Sunday, June 20, 2010

America on Strike

Book Review

By Richard E. Noble

This book is a survey of major Labor strikes in America. It begins in the colonial period with the Boot and Shoe Makers Journeymen’s Trial of 1806 and ends with the Traffic Controllers Strike of 1981 and the Oystermen’s Strike of 1985.
The Oystermen’s strike is unique to this volume. It is included because I was an oysterman and I participated in that strike. I knew that it was not recorded in any of the annals of history and would never be recorded unless I recorded it. So I did so to the best of my recollection.

I documented everything in this book to the best of my ability and I did extensive reading and research. I personally feel that the bibliography alone is worth the price of this book to anyone seriously interested in this subject.

I footnoted many specifics and listed after each chapter the general reading material most dominant in producing that chapter. It should go without saying that all my reading on this subject is not listed. There are many books that are relevant and have been an aid to me in understanding these issues but did not relate specifically so I did not list them.

The volume also includes a few brief biographies of some outstanding characters in the American labor movement and it concludes with what I have labeled as A Theory on the Evolution of Today’s Liberal Politics.

My theory is written as a brief historical overview of the events and the attitudes towards those events that have been the stimulus for today’s liberal philosophy in my opinion. This is a positive evaluation and not a negative evaluation. It is meant to be an explanation on how and why liberals have come to their conclusions and opinions. I feel that this “theory” is valuable to both readers from the left and the right. After reading it many younger readers on the left should have a greater understanding of the foundations of their opinions and beliefs. For those on the right, it should provide insight into their “enemies” – possibly revelation.

There have been tens of thousands of major labor strikes in the United States and an equal number of prominent labor activists and fighters. This book is a small sampling designed by this author to hopefully stimulate others into continuing research into this subject. The history of labor in America is a neglected area in our American narrative. It deserves considerably more attention.

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