures on workers who attempt to balance paid work and unpaid work, for example workers carrying out home and family responsibilities as well as employment. This remains primarily a demand on women in the workforce and increases the likelihood of employment in non-standard jobs that are temporary or casualised. It is therefore possible to say that the most precarious and vulnerable are those in low-paid, ‘non-standard’ jobs, without trade union organisation as they are not covered by either of the ‘three regulatory regimes – collective bargaining, employment protection rights and the national insurance system’.38 Much academic literature is concerned with ‘the unionized workforce’, yet ‘the non-unionized themselves, who comprise the majority of employees, have been marginalized’, something that Pollert and Charlwood argue demands renewed attention.39 138 Precarious Organisation the limitations of trade unions The problems of casualisation are compounded by the falling levels of trade union membership in the UK.

Thompson and Ackroyd argue that ‘political action by a succession of Conservative administrations has also clearly shaped the broader landscape’. They continue to argue that due to this, ‘three significant dimensions of policy can be identified: a strategy of de-regulation of labour markets and promotion of a low wage, low skill economy as a means of attracting inward investment; competitive tendering and internal markets in the public sector; and the sustained legislative assault on union organisation, employment rights and collective bargaining’.41 The level of strike action can be used as an indicator of the confidence and combativity of the working class. The institutional figures for trade union membership are worrying and the figures for official strike days paint a similar picture. In the 1980s there was an average of 400 strike days lost per 1,000 workers annually.42 Between 2003 and 2007 the average number of strike days per 1,000 workers had fallen to only 25.1.43 The past few years have seen the trade union movement responding to government austerity programmes, which involved three dimensions: the Trade Union Congress organised a significant demonstration on 26 March 2011 in London which was followed by two large strikes in June and November later that year.


pages: 525 words: 153,356

The People: The Rise and Fall of the Working Class, 1910-2010 by Selina Todd

call centre, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, credit crunch, deindustrialization, deskilling, different worldview, Downton Abbey, financial independence, full employment, income inequality, longitudinal study, manufacturing employment, Neil Kinnock, New Urbanism, Red Clydeside, rent control, Right to Buy, rising living standards, sexual politics, strikebreaker, The Spirit Level, unemployed young men, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, Winter of Discontent, women in the workforce, young professional

Yet as Alice Foley later wrote, the militancy of these years was ‘a first shot in the human struggle to retain traditional methods of production against those fierce on-coming thrusts of technocracy and automation which were to harass and bedevil the cotton industry for the next half-century.’15 The actions of people like her did help to establish a modicum of negotiation with their employers and ensured that industrial workers were not forced into the deferential role demanded of domestic servants, who lacked any collective bargaining rights. On the eve of the First World War, however, employers refused to grant their workers many rights at all. Unemployment was high, and their government favoured the harsh repression of industrial militancy; the mill owners and manufacturers of Britain could defy the strikers with the support of ministers of state. Less than a month after the Dundee jute strike of 1912 had failed, the socialist trade union activist Tom Mann was charged in Manchester with inciting mutiny.

It marked one of two major turning points in the twentieth century, heralding a period of full employment and comprehensive welfare provision that was only brought to an end by the second turning point: the election of Margaret Thatcher to government in 1979. During the war the government struck a contract with the people: work hard in return for a guaranteed job, a living wage and care in times of need. This bargain evolved because the demand for munitions and men created full employment in Britain for the first time, and the workers themselves used this to strengthen their collective bargaining power. But to call the Second World War ‘the people’s war’ does not mean that Britain became classless. The government sought to win the war by demanding ever greater sacrifice and effort from the workers in the factories and from ordinary troops. Only when the crisis absolutely demanded it did they oblige middle- and upper-class people to share in some of these sacrifices. Most politicians had little interest in making Britain a more equal society.

But Bevin argued that conscription into the factories, the illegality of strike action, long hours and no holidays with pay would only increase productivity if trade unions were granted a central role in Britain’s industrial life, and workers’ welfare was prioritized. He began in May 1940 by cutting working hours in Royal Ordnance Factories, increasing the number of workplace canteens, building workers’ hostels and improving the medical services available to factory workers. Bevin professed himself determined to ensure that ‘no industry … lack trade agreement’ by the end of the war; by which he meant that every industry must institute collective bargaining between employers and trade unions, thereby granting the latter a new and permanent form of power.11 Workers needed to feel they had a vested interest in what they were doing, otherwise they wouldn’t be motivated to work at the rate the war effort required of them. Bevin won his case because, as the historian Keith Middlemas points out, ‘labour rather than machinery or capital had become the scarcest and most prized industrial commodity.’12 In other words, the war effort depended on workers – lots of them, working as hard as they possibly could.


Battling Eight Giants: Basic Income Now by Guy Standing

basic income, Bernie Sanders, centre right, collective bargaining, decarbonisation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, full employment, future of work, Gini coefficient, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), job automation, labour market flexibility, Lao Tzu, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Martin Wolf, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, open economy, pension reform, precariat, quantitative easing, rent control, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, universal basic income, Y Combinator

As it is, the welfare state has been made more fragile and ‘residual’ in character as successive governments have accelerated the trends to comprehensive means-testing, behavioural conditionality and workfare. None of the funding methods envisaged for basic income would mean less money for public services. (7) Basic income would weaken unions and collective bargaining. Some trade unionists have argued that, if workers had a basic income, they would not join unions and would be less inclined to push for higher wages. The opposite is the case. It would encourage workers to back collective bargaining for higher wages, because having basic income security would make them less fearful of retribution. A basic income would be a boon to unionism. (8) A basic income would subsidize low wages. Although a basic income could encourage some employers to offer lower wages, it would also strengthen the worker’s bargaining position.

Yet today in Britain, of the more than 14 million people classified as living in poverty, 8 million or 58% have someone in Slaying Giants with Basic Income 11 the household in employment, up from 37% in 1995.10 Some 2.8 million people are living in poverty despite having all adults in their household employed full-time.11 Nearly three quarters of children in poverty have one or both parents in jobs, compared with about half in the 1990s. The fact is that a growing number of jobs do not enable people to escape from income poverty. Reforms in labour standards, minimum wages and collective bargaining could moderate this, but the pattern is likely to persist. Britain is not alone in this trend, but it has been among the worst.12 It is highly unlikely that, despite all these trends, there has been no increase in overall inequality. And it is worth highlighting some simple flaws in the statistics on which claims that there has been no such increase are based. Collected by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in the form of the Family Resources Survey of households, these data have significant limitations.


pages: 463 words: 105,197

Radical Markets: Uprooting Capitalism and Democracy for a Just Society by Eric Posner, E. Weyl

3D printing, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, anti-communist, augmented reality, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, business process, buy and hold, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collective bargaining, commoditize, Corn Laws, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, endowment effect, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ethereum, feminist movement, financial deregulation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, George Akerlof, global supply chain, guest worker program, hydraulic fracturing, Hyperloop, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, index fund, informal economy, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Jaron Lanier, Jean Tirole, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, Landlord’s Game, liberal capitalism, low skilled workers, Lyft, market bubble, market design, market friction, market fundamentalism, mass immigration, negative equity, Network effects, obamacare, offshore financial centre, open borders, Pareto efficiency, passive investing, patent troll, Paul Samuelson, performance metric, plutocrats, Plutocrats, pre–internet, random walk, randomized controlled trial, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Rory Sutherland, Second Machine Age, second-price auction, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, special economic zone, spectrum auction, speech recognition, statistical model, stem cell, telepresence, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Future of Employment, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, urban planning, Vanguard fund, women in the workforce, Zipcar

Marx argued that these labor practices created what his collaborator Friedrich Engels called a “reserve army of the labor” (that is, a class of unemployed) whose even more squalid condition would persuade workers to do anything to maintain their jobs.41 As economist John Roemer showed, Marx’s conclusions are extremely unlikely to prevail if employers compete for workers.42 However, they are exactly what one would anticipate in a world where capitalists conspired with each other, or had sufficient unilateral power, to hold down wages. Beatrice and Sydney Webb, a dynamic pair of late nineteenth-century British Radicals, advocated collective bargaining by workers, arguing that it would make production more efficient by raising wages above the levels that drove workers out of the labor force.43 John Kenneth Galbraith, the mid-twentieth-century American economist we met in chapter 2, hailed unions as a necessary form of “countervailing power” required to balance the power of monopsonists.44 This view has been partly vindicated by the research of subsequent economists.

Allen shows that prior to the emergence of unions, British wages during the early process of industrialization hardly advanced at all despite improvements in technology.45 Once unions managed to counter the monopsony power of British industrialists, not only did wages quickly increase, but the pace of overall productivity radically accelerated. Economists David Autor, Daron Acemoglu, and Suresh Naidu believe that the breaking of monopsony power through labor unions, government labor regulation, minimum wages, and other reforms was critical to the further acceleration of productivity.46 Beyond their role in collective bargaining, unions served other functions that helped support the “Fordist” mode of assembly line–based production that prevailed in the twentieth century: they screened and guaranteed the quality of the work produced by their workers and helped them learn the skills required by a rapidly changing work environment. To be sure, many other things were happening at the same time, making it difficult to trace clear lines of historical causation.

An individual data worker lacks bargaining power, so she cannot credibly threaten to withdraw her data from Facebook or Google unless she receives a fair reward. Furthermore, to realize the gains from data as labor, data workers will need some organization to vet them, ensure they provide quality data, and help them navigate the complexities of digital systems without overburdening their time. These triple roles, of collective bargaining, quality certification, and career development, are exactly the roles unions played during the Industrial Age. It may be time for “data workers of the world (to) unite” into a “data labor movement.”47 A striking feature of the data labor market is that it is an international market, one that is almost completely unaffected by borders and government regulation. Once people awaken to their role as data laborers—obtain a “class consciousness,” if you will—organizations (sort of like unions) may emerge to supply data laborers with the means to engage in collective action.


pages: 268 words: 75,490

The Knowledge Economy by Roberto Mangabeira Unger

additive manufacturing, balance sheet recession, business cycle, collective bargaining, commoditize, deindustrialization, disruptive innovation, first-past-the-post, full employment, global value chain, information asymmetry, knowledge economy, market fundamentalism, means of production, Paul Samuelson, savings glut, secular stagnation, side project, total factor productivity, transaction costs, union organizing, wealth creators

A way of empowering or disempowering labor in its relation to capital is secure if it has a basis in the most advanced practice of production. The approaches to organizing and representing labor that prevailed in the course of the twentieth century enjoyed such a foundation. The predominant arrangement for organizing and representing labor in the rich North Atlantic world and its outposts was the contractualist or collective bargaining labor-law regime: collective bargaining was designed to shore up the reality of contract in the unequal setting of the employment relation thanks to the “countervailing power” with which it endowed organized labor. In Latin America, an alternative, corporatist labor law emerged: workers (in the formal, legal economy that often accounted for half or less of the labor force) were automatically unionized according to their sector, under the tutelage of the ministry of labor.

The repetitious character of work, mimicking the operations of rigid machines, leaves the specialized implementers of productive tasks little occasion to redefine the plan that they are charged with executing. An implicit term of the employment contract—the contractual form of wage labor—is that all residual discretion to direct the process of production is reserved to managers appointed by owners, within the restraints of law and collective bargaining. In the established arrangements of the market economy, the central legal devices organizing decentralized access to productive resources and opportunities are the unified property right (a legal invention of the nineteenth century) and its counterpart in contract law, the bilateral executory promise—an arm’s-length deal, fully specifying the terms of a bargain that is exhausted in a single performance.

Index administrative Fordism, 86–87, 110, 185, 187 agency, 8, 145 enhancement of, 188, 214 agriculture market and, 210–11 mass production and, 87–88 scientific, 6, 53, 88, 163 transferring resources to industry from, 12, 15, 85–86, 161, 219 in US, 88, 209–10 Alphabet (company), 59 antitrust law, 66–67 artificial intelligence, 2, 21, 41, 42, 94, 223 belated Fordism, 15, 165, 166–67 Bentham, Jeremy, 229, 273 bilateral executory contract, 48, 102, 222, 245 Brazil, 164–70 entrepreneurial impulse in, 166, 168–69 industry in, 164–66 Britain, 32, 151, 210–11 capital access to, 119, 123, 125, 184 human, 160 labor’s relations with, 63–64, 184–86, 221, 224–25 providers and takers of, 221 social, 49–51, 105 venture, 119–20, 194 capital appreciation, 58 capitalism inclusive knowledge economy and, 236–37 Marx on, 32, 172, 210, 237, 266, 268 moral presuppositions of, 47–48 no in-built structure of, 179–80, 228, 236 “varieties of,” 179, 228 See also market economy and order China, 55, 141, 162, 199 Christensen, Clayton, 216 civil society, 110, 134 government and, 87, 157, 187 classical economics. See economics – classical closed-list thesis, 118, 235 coercion, 266–68 cognitive psychology, 42 collective bargaining, 64, 102 collective dictatorship, 140–41 collective difference, 148–49 combined and uneven development, 90, 137, 172, 186 comparative advantage doctrine, 253 compensatory and corrective redistribution demand constraints and, 205–8 market economy and, 73–74 progressive taxation, 73, 74, 76, 78–80, 182, 205, 208 public spending, 205, 207–8 social entitlements and transfers, 64, 73–75, 76, 248 tax-and-transfer, 13, 64, 78, 207, 209 competition cooperation and, 49, 67, 103, 133–34 between large and small firms, 59–60 market, 253–56 competitive selection, 253–56 consumption growth of, 53 individual desire and, 239, 280 mass, 176, 204–5 surplus over current, 9, 32, 266, 278 taxes on, 75, 77–78, 79, 208 contract and property law, 48, 102, 109, 124 need for new approach to, 113–14, 262 cooperation capability for, 104–8, 109–10 competition and, 49, 67, 103, 133–34 education and, 95, 110 as form of free labor, 45, 69, 185–86, 222 imagination and, 81, 93 independent role of, 50–51 innovation and, 47, 48–50, 93, 106–7, 109–11 between workers and owners, 115 cooperative regime, 105, 107–8, 112 decentralized initiative/access and, 105–6, 115 raising level of, 104–7, 214 technical division of labor and, 20–21, 35–36 copyright, 127–28, 129, 130, 131, 132 corporatism, 65, 165, 176, 204 countercylical management, 176, 231, 247, 260 Creative Commons license, 132 data trading, 128, 129–30 debt, 123, 176, 199 demand expansion and, 193, 203–5 decentralization coordinated production plan and, 23 of economic activity, 22, 106, 115, 186, 222 inclusive knowledge economy and, 50, 255–56 unified property right and, 102, 125, 186, 237 demand constraints and expansion, 13, 213, 209 broadening access, 13, 195–96, 200–201, 203–7, 209, 213, 257–58 compensatory redistribution and, 205–7 debt and, 203–5 Keynes on, 200–201, 257–58 See also supply-demand relationship democracy devolution principle in, 152–55 direct, 143, 156, 157 economy and, 143–44, 187 education and, 97–98 engagement principle and, 155–58 group difference and, 146–49 impasse resolution and, 150–52 institutional forms of, 143, 144–45 politics and, 77, 97, 156, 279 weak, 141–42, 143, 146, 156, 173 desire, human, 280–81 developing countries, 164–70 inclusive vanguardism in, 167, 171–72 industrialization and, 159–60, 161, 162–63 international division of labor and, 161, 162–63 development economics, classical on agriculture-to-industry transfer, 12, 15, 85–86, 161 broken formula of, 163–64, 171, 212, 219–20 on education and institutions, 160–61 on industrialization, 159–60, 161, 167–68 on productivity, 85–86, 161, 212 devolution, 152–55 digital technology, 9, 19, 57 diminishing marginal returns knowledge economy’s potential to relax or reverse, 25–26, 28–29, 30, 31, 33, 130, 196, 213, 221, 279 persistence of, 61, 283 productivity and, 25, 28–29, 191 returns to scale and, 25–26 disaggregation of property, 126–27, 222 disequilibrium Keynesianism on, 201, 259–60 perpetual, 202–3 disruptive innovation, 216–19 distancing, 36–37 diversity group difference and, 146–49 knowledge economy and, 255–56 as task, 254–55 division of labor character of work and, 101–2, 283 international, 55–56, 161, 162–63, 167, 168 technical, 20–21, 23, 35–36, 37–39, 84, 94, 223–24 Durkheim, Émile, 105 economic flexibility economic security and, 68–69, 109, 178 social protection and, 77, 112, 177, 181 economic planning, 20, 23, 103, 161 economics deficiencies of main line of, 231–32 empirical research and, 240–43 history of, 233–38 ideas from within and without in, 270–73 imperative of structural vision in, 227–33 role of mathematics in, 273, 274–75 as social theory, 232, 263, 264, 268, 271, 274 See also development economics; fundamentalist economics; marginalist economics; post-marginalist economics economics – classical, 262–70 on capitalism as historical stage, 268–70 causal theories and explanations of, 263–65 on coercion, 267–68 small business and, 11, 12 Smith and, 232, 263, 271 value theory in, 265–66 economic security, 111–13 flexibility and, 68–69, 109, 178 labor and, 49, 67–68, 109 Edgeworth, Francis, 241, 273 Mathematical Psychics, 229 education cooperation and, 95, 110 democracy and, 97–98 depth of, 95 development economics on, 160 dialectical approach to, 96–97 effect on inequality of, 13–14 experimentalist impulse and, 138 imagination and, 95 inclusive knowledge economy requirements for, 50, 82, 93–99, 186 industrial mass production’s requirements in, 85 institutional requirements of, 99 method and subject matter of, 96 technical, 93–94 empiricism, 240–43 empowerment, 75, 178, 184, 224 of difference, 146, 149, 150, 152, 153, 157 freedom/democracy and, 145, 286 engagement principle, 155–58 entrepreneurial impulse, 126, 166, 168–69 equivocating economics, 244, 249–50 exchange-production relationship, 227, 251–52 experimentalism as impulse, 136, 138–40 inclusive knowledge economy and, 138, 186–87 scientific, 30–31 federalism, 153–54 finance, 184, 193–94 financial derivatives, 126 firms government and, 67, 119–20, 121–24, 130–31, 176 knowledge economy and, 7, 27, 224 relations among, 124 small businesses, 11–12, 54–55, 77, 165, 170 supply/demand and, 215–19 flexsecurity, 67–68, 112 Ford, Henry, 16, 39, 196 Fordism administrative, 86–87, 110, 185, 187 belated, 15, 165, 166–67 See also industrial mass production fragmentary theory, 271–72, 273, 276 France, 152, 154, 211 freedom constraint and, 283–84 empowerment and, 286 imagination and, 287 free labor, 45, 69, 185–86, 222–23, 282, 286 frozen fighting, 234 fundamentalist economics, 244, 245–47 Germany, 89, 93 government civil society and, 87, 157, 187 firms and, 67, 119–20, 121–24, 130–31, 176 monetary policies of, 181, 203–4, 247–48, 249, 260 private venture capital and, 119 relations between central and local, 153–54 rewards for innovation by, 132–33, 134 government regulation, 53–54, 177, 181, 182 arms-length model of, 121–22 group difference, 146–49 Hansen, Alvin, 8, 9 Harrington, James, 105 Hayek, Friedrich, 245 human capital, 160 hyper-insular vanguardism developing countries and, 162 inequality and, 72 labor and, 63, 65–66 pseudo-vanguardism and, 59–60 imagination classical economics’ underestimation of, 266–68 cooperation and, 81, 93 education and, 95 freedom and, 287 institutional, 155, 243–50, 254, 264–65 as knowledge economy requirement, 37, 39–40, 93, 95, 186, 286–87 mind as, 36–37, 43, 81, 99–100, 186–87, 287 negative capability and, 43–44 production and, 37, 39, 40, 286–87 impasse resolution, 150–52 inclusive vanguardism.


pages: 497 words: 143,175

Pivotal Decade: How the United States Traded Factories for Finance in the Seventies by Judith Stein

"Robert Solow", 1960s counterculture, activist lawyer, affirmative action, airline deregulation, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, centre right, collective bargaining, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, desegregation, energy security, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, feminist movement, financial deregulation, floating exchange rates, full employment, Gunnar Myrdal, income inequality, income per capita, intermodal, invisible hand, knowledge worker, laissez-faire capitalism, liberal capitalism, Long Term Capital Management, manufacturing employment, market bubble, Martin Wolf, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, open economy, Paul Samuelson, payday loans, post-industrial society, post-oil, price mechanism, price stability, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, reserve currency, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Simon Kuznets, strikebreaker, trade liberalization, union organizing, urban planning, urban renewal, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, working poor, Yom Kippur War

Only William Miller, who had replaced Blumenthal as secretary of the treasury, supported the agreement and helped untie the final knots.62 Unlike most of Carter’s advisers, Miller came from industry, not the academy, and so understood the give and take of collective bargaining. In the end, Carter’s political advisers convinced him that the reelection in 1980 rode on the agreement with labor.63 The AFL-CIO would fill five of the fifteen seats on the new Pay Advisory Committee. Another five seats would go to business, and the remaining five would represent the general public. One of the public representatives was John Dunlop, the ultimate collective bargainer.64 The committee would advise the CWPS on pay standards. Whether the council was required to adopt the suggestions was deliberately left fuzzy. Kahn claimed that “their power is only to recommend.”

A Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany, Blumenthal was the kind of Democratic businessman who believed that you could do well by doing good. Balancing Blumenthal was Secretary of Labor F. Ray Marshall, another PhD in economics. AFL-CIO chief George Meany had urged Carter to appoint John Dunlop, the Harvard labor economist who had been President Ford’s secretary of labor. Dunlop had resigned after Ford vetoed labor reform legislation that he had pledged to sign. Believing that robust collective bargaining was the essence of industrial democracy, Dunlop was the consummate negotiator. But representatives of blacks and women did not believe he was committed enough to airmative action, which would have made him a problematic pick for Carter.3 Marshall, whose southern origins added to his appeal, seemed better on airmative action because he had written about racial discrimination and manpower policy.

Blacks recalled that these unions were often resistant to integrating their ranks. The second bill aimed to empower the powerless, a more politically appealing group, particularly southern workers. The South was the bastion of anti-unionism. The journalist Harry Golden declared that the people of Charlotte, North Carolina, would “elect Cassius Clay mayor if he would promise no unions and no collective bargaining.”21 Aggressive anti-union tactics and corporate violations of the labor law were a major reason why unions that had won 60 percent of representation elections, were winning only 46 percent now. The proposed reform would make it easier for workers to unionize by amending the National Labor Relations Act of 1935 (better known as the Wagner Act, after its architect, Senator Robert Wagner of New York).


pages: 474 words: 120,801

The End of Power: From Boardrooms to Battlefields and Churches to States, Why Being in Charge Isn’t What It Used to Be by Moises Naim

additive manufacturing, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, bilateral investment treaty, business cycle, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, corporate governance, creative destruction, crony capitalism, deskilling, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, don't be evil, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, intangible asset, intermodal, invisible hand, job-hopping, Joseph Schumpeter, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, liberation theology, Martin Wolf, mega-rich, megacity, Naomi Klein, Nate Silver, new economy, Northern Rock, Occupy movement, open borders, open economy, Peace of Westphalia, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price mechanism, price stability, private military company, profit maximization, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, The Nature of the Firm, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, trade route, transaction costs, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, World Values Survey, zero-sum game

But as much as unions get credit for major breakthroughs in working life, at least in rich countries (“the folks who brought you the weekend,” as the American sticker slogan says), the story of the great trade unions for several decades now has been one of decline. The numbers vary, and not every comparison is valid given the differences in structures from country to country. Still, both union density (the percentage of workers who are members of unions) and bargaining coverage (the percentage of workers covered by a collective bargaining agreement, whether they themselves are union members or not) have been declining in most OECD countries, in some cases steeply. In the United States, union density has plummeted from 36 percent after World War II to just 12 percent today. In the private sector, the drop has been even sharper, from about one-third half a century ago to less than 8 percent now. Union density in the OECD countries varies from 5.8 percent in Turkey to 68.3 percent in Sweden (according to 2008 data), but in almost every case the numbers have been at best stagnant, and more often declining, in a trend that has held in much of Europe for several decades.

Fast-forward three decades, to a protest held at the National Mall in 2010, and the labor unions could pull together only a small fraction of that number, with turnout lower than at Glenn Beck’s Tea Party rally five weeks earlier.22 And in 2012 another important defeat confirmed the waning power of the US labor movement as, despite a massive effort, unions failed to win a recall election against Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin. The causes of this general decline include familiar factors: globalization and technological innovation have made it easier for employers to move jobs to other countries or to eliminate them altogether, changing the balance of power in favor of employers. Though the point of collective bargaining might have been precisely to protect workers from this situation, the forces that gathered in favor of flexible and global labor markets, often supported by governments ideologically committed to market-oriented reforms, usually proved too strong. Moreover, unionization historically thrived in industries and occupations that rely on unskilled labor, which is easier to organize. As automation replaced unskilled laborers in various heavy industries, or those jobs went overseas where unskilled labor was less costly, unions needed to move into new sectors such as services that needed fresh organizing.

Many of its members were also recent immigrants, beneficiaries of the trends in global mobility that were reshaping markets and workplaces. And like their predecessors in factories and warehouses, all of them were driven by an aspiration to better themselves and achieve the gains that first lured them to the United States. Led by Andy Stern, recognized as an innovator not just in American labor but also in politics and social mobilization,23 the union secured major victories with collective bargaining deals for some of the most vulnerable workers in the United States, such as janitors and child-care workers, many of whom work multiple part-time jobs and do not speak good English.24 Historically, these groups had been neglected by a union movement focused on factories and traditional industries. To organize them required not just a bright idea on the part of Stern and his team but also new tools, including alliances outside the labor movement with community and immigrant groups, and a deeper involvement in elections than simply raising money and turning out the vote on election day for local Democratic Party candidates.


pages: 209 words: 89,619

The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class by Guy Standing

8-hour work day, banking crisis, barriers to entry, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, call centre, Cass Sunstein, centre right, collective bargaining, corporate governance, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, deskilling, fear of failure, full employment, hiring and firing, Honoré de Balzac, housing crisis, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, land reform, libertarian paternalism, low skilled workers, lump of labour, marginal employment, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, means of production, mini-job, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, nudge unit, old age dependency ratio, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pensions crisis, placebo effect, post-industrial society, precariat, presumed consent, quantitative easing, remote working, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, science of happiness, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Spirit Level, Tobin tax, transaction costs, universal basic income, unpaid internship, winner-take-all economy, working poor, working-age population, young professional

How can people construct a career and build an occupational profile when they can be moved at short notice or when the next rungs on an occupational ladder are suddenly outsourced? A related trend is the spread of individual contracts, as part of the ‘contractualisation’ of life. In industrial society, the norm was a collective contract, set by collective bargaining, perhaps extended to other firms in a sector. But as unions and collective bargaining have shrunk, individualised contracts have grown. For a brief time, fewer workers were covered by any contracts, but the trend to individual contracts is strengthening. They allow firms to provide different treatments, degrees of security and status, so as to channel some workers into the salariat, some into stable jobs, some into a precariat status, increasing divisions and hierarchies.

These reforms undoubtedly contributed to the growth of the Japanese precariat. In Italy, the precariat was enlarged by the Treu law of 1997, which introduced temporary contracts, and by the 2003 Biagi law, which allowed private recruitment agencies. One country after another has acknowledged the pressure of globalisation in extending temporary labour. It has accompanied what goes under the clumsy term of ‘triangulation’. Labour law and collective bargaining were constructed on the basis of direct relationships between employers and employees. But who is responsible when a third party becomes an intermediary? Who is in control, the final employer or the intermediary? The blurring of boundaries of decision-making and responsibility adds to the precariousness. There is extensive case law to delight the minds of lawyers. But temporaries themselves know only that they report to two masters.

A POLITICS OF PARADISE 165 Increasingly, people doing work are not employees, and it is artificial to define employees in complex ways just to enable them to have labour-based entitlements. Work rights should include rules on acceptable practice between workers and within occupational communities as well as between ‘labour’ and ‘capital’. The precariat is at a disadvantage in these respects; a regime of ‘collaborative bargaining’ to give it Voice is required to complement regimes of collective bargaining between representatives of employers and employees, an issue to which we will return. The precariat should also demand construction of an international workrights regime, beginning with an overhaul of the International Labour Organisation, a bastion of labourism. How this could be done is dealt with elsewhere (Standing, 2010). Without a proper global body, the Voice of the precariat will be muted or ignored.


pages: 375 words: 88,306

The Sharing Economy: The End of Employment and the Rise of Crowd-Based Capitalism by Arun Sundararajan

additive manufacturing, Airbnb, AltaVista, Amazon Mechanical Turk, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, Burning Man, call centre, collaborative consumption, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate social responsibility, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, distributed ledger, employer provided health coverage, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, future of work, George Akerlof, gig economy, housing crisis, Howard Rheingold, information asymmetry, Internet of things, inventory management, invisible hand, job automation, job-hopping, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kula ring, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, megacity, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, moral panic, Network effects, new economy, Oculus Rift, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, peer-to-peer model, peer-to-peer rental, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, recommendation engine, regulatory arbitrage, rent control, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Ross Ulbricht, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, smart contracts, Snapchat, social software, supply-chain management, TaskRabbit, The Nature of the Firm, total factor productivity, transaction costs, transportation-network company, two-sided market, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, Zipcar

The IRC does not use “business judgment” as a term, but does ask if the worker’s services are available to the market directly. d. The Supreme Court draws its multi-factor test from Nationwide Mutual Ins. Co. v. Darden, 503 U.S. 318 (1992). Third, the true underlying issue isn’t really about a desire among workers for full-time employment, but rather about a desire to obtain the benefits currently and exclusively associated with that status. As Fox notes, since the 1944 ruling—which for collective bargaining purposes categorized the newsboys as employees—workers classified as employees “now enjoy a wide variety of federal, state and local protections, from minimum-wage and overtime laws to unemployment insurance, that aren’t available to independent contractors.”3 This is an important distinction for a number of reasons, most saliently because the specter of future litigation may actually be preventing workers from getting benefits funded by the platforms.

Many Uber and Lyft drivers, Handy providers, and TaskRabbit taskers make a significant percentage of their living through the platforms, and the fraction of the world’s workforce that fits this description will grow in the coming years. Although full-time employees can pool their individual bargaining power and take collective action, protected by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), the NLRA does not protect independent contractors, and current antitrust law may penalize them for doing so, a point Elizabeth Kennedy highlights using the example of independent physicians in her 2005 paper on collective bargaining for dependent contractors.6 Further, as Ai-Jen Poo, a 2015 MacArthur Foundation Fellow, has highlighted for decades, the labor laws governing domestic workers are unfairly biased against workers relative to labor laws that cover other professions.7 Fifth, the current constraints of labor law will not allow a market-based solution to easily emerge. As I have already pointed out, we do not have space under the current structure to see the extent to which benefits and other protections of the platforms will naturally provide a flexible and on-demand workforce.

The ambiguity, the paradox, of their position is thus reflected in the term used to identify them.11 Early discussions of a “third way” for worker classification in the sharing economy came from Wilma Liebman, the chair of the United States NLRB in the first Obama administration,12 and from Denise Cheng of MIT in her 2015 Roosevelt Institute policy paper.13 The more detailed Brookings Institute “independent worker” proposal from Harris and Krueger in December 2015 highlights a number of legal reforms that would need to accompany such a definition. Salient among them are the need to alter antitrust law to allow independent workers to collectively bargain (as I discussed earlier); the need to make entities that use labor provided from independent workers exempt from offering minimum wage, overtime, and other hours-of-work-based worker protections; the need to allow platforms to provide workers-compensation insurance without triggering employee categorization; and the need to allow non-employer platforms (or what they call “intermediaries”) to withhold taxes.


pages: 585 words: 165,304

Trust: The Social Virtue and the Creation of Prosperity by Francis Fukuyama

barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blue-collar work, business climate, business cycle, capital controls, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate raider, creative destruction, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, double entry bookkeeping, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, George Gilder, glass ceiling, global village, Gunnar Myrdal, hiring and firing, industrial robot, Jane Jacobs, job satisfaction, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, land reform, liberal capitalism, liberation theology, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, mittelstand, price mechanism, profit maximization, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Ronald Coase, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Nature of the Firm, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, transfer pricing, traveling salesman, union organizing

It was Bismarck, after all, who implemented Europe’s first social security system in the 1880s (albeit as the counterpart to his antisocialist legislation that included a ban on the SPD).16 The Sozialmarktwirtschaft actually had its origins in the Weimar period in the 1920s, when various forms of labor legislation, including the right of free collective bargaining and workers’ councils, were introduced.17 After the tumultuous 1930s and 1940s, when the Nazis banned independent trade unions and set up their own “yellow” corporatist organizations, postwar German leaders shared a broad consensus that a new, more cooperative system needed to be established. Major elements of the Sozialmarktwirtschaft were Mitbestimmung, or codetermination, a system under which labor representatives sat on boards of the companies they worked for, with access to corporate information and a real, if limited, participation in governance; a network of workers’ councils for managing problems and conflicts on an enterprise level; the system of collective bargaining between the industry associations and the labor unions, by which wages, hours, benefits, and the like are set on a sector- or industry-wide basis;18 and finally, the extensive social welfare legislation that stipulates health benefits, working conditions, hours, job security, and the like.

