Quote of the Day – Lew Daly

From The Church of Labor:

“Religious bodies and organized labor share many common features of identity, mission, and purpose, and share equally in the development of ideas of solidarity and their enduring appeal. In different times and places they also shared in a struggle for rights of association and a legitimate, protected place in public law. The notable correlation between church-state integration and collective bargaining strength in Europe often reflects specific political alignments of religious and labor institutions; Christian political parties and associations, of course, have played an important role in any number of highly unionized countries. To cite just one example, German Catholics helped to establish co-determination—the idea that workers have a say in the management of the companies they work for—when, at their national congress in 1949, drawing 500,000 people, they passed a resolution declaring such policies “a natural law in a divinely willed order.”

Thus in Europe did public religion and collective bargaining evolve together from a common—corporatist—legal tradition and political culture. What we need to understand is how the lack of such a tradition greatly weakened collective bargaining in the United States. One could extend this line of inquiry further, examining, for example, the no less striking absence of any family policy tradition in the United States. In the final analysis, it is easy to see how the “corporative” dimensions of society—family, labor, and religion—have been perpetually obscured in America’s extreme brand of liberalism, and it is important to consider how the very same liberalism that has strengthened individual rights in society may have helped to undermine collective rights in the economy”.

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  • Julia Smucker

    Is a measure of “church-state integration” necessary to a sense of the common good that allows for strong collective bargaining rights? I can see the coherency of this view, but its implications for religious freedom are troubling.