No strike clauses and the IWW

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rata
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Dec 24 2007 02:49
Dundee_United wrote:
Some would say there are political agendas at work there.

Yeah, and they would be right. It's class war political agenda against reformist political agenda...

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 02:49
revol68 wrote:
Also the idea that the IWW leftist fuckwits 'do trainings' to educate workers is beyond a joke, maybe they need to educate them fucking selves, like on little things like allowing bosses into branches, being used by said bosses in a politically motivated 'workers campaign', and last but not least not signing over workers entitlement to strike.

i could get you the organizer training committee email adress.

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 02:56
Dundee_United wrote:

As for what should be done about it - that is an internal matter, and shame on those for raising the issue first on libcom without raising it internally and trying to get the matter sorted out properly. .

uh, people have been slowly gaining back ground on some(all?) of the portland contracts (that the expelled member signed) for quite some time now . it was raised here just after it was raised internally. the union has so many problems that sometimes it is good for them to be aired publicly. but i also think there is a serious problem with internal discipline in some branches that can lead to internal matters being published publicly and also in letting things like no strike contracts and the like to be signed.

pgh2a
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Dec 24 2007 04:01

Revol, I am curious, how many organizing campaigns have you been involved with?

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 04:03

zero

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 04:52
revol68 wrote:

who is that?

Dundee_United
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Dec 24 2007 04:59
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sorry i'm not a leftist i don't spend my days parachuting into struggles or signing people up to imaginary 'unions'.

Pish! How many organising campaigns?

Perhaps 'not a leftist' = i don't do anything, except promulgate ill-advised, elitist snipings on the internet?

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Nate
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Dec 24 2007 05:58

Fuck you Revol.

In case anyone who is not a piece of shit is wondering about the trainings -

the IWW trainings at least that I've been part of are not based on some sort superiority idea that we're better than other workers. A big portion of them involve roleplays on how best to talk to other workers about workplace issues in ways that will get them agitated.

And there's no parachuting here. The training is actually designed for people who are trying to get a group together in their own workplaces but aren't sure how to do so. We did a mini version last sunday in my branch with a group of co-workers who are new to the union, some members and some non-members (the trainings normally take two days, the mini-training focused on one part and was 2 hours). They all have problems at work but they aren't sure what to do or how to get their co-workers together in order to be effective. After the trainings most folk claim to feel more confident and less intimidated about starting collective action with their co-workers. In one instance folk who attended a training right afterward confronted a boss and got him to reverse an unfair firing of a friend of theirs. I don't know that it's all cuz of the training but they said the training did help them plan the action quickly and efficiently and to pull it off well. (I asked cuz I was curious, it's conceivable that they lied to me but I don't think they did.)

Another thing we sometimes do is roleplays of the unpleasant stuff that bosses do when things heat up in a workplace, like group meetings and individual meetings. Last time I was part of one person said they felt slightly nauseous afterward (so did I). The idea is to give people a taste of the experience of what bosses will do before a boss does it to them, so that when a boss does act that way against them then the person will have a better chance of not reacting badly (like giving out information when scared and so on). We've done a similar roleplay about collectively confronting a boss.

None of this is based on any idea that workers are stupid or are passive. Rather it's based on the simple idea that the more time you do stuff the better you'll be at it. So we try to help people practice some of the things involved in fighting with their bosses alongside their co-workers. It's not magic and it's not perfect, but I think it does help. It's a pretty simple concept, really.

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 06:06

nate, dont let revol wind you up.

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Bubbles
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Dec 24 2007 06:22
revol68 wrote:
Why are no strike contracts being negoiated and accepted

do you post and not read?

revol68 wrote:
why are politicians and bosses allowed to join why did it get involved in a trot shit slinging fest and dress it up as a 'workers struggle' when other unions saw it for what it was?

they are not. that was dealt with (by the GEB and in a rediculous way by BIROC)

revol68 wrote:
Why are they organising stupid co-ops and other class collaborationist shite that are irrelevant to class struggle?

most co-ops have bosses (i still think its stupid to put effort into them), we let some collectives get shop status (by approval of the GEB) because it brings benefits to the union and its members.

revol68 wrote:
Why would they boast about winning two tier benefits and solidifying sectionalism within workforces through 'senoirity recognition' that see's workers pitted against each other?

who did that?

revol68 wrote:
Where's the basic training in syndicalism 101?

we have broad political introductions and in my branch there is a (open) education committee that hosts political discussions and the like.