These include the Federal Association of German Employers, the Federal Association of German Industry, and various other groups connected with specific industrial sectors.13 These trade associations do not have ready counterparts outside Central Europe. Their activities and responsibilities are far broader than those of political lobbying associations like the American Chamber of Commerce or the National Association of Manufacturers. The German Verbände act as the counterparts of the trade unions during collective bargaining negotiations, by which wages, benefits, and work conditions are set on an industry-wide basis; they are actively involved in setting standards for training and product quality; and they engage in long-range planning for the strategic future of particular industrial sectors. The trade associations played a key role in initiating negotiations leading to the Investment Aid Act of 1952, for example, by which the relatively well-off sectors of German industry were taxed in order to subsidize certain bottleneck sectors like coal, steel, electricity, and railways.14 The third set of communitarian economic institutions consists of the complex of labor-management relations that were codified as part of Ludwig Erhardt’s postwar Sozialmarktwirtschaft, or social market economy.

They are based instead on informal moral obligation and would not be enforceable in a court of law. In Germany, by contrast, virtually all of the elements of the Sozialmarktwirtschaft are backed by legislation that spells out, often in great detail, the terms of the relationship. Even communal institutions that are deeply embedded in and dependent on the intermediate organizations of German civil society, such as codetermination and collective bargaining, came into being as the result of a top-down political process led by the state. Japan’s communal institutions, on the other hand, just seemed to jell out of civil society without the benefit of an explicit political decision. Although it is hard to argue that the Japanese economy is less heavily regulated than its German counterpart, much of the communal interaction in Japan is done off the books, so to speak.


pages: 385 words: 133,839

The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World's Favorite Soft Drink by Michael Blanding

carbon footprint, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate social responsibility, Exxon Valdez, Gordon Gekko, Internet Archive, laissez-faire capitalism, market design, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, New Journalism, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, Ralph Nader, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, union organizing, Upton Sinclair

Two of its leaders had already been killed by the time Isidro Gil was named secretary-general and put in charge of renegotiating the workers’ contract with the bottling company. On November 18, 1996, the union submitted its final proposal for a new contract, demanding increased pay and bene­ fits, along with protection from firing and new security measures to keep union leadership safe from violence. The Coke plant’s local managers and its Florida-based owners had until December 5 to respond to the collective bargaining proposal. As he stood at the gate that morning, Gil was mentally preparing for the meeting that day, not knowing it would never take place. As he opened the gate to let out the delivery truck, he stepped back behind the gatehouse. The truck rumbled past, its bright red Coke logo shining in the morning light. Before Gil could push the metal frame closed, the visitor walked right through the gate behind it.

In 2002, González’s daughter, then “SYRUP IN THE VEINS” 197 twelve, answered the phone to a voice telling her that her “son-of-a-bitch terrorist father” had to give them 20 million pesos ($10,000) or they would kill his daughter. His wife left soon afterward. “She would say, ‘You ruined my life, my family, my daughters.’” González halts again, choking back tears. “Everyone starts to distrust you, even the neighbors.” As the tears flow, so do the words. “They want to destroy the union and because of that the collective bargaining gets worse, and the conditions for the workers get worse. I’m not a guerrilla member, I’m not a paramilitary member. I just have convictions that the country needs to change.” He suddenly explodes in a sardonic laugh. “You get so fucking pissed off by your helplessness that you want to put a bomb in the place and blow it up. You get in such an extreme psychological state you want to be a suicide bomber and just finish it off.”

By 2009, according to SINALTRAINAL researcher Carlos Olaya, that number was 350. Much of the decline has been due to outsourcing of the workforce to contract or temporary workers, he says; from 10,000 full-time workers in 1993, the company now employs only 2,000. Most of the other workers are so-called cooperative workers who are responsible for their own health insurance and other benefits, and of course excluded from collective bargaining. 1 98 THE COKE MACHINE Even the direct workers have seen wages decline from a high of $800 a month to near $500. For nonunionized workers, wages are even worse— only $150 a month. In addition, workers have lost overtime and holiday bonuses. All of the consolidation and downsizing, however, has been tre­ mendously successful for the company; Coca-Cola now controls 60 per­ cent of the nonalcoholic beverages market in the country; with the acquisition of Panamco by Coca-Cola FEMSA in 2003, the country has been one of the new anchor bottlers’ primary growth markets.


pages: 364 words: 99,613

Servant Economy: Where America's Elite Is Sending the Middle Class by Jeff Faux

back-to-the-land, Bernie Sanders, Black Swan, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, centre right, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Brooks, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, disruptive innovation, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, full employment, hiring and firing, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, informal economy, invisible hand, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Kickstarter, lake wobegon effect, Long Term Capital Management, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, McMansion, medical malpractice, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Naomi Klein, new economy, oil shock, old-boy network, Paul Samuelson, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price mechanism, price stability, private military company, Ralph Nader, reserve currency, rising living standards, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, South China Sea, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, trade route, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, War on Poverty, We are the 99%, working poor, Yogi Berra, Yom Kippur War

Prosperity began to be seen as being generated not just by the exceptionally talented manager, insightful investor, or genius inventor. It is the result of the interaction of all the actors in the economic drama—the majority of who are people of ordinary talent, connections, perseverance, and/or luck. All have their part to play as workers and consumers, and therefore all have a claim on the benefits of growth. Economic security—pooling risks through social insurance, subsidizing higher education, and collective bargaining—is as important as the freedom to buy low and sell high. By providing a cushion for ordinary workers, the innovations of full employment, rising wages, unions, and government-sponsored safety nets also provided a protective cushion for the American capitalist class. After all, the implication of Keynes’s proposition was that what is good for General Motors is good for America—even though the businessmen had to also accept its corollary that what is good for the United Auto Workers is good for General Motors.

The lesson was not lost; when Nixon finally became president, he famously quipped, “We are all Keynesians.”17. Keynesian economics validated the New Deal, which framed the social contract between U.S. capital and labor for approximately fifty years. The leaders of the U.S. labor movement abandoned any dream of creating a socialist future in exchange for business acceptance of social insurance programs and collective bargaining rights. Social Security guaranteed a minimal level of income for the elderly regardless of how they had fared in the market. Workers’ compensation buffered employees from the economic consequences of injury on the job, and unemployment insurance provided a way to ride out cyclical bouts of unemployment. The expansion of trade unions gave workers—not just unionized workers, but all workers—more bargaining power, spreading the benefits of rising labor productivity much more widely than ever before.

Since the consolidation of the New Deal social contract at the end of World War II, employers had generally not attempted to permanently replace striking workers. In effect, if workers can be fired for striking, then they do not have the right to strike; they simply have the right to quit. Reagan’s act signaled that the government would sanction a return to the pre–New Deal hard-line war against organized labor. Employers responded eagerly by stiffening resistance across the collective bargaining table, daring unions to strike, and creating sophisticated defenses against attempts to unionize. A new industry of consultants arose to run antiunion campaigns, teaching management how to threaten, bribe, and harass workers when union organizers showed up. Many of these tactics were illegal, but Reagan appointed antiunion hard-liners to the National Labor Relations Board, where they blocked, delayed, and denied complaints.


pages: 443 words: 98,113

The Corruption of Capitalism: Why Rentiers Thrive and Work Does Not Pay by Guy Standing

3D printing, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, basic income, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Bernie Sanders, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, bilateral investment treaty, Bonfire of the Vanities, Boris Johnson, Bretton Woods, business cycle, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, cashless society, central bank independence, centre right, Clayton Christensen, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, credit crunch, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, debt deflation, declining real wages, deindustrialization, disruptive innovation, Doha Development Round, Donald Trump, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, ending welfare as we know it, eurozone crisis, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Firefox, first-past-the-post, future of work, gig economy, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Growth in a Time of Debt, housing crisis, income inequality, information retrieval, intangible asset, invention of the steam engine, investor state dispute settlement, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, labour market flexibility, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, lump of labour, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market clearing, Martin Wolf, means of production, mini-job, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, Neil Kinnock, non-tariff barriers, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, nudge unit, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, open economy, openstreetmap, patent troll, payday loans, peer-to-peer lending, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, precariat, quantitative easing, remote working, rent control, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, Right to Buy, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Sam Altman, savings glut, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Simon Kuznets, sovereign wealth fund, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, structural adjustment programs, TaskRabbit, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, the payments system, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, Y Combinator, zero-sum game, Zipcar

Little was done to prevent them, even after the Asian financial crisis of 1997–98 and the related collapse of Long-Term Capital Management, a US hedge fund that boasted two Nobel Prize-winning neo-liberal economists on its board. There was no political will to challenge the might of financial capital. At the heart of neo-liberalism is a contradiction. While its proponents profess a belief in free ‘unregulated’ markets, they favour regulations to prevent collective bodies from operating in favour of social solidarity. That is why they want controls over unions, collective bargaining, professional associations and occupational guilds. When the interests of free markets and property clash, they favour the latter. Neo-liberalism is a convenient rationale for rentier capitalism. THE GREAT CONVERGENCE It is impossible to make sense of the Global Transformation without appreciating the role of China. With a population of 1.4 billion, it has experienced three decades of rapid economic growth, becoming the world’s de facto industrial workshop.

Alistair Darling, former Labour Chancellor, admitted as much when he wrote that tax credits ‘support many who will not benefit from the minimum wage’.22 Tax credits are a subsidy to capital, distort labour markets and hold down wages. Research suggests that employers gain a quarter to a third of their value through paying lower wages.23 The unions have erred in supporting them, since they are a poor substitute for collective bargaining and reduce the incentive for low-paid workers to join unions. They are also bad for productivity, since they result in an under-valuation of labour, reducing the pressure on employers to be efficient. They also encourage firms to use low-paid workers rather than higher-wage employees. By definition, tax credits raise the income of those receiving them, thereby helping them out of poverty.

Where taskers are contractors working primarily for one company and required to comply with its rules and standards, there is a case for calling them employees, as the California appeals court decided in the case of FedEx drivers. But any distinction between contractors and employees will be arbitrary. Instead of trying to shoehorn tasking into the dichotomous classification of contractor or employee, taskers should form a separate category. This is one reason for strengthening taskers’ collective bargaining capacities. Tasker associations should be set up, as separate entities or within occupational bodies. Certainly, the emergence of taskers will intensify friction between groups of workers; there is not and never has been a ‘unified working class’. The divergence of interests is why a ‘collaborative’ bargaining system is needed, for bargaining between complementary or substitute occupational groups, not just between employers and employees.8 On one side are employers, requesters and labour brokers; on the other, employees, taskers and freelancers.


pages: 417 words: 97,577

The Myth of Capitalism: Monopolies and the Death of Competition by Jonathan Tepper

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, air freight, Airbnb, airline deregulation, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, Bob Noyce, business cycle, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, computer age, corporate raider, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, diversification, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, family office, financial innovation, full employment, German hyperinflation, gig economy, Gini coefficient, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Google bus, Google Chrome, Gordon Gekko, income inequality, index fund, Innovator's Dilemma, intangible asset, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, late capitalism, London Interbank Offered Rate, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, means of production, merger arbitrage, Metcalfe's law, multi-sided market, mutually assured destruction, Nash equilibrium, Network effects, new economy, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, passive investing, patent troll, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, prediction markets, prisoner's dilemma, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, Sam Peltzman, secular stagnation, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, too big to fail, undersea cable, Vanguard fund, very high income, wikimedia commons, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, zero-sum game

Temporary work can be empowering when you have the luxury of choice, but it is disempowering when you can't negotiate wages or benefits. Most people think of companies such as Uber, with an estimated seven million drivers worldwide, when they think of part-time and contracted work. The company is constantly in the headlines, facing a barrage of lawsuits aimed at reclassifying drivers as employees, rather than contractors, and at providing full-time benefits, overtime pay, and collective bargaining. Uber is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to contract work. In many other industries, the trend to seek cheap, no-strings-attached employees also applies. Every day we see workers dressed in bright, colored uniforms with corporate logos; but the people who are valeting cars at a hotel, acting as concierge, and cleaning your room do not work for Hilton, instead they are contracted through a third party.

Once this happens, private actors wield their government-granted power to block potential competitors from entering “their” market.” With this increased bureaucracy, workers are left to navigate confusing legal processes alone. Unionization has collapsed while occupational licensing has grown exponentially (see Figure 4.9). While unions are imperfect and can, themselves, become powerful barriers to entry for people on the outside, workers have little to no collective bargaining power without them. Figure 4.9 The Great Suppression: Falling Unions and Increasing Licensing, 1950s–Today SOURCE: Taylor Mann, Pine Capital. Workers are now faced with pressure on all sides – governments that require excessive licensing to work, and corporates that require workers accept onerous employment terms. Those terms include: noncompete agreements, forced arbitration, stagnating wages, and burdensome occupational licensing.

Cartels set prices, limited production, and agreed to divide markets.28 Nazis had their reasons for preferring monopolies and cartels. The economist Arthur Schweitzer wrote about the power structure that existed between the Nazi party, large corporations and the generals in 1936. In his book Big Business and the Third Reich he wrote, within a few years of Hitler's accession, “middle-class socialism” had been defeated, collective bargaining had been banned, and unions had been outlawed. Unions were crushed as alternative centers of power. Large companies were favored over small businesses because, as Schweizer noted, “it is easier for the authorities to deal with a number of large companies than with innumerable small ones.”29 Consequently, the Nazi regime favored the process of monopolistic concentration, reinforcing the power of industrial magnates and weakening the position of the middle and working classes.30 The Nazis wanted almost all industries to become cartels.


pages: 330 words: 99,044

Reimagining Capitalism in a World on Fire by Rebecca Henderson

Airbnb, asset allocation, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, business climate, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, commoditize, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, crony capitalism, dark matter, decarbonisation, disruptive innovation, double entry bookkeeping, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, family office, fixed income, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, greed is good, Hans Rosling, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, index fund, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), joint-stock company, Kickstarter, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, mittelstand, Mont Pelerin Society, Nelson Mandela, passive investing, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, profit maximization, race to the bottom, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Second Machine Age, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, sovereign wealth fund, Steven Pinker, stocks for the long run, Tim Cook: Apple, total factor productivity, Toyota Production System, uber lyft, urban planning, Washington Consensus, working-age population, Zipcar

Stinnes had vast holdings in coal, iron, steel, shipping, newspapers, and banks; one analyst described him as the Warren Buffett of his time.62 Together with a number of other private sector leaders, he approached moderate union leaders with proposals for a new economic order. In November 1918, the two groups signed the Stinnes-Legien Agreement, which established the eight-hour workday, the recognition of labor unions, a right to establish works councils, and the adoption of sectoral collective bargaining.63 Stinnes also laid the foundation for a national system of employer representation. Talks between the major firms began in 1918 and were concluded in 1919 when employer representation was unified under the Reich Association of German Industry (RdI). The RdI was organized along industry rather than regional lines, a structure that tended to favor big business interests, and the new association allowed Stinnes and his allies to expand the influence of the Stinnes-Legien Agreement across a broad swath of additional firms.64 Between 1933 and 1945, fascism, economic and political turmoil, and the disaster of World War II led to the breakdown of these agreements as the Nazis dissolved both employers’ associations and unions.

The Federation of German industries (BDI) emerged as the largest employer association, focusing largely on economic advocacy, while the Federation of German Employers’ Association (BDA) was formed to manage labor relations. The Confederation of German Trade Unions (DGB) was founded as an umbrella organization to represent the trade unions. The three organizations worked together to revive the tradition of employer-labor relations and collective bargaining that had been established between the wars. All three organizations exist today.66 One of the most critical tasks of postwar reconstruction was the revival and standardization of the apprenticeship system. Prior to World War II, the system had not been standardized by either sector or region. There were different certification systems for different skills, and there was considerable variation in the type and quality of the training.

The DA was able to negotiate an end to the strike, and in 1898 the Danish Confederation of Trade Unions, or the LO, was founded with the active assistance and support of the DA. Two years later a massive three-month labor conflict known as the “Great Lockout” erupted in the steel industry. Together the DA and LO were able to negotiate a “September Compromise,” which established a national system of collective bargaining. In 1907 the state gave the DA the power to intervene in sectoral disputes, reinforcing the DA’s role as the top employers’ association and giving the association a central role in negotiating business labor relations. Over the next fifty years cooperation between labor, business, and government became increasingly routinized—so much so that by the 1960s Danish conservatives were bragging that they were responsible for a “decisive step in the expansion of the welfare state.”


pages: 261 words: 64,977

Pity the Billionaire: The Unexpected Resurgence of the American Right by Thomas Frank

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, bank run, big-box store, bonus culture, business cycle, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, commoditize, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, Deng Xiaoping, financial innovation, housing crisis, invisible hand, Kickstarter, money market fund, Naomi Klein, obamacare, payday loans, profit maximization, profit motive, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, strikebreaker, The Chicago School, The Myth of the Rational Market, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, union organizing, Washington Consensus, white flight, Works Progress Administration

To “the reactionary,” the New Deal reforms were objectionable for the opposite reason: they meant “the capitalist system has been destroyed.”15 It is this latter complaint that concerns us today, and Seldes provided a helpful gloss on its long history. People had moaned as far back as the 1840s that allowing labor unions to exist would destroy capitalism, the author recalled, and sure enough, the form of capitalism they had in those days died, to be replaced by “capitalism modified by the right of collective bargaining.” The end-time fears returned, according to Seldes, when the federal government threatened to begin regulating railroads in the 1880s, and again the end of the world came to pass. Capitalism died, to be replaced this time by “capitalism modified by collective bargaining and Federal regulation.”16 Life went on. Today, as in Gilbert Seldes’s time, the fear that true capitalism is about to perish is with us again. Now, as then, only absolutes seem to matter. The panicked ones ignore the American genius for pragmatism and the long, complicated history of political compromise that actually built our economic system.

This was no ordinary business-cycle downturn. Millions of Americans, and a large number of their banks, became insolvent in a matter of weeks. Sixteen trillion dollars in household wealth was incinerated on the pyre Wall Street had kindled. And yet, as I write this, the most effective political response to these events is a campaign to roll back regulation, to strip government employees of the right to collectively bargain, and to clamp down on federal spending. So let us give the rebels their due. Let us acknowledge that the conservative comeback of the last few years is indeed something unique in the history of American social movements: a mass conversion to free-market theory as a response to hard times. Before the present economic slump, I had never heard of a recession’s victims developing a wholesale taste for neoclassical economics or a spontaneous hostility to the works of Franklin Roosevelt.


pages: 288 words: 64,771

The Captured Economy: How the Powerful Enrich Themselves, Slow Down Growth, and Increase Inequality by Brink Lindsey

"Robert Solow", Airbnb, Asian financial crisis, bank run, barriers to entry, Bernie Sanders, Build a better mousetrap, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, collective bargaining, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, endogenous growth, experimental economics, experimental subject, facts on the ground, financial innovation, financial intermediation, financial repression, hiring and firing, Home mortgage interest deduction, housing crisis, income inequality, informal economy, information asymmetry, intangible asset, inventory management, invisible hand, Jones Act, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, mass immigration, mass incarceration, medical malpractice, Menlo Park, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Network effects, patent troll, plutocrats, Plutocrats, principal–agent problem, regulatory arbitrage, rent control, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, smart cities, software patent, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, tulip mania, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Washington Consensus, white picket fence, winner-take-all economy, women in the workforce

This is true by definition: in this context, political power consists of the ability to win distributional struggles over fixed resources. But although the rich and the powerful are often the same group of people, they don’t have to be. Accordingly, regulation can redistribute downward as well as upward. The minimum wage, for instance, creates rents in the form of above-market wages for workers at the bottom of the pay scale. Likewise, collective bargaining under the Wagner Act confers a wage premium of roughly 15 percent for unionized workers. Overtime regulations, the Davis-Bacon Act mandating the payment of prevailing wages on public works projects, universal service requirements for telephone service and public utilities, rent control and tenant protection laws, and the Americans with Disabilities Act provide further examples of regulatory policies that create rents for the less-well-off.

See household credit; mortgage lending brand name, 20 Breyer, Stephen, 100–101 Brooks, David, 144 Buffet, Warren, 108 Bush (George W.) administration, 44 Calomiris, Charles, 42, 58 capital deepening of, 27 rate of return on, 7 reserve vs., 50 types of, 20 Capital in the Twenty-First Century (Piketty), 7, 123 capture. See “cultural capture”; regulatory capture CBO (Congressional Budget Office), 162, 166 Center for Economic and Policy Research, 12 chain stores. See national chains “Chicago Plan”, 58 Clinton, Hillary, 145 Clinton administration, 44 Cochrane, John, 58 Code of Federal Regulations, 23 collective bargaining. See unionization competition, 5, 6, 13, 16, 31, 185n11 concentration of industry and, 20–21 occupational licensing and, 95–99 post-New Deal, 29 preventing inequality through, 8 regulation and, 7, 17 computers. See digital era/information technology concentrated interests, 129–33 concentration/consolidation of industry, 20–21, 185n8 Congressional Budget Office, 162, 166 Congressional Research Service, 161 Congressional staff system, 161–64 conservatism.

See regulation; regulatory capture status quo bias, 100 Stiglitz, Joseph, 12, 61 stock market, 31, 38, 46–48 Stop Online Piracy Act, 176 student loans, 38 subprime mortgages, 42–47 subsidies, 17 of countervailing power, 154–59, 208n13, 208n14 debt financing and, 36–63 failure to limit, 55–58 financial sector and, 32, 55–58 mortgage lending and, 36–45, 47, 57–59, 63 “Tobin’s Q” and, 20 Sunstein, Cass, 137, 165 Supreme Court, 76, 100, 166 judicial review and, 170–75 Tabarrok, Alex, 186n14 tariffs, 29, 31, 95, 149 taxation, 7 high income, 11 post-New Deal, 30–31 rising costs of home ownership and, 113 technology. See digital era/information technology Teles, Steven M., 14, 36, 161 Temin, Peter, 11 temporary monopolies, 16, 73 TFP. See total factor productivity “third party support”, 155 Thomas, Diana, 186n14 “Tobin’s Q”, 19–20, 22–23 total factor productivity, 24–27, 78–79 “Treaty of Detroit”, 11 Trump, Donald, 2–4, 8 tulip mania, 46 unionization, 6, 11, 31, 146, 157 collective bargaining and, 28 decline of, 91–92 post-New Deal, 29 upstream innovation, 74 upward mobility, 1, 30, 97–98, 143 upward redistribution, 12–14, 28–31, 127. See also redistribution of wealth homeownership and, 121–22 land-use and, 110 mortgage lending and, 39 urban areas, 114–15 VA. See Veterans Administration Vergara v. California, 158 Veterans Administration, 39, 41 Vox, 149 Wagner Act, 28 Walker, Jack, 155 Warren, Elizabeth, 135 “Washington Consensus”, 11 wealth inequality.


pages: 237 words: 67,154

Ours to Hack and to Own: The Rise of Platform Cooperativism, a New Vision for the Future of Work and a Fairer Internet by Trebor Scholz, Nathan Schneider

1960s counterculture, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, barriers to entry, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, Build a better mousetrap, Burning Man, capital controls, citizen journalism, collaborative economy, collaborative editing, collective bargaining, commoditize, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Debian, deskilling, disintermediation, distributed ledger, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, future of work, gig economy, Google bus, hiring and firing, income inequality, information asymmetry, Internet of things, Jacob Appelbaum, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, lake wobegon effect, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, minimum viable product, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, openstreetmap, peer-to-peer, post-work, profit maximization, race to the bottom, ride hailing / ride sharing, SETI@home, shareholder value, sharing economy, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, smart cities, smart contracts, Snapchat, TaskRabbit, technoutopianism, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, Uber for X, uber lyft, union organizing, universal basic income, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Zipcar

As the members say in their founding mission statement, their goals are “high-quality, convenient health care on-demand, to grow the LVN profession as well as employment opportunities for highly-trained LVNs, and to increase access to care.” By monopolizing the labor supply in a particular narrow market, organized labor can use the union worker cooperative model to enable workers to own their own labor and enjoy portable benefits, thanks to a collective bargaining agreement between the cooperative and the union. The cooperative guild can start on a manageable level by restricting the co-op work to one classification (like the LVN), but it can later scale to include multiple job classifications. What both of these paths signify is the potential for value when organized labor and worker cooperatives team up in the “gig economy.” Together, they can protect workers’ rights while also embracing the flexibility both in workers’ lives and in consumer demand that increasingly seems to be the way of the future.

As a result of their determined “learning by doing” process and teamwork, unionized and employee-owned cab companies will dominate the taxi marketplace in Denver. This represents a remarkable example of how solidarity-centric business structures can combine with determined union policy advocacy and market-available technology to produce more holistic business models. Green Taxi Cooperative has more than eight hundred worker-owners, who are also CWA members, with a newly signed collective bargaining agreement. Before this, CWA Local 7777 had assisted another local taxi cooperative, the two-hundred-driver Union Taxi, which is presently not unionized, and the union learned a lot from that process during round two. Green Taxi is joining other taxi drivers in New York City and elsewhere who are launching apps to step up the competition with Uber, allowing customers to hail a cab and pay for it with their devices of choice.

By controlling their digital ecosystems, they can turn everything into a productive asset, and every transaction can become an auction where they set the bidding and pricing rules. Platforms are also increasingly transforming the labor market. Uber, for instance, does not own cars and doesn’t employ drivers; it regards its workers as independent contractors. In this way, the company externalizes most costs to workers, eliminating collective bargaining and implementing intrusive data-driven mechanisms of reputation and rankings to reduce transaction costs (for the company). The growth of the sharing economy has so far come with an increasing precarization of labor, and erosion of job security, social protection, and safety nets for workers, such as benefits related to healthcare, pensions, parenting, and so on. If you are European like myself, and you’re used to a functioning, social-democratic safety net, what is now promised by companies like Uber and Airbnb is not very appealing.


pages: 305 words: 69,216

A Failure of Capitalism: The Crisis of '08 and the Descent Into Depression by Richard A. Posner

Andrei Shleifer, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, business cycle, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, corporate governance, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, debt deflation, diversified portfolio, equity premium, financial deregulation, financial intermediation, Home mortgage interest deduction, illegal immigration, laissez-faire capitalism, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, oil shock, Ponzi scheme, price stability, profit maximization, race to the bottom, reserve currency, risk tolerance, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, savings glut, shareholder value, short selling, statistical model, too big to fail, transaction costs, very high income

The debts that get written down can include health and pension benefits, which in the case of the auto companies continue to be a drag on profitability even though those benefits have been reduced in recent years. Assuming, therefore, that the companies would be economically viable at a reduced level of production and are broke only because they are crushed by debts contracted when their output was much greater, reorganization in bankruptcy would be the sensible solution to their financial problems. The bankruptcy court could also abrogate the collective bargaining contracts between the automakers and the United Auto Workers. That would allow the automakers to slash wages and benefits — and a drastic reduction in labor costs may well be essential to their long-term survival. But this rosy picture belongs to normal times. There were three problems with allowing the automakers to be forced into bankruptcy just as the nation was sliding into a depression.

In supporting the auto bailout bill the Democrats scored points with their constituencies by standing up for union workers, for the "greening" of the automobile industry, for states in which the domestic auto industry is centered that voted Democratic in the recent election (Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana), for the principle of active government, and for trying to avert a deepening of the current depression. The auto-bailout bill had earned the ire of Republican senators because of its failure to lean hard on the collective bargaining agreements negotiated by the United Auto Workers, because of the divided control of the industry that the bill created— divided among the manufacturers, a federal "car czar," and intrusive congressional oversight— and because of the considerable element of fantasy in the idea that Congress plus the President can revitalize the domestic auto industry. Nowhere is it written that the United States, let alone the states in which the domestic auto manufacturers are centered, has a comparative advantage over other countries, or other regions of the United States, in manufacturing motor vehicles.

The UAW's role in the decline of the Detroit auto industry underscores the potential dangers to the economy, in a period of great economic stress, of Democrats' traditional fondness for unions, which stems from the efforts that unions make to get Democratic politicians elected, as well as from New Deal nostalgia and other forms of sentimental liberalism. Quite apart from the UAW, the depression may give the Administration and Congress pause concerning measures to strengthen unions, such as the proposed Employee Free Choice Act. The act would abolish the requirement of secret elections to determine whether a workplace shall be unionized and, if the union prevails and union and employer cannot agree on the terms of a collective bargaining agreement, would require binding arbitration. A fall in wages is a problem in a depression, as we know, because it can further a deflationary spiral, although it can also reduce unemployment, so that the net effect is uncertain. But an increase in wages, and a reduction in the efficiency with which labor is utilized (because of union-imposed work rules), will have an unambiguously negative effect on output by increasing employers' labor costs, and the reduction in output will lead to an increase in unemployment.


pages: 128 words: 35,958

Getting Back to Full Employment: A Better Bargain for Working People by Dean Baker, Jared Bernstein

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Asian financial crisis, business cycle, collective bargaining, declining real wages, full employment, George Akerlof, income inequality, inflation targeting, mass immigration, minimum wage unemployment, new economy, price stability, publication bias, quantitative easing, Report Card for America’s Infrastructure, rising living standards, selection bias, War on Poverty

The absence of full employment in most years since the 1970s was not the only factor in play; the reasons for the rise in inequality include globalization, technological change, a bubble-driven finance sector claiming disproportionate profit shares, declining unions, a falling value of the minimum wage, and more. But slack employment and its corollary – diminished bargaining power – get overlooked, in no small part because policymakers assume full employment is out of their control, though it is decidedly not. To give up on full employment is a mistake, because in an economy in which collective bargaining is minimal in the private sector and under siege in the public sector, full employment is the only route for working Americans can get ahead. Rising living standards for the majority require a labor market that is tight enough to force employers to raise compensation to the level where they can attract and keep the workers they need. Whenever that force has been in place, working people have done much better than when it’s been absent.

In addition, because workers stay on the job, they do not have the same risk of falling into a period of long-term unemployment and losing their attachment to the workforce. Instead, they will be having their skills continually upgraded, as will their colleagues at work, as companies adjust their production in response to changes in demand and technology. This system has worked well in Germany in part because it has a long tradition of labor–management cooperation. About 20 percent of Germany’s workforce is unionized, but collective bargaining covers a much larger share, about 60 percent (in the United States only about 11 percent of the workforce are union members and 12.5 percent are covered by agreements).[46] Under German law, all large companies have workers’ councils that provide a formal opportunity for worker input regardless of whether or not the workers are unionized. In this environment it is easier to arrange for reductions in hours, since there is more of an atmosphere of trust between workers and management.


pages: 364 words: 104,697

Were You Born on the Wrong Continent? by Thomas Geoghegan

Albert Einstein, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bob Geldof, collective bargaining, corporate governance, cross-subsidies, dark matter, David Brooks, declining real wages, deindustrialization, ending welfare as we know it, facts on the ground, Gini coefficient, haute cuisine, income inequality, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, laissez-faire capitalism, low skilled workers, Martin Wolf, McJob, minimum wage unemployment, mittelstand, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, payday loans, pensions crisis, plutocrats, Plutocrats, purchasing power parity, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, union organizing, Wolfgang Streeck, women in the workforce

That is, elderly who had lower earnings may get a higher percentage. But that is bad news for upper-middle-class people like Barbara, whose 401(k) just got clobbered and now has to count more on Social Security. Okay, but hasn’t Europe cut back too? Even in the big example, Germany, where the public pension is just over 50 percent of working income, most Germans still have big supplements from collective bargaining. Besides, unlike us, who are deep in debt, Germans have high savings rates for their own accounts, which are not tied in to the stock market. Let’s assume that Alicia Munnell and other economists are correct and we should still get at least 67 percent of working income for retirement. That’s still true in Germany. It’s generally true in Europe. I can’t see how most Americans could even get close to that number if they have $50,000 median in their 401(k) and top out at 40 percent of their working income from Social Security.

Well, I hope they can keep as much as they can. Because getting your wage set outside the firm—over your head—helps you get more power within the firm. Even if you’re on the works council, you don’t have to ask the boss for a raise. Even if you’re on the supervisory board, you don’t ask. As Professor Martin Malin at Chicago-Kent College of Law once told me, “It takes the blood sport out of collective bargaining.” Compared to all of that, it’s not such a big deal who gets to set the closing hours. But why aren’t there huge nationwide strikes? They don’t riot. They don’t burn tires. It’s not like France or Italy. Well, think of the difference between the French and German model. In the French model, the workers are outside in the street and throwing rocks through the window. But in the German model, the workers are “inside,” running the place.

I wrote a long minute and laid out the problem. Some of us said, ‘Stop. Let’s keep it, East Germany, a separate country, at least for five or six years,’ because we couldn’t afford it. It would ruin the whole country.” Specifically, he meant that, with the higher taxes that West Germans would have to pay to bail out East Germans, it would be impossible to keep the welfare state. It would be impossible to keep the system of collective bargaining. M. laid out the trap into which the left had fallen: to bail out the East Germans, the new Germany would have to run a deficit or cut benefits. Well, as they were about to introduce the euro under the Treaty of Maastricht, they were forbidden to run a deficit that might have weakened the new currency throughout Europe as a whole. So they would have to cut back the welfare state. It was the revenge of the Right.


pages: 382 words: 107,150

We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now: The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages by Annelise Orleck

airport security, American Legislative Exchange Council, anti-communist, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, British Empire, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, card file, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate social responsibility, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Ferguson, Missouri, financial deregulation, Food sovereignty, gig economy, global supply chain, global value chain, immigration reform, indoor plumbing, Kickstarter, land reform, land tenure, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, McJob, means of production, new economy, payday loans, precariat, race to the bottom, Rana Plaza, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, shareholder value, Skype, special economic zone, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, union organizing, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working poor

When global labor federations with 175 million members called for a boycott, Carlsberg announced it would work with Danish unions to improve conditions for its Asian beer promoters. Tep watched it all closely, she says. “Lessons in global capitalism.” She smiles. “My education.”2 The union educates the women well, she says. “The rep comes to see the women at least twenty times a year and invites us to classes. We learn about labor rights and gender-based violence at work. They teach us how to organize, how to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement.” But there is a deeper connection, an emotional bond. “I consider the union my second mother,” she says. “When I have problems, union members care about me, about my working conditions. And when we are challenged the union helps us.” Before she became a union member, Tep was earning $30–$40 a month. By 2015, after several strikes, she was earning $160, enough to keep her parents in their home and her children in school.

