Krystal Ball: “Labor’s fight is our fight” (VIDEO)

Watch as MSNBC contributor Krystal Ball explains the possible implications of having fewer and fewer union members across America.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

There’s really something to be said for the fact that union membership is at an 8-decades low while the disparity between the wealthiest Americans and everyone else has never been wider.


Related Articles

15 thoughts on “Krystal Ball: “Labor’s fight is our fight” (VIDEO)

  1. Thanks Zach.

    They’re the only counterweight to the 1%. The road back to prosperity for the middle class goes through “collective bargaining.” I try to avoid buying anything that I’m not 100% sure is union made.

  2. A tenet of the Catholic Church, first proclaimed in the Encyclical “Rerum Novarum,” is that workers have a moral right to form, join, and be represented by unions. It was the Church’s effort over 100 years ago to address the inequities and inhumanity of serfdom at that time positing that capital and labor should be a collaborative, sharing, and equal effort in a business or service venture.

    It must be recognized that in the past times of slavery and serfdom, capital saw and treated workers as human chattel without any basic rights or rewards.

    Unfortunately, the Church through its American bishops has been mostly silent on the growth of a 21st century version of serfdom by the greedy and their paid legislative agents, such as Walker in Wisconsin. That our elected representatives’ attempt to eliminate or restrict unions is blatant and a fact. Also, it seems to me the American Catholic bishops are all consumed currently with the “unborn.” They ignore the plight of the born, or workers, who are being used and abused in lowering of wages and benefits with increasing frequency by capital, enabled and empowered by Republican legislators at the state level and their governors.

    If workers do not have an economic life, or as it has been called,” a living wage,” they and their family’s life is severely depressed or diminished, both spiritually and materially, in pursuit of the American dream.

    As a Catholic and part of capital in my former working days when union workers were very much partners in capitalism, I call for an awakening of my bishop’s and capital’s conscience at the injustice and unfairness of a 21st century form of serfdom. It is real, it is growing, it is immoral.

    1. D12, thank you. For anyone interested, here’s a link to Pope Leo XIII’ Encyclical: Reram Novarum (1891)

      Capitalism is the Laws of Supply and DEMAND. Prices are set by the intersection (equilibrium point) of the Supply curve (for any good or service) and the DEMAND curve for that good or service. When the 1% own 40% of the net value of the U.S. DEMAND goes SLACK. The wealthy “save.” The poor and the middle class have to SPEND to survive. It’s that “spending” which drives DEMAND, without which economic markets collapse.

  3. I bought all of Reagan’s “trickle-down,” shtick. Wish I had known then what I know now. We’ve been lowering the MARGINAL tax rates on the 1% since the Eisenhower administrations.

    Top Marginal Tax rates 1916 – 2011

    NOTHING ever “trickled down.” They just used those tax breaks to buy both parties and the media.

    Warren Buffett: “Actually, there’s been class warfare going on for the last 20 years, and my class has won. We’re the ones that have gotten our tax rates reduced dramatically.”

    Billionaire Nick Hanauer: “Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators”

    “……When businesspeople take credit for creating jobs, it is like squirrels taking credit for creating evolution. In fact, it’s the other way around.
    It is unquestionably true that without entrepreneurs and investors, you can’t have a dynamic and growing capitalist economy. But it’s equally true that without consumers, you can’t have entrepreneurs and investors. And the more we have happy customers with lots of disposable income, the better our businesses will do.
    That’s why our current policies are so upside down. When the American middle class defends a tax system in which the lion’s share of benefits accrues to the richest, all in the name of job creation, all that happens is that the rich get richer.
    And that’s what has been happening in the U.S. for the last 30 years. ….”

    1. Thomas Jefferson talked about “freedom from monopolies,” as something that should have been included in the “Bill of Rights.”

