Gem of the day

Nelson Lichtenstein examines the Supreme Court's decision to block a class-action sex-discrimination lawsuit against Wal-Mart that could have impacted over 1.6 million current and former female workers of the megacorporation. His conclusion:

"There used to be a remedy for this sort of managerial authoritarianism: it was called a union...For a time it seemed as if the class-action lawsuit might be a partial substitute. By drastically limiting how a class-action suit can be brought, the Supreme Court leaves millions of service-sector workers with few avenues to escape the grinding work life and limited opportunities that so many now face."

It's clear unions don't function as an institution anymore; they yield increasingly little force in the U.S. and membership has been dropping for years. But even more importantly, either way the Court's decision is yet another signal establishing corporations and their leadership teams as power holders that can basically do whatever they want.

And in other news, why should any company ever be allowed to get away with the kinds of labor and social policies that Wal-Mart has?

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