Mary Kay Henry, the gifted and controversial organizer who became president of SEIU in 2010, sought ways to organize low-wage workers who were not, and might never be, union members, in order to build a national consensus that wages must rise. Both of these strategies have brought real change. The germ of what would become Fight for $15 was planted in the winter of 2011. Newly elected Wisconsin governor Scott Walker pushed the state to cut salaries and benefits. An ALEC bill was introduced to take away collective bargaining rights from public employees. Protests erupted at the state capitol in Madison. In a surprisingly strong response, eighty thousand people participated. Members of conservative police and firefighters’ unions joined more traditionally progressive nurses’ and teachers’ unions. Social media spread images of the protests worldwide. Arab Spring protesters sent pizza. European unions sent messages of support.

Sion Binos is tired and angry.10 Still, she takes hope in the young organizers she has recruited, women in their twenties and thirties who are savvy and smart and full of new ideas. They communicate and organize via smartphones and social media. “They are inventing something new,” she says with hope. Even in the newest “cheapest” place to produce, Ethiopia, where there is not yet a minimum wage law, trade union organizers have won collective bargaining and 25 percent wage increases since 2014. The movement is truly global. Binos continues to believe.11 “But we still need the basics,” she says. Many workers she organizes are children of farmers who have lost their lands. She points to a poster on the walls of the SENTRO building. A woman with her mouth taped shut holds an empty bowl in outstretched hands: “No Rice Without Freedom. No Freedom Without Rice,” the poster says.


pages: 870 words: 259,362

Austerity Britain: 1945-51 by David Kynaston

Alistair Cooke, anti-communist, British Empire, Chelsea Manning, collective bargaining, continuous integration, deindustrialization, deskilling, Etonian, full employment, garden city movement, hiring and firing, industrial cluster, invisible hand, job satisfaction, labour mobility, light touch regulation, mass immigration, moral panic, Neil Kinnock, occupational segregation, price mechanism, rent control, reserve currency, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, shared worldview, stakhanovite, strikebreaker, the market place, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, very high income, wage slave, washing machines reduced drudgery, wealth creators, women in the workforce, young professional

Predictably, it was Deakin who fought a particularly sturdy and effective campaign against Communist influence in the unions, including in 1949 persuading his own union to bar Communists from holding office in it; by about 1953 it was generally reckoned that Communist influence in the unions had dwindled significantly, though it was still far from extinct.19For the British Communist Party, however, the workplace was a crucial location in the larger struggle, given the party’s almost complete lack of success in conventional electoral politics, and it had in its ranks some very determined and motivated people more than willing to play the long industrial game. When agreeing in the late 1940s to go out on a limb for the Labour government, Deakin was adamant that a temporary wage freeze should in no way be taken as undermining the hallowed principle of free collective bargaining – a principle at the very heart of British trade unionism. Allan Flanders, the leading academic analyst of industrial relations in this period, explained in 1952 the all-important historical, largely nineteenth-century, context: The significance of collective bargaining to the workers might be summed up in the word, self-protection. It enabled them to protect their interests in relation to their employment in three ways. First of all, in the presence of a reserve army of unemployed, it eliminated the competition which would otherwise exist among them to offer their services at a lower price than their fellow-workers for the sake of securing employment.

But we were also egalitarians, wishing to see a shift in the distribution of wealth towards those with lower incomes, and a shift of power over the conduct of their working lives and environment towards working men and women; and, for both these reasons, emphasising the importance of trade unions in industry, in the economy, and in society. We therefore attached special importance to collective bargaining as the means whereby trade unions pursue their objectives. The book itself was imbued with the assumption that enhanced trade union power was, if exercised in the appropriate way, an almost unequivocal social and economic good. The appropriate way included moderation in recourse to the strike weapon; the use wherever possible of industry-wide collective bargaining; and such bargaining to be reliant upon long-nurtured codes rather than externally imposed legal contracts.20Altogether, it was in its way a noble vision. Unfortunately for its long-term implementation, however, the fact was that British trade unionism, as it had evolved by the early 1950s, had three fateful Achilles heels.

The Treasury, not for the first or last time, gave a masterclass in institutional scepticism; there was much intellectual confusion as to what economic planning in peacetime actually meant and entailed, as epitomised by the muddle-headedness of Morrison, theoretically in charge of planning; and for more than two years there was the unwillingness of either the Ministry of Labour or the trade union leaders (for all their considerable goodwill towards the government) to countenance a wages policy, seen as a direct threat to the long, jealously guarded tradition of free collective bargaining – an unwillingness that more or less scuppered the chance of any meaningful manpower planning. But ultimately, what really killed central economic planning was the lack of willpower on the part of government. In particular, the Labour Party’s commitment to democratic socialism meant in practice an aversion to either new, unaccountable administrative mechanisms or any form of tripartism (ie government, management and labour) that seemed to threaten the sovereignty of the familiar parliamentary system.


pages: 209 words: 80,086

The Global Auction: The Broken Promises of Education, Jobs, and Incomes by Phillip Brown, Hugh Lauder, David Ashton

active measures, affirmative action, barriers to entry, Branko Milanovic, BRICs, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, collective bargaining, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, future of work, glass ceiling, global supply chain, immigration reform, income inequality, industrial cluster, industrial robot, intangible asset, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market bubble, market design, neoliberal agenda, new economy, Paul Samuelson, pensions crisis, post-industrial society, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, race to the bottom, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, shared worldview, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, stem cell, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, trade liberalization, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, winner-take-all economy, working poor, zero-sum game

Human capital ideas not only changed the way people thought about skills and productivity but also had wider political appeal, as they suggested a new relationship between capital (money) and labor (minds). Investment in human beings was no longer solely a source of wealth creation for companies but also a source of earning potential for individuals. What people were paid did not depend on owning one’s own business or result from collective bargaining that set employers against labor unions in a fight for a bigger slice of the cake. Rather, wages were based on a worker’s contribution to productivity, as earnings were assumed to reflect value added to the organization. Everyone could become a capitalist, whether or not people knew it (or liked it), by investing in themselves through learning. As Schultz suggests, “Laborers have become capitalists not from a diffusion of the ownership of corporation stock, as folklore would have it, but from the acquisition of knowledge and skill that have economic value.”8 In turn, this was believed to contribute to a broader commitment to social justice as people were rewarded on individual merit, and the growth in middle-class jobs offered the potential for rapid social mobility through investments in human capital.

It has also depended on free market reforms initiated by Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. It is not only the greed of executives that is at issue; they are also the beneficiaries of a free market system that distorts income distribution in favor of a few. Free market policies shifted the balance of power in favor of shareholders and corporate bosses as much as the deregulation of global financial markets. By removing the potential for collective bargaining with the decline of union representation, market power became even more concentrated on the upper floors of corporate headquarters. Much like a game of Monopoly, unregulated markets have their own internal logic, as most of the money goes to those who own the houses and hotels on the prized streets of Manhattan. At the same time, these policies removed the social shock absorbers that gave protection to workers in other countries such as Sweden, France, and Germany.

See also United Kingdom Brown, Gordon, 23 bailout, 111, 148, 151 Batra, Ravi, 178n21 Baumol, William, 152 Becker, Gary, 122–23 Brown, Phillip, 143, 182n3 Buchanan, James, 134 build to order, 101–2 Bush administration, 111–12 business processes, 51–52, 72, 74–76, 77, 79 Bussolo, Maurizio, 130–31 recessions, 148 reverse engineering, 42 riots, 10 call centers, 51–52, 73, 81 Callahan, David, 144 Cambridge University, 134 Canada, 30, 91 Cao, Cong, 44 technology transfer, 41 telecommunications industry, 54 trade imbalance, 108–9, 151 unemployment, 41, 47 wage rate increase, 59 Capco Consulting, 77 capital (defined), 162–63, 187n30 capitalism, 4–6, 10–11, 17, 23–26, 54, 67–68, 110–11, 113, 115, 151, 157, 161, 180n25, war for talent, 88–89 WTO (World Trade Organization), 41 Christian, Parenti, 174n33 classical economics theory, 100 187n26 casino economy, 187n31 club of rich nations, 30, 32, 168n2 cold-callers, 74 CFO Magazine, 79 Chambers, John, 85 Chanel, 114 collective bargaining, 17, 125, 160 colleges and universities, 6, 7–9, 25–26, 30, 31, 32, 40–41, 46–47, 87–88, 93–95, 116, childhood, 11–12, 143–46, 160 China. See also BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) nations auto industry, 54 Blackstone Group Greater China, 43, Collins, Randall, 139 The Coming of Post-Industrial Society, 18 comparative advantage, 111 180n24 cheating scandal, 144 competencies, 78–79 competition China Development Bank (CDB), 42 China International Marine Containers Group (CIMC), 57–58 academic credentials, 139 Asian Tigers, 18 and education, 40 China Investment Corporation, 42–43 Chinese Academy of Science, 44 elite universities, 95 global auction, 132 Chinese Dragons, 58 education, 7–8, 29–30, 32, 32–35 global auction, 148 global economy, 3 human capital, 18, 106, 161 knowledge economy, 15 government as economic partner, 157–58 green technologies, 157 knowledge wars, 20, 22–23, 30, 47, 164 mass production, 71–72 Harvard Girl Yiting Liu, 145 Higher Education Mega Centre, 29 Human Genome Project, 40 neoliberalism, 24 and prosperity, 154–55 quality-cost revolution, 50 income inequalities, 129 intellectual property rights (IPRs), 53 knowledge wars, 20 middle class, 2, 130 modernization, 157 nanotechnology program, 44 self-interest, 40 STEM subjects studies, 155 supply chains, 104–5 transnational companies, 99–100 trust relations, 107 war for talent, 87, 89–93 opportunity trap, 137 Project 211, 33 quality-cost revolution, 50, 55, 60–61 R&D (research and development), 42–43, 53, 157 190 119, 121, 133–34, 136, 140, 153, 162, 177n26 Index winner-takes-all, 11, 165n7 computer industry, 42, 56, 66, 72–77, 81, 89, 100–102, 174n27.


pages: 151 words: 38,153

With Liberty and Dividends for All: How to Save Our Middle Class When Jobs Don't Pay Enough by Peter Barnes

Alfred Russel Wallace, banks create money, basic income, Buckminster Fuller, collective bargaining, computerized trading, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, deindustrialization, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, Jaron Lanier, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, land reform, Mark Zuckerberg, Network effects, oil shale / tar sands, Paul Samuelson, profit maximization, quantitative easing, rent-seeking, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, the map is not the territory, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Upton Sinclair, Vilfredo Pareto, wealth creators, winner-take-all economy

That has been done by various countries in various ways, but there’s always pushback and never a guarantee that gains for the middle class will endure. Sustaining a large middle class requires counterbalancing the profit-maximizing imperative of corporations. For much of the twentieth century, the requisite counterforce came from labor unions. In the United States and Western Europe, labor unions finished the job that Henry Ford started. Through collective bargaining, they drove up wages and shortened the workweek; through political power, they won such benefits as unemployment insurance and Medicare. In countries like Germany and Sweden, where labor unions have remained strong, so has the middle class. In the United States, by contrast, union membership peaked in 1945 at 35 percent of nonagricultural workers, then started declining. It’s now at 12 percent of the total workforce and just 6 percent of private sector workers, and the trend isn’t likely to reverse.6 THESE THREE PHENOMENA, though distinct, aren’t unconnected.

See also Carbon capping in California, 117–118 Clean Air Act creating, 99 climate change and, 99–100 labor unions and, 131–132 offsets in, 104–105 Capital gains, 47 Capitalism creative destruction and, 120 everyone-gets-a-share capitalism, 3–4, 42, 126 types of income and, 27–28 winner-take-all capitalism, 3, 33–34 Carbon capping, 97–118 European carbon trading system, 99, 104–105 Carbon dioxide carbon capping, 97–118 carbon taxing, 113–116 environmental movement and, 135–136 pollution permits, 93 Carbon Limits and Energy for America’s Renewal (CLEAR) Act, 142 Carbon taxing, 113–116 CheatNeutral.com, 104 China, 25–26, 105 Citizen’s income, 79–80 Civil War, debt-free money distribution and, 91–92 Clean Air Act, 99 Climate change, 99–100 Clinton, William J., 99, 114 Coal-burning power plants, 99 Coase, Ronald, 98–99 Collective bargaining, 19 Collins, Chuck, 33 Collins, Susan, 110 Commercial banks. See banks Committee on Economic Security (FDR), 41–42 Common Assets Trust in Vermont, 127–128 Common Sense (Paine), 7–8 Competition and monopolies, 51–52 Co-owned wealth. See also Dividends; Rent adjacent possible and, 121 audit of, 62 benefits, entitlement to, 62 components of, 60–61 defined, 11 at economy-wide level, 140–141 externalities and, 64 guidelines for creating, 89–92 management of, 62 mental ideas and, 122–127 one person, one share, 123–124 political environment and, 120 potential dividends and, 139–146 pre-distribution and, 125–127 quantity of assets needed for, 93–95 shared wealth dividends, 124–125 specific assets and, 141–146 user fees for, 85–86 Copyrights, rent from, 144 Cowen, Tyler, 135 Creative destruction, 120 Credo, 45 Crisis preparing for, 121–127 to-do lists and preparing for, 127–131 Currency trading, 92 D Dales, John, 98 Darwin, Charles, 120 Debt fractional reserve banking and, 90 leverage, 47 Debt-free money distribution, 90–91 Lincoln, Abraham and, 91 Defined-benefits pensions, 123 Deindustrialization, 17 Dell Computers, 25–26 Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, 109 Democrats and direct spending, 22 The Depression and the Townsend Plan, 133–134 Deregulation, 21 Derivatives, potential revenue from transaction fees, 143 Deunionization, 18–19 Distribution of wealth, 14 Dividends, 9–10.


pages: 775 words: 208,604

The Great Leveler: Violence and the History of Inequality From the Stone Age to the Twenty-First Century by Walter Scheidel

agricultural Revolution, assortative mating, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, collective bargaining, colonial rule, Columbian Exchange, conceptual framework, corporate governance, cosmological principle, crony capitalism, dark matter, declining real wages, demographic transition, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, fixed income, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, Gini coefficient, global pandemic, hiring and firing, income inequality, John Markoff, knowledge worker, land reform, land tenure, low skilled workers, means of production, mega-rich, Network effects, nuclear winter, offshore financial centre, plutocrats, Plutocrats, race to the bottom, recommendation engine, rent control, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, Simon Kuznets, The Future of Employment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, universal basic income, very high income, working-age population, zero-sum game

This form of worker organization was employed to motivate the labor force for the war effort and provided a basis for the creation of enterprise-based unions under occupation. The Labor Union Law was drafted immediately after the arrival of U.S. forces, in the fall of 1945, based on prewar plans that had failed. Passed at the very end of that year, it gave workers the right to organize, strike, and engage in collective bargaining. Membership soared: in 1946, 40 percent of workers were unionized, and almost 60 percent were by 1949. Benefits on top of wages increased, and the health insurance and pension systems created during the war were expanded. Unions proved instrumental in establishing cooperative industrial relations, with their emphasis on seniority wages, job security—and, most important from a leveling perspective, by fostering consensus regarding a new wage structure that determined pay based on age, need, living standards, prices, and inflation.

Alongside the restructuring of businesses and labor relations as well as land reform, progressive taxation was a key mechanism for sustaining wartime leveling. Formalized from the 1950s onward, the Japanese tax system imposed a marginal rate of 60 percent to 75 percent on top incomes and an estate tax in excess of 70 percent on the largest fortunes. This helped contain income inequality and wealth accumulation well into the 1990s, just as strong protections for tenants depressed housing rental income and collective bargaining ensured ongoing wage compression.25 The war and its consequences made leveling sudden, massive, and sustainable. The bloodiest years in Japanese history, a war that cost millions of lives and visited enormous destruction on the homeland, had produced a uniquely equalizing outcome. This outcome was made possible by a novel type of warfare that required full demographic and economic mobilization.

New taxes were eventually required to fund these efforts, including highly progressive defense taxes and a special tax of 30 percent of estimated war profits levied on persons as well as businesses. These measures soon helped check the initial rise in inequality. Sweden likewise witnessed a sudden rise in top income shares during World War I, followed by a sharp decline by 1920, and so did Denmark. In both countries, the top 1 percent income share briefly exploded to an exceptional 28 percent in 1916 or 1917. The Danish state was slow to impose price and rent controls, and a collective bargaining agreement that did not expire until 1916 depressed real wages for workers at a time of rapid economic growth. Taxation rose only feebly. (There are no usable income share data for Norway for these years.31) By contrast, World War II coincided with opposite trends in several of the few European countries that escaped the conflict. Top income shares in Ireland declined significantly between 1938 and 1945, but data resolution is poor.


pages: 327 words: 84,627

The Green New Deal: Why the Fossil Fuel Civilization Will Collapse by 2028, and the Bold Economic Plan to Save Life on Earth by Jeremy Rifkin

1919 Motor Transport Corps convoy, 2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, autonomous vehicles, Bernie Sanders, blockchain, borderless world, business cycle, business process, carbon footprint, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, decarbonisation, en.wikipedia.org, energy transition, failed state, ghettoisation, hydrogen economy, information asymmetry, intangible asset, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, means of production, megacity, Network effects, new economy, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, planetary scale, renewable energy credits, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, sovereign wealth fund, Steven Levy, the built environment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, union organizing, urban planning, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

Success in unionizing southern companies had been marginal at best. Stymied, organized labor found itself with little left in its recruiting toolkit. What to do? We argued that America’s labor union leaders needed to wake up from a long sleep to a new and potentially powerful and promising reality. While slumbering, their millions of workers, both in public and private employment, had part of their weekly wages deferred via collective bargaining contracts in the form of pension funds, retrievable upon retirement. Nation-states, provinces, and cities around the world had been following America’s lead, establishing similar pension-fund accounts for both public employees and workers in the private sector. In America, we said, pension funds are a new form of wealth that has emerged over the past thirty years to become the largest single pool of private capital in the world.

Any use of unionized pension funds in green infrastructure investments and related projects must include unionized workforces in the roll-outs, wherever possible, so that workers’ pension capital isn’t used, once again, to finance companies that are anti-union and that consciously eliminate union jobs on their worksites. Since only 11 percent of the American workforce is currently unionized and there will be green infrastructure projects that can’t fill workloads with sufficient unionized workforces, there will need to be at least a guarantee that protects the rights of workers to organize and collectively bargain, if they so choose. The matchmaker in the coming together of public and private pension funds and the green infrastructure build-out is green banks. Their mission is to provide a percentage of available capital for the express purpose of financing large-scale build-outs of the Third Industrial Revolution green infrastructure. Over the past decade, the UK, Japan, Australia, Malaysia, and other countries have created green banks that have invested in green energy to the tune of $40 billion or more.33 As early as 2012, the International Trade Union Confederation weighed in, urging the creation of green banks that could act as clearinghouses to bring together the vast pool of workers’ global pension funds with green infrastructure investments.34 In the United States, Chris Van Hollen, then a congressman and now a senator from Maryland, introduced the Green Bank Act of 2014, the first of its kind at the federal level.

Seventeenth, the use of union pension fund capital to finance federal, state, municipal, and county Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure projects should be conditional on ensuring that unionized workforces are employed wherever possible. Since only 11 percent of the American workforce is unionized, all Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure projects must also protect the right of workers to organize and safeguard collective bargaining rights. The state, municipal, and county governments should also provide “just transition” funds for communities that are economically dependent on the extracting, refining, and distributing of fossil fuels and should prioritize the transition from these stranded industries into the new green businesses and employment opportunities of a Third Industrial Revolution. Eighteenth, the student generation will need to learn the skills and develop the talents that will enable them to create new businesses and become gainfully employed in a Green New Deal economy.


Innovation and Its Enemies by Calestous Juma

3D printing, additive manufacturing, agricultural Revolution, Asilomar, Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA, autonomous vehicles, big-box store, business cycle, Cass Sunstein, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, computer age, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, deskilling, disruptive innovation, energy transition, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial innovation, global value chain, Honoré de Balzac, illegal immigration, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, loss aversion, Marc Andreessen, means of production, Menlo Park, mobile money, New Urbanism, Nicholas Carr, pensions crisis, phenotype, Ray Kurzweil, refrigerator car, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, smart grid, smart meter, stem cell, Steve Jobs, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Travis Kalanick

The introduction of labor-saving weaving machinery in Britain during the Industrial Revolution resulted in violent opposition from textile artisans. The new machinery allowed employers to replace high-skilled textile artisans with cheaper low-skilled labor. Fearing the loss of their livelihoods, textile artisans throughout Britain destroyed weaving machinery and other parts of their employers’ property, beginning in 1811 in Nottingham. The goal of this “collective bargaining by riot” was to force the end of mechanization in the textile industry.61 General public sentiment at the time opposed both the new machinery and the replacement of high-skilled workers with low-skilled labor in Britain, which made it possible for the Luddites to slow down the mechanization process. Public opposition to weaving machines came from various parts of society, such as shop owners and other businessmen who feared that the replacement of labor with machinery and the emergence of large factories would not be limited to the textile industry but would spill over to their industries as well.

The nonprofit CAAP, under the auspices of the CRLA, claimed that the majority of the funding and efforts by UC worked against the initial purpose of this act. CRLA claimed that UC overemphasized research on mechanization and agricultural technology, thus helping agricultural businesses at the expense of the family farm and the consumer. Specifically, the organization stated that UC’s research displaced farmworkers, eliminated small farms, harmed consumers, impaired the quality of rural life, and impeded collective bargaining.39 It asserted that in response to these grievances more resources should be applied to enhance the quality of life for small-scale farmers in California. This case sheds light on the sensitivity of mechanization, as well as on the extent to which parties will go to protect their interests. The legal action taken by the CRLA raises meaningful issues regarding the academic freedom of research institutions and differences in interpretation of the law.

Bourke, 163 Coconut oil, in margarine, 113–114 Coffee, 44–67 coffee beans (bunn), 49 coffee euphoria, 50–51 conclusions on, 64–67 debates over, 6 Europe, entry into, 54–64 expansion of trade, 53 history of, 46 indirect challenges to, 296 as “junior alcohol,” 304, 369n70 laws against, 302 origins of, 45–47 overview, 44–45 rumors about, 310 spread of, 47–54, 297 Sufis’ use of, 328n11 Vienna, coffee trade in, 297 Coffeehouses bans on, 49–50 as cultural innovation, 53–54 in England, 56–57, 60, 296 impact of growth of, 297, 329n36 in Marseilles, 55 as spaces for political discourse, 47, 52 in Yemen, 48 The Coffee Man’s Grenado Discharged upon the Maiden’s Complaint Against Coffee (pamphlet), 58 Cognitive components of attitudes, 36 Cohen, Stanley, 236 Cold storage, 185–187. See also Mechanical refrigeration Collective bargaining by riot, 26–27 Colomb (University of Aix freshman), 55–56 Colonialism, 57 Coloration of margarine, 105, 108 Columbian Exposition, cold-storage building fire at, 183 Columbia Records, 212, 216, 218 Command economies, free-market economies vs., 28 Commercial lighting systems, 145 Commission of the European Union, 286 Commission to Investigate the Subject of Cold Storage of Food (Massachusetts), 186–187, 188 Committee on Cold Storage (Warehousemen’s Association), 196 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), 229 Communication, scientific and technical, changing ecology of, 312–314 Compact discs, 220 Compagnonnages (trade organizations), 30 Competition in capitalism, 146 Complex systems, 27, 143.


pages: 402 words: 126,835

The Job: The Future of Work in the Modern Era by Ellen Ruppel Shell

3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, big-box store, blue-collar work, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer vision, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, follow your passion, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, game design, glass ceiling, hiring and firing, immigration reform, income inequality, industrial robot, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, low skilled workers, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, new economy, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, precariat, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Rodney Brooks, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, Tim Cook: Apple, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, urban renewal, white picket fence, working poor, Y Combinator, young professional, zero-sum game

As we’ve seen over the past half century, attempts to adopt federal legislation aimed at restoring the nation’s private sector unions have largely failed. Underlying this failure is a fundamental and intractable problem: collective bargaining. Built for an era of standardized industrial production, collective bargaining is a negotiation process between employers and a group of their employees to set the terms and conditions of work at a particular facility, typically a factory. Unfortunately, this system offers far fewer advantages today, when far fewer of us are working in manufacturing. Indeed, the portion of American workers currently covered by collective bargaining agreements is so small it seems wrong to call it a “system.” As we’ve also seen, in the absence of unions, the terms and conditions of work are under the unilateral control of employers, with individuals having little to no power to engage in meaningful negotiations.

“The economy is moving away from the way work was organized in the twentieth century, when ten thousand workers gathered in a single workplace, and where a strike of five hundred thousand steel workers could all but paralyze the nation,” labor historian Max Fraser told me. “Current attempts—the one-day strikes by fast-food employees and the online protests—are exciting and innovative, but they lack strategic focus. As a scholar of labor history, I know of no form of organizational power anything like the power of collective bargaining—unions were without a doubt the most effective way for workers to gain control over their work. But we’re in a moment in history where this no longer works, and we’re looking for new models.” Rob Witherell is part of a movement crafting what he hopes will become one of those new models—worker cooperatives that unite workers, owners, and consumers in a common cause that will benefit all stakeholders.


The Origins of the Urban Crisis by Sugrue, Thomas J.

affirmative action, business climate, collective bargaining, correlation coefficient, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, deindustrialization, desegregation, Detroit bankruptcy, Ford paid five dollars a day, George Gilder, ghettoisation, Gunnar Myrdal, hiring and firing, housing crisis, income inequality, indoor plumbing, informal economy, invisible hand, job automation, jobless men, Joseph Schumpeter, labor-force participation, low-wage service sector, manufacturing employment, mass incarceration, New Urbanism, oil shock, pink-collar, postindustrial economy, rent control, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, side project, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Chicago School, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, War on Poverty, white flight, working-age population, Works Progress Administration

At the outbreak of World War II, blacks made up only 4 percent of the auto work force; by 1945, they comprised 15 percent; by 1960, they made up about 16 percent of the work force. By any measure, auto work paid well. The average earnings of workers in the automobile industry were significantly greater than those of employees of other manufacturing concerns, and of nonmanufacturing workers. By the late 1940s, the fruits of collective bargaining between the UAW and the major automobile companies offered workers a pay package and benefits that were almost unsurpassed in American industry. And union-negotiated seniority rules meant that auto work was more stable and secure than many other jobs.8 But if auto work offered blacks their greatest opportunities in the postwar era, it was also the source of some of their greatest frustrations.

Blacks were underrepresented in high-level union positions through the 1960s, and it took the extraordinary efforts of the Trade Union Leadership Council, a black-led union reform movement, to persuade the UAW to appoint a black to the union’s executive board.27 Most significantly, the UAW, despite its oft-stated support for fair employment practices, failed to make nondiscrimination a major issue in contract negotiations, and directed its energies to seniority clauses, higher wages, and comprehensive benefits packages. As early as 1946, George Crockett, head of the UAW’s Fair Practices Department, criticized union leadership for its failure to press General Motors for an antidiscrimination clause in contract negotiations.28 Walter Reuther, in his testimony to the United States Commission on Civil Rights fifteen years later, claimed that the union “spent some of the most precious hours of our collective bargaining time” pushing for a fair employment clause. Ultimately, faced with strike deadlines, the UAW did not press hard on the issue, probably because union leaders knew that antidiscrimination policies did not have widespread support among the white rank and file.29 As a matter of principle, the UAW also placed economic issues that affected the bulk of the rank and file ahead of race-specific measures.

As UAW International staff lawyer Harold Cranefield argued, the Local 600 suit, if successful, would limit the freedom of employers “to withdraw employment for any reason whatsoever (except one which would violate the National Labor Relations Act)” and would represent “a great gain for labor.”27 The Local 600 suit also challenged a basic assumption of labor law, that the mobility of capital was an inalienable property right, not subject to worker input or negotiation. Embedded in labor law was the tenet that certain spheres of business activity were protected as “managerial prerogative,” not subject to collective bargaining. Workers and unions had long struggled for control over the work process, and often gained tenuous control over promotion and work rules on the shopfloor, but companies seldom allowed workers even a small voice in firms’ long-term planning and economic decision making. Most significantly, the courts and the National Labor Relations Board tenaciously protected companies from labor interference in “enterprise affairs.”


pages: 626 words: 167,836

The Technology Trap: Capital, Labor, and Power in the Age of Automation by Carl Benedikt Frey

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, business cycle, business process, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, collective bargaining, computer age, computer vision, Corn Laws, creative destruction, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, demographic transition, desegregation, deskilling, Donald Trump, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, factory automation, falling living standards, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, full employment, future of work, game design, Gini coefficient, Hyperloop, income inequality, income per capita, industrial cluster, industrial robot, intangible asset, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of the steam engine, invention of the wheel, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, job satisfaction, job-hopping, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, labour mobility, Loebner Prize, low skilled workers, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, mass immigration, means of production, Menlo Park, minimum wage unemployment, natural language processing, new economy, New Urbanism, Norbert Wiener, oil shock, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, Pareto efficiency, pattern recognition, pink-collar, Productivity paradox, profit maximization, Renaissance Technologies, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, robot derives from the Czech word robota Czech, meaning slave, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, social intelligence, speech recognition, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, The Future of Employment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, trade route, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Turing test, union organizing, universal basic income, washing machines reduced drudgery, wealth creators, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game

Most trade union officials may not have shared Reuther’s utopian vision, but as long as their members gained from progress, mechanization was equally in their interest. A series of separate case studies by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) illustrates this point by showing that unions frequently took an active role in the mechanization process. In one bakery, the introduction of semiautomatic production techniques was handled through collective bargaining, which allowed managers and union officials to resolve issues of displacement, downgrading, and compensation: “The consensus of the workers, as expressed by the local union president, was that the results of the changes on the whole were advantageous to them.… The local union president believed the workers have shared in the greater productivity of the plant through the wage increases and fringe benefits obtained in the past few years.”7 Naturally, the change to increased automation meant some shifting of people from jobs in reduced activities to jobs in expanding ones.

Unlike in the nineteenth century, the focus of labor in the twentieth century was on managing the transition instead of blocking technological progress. And the unions, acting in interest of their members, were for the most part a helpful facilitator in this regard. Looking back in 1984, the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment noted that “labor-management relations play an important role in the introduction of new technology. Using collective bargaining, organizing, and political strategies, unions in the United States have attempted to minimize what are perceived to be the socially harmful effects of new technologies on the labor force. Their efforts have generally been directed toward easing the adjustment process rather than retarding the process of change.”9 Labor had good reason to praise progress. As the winds of technological change swept through the workplace, jobs became more pleasant, less hazardous, and better paid.

The single largest industry in the mid-twentieth century was automotive, and the United Auto Workers (UAW) union achieved significant benefits for its members, including higher wages, generous pensions, and health insurance, while conceding to management decisions regarding mechanization and other key capital investments. In 1950, UAW’s president, Walter Reuther, negotiated what Fortune magazine would call “the Treaty of Detroit” with General Motors and made similar deals with Ford and Chrysler, protecting car companies from strikes while gaining higher pay and more holidays for its members in return, among other things. These deals also influenced collective bargaining in many other mass-production industries of the Second Industrial Revolution. But as the sociologist Andrew Cherlin writes: Whereas the 1950s workers, backed by their powerful unions, trusted management enough to pledge uninterrupted labor on the assembly line in return for good wages and the promise of retirement pensions down the road, today’s workers and employers do not trust each other to pledge much of anything.… The power of unions has faded: the overwhelming majority of less-educated young adults do not work in a place where a union has successfully organized.


pages: 221 words: 46,396

The Left Case Against the EU by Costas Lapavitsas

anti-work, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, capital controls, central bank independence, collective bargaining, declining real wages, eurozone crisis, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global reserve currency, hiring and firing, neoliberal agenda, offshore financial centre, post-work, price stability, quantitative easing, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Washington Consensus, Wolfgang Streeck

The costs would be borne by the countries directly hit by the crisis as well as by working people across the EU. To be more specific, EU policy was based on the view that the crisis was caused by a loss of competitiveness by peripheral countries owing to their putative institutional weaknesses. These included, presumably: inadequate fiscal controls on government; weak taxation systems; collective bargaining and protection for workers against firing; extensive public ownership of productive and other resources; generous pension systems; restrictive regulations in goods and services markets; bank loans advanced on concessional and even corrupt terms; and so on. On these grounds the Commission imposed a host of neoliberal policies on the stricken Southern periphery, most notably fiscal austerity and wage reductions, along with deregulation and privatization.

