The Latest From The “Occupy May Day" Facebook Page- March Separately, Strike Together –International General Strike- Down Tools! Down Work Computers! Down Books!- All Out On May Day 2012- Why You, Your Union , Or Your Community Organization Needs To Join The May Day 2012 General Strike In Boston-Stand Up!-Fight Back!
Click on the headline to link to updates from the Occupy May Day Facebook Page website. Occupy May Day has called for an international General Strike on May Day 2012. I will post important updates as they appear on that site.
An Injury To One Is An Injury To All!-Defend The Occupation Movement And All The Occupiers! Drop All Charges Against All Occupy Protesters Everywhere!
Fight-Don’t Starve-We Created The Wealth, Let's Take It, It’s Ours! Labor And The Oppressed Must Rule!
OB Endorses Call for General Strike
January 8th, 2012 • mhacker •
Passed Resolutions No comments The following proposal was passed by the General Assembly on Jan 7, 2012:
Occupy Boston supports the call for an international General Strike on May 1, 2012, for immigrant rights, environmental sustainability, a moratorium on foreclosures, an end to the wars, and jobs for all. We recognize housing, education, health care, LGBT rights and racial equality as human rights; and thus call for the building of a broad coalition that will ensure and promote a democratic standard of living for all peoples.
Why You, Your Union , Or Your Community Organization Needs To Join The May Day 2012 General Strike In Boston-Stand Up!-Fight Back!
Wage cuts, long work hours, steep consumer price rises, unemployment, small or no pensions, little or no paid vacation time, plenty of poor and inadequate housing, homelessness, and wide-spread sicknesses as a result of a poor medical system or no health insurance. Sound familiar? Words, perhaps, taken from today’s global headlines? Well, yes. But these were also the similar conditions that faced our forebears in America back in the 1880s when the 1% were called, and rightly so, “the robber barons,” and threatened, as one of their kind stated in a fit of candor, “to hire one half of the working class to kill the other half,” so that they could maintain their luxury in peace. That too has not changed.
What did change then is that our forebears fought back, fought back long and hard, starting with the fight for the eight-hour day symbolized each year since 1886 by a May Day celebration of working class power. We need to reassert that claim. This May Day let us revive that tradition as we individually act around our separate grievances and strike, strike like the furies, collectively against the 1%.
No question over the past several years (really decades but it is just more public and in our face now) American working people has taken it on the chin, taken it on the chin in every possible way. Starting with massive job losses, heavy job losses in the service and manufacturing sectors (and jobs that are not coming back), paying for the seemingly never-ending bail–out of banks, other financial institutions and corporations “too big to fail,” home foreclosures and those “under water,” effective tax increases (since the rich refuse to pay, we pay), mountains of consumer debt for everything from modern necessities to just daily get-bys, and college student loan debt as a lifetime deadweight around the neck of the kids there is little to glow about in the harsh light of the “American Dream.”
Add to that the double (and triple) troubles facing immigrants, racial and ethnic minorities, and women and the grievances voiced in the Declaration of Independence seem like just so much whining. In short, it is not secret that working people have faced, are facing and, apparently, will continue to face an erosion of their material well-being for the foreseeable future something not seen by most people since the 1930s Great Depression, the time of our grandparents (or great-grandparents).
That is this condition will continue unless we take some lessons from those same 1930s and struggle, struggle like demons, against the 1% that seem to have all the card decks stacked against us. Struggle like they did in places like Minneapolis, San Francisco, Toledo, Flint, and Detroit. Those labor-centered struggles demonstrated the social power of working people to hit the “economic royalists” (the name coined for the 1% of that day) to shut the bosses down where it hurts- in their pocketbooks and property.
The bosses will let us rant all day, will gladly take (and throw away) all our petitions, will let us use their “free-speech” parks (up to a point as we have found out via the Occupy movement), and curse them to eternity as long as we don’t touch their production, “perks,” and profits. Moreover an inspired fight like the actions proposed for this May Day 2012 can help new generations of working people, organized, unorganized, unemployed, homeless, houseless, and just plain desperate, help themselves to get out from under.
*Hands Off Our Public Worker Unions! Hands Off All Our Unions!
* Give the unemployed work! Billions for public works projects to fix America’s broken infrastructure (bridges, roads, sewer and water systems, etc.)!
From The Transitional Program Of The Leon Trotsky-Led Fourth International In 1938Sliding Scale of Wages and Sliding Scale of Hours
Under the conditions of disintegrating capitalism, the masses continue to live the meagerized life of the oppressed, threatened now more than at any other time with the danger of being cast into the pit of pauperism. They must defend their mouthful of bread, if they cannot increase or better it. There is neither the need nor the opportunity to enumerate here those separate, partial demands which time and again arise on the basis of concrete circumstances – national, local, trade union. But two basic economic afflictions, in which is summarized the increasing absurdity of the capitalist system, that is, unemployment and high prices, demand generalized slogans and methods of struggle.
