From the Hard Hats to the NASCAR Dads

In today’s media, you would be hard pressed to find a “working-class liberal.”  Invoking the word “liberal” is more likely to fill the political imagination with Swedish cars, unpronounceable coffee drinks, and fine wine, than down-home folks.  There are, of course, blue-collar conservatives and Reagan Democrats by the truckload in American political discourse, but seemingly very few wage earners who might consider themselves to the left of whatever passes for the center these days.  While the reality is much more complex than the rhetoric, as linguist Geoffrey Nunberg has shown, the term liberal in contemporary political discourse is currently reserved for everything that the working class is not.

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White Working-Class Voters and the Future of Progressive Politics

In the aftermath of the 2016 election, there have been hundreds of reflections written on the behavior, attitudes, needs, and prospects of the “white working class,” a segment of the population that will prove vital to any progressive coalition that stands for both social and economic justice. But what do we mean by “white working class”?

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Organizing in a Brave New World

Austerity, growing inequality, and the economic and political domination of billionaires, bankers, hedge funds, and giant corporations make the current moment ripe for birthing a movement that can radically transform the country and the world. This is a time of great peril, but also of extraordinary opportunity and—yes—reasons for hope. The last four decades have been characterized by unrelenting attacks on the working class, the weakening of unions and the financialization of capitalism.

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