But its application to Greece by the Troika offers fresh insights into how the approach works within a powerful monetary union.18 Greece was provided with funding in the form of loans that it urgently needed, which came with ‘conditionality’ attached: that is, austerity policies to stabilize the external and the fiscal deficits as well as economic ‘reforms’, including deregulation of markets and privatization of public assets. ‘Reforms’ were particularly severe in the labour market, for instance, limiting trade union rights, abolishing collective bargaining, easing dismissals, intensifying the precariousness of employment, and so on. The lever for applying ‘conditionality’ was the gradual release of loan funds. If Greece complied, funds would be released; if it did not, funds would be withheld. Blackmail has rarely been more brazen. IMF policies typically have enormous social costs, especially for the poorest, and they are also deeply problematic in terms of terms of growth, employment, income, and the productive structure of the economy.


pages: 515 words: 142,354

The Euro: How a Common Currency Threatens the Future of Europe by Joseph E. Stiglitz, Alex Hyde-White

bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, business cycle, buy and hold, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, cashless society, central bank independence, centre right, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, currency peg, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, disintermediation, diversified portfolio, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, financial innovation, full employment, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, Growth in a Time of Debt, housing crisis, income inequality, incomplete markets, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, investor state dispute settlement, invisible hand, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, light touch regulation, manufacturing employment, market bubble, market friction, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, neoliberal agenda, new economy, open economy, paradox of thrift, pension reform, pensions crisis, price stability, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, the payments system, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, transfer pricing, trickle-down economics, Washington Consensus, working-age population

The Troika even put into question their commitment to the basic right of collective bargaining, the core labor standards that have been agreed to by almost all of the countries around the world. The language in which European authorities shrouded their demands was often obscure, but the intention seemed clear, so clear that in 2011 one of Papandreou’s loyalists, a bright and devoted economist, resigned from the government rather than be a party to this abnegation of basic workers’ rights. Here is what the Troika demanded of the Tsipras government (to which it reluctantly agreed), with the interpretation of Yannis Varoufakis, Greece’s former finance minister, in brackets. The Greek government agreed to undertake rigorous reviews and modernization of collective bargaining [i.e. to make sure that no collective bargaining is allowed], industrial action [i.e. that must be banned] and, in line with the relevant EU directive and best practice, collective dismissals [i.e. that should be allowed at the employers’ whim], along the timetable and the approach agreed with the Institutions [i.e. the Troika decides.]

., 266 Camdessus, Michel, 314 campaign contributions, 195, 355 Canada, 96 early 1990s expansion of, 209 in NAFTA, xiv railroad privatization in, 55 tax system in, 191 US’s free trade with, 45–46, 47 capital, 76–77 bank, 284–85 human, 78, 137 return to, 388 societal vs. physical, 77–78 tax on, 356 unemployment increased by, 264 capital adequacy standards, 152 capital budget, 245 capital controls, 389–90 capital flight, 126–34, 217, 354, 359 austerity and, 140 and labor flows, 135 capital flows, 14, 15, 25, 26, 27–28, 40, 116, 125, 128, 131, 351 economic volatility exacerbated by, 28, 274 and foreign ownership, 195 and technology, 139 capital inflows, 110–11 capitalism: crises in, xviii, 148–49 inclusive, 317 capital requirements, 152, 249, 378 Caprio, Gerry, 387 capture, 158–60 carbon price, 230, 260, 265, 368 cash, 39 cash flow, 194 Catalonia, xi CDU party, 314 central banks, 59, 354, 387–88 balance sheets of, 386 capture of, 158–59 credit auctions by, 282–84 credit creation by, 277–78 expertise of, 363 independence of, 157–63 inequality created by, 154 inflation and, 153, 166–67 as lender of last resort, 85, 362 as political institutions, 160–62 regulations and, 153 stability and, 8 unemployment and, 8, 94, 97, 106, 147, 153 CEO compensation, 383 Chapter 11, 259–60, 291 childhood poverty, 72 Chile, 55, 152–53 China, 81, 98, 164, 319, 352 exchange-rate policy of, 251, 254, 350–51 global integration of, 49–50 low prices of, 251 rise of, 75 savings in, 257 trade surplus of, 118, 121, 350–52 wages controlled in, 254 as world’s largest economy, 318, 327 chits, 287–88, 290, 299–300, 387, 388–389 Citigroup, 355 climate change, 229–30, 251, 282, 319 Clinton, Bill, xiv, xv, 187 closing hours, 220 cloves, 230 cognitive capture, 159 Cohesion Fund, 243 Cold War, 6 collateral, 364 collective action, 41–44, 51–52 and inequality, 338 and stabilization, 246 collective bargaining, 221 collective goods, 40 Common Agricultural Policy, 338 common regulatory framework, 241 communism, 10 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), 360, 382 comparative advantage, 12, 171 competition, 12 competitive devaluation, 104–6, 254 compromise, 22–23 confidence, 95, 200–201, 384 in banks, 127 in bonds, 145 and structural reforms, 232 and 2008 crisis, 280 confirmation bias, 309, 335 Congress, US, 319, 355 connected lending, 280 connectedness, 68–69 Connecticut, GDP of, 92 Constitutional Court, Greek, 198 consumption, 94, 278 consumption tax, 193–94 contract enforcement, 24 convergence, 13, 92–93, 124, 125, 139, 254, 300–301 convergence criteria, 15, 87, 89, 96–97, 99, 123, 244 copper mines, 55 corporate income tax, 189–90, 227 corporate taxes, 189–90, 227, 251 corporations, 323 regulations opposed by, xvi and shutdown of Greek banks, 229 corruption, 74, 112 privatization and, 194–95 Costa, António, 332 Council of Economic Advisers, 358 Council of State, Greek, 198 countercyclical fiscal policy, 244 counterfactuals, 80 Countrywide Financial, 91 credit, 276–85 “divorce”’s effect on, 278–79 excessive, 250, 274 credit auctions, 282–84 credit bubbles, 122–123 credit cards, 39, 49, 153 credit creation, 248–50, 277–78, 386 by banks, 280–82 domestic control over, 279–82 regulation of, 277–78 credit default swaps (CDSs), 159–60 crisis policy reforms, 262–67 austerity to growth, 263–65 debt restructuring and, 265–67 Croatia, 46, 331, 338 currency crises, 349 currency pegs, xii current account, 333–34 current account deficits, 19, 88, 108, 110, 120–121, 221, 294 and exit from euro, 273, 285–89 see also trade deficit Cyprus, 16, 30, 140, 177, 331, 386 capital controls in, 390 debt-to-GDP ratio of, 231 “haircut” of, 350, 367 Czech Republic, 46, 331 debit cards, 39, 49 debtors’ prison, 204 debt restructuring, 201, 203–6, 265–67, 290–92, 372, 390 of private debt, 291 debts, xx, 15, 93, 96, 183 corporate, 93–94 crisis in, 110–18 in deflation, xii and exit from eurozone, 273 with foreign currency, 115–18 household, 93–94 increase in, 18 inherited, 134 limits of, 42, 87, 122, 141, 346, 367 monetization of, 42 mutualization of, 242–43, 263 place-based, 134, 242 reprofiling of, 32 restructuring of, 259 debt-to-GDP ratio, 202, 210–11, 231, 266, 324 Declaration of Independence, 319 defaults, 102, 241, 338, 348 and debt mutualization, 243 deficit fetishism, 96 deficits, fiscal, xx, 15, 20, 93, 96, 106, 107–8, 122, 182, 384 and balanced-budget multiplier, 188–90, 265 constitutional amendment on, 339 and exit from euro, 273, 289–90 in Greece, 16, 186, 215, 233, 285–86, 289 limit of, 42, 87, 94–95, 122, 138, 141, 186, 243, 244, 265, 346, 367 primary, 188 problems financing, 110–12 structural, 245 deficits, trade, see trade deficits deflation, xii, 147, 148, 151, 166, 169, 277, 290 Delors, Jacques, 7, 332 democracy, lack of faith in, 312–14 Democracy in America (Tocqueville), xiii democratic deficit, 26–27, 35, 57–62, 145 democratic participation, xix Denmark, 45, 307, 313, 331 euro referendum of, 58 deposit insurance, 31, 44, 129, 199, 301, 354–55, 386–87 common in eurozone, 241, 242, 246, 248 derivatives, 131, 355 Deutsche Bank, 283, 355 devaluation, 98, 104–6, 254, 344 see also internal devaluation developing countries, and Washington Consensus, xvi discretion, 262–63 discriminatory lending practices, 283 disintermediation, 258 divergence, 15, 123, 124–44, 255–56, 300, 321 in absence of crisis, 128–31 capital flight and, 126–34 crisis policies’ exacerbation of, 140–43 free mobility of labor and, 134–36, 142–44, 242 in public investment, 136–38 reforms to prevent, 243 single-market principle and, 125–26 in technology, 138–39 in wealth, 139–40 see also capital flows; labor movement diversification, of production, 47 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, 355 dollar peg, 50 downsizing, 133 Draghi, Mario, 127, 145, 156, 158, 165, 269, 363 bond market supported by, 127, 200, 201 Drago, Luis María, 371 drug prices, 219 Duisenberg, Willem Frederik “Wim,” 251 Dynamic Stochastic Equilibrium model, 331 East Asia, 18, 25, 95, 102–3, 112, 123, 202, 364, 381 convergence in, 138 Eastern Europe, 10 Economic Adjustment Programme, 178 economic distortions, 191 economic growth, xii, 34 confidence and, 232 in Europe, 63–64, 69, 73–74, 74, 75, 163 lowered by inequality, 212–13 reform of, 263–65 and structural reforms, 232–35 economic integration, xiv–xx, 23, 39–50 euro and, 46–47 political integration vs., 51–57 single currency and, 45–46 economic rents, 226, 280 economics, politics and, 308–18 economic security, 68 economies of scale, 12, 39, 55, 138 economists, poor forecasting by, 307 education, 20, 76, 344 investment in, 40, 69, 137, 186, 211, 217, 251, 255, 300 electricity, 217 electronic currency, 298–99, 389 electronics payment mechanism, 274–76, 283–84 emigration, 4, 68–69 see also migration employment: central banks and, 8, 94, 97 structural reforms and, 257–60 see also unemployment Employment Act (1946), 148 energy subsidies, 197 Enlightenment, 3, 318–19 environment, 41, 257, 260, 323 equality, 225–26 equilibrium, xviii–xix Erasmus program, 45 Estonia, 90, 331, 346 euro, xiv, 325 adjustments impeded by, 13–14 case for, 35–39 creation of, xii, 5–6, 7, 10, 333 creation of institutions required by, 10–11 divergence and, see divergence divorce of, 272–95, 307 economic integration and, 46–47, 268 as entailing fixed exchange rate, 8, 42–43, 46–47, 86–87, 92, 93, 94, 102, 105, 143, 193, 215–16, 240, 244, 249, 252, 254, 286, 297 as entailing single interest rate, 8, 85–88, 92, 93, 94, 105, 129, 152, 240, 244, 249 and European identification, 38–39 financial instability caused by, 131–32 growth promised by, 235 growth slowed by, 73 hopes for, 34 inequality increased by, xviii interest rates lowered by, 235 internal devaluation of, see internal devaluation literature on, 327–28 as means to end, xix peace and, 38 proponents of, 13 referenda on, 58, 339–40 reforms needed for, xii–xiii, 28–31 risk of, 49–50 weakness of, 224 see also flexible euro Eurobond, 356 euro crisis, xiii, 3, 4, 9 catastrophic consequences of, 11–12 euro-euphoria, 116–17 Europe, 151 free trade area in, 44–45 growth rates in, 63–64, 69, 73–74, 74, 75, 163 military conflicts in, 196 social models of, 21 European Central Bank (ECB), 7, 17, 80, 112–13, 117, 144, 145–73, 274, 313, 362, 368, 380 capture of, 158–59 confidence in, 200–201 corporate bonds bought by, 141 creation of, 8, 85 democratic deficit and, 26, 27 excessive expansion controlled by, 250 flexibility of, 269 funds to Greece cut off by, 59 German challenges to, 117, 164 governance and, 157–63 inequality created by, 154–55 inflation controlled by, 8, 25, 97, 106, 115, 145, 146–50, 151, 163, 165, 169–70, 172, 250, 256, 266 interest rates set by, 85–86, 152, 249, 302, 348 Ireland forced to socialize losses by, 134, 156, 165 new mandate needed by, 256 as political institution, 160–62 political nature of, 153–56 quantitative easing opposed by, 151 quantitative easing undertaken by, 164, 165–66, 170, 171 regulations by, 249, 250 unemployment and, 163 as unrepresentative, 163 European Commission, 17, 58, 161, 313, 332 European Court of Human Rights, 45 European Economic Community (EEC), 6 European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM), 30, 335 European Exchange Rate Mechanism II (ERM II), 336 European Free Trade Association, 44 European Free Trade Association Court, 44 European Investment Bank (EIB), 137, 247, 255, 301 European Regional Development Fund, 243 European Stability Mechanism, 23, 246, 357 European Union: budget of, 8, 45, 91 creation of, 4 debt and deficit limits in, 87–88 democratic deficit in, 26–27 economic growth in, 215 GDP of, xiii and lower rates of war, 196 migration in, 90 proposed exit of UK from, 4 stereotypes in, 12 subsidiarity in, 8, 41–42, 263 taxes in, 8, 261 Euro Summit Statement, 373 eurozone: austerity in, see austerity banking union in, see banking union counterfactual in, 235–36 double-dip recessions in, 234–35 Draghi’s speech and, 145 economic integration and, xiv–xx, 23, 39–50, 51–57 as flawed at birth, 7–9 framework for stability of, 244–52 German departure from, 32, 292–93 Greece’s possible exit from, 124 hours worked in, 71–72 lack of fiscal policy in, 152 and move to political integration, xvi, 34, 35, 51–57 Mundell’s work on dangers of, 87 policies of, 15–17 possible breakup of, 29–30 privatization avoided in, 194 saving, 323–26 stagnant GDP in, 12, 65–68, 66, 67 structure of, 8–9 surpluses in, 120–22 theory of, 95–97 unemployment in, 71, 135, 163, 177–78, 181, 331 working-age population of, 70 eurozone, proposed structural reforms for, 239–71 common financial system, see banking union excessive fiscal responsibility, 163 exchange-rate risks, 13, 47, 48, 49–50, 125, 235 exchange rates, 80, 85, 288, 300, 338, 382, 389 of China, 251, 254, 350–51 and competitive devaluation, 105–6 after departure of northern countries, 292–93 of euro, 8, 42–43, 46–47, 86–87, 92, 93, 94, 102, 105, 215–16, 240, 244, 249, 252, 254, 286, 297 flexible, 50, 248, 349 and full employment, 94 of Germany, 254–55, 351 gold and, 344–45 imports and, 86 interest rates and, 86 quantitative easing’s lowering of, 151 real, 105–6 and single currencies, 8, 42–43, 46–47, 86–87, 92, 93, 94, 97–98 stabilizing, 299–301 and trade deficits, 107, 118 expansionary contractions, 95–96, 208–9 exports, 86, 88, 97–99, 98 disappointing performance of, 103–5 external imbalances, 97–98, 101, 109 externalities, 42–43, 121, 153, 301–2 surpluses as, 253 extremism, xx, 4 Fannie Mae, 91 farmers, US, in deflation, xii Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), 91 Federal Reserve, US, 349 alleged independence of, 157 interest rates lowered by, 150 mandate of, 8, 147, 172 money pumped into economy by, 278 quantitative easing used by, 151, 170 reform of, 146 fiat currency, 148, 275 and taxes, 284 financial markets: lobbyists from, 132 reform of, 214, 228–29 short-sighted, 112–13 financial systems: necessity of, xix real economy of, 149 reform of, 257–58 regulations needed by, xix financial transaction system, 275–76 Finland, 16, 81, 122, 126, 292, 296, 331, 343 growth in, 296–97 growth rate of, 75, 76, 234–35 fire departments, 41 firms, 138, 186–87, 245, 248 fiscal balance: and cutting spending, 196–98 tax revenue and, 190–96 Fiscal Compact, 141, 357 fiscal consolidation, 310 fiscal deficits, see deficits, fiscal fiscal policy, 148, 245, 264 in center of macro-stabilization, 251 countercyclical, 244 in EU, 8 expansionary, 254–55 stabilization of, 250–52 fiscal prudence, 15 fiscal responsibility, 163 flexibility, 262–63, 269 flexible euro, 30–31, 272, 296–305, 307 cooperation needed for, 304–5 food prices, 169 forbearance, 130–31 forecasts, 307 foreclosure proposal, 180 foreign ownership, privatization and, 195 forestry, 81 France, 6, 14, 16, 114, 120, 141, 181–82, 331, 339–40, 343 banks of, 202, 203, 231, 373 corporate income tax in, 189–90 euro creation regretted in, 340 European Constitution referendum of, 58 extreme right in, xi growth in, 247 Freddie Mac, 91 Freefall (Stiglitz), 264, 335 free mobility of labor, xiv, 26, 40, 125, 134–36, 142–44, 242 Friedman, Milton, 151, 152–53, 167, 339 full employment, 94–97, 379 G-20, 121 gas: import of, 230 from Russia, 37, 81, 93 Gates Foundation, 276 GDP-indexed bonds, 267 German bonds, 114, 323 German Council of Economic Experts, 179, 365 Germany, xxi, 14, 30, 65, 108, 114, 141, 181–82, 207, 220, 286, 307, 331, 343, 346, 374 austerity pushed by, 186, 232 banks of, 202, 203, 231–32, 373 costs to taxpayers of, 184 as creditor, 140, 187, 267 debt collection by, 117 debt in, 105 and debt restructuring, 205, 311 in departure from eurozone, 32, 292–93 as dependent on Russian gas, 37 desire to leave eurozone, 314 ECB criticized by, 164 EU economic practices controlled by, 17 euro creation regretted in, 340 exchange rate of, 254–55, 351 failure of, 13, 78–79 flexible exchange of, 304 GDP of, xviii, 92 in Great Depression, 187 growing poverty in, 79 growth of, 78, 106, 247 hours worked per worker in, 72 inequality in, 79, 333 inflation in, 42, 338, 358 internal solidarity of, 334 lack of alternative to euro seen by, 11 migrants to, 320–21, 334–35, 393 minimum wage in, 42, 120, 254 neoliberalism in, 10 and place-based debt, 136 productivity in, 71 programs designed by, 53, 60, 61, 202, 336, 338 reparations paid by, 187 reunification of, 6 rules as important to, 57, 241–42, 262 share of global employment in, 224 shrinking working-age population of, 70, 78–79 and Stability and Growth Pact, 245 and structural reforms, 19–20 “there is no alternative” and, 306, 311–12 trade surplus of, 117, 118–19, 120, 139, 253, 293, 299, 350–52, 381–82, 391 “transfer union” rejected by, 22 US loans to, 187 victims blamed by, 9, 15–17, 177–78, 309 wages constrained by, 41, 42–43 wages lowered in, 105, 333 global financial crisis, xi, xiii–xiv, 3, 12, 17, 24, 67, 73, 75, 114, 124, 146, 148, 274, 364, 387 and central bank independence, 157–58 and confidence, 280 and cost of failure of financial institutions, 131 lessons of, 249 monetary policy in, 151 and need for structural reform, 214 originating in US, 65, 68, 79–80, 112, 128, 296, 302 globalization, 51, 321–23 and diminishing share of employment in advanced countries, 224 economic vs. political, xvii failures of, xvii Globalization and Its Discontents (Stig-litz), 234, 335, 369 global savings glut, 257 global secular stagnation, 120 global warming, 229–30, 251, 282, 319 gold, 257, 275, 277, 345 Goldman Sachs, 158, 366 gold standard, 148, 291, 347, 358 in Great Depression, xii, 100 goods: free movement of, 40, 143, 260–61 nontraded, 102, 103, 169, 213, 217, 359 traded, 102, 103, 216 Gordon, Robert, 251 governance, 157–63, 258–59 government spending, trade deficits and, 107–8 gravity principle, 124, 127–28 Great Depression, 42, 67, 105, 148, 149, 168, 313 Friedman on causes of, 151 gold standard in, xii, 100 Great Malaise, 264 Greece, 14, 30, 41, 64, 81, 100, 117, 123, 142, 160, 177, 265–66, 278, 307, 331, 343, 366, 367–68, 374–75, 386 austerity opposed by, 59, 60–62, 69–70, 207–8, 392 balance of payments, 219 banks in, 200–201, 228–29, 231, 270, 276, 367, 368 blaming of, 16, 17 bread in, 218, 230 capital controls in, 390 consumption tax and, 193–94 counterfactual scenario of, 80 current account surplus of, 287–88 and debt restructuring, 205–7 debt-to-GDP ratio of, 231 debt write-offs in, 291 decline in labor costs in, 56, 103 ECB’s cutting of funds to, 59 economic growth in, 215, 247 emigration from, 68–69 fiscal deficits in, 16, 186, 215, 233, 285–86, 289 GDP of, xviii, 183, 309 hours worked per worker in, 72 inequality in, 72 inherited debt in, 134 lack of faith in democracy in, 312–13 living standards in, 216 loans in, 127 loans to, 310 migrants and, 320–21 milk in, 218, 223, 230 new currency in, 291, 300 oligarchs in, 16, 227 output per working-age person in, 70–71 past downturns in, 235–36 pensions in, 16, 78, 188, 197–98, 226 pharmacies in, 218–20 population decline in, 69, 89 possible exit from eurozone of, 124, 197, 273, 274, 275 poverty in, 226, 261, 376 primary surplus of, 187–88, 312 privatization in, 55, 195–96 productivity in, 71, 342 programs imposed on, xv, 21, 27, 60–62, 140, 155–56, 179–80, 181, 182–83, 184–85, 187–88, 190–93, 195–96, 197–98, 202–3, 205, 206, 214–16, 218–23, 225–28, 229, 230, 231, 233–34, 273, 278, 308, 309–11, 312, 315–16, 336, 338 renewable energy in, 193, 229 social capital destroyed in, 78 sovereign spread of, 200 spread in, 332 and structural reforms, 20, 70, 188, 191 tax revenue in, 16, 142, 192, 227, 367–368 tools lacking for recovery of, 246 tourism in, 192, 286 trade deficits in, 81, 194, 216–17, 222, 285–86 unemployment in, xi, 71, 236, 267, 332, 338, 342 urgency in, 214–15 victim-blaming of, 309–11 wages in, 216–17 youth unemployment in, xi, 332 Greek bonds, 116, 126 interest rates on, 4, 114, 181–82, 201–2, 323 restructuring of, 206–7 green investments, 260 Greenspan, Alan, 251, 359, 363 Grexit, see Greece, possible exit from eurozone of grocery stores, 219 gross domestic product (GDP), xvii decline in, 3 measurement of, 341 Growth and Stability Pact, 87 hedge funds, 282, 363 highways, 41 Hitler, Adolf, 338, 358 Hochtief, 367–68 Hoover, Herbert, 18, 95 human capital, 78, 137 human rights, 44–45, 319 Hungary, 46, 331, 338 hysteresis, 270 Iceland, 44, 111, 307, 354–55 banks in, 91 capital controls in, 390 ideology, 308–9, 315–18 imports, 86, 88, 97–99, 98, 107 incentives, 158–59 inclusive capitalism, 317 income, unemployment and, 77 income tax, 45 Independent Commission for the Reform of International Corporate Taxation, 376–377 Indonesia, 113, 230–31, 314, 350, 364, 378 industrial policies, 138–39, 301 and restructuring, 217, 221, 223–25 Industrial Revolution, 3, 224 industry, 89 inequality, 45, 72–73, 333 aggregate demand lowered by, 212 created by central banks, 154 ECB’s creation of, 154–55 economic performance affected by, xvii euro’s increasing of, xviii growth’s lowering of, 212 hurt by collective action, 338 increased by neoliberalism, xviii increase in, 64, 154–55 inequality in, 72, 212 as moral issue, xviii in Spain, 72, 212, 225–26 and tax harmonization, 260–61 and tax system, 191 inflation, 277, 290, 314, 388 in aftermath of tech bubble, 251 bonds and, 161 central banks and, 153, 166–67 consequences of fixation on, 149–50, 151 costs of, 270 and debt monetization, 42 ECB and, 8, 25, 97, 106, 115, 145, 146–50, 151, 163, 165, 169–70, 172, 255, 256, 266 and food prices, 169 in Germany, 42, 338, 358 interest rates and, 43–44 in late 1970s, 168 and natural rate hypothesis, 172–73 political decisions and, 146 inflation targeting, 157, 168–70, 364 information, 335 informational capital, 77 infrastructure, xvi–xvii, 47, 137, 186, 211, 255, 258, 265, 268, 300 inheritance tax, 368 inherited debt, 134 innovation, 138 innovation economy, 317–18 inputs, 217 instability, xix institutions, 93, 247 poorly designed, 163–64 insurance, 355–356 deposit, see deposit insurance mutual, 247 unemployment, 91, 186, 246, 247–48 integration, 322 interest rates, 43–44, 86, 282, 345, 354 in aftermath of tech bubble, 251 ECB’s determination of, 85–86, 152, 249, 302, 348 and employment, 94 euro’s lowering of, 235 Fed’s lowering of, 150 on German bonds, 114 on Greek bonds, 4, 114, 181–82 on Italian bonds, 114 in late 1970s, 168 long-term, 151, 200 negative, 316, 348–49 quantitative easing and, 151, 170 short-term, 249 single, eurozone’s entailing of, 8, 85–88, 92, 93, 94, 105, 129, 152, 240, 244, 249 on Spanish bonds, 114, 199 spread in, 332 stock prices increased by, 264 at zero lower bound, 106 intermediation, 258 internal devaluation, 98–109, 122, 126, 220, 255, 388 supply-side effects of, 99, 103–4 International Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress, 79, 341 International Labor Organization, 56 International Monetary Fund (IMF), xv, xvii, 10, 17, 18, 55, 61, 65–66, 96, 111, 112–13, 115–16, 119, 154, 234, 289, 309, 316, 337, 349, 350, 370, 371, 381 and Argentine debt, 206 conditions of, 201 creation of, 105 danger of high taxation warnings of, 190 debt reduction pushed by, 95 and debt restructuring, 205, 311 and failure to restore credit, 201 global imbalances discussed by, 252 and Greek debts, 205, 206, 310–11 on Greek surplus, 188 and Indonesian crisis, 230–31, 364 on inequality’s lowering of growth, 212–13 Ireland’s socialization of losses opposed by, 156–57 mistakes admitted by, 262, 312 on New Mediocre, 264 Portuguese bailout of, 178–79 tax measures of, 185 investment, 76–77, 111, 189, 217, 251, 264, 278, 367 confidence and, 94 divergence in, 136–38 in education, 137, 186, 211, 217, 251, 255, 300 infrastructure in, xvi–xvii, 47, 137, 186, 211, 255, 258, 265, 268, 300 lowered by disintermediation, 258 public, 99 real estate, 199 in renewable energy, 229–30 return on, 186, 245 stimulation of, 94 in technology, 137, 138–39, 186, 211, 217, 251, 258, 265, 300 investor state dispute settlement (ISDS), 393–94 invisible hand, xviii Iraq, refugees from, 320 Iraq War, 36, 37 Ireland, 14, 16, 44, 113, 114–15, 122, 178, 234, 296, 312, 331, 339–40, 343, 362 austerity opposed in, 207 debt of, 196 emigrants from, 68–69 GDP of, 18, 231 growth in, 64, 231, 247, 340 inherited debt in, 134 losses socialized in, 134, 156–57, 165 low debt in, 88 real estate bubble in, 108, 114–15, 126 surplus in, 17, 88 taxes in, 142–43, 376 trade deficits in, 119 unemployment in, 178 irrational exuberance, 14, 114, 116–17, 149, 334, 359 ISIS, 319 Italian bonds, 114, 165, 323 Italy, 6, 14, 16, 120, 125, 331, 343 austerity opposed in, 59 GDP per capita in, 352 growth in, 247 sovereign spread of, 200 Japan, 151, 333, 342 bubble in, 359 debt of, 202 growth in, 78 quantitative easing used by, 151, 359 shrinking working-age population of, 70 Java, unemployment on, 230 jobs gap, 120 Juncker, Jean-Claude, 228 Keynes, John Maynard, 118, 120, 172, 187, 351 convergence policy suggested by, 254 Keynesian economics, 64, 95, 108, 153, 253 King, Mervyn, 390 knowledge, 137, 138–39, 337–38 Kohl, Helmut, 6–7, 337 krona, 287 labor, marginal product of, 356 labor laws, 75 labor markets, 9, 74 friction in, 336 reforms of, 214, 221 labor movement, 26, 40, 125, 134–36, 320 austerity and, 140 capital flows and, 135 see also migration labor rights, 56 Lamers, Karl, 314 Lancaster, Kelvin, 27 land tax, 191 Latin America, 10, 55, 95, 112, 202 lost decade in, 168 Latvia, 331, 346 GDP of, 92 law of diminishing returns, 40 learning by doing, 77 Lehman Brothers, 182 lender of last resort, 85, 362, 368 lending, 280, 380 discriminatory, 283 predatory, 274, 310 lending rates, 278 leverage, 102 Lichtenstein, 44 Lipsey, Richard, 27 liquidity, 201, 264, 278, 354 ECB’s expansion of, 256 lira, 14 Lithuania, 331 living standards, 68–70 loans: contraction of, 126–27, 246 nonperforming, 241 for small and medium-size businesses, 246–47 lobbyists, from financial sector, 132 location, 76 London interbank lending rate (LIBOR), 131, 355 Long-Term Refinancing Operation, 360–361 Lucas, Robert, xi Luxembourg, 6, 94, 142–43, 331, 343 as tax avoidance center, 228, 261 luxury cars, 265 Maastricht Treaty, xiii, 6, 87, 115, 146, 244, 298, 339, 340 macro-prudential regulations, 249 Malta, 331, 340 manufacturing, 89, 223–24 market failures, 48–49, 86, 148, 149, 335 rigidities, 101 tax policy’s correction of, 193 market fundamentalism, see neoliberalism market irrationality, 110, 125–26, 149 markets, limitations of, 10 Meade, James, 27 Medicaid, 91 medical care, 196 Medicare, 90, 91 Mellon, Andrew, 95 Memorandum of Agreement, 233–34 Merkel, Angela, 186 Mexico, 202, 369 bailout of, 113 in NAFTA, xiv Middle East, 321 migrant crisis, 44 migration, 26, 40, 68–69, 90, 125, 320–21, 334–35, 342, 356, 393 unemployment and, 69, 90, 135, 140 see also labor movement military power, 36–37 milk, 218, 223, 230 minimum wage, 42, 120, 254, 255, 351 mining, 257 Mississippi, GDP of, 92 Mitsotakis, Constantine, 377–78 Mitsotakis, Kyriakos, 377–78 Mitterrand, François, 6–7 monetarism, 167–68, 169, 364 monetary policy, 24, 85–86, 148, 264, 325, 345, 364 as allegedly technocratic, 146, 161–62 conservative theory of, 151, 153 in early 1980s US, 168, 210 flexibility of, 244 in global financial crisis, 151 political nature of, 146, 153–54 recent developments in theory of, 166–73 see also interest rates monetary union, see single currencies money laundering, 354 monopolists, privatization and, 194 moral hazard, 202, 203 mortgage rates, 170 mortgages, 302 multinational chains, 219 multinational development banks, 137 multinationals, 127, 223, 376 multipliers, 211–12, 248 balanced-budget, 188–90, 265 Mundell, Robert, 87 mutual insurance, 247 mutualization of debt, 242–43, 263 national development banks, 137–38 natural monopolies, 55 natural rate hypothesis, 172 negative shocks, 248 neoliberalism, xvi, 24–26, 33, 34, 98–99, 109, 257, 265, 332–33, 335, 354 on bubbles, 381 and capital flows, 28 and central bank independence, 162–63 in Germany, 10 inequality increased by, xviii low inflation desired by, 147 recent scholarship against, 24 Netherlands, 6, 44, 292, 331, 339–40, 343 European Constitution referendum of, 58 New Democracy Party, Greek, 61, 185, 377–78 New Mediocre, 264 New World, 148 New Zealand, 364 Nokia, 81, 234, 297 nonaccelerating inflation rate of unemployment (NAIRU), 379–80 nonaccelerating wage rate of unemployment (NAWRU), 379–80 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), 276 nonperforming loans, 241 nontraded goods sector, 102, 103, 169, 213, 217, 359 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), xiv North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), 196 Norway, 12, 44, 307 referendum on joining EU, 58 nuclear deterrence, 38 Obama, Barack, 319 oil, import of, 230 oil firms, 36 oil prices, 89, 168, 259, 359 oligarchs: in Greece, 16, 227 in Russia, 280 optimal currency area, 345 output, 70–71, 111 after recessions, 76 Outright Monetary Transactions program, 361 overregulate, 132 Oxfam, 72 panic of 1907, 147 Papandreou, Andreas, 366 Papandreou, George, xiv, 60–61, 184, 185, 220, 221, 226–27, 309, 312, 366, 373 reform of banks suggested by, 229 paradox of thrift, 120 peace, 34 pensions, 9, 16, 78, 177, 188, 197–98, 226, 276, 370 People’s Party, Portugal, 392 periphery, 14, 32, 171, 200, 296, 301, 318 see also specific countries peseta, 14 pharmacies, 218–20 Phishing for Phools (Akerlof and Shiller), 132 physical capital, 77–78 Pinochet, Augusto, 152–53 place-based debt, 134, 242 Pleios, George, 377 Poland, 46, 333, 339 assistance to, 243 in Iraq War, 37 police, 41 political integration, xvi, 34, 35 economic integration vs., 51–57 politics, economics and, 308–18 pollution, 260 populism, xx Portugal, 14, 16, 64, 177, 178, 331, 343, 346 austerity opposed by, 59, 207–8, 315, 332, 392 GDP of, 92 IMF bailout of, 178–79 loans in, 127 poverty in, 261 sovereign spread of, 200 Portuguese bonds, 179 POSCO, 55 pound, 287, 335, 346 poverty, 72 in Greece, 226, 261 in Portugal, 261 in Spain, 261 predatory lending, 274, 310 present discount value, 343 Price of Inequality, The (Stiglitz), 154 prices, 19, 24 adjustment of, 48, 338, 361 price stability, 161 primary deficit, 188, 389 primary surpluses, 187–88 private austerity, 126–27, 241–42 private sector involvement, 113 privatization, 55, 194–96, 369 production costs, 39, 43, 50 production function, 343 productivity, 71, 332, 348 in manufacturing, 223–24 after recessions, 76–77 programs, 17–18 Germany’s design of, 53, 60, 61, 187–88, 205, 336, 338 imposed on Greece, xv, 21, 27, 60–62, 140, 155–56, 179–80, 181, 182–83, 184–85, 187–88, 190–93, 195–96, 197–98, 202–3, 205, 206, 214–16, 218–23, 225–28, 229, 230, 231, 233–34, 273, 278, 308, 309–11, 312, 315–16, 336, 338 of Troika, 17–18, 21, 155–57, 179–80, 181, 182–83, 184–85, 187–93, 196, 202, 205, 207, 208, 214–16, 217, 218–23, 225–28, 229, 231, 233–34, 273, 278, 308, 309–11, 312, 313, 314, 315–16, 323–24, 346, 366, 379, 392 progressive automatic stabilizers, 244 progressive taxes, 248 property rights, 24 property taxes, 192–93, 227 public entities, 195 public goods, 40, 337–38 quantitative easing (QE), 151, 164, 165–66, 170–72, 264, 359, 361, 386 railroads, 55 Reagan, Ronald, 168, 209 real estate bubble, 25, 108, 109, 111, 114–15, 126, 148, 172, 250, 301, 302 cause of, 198 real estate investment, 199 real exchange rate, 105–6, 215–16 recessions, recovery from, 94–95 recovery, 76 reform, 75 theories of, 27–28 regulations, 24, 149, 152, 162, 250, 354, 355–356, 378 and Bush administration, 250–51 common, 241 corporate opposition to, xvi difficulties in, 132–33 of finance, xix forbearance on, 130–31 importance of, 152–53 macro-prudential, 249 in race to bottom, 131–34 Reinhardt, Carmen, 210 renewable energy, 193, 229–30 Republican Party, US, 319 research and development (R&D), 77, 138, 217, 251, 317–18 Ricardo, David, 40, 41 risk, 104, 153, 285 excessive, 250 risk markets, 27 Rogoff, Kenneth, 210 Romania, 46, 331, 338 Royal Bank of Scotland, 355 rules, 57, 241–42, 262, 296 Russia, 36, 264, 296 containment of, 318 economic rents in, 280 gas from, 37, 81, 93, 378 safety nets, 99, 141, 223 Samaras, Antonis, 61, 309, 377 savings, 120 global, 257 savings and loan crisis, 360 Schäuble, Wolfgang, 57, 220, 314, 317 Schengen area, 44 schools, 41, 196 Schröeder, Gerhard, 254 self-regulation, 131, 159 service sector, 224 shadow banking system, 133 shareholder capitalism, 21 Shiller, Rob, 132, 359 shipping taxes, 227, 228 short-termism, 77, 258–59 Silicon Valley, 224 silver, 275, 277 single currencies: conflicts and, 38 as entailing fixed exchange rates, 8, 42–43, 46–47, 86–87, 92, 93, 94, 97–98 external imbalances and, 97–98 and financial crises, 110–18 integration and, 45–46, 50 interest rates and, 8, 86, 87–88, 92, 93, 94 Mundell’s work on, 87 requirements for, 5, 52–53, 88–89, 92–94, 97–98 and similarities among countries, 15 trade integration vs., 393 in US, 35, 36, 88, 89–92 see also euro single-market principle, 125–26, 231 skilled workers, 134–35 skills, 77 Slovakia, 331 Slovenia, 331 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), 127, 138, 171, 229 small and medium-size lending facility, 246–47, 300, 301, 382 Small Business Administration, 246 small businesses, 153 Smith, Adam, xviii, 24, 39–40, 41 social cohesion, 22 Social Democratic Party, Portugal, 392 social program, 196 Social Security, 90, 91 social solidarity, xix societal capital, 77–78 solar energy, 193, 229 solidarity fund, 373 solidarity fund for stabilization, 244, 254, 264, 301 Soros, George, 390 South Dakota, 90, 346 South Korea, 55 bailout of, 113 sovereign risk, 14, 353 sovereign spreads, 200 sovereign wealth funds, 258 Soviet Union, 10 Spain, 14, 16, 114, 177, 178, 278, 331, 335, 343 austerity opposed by, 59, 207–8, 315 bank bailout of, 179, 199–200, 206 banks in, 23, 186, 199, 200, 242, 270, 354 debt of, 196 debt-to-GDP ratio of, 231 deficits of, 109 economic growth in, 215, 231, 247 gold supply in, 277 independence movement in, xi inequality in, 72, 212, 225–26 inherited debt in, 134 labor reforms proposed for, 155 loans in, 127 low debt in, 87 poverty in, 261 real estate bubble in, 25, 108, 109, 114–15, 126, 198, 301, 302 regional independence demanded in, 307 renewable energy in, 229 sovereign spread of, 200 spread in, 332 structural reform in, 70 surplus in, 17, 88 threat of breakup of, 270 trade deficits in, 81, 119 unemployment in, 63, 161, 231, 235, 332, 338 Spanish bonds, 114, 199, 200 spending, cutting, 196–98 spread, 332 stability, 147, 172, 261, 301, 364 automatic, 244 bubble and, 264 central banks and, 8 as collective action problem, 246 solidarity fund for, 54, 244, 264 Stability and Growth Pact, 245 standard models, 211–13 state development banks, 138 steel companies, 55 stock market, 151 stock market bubble, 200–201 stock market crash (1929), 18, 95 stock options, 259, 359 structural deficit, 245 Structural Funds, 243 structural impediments, 215 structural realignment, 252–56 structural reforms, 9, 18, 19–20, 26–27, 214–36, 239–71, 307 from austerity to growth, 263–65 banking union, 241–44 and climate change, 229–30 common framework for stability, 244–52 counterproductive, 222–23 debt restructuring and, 265–67 of finance, 228–29 full employment and growth, 256–57 in Greece, 20, 70, 188, 191, 214–36 growth and, 232–35 shared prosperity and, 260–61 and structural realignment, 252–56 of trade deficits, 216–17 trauma of, 224 as trivial, 214–15, 217–20, 233 subsidiarity, 8, 41–42, 263 subsidies: agricultural, 45, 197 energy, 197 sudden stops, 111 Suharto, 314 suicide, 82, 344 Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), 91 supply-side effects: in Greece, 191, 215–16 of investments, 367 surpluses, fiscal, 17, 96, 312, 379 primary, 187–88 surpluses, trade, see trade surpluses “Swabian housewife,” 186, 245 Sweden, 12, 46, 307, 313, 331, 335, 339 euro referendum of, 58 refugees into, 320 Switzerland, 44, 307 Syria, 321, 342 Syriza party, 309, 311, 312–13, 315, 377 Taiwan, 55 tariffs, 40 tax avoiders, 74, 142–43, 227–28, 261 taxes, 142, 290, 315 in Canada, 191 on capital, 356 on carbon, 230, 260, 265, 368 consumption, 193–94 corporate, 189–90, 227, 251 cross-border, 319, 384 and distortions, 191 in EU, 8, 261 and fiat currency, 284 and free mobility of goods and capital, 260–61 in Greece, 16, 142, 192, 193–94, 227, 367–68 ideal system for, 191 IMF’s warning about high, 190 income, 45 increase in, 190–94 inequality and, 191 inheritance, 368 land, 191 on luxury cars, 265 progressive, 248 property, 192–93, 227 Reagan cuts to, 168, 210 shipping, 227, 228 as stimulative, 368 on trade surpluses, 254 value-added, 190, 192 tax evasion, in Greece, 190–91 tax laws, 75 tax revenue, 190–96 Taylor, John, 169 Taylor rule, 169 tech bubble, 250 technology, 137, 138–39, 186, 211, 217, 251, 258, 265, 300 and new financial system, 274–76, 283–84 telecoms, 55 Telmex, 369 terrorism, 319 Thailand, 113 theory of the second best, 27–28, 48 “there is no alternative” (TINA), 306, 311–12 Tocqueville, Alexis de, xiii too-big-to-fail banks, 360 tourism, 192, 286 trade: and contractionary expansion, 209 US push for, 323 trade agreements, xiv–xvi, 357 trade balance, 81, 93, 100, 109 as allegedly self-correcting, 98–99, 101–3 and wage flexibility, 104–5 trade barriers, 40 trade deficits, 89, 139 aggregate demand weakened by, 111 chit solution to, 287–88, 290, 299–300, 387, 388–89 control of, 109–10, 122 with currency pegs, 110 and fixed exchange rates, 107–8, 118 and government spending, 107–8, 108 of Greece, 81, 194, 215–16, 222, 285–86 structural reform of, 216–17 traded goods, 102, 103, 216 trade integration, 393 trade surpluses, 88, 118–21, 139–40, 350–52 discouragement of, 282–84, 299–300 of Germany, 118–19, 120, 139, 253, 293, 299, 350–52, 381–82, 391 tax on, 254, 351, 381–82 Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, xv, 323 transfer price system, 376 Trans-Pacific Partnership, xv, 323 Treasury bills, US, 204 Trichet, Jean-Claude, 100–101, 155, 156, 164–65, 251 trickle-down economics, 362 Troika, 19, 20, 26, 55, 56, 58, 60, 69, 99, 101–3, 117, 119, 135, 140–42, 178, 179, 184, 195, 274, 294, 317, 362, 370–71, 373, 376, 377, 386 banks weakened by, 229 conditions of, 201 discretion of, 262 failure to learn, 312 Greek incomes lowered by, 80 Greek loan set up by, 202 inequality created by, 225–26 poor forecasting of, 307 predictions by, 249 primary surpluses and, 187–88 privatization avoided by, 194 programs of, 17–18, 21, 155–57, 179–80, 181, 182–83, 184–85, 187–93, 196, 197–98, 202, 204, 205, 207, 208, 214–16, 217, 218–23, 225–28, 229, 231, 233–34, 273, 278, 308, 309–11, 312, 313, 314, 315–16, 323–24, 348, 366, 379, 392 social contract torn up by, 78 structural reforms imposed by, 214–16, 217, 218–23, 225–38 tax demand of, 192 and tax evasion, 367 see also European Central Bank (ECB); European Commission; International Monetary Fund (IMF) trust, xix, 280 Tsipras, Alexis, 61–62, 221, 273, 314 Turkey, 321 UBS, 355 Ukraine, 36 unemployment, 3, 64, 68, 71–72, 110, 111, 122, 323, 336, 342 as allegedly self-correcting, 98–101 in Argentina, 267 austerity and, 209 central banks and, 8, 94, 97, 106, 147 ECB and, 163 in eurozone, 71, 135, 163, 177–78, 181, 331 and financing investments, 186 in Finland, 296 and future income, 77 in Greece, xi, 71, 236, 267, 331, 338, 342 increased by capital, 264 interest rates and, 43–44 and internal devaluation, 98–101, 104–6 migration and, 69, 90, 135, 140 natural rate of, 172–73 present-day, in Europe, 210 and rise of Hitler, 338, 358 and single currency, 88 in Spain, 63, 161, 231, 235, 332, 338 and structural reforms, 19 and trade deficits, 108 in US, 3 youth, 3, 64, 71 unemployment insurance, 91, 186, 246, 247–48 UNICEF, 72–73 unions, 101, 254, 335 United Kingdom, 14, 44, 46, 131, 307, 331, 332, 340 colonies of, 36 debt of, 202 inflation target set in, 157 in Iraq War, 37 light regulations in, 131 proposed exit from EU by, 4, 270 United Nations, 337, 350, 384–85 creation of, 38 and lower rates of war, 196 United States: banking system in, 91 budget of, 8, 45 and Canada’s 1990 expansion, 209 Canada’s free trade with, 45–46, 47 central bank governance in, 161 debt-to-GDP of, 202, 210–11 financial crisis originating in, 65, 68, 79–80, 128, 296, 302 financial system in, 228 founding of, 319 GDP of, xiii Germany’s borrowing from, 187 growing working-age population of, 70 growth in, 68 housing bubble in, 108 immigration into, 320 migration in, 90, 136, 346 monetary policy in financial crisis of, 151 in NAFTA, xiv 1980–1981 recessions in, 76 predatory lending in, 310 productivity in, 71 recovery of, xiii, 12 rising inequality in, xvii, 333 shareholder capitalism of, 21 Small Business Administration in, 246 structural reforms needed in, 20 surpluses in, 96, 187 trade agenda of, 323 unemployment in, 3, 178 united currency in, 35, 36, 88, 89–92 United States bonds, 350 unskilled workers, 134–35 value-added tax, 190, 192 values, 57–58 Varoufakis, Yanis, 61, 221, 309 velocity of circulation, 167 Venezuela, 371 Versaille, Treaty of, 187 victim blaming, 9, 15–17, 177–78, 309–11 volatility: and capital market integration, 28 in exchange rates, 48–49 Volcker, Paul, 157, 168 wage adjustments, 100–101, 103, 104–5, 155, 216–17, 220–22, 338, 361 wages, 19, 348 expansionary policies on, 284–85 Germany’s constraining of, 41, 42–43 lowered in Germany, 105, 333 wage stagnation, in Germany, 13 war, change in attitude to, 38, 196 Washington Consensus, xvi Washington Mutual, 91 wealth, divergence in, 139–40 Weil, Jonathan, 360 welfare, 196 West Germany, 6 Whitney, Meredith, 360 wind energy, 193, 229 Wolf, Martin, 385 worker protection, 56 workers’ bargaining rights, 19, 221, 255 World Bank, xv, xvii, 10, 61, 337, 357, 371 World Trade Organization, xiv youth: future of, xx–xxi unemployment of, 3, 64, 71 Zapatero, José Luis Rodríguez, xiv, 155, 362 zero lower bound, 106 ALSO BY JOSEPH E.


