[help with homework]

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Thrashing_chomsky
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Dec 28 2009 13:20
[help with homework]

Hey, I'm looking for recent examples of the breaking down of divisions within the working class, specifically realted to actions against the bosses.

Like the case of the Gay and Lesbian support the miners group in the 80s.

I'm sure I heard something about a recent strike over some migrant cleaners being fired..?

Cheers

Farce's picture
Farce
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Dec 28 2009 14:47

That'd be the SOAS cleaners thing: http://www.freesoascleaners.blogspot.com/
http://www.solfed.org.uk/docs/catalyst-21.htm

As for the miners' strike, here's a short history of that group you were talking about: http://libcom.org/history/1984-85-lesbian-gay-miners-support-group
and this might also be useful: http://libcom.org/library/chapter-13-miner-conflicts-major-contradictions (has some interesting stuff about how the strike enabled miners' wives to break out of the passive housewife role and enter into militant political activity for the first time).
There's also this, which is a really good example (think we also covered it in Resistance): http://libcom.org/news/racist-comments-spark-walkout-sit-chicken-proccessing-plant-04092009

Not quite the same, but you could also argue Visteon was an example of the same phenomenon in that it meant that green campaigners, traditionally very cut off from the organised working class, got heavily involved in supporting workplace action for the first time.
Maybe also this? http://libcom.org/news/cab-drivers-wildcat-against-management-racism-16052009
And this? http://libcom.org/news/300-construction-workers-wildcat-milford-haven-ends-23092007
I'm sure there must be examples of strikes across racial lines in America and sectarian ones in NI, but can't think of any off the top of my head. Oh, and you could also look at links/solidarity between Greek anarchos and the immigrant movement there, like that cleaner who was attacked earlier this year.

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Choccy
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Dec 28 2009 16:50
Farce wrote:
Not quite the same, but you could also argue Visteon was an example of the same phenomenon in that it meant that green campaigners, traditionally very cut off from the organised working class, got heavily involved in supporting workplace action for the first time.

Do you mean Vestas?
I'm not saying there weren't any green types supporting Visteon either, but I certainly didn't see any, but I did here a lot of support from the green lot with regards Vestas.

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Steven.
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Dec 28 2009 17:41

200 Polish contractors went on strike alongside the Lindsay oil wildcat strikers

Thrashing_chomsky
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Dec 28 2009 19:09

It's too late, I've done and to be honest, fuck homework. I realise now that even a short essay of less than 1000 words is too much for me when it's politics. It took me a week to write this...

I'm going to print it out, read it and cringe in my pants.

