• Doug Most

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    Doug Most is a lifelong journalist and author whose career has spanned newspapers and magazines up and down the East Coast, with stops in Washington, D.C., South Carolina, New Jersey, and Boston. He was named Journalist of the Year while at The Record in Bergen County, N.J., for his coverage of a tragic story about two teens charged with killing their newborn. After a stint at Boston Magazine, he worked for more than a decade at the Boston Globe in various roles, including magazine editor and deputy managing editor/special projects. His 2014 nonfiction book, The Race Underground, tells the story of the birth of subways in America and was made into a PBS/American Experience documentary. He has a BA in political communication from George Washington University. Profile

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There are 7 comments on Comm Ave Starbucks Strike Ends: Does That Mean Strikes Work?

  1. Michel Anteby either has no idea what he’s talking about or he is just trying to regurgitate anti-union talking points. Workers at Starbucks went on strike because Starbucks refused to negotiate with them after they won their union election. Instead, the corporate sent in a new manager who was racist, homophobic and transphobic against their workers, and cut hours for all previous employees at the store below the benefits threshold for hours worked.

    Starbucks literally brought in Pinkerton goons and tried to break the picket line. The strikers were able to win because the community has their back, and helped them to maintain the picket line 24/7 for 2 months.

    Starbucks caved because the school year just started and they are missing too much profit from the Comm Ave location. When workers come together they have the power to shut down anything. Because none of us is “replaceable”, Michel.

    1. Valuable information. I don’t believe this was the right person to have interviewed about this topic. Would have been best to have interviewed a Starbucks employee who participated in the strike. Or even David Webber over at the law school.

  2. Interestingly, this article seems to want readers to believe that strikes don’t work (especially for “replaceable” employees) but ends with an admission that the Starbucks strike DID work. Why bury the lede this deep?

    1. I noticed that too. I’m curious now to know if the interviewer and interviewee are in favor of strikes and labor organizing broadly. By the way, for anyone interested in the history of worker strikes, “Strike!” by Jeremy Brecher comes highly recommended.

  3. I appreciated Professor Anteby’s opinion, but I disagree when he said “The question is how captive you are to your employees. The more captive [a company is] to employees, the more likely a strike will end up succeeding.” I believe employees are the true captives in this economic system. Employees should never be seen as potential captors of employers, rather as agents of their own future. I believe everyone would benefit from reading the work of Richard D Wolff and Trebor Scholz surrounding worker owned enterprises (aka worker co-ops) and how they are managed.

  4. The implication in this article that the Starbucks workers were striking because they felt entitled due to a “hero narrative” rather than because they were enduring abusive working conditions is truly disconcerting. Society treats people who work minimum wage or “service” jobs as disposable, and I’m horrified to see that sentiment echoed here. Treating people as less than because of the work they do needs to end yesterday; people deserve a healthy work environment no matter the job. Our society is able to function as it does due to the work we ALL do, and it’s about time we all got with the program.

  5. Before liberal authors write an article on whether strikes work, I suggest they Google ‘Chicago 1864 labor movement’ and educate themselves. This article makes about five self-contradictory points.

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