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Working Life Episode 195: How to Steal an Election 101; Haitian Garment Workers Rise Up

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Voting in America, compared to many other countries, is not easy. That’s always been true. Donald Trump’s relentless effort to undermine the vote in November, in this case by crippling the postal service and trying to make it impossible for ballots to be counted on time, is surely corrupt. But, the undermining of the vote is made easier by a rickety election system that has existed for decades. Miles Rapoport, a former Connecticut Secretary of State and, now, Senior Practice Fellow in American Democracy at Harvard’s Ash Center, talks to me about the threat to voting this Fall, what we can do and his bigger project to implement a national mandate that everyone must vote as a civic requirement.

If you wanted to pick a country that has been ravaged for decades by economic, political and physical blows a grimly appropriate choice would be Haiti—a country that is the poorest place to live in the Western Hemisphere. Its people endured decades of autocratic rule under the Duvalier regimes, who looted the country.  More recently, the scars of a 7.0 earthquake in 2010 still loom large because a desperately poor country always has less ability to cope with a natural disaster and, then, fully recover. Lauren Stewart, the Solidarity Center’s Regional Director for the Americas, joins me to tell the tale of a campaign by Haitian garment workers to survive the COVID-19 pandemic which has put many out of work.

This blog originally appeared at Working Life on August 19, 2020. Reprinted with permission.

About the Author: Jonathan Tasini is a political / organizing / economic strategist. President of the Economic Future Group, a consultancy that has worked in a couple of dozen countries on five continents over the past 20 years.


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