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Unions and collective bargaining are not dinosaurs in 2011 as some would wish. The broad trend of these past 200 years, let alone 150, in the political arena suggests that democratic principles in the workplace are not easily eviscerated.

This then is our challenge. It is not a new challenge, though the past 150 years since our Civil War have produced institutions and dynamics of which we did not think of just a few years ago— representative democracy, freedom of association, and a quest for equality. Next year is tomorrow. In a very different form, this is what WBG wrote of when he spoke of the “holiest of all causes,” the cause of “Right and Equality” during some of the most difficult days of our Civil War.


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