pages: 357 words: 95,986

Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work by Nick Srnicek, Alex Williams

3D printing, additive manufacturing, air freight, algorithmic trading, anti-work, back-to-the-land, banking crisis, basic income, battle of ideas, blockchain, Boris Johnson, Bretton Woods, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, centre right, collective bargaining, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, deskilling, Doha Development Round, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ferguson, Missouri, financial independence, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of work, gender pay gap, housing crisis, income inequality, industrial robot, informal economy, intermodal, Internet Archive, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kickstarter, late capitalism, liberation theology, Live Aid, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market design, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, mass incarceration, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, Mont Pelerin Society, neoliberal agenda, New Urbanism, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, patent troll, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, post scarcity, post-work, postnationalism / post nation state, precariat, price stability, profit motive, quantitative easing, reshoring, Richard Florida, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Slavoj Žižek, social web, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, surplus humans, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, wages for housework, We are the 99%, women in the workforce, working poor, working-age population

Our preference is for the establishment of a three-day weekend, rather than a reduction in the working day, in order to cut down on commuting and to build upon the long holiday weekends already in existence. This demand can be achieved in a number of ways – through trade union struggles, pressure from social movements, and legislative change by political parties. Trade unions building a strategy for the future, rather than accepting the capitalist demand for jobs at all costs, could use collective bargaining to accept automation in return for a shorter working week. Indeed, the historical record suggests that trade unions are often reactive in the face of technological change, and that wage concessions only delay automation, rather than preventing it.80 An alternative approach that focused on the reduction and diffusion of work could reduce work without leaving workers out on the streets.81 Efforts can also be made to gain recognition for unofficial, unpaid labour as part of the working week, reducing it simply by bringing attention to it.82 A focus on a shorter working week also requires that unions build links with part-time and precarious workers.

We believe many unions will be better served by refocusing towards a post-work society and the liberating aspects of a reduced working week, job sharing and a basic income.55 The West Coast longshoremen in the United States represent one successful example of allowing automation in exchange for guaranteeing higher wages and less job cuts (though they also occupy a key point of leverage in the capitalist infrastructure).56 The Chicago Teachers’ Union offers another example of a union going far beyond collective bargaining, and instead mobilising a broad social movement around the state of education in general. Moreover, shifting in a post-work direction overcomes some of the key impasses between ecological movements and organised labour. The deployment of productivity increases for more free time, rather than increased jobs and output, can bring these groups together. Changing the aims of unions and organising community-wide will help to turn unions away from classic – and now failing – social democratic goals, and will be essential to any successful renewal of the labour movement.

This produces a reduction of the labour supply, as was achieved by the exclusionary unions above, but with an important difference. Rather than relying on excluding particular groups from skilled trades, the tactic of reducing working hours relies on withdrawing a portion of everyone’s labour time.76 For various reasons, though – not least because of the postwar consensus between capital and labour – this tactic fell out of favour, and the labour movement’s attention instead turned towards collective bargaining over pay. As we argued earlier, however, this tactic has the potential to be revived in the effort to transform our socioeconomic system. Another key tactic has been strikes, whose logic is to inflict costs on capital and force its hand in negotiations. But this approach was limited by the fact that unskilled labour could be easily replaced with new (and more docile) scab workers. Strikes also allow employers to use the downtime to bring in new machinery – precisely the changes which workers may be struggling against.


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The Globalization Paradox: Democracy and the Future of the World Economy by Dani Rodrik

affirmative action, Asian financial crisis, bank run, banking crisis, bilateral investment treaty, borderless world, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collective bargaining, colonial rule, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, Doha Development Round, en.wikipedia.org, endogenous growth, eurozone crisis, financial deregulation, financial innovation, floating exchange rates, frictionless, frictionless market, full employment, George Akerlof, guest worker program, Hernando de Soto, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, industrial cluster, information asymmetry, joint-stock company, Kenneth Rogoff, land reform, liberal capitalism, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, margin call, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, microcredit, Monroe Doctrine, moral hazard, night-watchman state, non-tariff barriers, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open borders, open economy, Paul Samuelson, price stability, profit maximization, race to the bottom, regulatory arbitrage, savings glut, Silicon Valley, special drawing rights, special economic zone, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Tobin tax, too big to fail, trade liberalization, trade route, transaction costs, tulip mania, Washington Consensus, World Values Survey

This presumption contributes to our bias in favor of technical progress because it reduces, if not eliminates altogether, the concern that the playing field was tilted against the loser. Free trade is different. Firms abroad can obtain a competitive advantage not only because they are more productive or labor is more abundant (and hence cheaper), but also because they prevent their workers from engaging in collective bargaining, they have to comply with lower health and safety standards, or they are subsidized by their governments. This is another important way in which differences in institutional arrangements across nations generate opposition and create frictions in international trade. A second difference is that the adverse effects of new technologies hit different groups over time, so that one can plausibly argue that most, if not all people are made better off over the long run.

Every advanced economy has detailed regulations that cover employment practices. These regulations dictate who can work, the minimum wage, the maximum hours of work, the nature of working conditions, what the employer can ask the worker to do, and how easily the worker can be fired. They guarantee the worker’s freedom to form unions to represent his or her interests and set the rules under which collective bargaining can take place over pay and benefits. From a classical liberal standpoint, most of these regulations make little sense. They interfere with an individual’s right to enter into contracts of his or her choosing. If you are willing to work for 70 hours a week below the minimum wage under unsafe conditions and allow the employer to dismiss you at will, why should the state prevent you from accepting such terms?

Minimum wages that are significantly lower than in rich countries can be rationalized in the domestic debate by pointing to lower labor productivity and living standards. Lax child-labor regulations are often justified by the argument that it is not feasible or desirable to withdraw young workers from the labor force in a country with widespread poverty. In other cases, arguments like these carry less weight. Basic labor rights such as non-discrimination, freedom of association, collective bargaining, and prohibition of forced labor do not cost anything. Compliance with these rights does not harm, and indeed possibly benefits, economic development. Gross violations constitute exploitation of labor, and will open the door for safeguards in importing countries on the ground that they generate unfair distributional costs. Generalizing the safeguards agreement in this fashion would have its risks.


The Rise and Decline of Nations: Economic Growth, Stagflation, and Social Rigidities by Mancur Olson

"Robert Solow", barriers to entry, British Empire, business cycle, California gold rush, collective bargaining, correlation coefficient, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, full employment, income per capita, Kenneth Arrow, market clearing, Norman Macrae, Pareto efficiency, price discrimination, profit maximization, rent-seeking, Sam Peltzman, selection bias, Simon Kuznets, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade liberalization, transaction costs, urban decay, working poor

The theory implies that in sectors where there is special-interest organization there will be more stickiness, and (because of Implication 3) in industries where there is a fairly small number of firms that can collude more easily, there will on average be less price flexibility than in industries with so many firms that they cannot collude without selective incentives. Those large groups that are organized because of selective incentives may have even slower decision-making. The sluggish movement of wages that are set by collective bargaining is well known. Wage flexibility appears to be particularly great in temporary markets where organization is pretty much ruled out, as in the markets for seasonal workers, consultants, and so on. There also appears to be less flexibility in manufacturing prices than in farm prices (except when farm prices are determined by governments under the influence of lobbies). This has been noted by observant monetarists as well as by Keynesians.

For example, some of the construction and manufacturing activities that have strong unions and high wages are also sensitive to the business cycle and accordingly have unstable employment patterns. X Implication 6 also tells us something about how those prices and wages influenced by special-interest groups will react to unexpected inflation or deflation. A cartel or lobby will seek whatever price it believes best, but for the reasons explained in chapter 3 it will seek agreements or arrangements that last for some length of time. Collective bargaining agreements in the United States offer a clear, though perhaps extreme, example of this; they customarily last for three years. Now suppose that there is unexpected inflation or deflation. With unexpected inflation the price the special-interest group obtained will become lower in relation to other prices than the group wanted or expected it to be, but the group will not quickly be able to change the relevant agreement or legislation.

The Norris-LaGuardia Act of 1932 ended the use of the powers of courts to limit combination in the labor market. Then came the National Recovery Administration (NRA) created in 1933. It not only allowed but enthusiastically encouraged each industry to set up a "code of fair competition" and a "code authority." The codes of fair competition typically required "fair" behavior with respect to output, prices, and various trade prices, and also "fair" wages, hours of work, collective bargaining, and so forth. It is estimated that 95 percent of industrial employees came to be covered by these codes.34 Although the NRA also stipulated minimum wages and rules against wage-cutting, the interests of the trade associations of business firms seemed more significant. As Franklin Roosevelt later described it, the "codes were developed, as a matter of Administration policy, from proposals initiated from within the industries themselves.


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Ghost Work: How to Stop Silicon Valley From Building a New Global Underclass by Mary L. Gray, Siddharth Suri

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Amazon Mechanical Turk, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, big-box store, bitcoin, blue-collar work, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, collective bargaining, computer vision, corporate social responsibility, crowdsourcing, data is the new oil, deindustrialization, deskilling, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, employer provided health coverage, en.wikipedia.org, equal pay for equal work, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial independence, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, future of work, gig economy, glass ceiling, global supply chain, hiring and firing, ImageNet competition, industrial robot, informal economy, information asymmetry, Jeff Bezos, job automation, knowledge economy, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, market friction, Mars Rover, natural language processing, new economy, passive income, pattern recognition, post-materialism, post-work, race to the bottom, Rana Plaza, recommendation engine, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Coase, Second Machine Age, sentiment analysis, sharing economy, Shoshana Zuboff, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, software as a service, speech recognition, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, The Future of Employment, The Nature of the Firm, transaction costs, two-sided market, union organizing, universal basic income, Vilfredo Pareto, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Y Combinator

Ghost work is arguably just the most recent iteration of a well-established historical trend. 2 From Piecework to Outsourcing: A Brief History of Automation’s Last Mile The National Labor Relations Act of 1935, authored by New York senator Robert F. Wagner, became the first piece of federal legislation in the United States to guarantee the basic right of workers to form unions, collectively bargain, and strike for better work conditions. Most think of the Wagner Act as the country’s first publicly mandated social contract and safety net for modern employment. But defining workers’ rights and weaving them into the nation’s fabric actually started a century before that. A thin, almost invisible thread connects the fates of 19th-century factory workers addressed by the Wagner Act and today’s on-demand workers left unprotected by it.

Unions established their base in mining and manufacturing, after the passage of the National Labor Relations Act of 1935 and the Fair Labor Standards Act, three years later. At the time, close to 25 million U.S. workers belonged to a union. But efforts to expand to other industries stalled for the next decade in the face of World War II. The war effort diverted young men away from factories to the front lines of Europe. Unions felt that they had lost their core membership. Several unions brokered deals with employers and agreed to delay strikes and collective bargaining efforts until after the war. The famed image of Rosie the Riveter could easily stand in for the temp worker keeping the metal, transportation, and chemical industries alive during the war. She was expected to go back home once her brother or sweetheart came back from the war. As such, unions did not see a need to argue for expanding workers’ rights until men returned to their roles as the primary breadwinners working full-time on the line.17 Once the war ended and manufacturing industries ramped up production lines for new products in glass, plastics, and metal, unions got back to work, too.

The sharp growth in readily available internet connections, combined with a native English-speaking workforce and its long history of advanced educational training centers in science and engineering, made India the first epicenter of business process outsourcing (BPO). But outsourcing was never simply about cost cutting. It was also about the growing resistance to unionization and evading long-standing labor regulations. As companies expanded their reliance on a far-flung network of contingent staff, they shrank the number of on-site, full-time employees who were eligible to collectively bargain or to push for increasing workers’ benefits. Following a largely untested management theory, a wave of corporations in the 1980s cut anything that could be defined as “non-essential business operations”—from cleaning offices to debugging software programs—in order to impress stockholders with their true value, defined in terms of “return on investment” (in industry lingo, ROI) and “core competencies.”


pages: 173 words: 52,725

How to Be Right: In a World Gone Wrong by James O'Brien

Boris Johnson, clockwatching, collective bargaining, death of newspapers, Donald Trump, game design, housing crisis, mass immigration, plutocrats, Plutocrats, post-industrial society, QAnon, ride hailing / ride sharing, sexual politics, young professional

While the paper’s owners insisted that the decision had nothing to do with the UVW’s actions, or the petition, or the threatened strike, March 2018 saw the cleaners secure the desired pay rises. So, a newspaper which routinely peddles the notion that immigration drives down the wages of ‘ordinary’ workers had its offices cleaned by adults earning about £15,600 a year, while its editor received £2.37 million. And when collective bargaining, under the auspices of a trade union, appeared to secure precisely the sort of pay rises Daily Mail readers are routinely told they are being denied by immigration, the paper’s owners passed it all off as a remarkable coincidence. You will, needless to say, struggle to find any mention of this episode in any right-wing British newspaper because right-wing British newspapers despise trade unions, and the complete demonisation of immigrants in the workplace can obviously only work when carried out in tandem with the demonisation of trade unions.

Arthur is, understandably, a very angry man and the target for his anger, with heartbreaking predictability, is immigration. He has persuaded himself that the only reason why he and his driver’s mate have to endure such punitive and degrading working conditions is because some people who were born overseas also endure such punitive and degrading working conditions. Suggest to him that the real source of his impotence is a dearth of trade union power and collective bargaining and he will decry you as a ‘leftie’ before returning to the comforting banality of bogus immigrant-blaming. The company whose vans he pays to drive is a household name. I wonder how many of their customers know the terms and conditions inflicted upon the people delivering their washing machines. Wayne’s situation is similar. His work installing state-subsidised, environmental improvements in homes is more satisfying, but he is almost as exposed as Arthur to the vagaries of modern, largely invisible, employment practices.


pages: 585 words: 151,239

Capitalism in America: A History by Adrian Wooldridge, Alan Greenspan

"Robert Solow", 2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, air freight, Airbnb, airline deregulation, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Asian financial crisis, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business climate, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, Charles Lindbergh, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, creative destruction, credit crunch, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, edge city, Elon Musk, equal pay for equal work, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, full employment, George Gilder, germ theory of disease, global supply chain, hiring and firing, income per capita, indoor plumbing, informal economy, interchangeable parts, invention of the telegraph, invention of the telephone, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, Kitchen Debate, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market bubble, Mason jar, mass immigration, means of production, Menlo Park, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, Northern Rock, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, popular capitalism, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, price stability, Productivity paradox, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, refrigerator car, reserve currency, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, savings glut, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Simon Kuznets, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strikebreaker, supply-chain management, The Great Moderation, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade route, transcontinental railway, tulip mania, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, urban sprawl, Vannevar Bush, War on Poverty, washing machines reduced drudgery, Washington Consensus, white flight, wikimedia commons, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Yom Kippur War, young professional

AD SPENDING 1919 – 2007 The most ambitious managers advocated “welfare capitalism”—that is, providing their workers with pension plans, health-care benefits, and profit-sharing plans. George Johnson, a shoe entrepreneur, introduced an eight-hour workday, a forty-hour workweek, and comprehensive medical care. Philip Wrigley proved that he could embrace social reform and make gum at the same time by introducing an income insurance plan and a pension system. Lewis Brown, an asbestos magnate, introduced collective bargaining, the eight-hour workday, a forty-hour workweek, and regular surveys of employee opinion.19 These new professionally managed corporations extended their reign into new areas such as distribution and retail. Chain stores that specialized in no-frills services expanded rapidly in the 1920s, using their massive scale to put pressure on their suppliers and their national footprint to reach into the expanding suburbs.

Before the New Deal, America had been exceptional in its suspicion of big government in general and federal government in particular: the government was smaller than in most European countries and power was widely dispersed among lots of subsidiary levels of government. After the New Deal, the federal government sat at the heart of American society. In short: FDR inherited a highly decentralized political economy committed to flexible markets and transformed it into a Washington-dominated political economy committed to demand management, national welfare programs, and compulsory collective bargaining. The most obvious change was in size: in 1930, the federal government consumed less than 4 percent of GDP and the largest government employer was the Post Office. Only a tiny minority of Americans—4 million in 1929 and 3.7 million in 1930—paid income tax.34 By 1936, the federal government consumed 9 percent of GDP and employed 7 percent of the workforce. FDR was also busy broadening the tax base.

The NRA was a strange beast: in part a capitalist version of the Soviet Union’s Gosplan, in part an all-American version of Mussolini’s corporatist capitalism that tried to cartelize firms that made up four-fifths of the nonagricultural economy.39 The NRA encouraged big businesses to collaborate to set the prices of their products and the wages and prices that went into making them. The NRA also required firms to pay higher wages and accept compulsory collective bargaining. Firms that complied with these strictures were allowed to display a blue eagle insignia: more than 2 million quickly signed up. Firms that failed to comply with the rules were often driven out of business. Blue eagle signs soon became ubiquitous in store windows and on billboards. Hugh Johnson, the former general who was put in charge of the NRA, became one of the most recognizable men in America.


pages: 207 words: 52,716

Capitalism 3.0: A Guide to Reclaiming the Commons by Peter Barnes

Albert Einstein, car-free, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate personhood, corporate raider, corporate social responsibility, dark matter, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, hypertext link, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, jitney, money market fund, new economy, patent troll, profit maximization, Ronald Coase, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, War on Poverty, Yogi Berra

If we were to analyze the expansion of American birthrights, we’d see a series of waves. The first wave consisted of rights against the state. The second included rights against unequal treatment based on race, nationality, gender, or sexual orientation. The third wave— which, historically speaking, is just beginning—consists of rights not against things, but for things—free public education, collective bargaining for wages, security in old age. They can be thought of as rights necessary for the pursuit of happiness. 104 | A SOLUTION What makes this latest wave of birthrights strengthen community is their universality. If some Americans could enjoy free public education while others couldn’t, the resulting inequities would divide rather than unite us as a nation. The universality of these rights puts everyone in the same boat.

