I wrote a brief recap of what happened to organized labor in 2012. The short version: It’s mostly hopeless, but not totally hopeless.
Notably, the good news for labor mostly occurred within “non-traditional”* unions or campaigns. I’ve written quite a fair amount about those small but meaningful successes, so here’s a truncated list if you want to read more:
'We're going to fight for what's right for the kids': Chicago teachers on why they're striking
Phoenix Rising: How one union is changing Arizona’s politics
After the strike, fast food workers expect support to grow
After Black Friday, anti-Walmart campaign goes international
And if you’re looking for the thematic through-line, here’s an analysis of why all of this is happening now:
New York’s fast food workers strike. Why now?
Lastly, though it doesn’t quite fit into the list of articles above, I can’t resist plugging this investigative report I did from Michigan shortly after the state’s governor signed its new “right-to-work” legislation:
Right-wingers Koch, ALEC, pushed Michigan ‘right-to-work’ laws
2012 was a pivotal year. For better or worse, 2013 won’t exactly be boring, either.
*Scare quotes around “non-traditional” because what we now think of as “traditional” unionism is largely a product of the post-war status quo and the National Labor Relations Act, whereas “non-traditional” labor actions are often something of a throwback to the unionism style of the 1890s/1930s.