      Just like Adam Smith, the founder of capitalism, Jefferson understood that monopolies and oligopolies are the enemies of FREE MARKETS. When size/scale really matters, an industry has to be heavily REGULATED to keep those at the top from pillaging the taxpayers.

      See Exhibit A, Gale Kappa at We Energies, who has sold Wisconsin’s energy independence to the fossil fuel oligopolies. Below is a youtube from Hilarides Dairy (CA) where they sell natural gas (bio methane from cow manure) back to their power company, the rest they use to run their fleet of trucks on CNG compressed natural gas.

      Methane and natural gas are both CH4.

      Even if you leave out evidence that fracking natural gas out of the ground causes earthquakes “Unusual Dallas earthquake linked to tracking….” and pollutes ground water “EPA Changed Course On Texas Fracking Danger After Oil Company Protest”
      I would be shocked if the bio methane ROI is not significantly higher.

      After the 41-second mark of the Hilarides Dairy youtube, a metered CNG pump appears. The pump’s probably very close to what the City of Milwaukee uses. “Milwaukee to start selling compressed natural gas.”!page=1&pageSize=10&sort=newestfirst

      Although I like the decentralized concept in the youtube below, “Methane Biodigester How To,” it fails to adequately explain to homeowners the dangers of working with methane, as well as the refining process.

      It doesn’t matter whether you frack natural gas out of the ground or use a methane digester to separate it from waste, you still have to refine it. From cow manure, that means taking out the water vapor, the carbon dioxide and the hydrogen sulfide (smelly part) and getting it at or above 95% CH4.

      Bio-methane is not carbon negative, but where cow manure is concerned it’s infinitely better to burn it and release carbon than to let the methane escape directly into the atmosphere. Methane is a much more lethal green house gas than carbon.

      But, in his corner Mr. Kappa has folks like Mike Grebe, who runs the 1/2 a billion dollar Bradley Foundation and supports the fossil fuel oligopoly. Here’s what one of Mr. Grebe’s experts,” John Dunn, said just last year: “Warm is good for people, and it’s particularly good for people as they get older,” said Dunn. “The people that warm spells kill are already moribund.”‏

      1. “Billy the Kid,” was actually a bit-player in what’s called the “Lincoln County War.” It started out as a non-violent attempt to break up the Murphy/Dolan/Santa Fe ring monopoly, the old-fashioned way, with competition and was led by John Chasm. Hollywood hagiography showed how much they respected Chisum by casting John Wayne to play him in 1971.

        After the 1:44 mark of this three-minute youtube for “Chisum,” Wayne mentions the “Governor.”

        In order to keep fleecing consumers, monopolies/oligopolies need protection from the government. That’s exactly what was happening in Lincoln County. The Murphy/Dolan gang in Lincoln County was “kicking-back” to the Santa Fe Ring led by the Governor. When Chisum’s forces started “winning,” the Governor called in troops from Fort Stanton to bail out the Murphy/Dolan gang.

        SSDD, in 1999 Wall Street bribed federal legislators to repeal safeguards such as Glass Steagall (The Banking Act of 1933) which HAD prevented bankers from placing bets with depositors money, which was guaranteed by the taxpayers (up to $100,000). Newt Gingrich and Bill Clinton told us these would create jobs and wealth for all Americans. Russ Feingold was one of the few Senators to vote against all this crap. It only took nine-years for Wall Street to crash the economy and STILL no one has been indicted.

        PBS Frontline’s “The Untouchables” just aired and it’s been widely praised for pointing out who corrupt the US Department of Justice under Bush and Obama has been.

    2. JC, there is one valid “trickle-down” effect, also known as a symptom of BPH. In this context it is a good term to explain the real consequence of cutting taxes for the rich.

