From the TUC

Thoughts from a TUC staffer in Cambridge, MA

02 Nov 2008, By

A combination of a glitchy wifi connection at the hotel and a pretty heavy schedule have prevented me posting as promised on the Leading Change Class of 2008 visit to Cambridge, MA.

But now its Sunday morning and there’s time to cover a few highlights and make another promise.

From speaking to the group, the undoubted highlight was the session delivered by Marshall Ganz (see previous posts). His thoughts on rebuilding activism and engagement of young people was pretty inspirational. Hed worked on Bobby Kennedy’s 68 presedential campaign and is now working for Obama.

Next highlight for me was Damon Silvers from the AFL-CIO who talked about union capital strategies but most illuminatingly about the reasons why the global system is currently in crisis. My economics knowledge stretches to an O’level grade D and my mum telling me sometime in the 80’s to take no notice of Margaret Thatcher hailing low inflation. It was obvious why inflation was low she said, there was so much unemployment (we lived in Liverpool) and people have no money, so no wonder prices are low.

Damom has that rare gift of being able to explain, simply and concisely quite complex issues.

Yesterday we travelled to to New Hampshire to help out with a union Get Out the Vote Walk (part of the union contribution to the Obama campaign. For different reasons this was just as inspirational as Marshall and Damon.

Finally for now, it would be wrong not to mention the wonderful Elaine Bernard from the Harvard Labor and Worklife programee who looked after the group. Elaine is a great trade unionist and all round good egg, her efforts with the programme, speakers and arrangements made it a trully memorable trip.

More posts on Harvard 08 to come….