Broken Promise: The Subversion Of U.S. Labor Relations

Broken Promise: The Subversion Of U.S. Labor Relations

by James Gross

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The Wagner Act of 1935 (later the Wagner-Taft-Hartley Act of 1947) was intended to democratize vast numbers of American workplaces: the federal government was to encourage worker organization and the substitution of collective bargaining for employers' unilateral determination of vital work-place matters. Yet this system of industrial democracy was never realized; the promise was "broken." In this rare inside look at the process of government regulation over the last forty-five years, James A. Gross analyzes why the promise of the policy was never fulfilled.

Gross looks at how the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) policy-making has been influenced by the President, the Congress, the Supreme Court, public opinion, resistance by organized employers, the political and economic strategies of organized labor, and the ideological dispositions of NLRB appointees. This book provides the historical perspective needed for a reevaluation of national labor policy. It delineates where we are now, how we got here, and what fundamental questions must be addressed if policy-makers are to make changes consistent with the underlying principles of democracy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439903704
Publisher: Temple University Press
Publication date: 06/10/2010
Series: Labor And Social Change
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 422
File size: 716 KB

About the Author

James A. Gross is Professor of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University. He is the author of several books, including The Reshaping of the National Labor Relations Board: National Labor Policy in Transition, 1937-1947, which won the Philip Taft Award for labor history. He is also the editor of Worker Rights as Human Rights.

Table of Contents

PrefaceAcknowledgments1. Taft-Hartley: A Fundamental Change in Labor Policy or Merely Adjustments to Eliminate Abuses?2. Political Maneuvering to Control a New Law, a New Board, and a New Labor Czar3. Improper Influences4. Repeal Taft-Hartley: A Tale of Missed Opportunities5. Taft-Hartley Was Here to Stay6. Bargaining National Labor Policy: A Misguided Process7. The Eisenhower Board Remakes Labor Policy8. Labor Law Reform, Employer Style9. The New Frontier Labor Board: A Commitment to Industrial Democracy10. A New Labor Policy: Taking Industrial Democracy Seriously11. Irreconcilable Differences12. Making the Law Favor Employers Again13. Management Interests over Workers' Statutory Rights: The Final Irrelevance of National Labor Policy?14. ConclusionNotesIndex

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