David Macaray

David Macaray

David Macaray, a former union rep, is a Los Angeles-based playwright and author - “It’s Never Been Easy: Essays on Modern Labor” and his new “Night Shift:  270 Factory Stories.” He can be reached at Dmacaray@gmail.com

Articles by this author

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012
What’s an American Worker’s Life Worth? About $5,900
Acknowledging the alarming polarization and gridlock of Congress, and the startling, rightward shift of the political spectrum, you regularly hear people declare that there is no way we could get something as ambitious as OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act) passed today, not in this dreadful climate.
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Friday, May 04, 2012
There Is a Plague Loose Upon the Land
Most states in the union have laws against “gouging.” Broadly speaking, gouging is defined as the practice of arbitrarily raising prices on necessary goods, such as milk, bottled water, baby food, baby formula, bread, etc., in response to civil emergencies (riots, martial law) or natural disasters (earthquakes, floods, tornadoes).
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Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Union Activists Are Being Murdered
Make no mistake. We had some ugly anti-labor mischief of our own during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, where union organizers, political radicals, suspected anarchists and Bolsheviks were blackballed, beaten, imprisoned, deported, murdered, and state-executed—all in the name of “law and order.” But while many of these men (and women, too….they deported Emma Goldman to Russia) were clearly railroaded, at least the high-profile figures were given the semblance of a jury trial.
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Friday, April 13, 2012
The Campaign to Privatize the World
One of the biggest con games going on at the moment is the sustained attack on the U.S.
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Monday, March 26, 2012
Three Ways Labor Can Fight Back
There’s no denying that slogans are gold. In the world of commerce, a catchy, cleverly written slogan, no matter how illogical or misleading, has an excellent chance of attracting customers. Take Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign from some years ago. That slogan was a huge hit, despite no one actually knowing what the phrase meant, or what, precisely, it had to do with Nike products.
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Friday, March 16, 2012
Does Labor Have Any Real Friends?
Despite well-meaning attempts at mitigating or sugar-coating it, organized labor has always known, deep-down, that the only true friend it had was labor itself. Yes, the Democrats have thrown a few crumbs its way, and yes, academics have eloquently given voice to the Movement, and yes, non-union workers have grudgingly recognized organized labor’s historical contributions. But when it comes to the down-and-dirty battles, working people realize that no one can be relied upon except other working people.
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Friday, March 09, 2012
Rush Limbaugh Is No Joke
It’s disappointing to hear people (liberals, progressives, Democrats) dismiss Rush Limbaugh as simply a “clown,” or a “blowhard,” or “an idiot,” or, more thoughtfully, as “a political entertainer and not a political pundit,” as if his 14-15 million reported regular listeners didn’t count for anything—as if they didn’t vote or make political contributions. Let’s not kid ourselves. Limbaugh’s audience doesn’t regard him as a joke. They regard him as a modern day prophet.<img alt="" bord
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Tuesday, February 28, 2012
The Dreadful Candy Caper: Hershey's Outrageous Labor Violations
What happened recently at the Hershey candy factory, in Palmyra, Pennsylvania, has to be considered one of the weirdest and most outrageous labor stories of the new year.
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Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Two Negative Perceptions of Labor
Included in a front-page Los Angeles Times feature article (February 21, 2012) on AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka was this sobering observation: According to a 2011 Pew poll, only 45-percent of Americans viewed labor unions “favorably.”
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Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Lockouts: The Empire Strikes Back
If you’re looking for evidence of just how confident, militant, and insufferably arrogant companies have become in recent years, look no further than the phenomenon of the lockout. A lockout is where a company closes its doors, refusing to allow its union employees to return to work until they accede to company demands—demands that typically call for staggering cuts in wages and benefits.
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