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Devrim
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Dec 24 2007 06:37
booeyschewy wrote:
FNB and I discussed the background for a while, and I learned some about the context.

So out of 4 contracts with no strike clauses, it is true that 3 were bargained without full knowledge of the union. In portland, the person who bargained two of these and told the branch later as an afterthought was expelled permanently (though not for the no-strike clauses, he was expelled for sketchier stuff than that sadly). Sorry for any misunderstandings there. This stuff happened before I joined, which was almost 6 years ago.

I am not quite sure what 'sketchier' means, but this seems to imply that they have worse stuff going on than the no-strike agreements, which is quite difficult to believe.

Please tell.

Devrim

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Devrim
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Dec 24 2007 06:45
Dundee_United wrote:
How many workers have you organised Revol? You're an elitist internet persona, full of pomp, piss and anarchoid religiosity. You are not however in any position to comment on anything to do with organising.

I have never organised anyone either, Dundee. However, I probably have more workplace experience than most people in the IWW, for example I have been on strike committees, and been involved in a three and a half week national wildcat strike, been involved in a workplace group with its own regular publication, oh, and by the way I am probably the only person on Libcom who has ever been a member of a mass 'revolutionary syndicalist' union.

Have you considered that 'organising' people in your pseudo-union might not even be the point?

Devrim

pgh2a
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Dec 24 2007 08:24

revol, as I said before, I do not believe that post illustrates any multi-tier system.

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the button
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Dec 24 2007 09:10

I'm in broad agreement with revol on this. As for my "workplace credentials," the IWW must kind of think they're OK, since the BIROC lifted a piece I wrote on workplace organising off libcom, & put it in Bread & Roses.

syndicalist
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Dec 24 2007 15:15
Quote:
Quote:
Portland Women's Crisis Lines Workers Win New Contract!

After a year long campaign, the workers at Portland Women's Crisis Line signed their first contract on the 6th of July. Staff decided in June 2003 to begin talking about becoming a union shop to address what they saw as problems within the agency. After a few months of intense organizing, the women at PWCL held a third party oversight election back in November to gain official recognition of their intent to unionize under the IWW. The vote resulted in a nearly unanimous yes vote, with only one person voting no and one abstention. With the union becoming recognized, staff elected a four person bargaining committee and work on the contract began.

Among the most important issues to be addressed were the lack of a clear discipline and grievance procedure, increasing staff voice to stand in accordance with the agencies grassroots democratic foundations, and a reduction in the amount of hours each person must work to be considered full time. Through the contract, workers at PWCL were able to gain these things, and much more, by working very collectively with the board of directors and executive director.

Within the eighteen month contract PWCL has secured minimum training requirements for all direct service employees and volunteers, with a clause for members of the board of directors that urges attendance at specific sessions of the basic advocacy training. The contract also has established full time classification at 36 hours per week and up, with all full time workers receiving full benefits. Part time employees receive 50% of benefits at 18 hours per week, and the bargaining team was able to secure a grandfather clause for all existing staff working at least 16 hours a week. The newly established benefits package includes four weeks of paid vacation, eleven paid holidays off, eight hours of health leave accrued per month, funeral leave for the death of any member of self-identified family, health and dental insurance, and twelve weeks of unpaid extended illness/parenting leave.

