Judy and I and our two sons have fought our entire lives against all forms of discrimination, racial and anti-Semitic. And we have paid for it. During one incarnation of the Ku Klux Klan in Toronto where we organized resistance, somebody broke into our apartment and painted anti-Jewish slogans on the walls. My bruises from confronting white supremacists have healed. But, even in my 70s, I am still willing to challenge hatred and bigotry wherever I find it. Disappointingly, several of the attacks have come from the institutional Jewish organizations that felt uncomfortable with our criticism of Israeli policies and actions.

Larry Haiven takes a closer look at the dispute between the Crown Attorneys and the government. “The Premier and the attorney general are spreading key misconceptions, fed by the public’s (and the media’s) unfamiliarity with the process and economics of collective bargaining. To be sure, these matters can be complicated. But that’s no excuse,” he writes.

On February 20, Nova Scotia teachers will vote whether or not to engage in a strike to protest changes in the system of public education meant to remove elected school boards, further enfeeble the union and impose government control. Larry Haiven takes a closer look at that notion of an illegal strike. “Sometimes you just have to show that, as Mr. Bumble says in Dickens’ novel Oliver Twist, “The law is a ass – a idiot.” It is not at all uncommon in Canadian labour history for workers to give that message to employers and the government,” he writes.

The new collective agreement for provincial civil servants decided by an Arbitration Board is not the victory the labour movement claims it is, writes Larry Haiven. At the end of the contract workers will be earning less than they are now, how much less will depend on the inflation rate. And that’s not taking into account the freezing (and removal for new employees) of the “long-service award.

Larry Haiven on Bill 148:| “Unions and collective bargaining and, yes, strikes, are part of the price we all pay for living in a democracy, convenient or not. Bill 148 takes us back to the dark ages and workers, again, will have to take matters into their own hands.”