Jack Metzgar

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Jack Metzgar

Template:TOCnestleft Jack Metzgar is a Chicago based academic and socialist activist.

Mickey Jarvis connection

Jack Metzgar knew Mickey Jarvis well;

The deceased Steelworker leader Jim Balanoff once told me, as Mickey Jarvis was walking away after a meeting, "Give me a thousand like that one, and I could change the world." I didn't know Mickey very well yet, and he seemed a little disorganized to me, so it wasn't clear to me what Jim meant. But I eventually figured it out, and the occasion of Mickey's death makes me realize what an enormous asset he was, to me personally and to the anti-deindustrialization movement we were both part of in the 1980s.
Mickey was crucial in establishing Labor Research Review in the 1980s and in our early successes. He had such a wide national network of people who trusted his opinion that he was a great salesman and promoter. But more important was his role on our Editorial Committee. At a time when there was so little fightback in the official labor movement, Mickey seemed to know about every creative effort against plant closings and contract concessions at the local level. For our first ten issues Mickey seeded more articles than anybody else on the committee. While, as I found out later, many of our authors were alumni of the Revolutionary Union (RU), as was Mickey, that was because RU alums were involved in so many foundational struggles. Mickey didn't check people's political credentials (though he uniformly knew what they were) if he thought they were doing something productive that others could learn from.
Jack Metzgar, former editor of Labor Research Review.[1]

Open letter to Andy Stern

On May 1 2008, Jack Metzgar an Emeritus Professor of Humanities, Roosevelt University signed an open letter to SEIU president Andy Stern in protest at SEIU move to force its local United Healthcare Workers into trusteeship.

"We are writing to express our deep concern about SEIU's threatened trusteeship over its third largest local, United Healthcare Workers (UHW). We believe that there must always be room within organized labor for legitimate and principled dissent, if our movement is to survive and grow. Putting UHW under trusteeship would send a very troubling message and be viewed, by many, as a sign that internal democracy is not valued or tolerated within SEIU. In our view, this would have negative consequences for the workers directly affected, the SEIU itself, and the labor movement as a whole. We strongly urge you to avoid such a tragedy."

How Class Works

The "How Class Works - 2008" conference held at Stony Brook, New York, June 5 - 7, 2008, Center for Study of Working Class Life, proposed speakers list included: Sam Anderson, Catherine-Mercedes Brillantes Judge, Pedro Caban, Fuat Ercan, Claudia Fegan, Bill Fletcher Jr, Tami Gold, Elizabeth Hoffman, Sara Jarayaman, Stathis Kouvelakis, Sherry Linkon, Meizhu Lui, Manning Marable, Jack Metzgar, Nelson Motto, Manny Ness, Bertell Ollman, Jeff Perry, Catherine Pouzoulet, David Roediger, Andrew Ross, John Russo, Vinny Tirelli, Michelle Tokarczyk, Richard Trumka and Joe Wilson.

Conference organiser was Michael Zweig Director, Center for Study of Working Class Life, Department of Economics State University of New York ,Stony Brook, NY[2].

DSA member

Jack Metzgar was named as a member of Democratic Socialists of America, in Democratic Left, January/February 1991 issue, page 16.

In 2009, Jack Metzgar is the author of Striking Steel: Solidarity Remembered, Roosevelt University Emeritus Professor of Humanities, and a member of Chicago Democratic Socialists of America Greater Oak Park branch[3].

Thanked by Zweig

"The Working Class Majority: America's Best Kept Secret, Second Edition By Michael Zweig acknowledged Joe Berry, Ron Blackwell, Jim Borbely, Ross Borden, Gene Bruskin, Jeff Crosby, Fernando Gapasin, Penny Lewis, Stephanie Luce, Maria Maisto, Jack Metzgar, Rachel Micah-Jones, Dennis O'Neil, Jay D. Mazur, Steven Pitts, Warren Sanderson, Heidi Shierholz, Craig Smith, Megan Smith, Ralph Trioche, Luis Valenzuela, Victor Wallis, Kris Warner, Devon Whitham, Anne Weigard, and Robert Saute for their help.



  1. [REMEMBERING MICKEY A MEMORIAL GATHERING FOR MICKEY JARVIS (1949-2005) New York City, May 21, 2005 Jack Metzgar]
  2. How Class Works - 2008 conference
  3. http://www.chicagodsa.org/ngarchive/ng127.html#anchor140164