Saturday, June 16, 2012

Plan B

Plan A was to organize labor into a nationwide labor union for all working wage slaves. The labor movement went from aggressively organized to playing defense, and we are getting our butts handed to us. Why? Union busting. We have now come full circle. Union busting started in the 1800 by organizations like the Pinkertons, the Baldwin-Felts, and people like James A. Farley and Pearl Bergoff. Called the kings of the strike breakers and they made millions in this line of work; but overtime workers got some relief in laws meant to protect workers like those of the National Labor Relations Board, Wagner Act, Oppressive Labor Act (Senate Bill 1970) by senators Lafollette and Thomas, who were the drivers of this bill. It worked to help labor for a time, then in the mid-1940 things started to go downhill for labor when the new union busters came on scene. People like Charles Vance, owner of International Asset Protection Team, Special Response Corporation, Hoffmaster Associates, and ManPower Inc., U.S. Nursing Corporation. The tactics that have been used have included worker replacement, intimidation with guns – M16s and shot guns, snipers, spies, and no regard to the labor laws. Corporations will pay fines to keep out unions or to bust them. The fines are minimal to keep unions out. We have gone full circle. There is just too much money in breaking unions. Vance’s International in the past fifteen years made $89 million, and that is just one of the union busters. With that kind of money labor will not win. We will have to change, but if we break the contracts or break the law, the capitals will sue labor for our assets. We need to go back to the old IWW ways, and have an independent organization with no assets, no cars, no office, and no properties; just a slush fund and cell phones. Maybe we in labor could take a lesson from the 99% and Occupy and stay away from anything that ties our hands from striking. Our office could be at home or a coffee shop with Internet access and a slush fund for lawyers. We need to just start all over. I think there is a movement by LabourStart and it is called IndustriAll and will be meeting in Copenhagen. They are meeting to establish a new global union federation. There will be more than a thousand delegates there. It is a start and maybe this will be Plan B. LabourStart is asking for everyone to tweet them using the hash tag #IndustriAll.