VOTING
Social Democracy is the notion that the needs of the working class can be mediated amicably within capitalism and the state. It presupposes the economic and hierarchical systems as the normal way of going about things firstly, and then mistakenly attempts from that platform to bring about political and social equality between classes. While it may have become easier in this country to move from worker to management to boss, from job-seeking single parent to police officer, the Class system still requires a level of inequity to permeate vast numbers of the working class, to keep us struggling from wage cheque to wage cheque, to be too poor to move closer to a decent school, to be desperate, disillusioned or hungry enough to steal so the state can justify stronger laws and more prisons.
As an Anarcho-communist, I have no faith in parliamentary democracy, and I see the election as a mere handing over of the reigns of capitalism from one group to another- whether they choose to control capitalism (state capitalist), negotiate with it (old labour) or let it run rampant (conservative) depends on the party in power- but either way the result means the working class is still under the yoke of wage slavery.
In the last 3 decades, even under New Labour, which still poses as protectorates of the working class, the institutions of Social democracy have been under attack. NHS has been privatised in bits, the welfare state has been under constant attack and new rules on disability allowance are seen as many as an attempt to bleed the most vulnerable sections of our class for what labour they can get. [See: Autistics and unemployment, Aspire magazine] and trade unions, once a threat to capitalism, have become affiliates to New Labour and become stifled by bureaucratic chiefs with wages as high as the bosses and are no longer self-organised by the workers.
Many socialists of the Trotskyist tendency advocate voting in what they see as strategically placed faith in a party electorate [usually New Labour and not done without accusations of sentimentality and nostalgia for the Labour of old]. This can be born out of a threat by fascists such as the BNP, and many other nationalist groups throughout history; however it’s just as common for Trot groups to reason that a socialist turncoat is better than a fox-hunting Toff. However, Class struggle Anarchists and other ultra-leftist communists see two main issues with this tactic. The first being that parliamentary voting promotes a passive attitude in the working class by the notion that the uphill battle to get us all to vote means our voices must be important, but heavy enough that they can only carry weight every few years. Any socialist worth their salt envisions a future where the general running of society is down to the active participants acting in councils of community and workplaces. Many of us, Anarchists included, believe that the notion of solidarity and mutual aid, the seed of socialism, is innate in humans and should be nurtured into fruition. How an atomising, passive act as voting in bourgeois elections is supposed to empower us is beyond me.
Secondly, and more concretely, a socialist analysis of nationalist fascism leans us to the conclusion that it is in fact a form of political control used in times of desperate economic recession or social volatility. Put simply, when capitalism enters a recession the bosses start to cut their losses and with them the workers wages, hours and conditions. Often large sections of the working class become conscious of themselves as a class - and they act- recent boss-knappings, strikes at racist/anti-migrant policy and workplace occupations worldwide being impressive examples. [See LibCom.org for further info, analysis and news]. This, inevitably, proves a threat to the bosses interests as they want us divided by their false premises- race, sex, nationality, union, religion, if it can be exploited for labour, it will. The historical response by corporations has been to fund nationalist parties, [See: http://libcom.org/library/allied-multinationals-supply-nazi-germany-world-war-2] as their political motive is to convince the most normative working class people [usually white, heterosexual, and of the common religious persuasion] that they have more common with their boss than with their fellow worker because they have the same cultural or national characteristics.
Of course, nationalist fascism is only a last resort of capitalists to keep us from tearing the entire system of privilege and exploitation down, as it’s often quite dirty, dangerous and unpredictable for all involved. Usually, when the economy is “healthy”, the need to collect a wage to feed ourselves with at the end of the day, debt, fear of the next big terror, or of the fake threat of migration to a false sense of national identity is enough to keep us on the treadmill and jut divided enough to keep us on the treadmill.
You can see why we don’t see a future in voting ourselves out of the threat of fascism. It’s perhaps ironic that to give you an idea of one tactic [of many] for a worthwhile and effective method of combating ideological racism and organised bigotry, I should leave you with this quote, but it nails it.

"Only one thing could have broken our movement - if our enemies had understood its principle and from the first day had smashed the nucleus of our movement with extreme brutality."

(Adolf Hitler, 1933)
[See also: http://afed.org.uk/publications/pamphlets-booklets/92-resistance-to-nazism.html]

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Lexxi
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Dec 28 2009 19:26

Uh, so what's your point?

Thrashing_chomsky
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Dec 28 2009 20:02

I just wanted some help with my homework , that's all... it helped one the less.

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Lexxi
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Dec 28 2009 20:12

I meant the essay...Like, what is the point of your essay? What is it that you're trying to prove or argue? There doesn't seem to be anything particularly unique (standard critique of social democracy, standard critique of voting, standard critique of division amongst workers, standard critique of fascism). I've read the same thing in a dozen other articles, why would you bother to write another article putting forward the same message, albeit in a poorer form? o_O

Thrashing_chomsky
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Dec 28 2009 20:21

Oh sorry, I get you. It's "Why I don't vote"

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jef costello
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Dec 29 2009 00:47
Marsella wrote:
I meant the essay...Like, what is the point of your essay? What is it that you're trying to prove or argue? There doesn't seem to be anything particularly unique (standard critique of social democracy, standard critique of voting, standard critique of division amongst workers, standard critique of fascism). I've read the same thing in a dozen other articles, why would you bother to write another article putting forward the same message, albeit in a poorer form? o_O

It is an assignment for a course, he's doing it because he has to.

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Dec 29 2009 12:46
Choccy wrote:
Farce wrote:
Not quite the same, but you could also argue Visteon was an example of the same phenomenon in that it meant that green campaigners, traditionally very cut off from the organised working class, got heavily involved in supporting workplace action for the first time.

Do you mean Vestas?
I'm not saying there weren't any green types supporting Visteon either, but I certainly didn't see any, but I did here a lot of support from the green lot with regards Vestas.

Oh, shit, yeah, I did mean Vestas. That's kind of embarrassing. Damn their confusingly similar names.

Thrashing_chomsky
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Dec 29 2009 17:14

Opinions?

I really don't care much for the sort of political critique that would only carry weight within our circles... remember most of this was written in several late night sittings.
Basically, does it flow well, could there be bits taken off? etc