Economic Update: Anti-Mandate is NOT Anti-Vaccine

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On this week's show, Prof. Wolff presents a critique of obscene wealth in the US and the economics of the rape crisis in th US and UK. The second half of the show features an interview with author Bob Hennelly, on the anti-mandate vs anti-vaccine confusion and the debate over Democratic Party losses and strategies.

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About our guest: Bob Hennelly is an award winning print and broadcast journalist. He is a staff reporter with the Chief-Leader, a New York City based labor focused newspaper since 1897: there Bob has been covering US labor nationally for several years. Bob is also a regular contributor for Salon where he writes about the economy and politics. Over the years he has done reporting for CBS's 60 Minutes, the New York Times, the Village Voice, the Christian Science Monitor, CBS MoneyWatch, National Public Radio, WNYC, and Pacifica. Bob has been dedicated to covering the pandemic through the perspective of health care workers, first responders and the entire essential workforce. He is the author of his new book, just released and published by Democracy at Work: "Stuck Nation: Can the United States Change Course on Our History of Choosing Profits Over People?" available at www.democracyatwork.info/books.

Links: For more information about the author and book, go to www.democracyatwork.info/books

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Showing 3 comments

  • Maria Carnemolla-Mania
    commented 2022-01-05 11:50:10 -0500
    Dear Deborah Bayer,

    Prof. Wolff has responded to your comment. See below:

    Thank you for your communication. I agree with pretty much all you say there with one exception. Before I explain the one exception, please understand that I am more than open to being shown I have erred in my judgment. I tried to check the bewildering array of often contradictory scientific and medical reports I could find. One particular fact (if that is what it is) concerns the claim that vaccinated people re as able and likely to infect others as unvaccinated people. If true, that could mean that being vaccinated or not for person A is not material to another person B becoming infected with Covid via contact with A. On that basis it struck me that employer (private or public) mandates was not necessary to stem Covid and was a profoundly retrograde step in the long, conflictual history of employer/employee relationships where negotiations to reach consent, not mandates, were the acceptable way to work out solutions to workplace problems. Respondents to my statements have since then argued to me that unvaccinated people get sick more often and to a worse extent (i.e. needing hospitalization) than vaccinated people. That strikes me as a powerful argument because we ALL need ready access to hospitals and if that is denied, blocked or even just made more dangerous by unvaccinated people, then that social interest is a valid basis for mandates. I would then only press that mandates be universal and issued by the government and not be left to individual employers to use as a way to undermine or roll back worker protections from arbitrary employer dictates. If you have a moment to comment on this response, I can assure you that I will read and respond as well.
  • Chris Sturr
    commented 2021-12-23 10:03:35 -0500
    I agree with you, Deborah. Maybe for some jobs, frequent testing could be an alternative to vaccination. But for some key frontline workers, including health care workers, I don’t see a problem with mandating vaccines. Also, arguments against mandates often do bleed into anti-vax arguments, since they often hinge on downplaying the effectiveness of vaccines in reducing infection and transmission.
  • Deborah Bayer
    commented 2021-12-22 17:01:01 -0500
    As a Registered Nurse, I support federal mandates for health care workers, airline employees, etc. to be vaccinated. These public health measures make absolute sense, and as a patient advocate under my license, I have complied. To say I am not against vaccines, but I am against mandates is not a clear message. I do not want my union to argue against mandates. We are in a global pandemic and none of us have a personal choice. I wouldn’t come to work drunk, and if I did, my employer would have the right (and the obligation) to send me home or ultimately fire me. Coming to work unvaccinated is the same thing. I would be a danger to my fellow workers and patients.

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