[Marxism] The future of progressive leadership in America?

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Mar 3 10:18:54 MST 2005


A Tale of Two Leadership Styles
By Arianna Huffington, AlterNet. Posted March 2, 2005.

I have seen the future of progressive leadership in America, and its name 
is Andy Stern.

After seeing the young Bruce Springsteen in concert, rock critic Jon Landau 
famously wrote: "I have seen the future of rock and roll, and its name is 
Bruce Springsteen."

Well, I've just had a Springsteen moment. After spending some time last 
week with Andy Stern, the groundbreaking president of the Service Employees 
International Union, I'm ready to declare: I have seen the future of 
progressive leadership in America, and its name is Andy Stern.

You'll forgive me if I temporarily trade my critic's platform for a 
cheerleader's megaphone, but I've spent the better part of my adult life 
obsessing over the dwarfish nature of modern political leadership. (I even 
wrote an entire book about it in my mid-20s, and watched while it was 
rejected by 36 publishers before it finally saw the light of day.) So when 
I see the real deal, I react like a starving woman being escorted to an 
all-you-can-eat buffet.

full: http://www.alternet.org/story/21393/

===

Detroit Business News, Saturday, October 23, 2004
Service workers union tops list of donors to GOP governors
By Leigh Strope / AP Labor Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) -- One of the largest and most liberal labor unions in the 
country is the biggest contributor to the Republican Governors Association 
for the coming election, even topping heavyweight GOP donors such as the 
National Rifle Association.

The Service Employees International Union, with 1.6 million members, has 
given $575,000 to the GOP group that is working to elect Republican 
governors in 11 states Nov.2.

The union ranks first on a list of donors that also includes Pfizer Inc., 
Citigroup and the American Gas Association, according to Political Money 
Line, a nonpartisan campaign finance tracking service. The NRA was 13th, 
giving $298,772.

full: http://www.detnews.com/2004/business/0410/24/business-312754.htm

===

Robert Novak, Inside Politics
The rise of Hoffa
CNN, Monday, January 24, 2005 Posted: 4:49 PM EST (2149 GMT)

WASHINGTON (Creators Syndicate) -- The barons of the American labor 
movement gathered January 10 at the AFL-CIO fortress across Lafayette Park 
from the White House, with doors closed to the public as usual. The AFL-CIO 
Executive Committee's agenda prepared by President John Sweeney allotted 30 
minutes for reform of the labor federation. But James P. Hoffa of the 
Teamsters insisted much more time was needed to debate badly needed changes.

As Hoffa desired, more than two hours were spent on proposals by him and 
Andrew Stern of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). They 
would diminish the influence of the AFL-CIO, returning power to individual 
unions. Hoffa would cut in half money the unions give to Sweeney, 
suggesting that his presidency has failed in the basic task of signing up 
new workers.

(clip)

However, Hoffa has little interest in who runs the AFL-CIO. He wants to 
march to his own drummer, and that means he is not wholly committed to the 
Democrats. The Teamsters were an early supporter of Mel Martinez's 
successful run for the Senate in Florida, one of five Republican Senate 
candidates backed by Hoffa. But Hoffa's primary concern is organized 
labor's declining share of American workers.

The rise of Hoffa represents a stunning reversal of power within the labor 
movement over less than a decade. Hoffa was narrowly defeated for Teamsters 
president by Ron Carey in a 1996 election that was voided by a federal 
special adjudicator for fund-raising abuses. Much of the union 
establishment, including Trumka and Stern, was implicated in the Carey 
scam. Now Hoffa is a power who threatens to shatter the comfortable life at 
AFL-CIO headquarters.

full: http://www.cnn.com/2005/ALLPOLITICS/01/24/novak.hoffa/


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