All staff members have also received raises and on call compensation, and have the ability to reopen the wage portion of the contract should agency funding increase significantly. Seniority rights have also been established, with senior staff having preference over matters such as scheduling, shift preference, vacation scheduling, layoffs and hiring. In the hiring process, staff now is guaranteed a voice in the hiring of all members of management, and staff within the sexual assault program now hold onto the right to assist in the hiring of all new staff within that program. The newly established discipline/grievance procedure has cemented use of just cause termination and Weingarten rights, as well as the implementation of a review panel consisting of the program supervisor, executive director and two employees chosen by the grievant whenever a discipline process is escalated above a written warning.

The workers at Portland Women's Crisis Line are elated with the ratification of this contract and hope that it is the beginning of a truly egalitarian agency where all staff is able to feel like their voice and work are appreciated.

Ok, so this is a straight trade union set-up. The langugae seems straight out of any other collective agreement in this sector. Big deal. It's not revolutionary and I suspect those who worked on the campaign are not revolutionists. I suspect it took 18 months because it was a weak shop, weak membership, lots of turn-over and, perhaps, some organizers who wanted to establish their union within the confines of what the membership wanted and could do.

So, for all the super revolutionists out there, what do you do when organizing an independent union with a weak membership? Walk away? Turn the shop over to another union?Do the best you can and try to eductae the new members in the principles of rank-and-file unionism.

Of course the problem is that once you establish a certain method of operations, of dealing with issues and grievances and waiving the right to strike, it become problematic as time progresses. I surely hope that this contract is not held up as model contract by IWW social service sector workers....if so, then it is a problem.

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thugarchist
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Dec 24 2007 15:42
syndicalist wrote:

Ok, so this is a straight trade union set-up. The langugae seems straight out of any other collective agreement in this sector. Big deal. It's not revolutionary and I suspect those who worked on the campaign are not revolutionists. I suspect it took 18 months because it was a weak shop, weak membership, lots of turn-over and, perhaps, some organizers who wanted to establish their union within the confines of what the membership wanted and could do.

So, for all the super revolutionists out there, what do you do when organizing an independent union with a weak membership? Walk away? Turn the shop over to another union?Do the best you can and try to eductae the new members in the principles of rank-and-file unionism.

Of course the problem is that once you establish a certain method of operations, of dealing with issues and grievances and waiving the right to strike, it become problematic as time progresses. I surely hope that this contract is not held up as model contract by IWW social service sector workers....if so, then it is a problem.

I don't use the term trade union anymore unless its an actual trade union, but I agree with you that its a standard kind of contract with the standard kind of crap in small social service industry typical model. My contract from district 65 was similar (although better as such things go).

While not a super-revolutionist, my answer would be predictable to you. I'd turn the shop over to whoever was dominant in the industry there.

pgh2a
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Dec 24 2007 17:28

syndicalist wrote:

Quote:
Ok, so this is a straight trade union set-up. The langugae seems straight out of any other collective agreement in this sector. Big deal. It's not revolutionary and I suspect those who worked on the campaign are not revolutionists. I suspect it took 18 months because it was a weak shop, weak membership, lots of turn-over and, perhaps, some organizers who wanted to establish their union within the confines of what the membership wanted and could do.

So, for all the super revolutionists out there, what do you do when organizing an independent union with a weak membership? Walk away? Turn the shop over to another union?Do the best you can and try to eductae the new members in the principles of rank-and-file unionism.

Of course the problem is that once you establish a certain method of operations, of dealing with issues and grievances and waiving the right to strike, it become problematic as time progresses. I surely hope that this contract is not held up as model contract by IWW social service sector workers....if so, then it is a problem.

Well put. The thing that we agree upon is that you just don't abandon a group of workers because they do not fit your idea of being revolutionary enough. Sometimes workers change during the struggle, sometimes not enough to suit our tastes. But I would rather have a union presence at a shop than not.

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Chilli Sauce
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Dec 24 2007 18:28
revol wrote:
but do I intend to go around 'organising' people

Revol, you do realize you belong to a political organization called "Organize!", right?

mikus
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Dec 25 2007 01:57
revol68 wrote:
ncwob wrote:
revol wrote:
but do I intend to go around 'organising' people

Revol, you do realize you belong to a political organization called "Organize!", right?

a) it's Organise! (note the lack of C, you prick!) b) it refers to organising struggle not simply organising for the sake of organising, which the IWW seem to have fallen into.