The Fourth International declares uncompromising war on the politics of the capitalists which, to a considerable degree, like the politics of their agents, the reformists, aims to place the whole burden of militarism, the crisis, the disorganization of the monetary system and all other scourges stemming from capitalism’s death agony upon the backs of the toilers. The Fourth International demands employment and decent living conditions for all.
Neither monetary inflation nor stabilization can serve as slogans for the proletariat because these are but two ends of the same stick. Against a bounding rise in prices, which with the approach of war will assume an ever more unbridled character, one can fight only under the slogan of a sliding scale of wages. This means that collective agreements should assure an automatic rise in wages in relation to the increase in price of consumer goods.
Under the menace of its own disintegration, the proletariat cannot permit the transformation of an increasing section of the workers into chronically unemployed paupers, living off the slops of a crumbling society. The right to employment is the only serious right left to the worker in a society based upon exploitation. This right today is left to the worker in a society based upon exploitation. This right today is being shorn from him at every step. Against unemployment, “structural” as well as “conjunctural,” the time is ripe to advance along with the slogan of public works, the slogan of a sliding scale of working hours. Trade unions and other mass organizations should bind the workers and the unemployed together in the solidarity of mutual responsibility. On this basis all the work on hand would then be divided among all existing workers in accordance with how the extent of the working week is defined. The average wage of every worker remains the same as it was under the old working week. Wages, under a strictly guaranteed minimum, would follow the movement of prices. It is impossible to accept any other program for the present catastrophic period.
Property owners and their lawyers will prove the “unrealizability” of these demands. Smaller, especially ruined capitalists, in addition will refer to their account ledgers. The workers categorically denounce such conclusions and references. The question is not one of a “normal” collision between opposing material interests. The question is one of guarding the proletariat from decay, demoralization and ruin. The question is one of life or death of the only creative and progressive class, and by that token of the future of mankind. If capitalism is incapable of satisfying the demands inevitably arising from the calamities generated by itself, then let it perish. “Realizability” or “unrealizability” is in the given instance a question of the relationship of forces, which can be decided only by the struggle. By means of this struggle, no matter what immediate practical successes may be, the workers will best come to understand the necessity of liquidating capitalist slavery.
*End the endless wars! Immediate Unconditional Withdrawal Of All U.S./Allied Troops and Mercenaries From Afghanistan (and the residuals from Iraq)! Hands Off Iran! Hands Off The World!
* Full citizenship rights for all those who made it here no matter how they got here!
* A drastic increase in the minimum wage and big wage increases for all workers!
* A moratorium on home foreclosures! No evictions!
* A moratorium on student loan debt! Free, quality higher education for all! Create 100, 200, many publicly-supported Harvards!
*No increases in public transportation fares! No transportation worker lay-offs! For free quality public transportation for all!
To order to flex our collective bottom up power on May 1, 2012 we will be organizing a wide-ranging series of mass collective participatory actions:
*We will be organizing within our unions- or informal workplace organizations where there is no union - a one-day general strike.
*We will be organizing where a strike is not possible to call in sick, or take a personal day, as part of a coordinated “sick-out.”
*We will be organizing students to walk-out of their schools (or not show up in the first place), set up campus picket lines, or to rally at a central location, probably Boston Common.
*We will be calling in our communities for a mass consumer boycott, and with local business support where possible, refuse to make purchases on that day.
• Guest Commentary from the IWW (Industrial Workers Of The World, Wobblies) website http://www.iww.org/en/culture/official/preamble.shtml
• Preamble to the IWW Constitution (1905)
• Posted Sun, 05/01/2005 - 8:34am by IWW.org Editor
• The working class and the employing class have nothing in common. There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing class, have all the good things of life.
• Between these two classes a struggle must go on until the workers of the world organize as a class, take possession of the means of production, abolish the wage system, and live in harmony with the Earth.
• We find that the centering of the management of industries into fewer and fewer hands makes the trade unions unable to cope with the ever growing power of the employing class. The trade unions foster a state of affairs which allows one set of workers to be pitted against another set of workers in the same industry, thereby helping defeat one another in wage wars. Moreover, the trade unions aid the employing class to mislead the workers into the belief that the working class have interests in common with their employers.
• These conditions can be changed and the interest of the working class upheld only by an organization formed in such a way that all its members in any one industry, or in all industries if necessary, cease work whenever a strike or lockout is on in any department thereof, thus making an injury to one an injury to all.
• Instead of the conservative motto, "A fair day's wage for a fair day's work," we must inscribe on our banner the revolutionary watchword, "Abolition of the wage system."
• It is the historic mission of the working class to do away with capitalism. The army of production must be organized, not only for everyday struggle with capitalists, but also to carry on production when capitalism shall have been overthrown. By organizing industrially we are forming the structure of the new society within the shell of the old.
Watch this website and other social media sites for further specific details of events and actions.
All out on May Day 2012.