Seuss), 10, 72, 73 General Electric (NBC), 125 General Social Survey, 29–30 George, Henry, 93–94 Glaxo Wellcome, 37 global atmospheric trust, 147–50 globalization, 28, 97 Index government bias towards property owners, 39 corporate dominance of, xv–xvi, 45, 47–48, 155 corporate/commons sector balance via the, 76–78, 162 limits of regulation, 35–39, 58, 59 and pollution rights, 39–42, 60–61 role in protecing the commons, x, 33–34, 47, 152–53 Grassley, Chuck, 37 Great Britain, 16–17, 109, 114, 118, 119 Great Plains, 142 “green taxes,” 39 groundwater trusts, 138 H Haggin, James, 18–19 Hammond, Jay, 46 happiness and community, 101 and property, 110 and surplus capitalism, 29–31, 65 as universal birthright, 103, 164 Hardin, Garrett, x, 7–8, 33, 49, 169n7 Hawken, Paul, 55 health care as birthright, xv, 104, 112–15, 157, 164 management of, 109, 153 pharmaceutical lobbyists, 36–37 universal health insurance, 113–15 Hickel, Walter, 19 Homestead Act of 1862, 18 Hurwitz, Charles, 53 I illth and the commons, 9–10, 19–20, 45 definition, 9 need to address, 12 and pollution rights, 58–59 and valve keepers, 88, 163 | 189 incentives, 13, 95 inclusivity, 6, 75 inequality and birthrights, 103–5 and capitalism, 26–29, 50, 65 and commons trusts, 88 and commons rent, 96–97 in distribution of wealth, 26–29, 105–6, 143–44 in Internet access, 126–28 “influence industry,” 36–38 infrastructure, as joint inheritance, 12, 71 inheritance tax, 110–11 intellectual property, 119 Internal Revenue Service, 112 Internet digital divide, 127 “net neutrality,” 128 as product of publicly funded research, 131 resource guide, 175–76 as social asset, 70–71, 75, 118, 126–28, 157 two-tiered Internet, 128 wi-fi access, 126, 140, 145 World Wide Web, 159 J Jefferson, Thomas, 103, 108, 110, 128–29 John, King of England, 16 joint stock corporation. See corporations K Kelly, Marjorie, 28–29, 80, 81 Kennedy, Robert F., Jr., 59–60 Kyoto Protocol, 148, 149 L labor and the bottom line, 50, 54, 80 collective bargaining, 103 decimation of unions, 47, 157 190 | Land Ordinance of 1785, 18, 44 land trusts, 136–37, 142–43, 147, 175 Lasn, Kalle, 122 lawyers, 160 liquidity of common property, 76 premium, 67–68, 71 live arts, 120–21 lobbyists, 35–39, 162 local food sources, 138–39, 165 local initiatives, 136–40 Locke, John, 16–17, 74, 103, 110, 119 Lorax, The (Seuss), 10, 72, 73 Losing Ground (Murray), 28 M Madison, James, 99, 108 Magna Carta, 16 managers and capitalism, 50, 157 enlightened, 51–54, 65 free market environmentalism, 59 shareholder activism, 56 trusts, 45, 83–84, 163 Marin Agricultural Land Trust (MALT), 85–86, 136 Massachusetts Climate Action Network, 140 Maxxam, 53 MBNA, 36 media companies, 19, 37, 121, 123–26, 145–46 Medicare, 37, 75, 130, 153 Mill, John Stuart, 93, 94 Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, 25 Mining Act of 1872, 43 Mississippi basin, 141–42 Monopoly (game), 8, 102, 106 Monsanto, 36 Morrill Land Grant College Act of 1862, 18, 44 multiple bottom lines, 51–53 municipal wi-fi, 126, 140 Murdoch, Rupert, 125 C A P I TA L I S M 3 . 0 Murray, Charles, 28 Music Performance Trust Fund, 121 N NAFTA (North America Free Trade Agreement), 81 National Science Foundation, 131 National Trust (Great Britain), 84 natural assets, 70 Natural Resources Defense Council, 59 nature and capitalism, 25–26, 50, 65, 80, 81 and the commons sector, 66, 165 corporate disregard of, 54 desperate state of, 3–4, 11, 25 duty to, 79–80 fortification of, 131, 165 as joint inheritance, 12 as part of the commons, 5–6 and pollution taxes, 39–42, 91 powerlessness of, 38–39 See also common property trusts; ecosystems; global atmospheric trust; nonhuman species Nature Conservancy, 73, 84, 143 NBC, 125 negative externalities.


pages: 242 words: 60,595

Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In by Roger Fisher, Bruce Patton

cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, rent control, sealed-bid auction, transaction costs, zero-sum game

Principled negotiation can be used by United States diplomats in arms control talks with the Soviet Union, by Wall Street lawyers representing Fortune 500 companies in antitrust cases, and by couples in deciding everything from where to go for vacation to how to divide their 6 property if they get divorced. Anyone can use this method. Every negotiation is different, but the basic elements do not change. Principled negotiation can be used whether there is one issue or several; two parties or many; whether there is a prescribed ritual, as in collective bargaining, or an impromptu free-for-all, as in talking with hijackers. The method applies whether the other side is more experienced or less, a hard bargainer or a friendly one. Principled negotiation is an all-purpose strategy. Unlike almost all other strategies, if the other side learns this one, it does not become more difficult to use; it becomes easier. If they read this book, all the better.

Does the government have standard specifications for these soil conditions? How deep are the foundations of other buildings in this area? What is the earthquake risk here? Where do you suggest we look for standards to resolve this question?" It is no easier to build a good contract than it is to build strong foundations. If relying on objective standards applies so clearly to a negotiation between the house owner and a contractor, why not to business deals, collective bargaining, legal settlements, and international negotiations? Why not insist that a negotiated price, for example, be based on some standard such as market value, replacement cost, depreciated book value, or competitive prices, instead of whatever the seller demands? In short, the approach is to commit yourself to reaching a solution based on principle, not pressure. Concentrate on the merits of the problem, not the mettle of the parties.


pages: 226 words: 59,080

Economics Rules: The Rights and Wrongs of the Dismal Science by Dani Rodrik

airline deregulation, Albert Einstein, bank run, barriers to entry, Bretton Woods, business cycle, butterfly effect, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collective bargaining, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, distributed generation, Donald Davies, Edward Glaeser, endogenous growth, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Everything should be made as simple as possible, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial deregulation, financial innovation, floating exchange rates, fudge factor, full employment, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, Growth in a Time of Debt, income inequality, inflation targeting, informal economy, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, liquidity trap, loss aversion, low skilled workers, market design, market fundamentalism, minimum wage unemployment, oil shock, open economy, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, price stability, prisoner's dilemma, profit maximization, quantitative easing, randomized controlled trial, rent control, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, school vouchers, South Sea Bubble, spectrum auction, The Market for Lemons, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, trade liberalization, trade route, ultimatum game, University of East Anglia, unorthodox policies, Vilfredo Pareto, Washington Consensus, white flight

Distinguishing among these alternative explanations is difficult because the neoclassical theory hinges on the mathematical representation of the underlying technology (the “production function”) and the changes therein, which are not directly observable. Ultimately, a theory that cannot be pinned down is not very helpful. A wide variety of alternative theories of distribution exist. Some emphasize explicit bargaining between employers and employees, where the prevalence of trade unions and collective-bargaining rules can shape the sharing of revenues of the enterprise between the two parties. Compensation levels of high income earners such as CEOs seem also to be determined largely by bargaining.3 Other models highlight the role of norms in the spread that is considered acceptable between, say, the CEO’s compensation and the amounts earned by rank-and-file employees. Most economists would acknowledge that workers in the United States and Europe greatly benefited from the more egalitarian social understanding of the 1950s and 1960s.

., 1n Boulding, Kenneth, 11 bounded rationality, 203 Bowles, Samuel, 71n Brazil: antipoverty programs of, 4 globalization and, 166 Bretton Woods Conference (1944), 1–2 Britain, Great, property rights and, 98 bubbles, 152–58 business cycles, 125–37 balanced budgets and, 171 capital flow in, 127 classical economics and, 126–27, 129, 137 inflation in, 126–27, 133, 135, 137 new classical models and, 130–34, 136–37 butterfly effect, 39 California, University of: at Berkeley, 107, 136, 147 at Los Angeles, 139 Cameron, David, 109 capacity utilization rates, 130 capital, neoclassical distribution theory and, 122, 124 capital flow: in business cycles, 127 economic growth and, 17–18, 114, 164–67 globalization and, 164–67 growth diagnostics and, 90 speculation and, 2 capitalism, 118–24, 127, 144, 205, 207 carbon, emissions quotas vs. taxes in reduction of, 188–90, 191–92 Card, David, 57 Carlyle, Thomas, 118 carpooling, 192, 193–94 cartels, 95 Cartwright, Nancy, 20, 22n, 29 cash grants, 4, 55, 105–6 Cassidy, John, 157n Central Bank of India, 154 Chang, Ha-Joon, 11 chaos theory, butterfly effect and, 39 Chicago, University of, 131, 152 Chicago Board of Trade, 55 Chile, antipoverty programs and, 4 China, People’s Republic of, 156, 163, 164 cigarette industry, taxation and, 27–28 Clark, John Bates, 119 “Classical Gold Standard, The: Some Lessons for Today” (Bordo), 127n classical unemployment, 126 climate change, 188–90, 191–92 climate modeling, 38, 40 Cochrane, John, 131 coffee, 179, 185 Colander, David, 85 collective bargaining, 124–25, 143 Colombia, educational vouchers in, 24 colonialism, developmental economics and, 206–7 “Colonial Origins of Comparative Development, The” (Acemoglu, Robinson, and Johnson), 206–7 Columbia University, 2, 108 commitment, in game theory, 33 comparative advantage, 52–55, 58n, 59–60, 139, 170 compensation for risk models, 110 competition, critical assumptions in, 28–29 complementarities, 42 computable general equilibrium (CGE) models, 41 computational models, 38, 41 computers, model complexity and, 38 Comte, Auguste, 81 conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs, 4, 105–6 congestion pricing, 2–3 Constitution, U.S., 187 construction industry, Great Recession and, 156 consumers, consumption, 119, 129, 130, 132, 136, 167 cross-price elasticity in, 180–81 consumer’s utility, 119 contextual truths, 20, 174 contingency, 25, 145, 173–74, 185 contracts, 88, 98, 161, 205 coordination models, 16–17, 42, 200 corn futures, 55 corruption, 87, 89, 91 costs, behavioral economics and, 70 Cotterman, Nancy, xiv Cournot, Antoine-Augustin, 13n Cournot competition, 68 credibility, in game theory, 33 “Credible Worlds, Capacities and Mechanisms” (Sugden), 172n credit rating agencies, 155 credit rationing, 64–65 critical assumptions, 18, 26–29, 94–98, 150–51, 180, 183–84, 202 cross-price elasticity, 180–81 Cuba, 57 currency: appreciation of, 60, 167 depreciation of, 153 economic growth and, 163–64, 167 current account deficits, 153 Curry, Brendan, xv Dahl, Gordon B., 151n Darwin, Charles, 113 Davis, Donald, 108 day care, 71, 190–91 Debreu, Gerard, 49–51 debt, national, 153 decision trees, 89–90, 90 DeLong, Brad, 136 democracy, social sciences and, 205 deposit insurance, 155 depreciation, currency, 153 Depression, Great, 2, 128, 153 deregulation, 143, 155, 158–59, 162, 168 derivatives, 153, 155 deterrence, in game theory, 33 development economics, 75–76, 86–93, 90, 159–67, 169, 201, 202 colonial settlement and, 206–7 institutions and, 98, 161, 202, 205–7 reform fatigue and, 88 diagnostic analysis, 86–93, 90, 97, 110–11 Dijkgraaf, Robbert, xiv “Dirtying White: Why Does Benn Steil’s History of Bretton Woods Distort the Ideas of Harry Dexter White?”


pages: 364 words: 108,237

Janesville: An American Story by Amy Goldstein

1960s counterculture, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, collective bargaining, Donald Trump, job-hopping, mass affluent, payday loans, uranium enrichment, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration

Before they take the elevator upstairs, Diane asks, could they talk for two seconds about some concerns that are best not to raise in front of the group? “Okay, sure,” the governor says. Diane stands close and looks him straight in the eye. “Any chance we’ll ever get to be a completely red state and work on these unions and become a right-to-work? What can we do to help you?” “Oh yeah,” Walker replies. “Well, we’re going to start in a couple weeks with our budget adjustment bill. The first step is, we’re going to deal with collective bargaining for all public employee unions, because you use divide and conquer.” “You’re right on target,” Diane says, as Mary looks on. By the time they get up to the boardroom, there is no more union talk. The leaders of Rock County 5.0 have decided that widening the Interstate, from the Illinois line to Madison, would be one of the best boosts for the local economy, and they are thrilled when Walker tells them that he supports this idea, hard as it will be to find the money for it in his lean, lean budget.

The bill in question is the first big-deal legislation that Walker put forth during his maiden month as governor. He is calling it a Budget Repair Bill. In the past, that has meant a slight fiscal tinkering. Not this time. The governor wants to carve and reshape the state government, saying that his bill is necessary to pull Wisconsin out of its recession-driven deficit. He also, it turns out, wants to shred most collective bargaining rights of most Wisconsin public sector unions. This was the plan about which he hinted to Diane and Mary the morning he met with Rock County 5.0. He had never mentioned it during his campaign. The bill would unwind Wisconsin’s own history. At the turn of the twentieth century, the state had become a hub of the Progressive movement, with the election in 1900 of Robert M. La Follette as governor.

In 1932, the year the plant closed during the Great Depression, Wisconsin was the first state to establish a system of unemployment benefits, three years before Congress adopted the federal Social Security Act that spread a similar system nationwide. It was in Madison in 1932, too, that a group of state employees formed a union that would, within a few years, grow into the country’s main labor organization of state and municipal workers. And in 1959, Wisconsin became the first state to pass a law guaranteeing collective bargaining for public employees. The surprise, labor-weakening aspect of Walker’s Budget Repair Bill is the reason that a considerable, sustained expression of fury has amassed at Capitol Square. Deri teaches U.S. history to teenagers and grew up in Wisconsin and certainly knows about its labor traditions. She considers herself a middle-of-the-road person—someone who tends to see both sides of a situation.


pages: 431 words: 106,435

How the Post Office Created America: A History by Winifred Gallagher

British Empire, California gold rush, centre right, Charles Lindbergh, City Beautiful movement, clean water, collective bargaining, glass ceiling, hiring and firing, indoor plumbing, Monroe Doctrine, New Urbanism, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Republic of Letters, Silicon Valley, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, upwardly mobile, white flight, wikimedia commons, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration

The commission offered many recommendations regarding the details of the new postal business. It should be freed from the spoils system and depoliticized but not actually privatized—at least not yet—primarily because only the federal government could handle finances on such a scale. It should be run by a board of directors that would set postage rates in consultation with a panel of independent experts. Its employees should receive the right of collective bargaining but not to strike. Importantly, this new post should balance its budget while continuing to provide universal mail service to every American everywhere for the same low price. Not everyone rejoiced at the prospect of turning one of the federal government’s oldest institutions into a mere business. As usual, some self-interested members of Congress were in no hurry to relinquish the waning spoils system’s last perquisites.

Labor-management tensions peaked in the spring of 1970, when word leaked out that members of Congress were poised to give postal employees a 5.4 percent raise, contrasted to a 41 percent hike for themselves. On March 17 in New York City, Branch 36 of the National Association of Letter Carriers, fed up with low pay and worried by the looming prospect of the post’s reorganization as a business, decided to take action. (Their nationwide organization of some 175,000 members, which had been founded in 1889, had grown more powerful in 1962, when Executive Order 10988 gave partial collective bargaining rights to government employee unions that did not segregate or discriminate based on race.) The New York City group broke with its parent organization to mount a wildcat strike, which quickly spread to involve perhaps a third of the post’s workers in cities across the nation. Almost seven hundred post offices were shut down, including nine of the ten biggest. The strike’s devastating consequences, particularly on the business sector, shocked Americans into realizing how much the post that they took for granted actually mattered.

The issue meant to honor the Moscow Summer Olympics in 1980 had been printed and distributed for circulation one day before President Jimmy Carter announced that the United States would boycott the games. The post pulled the rest of the stamps, but the disgruntled public demanded that they be put back on sale. The USPS also responded to the turbulent American milieu of the 1960s and ’70s with changes in its employment policies. The number of African Americans in its ranks increased in 1962, when Executive Order 10988 gave some collective bargaining rights to government unions that did not discriminate based on race. Efforts such as the President’s Commission on the Status of Women in 1961 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963 also expanded women’s employment in the postal service, and their numbers rose from just 22 percent of the workforce in the 1940s to 33 percent in the 1960s. Although the ranks of, say, female city letter carriers rose sharply, very few women still managed to become top postal executives.


pages: 332 words: 106,197

The Divide: A Brief Guide to Global Inequality and Its Solutions by Jason Hickel

Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, Atahualpa, Bartolomé de las Casas, Bernie Sanders, Bob Geldof, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Cape to Cairo, capital controls, carbon footprint, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, David Attenborough, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, dematerialisation, Doha Development Round, Elon Musk, European colonialism, falling living standards, financial deregulation, Fractional reserve banking, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, Howard Zinn, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), investor state dispute settlement, James Watt: steam engine, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, land value tax, liberal capitalism, Live Aid, Mahatma Gandhi, Monroe Doctrine, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa, plutocrats, Plutocrats, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, rent control, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, The Spirit Level, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transfer pricing, trickle-down economics, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration

For Keynes, excess protectionism was a primary driver of the Great Depression – a depression that had caused such misery in Germany and Japan, for example, that it had eventually given rise to the fascist politics that led to the war. Keynes believed that demand could be revived by carefully relaxing trade tariffs. This would allow prices to fall, people would start consuming again and the economy would be jolted back to life. The goal of the GATT was to reduce tariffs across the board through collective bargaining among industrialised countries. The system was designed to be beneficial to all, in the spirit of unity and solidarity, so the rules were not rigidly applied: member states could negotiate to avoid policies that would cause their economies significant harm. In other words, the GATT began its life as an ostensibly benevolent institution, set on maintaining economic stability and peace. Just like the original IMF and the World Bank, which were founded during the same conference, it was rooted in Keynesian principles and committed to a kind of collective good.

In the wake of decolonisation, however, most Latin American countries were controlled by autocratic governments, and by the early 20th century the United States began to exert a strong influence over the region. 4  ‘These measures, he said …’ Keynes outlined these ideas in 1933 in The Means to Prosperity (copies of which were sent to the governments of Britain and the United States), and more thoroughly in 1936 in his famous text The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money. 5  ‘When Franklin Delano Roosevelt came …’ The Works Progress Administration was established in 1939 to employ unemployed citizens in public works projects. 6  ‘When the Second World War …’ The Roosevelt administration raised the top marginal tax rate to 75 per cent in 1939, and then to 94 per cent in 1944. It remained above 90 per cent until the mid-1960s. 7  ‘This new system relied on …’ In the United States, the key piece of legislation was the National Labor Relations Act of 1935, which facilitated trade unions and collective bargaining. 8  ‘Middle-class women, for example …’ Consider, for instance, Betty Friedan’s critique of women’s social subordination in her 1963 book The Feminine Mystique. 9  ‘The progressive political parties that …’ See, for example, Frederick Cooper, Decolonization and African Society (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996). 10 ‘The policy suspended the long …’ In 1933 the United States signed the Convention on the Rights and Duties of States.

Also see Jason Hickel, ‘It’s time for a global minimum wage’, Al Jazeera English, 10 June 2013. 9  ‘There is no evidence that …’ The evidence suggests that raising the minimum wage has no negative effect on employment. See John Schmitt, Why Does the Minimum Wage Have No Discernible Effect on Employment? (Washington, DC: Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2013). See also International Labour Organization, Global Wage Report 2008/9: Minimum Wages and Collective Bargaining (Geneva: International Labour Office, 2008). 10 ‘In fact, you could raise …’ Robert Pollin et al., ‘Global apparel production and sweatshop labour: can raising retail prices finance living wages?’, Cambridge Journal of Economics 28(2), 2002, pp. 153–71. 11 ‘It might sound like a …’ See ‘C131 Minimum Wage Fixing Convention’, 1970. 12 ‘This could be done by …’ Like the Brussels Definition of Value, which was abolished by the WTO. 13 ‘Requiring global financial transparency would …’ The United States, Britain and the European Parliament are already taking steps in this direction.


pages: 726 words: 210,048

Hard Landing by Thomas Petzinger, Thomas Petzinger Jr.

airline deregulation, buy and hold, centralized clearinghouse, Charles Lindbergh, collective bargaining, cross-subsidies, desegregation, Donald Trump, feminist movement, index card, low cost airline, low cost carrier, low skilled workers, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, mutually assured destruction, Network effects, offshore financial centre, oil shock, Ponzi scheme, postindustrial economy, price stability, profit motive, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, the medium is the message, The Predators' Ball, Thomas L Friedman, union organizing, yield management, zero-sum game

As one of its biggest shareholders, he simply wanted the company to deploy its workforce in the most efficient manner possible. To help accomplish this Kelleher, wearing his lawyer’s hat, insisted that department heads participate in the contract negotiations involving the employees in their jurisdiction, a practice far from routine in labor relations. More commonly the entire affair of collective bargaining was turned over to lawyers and negotiating specialists. But professional negotiators were principally interested in controlling wages, and wages, so far as Southwest was concerned, were not the main issue. Only the middle managers understood the fine points of a 10-minute airplane turnaround, which was why Kelleher insisted on their presence at the bargaining table. This was labor strife at Southwest Airlines: Kelleher was out for dinner and drinks with a group of pilots.

Lorenzo had been vilified in the union campaign against the creation of New York Air. It was also common knowledge to union people that Lorenzo in his early days at Texas International had taken one of the longest strikes in airline history. Ominously, Lorenzo had filed a legal statement in connection with the proposed takeover saying that if he established control of Continental, “it will be necessary to renegotiate existing collective bargaining agreements.” By this time “renegotiate” was an often-used word in the Lorenzo lexicon—a word whose first five letters made it a cousin of the less dignified “renege.” The employees of Continental were beside themselves at the idea. They had contracts, after all. A group of Continental pilots came up with the ingenious idea of using an employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP, to block Lorenzo.

But what exactly were the consequences? • • • A few months earlier Bakes had been interested to read about an appellate court decision in Philadelphia. A New Jersey building supply company called Bildisco had filed for bankruptcy protection, and in doing so had repudiated its labor contracts along with its financial obligations, as if its work rules and wage rates were accounts payable. The court ruled that if collective bargaining agreements threatened the claims of other creditors, they could, in fact, be unilaterally abrogated—wiped out, kaput, while the company continued about its business. Bakes passed out copies of the case to some of his fellow executives. Bankruptcy. The notion was so … intriguing: a perfectly solvent company, with a valuable franchise and assets of tremendous value, nevertheless using bankruptcy as a way of escaping from wage agreements it no longer wished to honor.


pages: 236 words: 62,158

Marx at the Arcade: Consoles, Controllers, and Class Struggle by Jamie Woodcock

4chan, Alexey Pajitnov wrote Tetris, anti-work, augmented reality, barriers to entry, battle of ideas, Boris Johnson, Build a better mousetrap, butterfly effect, call centre, collective bargaining, Columbine, conceptual framework, cuban missile crisis, David Graeber, deindustrialization, deskilling, Donald Trump, game design, gig economy, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global value chain, Hacker Ethic, Howard Zinn, John Conway, Kickstarter, Landlord’s Game, late capitalism, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, Minecraft, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Oculus Rift, pink-collar, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, union organizing, unpaid internship, V2 rocket

Their statement, released through Le Syndicat des Travailleurs et Travailleuses du Jeu Vidéo (STJV, the videogame workers union), read, “In the face of the refusal to pay us as required by law, and the manifest lack of consideration for the value of our work, we have come to the conclusion that, in order to make ourselves heard, we have no option but to go on strike.”11 The roots of the strike lay in one developer looking closely at existing labor contracts and coming across the SYNTEC collective bargaining agreement, which covered tech workers generally and therefore included videogame workers.12 Along with employee terms over pay and overtime compensation, this agreement also included the workers’ “right to log-off,” and not be required to answer emails after 6 p.m. Discovering that these terms applied to them, the workers attempted to negotiate with management about their concerns.13 These peculiarities of the French industrial relations system, along with the formation of the union in the autumn of 2017, provided the channel for this action.

Notes from Below 2 (March 30, 2018), www.notesfrombelow.org/article/tech-workers-platform-workers-and-workers-inquiry. 5Tech Workers Coalition, “Tech Workers, Platform Workers, and Workers’ Inquiry.” 6“Why We Strike,” SAG-AFTRA, 2016, www.sagaftra.org/files/whywestrike.pdf. 7Quoted in Ian Williams, “The Ongoing Voice Actor’s Strike Is More than Just a Little Drama,” Waypoint, December 29, 2016, https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/nznyxq/the-ongoing-voice-actors-strike-is-more-than-just-a-little-drama. 8Quoted in Williams, “The Ongoing Voice Actor’s Strike.” 9Luke Plunkett, “The Video Game Voice-Actor’s Strike Is Over,” Kotaku, November 7, 2017, https://kotaku.com/the-video-game-voice-actors-strike-is-over-1820240476. 10Dante Douglas, “Game Developers Need a Union,” Paste, March 7, 2018, www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2018/03/game-developers-need-a-union.html. 11Quoted in Ethan Gach, “Developers at One French Game Studio Have Been on Strike for a Month,” Kotaku, March 16, 2018, https://kotaku.com/developers-at-one-french-game-studio-have-been-on-strik-1823833426. 12This is a national collective bargaining agreement in France that mainly covers consulting firms. 13Gach, “Developers at One French Game Studio.” 14Quoted in Gach, “Developers at One French Game Studio.” 15Gach, “Developers at One French Game Studio.” 16Quoted in Gach, “Developers at One French Game Studio.” 17“A Black and White Tri-Fold Leaflet,” Game Workers Unite UK, 2018, http://gwu-uk.org/assets/trifold-bw-uk.pdf. 18Matt Kim, “IGDA Director Says Capital, Not Unions, Will Keep Game Development Jobs Secure,” US Gamer, January 19, 2018, www.usgamer.net/articles/igda-director-union-crunch-interview. 19Ian Williams, “After Destroying Lives for Decades, Gaming Is Finally Talking Unionization,” Waypoint, March 23, 2018, https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/7xdv5e/after-destroying-lives-for-decades-gaming-is-finally-talking-unionization. 20Williams, “After Destroying Lives for Decades.” 21Williams, “After Destroying Lives for Decades.” 22Williams, “After Destroying Lives for Decades.” 23Michelle Ehrhardt, “IGDA, Union-Busting and GDC 2018,” Unwinnable, March 22, 2018, https://unwinnable.com/2018/03/22/igda-union-busting-and-gdc-2018. 24Ehrhardt, “IGDA, Union-Busting and GDC 2018.” 25Game Workers Unite, “Game Workers Unite Zine,” Notes from Below 2 (March 30, 2018), www.notesfrombelow.org/article/game-workers-unite-zine. 26Game Workers Unite, “Game Workers Unite Zine.” 27Game Workers Unite, “Game Workers Unite Zine.” 28Quoted in Thomas Wilde, “‘It’s Very David and Goliath’: Inside the Growing Effort to Unionize Video Game Developers,” Geekwire, May 9, 2018, www.geekwire.com/2018/david-goliath-inside-growing-effort-unionize-video-game-developers. 29Quoted in Wilde, “It’s Very David and Goliath.” 30“Prospects for Organising the Videogames Industry: Interview with Game Workers Unite UK,” interview by Jamie Woodcock, Notes from Below 3 (August 16, 2018), https://notesfrombelow.org/article/prospects-for-organising-the-videogames-industry. 31“Prospects for Organising.” 32“Prospects for Organising.” 33“Prospects for Organising.” 34Jamie Woodcock, “Playing for Power,” Jacobin, January 3, 2019, https://jacobinmag.com/2019/01/video-game-workers-unite-union-uk. 35See, for example, articles at https://notesfrombelow.org/.


pages: 272 words: 64,626

Eat People: And Other Unapologetic Rules for Game-Changing Entrepreneurs by Andy Kessler

23andMe, Andy Kessler, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bob Noyce, British Empire, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, commoditize, computer age, creative destruction, disintermediation, Douglas Engelbart, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, fiat currency, Firefox, Fractional reserve banking, George Gilder, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, income inequality, invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, libertarian paternalism, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, McMansion, Netflix Prize, packet switching, personalized medicine, pets.com, prediction markets, pre–internet, profit motive, race to the bottom, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, social graph, Steve Jobs, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transcontinental railway, transfer pricing, wealth creators, Yogi Berra

Broadcasters own valuable TV spectrum, and for the longest time there were only three broadcast networks, ABC, CBS, and NBC, with a set of arcane laws protecting their government-mandated franchises. Then the laws were amended to allow for a fourth network, Fox. And this leaks to other markets. Because of high advertising rates, broadcasters overpay for the Super Bowl, the NBA Finals, the World Series, and the Masters. The NFL passes along these fees to owners who, through collective bargaining, are forced to pass them along to players. No one is worth $10 million a year to catch a football like Terrell Owens, or $25 million a year to play shortstop and hit like Derek Jeter. (Yes, they are part of the “vital few,” but vital to our entertainment, not wealth creation!) Because of the exclusivity of media, Heineken (a Super Slopper) pays up and then passes along their advertising costs in the form of higher beer prices.

So often, publicly managed and funded projects can cost two or three times as much to build, and take two or three times as long, as similar projects done by the private sector. California has a prevailing wage law. You would think they call around to private contractors, survey what they are paying workers in the area, and then set an average wage rate. That would make too much sense. Instead, California surveys collective bargaining agreements reached with unions, and then adds up salary and health benefits and paid leaves and disability benefits and sets a prevailing wage that can easily be 50 to 100 percent more than the local private market is paying for workers. No wonder our public works are so shabby! What other political entrepreneurs are robbing us blind? Well, teachers get tenure after three years and the worst of them cruise for the next thirty.


pages: 246 words: 68,392

Gigged: The End of the Job and the Future of Work by Sarah Kessler

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, business cycle, call centre, cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, crowdsourcing, David Attenborough, Donald Trump, East Village, Elon Musk, financial independence, future of work, game design, gig economy, income inequality, information asymmetry, Jeff Bezos, job automation, law of one price, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, market clearing, minimum wage unemployment, new economy, payday loans, post-work, profit maximization, QR code, race to the bottom, ride hailing / ride sharing, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, TaskRabbit, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, union organizing, universal basic income, working-age population, Works Progress Administration, Y Combinator

Workers who are classified as “employees” must be paid while they take coffee breaks and must be treated according to anti-discrimination laws. They come with commitments to contribute to government safety net programs for retirement and unemployment benefits. And they can be difficult to fire when business circumstances change. Independent contractors come with none of these responsibilities. They also do not have the right to unionize under US federal collective bargaining laws, and there’s no requirement to provide them with training, equipment to do the job, or benefits.4 The situation is similar, albeit to a lesser extent, elsewhere. UK employers, for instance, do not need to offer sick days, holiday pay, a guaranteed minimum wage, or other benefits to self-employed contractors. When a driver signed up to work for Uber as an independent contractor, he or she (but most likely he, as 81% of US drivers, as of December 2015, were men5) supplied his own car, gas, and overly pungent air fresheners.

We’ve seen them change things before, but then they find five other ways to still screw the drivers. They change one policy, they’ll find five other ways to implement the same thing that is so-called changed.” * * * Traditional unions had two options if they wanted to organize Uber drivers. The first was to argue that drivers were being treated as employees, and as employees, they could organize under federal collective bargaining laws. The second was to find some way outside of those laws to organize independent contractors. A local chapter of the Teamsters in Seattle lobbied for a law that would allow Uber drivers to form a union. It passed. (Shortly later, the US Chamber of Commerce sued the city, saying the law conflicted with anti-trust law.) In Germany, a group of workers’ organizations created a list of best practices that, as of 2017, eight crowdsourcing companies had pledged to follow.


pages: 211 words: 67,975

The Victory Machine: The Making and Unmaking of the Warriors Dynasty by Ethan Sherwood Strauss

Broken windows theory, collective bargaining, Donald Trump, hive mind, If something cannot go on forever, it will stop - Herbert Stein's Law, side project, Silicon Valley, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs

The “max” contract dictated a ceiling on how much a team can pay an individual player, represented as a percentage of the salary cap. It doesn’t matter if LeBron James might have garnered $100 million per year on the open market in his last Cavs seasons. He had to content himself with a third of that. The owners negotiated for the “max,” along with shorter guaranteed contracts in subsequent collective bargaining agreements. For years, there was a trope of owners attempting to “protect themselves from themselves.” There had been bad, lengthy contracts handed out. Sports pundits delighted in mocking these terrible decisions. These billionaires just couldn’t help but make poor choices, it was reasoned by many observers. Without proper controls, they would get in a bidding war for these elite players, give away the store, and depress their fan bases for long periods of time.

Russell might have been young and unlucky, but beyond the basketball, he was known for revealing his teammate’s love affair on social media and a failed attempt at smuggling weed through the airport via an Arizona Iced Tea can. Will Cain, an ESPN TV commentator, mocked the latter pratfall, exclaiming, “This fool hid contraband inside contraband!” But this was all the price of getting back in the big game. Russell would have a max contract, which paradoxically made him more valuable to the Warriors than if he came cheaper. For a trade to be possible under collective bargaining agreement rules, salaries must “match” on both sides within a certain range. Were Russell to have a quality season, he could be swapped for a possibly unhappy superstar who wanted out of his situation, thanks to the contract match. This was how the league had moved. D’Angelo Russell was as much an asset as he was an investment, even if the Warriors had committed four years and over $117 million to him.


pages: 480 words: 119,407

Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, augmented reality, Bernie Sanders, collective bargaining, crowdsourcing, Diane Coyle, Donald Trump, falling living standards, first-past-the-post, gender pay gap, gig economy, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, Hacker Ethic, Indoor air pollution, informal economy, lifelogging, low skilled workers, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Nate Silver, new economy, obamacare, Oculus Rift, offshore financial centre, pattern recognition, phenotype, post-industrial society, randomized controlled trial, remote working, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, speech recognition, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steven Levy, the built environment, urban planning, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

An analysis of pay policy in Europe criticises the outsourcing trend for seeming ‘to have been implemented with little or no reference to their gender effects’.27 And existing data suggests that those gender effects are plentiful. There is, to begin with, ‘limited scope for collective bargaining’ in agency jobs. This is a problem for all workers, but can be especially problematic for women because evidence suggests that collective bargaining (as opposed to individual salary negotiation) could be particularly important for women – those pesky modesty norms again. As a result, an increase in jobs like agency work that don’t allow for collective bargaining might be detrimental to attempts to close the gender pay gap. But the negative impact of precarious work on women isn’t just about unintended side effects. It’s also about the weaker rights that are intrinsic to the gig economy.