You mean "Z", genius?

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Chilli Sauce
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Dec 25 2007 02:46

oh, irony....

mikus
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Dec 25 2007 04:37

So you irish write Z instead of C when you're referring to letters? That's pretty weird man.

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Chilli Sauce
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Dec 25 2007 05:42
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Zed not C.

You mean "Z is Zed and not Zee," is that what you're trying to convey, Revol? Verbal communication really isn't your forte is it?

pgh2a
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Dec 25 2007 06:16

ORGA-NICE? Definately not revol.

petey
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Dec 25 2007 18:07

organ-ice? like getting cold-cocked?

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thugarchist
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Dec 25 2007 18:11
newyawka wrote:
organ-ice? like getting cold-cocked?

More like they steal your liver and sell it to fund their paper.

petey
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Dec 25 2007 18:13

damn

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OliverTwister
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Dec 25 2007 19:54
Dundee_United wrote:
As for what should be done about it - that is an internal matter, and shame on those for raising the issue first on libcom without raising it internally and trying to get the matter sorted out properly. Some would say there are political agendas at work there.

Well since i was the first one to raise the issue, i assume this is directed towards me.

This has been raised internally in the union many many times over the past 102 years. Even if I haven't raised it, i've raised a lot of things internally such as BIROC making bilateral relations with other organizations. How are we supposed to get the matter "sorted out properly" - though a referendum on the constitution, but that takes discussing the issue of whether we are in the business of "organizing" at all costs, or whether we have principles.

As Rata said, there are two political agendas at work here.

booeyschewy
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Dec 25 2007 23:38

Oliver, that is a real lame way to respond.

I think in the end, we can see that libcom isn't a good place to discuss these issues because of tools like revol and whatnot. These discussions need to happen but what good comes of it here? I recognize that I shouldn't have played a role in it either, and apologize. So sure it has to get raised, but if your goal is to get it dealt with, here didn't work out. Since your goal was frustrated, you should think about what would be the best method to do it. Revol playing cutsy graphic designer, yeah not so useful.

Also to quote rata as cashing out the struggle between reformists and class struggle is simplistic and distorting, the kind of wankerdom that marxists use with the whole petty-bourg. business. I'd say its more complex. Some people are reformists for real. Some people are revolutionaries, but think there's no contradictions. Some people are revolutionaries, but accept these because they had to deal with it and thought it better than to eliminate the shops all together. Then there's most of us who oppose this.

I think i'm right, but i'm not pompous enough to cash that out as being the "true class struggle line". There's nothing to gain from that sort of polemical narrow-minded thinking, and it's below you oliver. You're too smart, nice, and talented for that and you shouldn't emulate the internet hobbyists on this website.

i appreciate you pressing this issue, but do so with a plan, with the use of reason, and understanding. Otherwise you'll end up like revol.

Mick Black
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Dec 25 2007 23:51

Right, if anyone wants to take this topic to the IWW board I'd suggest posting an "all members" topic in the "Contracts and Labor Law" forum at http://www.iww.org/en/forum/391

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Dec 26 2007 02:05
revol68 wrote:
organising struggle

Organize! doesn't organize any struggles unless you count Revol's shit slinging contests on libcom.

OliverTwister wrote:
takes discussing the issue of whether we are in the business of "organizing" at all costs, or whether we have principles.

Oliver, do you honestly think you make a constructive contribution to this sort of discussion on here? Do you honestly think that your implication that the rest of are organizing (or rather, "organizing") in an unprincipled manner at all helps things? If so then you've got some fucked up perceptions my friend. If you're serious about sorting this stuff out then check that kind of bullshit, okay? And you could start by telling us what you've tried in your branch to work on this stuff, what has and hasn't worked. The ultraleft theory stuff is way less useful than that.