Author: Lois Weiner

LOIS WEINER, a member of the  New Politics editorial board, writes widely about education, labor, and politics, specializing in teacher unionism. She is currently researching the challenges for teachers unions in the political and economic terrain since 2016.

 

On behalf of the New Politics editorial board

NP on Cuba: Consistent Opposition to US Imperialism and Support of Democratic Rights

We welcome the opportunity to clarify misrepresentations of New Politics editorial stance about Cuba and US imperialism.

Going into Labor

Going into Labor

Expecting working people to do the jobs for which they are paid and also help organize their workplaces is a huge ask. One invaluable asset we have is seeing the inseparability of struggles for social justice and workplace democracy.

Learning from Industrialization’s Mixed Legacy

Notes on Class Struggle Unionism under Biden

In my remarks I look back at the tradition of the Third Camp, articulated in publications of and about the Workers Party and Independent Socialist League, as well as my involvement in Berkeley with the Independent Socialist Club and the International Socialists.

Heads up! Chins down! Resisting the New Bipartisan Neoliberal Project in Education

Teachers’ work is being transformed beneath our collective nose. We have missed an opportunity to combat the project in its earliest stages but we cannot delay in understanding and combating the new iteration of neoliberalism’s global project in education.

Union Democracy is Our Goal But Is It Practical? Responding to Nelson Lichtenstein

Nelson Lichtenstein and I agree on two major ideas that I think distinguish our shared viewpoint from the practice of many union officials and some of their supporters on the left.

Unions, Democracy, and the Third Camp

Comparing Lessons from New Politics and Herman Benson

An analysis of debates among labor leftists about how a commitment to socialism “from below” should inform union activity.

Biden’s pick for Secretary of Education: What to expect from Cardona?

We should let Miguel Cardona know we have his back if he defends what schools, teachers, students really need – while we simultaneously prepare for his not doing so.

Teachers unions and the pandemic: Fighting for life and facing neoliberalism’s new bipartisan push

Biden will endorse the old normal Obama handed to Trump, but he will also push profiteering and control of education through technology, a project supported by both Democrats and the GOP from the start of Trump’s administration.

Say #ByeBetsy – and organize now to fight against Biden’s education policies

Biden’s victory now requires confronting his advocacy of disastrous education policies during the Obama administration, enacted under Obama’s Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan.

Fighting for teachers unions that speak back to power, defend students and social justice

School reopenings have become a point of political conflict on a national level, as parent, student, and teachers’ rights to have healthy, safe, equitable schools have been subordinated to the bipartisan consensus to put the economy and profit over human need.

Firing Up the House of Labor to Fight for Racial Justice: Confronting Hard Truths

Defending truths about union democracy and the inseparability of racial and economic justice in our society has shown to be extraordinarily demanding work, yet it is an unavoidable goal if the organized power of the working class is to (help) free the human race.

Building an Alternative to the Democratic Party

Bernie Sanders has ended his candidacy
When we feel our lives are in danger as they are in this pandemic, it can be very hard to look critically at national politics, by which I mean the end of Bernie’s candidacy and . . .

Read more ›

Philly Educators Have a Chance to Make History

Members of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) have a chance to improve lives of Philly school educators and students, challenging control of schools by corporate elites, as did Chicago teachers when they elected a new generation of leaders from . . .

Read more ›

Writing an Obituary for Neocons

The New York Times obituary of neocon historian Gertrude Himmelfarb shows why  neoconservatives remain a potent political force in U.S. politics: many liberals can’t imagine a socialist challenge to capitalism that doesn’t apologize for authoritarianism.
The NYT’s sentimental gloss of Himmelfarb’s . . .

Read more ›

Parents’ huge stake in the Chicago Teachers Union strike

A harsh reality of teachers’ strikes is that they hit parents – moms especially, who still do most of the work of caring for kids and housework – the hardest. Parents are left frantically searching for childcare options, especially if . . .

Read more ›

Education Workers in Chicago Are Challenging the U.S. Ruling Class

Though the media is casting the strike of education workers in the Chicago Public Schools as (just) another episode in the wave of teachers’ strikes, and the press in Chicago is doing its best to defeat the union, this contract . . .

Read more ›

review

Learning from the “Red State” Walkouts

Red State Revolt is based on Eric Blanc’s “on the ground” reporting for Jacobin on the 2018 walkouts of education workers in Oklahoma, West Virginia, and Arizona. He aims to tell the stories of the walkouts . . .

Read more ›

What LA Teachers Have Already Won

ImageThe United Teachers of Los Angeles (UTLA), the city’s teachers union, has now reentered negotiations with a school board chastened by a strike that has shown the movement’s political power in massive demonstrations with community members and parents.

Why the LA Teachers Strike Matters

Image

The January 14 strike date announced by the United Teachers of Los Angeles (UTLA) has heightened tensions in an already contentious dispute with Los Angeles Superintendent Austin Beutner, who represents the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) in negotiations. However, far more is at stake in Los Angeles and for the rest of us than a traditional contract struggle.

Liberal fear about teaching a "people's history": Sam Wineburg on Howard Zinn

Image

The Zinn Education Project has published a fine response to an article based on Sam Wineburg’s book, “Howard Zinn’s Anti-Textbook.”

Walkouts Teach U.S. Labor a New Grammar for Struggle

Image

Like the Arab Spring, the U.S. “Education Spring” was an explosive wave of protests. Statewide teacher walkouts seemed to arise out of nowhere, organized through Facebook groups, with demands for increased school funding and political voice for teachers. Though the walkouts confounded national media outlets, which had little idea how to explain or report on the movements, for parent and teacher activists who have been organizing against reforms in public education over the past four decades, the protests were understandable, if unexpected. What was surprising was their breadth of support (statewide), their organizing strategy (Facebook), and their breathtakingly rapid spread.

Top