Please Support the Striking Battery Wharf Hotel Workers

D&S‘s 45th-anniversary celebration last night was a big success, with around 50 people, including many former members of the D&S collective and staff and many other longtime supporters, food and drink, and wonderful talks by Arthur MacEwan and Juliet Schor.

We encouraged people at the event to contribute to the Thanksgiving strike fund for the Battery Wharf Hotel workers, of Boston’s UNITE HERE Local 26, who have been on strike since early October.  Here is the email we received about the Thanksgiving strike fund.  Please consider contributing and spreading the word.

Donate to Give Thanksgiving to a Family on Strike at the Battery Wharf Hotel

My name is Yu-Zhen Yu. I have worked as a room attendant at the Battery Wharf Hotel in Boston for four years. Here in Boston, we’ve started our third month on strike. As we near Thanksgiving 2019, we will remain on strike.

We are striking because we believe one job should be enough for every hotel worker in Boston. Westmont’s Battery Wharf Hotel is the ONLY union hotel that has not agreed to a fair contract that ensures sexual harassment protections, job security, and affordable health care. Without these things, we cannot take care of our families.

We will not let this hotel get rid of everything that makes working at the Battery Wharf Hotel a good union job! We are asking for your help to win this fight. We are raising money to give gift cards to strikers like myself so we can buy food for our families this Thanksgiving. Your support will keep us strong.

Please donate to support the strike at https://actionnetwork.org/fundraising/local-26-strike-assistance-fund-2/.

Then, send this email to five more people who will dig deep to help striking families like mine this Thanksgiving.

In Solidarity,

Yu-Zhen Yu

UNITE HERE Local 26

Our Latest Issue! Plus: Save the Date!

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Our September/October 2019 issue is at the printers and has been sent to e-subscribers.  You can find the table of contents here, and the cover story, “Why Economics?,” by D&S co-founder Frank Ackerman, who died in August, here.  Below is the issue’s p. 2 editors’ note. 

Not the Only Dreamer

Frank Ackerman, the co-founder of Dollars & Sense who died this past July, was a funny guy. In the retrospective on his career in economics that is this issue’s cover story (p. 9), he called D&S “the ultimate Marxist-Lennonist enterprise: you could say that we were dreamers, but we weren’t the only ones.”

It seems fitting that this issue, which pays tribute to Frank and his work, comes out right after the Global Youth Climate Strike, led by students around the world, on July 20th (and continuing on subsequent Fridays), which activist and teacher Jane Paul reports on in this issue (p. 6). Frank’s retrospective says says that the arc of his career went from “youthful optimism” to “mature pessimism about how unpredictably bad the worst cases can turn out to be.” But his work later in his career exposing economists’ complicity in minimizing the damage from climate change itself held out hope for preventing the worst outcomes, and can bolster the youthful optimism of the climate strikers and those of us joining in their demand for urgent action.

Besides Frank’s first-hand account of his career, this issue also includes a tribute to Frank and his academic and intellectual accomplishments by Arthur MacEwan, another D&S co-founder and our columnist (p. 7). In addition to his eight years at D&S, his writings on the economics of climate change, and his most recent work on the “puzzling frequency of catastrophic events,” Frank also made important contributions to the critique of neoclassical economics, including the theory of general equilibrium and cost-benefit analysis. This issue’s 45th-anniversary reprint is “Pricing the Priceless” (p. 27), co-authored by Frank and Lisa Heinzerling, a professor of environmental law. This article, from the March/April 2003 issue of D&S, summarizes their research critiquing cost-benefit analysis, the approach mainstream economists take to public policy which tries to put a price tag on everything, often with nonsensical and potentially disastrous results. Lastly, we include a review of Frank’s most recent book, Worst-Case Economics, by economist Robert Buchele (p. 29).

Like Frank, we dream of a more just world, and we carry on Frank’s projects—from D&S to the fights for economic and climate justice—well-armed with the intellectual tools he has given us.

Also in this issue: our columnist John Miller on the resuscitation of private social security accounts; economist Bruce Parry’s primer on debt; economist Francisco Aldape on fuel theft and governance in Mexico; and more!

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Save the Date to Celebrate!

Subscribers, readers, and supporters in the Boston area are cordially invited to D&S’ 45th Anniversary Celebration, on Thursday, November 14th at 6:30 p.m., at the Community Room of the Nonprofit Center (89 South St., Boston, Mass. 02111). Speakers will include Boston College professor of sociology and former D&S collective member Juliet Schor, and D&S co-founder and columnist Arthur MacEwan. We will celebrate D&S’ history and mission over wine and beer, cheese and crackers, and other snacks. RSVP by visiting: http://bit.ly/45th-party-11-14-19.

Whether or not you can make it to the event, we encourage you to give to the five-year D&S Sustainability Fund Campaign, which we are launching at the event. We will have more details about the campaign in our November/December issue and via mailings to subscribers and supporters. Contact Tom Louie (tlouie@dollarsandsense.org) for more details.