CHICAGO — “We’re here to demand our rights,” said Manuella Rivera in a gentle but firm voice, “and we’ll stay until we get justice.” Rivera, a 58-year-old window assembler, is among 250 courageous workers at Republic Windows and Doors who have occupied the plant since Dec. 5 when it was shut down after the company’s main financer, Bank of America, refused to extend a line of credit.
A raging debate is under way across the country, in Congress and between the incoming Obama and outgoing Bush administrations on the fate of the auto industry. General Motors, Ford and Chrysler CEOs have faced tough questioning in Congress. GM is begging for $25 billion to keep it and its ailing Detroit counterparts going. But nobody seems too thrilled about the prospect.
GALVESTON, Texas — After Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, many speculated that if a similar disaster hit Texas, the Bush administration would respond more positively. Over two months after Hurricane Ike struck, the evidence suggests otherwise.
OAKLAND, Calif. — For a moment last weekend the leaves of the calendar flipped backward, as Latham Square in the center of downtown became again the site of that great post-World War II demonstration of labor solidarity, the Oakland General Strike of 1946.