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"They're Bankrupting Us!": And 20 Other Myths about Unions Paperback – August 28, 2012
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“As someone who has written about the daily lives and struggles of working people I am constantly impressed and enlightened by Bill Fletcher's work. In “They’re Bankrupting Us!” he answers the question of why unions are so essential—not just for economic uplift, but for democracy itself. Fletcher is one of our leading labor intellectuals, and once again, he has the last word on a subject of central importance to all Americans.”—Barbara Ehrenreich
“It’s amazing how much nonsense about unions is believed, and how little is really known about their purpose and proud history. Bill Fletcher sets the record straight, and he tells us a thrilling story while doing it. A thriving union movement is crucial to the well-being of working men and women and to the overall health of our democratic way of life. This book – better than any other I’ve read – explains why.”—Bob Herbert, Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and former Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times
"Isn't it curious that the loudest, most venomous voices against unions are the CEOs and Wall Streeters who profit by keeping America's working families down and unions out? In this powerful book, Bill Fletcher exposes their self-serving lies, and points out the obvious: unions work. Not only do they advance our economy, but also our democracy and our nation's historic pursuit of social justice."—Jim Hightower, author, radio commentator, public speaker, and editor of The Hightower Lowdown
"Even before I read Bill Fletcher's new book, I knew it was a 'must read.' Having read it now, my instincts have been confirmed. Bill Fletcher is a brilliant thinker in Ella Baker's tradition. He is an organizer extraordinaire who writes from thirty years experience in labor and freedom movements. “They’re Bankrupting Us!” speaks to a very broad audience about the diversity, complexity and vitality of the United States labor movement. And who better to tell that story and teach that lesson, than this amazing intellectual, committed activist and tireless movement teacher."—Barbara Ransby, Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago and author of Ella Baker and the Black Freedom Movement
"Bill Fletcher's new book is a must read for every worker in America. Full of surprising stories and useful facts, "They're Bankrupting Us!" uncovers everything we ever wanted to know about how unions work, and the true role that unions have played in shaping the nature of our work today."—Ai-jen Poo, Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance
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Top Customer Reviews
My first issue with this book is that the chapters are titled for the myths Fletcher intends to discuss, but I often found myself needing to refer back to try to remember what myth I was supposed to be reading about. The purpose of the chapters gets lost sometimes in Fletcher's efforts to provide as much information as possible about the history of unions. Perhaps a different format would have suited his writing style better.
My second issue with this book is that I could frequently think of arguments against what Fletcher was saying, and not because I disagree with unions. With books/articles/documentaries etc. like this I always like to try to think about what someone with the opposing viewpoint might think, or arguments they might make, and I found I often had many questions. There were a lot of gaps Fletcher left unfilled.
Overall I think this book has some great content for people who want to know more about unions. If someone just wants a good overview, this would probably do it. However, if someone wanted to be able to have a really in-depth debate about them then they would probably want to also read some other things.
In the spirit of full disclosure I received this book as part of the Goodreads.com First Reads program. This has not influenced my review in any way. This review was re-posted from goodreads.com
If you are looking for a beginner's guide to the labor movement, this book is a perfect starting point. It will arm you with the right talking points for you to rebut your anti-union friend the next time he goes on one of his rants about "big labor" destroying our economy.
If you are already familiar with labor, this book may not be for you. It is rather basic in it's arguments. I found that I did not learn much new from the book. It was telling me things I already knew, preaching to the choir, so to speak.
Here's a great idea: Would make a perfect Christmas gift for that person on your list that watches too much Fox News.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book will educate you more about unions and their importance.Published 4 months ago by Dana Canada
An interesting insight into the pro-union ideology. Well written syntactically. Fletcher does make an honest attempt to represent and challenge counter arguments. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
A quite straightforward and honest review of unions, both good and not-so-good. The description is written by a union organizer, and so one gets a good idea of what unions can do... Read morePublished 8 months ago by A. Paolini
Bill does an excellent job explaining how unions are misunderstood by workers, politicians, and the public. Read morePublished on February 14, 2014 by Gordon Clark
This book is a great book that helps debunk the myths and lies that have been told about unions this book shows people what unions are really about . Read morePublished on October 29, 2013 by chris
Bill Fletcher, a civil rights and labor leader, looks at the current negative opinions generated by employers and politicians about public and private-sector labor unions - and... Read morePublished on July 7, 2013 by Abigail's Daughter
I have been in the construction industry for 16 years dealing with the financial side of the union. This book opened my eyes to the good things unions have done.Published on June 4, 2013 by Mary T. Vinagro