The Audacity of Timidity: Where Is The Challenge To Market Fundamentalism?

In the midst of the 2008 presidential election campaign, I looked at  then-Sen. Barack Obama’s economic views and whether he would challenge Market Fundamentalism. Millions of workers needed a president who would re-imagine and restructure the power relationships in our economy, the role of the market and, most important, forge a path to reclaim economic fairness and economic justice that has eluded the average American for several generations. He turned out to be a president consistent with his previous economic views. Here is the full document (PDF).

Playboy Interview with Paul Krugman:

How can winning a Nobel Prize in economics seem like it’s no big deal? Well, if you’ve already won the John Bates Clark Medal—an honor bestowed biennially on the American economist under 40 who has made major contributions to his profession—you’ve already taken home a piece of hardware considered by many economists to be slightly harder to win than a Nobel. Only 12 people have won both, including Paul Krugman, who collected the 1991 Clark and then snagged the Nobel (and its $1.4 million check) in 2008 (read the full interview here).

Playboy Interview with Bernie Sanders:

At a time when politicians—particularly members of Congress—are almost universally reviled and blind partisanship seems to dictate the fate of every piece of legislation, one U.S. senator stands out as a unique voice.

Bernie Sanders has been a senator from Vermont since 2006. It’s hard for him to be caught up in partisanship: He’s one of only two U.S. senators who identify as independent. Although he caucuses with the Democrats, Sanders refuses to run as one and regularly chides them for abandoning the working class. He has never been much of a party man. When he was first elected to the House of Representatives, in 1990, he refused any party affiliation, making him the longest-serving independent member of Congress in American history (read the full interview here)

The Edifice Complex–Rebuilding the American labor movement to face the global economy:

This book, published by Labor Research Association, looked at the crisis of labor, using the metaphors of labor’s buildings as symbols of an Edifice Complex. As I wrote then, “These structures have ensnared us in a political culture that chokes off our lifeblood and is alienating unions from their members and potential new recruits. The buildings also represent a division of fiefs that no longer makes sense in the global economy of today. Indeed, their very existence is giving comfort and sustenance to a political system dedicated to eradicating the labor movement. And, finally, from a very practical perspective, these monuments are worth multi-millions, perhaps a billion dollars of resources that lie fallow at a time when more money is needed to organize new members. For labor to survive into the 21st Century, we must sell off these buildings and return to the heartland, to the cities and small communities in which the desperation, frustration and pain of millions of working people grow every day.”

Lost in the Margins: Labor and the Media:

In 1990, my study found that the lives of 100 million working people—those who make the US economy and society run—were being routinely ignored, marginalized or inaccurately portrayed in the media. Although reporting about working people and organized labor had declined since the early 1960s, the last 10 years saw an accelerated drop–and nothing has improved since 1990.

Media Appearances:

I have done numerous media appearances representing the views of  labor, workers and a progressive economic agenda. From 2015-2016, I appeared regularly on CNN as a national surrogate for Bernie Sanders. Here is a sampling:

CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo Agrees: Single Payer Makes Sense

“Big Labor” or Wall Street: Who Hurt The American Economy?

The Corporate Piggy Bank=The U.S. Treasury and YOUR Money (W Video)

Cognitive Dissonance and Unions

Bush Hack Can Only Try To Insult Me

US labor movement’s fight for survival (PressTV)

Jonathan Tasini on Why Barack Obama Will Win (In October 2012, I appeared on a panel sponsored by the Australian Institute of International Affairs to analyze the looming U.S. presidential election)


This is a list of some more recent columns I wrote for various publications. If you are looking for my Working Life page and blog posts, you can find them here.

Common Cause (Australian Chemical, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union; February-March 2015): Devastated families recall horror of Disaster that killed 28 US coal miners in 2010

The Australian: US Desperate To Avoid Home Truths (3-27-2012)

Sydney Morning Herald: Economic Epidemic: Avoid American disease-like plague (4-22-2012)

The Australian: Business chiefs should not run countries (8-21-2012)

Equal Times: Obama’s victory, Romney’s loss and union lessons (11-08-2012)

Equal Times: Why President Obama will win the US elections (11-05-2012)

Equal Times: The Quality of Jobs (10-08-2012)

Equal Times: The Lost Decade of Wages (09-24-2012)

Playboy: A Fake Crisis: Why We Shouldn’t Obsess Over Our Budget Deficit (March 2012)


(note: the archive for the columns is currently unavailable)

The Wal-Mart 22 (11-07-05)
Diagnosis For America (10-25-05)
Gross Domestic Politics (10-07-05)
The Chazer Caucus (08-31-05)
The Birthday Bush Wants To Ignore (08-11-05)
Spanking The CAFTA 15 (07-29-05)
Workers of the Real World (07-20-05)
The Productivity Problem (07-14-05)
The Best Corporate Health Plan (06-30-05)
The Disappearing Pension (05-31-05)
Wal-Mart’s Free Market Fallacy (04-21-05)
Wal-Mart’s Culture of Crime and Greed (03-30-05)
Labor Pains: Eight Simple Rules (02-28-05)
Labor’s Lost Love (02-20-05)
Wal-Mart’s Sweetheart Deal (02-16-05)
Show Us The Jobs (02-01-05)
Of Trade, Quotas and Fairness (12-22-04)
Health Care: The Real Crisis (12-03-04)
Airline Workers: Up in the Air and Losing Ground (11-18-04)
Prepping For Debate (10-12-04)
It’s Not Easy Being Green (9-23-04)
Trading His Way To Victory (9-7-04)
Retirement in Peril (8-12-04)
Labor Pays Its Dues (7-23-04)
A Different Kind of Kerrey (6-30-04)
Labor’s Democrat Problem (6-14-04)
Abandoning the Clinton Legacy (6-4-04)
A Cronkite Moment? (5-7-04)
Trading Authority (4-27-04)
The Wal-Mart Myth (4-12-04)
Back to Basics (3-15-04)
Taking the Low Road (3-4-04)
Injustice For All (2-20-04)
Sales Pitch (1-20-04)
No Free Ride (1-12-04)
A Home Run (12-19-03)
Unions In The Cards (12-5-03)
Who’s the Boss
Workers’ Party (11-18-03)
Trade Off (11-17-03)
Grossly Distorted Picture
Up Against the Wal-Mart (10-22-03)
Busted (10-10-03)
What’s Wealth (10-01-03)
Jobs Without Power (8-28-03)