about laborlou.com [2012]

Posted on January 29, 2012 by

You won’t find out everything about me by reading laborlou.com.

I almost never mention friends and family by name.

Or talk too much about my work.

But it’s not hard, for example, to guess my age.  Especially when I write about the roots of my pragmatic progressivism:

How the “new left” blew it when we deserted Humphrey in ’68 and handed the white house to Nixon.

I’m also pretty transparent about my affinity for the labor movement.  Though I’ll admit to a love / hate relationship with American unions, it’s mostly love.

From time to time I’ll recall Bensonhurst Brooklyn, where a working-class Jewish kid could pick up a few “street smarts” before his escape.

My sweetest reminisces, though, are reserved for Vermont, where – in the late ‘70s – I covered state politics and town meetings for a radical weekly newspaper.

Then, at the start of the Reagan era, I was off to Los Angeles.

And watched – with some amazement - L.A.’s gradual transformation into the most progressive big city / county / region in the U.S.

Which takes us to 2012 and my 16th presidential election.

I opened this site nearly three years ago to comment on Barack Obama.  I expect to spend the rest of this year talking about – among other things – the absolute necessity of re-electing him.

Urging you to set aside your frustrations and disappointments.

Begging you to work hard for this president and the other “down ticket” democrats.

Agreeing with you about how our political allies take advantage of us and continue to sell us out.

And promising to air out that argument.

In 2013.

Comments (11)


  1. Ernesto says:

    Amen to that Lou.

  2. Carlos says:

    I think labor will be spending the rest of this year on the pay check protection bill. If this bill passes I don’t care who’s President. It’s time we all fought back and quit blamming others for our problems. Lets get working or this will be our Waterloo.

  3. This is something I have been saying from day one. Everyone who voted for Obama and expressed instantaneous “buyer’s remorse” did so because
    they thought they were voting for a messiah, and
    not a politician.

    There is a lot about this presidency that is disappointing to those who value human rights, esp. those who want to see Gitmo closed, and a real end to war. This is what allows the Ron Paul-ites to seep through the cracks, but from an economic standpoint, Ron Paul is no different than Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, or Mitt Romney. He will do to the workers in this country what coach Sandusky is accused of having done to minor boys.

    When you vote for the next president, you will be voting, too, for the next appointment to the Supreme Court. Those who value a woman’s right to choose, affirmative action, the Voters Rights Act, and the First and Fourth Amendment should think of that, and vote for Obama, if only to protect civil rights legislation, and labor in this country

  4. Frank Gruber says:

    I have no buyer’s remorse about Obama. He’s done a fantastic job. Let’s get him reelected and get him a Democratic Congress again.

  5. Steve Weingarten says:

    That is a great portrait, Lou. If you keep giving clues like that, people will recognize you on the street. Celebrity can be a bear. More to the point, this is the year Obama can make good on promises he didn’t keep (or even attempt to keep), mainly to Labor and Latinos. And his only chance to make headway will be if Labor and Latinos are in the street.

    • dallas sells says:

      So, Steve, were the promises kept this time? Or, as Gil Scott Heron sang (in a totally different context to be sure)
      , “the train from Washington is long overdo”.

  6. nodrama says:

    I think it is important to recognize that President Obama has actually fulfilled more than 80% of the promises that he made to us which is an amazing percentage given the fact that there is very little that a president can do on his own. Which by the way, remember when he set out to close Gitmo? He got total resistance from Republicans and no support from some Democrats. He can’t do that without the legislature. He is a politician. He needs our support and he needs us to push him. He needs to know what he is going for matters to us. If he goes to close Gitmo, and gets push back from Republicans and Blue dog Democrats and nothing but whine from us, why not just move on to another issue. It’s not like there aren’t enough things to occupy his attention. Get a grip people.

  7. Nick Eldredge says:

    A solid AMEN to nodrama’s take.
    Considering the absolute stone wall the Republicans have presented in both the House and Senate, Obama has accomplished a remarkable number of positives.

    Most important, perhaps, is that by daring to go so far out on the “limb of negotiation” with his GOP opponents, Obama gave the Grand Old Party enough time in the spotlight of values to clearly expose their cold-blooded sense of privilege and narrow, self-serving vision for the country.

    The Republicans may be in serious disarray right now. But once they finally select a candidate, an avalanche of ultra-conservative money is going to come sweeping across the land aiming to cloud and confuse and confound and abuse.

    We not not only have to get a grip.
    We gotta get to work.

  8. John Connolly says:

    In the last few months President Obama has shown what a tough customer he really is.

    As frustrating as it’s been watching him seemingly get rolled by the Tea Party-energized Republicans and Blue Dogs over much of 2010 and 2011, Obama has run a series of very cool, and often astounding, ju-jitsu moves on The Right that has put them on the defensive and in disarray.

    Of course The Prez has been helped by the frothing-at-the-mouth foolishness of the Republican primary bloodbath, which resembled nothing so much as a really bad season of ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ … complete with Donald Trump for Pete’s sake … where everybody’s gotten fired!

    The President’s patiently-prepared and impeccably-timed recent moves have suddenly blossomed into slam-dunk tactical victories that will pay off strategically come November.

    Obama’s recess-appointment of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau; his sudden progressive reinforcement of the NLRB; his slamming the door on the criminal Iraq War (with his continuing cold, determined elimination of Al Queda leadership … not to mention kidnapping pirates!); his unleashing of the Justice Department and state Attorneys-General to a few-holds-barred criminal and civil investigation to indict the actual Wall Streeters who personally caused the 2007-08 economic collapse; and his class-war counter-attack on increasingly pornographic levels of income inequality while lashing the Republicans to their “The Rich First, Last & Only” ideological anchor and forcing them to walk the plank, have all combined to pop a stunned Right back on its heels, blubbering in mutual recrimination and panic.

    Meanwhile, The Prez has remained smiling, singing, … and Frosty.

    Andrew Sullivan’s “Newsweek’ cover-story last week listing The President’s accomplishments had it pretty much right: In the face of a near-impossible Congress, his successes are stupendous. Barack Obama has taught me a passel about the virtues of patience, keeping one’s own counsel, and knowing exactly when to pull which trigger.

    No matter how down on Obama I’ve been at times; I am DOWN WITH Obama in 2012.

  9. Bill says:


    I absolutely agree. While Democratic candidates tell us what they think we want to hear ( or we hear what we like) and then all too often abandon their union supporters and working families they are, in general, superior to the alternatives from which we have to select. Maybe it’s been this way throughout our history where a voter enters the booth while holding his nose. I’m afraid this will be our experience until we do a better job of attracting more working men and women and making them solid union members. Then and only then American workers will carry more political clout.

  10. "on yahoo" says:

    “on yahoo”…

    “[...]o I have been looking for this information for quite a while. After one and a qo[...]“…

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