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Information is power. Our mission at Portside is to seek out and to provide information that empowers you -- that empowers the left. Every day we search hundreds of sources to connect you with the most interesting, striking and useful material. Just once a year we appeal to you to contribute to make it possible to continue this work. Please help.

 

When The River Turned Yellow

David Bacon The American Prospect
Sixty miles south of the Arizona border, the devastation from a toxic spill has led to an epochal battle between a transnational mining conglomerate and an alliance of miners and farmers.

Coal Train

South African jazz musician Hugh Masakela tells the story of the life and labor of the immigrant coal and gold miners of South Africa, so hard that they curse the coal trains that brought them.

labor

Strikes Surge as Killings of Colombian Union Leaders Fall

Andrew Willis Bloomberg
Strikes, demonstrations and protests are at a record pace in Colombia this year as workers seek a bigger share of wealth generated by the country’s expanding economy. After 50 years of guerrilla warfare, the government’s success in weakening illegal armed groups has drawn investment and rewarded businessmen, while the gap between rich and poor remains considerable, according to the World Bank’s Gini index of income distribution.

Senators and Unions Call for Obama to Intervene in Patriot Coal Bankruptcy

Mike Elk In These Times
The miners union has filed suit claiming that Arch Coal and Peabody Energy designed Patriot Coal to fail—then shifted over a billion dollars in pension and retiree health care debts to Patriot as a ploy to get out of those obligations. The UMWA fears if Peabody and Arch get away with spinning off their obligations to a company designed to collapse, more coal companies will take similar measures.

Union Brings Fight Against Patriot to Charleston

By Taylor Kuykendall State Journal (West Virginia)
"If you don't have anybody following you," Cecil Roberts, president of the UMWA said at the rally, "you're not a leader; you're just taking a walk. When we walk out of this building today I'm going to be a leader because there is going to be 5,000 of you walking behind me."
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