5/22 UAW Falls Short In Alabama w/ Sarah Jaffe

May 22, 2024

It’s Hump Day! Sam speaks with Sarah Jaffe, fellow at the Type Media Center  based in New Orleans, to discuss her recent piece for In These Times entitled “In Tough Loss, the High-Profile UAW Campaign at Mercedes-Benz in Alabama Falls Short.” Then, Sam checks in on some news stories he’s been interested in! First, he runs through updates on the trickling of recognition for a Palestinian state from European nations, Biden’s all-out assault on the International Rules-Based Order as he and the GOP begin work on sanctioning The Hague, yesterday’s major primaries, the US economy, abortion politics, student loans, the occupation of Haiti, and unionization, before parsing through Trump’s continuing double-talk about abortion regulation, and Biden’s horrid choice to go after the ICC. Sarah Jaffe then walks Sam through the numbers coming out of the failed unionization vote at Mercedes’ Alabama plant, before painting a picture of Mercedes’ standard union-busting effort, and the role of the South’s anti-union culture in keeping the organizers just a few hundred votes short. Expanding on this, Jaffe touches on the ongoing national union renaissance, and how it has (however minimally) impacted the South, before stepping back to assess where the organizing effort failed – namely in failing to inoculate the workforce to the myths union-busters rely on – and the plant-specific factors that prohibited a greater organizing effort. After they wrap up the interview by looking at the major lessons to take from this loss, Sam dives deep into the sentencing of Charles Littlejohn, and how the state’s protection of the wealth of the Uber-elite has defined the US’ economic failure coming out of the Great Compression.

And in the Fun half: John from San Antonio about progressives’ tough losses in California and Oregon, the central role AIPAC and other Israel-affiliated PACs played in bolstering conservative challengers, and how to move forward in the push for progressive victories. Brandon from the Ozark discusses White Rural Rage, Jesse Watters and Janine Pirro discuss the horrors of undercover police raids (when they’re on Donald Trump), and Sam parses through the Chief Actuary of Social Security’s recent report on the myths about Social Security (it’s riveting). Kyle from Brooklyn explores Germany’s new supply chain law, Joe from Connecticut tackles the role of religion in Israel’s apartheid state, and Charlie Kirk predicts plan–demic II, plus, your calls and IMs!

Follow Sarah on Twitter here: https://x.com/sarahljaffe

Check out Sarah’s piece in In These Times here: https://inthesetimes.com/article/uaw-mercedes-benz-alabama-volkswagen-uaw-union

Check out the Social Security Actuarial Status report (and specifically slide #15 on for the myth debunking section!): https://www.ssa.gov/oact/presentations/scgoss_20240515.pdf

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