  4. The top 1% took over the major private industry unions years ago. That’s why A.L.E.C. has worked with Walker and other Red State politicians to cripple the Public Unions, the last real bastion of worker’s right. Unions won’t disappear because they are needed for reliable production. But they must find a non-violent way to gain worker trust, and offer management and stock holders reasons to meet sensibly negotiated needs. Obama’s biggest problem is fighting the idolized notion in this country of unbridled capitalism. Unions simply haven’t made their case to the American people and this is likely because Union leadership is controlled by global hungry financial interests.

    1. “Unions won’t disappear because they are needed for reliable production.”

      Someone forgot to tell Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Hewlett-Packard and the rest of the criminal defense contractors: “Chinese counterfeit parts found in U.S. weapons”

      IMHO, unions haven’t “made their case,” because the elites control the media. “Has Google Destroyed the 4th Estate?”

      IMHO, both parties have to get back into government investment into projects with high “multipliers.” As opposed to most investments in weapon systems, investment in infrastructure has a huge multiplier. See Eisenhower’s investment in US Interstate highways. Today imho that’s bandwidth for distance learning.

      Food stamps and unemployment have very high “multiplier” effects. It keeps the unemployed making the car/rent/mortgage payments. When you cut things like food stamps and unemployment you cripple small business, property management companies, auto repair and force people to move in with relatives to survive. It decreases the mobility of the workforce, the ability to transition. People are MORE likely to take the risks inherent to innovation if there’s a “safety net.” IMHO it’s that innovation which drives capitalism.

      Sen, Mike Crapo (R-ID) is backing a group in his state that’s proposed “Solar Roadways.” Among a host of other advantages, unlike concrete and asphalt, over time, the solar panels pay for themselves.

      We need “working prototypes,” to evaluate the technology, but imho, it’s very promising.

    2. The 1% never took over the unions, the 1% bought legislators to pass rules to destroy the existing unions and to open free trade agreements devaluing US labor (Bill Clinton on through today). Your first sentence is total BS, CK.

      Implying that unions need to be non-violent to ‘gain,’ worker trust is more BS. That statement implies that teacher or other public and private sector workers never trusted unions to which they belonged.

      And more BS is Obama’s biggest problem as you state it. Obomba’s problem is that he claims to be a Democratic POTUS while he has willfully and deliberately championed American exceptionalism, rampant imperialism, stifling of the citizen rights, torture and murder and a has promoted unbridled economic enabling of everything the 1% indicated as necessary for him to do. Obomba is so far the smiling servant of unbridled capitalism. Geithner brags about tending to the interests of the one percent as he steps back into that world and Obomba’s new pick is from the same mold as Geithner.

      Kindly stick to blog whoring about your affiliation with Move to Amend.

  5. You’re very knowledgeable, John Casper, but you preaching to the choir, as most progressives are prone to do. As The Arnold is found of saying, “I’m owout dere.” Progressives need to get with the public. Quit fighting religion and populism and become popular!

    1. You don’t seem to be able to say much that is worth reading CK. John Casper is knowledgeable, I agree with something you have uttered for the first time. Your indiscriminate application of terms like progressives, without defining your view what a progressive is invalidates most of what you say in a slightly different way than failing to understand to the core of so many issues.

      This is illustrated again with the ignorance demonstrated in your last sentence, here. Nobody I know, from whatever even slightly, ‘left,’ leaning perspective is fighting religion or populism. I see people all over the ‘left,’ leaning political spectrum fighting the hypocritical notions engendered by religious authority. Example to illustrate my point is, we are all made in the image and likeness of god, except for the LGBT crowd or claiming to be pro-life, while being pro-war on women and pro military oppression of peoples around the world who happen to be people other than white and well to do financially.

  6. I know nothing about you, nonquixote, except you’re name, which seems to indicate a faithlessness, devoid of emotional idealism, exemplified by your total lack of understanding why the middle class, suffering as they have, continue to reject the kind of bellicose notions you provoke. Most now disdain the idea of being in a union. I made a living for my family working in the media because I understood what people respond to. And believe me, the crap you spew ain’t it.

Comments are closed.