Solidarity for Sale:
How Corruption Destroyed the Labor Movement and Undermined America's Promise
Reading ? Q&A ? Signing
The recent New York City transit strike and this fall's breakup of the AFL-CIO into warring factions mean that the time is ripe for change in the American labor movement. While the goals of unions ? better working conditions and benefits for even the lowest workers, job security and protection for members ? are admirable, the actions of the unions and the officials that run them have been less than saintly since the start of the labor movement over a century ago. From "Big Jim" Colosimo, the patron saint of Chicago's Mafia, to Brooklyn's Sammy "The Bull" Gravano, corruption and organized crime have plagued unions and controlled their actions since their inception?a dangerous and sordid situation that still exists today. But until now, no "muckraking" journalist has been willing to expose the reality of this corruption.
Impassioned, revelatory, prodigiously researched and reported, and thoroughly convincing, Solidarity for Sale shows how the American labor system's decent ends are continually undermined by its tawdry means?a diet of daily corruption longer than the menu at a Long Island diner. By telling the untold histories, uncovering the untold scandals, and showing how the labor movement could change its evil ways in days to come, journalist and union member Robert Fitch both builds a devastating indictment of America's unions and goes beyond it to show that union corruption, stagnation and decline do not have tobe America's destiny.
Robert Fitch joined the Laborer's Union, Local 5, in Chicago Heights, Illinois, when he was fifteen years old. Fitch eventually traded his shovel for a briefcase, and has since taught at Cornell and New York University, organized for the unions, and written for the Village Voice, The Baffler, Newsday, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times and The Nation. Still a union member, he lives in New York City.
Added by strudeau on February 17, 2006