In the Age of the Smart Machine by Shoshana Zuboff

affirmative action, American ideology, blue-collar work, collective bargaining, computer age, Computer Numeric Control, conceptual framework, data acquisition, demand response, deskilling, factory automation, Ford paid five dollars a day, fudge factor, future of work, industrial robot, information retrieval, interchangeable parts, job automation, lateral thinking, linked data, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, old-boy network, optical character recognition, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, post-industrial society, RAND corporation, Shoshana Zuboff, social web, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, union organizing, zero-sum game

These efforts, which came to be known as the "Quality of Work Life" movement, stressed the value of individual participation, cooper- ation, problem solving, and trust, in contrast to collective bargaining's emphasis on the management of conflict, due process, and contractual work practices. This approach questioned the image of the manager as the only one who knows and the one who always knows best. 54 The Quality of Work Life movement resulted in a wide range of innovations of varying degrees of comprehensiveness. In a recent study of unionized industries, labor-relations experts Thomas Kochan, Harry Katz, and Robert McKersie have grouped these reforms into three categories- innovations with a focus limited to the workplace (quality circles in which workers and managers collaborate on ways to improve produc- tion, or improvements in worker-supervisor communication); innova- tions with extensive linkages to traditional collective bargaining issues (pay-for-knowledge systems, self-managing work teams, or increased sharing of business information); and innovations that link work reforms 242 AUTHORITY: THE SPIRITUAL DIMENSION OF POWER to the business strategy (union board representation, profit sharing, or I · I .. ) ss emp oyment securIty po lCles .

In this way managers and workers, fitfully, kept the faith. RECENT CHALLENGES TO MANAGERIAL AUTHORITY These conceptions of the rights and obligations of workers and their managers remained relatively stable throughout the 1950s and 1960s. The trade union movement had significantly improved the economic well-being of the worker and helped to buffer the impact of managerial decision making. Yet the basic thrust of collective bargaining continued to reflect the spirit of New Deal legislation: management manages while workers and their unions protest unsatisfactory managerial deci- sions or attempt to negotiate their impacts. The late 1960s and the 1970s saw the beginning of a new kind of challenge to the old faith in the necessity and legitimacy of manager's exclusive right to command. Fundamental changes in U.S. society had already begun to erode once-reliable class distinctions. 48 When the Lynds wrote their classic ethnography of a typical American city in 1929, they documented the acutely different values and ways of life that separated "business class" and "working class" families.

., 77 Class struggle, 283; see also Social strat- ification Clay-getting, 37 Clerical work, 215-16; computer- mediation of, 129-33; origins of, 98-99, 113-23; see also Office work Closed loop computer system, 253 Coal excavation, 37 Cobb, Jonathan, 239 Codification, 178-85 Cognitive activity: and the abstraction Index of industrial work, 73; in action- centered skills, 73, 75-76, 185-95; in intellective skills, 185-95,216- 17 Cohen, Patricia Cline, 447n 17 Collective activity, 197-200, 204, 206; and learning of crafts, 176-77 Collective bargaining, see Trade union movement; Unions Collective responsibility, 355-61 Commercial schools, Ill, 116, 232 Communication: clerk's role and, 118-19, 125; informal, in computer medium, 362-86; manager's role and, 101-3, 105, 361; organized, 101-2; in posthierarchical organi- zations, 400; shared context as re- quirement for, 196, 204-5; see also Oral culture; Social exchange; Writ- ten word Computer-aided design, 419-22 Computer-aided manufacturing, 419- 22 Computer-aided process planning, 421-22 Computer conferencing, 15-16, 1 79, 363-72 Computer-integrated manufacturing, 421-22 Computer phobia, 259 Computer systems, see Information technology Concentration, 132, 156, 171, 440n6 Confidentiality, 380 Conformity, see Anticipatory confor- mity; Obedience Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, 416, 420 Context-dependent skills, 61, 69, 106; see also Action-centered skills; Ac- tion context Continuous-process production, 20- 22; automation limited in, 59-60; scope of computer applications in, 418-19, 421; skill and effort in, 51- 53; social and psychological issues and, 51-56 Control, sense of, 51, 157; loss of, 62- 70, 132, 344-46; and prospect of Index socially integrated workplace, 404- 12; and visibility in computer me- dium, 344, 346 Control techniques, 313-14; impact of, 31 9-61; intensification of pro- duction and, 33; managerial author- ity maintained by, 313; uses of, 389, 392, 400, 404-5, 452nl0; see also Surveillance Conveyor belt, 47 Convicts and paupers, 225, 320 Corporal punishment, 225 Cost data, 253, 255-67, 372, 424-25 Cottage industries, 31, 227 Counterculture values, 241 Court society, 29-30, III Craft work: automation and, 51, 53- 54, 59; autonomy associated with, 41; deskilling of, 107, 113, 136, 215,283; effort as organized by, 45- 46; executive work as, 99-107; in- dustrialization and, 37-42; shared action necessary for learning, 176- 77; social integration stemming from, 41,50,53-54 Crossman, E.


pages: 268 words: 76,709

Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed Our Most Alluring Fruit by Barry Estabrook

Bernie Sanders, biofilm, collective bargaining, Columbian Exchange, McMansion, medical malpractice, old-boy network, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

As part of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Depression-era New Deal, the National Labor Relations Act granted workers the right to form unions and engage in collective bargaining without fear of being fired. In early drafts, the legislation covered everybody, but the final version exempted domestic help and farmworkers from the basic protections provided by the act. In the wording of the bill, the definition of “employee” did not include “any individual employed as an agricultural laborer.” The official reason given was that, in those days, farmers kept at most only one or two hired men and that households had only a few domestic servants, so unions and collective bargaining were not an issue. But in the 1930s, most domestics and farmworkers in this country were African American, and Roosevelt needed the support of southern Democratic legislators to get his New Deal legislation through Congress.


pages: 918 words: 257,605

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

Amazon Web Services, Andrew Keen, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Bartolomé de las Casas, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, blue-collar work, book scanning, Broken windows theory, California gold rush, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, citizen journalism, cloud computing, collective bargaining, Computer Numeric Control, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, corporate personhood, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, dogs of the Dow, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, facts on the ground, Ford paid five dollars a day, future of work, game design, Google Earth, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, hive mind, impulse control, income inequality, Internet of things, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, job automation, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, linked data, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, means of production, multi-sided market, Naomi Klein, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Occupy movement, off grid, PageRank, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pattern recognition, Paul Buchheit, performance metric, Philip Mirowski, precision agriculture, price mechanism, profit maximization, profit motive, recommendation engine, refrigerator car, RFID, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Bork, Robert Mercer, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, shareholder value, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, slashdot, smart cities, Snapchat, social graph, social web, software as a service, speech recognition, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, structural adjustment programs, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, two-sided market, union organizing, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, winner-take-all economy, Wolfgang Streeck

In the “crisis of democracy” zeitgeist, the neoliberal vision and its reversion to market metrics was deeply attractive to politicians and policy makers, both as the means to evade political ownership of tough economic choices and because it promised to impose a new kind of order where disorder was feared.25 The absolute authority of market forces would be enshrined as the ultimate source of imperative control, displacing democratic contest and deliberation with an ideology of atomized individuals sentenced to perpetual competition for scarce resources. The disciplines of competitive markets promised to quiet unruly individuals and even transform them back into subjects too preoccupied with survival to complain. As the old collectivist enemies had receded, new ones took their place: state regulation and oversight, social legislation and welfare policies, labor unions and the institutions of collective bargaining, and the principles of democratic politics. Indeed, all these were to be replaced by the market’s version of truth, and competition would be the solution to growth. The new aims would be achieved through supply-side reforms, including deregulation, privatization, and lower taxes. Thirty-five years before Hayek and Friedman’s ascendance, the great historian Karl Polanyi wrote eloquently on the rise of the market economy.

Relatively little destruction is creative, especially in the absence of a robust double movement. This is illustrated in Schumpeter’s example of US Steel, founded by some of the Gilded Age’s most notorious “robber barons,” including Andrew Carnegie and J. P. Morgan. Under pressure from an increasingly insistent double movement, US Steel eventually institutionalized fair labor practices through unions and collective bargaining as well as internal labor markets, career ladders, professional hierarchies, employment security, training, and development, all while implementing its technological advances in mass production. Mutation is not a fairy tale; it is rational capitalism, bound in reciprocities with its populations through democratic institutions. Mutations fundamentally change the nature of capitalism by shifting it in the direction of those it is supposed to serve.

In this context, Durkheim singled out the destructive effects of social inequality on the division of labor in society, especially what he viewed as the most dangerous form of inequality: extreme asymmetries of power that make “conflict itself impossible” by “refusing to admit the right of combat.” Such pathologies can be cured only by a politics that asserts the people’s right to contest, confront, and prevail in the face of unequal and illegitimate power over society. In the late nineteenth century and most of the twentieth century, that contest was led by labor and other social movements that asserted social equality through institutions such as collective bargaining and public education. The transformation that we witness in our time echoes these historical observations as the division of learning follows the same migratory path from the economic to the social domain once traveled by the division of labor. Now the division of learning “passes far beyond purely economic interests,” for it establishes the basis for our social order and its moral content.


pages: 237 words: 72,716

The Inequality Puzzle: European and US Leaders Discuss Rising Income Inequality by Roland Berger, David Grusky, Tobias Raffel, Geoffrey Samuels, Chris Wimer

Branko Milanovic, business cycle, Celtic Tiger, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, double entry bookkeeping, equal pay for equal work, fear of failure, financial innovation, full employment, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, Long Term Capital Management, microcredit, offshore financial centre, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, rent-seeking, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, time value of money, very high income

John Monks is the General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), an organization established in 1973 to represent trade unions across Europe. Monks has held this position since 2003, prior to which he served as the General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress, a similarly purposed United Kingdom organization. With the rise of the European Union, Monks has helped make the ETUC the primary organization working for collective bargaining, good working conditions, business-labor dialogue, and worker consultation on business topics. The ETUC works with all EU governing bodies to address these issues. He is a Visiting Professor, Manchester Business School, a member of the Councils of the European Policy Centre, Brussels, and the Centre for European Studies, London, and a Fellow of the City and Guilds of London Institute. ______________________________ R.

For the major part, those who move are forced to move for economic reasons. When the Polish worker goes to Britain, it’s not because he loves to go to Britain, it’s because he needs to go there for higher earnings, to go back home to buy his house, help his wife, his kids. I’m not saying it’s wrong, I’m only saying how do we do it in a better way to ensure we achieve equal pay for equal work and full respect for collective bargaining agreements. What we need in legislation is the so-called equal pay principle, that no matter where you are, you receive adequate wages, have access to social insurance, pensions, and can benefit from high workers’ protection standards. So when Polish workers go to Germany, they are treated according to the German rules and when German workers go to Denmark, they enjoy Danish standards. If you take the northern German slaughterhouses, each Monday morning there’s a bus, or two, or ten, coming with Ukraine workers.


pages: 284 words: 85,643

What's the Matter with White People by Joan Walsh

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, banking crisis, clean water, collective bargaining, David Brooks, desegregation, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, full employment, global village, Golden Gate Park, hiring and firing, impulse control, income inequality, invisible hand, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, mass immigration, new economy, obamacare, Occupy movement, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, upwardly mobile, urban decay, War on Poverty, We are the 99%, white flight, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

Some 2010 GOP voters seemed to get wise to the ruse after the election, however, when new GOP governors made unexpectedly aggressive moves against labor—and in Wisconsin and Ohio, working-class voters fought back. Wisconsin’s Scott Walker and Ohio’s John Kasich made public workers the new public enemy, demonizing them as slackers and moochers living off the government, as if they were twenty-first century welfare queens. In November 2011, Ohio repealed GOP Kasich’s bill that stripped public sector unions of their collective bargaining rights, and Wisconsin voters began a drive to recall Walker. Maine elected a Tea Party Republican governor in 2010. A year later, voters overturned a GOP-sponsored law that had abolished the state’s traditional same-day registration practice. The states that allowed citizens to register and vote at the same time, a practice that dramatically increases voter turnout, just happened to be the nation’s most homogeneous—that is, the whitest—from Idaho to Wyoming to Maine.

Yet once Republicans realized that even in the whitest states, same-day voter laws and other easy ballot-access regulations empower citizens who are today more likely to vote for Democrats—students, young people, the lower-income of every race, and yes, the nonwhites—they’ve fought these voter laws ruthlessly. “Voting liberal, that’s what kids do,” a New Hampshire Republican said in defense of a bill that would prohibit people from voting with only a college ID—and given his state’s demographics, he was mainly talking about white kids. Thus the radical GOP is now rolling back rights white people have long taken for granted—and in Maine, at least, they fought back. The Ohio collective bargaining victory, the Wisconsin recall, the Maine same-day voter registration backlash: all were evidence of the new activism most widely represented in the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement. It had an immediate success: media mentions of the word inequality soared as OWS took off. A Tumblr blog, “We are the 99 percent,” became the twenty-first-century, DIY version of Michael Harrington’s The Other America.


pages: 361 words: 81,068

The Internet Is Not the Answer by Andrew Keen

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Airbnb, AltaVista, Andrew Keen, augmented reality, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Black Swan, Bob Geldof, Burning Man, Cass Sunstein, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collective bargaining, Colonization of Mars, computer age, connected car, creative destruction, cuban missile crisis, David Brooks, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, Donald Davies, Downton Abbey, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, Frederick Winslow Taylor, frictionless, full employment, future of work, gig economy, global village, Google bus, Google Glasses, Hacker Ethic, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, index card, informal economy, information trail, Innovator's Dilemma, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joi Ito, Joseph Schumpeter, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Kodak vs Instagram, Lean Startup, libertarian paternalism, lifelogging, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Martin Wolf, Metcalfe’s law, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, nonsequential writing, Norbert Wiener, Norman Mailer, Occupy movement, packet switching, PageRank, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer rental, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Potemkin village, precariat, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Metcalfe, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, social web, South of Market, San Francisco, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, TaskRabbit, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, the medium is the message, the new new thing, Thomas L Friedman, Travis Kalanick, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Uber for X, uber lyft, urban planning, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, winner-take-all economy, working poor, Y Combinator

The twentieth-century industrial age, while far from ideal in many ways, was distinguished by what George Packer, writing in the New York Times, calls the “great leveling” of the “Roosevelt Republic.”64 For hard-line neoliberals like Tom Perkins, Packer’s “great leveling” probably raises the specter of a socialist dystopia. But for those not fortunate enough to own a $130 million yacht as long as a football field, this world offered an economic and cultural center, a middle ground where jobs and opportunity were plentiful. The late industrial age of the second half of the twentieth century was a middle-class world built, Packer notes, by “state universities, progressive taxation, interstate highways, collective bargaining, health insurance for the elderly, credible news organizations.”65 According to the Harvard economists Claudia Goldin and Lawrence Katz, this was a “golden age” of labor in which increasingly skilled workers won the “race between education and technology” and made themselves essential to the industrial economy.66 And, of course, it was a world of publicly funded institutions like ARPA and NSFNET that provided the investment and opportunities to build valuable new technologies like the Internet.

On Twitter, @travisk even once borrowed the cover of The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand’s extreme libertarian celebration of free-market capitalism, as his profile photo.3 Kalanick’s $18 billion venture is certainly a badass company, with customers accusing its drivers of every imaginable crime from kidnapping4 to sexual harassment.5 Since its creation, the unregulated Uber has not only been in a constant legal fight with New York City, San Francisco, Chicago, and federal regulators, but has been picketed by its own nonunionized drivers demanding collective bargaining rights and health-care benefits.6 Things aren’t any better overseas. In France, opposition to the networked transportation startup has been so intense that, in early 2014, there were driver strikes and even a series of violent attacks on Uber cars in Paris.7 While in September 2014, a Frankfurt court banned Uber’s budget price UberPop product entirely from the German market, claiming that the massively financed startup unfairly competed with local taxi companies.8 Uber drivers don’t seem to like Kalanick’s anti-union company any more than regulators do.


pages: 307 words: 82,680

A Pelican Introduction: Basic Income by Guy Standing

bank run, basic income, Bernie Sanders, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Black Swan, Boris Johnson, British Empire, centre right, collective bargaining, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, declining real wages, deindustrialization, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial intermediation, full employment, future of work, gig economy, Gunnar Myrdal, housing crisis, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, intangible asset, job automation, job satisfaction, Joi Ito, labour market flexibility, land value tax, libertarian paternalism, low skilled workers, lump of labour, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, mass incarceration, moral hazard, Nelson Mandela, offshore financial centre, open economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Paul Samuelson, plutocrats, Plutocrats, precariat, quantitative easing, randomized controlled trial, rent control, rent-seeking, Sam Altman, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, Stephen Hawking, The Future of Employment, universal basic income, Wolfgang Streeck, women in the workforce, working poor, Y Combinator, Zipcar

Today, increasing numbers of people cannot obtain an adequate income from the work and labour they are required or expected to do, however hard and long they work.18 Globalization, technological change and ‘flexible’ labour markets mean that real wages in industrialized countries, on average, will stagnate for the foreseeable future, leaving many in the precariat permanently trapped in the low pay/benefit nexus. Some critics of basic income contend that labour’s share of national income has fallen only in countries where unions are weak and that, if they were strengthened, wages and worker living standards would rise.19 The trouble with that argument is that the labour share of national income has fallen even where unions and collective bargaining systems have remained relatively strong, as in Austria. A basic income would underpin the total income gained by the precariat. It would also enable those on low incomes to do odd jobs for other low-income people for a modest amount. At present, potential suppliers of labour cannot afford to work for a small sum, especially if they risk losing means-tested benefits, while potential clients cannot afford to pay the worker the going rate.

The Dignified Work Principle – a policy is socially just only if it does not impede people from pursuing work in a dignified way and if it does not disadvantage the most insecure groups in that respect. Each policy should be evaluated with these principles in mind. Of course, there are trade-offs in some cases, but we should be wary of any policy that demonstrably runs counter to them. Statutory Minimum and ‘Living’ Wages Almost all governments in the globalization era have curtailed collective bargaining and constrained trade unions, as part of their agenda to make labour markets more flexible. Most have combined that with a wage floor, introducing national statutory minimum wages as in Britain and, more recently, Germany, or putting more emphasis on existing minimum-wage legislation, as the US has done, even while allowing the wage’s real value to decline. Paradoxically, a statutory minimum wage is most likely to work well in an industrial labour market in which stable full-time jobs predominate.


pages: 334 words: 82,041

How Did We Get Into This Mess?: Politics, Equality, Nature by George Monbiot

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Alfred Russel Wallace, bank run, bilateral investment treaty, Branko Milanovic, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Attenborough, dematerialisation, demographic transition, drone strike, en.wikipedia.org, first-past-the-post, full employment, Gini coefficient, hedonic treadmill, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), investor state dispute settlement, invisible hand, land reform, land value tax, market fundamentalism, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mont Pelerin Society, moral panic, Naomi Klein, Northern Rock, obamacare, oil shale / tar sands, old-boy network, peak oil, place-making, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, rent-seeking, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, urban sprawl, wealth creators, World Values Survey

In reality, the free market is a political construction, that often has to be imposed through violence, such as Suharto’s massacres in Indonesia, Pinochet’s coup in Chile and the suppression of protests against structural adjustment and austerity all over the world.3 Far from being a neutral forum, the market is dominated by powerful agents – corporations and oligarchs – who use their position to demand special treatment: contracts, handouts, tax breaks, treaties, the crushing of resistance and other political favours. They extend their power beyond their trading relationships through their ownership of the media and their funding and control of political parties. Freedom of the kind championed by neoliberals means freedom from competing interests. It means freedom from the demands of social justice, from environmental constraints, from collective bargaining and from the taxation that funds public services. It means, in sum, freedom from democracy. The negative freedom enjoyed by corporations and billionaires (freedom to be or to act without interference from others; as defined by Isaiah Berlin in his essay Two Concepts of Liberty4) intrudes upon the negative freedom the rest of us enjoy. As a result, the great flowering of freedom that has enhanced so many lives since the end of the Second World War is now at risk.

It was founded and is funded by Charles and David Koch.8 They run what they call ‘the biggest company you’ve never heard of’,9 and between them they are worth $43 billion.10 Koch Industries is a massive oil, gas, minerals, timber and chemicals company. Over the past fifteen years the brothers have poured at least $85 million into lobby groups arguing for lower taxes for the rich and weaker regulations for industry.11 The groups and politicians funded by the Kochs also lobby to destroy collective bargaining, to stop laws reducing carbon emissions, to stymie health care reform and to hobble attempts to control the banks. During the 2010 election cycle, Americans for Prosperity spent $45 million supporting its favoured candidates.12 But the Kochs’ greatest political triumph is the creation of the Tea Party movement. Taki Oldham’s film AstroTurf Wars shows Tea Party organisers from all over the Union reporting back to David Koch at their 2009 Defending the Dream Summit, explaining the events and protests they’ve started with AFP help.


pages: 353 words: 81,436

Buying Time: The Delayed Crisis of Democratic Capitalism by Wolfgang Streeck

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, banking crisis, basic income, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collective bargaining, corporate governance, creative destruction, David Graeber, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, financial deregulation, financial repression, fixed income, full employment, Gini coefficient, Growth in a Time of Debt, income inequality, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, late capitalism, liberal capitalism, means of production, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, Occupy movement, open borders, open economy, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, profit maximization, risk tolerance, shareholder value, too big to fail, union organizing, winner-take-all economy, Wolfgang Streeck

In subsequent years, the capitalist elites and their political allies looked for ways to extricate themselves from the obligations that they had had to incur for the sake of social peace and which, broadly speaking, they had been able to meet during the reconstruction phase. New product strategies to ward off market saturation, a growing labour surplus resulting from changes in the social structure, and not least the internationalization of markets and production systems, gradually opened up ways for firms to shake off the social policies and collective bargaining regimes that after 1968 threatened to subject them to a long-term profit squeeze.38 With time, this turned into an enduring liberalization process that brought about the powerful, wide-scale return of self-regulating markets, not anticipated in any theory and without precedent in the political economy of modern capitalism. Frankfurt crisis theory was not prepared for this: for a state which, to rid itself of social expectations it could no longer satisfy, deregulated and liberalized the capitalism it was supposed to place in the service of society; and for a capitalism which found its politically organized freedom from crises too constrictive.39 Liberalization, as control technology, relief of government from social responsibilities and liberation of capital at the same time, in fact progressed only slowly, especially so long as memories of 1968 remained alive, and was accompanied by numerous political and economic disruptions, until it reached its highest point so far in the present crisis of public finances and the world financial system.

For example, in line with the German model, they must incorporate debt ceilings into their constitution. They must also find ways of adapting their wage formation systems to macroeconomic stability goals defined by the EU, and must for this purpose be prepared to ‘reform’ their national institutions, if necessary against the resistance of their citizens and without regard for either national rights to free collective bargaining or the limits of the jurisdiction of European-level institutions. 3) Equally important are the areas in which the new EU statutes refrain from interfering in the autonomy of member-states. No provisions stipulate a minimum level of taxation, such as would limit fiscal competition within the single market.27 This keeps up the tradition of the European Monetary Union, whose convergence and admission criteria contained nothing about a maximum tolerable level of unemployment or social inequality. 4) EU institutions, whether already existing or still to be built, get ever more far-reaching rights to oversee the economic, social and fiscal policies of member-states, even prospectively and in matters before national parliaments.


pages: 273 words: 83,802

Hostile Environment: How Immigrants Became Scapegoats by Maya Goodfellow

Boris Johnson, British Empire, call centre, collective bargaining, colonial rule, creative destruction, deindustrialization, Donald Trump, European colonialism, falling living standards, G4S, housing crisis, illegal immigration, low skilled workers, mass immigration, megacity, moral panic, open borders, race to the bottom, Right to Buy, Scientific racism, Winter of Discontent, working poor

In Grunwick, the workforce was divided along race lines: most of the factory floor workers were people of colour; the drivers were black men and the managers were white. ‘It wasn’t that people were across the different races working on the same shop floor and were being paid differently. So that solidarity within factory was probably possible because of that,’ Dr Anitha says. Like many others, the Grunwick strike was about racism, but it could also be cast as concerning trade union recognition and collective bargaining. ‘It became … easier for trade unions to mobilise to defend workers who wanted to join the union rather than workers who were critical of the way the union was functioning.’ Alongside the Imperial Typewriters strike, people were laying down tools in Woolf’s rubber factory in Southall, Courtaulds’ Red Scar Mill in Preston and Mansfield Hosiery Mills in Derbyshire. Part of the reasons for these worker-led strikes was that with an unofficial colour bar in operation, people of colour were concentrated in low-skilled, insecure and dangerous jobs in sectors where there were labour shortages and unsociable working hours.

Thatcher restructured the economy away from the manufacturing sector, dismantled forms of wage protection, privatised and semi-privatised key industries, and oversaw a worsening of pay and conditions, all the while undermining trade union rights. She set out to defeat striking workers and systematically removed employment rights, restricting union activity, including making it illegal to picket away from your own workplace. These changes, paired with economic shifts, brought about the collapse of collective bargaining. The proportion of employees who were members of a trade union plummeted from 56 per cent to 31 per cent under the Conservatives.15 Rights became less about the collective and more about the individual. Labour, traditionally the party of the unions, were expected in 1997 to revive what Thatcher had sought to quash. New Labour made some important and necessary changes to the UK’s economy: the reduction of child poverty, introduction of the minimum wage and the establishment of Sure Start centres made a fundamental difference to peoples’ lives.


pages: 391 words: 22,799

To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise by Bethany Moreton

affirmative action, American Legislative Exchange Council, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, big-box store, Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, collective bargaining, corporate personhood, creative destruction, deindustrialization, desegregation, Donald Trump, estate planning, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frederick Winslow Taylor, George Gilder, global village, informal economy, invisible hand, liberation theology, longitudinal study, market fundamentalism, Mont Pelerin Society, mortgage tax deduction, Naomi Klein, new economy, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, prediction markets, price anchoring, Ralph Nader, RFID, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Stewart Brand, strikebreaker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, walkable city, Washington Consensus, white flight, Whole Earth Catalog, Works Progress Administration

Making common cause with probusiness Republicans, these segregationist Democrats broke the back of the labor and civil rights Left in the years immediately following the war with a pair of crucial initiatives: The antiÂ�union Taft-Â�Hartley Act of 1947 essentially halted the spread of Â�unions beyond their established territory in Northern industry by encouraging the states to pass “right-Â�to-Â�work” legislation. These laws made the beneÂ�fits of collective bargaining flow equally to those who paid Â�union dues and those who did not, thus giving workers no incentive to join the Â�union. Southern champions of industrial development lost no time in promoting their region’s antiÂ�unionism to lure facilities out of the Northeast. Arkansas, Wal-Â�Mart’s home state, passed one of the first “right-Â�to-Â�work” laws in 1947; by 1954, the entire South had enacted such legislation.11 When it came time to select sites for military bases and war contracts, the conservative conÂ�gresÂ�sional coalition made its power felt as well.

Kruse, White Flight: Atlanta and the Making of Modern Conservatism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006); Matthew D. Lassiter, The Silent Majority: Suburban Politics in the Sunbelt South (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006); McGirr, Suburban Warriors. 17. Bethany E. Moreton, “The Soul of the Service Economy: Wal-Mart and the Making of Christian Free Enterprise” (Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 2006), 47–49. 18. Nelson Lichtenstein, “From Corporatism to Collective Bargaining: Organized Labor and the Eclipse of Social Democracy in the Postwar Era,” in The Rise and 289 NOTES TO PAGES 41 – 4 5 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. Fall of the New Deal Order, 1930–1980, ed. Steve Fraser, Gary Gerstle (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989), 120. “Peace on Earth,” WMW, December 1972, 8. “Glowing Letters and Thank-You Notes,” WMW, May [copy II] 1975, 4.

See Urban issues Civil rights movement, 2, 39, 99, 266, 286n19 Clerks, 27, 51–54, 74-75, 78–79, 84, 136, 160. See also Associates 358 INDEX Clinton, Bill, 34, 46, 201, 204, 248, 252, 254, 257, 261–262, 280n12, 345n29 Clinton, Hillary Rodham, 34, 248, 254 Coca-Cola, 34, 243 Cold War, 2, 10, 37, 39, 164, 169, 171, 176, 193, 196, 218, 220–221, 224–225, 228, 232–233, 238, 238, 240, 242–243, 247, 249–251, 254, 257, 261 Collective bargaining, 39, 104 Colleges/universities, 38, 95, 133, 173–174, 226, 228–229, 232, 270, 319n40; Christian student orÂ�gaÂ�niÂ�zaÂ� tions, 87–88, 97–98; Walton management recruited from, 127, 131–132, 134–137; new technologies at, 138–141, 143; shift to business education, 138, 142, 145–163, 167–172; emphasis on free enterprise, 180–181, 183–184, 186–190, 192; student activism, 195–200, 202–205, 207–212, 217–218; Walton scholars at, 222, 224–225, 230–231, 233–238, 240–247, 251–252; foreign students at, 234–236, 240–243, 245–246.


pages: 665 words: 146,542

Money: 5,000 Years of Debt and Power by Michel Aglietta

bank run, banking crisis, Basel III, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, capital asset pricing model, capital controls, cashless society, central bank independence, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, corporate governance, David Graeber, debt deflation, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, double entry bookkeeping, energy transition, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, financial intermediation, floating exchange rates, forward guidance, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, German hyperinflation, income inequality, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of writing, invisible hand, joint-stock company, Kenneth Arrow, Kickstarter, liquidity trap, margin call, means of production, money market fund, moral hazard, Nash equilibrium, Network effects, Northern Rock, oil shock, planetary scale, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price stability, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, reserve currency, secular stagnation, seigniorage, shareholder value, special drawing rights, special economic zone, stochastic process, the payments system, the scientific method, too big to fail, trade route, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, Washington Consensus

The European ideal rapidly appeared not only as a means of putting an end to wars on the continent, but also of promoting a new and dynamic principle that could cohere labour societies. And this principle was social progress. Two institutions of social mediation were charged with putting this principle into practice: collective bargaining over wages, and redistribution via the state budget. There was a wide political consensus, across party divides, in favour of the notion of social progress and the legitimacy of the institutions tasked with promoting it. Collective bargaining over wages played a decisive role in this regard, aligning progress in real wages to productivity advances at the macroeconomic level, and moreover imposed limits on inequalities, within the terms of a stable wage structure in the major branches of industry. This encouraged regular and self-sustaining long-term growth, stimulated by booming mass consumption, urbanisation and the expansion of the economically active population.

In labour societies, the predominant debts are instead social debts. These result from the need to protect workers without jobs who are deprived of their means of existence. This is why the welfare state has become a principal institution of social cohesion. The welfare state brings together the rules of social legislation, of unions that represent employees’ and employers’ collective interests, and of negotiation procedures and collective bargaining. It is thus an essentially political institution, and as a result it differs from one nation to another. Thus, Anglo-Saxon social liberalism, Scandinavian social democracy, German ordoliberalism and French social corporatism constitute varieties of capitalism that differ in terms of their respective income distribution and production of public goods. But what all of them have in common is an enormous rise in social debt, in the form of state debt and (or) social security agencies, depending on how they are financed.


pages: 273 words: 93,419

Let them eat junk: how capitalism creates hunger and obesity by Robert Albritton

Bretton Woods, California gold rush, clean water, collective bargaining, computer age, corporate personhood, creative destruction, deindustrialization, Food sovereignty, Haber-Bosch Process, illegal immigration, immigration reform, invisible hand, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Kickstarter, land reform, late capitalism, means of production, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, price stability, profit maximization, profit motive, South Sea Bubble, the built environment, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, upwardly mobile

Cheap and plentiful oil and natural gas which fuelled a petrochemical revolution of new technologies and the mass consumption of consumer durables.11 Oligopoly in the dominant economic sectors which increased not only the economic power but the political and ideological power of large corporations. Relative industrial peace made possible by a rate of growth in productivity and profits which could sustain a collective bargaining process that generally improved real wages, benefits and working conditions in the main sectors of industrial accumulation. A strong sense of togetherness generated by victory in World War II and maintained by the cold war. A welfare state which made huge investments in material and social infrastructure. Rapid population growth. Cheap land. Cheap food. Expansion of every kind of debt. A lack of concern for environmental issues.

