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The largest open pit mine in California is the the US Borax/Rio Tinto mine in Boron, where the company has locked out neary 600 members of the ILWU Local 30 after workers rejected demands that they surrender any union role in the labor process. MIKE DAVIS reports on the Boron workers in the new issue of The Nation magazine; TERRI JUDD is a union activist who drives a 1600-horsepower loader in the mine. More info: http://www.boraxminers.com/
Also: “Consider the Germans”: TOM GEOGHEGHAN notes that, since 2003, it’s not China but Germany, “that colossus of European socialism,” that has led the world in exports. Germany has somehow managed to create a high-wage, unionized economy without shipping all its jobs abroad or creating a massive trade deficit, or any trade deficit at all. Tom is a labor lawyer who wrote about Germany for the March Harper’s.
Plus: Debunking 9-11 Conspiracy Theories: DAVID AARONOVITCH is a columnist for The Times (London) and a recipient of the Orwell Prize for Political Journalism. (Other winners: Patrick Cockburn and Robert Fisk.) His new book Voodoo Histories is “a brilliant, sparkling, and witty demolition” of 9-11 conspiracy theories, “and an analysis of why otherwise intelligent people are so ready to believe in them.” – Ian Kershaw, author of Hitler.