Democratic Left

Expand Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 Must be Expanded to Provide Paid Leave

 By Peg Strobel and Bill Barclay

Oct. 3 is the expected day when federal legislation will be introduced calling for paid family and medical leave. DSA endorses a policy of paid parental family and medical leave. A group called MomsRising is hosting a “blog carnival” that day to draw attention to the issue and the legislation. We submitted the blog post below as DSA's contribution to the carnival.


Read more

Breaking the Deadlock

Given the insanity coming out of Washington, D.C. (or should we say emanating from right-wing state capitals and gerrymandered political districts around the country), building a left-wing movement in the United States is more important than ever.

DSA’s national convention is a time to gather with democratic socialists from around the country and exchange political ideas and activist skills. Our community can feel diffuse much of the time, but at conventions we spend three days re-energizing and making future plans for building our movement.

Register now!

Read more

A Century and Counting: The Campaign for National Health Insurance

By Gerald Friedman

“You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.” -Winston Churchill

The campaign for universal health insurance passed the century mark last year, the centennial of Theodore Roosevelt’s 1912 Progressive Party platform calling for national social insurance. Since then we came close to establishing the type of national health insurance system found in every other affluent democracy several times.  Health insurance was included along with old age pensions, welfare, and unemployment insurance in President Franklin Roosevelt’s original proposal for Social Security; it was dropped from the final act from fear that it would jeopardize the rest of the program.

Read more

Breadwinner Feminism

By Christine Riddiough

Meet Mrs. Jones, my neighbor up the block. She's 75 and lives with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Then there's my friend Ellen who's a single mother. Her son is an adult now, but while he was growing up she had to juggle several jobs and childcare. And there's my wife and I – we've been together for 30 years – and married for almost one year.

Read more

The Continuing Struggle for Immigration Reform


By Duane Campbell

During the last year there was substantive unity between immigrants’ rights groups, community groups, religious groups, and major parts of organized labor in the effort to craft a comprehensive immigration reform bill.  Now, with the amendments and passage of Senate bill SB744 at the end of June, this unity is challenged.   The draft of SB744 by the Gang of Eight was always a compromise. There is, for example, a redesigned guest worker program, a new special status for H-1B hi-tech workers, enhanced border enforcement, an extended period of time required for application for legal status, and more.

Conservative Republican forces in the Senate amended the bill to achieve a massive   $46 billion expansion of border control and enforcement.  The National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, a network of grassroots community groups of which DSA is a member, sharply criticized these  developments. The Dignity Campaign and Presente (a new on-line group that claims to speak for the Latino community) has called the bill unacceptable, while the big Washington D.C. lobbying groups such as the National Council de La Raza continue to support the bill.   

Read more

Class Struggle from the Couch

By Jon Hochschartner


On Sept. 17, Grand Theft Auto V, the latest installment in the wildly popular video game franchise, will be released for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, perhaps as one of the final major games for the current console generation.

Older readers may not be aware, but video games have developed quite a bit since the Pac-Man booths of yore. Games increasingly include sophisticated plots, top-of-the-line voice acting, and graphics that could be mistaken on first glance for live-action film. I have little doubt their quality will increase exponentially in years to come and they will represent one of the most important media of the 21st century. Back in 2011, The Economist reported the video-gaming industry was already three-fifths the size of the movie industry. For that reason alone, games deserve serious critical attention.

Read more

Low-wage Workers Rise for Pay Equity, Justice on the Job

By Alicia Newton

Low-paid workers are fighting back.

The day before Thanksgiving 2012 in Atlanta, I joined the nationwide Black Friday protest against Walmart. 

The largest corporate employer and retailer in the nation, Walmart has aggressively resisted organizing efforts for decades.  While Craig Jelinek, CEO and president of Costco, came out in support of raising the minimum wage, Walmart is mum.  Despite its $15 billion in annual profits, the mega-retailer bemoans recent sales numbers that are lower than expectations. 

Read more

The Chicago Workers’ Collaborative: A New Organizing Model

By Bill Barclay

“Low wage labor is a subsidy to inefficient capital,” said the Labour Organization economist in Norway to me in 2010, “and that is why we fight against the creation of a low wage sector.” But what do we do in a country, like the U.S., that already has a huge low wage sector? And where eight of the 10 fastest growing occupations require only a high school education – or less? Established unions have made little progress in organizing these workers. But there are new organizing models that offer hope for the future.

Read more
← Previous  1  2    74  75  76  77  78  79  80  81  82    91  92  Next →