Today in Labor History; Labor Book: Cut From Plain Cloth: The 2011 Wisconsin Workers Protests; Labor Humor: Inefficient Schubert

Today in Labor History: April 19
An American domestic terrorist’s bomb destroys the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people, 99 of whom were government employees – 1995
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Labor Book: Cut From Plain Cloth: The 2011 Wisconsin Workers Protests
The 2011 worker uprising in Wisconsin made history: hundreds of thousands of enraged workers and supporters converged on the state capital of Madison to protest the gutting of public employee collective bargaining. Cut From Plain Cloth, a moving and beautifully-executed new book, marks the event for the piece of history it is, documenting the stories of demonstrators ranging from dedicated and overworked teachers to an unsettled Vietnam vet who finally felt welcomed back to his country, from high school students supporting those teachers to a 79-year-old German immigrant with a history of speaking truth to power.

Labor Humor: Inefficient Schubert

An efficiency consultant gave his critique of Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony: All 12 violins played the same notes: this is unnecessary duplication and their number should be cut; For a considerable period, the oboe players had nothing to do; their number should be reduced and their work spread evenly among other staff; No useful purpose is served by repeating with horns the passage that was already handled by the strings. If such redundancies were eliminated, the concert could be cut 20 minutes; The symphony has two movements. Mr. Schubert should have been able to achieve his musical goals in one. The consultant’s conclusion: click here for the punchline.

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