Tuesday, February 22, 2011

WI and OH Revitalizing Labor

Wisconsin and Ohio are revitalizing the Labor movement. We are learning a tough lesson in those states, a lesson that leads back to our roots. We have learned we can not depend exclusively on the political system. Given that corporate media is no longer even coy about slanting their coverage to the bosses, and that the Supreme Court has allowed the bosses to spend an unlimited amount on elections, the political system will fail us more often in the future.

The solution is playing out in the streets of Madison: Relational organizing and direct action.

If enough union members stick together (solidarity) then legal and political obstacles become less daunting. For example, in Madison teachers all decided to take personal days to protest last week. Superintendents decided to deny those personal days. In turn, teachers all got sick at once and called in. The end result: Schools in Madison closed for the week and no teachers were disciplined. The number of protesters last week ranged between 60,000 and 80,000 every day.

Final lesson: We shall all hang together or assuredly we will all hang separately.

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