I saw a story about the prices of used cars being at an all time high. I have noticed the value of houses is at a low with the number of foreclosures being at an all time high. This all leads me to believe the idea that more and more people are buying used cars as their new abode, thus, driving the prices up. While I am making light of our economic woes I don’t find the economic class war we are in to be a laughing matter. I talked about this war in my last post. This time I want to address how we have been guilty of surrendering to our oppressors. We have put our own shackles on and co-operated with to those who want to destroy the working class people of this country.
We have become our own worst enemy and are doomed to lose the class war unless we change our ways. When I worked in the private sector I marched with over 100,000 other workers to send Pres. Reagan a message. The message was that workers were not going to stand for him breaking PATCO’s union by firing striking air traffic controllers. Where was the follow-up message to Reagan after that march? Fellow USWA members voted for Reagan when he ran for a second term as president. They were NRA members who worried the democrats were going to take their guns. They were also Christian men who wanted to tell women what they could do with their bodies. They were people who claimed republicans represented their “family values.” It’s hard to have family values when your plant closes and you don’t have an income to provide for your family. I knew and still know working class people who either don’t vote or vote against their own economic interests. I know lots of people who think voting doesn’t matter. I don’t think you can still feel that way after looking at the current crop of conservative governors who are going after working class public sector workers.
Add to that mix, bad trade deals that helped send jobs to sweatshops overseas. Our unions did us no good-by having us vote for a candidate for president with a D after his name instead of an R. He was still economically conservative and helped pass the Republican trade bills that destroyed American industrial jobs. These trade bills have not been stopped and instead have expanded to more and more countries. Where is a strong third-party like a labor party?
Other people who are the working class’s worst enemies are private sector workers who don’t support their public sector brother and sister workers. I spent over 28 years in the private sector and 25 of them were working under concessionary contracts that I had voted against. My fellow workers had told the bosses that we were over paid and that led to the series of give away contracts. They told the owners they were over paid by voting yes on a contract that set up a second tier for the next crop of workers hired. That vote essentially said, ” you should pay future workers less money for doing the same job we are doing.” Management, of course, then set about finding reasons to fire older workers and replace them with younger ones who were going to work for less. After all, the older workers were at the age where they were starting to have some health care problems that could be costly to the company. Once you open that concessionary door, it never closes. So of course, it became one give away contract after another until the doors closed for good. Many private sector workers are guilty of not voting, voting for conservatives and rolling over for every concession without putting up a fight. Today, this beaten up private sector wants to punish public sector workers like they punished themselves. I’ve seen working class private sector workers angry because public sector workers are fighting back against legislative bills that want to weaken public sector contracts.
Recently, I heard about a woman who is a public school employee who is for Ohio’s SB 5 that weakens public sector union negotiations. How damn dumb does she have to be? I note this is a woman who a few years ago went to the hospital with stomach pains. A few hours later she delivered a baby without ever realizing she was pregnant. She’s a perfect example of someone who is knitting with only one needle.
I remember watching the first President Bush in a debate and laughed at a comment he made. He said, that something like 20 or 30% of people who work in public schools had their kids in private schools. I though that such a huge percentage was ridiculous as that would make public school workers hypocrites who were cutting their own throats. Now I can tell you that after working in the public school sector for over a decade that Pres. George H. Bush was right on. Those who have their kids in private school while they pick up a check from public schools should be ashamed of themselves. They are just as dumb as a worker at a Chevrolet plant who drives a Ford and vice versa. Auto workers gets a discount on the cars of the manufacturer they work for. You shouldn’t even need a discount to buy the brand you work for. For goodness sakes workers have a little pride and loyalty.
Workers of course also have been guilty for years of buying foreign products over ones made in the USA. Cheaper foreign products are not really less costly when their cost is your fellow workers livelihood. I’ve talked about the following until I’m blue in the face but will address it until I am black in the face. Why in the world do you my fellow workers shop at places like WalMart and Sam’s Club? The family that owns them is anti-union, anti-environment, anti-human rights and is one of the biggest corporate welfare queens on the planet. Things are actually more expensive at these stores because of the hidden cost of tax payers subsidies. These stores are on the wrong side of every human rights issue and you condone that every time you spend a penny in them. What will it take for the working class to realize they are doing business with their enemies when they patronize these stores? Do they actually have to gang rape your Grandmother and steal her purse before you realize you’re dealing with the Devil?
It’s not only what we do to win the class war but also what we don’t do. Keeping you wallet closed or buying from those who respect the working class is the best weapon in our arsenal. Voting on contracts that let others work next to you make less than you is the first nail in your coffin. Is gas, milk or bread any cheaper for those you feel can work for less? If you have surrendered without a fight don’t expect others to do the same. Their fight is your fight as we working class are all in it together. This is a class war not a civil war and I’m hoping for a quick victory so my children won’t have to fight it. Soldier on brothers and sisters.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trump got it right when he said, “Abandon candidates that abandoned labor.”
Carbon leaf: The War Was in Color
We have met the enemy and he is us. ~ Pogo