Union-free America?

More evidence of the rightward drift of American public opinion on economic issues apparent in distrust of unions from Pew Research Center: Favorable views of labor unions have plummeted since 2007, amid growing public skepticism about unions’ purpose and power. Currently, 41% say they have a favorable opinion of labor unions while about as many […]

The past and future of enterprise bargaining

Industrial relations reform was one of the great dramas of the 1983-96 Labor government. Labor started as a strong defender of centralized wage fixation and ended a champion of decentralized enterprise bargaining backed up only vague commitment to overall wage targets. By 1996 it was the Reserve bank which overshadowed wage-fixation with its commitment to […]

Fair Work and Employee Free Choice: liberalism vs. social democracy

The demise of the Employee Free Choice Act and the woes of American health reform shed light on the distinction  between social liberalism and social democracy as forms of left-wing politics. This has been raised by David Brody in his address at the recent Labour History conference where he contrasted the success of the Rudd […]