life with sticks in one's head

Where to start

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After arriving near the end of the weekly Shoe meeting (Frack!), I attended tonight’s event, which was excellent. Essentially, it was a couple of socialist professors from the CUNY system talking about the rise of the right — both in the US and in Europe, about the decay/demoralization of the left, and about where anti-capitalists should go from here. Quite interestingly, the far right in Europe, particularly in Italy, relies not on an organized, mobilized population, but on passivity and general acceptance of its “positions” (racism, xenophobia being paramount). In the US, the far right tea party has been used by the right to mobilize voters, but its positions, particularly on shutting down government and ending immigration, are anathema to the capitalist class, who depend on both the state and the cheap, flexible labor from immigration to make their billions. Indeed, it is they who are trying to reign in the tea party members of Congress.

So where do we go from here? Rebuilding a working class movement, in whatever tiny steps we can. Supporting every strike, every rank and file action, without ever feeling the need to deal with the official labor leaders, who are deeply implicated in the weakening of their own movement through their cozy and hapless relationship with the Democratic party, a party that embraces neoliberalism and global capitalism. Rebuilding, frustratingly slowly of course, a sense of working class consciousness, of solidarity. And, of course, recognizing wholly justified working class anger, saluting it, and allowing it to take a more radical course than union leaders (Gompersians all) would like.

It was hardly an idealistic evening. But there was/is something inspiring about realizing that to win the war, which seems so unwinnable, you must fight every teeny tiny battle, and engaging in those teeny tiny battles is the  most important thing you can possibly do.


Written by sticksinthehead

18 April 2011 at 12:42 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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