Index A abstract theory 10–12, 18–50 see also deep structure, inner logic, pure capitalism accountability 205–10 see also democracy addiction 43, 45, 95–6, 177, 179, 222 advertising 70, 167–8, 172–4, 177 Africa 153, 156, 158 agriculture 7, 11, 18, 32, 40, 125, 127, 128, 132, 134, 141, 158, 185, 202, 205 American 8, 135, 148–9 non-food crops 7, 142, 157 (see also cotton, tobacco) see also aid to agriculture, exportoriented agriculture, family farms, industrial farms aid 134 see also aid to agriculture, food aid, foreign aid AIDS 153, 178 Alberta tar sands 148, 206 see also peak oil algae blooms 156, 159 see also chemical fertilizer allergies 118, 161–2 American hegemony 52, 76, 91, 125 see also US hegemony American Council on Science and Health 195 American Sugar Association 188 anaemia 107 anti-depressants 178 antibiotics 103 anxiety 173 Archer Daniels Midland 186, 189 asthma 149 atomism 72–3 see also individualism, islandization, possessive individualism Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) 63, 114, 173 austerity policies 135 see also structural adjustment policies automobile 57, 59–60, 72–3 see also car-dependent development B Baby Milk Action Group 96 balance of payments 58, 68, 220 balance of trade 136, 220 banana workers 136–8, 143 Bangladesh 142 Bernay, Edward 168 biodiesel 142 see also biofuel, ethanol biofuel 151–2 blacklisting 127 Borneo 155 bottom trawling 160 bovine growth hormone 116, 236 boycotts 206 brand loyalty 166, 169, 173, 176 see also advertising, marketing Brandt, Allan 8, 168, 170 Brazil 139, 140, 151, 155 [ 251 ] 252 INDEX Bretton Woods monetary system 68 Buffet, Warren 84 bulimia 176 Bush, President George W. 149, 152 Butz, Earl (US Secretary of Agriculture) 59, 68–9, 75 C Califano, Joseph 170 California 127, 159 cancer 63 see also carcinogen capitalism x, 8–11, 50–1, 61, 82–3, 93, 122, 124, 126, 178, 183, 184, 190, 197, 201–2, 204, 210, 213 capitalist farms 130–1, 214 capitalist ideology 73–4, 165, 168, 183, 196–7 car-dependent development 60, 64 see also automobile carbon dioxide (CO2) 149, 151, 154 carbon tax 209 carcinogens 111–12, 114, 137, 178, 191, 194 Carson, Rachel 61, 77, 111 causality 169–70 causes ix, 90, 180 Center for Consumer Freedom 188, 196 Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) 93, 174 Channel One 176 chemical fertilizers 58, 129, 149, 151, 159–60, 217 chemicalization 83, 158–9, 202 see also chemical fertilizers, nemagon, pesticides Chicago Board of Trade 153 child labour 138–9 see also slavery China 122, 142, 155, 175 choice 165–81, 187 see also consumer sovereignty, freedom chronic illnesses 94 class 99, 168, 213 class struggle 12 Clinton, President Bill 100 coal 151 cocoa 135, 138, 202 codex alimentarius 97, 188 coffee 135, 140–3, 202 cold war 58–9, 61–2, 74–6 collective bargaining 127 colonialism 18, 25, 44–5, 71, 124, 153 see also developing countries command economy 202 commodification 12, 21, 37–8, 39, 214–15 commodities 12, 20 commodity futures 89, 108, 142, 145, 153 see also Chicago Board of Trade concentration/centralization 25, 45, 114, 120, 131–2, 137, 187, 216 competition 11, 26, 43, 127–8, 135 confined animal feeding operation (CAFO) 101–2, 150, 153, 155, 159, 163 consumer sovereignty 165, 178–80 see also choice, freedom, rights consumerism xii, 42, 68–9, 72, 125, 173, 176, 180 consumers 28, 144, 166, 178 consumption 9, 165 contradiction x, 25 see also irrationality, rationality cooking skills 121–2 cooperation 144, 200–11 see also movements coral 159 corn 108, 111, 136, 151–3 see also ethanol, subsidies corporate lobbies 186 corporations xi, 8, 14–15, 45, 60–1, 70, 87, 123, 130, 132, 136, 138, 141–2, 145, 147–8, 162, 165, 168–9, 172, 183,–4, 186, 193–5, 197, 203, 206–7, 218–19 Costa Rica 138 INDEX cotton 111, 129, 143 see also non-food crops, pesticides, subsidies crises 12, 25, 38, 39, 42, 216 ecological crisis 146–7 see also food crisis D Dalley, George 187 death rate 127, 130 debt 42–3 64, 66, 68, 70, 122, 129, 134, 141, 205, 208 ecological debt 43, 147 health debt 43 decline of civilization 7 deep cause/deep structure ix, 12, 16, 18–50, 52, 106 see also abstract theory, inner logic, levels of analysis, pure capitalism deforestation 35, 86, 102, 140 142–3, 151, 155, 157 democracy x, 9, 19, 52, 85, 162, 166, 181, 197, 206 see also accountability, equality, freedom, inequality, liberaldemocracy, rights democratization of corporations xii, 14, 15, 205–8 of markets xii, 15, 208–10 Department of Agriculture (US) 171 deportation 126–7 depression 94, 222 desertification 157 see also deforestation developing countries 45, 58–9, 69, 76, 78, 85–6, 104, 106, 111, 129, 134–37, 140–3, 162, 193, 203, 205 diabetes 94, 96, 99, 100 diet 174, 191 distributive justice 8, 10, 16, 91, 142, 194, 209–10 division of labour 6 Doll, Sir Richard 194–5 Dominican Republic 128 253 drought 158 see also water dumping 59, 129, 135, 205 see also developing countries, food prices, subsidies E E.


pages: 343 words: 91,080

Uberland: How Algorithms Are Rewriting the Rules of Work by Alex Rosenblat

"side hustle", Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, big-box store, call centre, cashless society, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, disruptive innovation, don't be evil, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, future of work, gender pay gap, gig economy, Google Chrome, income inequality, information asymmetry, Jaron Lanier, job automation, job satisfaction, Lyft, marginal employment, Mark Zuckerberg, move fast and break things, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, performance metric, Peter Thiel, price discrimination, Ralph Waldo Emerson, regulatory arbitrage, ride hailing / ride sharing, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, social software, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, TaskRabbit, Tim Cook: Apple, transportation-network company, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, union organizing, universal basic income, urban planning, Wolfgang Streeck, Zipcar

Rosenblat, “What Motivates Gig Economy Workers.” 16. David Gutman, “Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Seeking to Block Seattle Law Allowing Uber and Lyft Drivers to Unionize,” Seattle Times, August 1, 2017, www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/judge-dismisses-lawsuit-seeking-to-block-seattle-law-allowing-uber-and-lyft-drivers-to-unionize/. 17. Seattle.gov, “For-Hire Driver Collective Bargaining,” n.d., www.seattle.gov/business-regulations/taxis-for-hires-and-tncs/for-hire-driver-collective-bargaining. 18. Lindsey D. Cameron, “Making Out While Driving: Control, Coordination, and Its Consequences for Algorithmic Labor” (PhD diss., Stephen M. Ross School of Business, 2018). 19. Aaron Smith, “Gig Work, Online Selling and Home Sharing,” Pew Research Center, November 17, 2016, www.pewinternet.org/2016/11/17/gig-work-online-selling-and-home-sharing/. 20.


pages: 326 words: 88,905

Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt by Chris Hedges, Joe Sacco

Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate personhood, dumpster diving, Exxon Valdez, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Howard Zinn, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, laissez-faire capitalism, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, mass incarceration, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, union organizing, urban decay, wage slave, white flight, women in the workforce

One dies, get another.”30 In the 1920s, labor contractors, known as crew leaders, rounded up poor, itinerant workers and began to ship them north to harvest the summer crops and then back south again for the winter crops. These migrant workers, largely African American, were left out of the labor protections put in place later by the New Deal, including collective bargaining, part of a backroom deal Franklin Roosevelt made with white Southern politicians, who wanted African-Americans kept out of unions.31 Collective bargaining among agricultural laborers, while not illegal in Florida, is unprotected under the state labor laws. Workers who attempt to form a union can be summarily fired.32 “We used to own our slaves,” a grower said in Edward R. Murrow’s 1960 television exposé Harvest of Shame. “Now we just rent them.”33 Despite the termination of the convict-lease system in 1923 by Florida and Alabama—the last two states to end the practice—incidents involving slavery and forced labor continue to be uncovered.


pages: 323 words: 90,868

The Wealth of Humans: Work, Power, and Status in the Twenty-First Century by Ryan Avent

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, Airbnb, American energy revolution, assortative mating, autonomous vehicles, Bakken shale, barriers to entry, basic income, Bernie Sanders, BRICs, business cycle, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer age, creative destruction, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, Erik Brynjolfsson, eurozone crisis, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, falling living standards, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Ford paid five dollars a day, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, future of work, gig economy, global supply chain, global value chain, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, intangible asset, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, inventory management, invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, knowledge economy, low skilled workers, lump of labour, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, mass immigration, means of production, new economy, performance metric, pets.com, post-work, price mechanism, quantitative easing, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, reshoring, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, savings glut, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, software is eating the world, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, TaskRabbit, The Future of Employment, The Nature of the Firm, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade liberalization, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, very high income, working-age population

Such organizations, in addition, are seen as important counterweights to owners of other productive factors – either land or capital – who, thanks to the relative scarcity of their contribution to production, enjoy significant bargaining power in negotiations with labour. It is no coincidence that trade unionism emerged as a powerful political force over the course of a tumultuous nineteenth century, a century in which workers often suffered miserable conditions and pay while capitalists prospered. Collective bargaining addressed the difficulty created by the relative abundance of labour. In the absence of organization, a firm faced little pressure to increase the share of the economic surplus created, when a worker was hired, that flowed to the workers themselves. If the worker didn’t like it, he could bugger off, and there would be a long line of replacements waiting to take his spot. Organization sought to eliminate the line of waiting replacements.

Acemoglu, Daron ageing populations agency, concept of Airbnb Amazon American Medical Association (AMA) anarchism Andreessen, Marc Anglo-Saxon economies Apple the iPhone the iPod artisanal goods and services Atkinson, Anthony Atlanta, Georgia austerity policies automation in car plants fully autonomous trucks of ‘green jobs’ during industrial revolution installation work as resistant to low-pay as check on of menial/routine work self-driving cars and technological deskilling automobiles assembly-line techniques automated car plants and dematerialization early days of car industry fully autonomous trucks self-driving cars baseball Baumol, William Belgium Bernanke, Ben Bezos, Jeff black plague (late Middle Ages) Boston, Massachusetts Brazil BRIC era Bridgewater Associates Britain deindustrialization education in extensions of franchise in financial crisis (2008) Great Exhibition (London 1851) housing wealth in and industrial revolution Labour Party in liberalization in political fractionalization in real wages in social capital in surpassed by US as leading nation wage subsidies in Brontë, Charlotte Brynjolfsson, Erik bubbles, asset-price Buffalo Bill (William Cody) BuzzFeed Cairncross, Frances, The Death of Distance (1997) capital ‘deepening’ infrastructure investment investment in developing world career, concept of cars see automobiles Catalan nationalism Central African Republic central banks Chait, Jonathan Charlotte chemistry, industrial Chicago meat packers in nineteenth-century expansion of World’s Columbia Exposition (1893) China Deng Xiaoping’s reforms economic slow-down in era of rapid growth foreign-exchange reserves ‘green jobs’ in illiberal institutions in inequality in iPod assembly in technological transformation in wage levels in Chorus (content-management system) Christensen, Clayton Cisco cities artisanal goods and services building-supply restrictions growth of and housing costs and industrial revolution and information membership battles in rich/skilled and social capital clerical work climate change Clinton, Hillary Coase, Ronald Columbia University, School of Mines communications technology communism communities of affinity computing app-based companies capability thresholds cloud services cycles of experimentation desktop market disk-drive industry ‘enterprise software’ products exponential progress narrative as general purpose technology hardware and software infrastructure history of ‘Moore’s Law’ and productivity switches transistors vacuum tubes see also digital revolution; software construction industry regulations on Corbyn, Jeremy Corliss steam engine corporate power Cowen, Tyler craft producers Craigslist creative destruction the Crystal Palace, London Dalio, Ray Dallas, Texas debt deindustrialization demand, chronically weak dematerialization Detroit developing economies and capital investment and digital revolution era of rapid growth and industrialization pockets of wealth in and ‘reshoring’ phenomenon and sharp slowdown and social capital see also emerging economies digital revolution and agency and company cultures and developing economies and distance distribution of benefits of dotcom tech boom emergence of and global imbalances and highly skilled few and industrial institutions and information flows investment in social capital niche markets pace of change and paradox of potential productivity and output and secular stagnation start-ups and technological deskilling techno-optimism techno-pessimism as tectonic economic transformation and trading patterns web journalism see also automation; computing; globalization discrimination and exclusion ‘disruption’, phenomenon of distribution of wealth see inequality; redistribution; wealth and income distribution dotcom boom eBay economics, classical The Economist education in emerging economies during industrial revolution racial segregation in USA and scarcity see also university education electricity Ellison, Glenn Ellison, Sara Fisher emerging economies deindustrialization economic growth in education in foreign-exchange reserves growth in global supply chains highly skilled workers in see also developing economies employment and basic income policy cheap labour as boost to and dot.com boom in Europe and financial crisis (2008) ‘green jobs’ low-pay sector minimum wage impact niche markets in public sector ‘reshoring’ phenomenon as rising globally and social contexts and social membership as source of personal identity and structural change trilemma in USA see also labour; wages Engels, Friedrich environmental issues Etsy euro- zone Europe extreme populist politics liberalized economies political fractionalization in European Union Facebook face-recognition technology factors of production land see also capital; labour ‘Factory Asia’ factory work assembly-line techniques during industrial revolution family fascism Federal Reserve financial crisis (2008) financial markets cross-border capital flows in developing economies Finland firms and companies Coase’s work on core competencies culture of dark matter (intangible capital) and dematerialization and ‘disruption’ ‘firm-specific’ knowledge and information flows internal incentive structures pay of top executives shifting boundaries of social capital of and social wealth start-ups Ford, Martin, Rise of the Robots (2015) Ford Motor Company fracking France franchise, electoral Friedman, Milton Fukuyama, Francis Gates, Bill gender discrimination general purpose technologies enormous benefits from exponential progress and skilled labour supporting infrastructure and time lags see also digital revolution Germany ‘gig economy’ Glaeser, Ed global economy growth in supply chains imbalances lack of international cooperation savings glut and social consensus globalization hyperglobalization and secular stagnation and separatist movements Goldman Sachs Google Gordon, Robert Gothenburg, Sweden Great Depression Great Depression (1930s) Great Exhibition, London (1851) Great Recession Great Stagnation Greece ‘green jobs’ growth, economic battle over spoils of boom (1994-2005) and classical economists as consistent in rich countries decline of ‘labour share’ dotcom boom emerging economies gains not flowing to workers and industrial revolution Kaldor’s ‘stylized facts of’ and Keynes during liberal era pie metaphor in post-war period and quality of institutions and rich/elite cities rich-poor nation gap and skilled labour guilds Hansen, Alvin Hayes, Chris, The Twilight of the Elites healthcare and medicine hedge funds and private equity firms Holmes, Oliver Wendell Hong Kong housing in Bay-Area NIMBY campaigns against soaring prices pre-2008 crisis zoning and regulations Houston, Texas Huffington Post human capital Hungary IBM identity, personal immigration and ethno-nationalist separatism and labour markets in Nordic countries and social capital income distribution see inequality; redistribution; wealth and income distribution India Indonesia industrial revolution automation during and economic growth and growth of cities need for better-educated workers and productivity ‘second revolution’ and social change and wages and World’s Fairs inequality and education levels between firms and housing wealth during industrial revolution during liberal era between nations pay of top executives rise of in emerging economies and secular stagnation in Sweden wild contingency of wealth see also rich people; wealth and income distribution inflation in 1970s hyperinflation information technology see computing Intel interest rates International Space Station (ISS) iRobot ISIS Italy Jacksonville, Florida Jacquard, Joseph Marie Japan journalism Kaldor, Nicholas Keynes, John Maynard Kurzweil. Ray labour abundance as good problem bargaining power cognitive but repetitive collective bargaining and demographic issues discrimination and exclusion global growth of workforce and immigration liberalization in 1970s/80s ‘lump of labour’ fallacy occupational licences organized and proximity reallocation to growing industries retraining and skill acquisition and scarcity and social value work as a positive good see also employment Labour Party, British land scarcity Latvia Le Pen, Jean-Marie Le Pen, Marine legal profession Lehman Brothers collapse (2008) Lepore, Jill liberalization, economic (from 1970s) Linkner, Josh, The Road to Reinvention London Lucas, Robert Lyft maker-taker distinction Malthus, Reverend Thomas Manchester Mandel, Michael Mankiw, Gregory marketing and public relations Marshall, Alfred Marx, Karl Mason, Paul, Postcapitalism (2015) McAfee, Andrew medicine and healthcare ‘mercantilist’ world Mercedes Benz Mexico Microsoft mineral industries minimum wage Mokyr, Joel Monroe, President James MOOCs (‘massive open online courses’) Moore, Gordon mortality rates Mosaic (web browser) music, digital nation states big communities of affinity inequality between as loci of redistribution and social capital nationalist and separatist movements Netherlands Netscape New York City Newsweek NIMBYism Nordic and Scandinavian economies North Carolina North Dakota Obama, Barack oil markets O’Neill, Jim Oracle Orbán, Viktor outsourcing Peretti, Jonah Peterson Institute for International Economics pets.com Philadelphia Centennial Fair (1876) Philippines Phoenix, Arizona Piketty, Thomas, Capital in the Twenty-First Century (2013) Poland political institutions politics fractionalization in Europe future/emerging narratives geopolitical forces human wealth narrative left-wing looming upheaval/conflict Marxism nationalist and separatist movements past unrest and conflict polarization in USA radicalism and extremism realignment revolutionary right-wing rise of populist outsiders and scarcity social membership battles Poor Laws, British print media advertising revenue productivity agricultural artisanal goods and services Baumol’s Cost Disease and cities and dematerialization and digital revolution and employment trilemma and financial crisis (2008) and Henry Ford growth data in higher education of highly skilled few and industrial revolution minimum wage impact paradox of in service sector and specialization and wage rates see also factors of production professional, technical or managerial work and education levels and emerging economies the highly skilled few and industrial revolution and ‘offshoring’ professional associations skilled cities professional associations profits Progressive Policy Institute property values proximity public spending Putnam, Robert Quakebot quantitative easing Race Against the Machine, Brynjolfsson and McAfee (2011) railways Raleigh, North Carolina Reagan, Ronald redistribution and geopolitical forces during liberal era methods of nation state as locus of as a necessity as politically hard and societal openness wealth as human rent, economic Republican Party, US ‘reshoring’ phenomenon Resseger, Matthew retail sector retirement age Ricardo, David rich people and maker-taker distinction wild contingency of wealth Robinson, James robots Rodrik, Dani Romney, Mitt rule of law Russia San Francisco San Jose Sanders, Bernie sanitation SAP Saudi Arabia savings glut, global ‘Say’s Law’ Scalia, Antonin Scandinavian and Nordic economies scarcity and labour political effects of Schleicher, David Schwartz, Anna scientists Scotland Sears Second World War secular stagnation global spread of possible solutions shale deposits sharing economies Silicon Valley Singapore skilled workers and education levels and falling wages the highly skilled few and industrial revolution ‘knowledge-intensive’ goods and services reshoring phenomenon technological deskilling see also professional, technical or managerial work Slack (chat service) Slate (web publication) smartphone culture Smith, Adam social capital and American Constitution baseball metaphor and cities ‘deepening’ definition/nature of and dematerialization and developing economies and erosion of institutions of firms and companies and good government and housing wealth and immigration and income distribution during industrial revolution and liberalization and nation-states productive application of and rich-poor nation gap and Adam Smith and start-ups social class conflict middle classes and NIMBYism social conditioning of labour force working classes social democratic model social reform social wealth and social membership software ‘enterprise software’ products supply-chain management Solow, Robert Somalia South Korea Soviet Union, dissolution of (1991) specialization Star Trek state, role of steam power Subramanian, Arvind suburbanization Sweden Syriza party Taiwan TaskRabbit taxation telegraphy Tesla, Nikola Thatcher, Margaret ‘tiger’ economies of South-East Asia Time Warner Toyota trade China as ‘mega-trader’ ‘comparative advantage’ theory and dematerialization global supply chains liberalization shaping of by digital revolution Adam Smith on trade unions transhumanism transport technology self-driving cars Trump, Donald Twitter Uber UK Independence Party United States of America (USA) 2016 Presidential election campaign average income Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS) Constitution deindustrialization education in employment in ethno-nationalist diversity of financial crisis (2008) housing costs in housing wealth in individualism in industrialization in inequality in Jim Crow segregation labour scarcity in Young America liberalization in minimum wage in political polarization in post-crisis profit rates productivity boom of 1990s real wage data rising debt levels secular stagnation in shale revolution in social capital in and social wealth surpasses Britain as leading nation wage subsidies in university education advanced degrees downward mobility of graduates MOOCs (‘massive open online courses’) and productivity see also education urbanization utopias, post-work Victoria, Queen video-gamers Virginia, US state Volvo Vox wages basic income policy Baumol’s Cost Disease cheap labour and employment growth and dot.com boom and financial crisis (2008) and flexibility and Henry Ford government subsidies and housing costs and immigration and industrial revolution low-pay as check on automation minimum wage and productivity the ‘reservation wage’ as rising in China rising in emerging economies and scarcity in service sector and skill-upgrading approach stagnation of and supply of graduates Wandsworth Washington D.C.


pages: 90 words: 27,452

No More Work: Why Full Employment Is a Bad Idea by James Livingston

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, business cycle, collective bargaining, delayed gratification, full employment, future of work, Internet of things, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, labor-force participation, late capitalism, liberal capitalism, obamacare, post-work, Project for a New American Century, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, surplus humans, The Future of Employment, union organizing, working poor

In these historical terms, the practical question can’t be how to put people back to work, but how to detach income from employment. II The contemporary advocates of workers’ cooperatives and trade unions are no less Protestant (or Hegelian, or Marxist) in their insistence that work is the essence of human nature—and so must be protected against the degradation of wage labor, on the one hand, or protected by contractual agreements (collective bargaining), on the other. It’s clear at any rate that the American version of the movement for cooperative workers’ ownership is intellectually grounded in more than the grand success of Mondragon, the huge worker-owned enterprise in Spain that has astonished the world with its efficiencies. In the United States, this movement is also inspired by the nineteenth-century antislavery argument that there could be “no property in man”—the argument that one’s capacity to produce value through work is an inalienable element of being human, a natural right that can’t be bought or sold.


pages: 558 words: 168,179

Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right by Jane Mayer

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, American Legislative Exchange Council, anti-communist, Bakken shale, bank run, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, centre right, clean water, Climategate, Climatic Research Unit, collective bargaining, corporate raider, crony capitalism, David Brooks, desegregation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, energy security, estate planning, Fall of the Berlin Wall, George Gilder, housing crisis, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, job automation, low skilled workers, mandatory minimum, market fundamentalism, mass incarceration, Mont Pelerin Society, More Guns, Less Crime, Nate Silver, New Journalism, obamacare, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Powell Memorandum, Ralph Nader, Renaissance Technologies, road to serfdom, Robert Mercer, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Chicago School, the scientific method, University of East Anglia, Unsafe at Any Speed, War on Poverty, working poor

As the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel noted in 2011, the Bradley Foundation was “one of the most powerful philanthropic forces behind America’s conservative movement” and “the financial backer behind public policy experiments that started in the state and spread across the nation—including welfare reform, public vouchers for private schools and, this year, cutbacks in public employee benefits and collective bargaining.” As Grebe later acknowledged about Walker’s meteoric rise to The New York Times, “At the risk of being immodest, I probably lent some credibility to his campaign early on.” As a college dropout with no exceptional charisma or charm, Walker might not ordinarily have been marked for high office, but Americans for Prosperity, which had a large chapter in Wisconsin, had provided him with a field operation and speaking platform at its Tea Party rallies when he was still just the Milwaukee county executive.

As a college dropout with no exceptional charisma or charm, Walker might not ordinarily have been marked for high office, but Americans for Prosperity, which had a large chapter in Wisconsin, had provided him with a field operation and speaking platform at its Tea Party rallies when he was still just the Milwaukee county executive. The Kochs’ political organization had been fighting the state’s powerful public employee unions there since 2007. The fight was freighted with larger significance. In 1959, Wisconsin had become the first state to allow its public employees to form unions and engage in collective bargaining, which conservatives detested in part because the unions provided a big chunk of muscle to the Democratic Party. “We go back a long way on this in Wisconsin, and in other states,” Tim Phillips, the head of Americans for Prosperity, acknowledged to Politico. In the past, Phillips had spoken enviously of the unions as the Left’s “army on the ground.” Walker’s anti-union, antitax, and small-government message harmonized perfectly with the Kochs’ philosophy and also served their business interests.

Fifteen days after Walker was inaugurated, in January 2011, Hendricks was captured in what she thought was a private chat, urging the governor to go after the unions. Looking glamorous but impatient, the sixty-something widow pressed Walker to turn Wisconsin into a “completely red” “right-to-work” state. Walker assured her that he had a plan. He had kept voters in the dark about it during his campaign, but he confided to Hendricks that his first step was to “deal with collective bargaining for all public employees’ unions.” This, he assured her, would “divide and conquer” the labor movement. Evidently, this was what Hendricks wanted to hear. She had amassed a fortune estimated at $3.6 billion from ABC Supply, the nation’s largest wholesale distributor of roofing, windows, and siding, which she and her late husband, Ken, founded in 1982. Despite her phenomenal success, Hendricks said she was worried that America was becoming “a socialist ideological nation.”


pages: 102 words: 30,120

Why Wages Rise by F. A. Harper

business cycle, collective bargaining, fixed income, full employment, means of production, wage slave

Let me illustrate. A Wage Contract for My Boy In the year 2012, the Lord willing, my boy will be old enough to retire at age 65. He will then be in the final year of what I hope will have been a worthy occupational life, just prior to being forced to retire. Here is a proposal. Let us say that I want to help him by bargaining for his wage for that year — the year 2012. As his representative at this collective bargaining table, I shall herewith state my proposal and give my reasons for my demands. Then if anyone will accept the offer, we shall see if we can work out the other minor details of the agreement. My proposal is that you pay him a wage of $29.99 per hour for the year 2012. This figure is arrived at by the same method now coming into vogue in negotiations over wage contracts. Contracts are being offered for a period of five years, or perhaps more.


pages: 261 words: 103,244

Economists and the Powerful by Norbert Haring, Norbert H. Ring, Niall Douglas

"Robert Solow", accounting loophole / creative accounting, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, asset allocation, bank run, barriers to entry, Basel III, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, buy and hold, central bank independence, collective bargaining, commodity trading advisor, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, diversified portfolio, financial deregulation, George Akerlof, illegal immigration, income inequality, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, Jean Tirole, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge worker, law of one price, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, mandatory minimum, market bubble, market clearing, market fundamentalism, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, new economy, obamacare, old-boy network, open economy, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, pension reform, Ponzi scheme, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, Renaissance Technologies, rolodex, Sergey Aleynikov, shareholder value, short selling, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, ultimatum game, union organizing, Vilfredo Pareto, working-age population, World Values Survey

Another spinoff, American Axle, succeeded in cutting wages by about a third (Holmes and Snider 2011). For Germany, a study of the automobile and telecommunications industries has shown that outsourcing parts has cut the wage bill. The vertical disintegration of major German employers contributed to the disorganization of Germany’s dual system of in-plant and sectoral negotiations. Subcontractors, subsidiaries and temporary agencies often have no collective bargaining institutions or are covered by different firm-level and sectoral agreements. Moving employers to these firms introduced new organizational boundaries and disrupted traditional bargaining structures to the detriment of unions (Doellgast and Greer 2007). For the US, a different study shows that contract cleaning firms and security guards employed by a service contractor receive substantially lower wages and benefits than employees doing the same jobs employed 186 ECONOMISTS AND THE POWERFUL by manufacturing firms.

D. 13 American Economic Association ix, 10, 17, 20, 26–7, 44 American Economic Review 8, 20, 26–7 American International Group (AIG) 70, 90–91 Anglo-Saxon economics ix Arrow, Kenneth 7, 23–4, 212; see also impossibility theorem (Arrow’s) asset bubble 104 asymmetric information: see information, asymmetric AT&T 147 authoritarianism 24, 210 average cost 148, 151 Bank of America 77, 86, 94 barriers to entry 54, 160 Basel III Accord 104–5 Bear Stearns 90, 96, 107, 111 Becker, Gary S. 186 Bemis, Edward 9–10 Bentham, Jeremy 11 Berlin, Isaiah 25 Bernays, Edward 15–17 Bill of Rights (US) 208 Bolsa Família program 41 Boskin Commission 36 Bourdieu, Pierre 25, 115, 160 Bridgestone (tire manufacturer) 163–4, 166–7 British Empire ix, 16, 100 Buchanan, James 23–4 Buffett, Warren 93, 107–9 Bullionists 2 Bureau of Labor Statistics 32–3, 35 capitalism vii–viii, ix, 2, 5–6, 10, 18–19, 21, 31, 46, 142, 153, 158, 165 central bank 43, 67, 79–88, 104–5 CEO: see chief executive officer (CEO) Chicago, University of 10, 17, 19, 26, 27, 44, 80, 84, 168, 186, 193 chief executive officer (CEO) xi, 16, 47, 61, 70, 93, 95–6, 103, 107–13, 115–27, 132, 138–9, 215, 217 Chrysler xi, 113 Citicorp (bank) 43 Citigroup (bank) xi, 61, 63, 96, 105, 112, 125 Clark, John Bates 6, 10–11, 155, 193 classical value theory 5 Cold War 2, 18, 21, 25–8, 46 collective bargaining 185 Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CTFC) 90, 92 Commons, John R. 8–10 communism xii, 2, 19, 21, 25, 139 comparative advantage 4 Condorcet, Marquis de 23 conflict 165 consumption viii, 11, 13, 32, 78, 158, 192, 203, 211 control fraud 94–5 convergence vii 242 ECONOMISTS AND THE POWERFUL cooperation 73–5, 165, 167, 170, 198 cooperative 102 Cornell University 10 corporate elite x, xii, 115, 117, 140 corporate governance 92, 119, 127, 135, 136 corporate government 135 corporate management 109 corporation tax 139 corruption 220 credit x, xi, 29, 48–50, 59–60, 62, 65, 71, 73, 75, 77–84, 90–91, 95–8, 100, 104, 110, 149, 183 credit default swap 91, 93 CTFC: see Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CTFC) Darwinism 167 Debreu, Gerard 7 demand curve 146 democracy 18, 207, 211–13, 220 depreciation 33, 147 derivatives 67, 90–93, 96–7 Deutsche Bank 105, 121 disability adjusted life expectancy vii discrimination 130, 186–7 earnings management 129–30 economic growth xi, 80 economic policy xi, 46, 66, 76, 152 economic utility 4–5, 13 economics, mainstream viii, x–xi, xiii, 1, 29, 47, 136, 145, 164, 170, 208, 211, 214 economics, neoclassical ix, xii, 6, 8, 10–11, 13, 21–2, 25, 30, 38, 42, 45, 141, 143–4, 153–5, 157–60, 163–4, 168, 170–71, 173, 180–82, 188, 191–2, 210, 213 economies of scale 3, 54, 152, 161 economies of scope 54 Edgeworth, Francis Y. 10 efficiency vii, x, xi, xii, 13, 19, 25, 39, 43, 48, 62, 73, 101, 108, 136–7, 143, 144, 146–7, 149, 156, 160, 170, 176, 179, 183, 190, 193, 197, 202–4, 216, 219 efficient markets x Ely, Richard T. 9–10 employment protection 188, 200–203, 205 Enron 52, 92, 98, 110, 128, 132, 217 entrenchment 126, 135 equality of opportunity vii–ix, xii, 37, 39–41, 45, 53, 114, 124, 172 equality of outcome vii equilibrium x, 6–7, 37, 47, 146, 159, 161, 181–2, 197, 208 euro ix, 67, 82, 102 European Central Bank 103, 189, 215 European Commission/Union 67, 152 executive compensation 120–21, 138 exploitation 6, 156, 209, 212 exports 2, 34, 180–81 fairness ix, 13, 37, 39–40, 160, 164–6, 169–70, 177, 220 Fannie Mae (US government subsidizer of mortgages) 217 fear, uncertainty, doubt (FUD) 145 Federal Reserve (US) 43–4, 69–70, 85, 87–92, 143, 215 feedback loop 40, 216, 220 fiat money 75, 81 filibuster (US antilegislative maneuver) 218 financial industry xi, 44, 46–8, 51, 54–6, 64, 70, 89, 91–2, 121, 129, 217 financial markets xi, 47, 92, 108, 110, 128 financial rating agencies: see rating agencies financial sector xi, 43–4, 47–8, 53–4, 60, 64, 69, 79, 81, 83, 88–9, 100–101, 103, 105 Financial Stability Board 103 First (Workingmen’s) International 5 first mover advantage 132 Fisher, Irving 10, 13, 60, 75, 81, 83–4, 214 Fitch (ratings agency) 97 fixed costs 143 INDEX Fortune (magazine) 128 Fortune 500 (index) 49, 139 forwards (financial instrument) 67 founding fathers (of the United States) 207, 218 Freddie Mac (US government subsidizer of mortgages) 217 free market 6–7, 24, 46, 84, 147, 188, 193, 209 free riding 24, 37, 164 free trade 3–4, 16, 46, 209 freedom viii, 10, 18, 21, 25, 80, 94, 188, 191, 218 Freud, Sigmund 15 Friedman, Milton 44, 57, 81 front running (trading strategy) 65–6 FUD: see fear, uncertainty, doubt (FUD) fund managers 56–8, 63–4, 68, 134 futures (financial instrument) 67 Galbraith, John Kenneth 11, 74 GDP: see gross domestic product (GDP) General Motors xi, 16, 184–5 global financial crisis ix, 90; see also Great Financial Crisis God 24 gold 2, 72–7, 79–80, 86–7, 89 golden parachutes 112 Goldman Sachs 47, 49, 54, 56, 63, 66, 69, 88, 93, 105, 121, 215 goodwill 131 Great Depression 11, 70, 80, 138–9, 181, 204 Great Financial Crisis 79, 100, 111, 136; see also global financial crisis