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Working Class

48 Years After The Military Coup, Argentinians Take To The Streets

This Sunday, March 24, tens of thousands of people filled the streets of Buenos Aires and Argentina’s biggest cities to demand “memory, truth, and justice” for the victims of state violence. This annual day of action is held in remembrance of the 30,000 people who were disappeared, murdered, or tortured during the military dictatorship of 1976 to 1983, whose atrocities are most recognizably embodied in the figure of Jorge Rafael Videla, the leader of the military junta that seized control of the government.

Dan Osborn Challenges Nebraska’s Political Establishment

Recent studies of lawmakers in the United States have found that less than 2% of those serving on Capitol Hill held blue-collar jobs before they were elected. That percentage drops even further among the nearly 7,300 state legislators across all 50 states, according to researchers at Duke University and Loyola University Chicago, who found that only 81 of those legislators were previously employed in working-class jobs. Dan Osborn, a 48-year-old building trades worker, is a rare example of a candidate working to increase those numbers.

Argentinian Working People Fight Milei Government With A General Strike

More than 1.5 million people took part in a general strike in Argentina on January 24 against a new president and his aggressive anti-union “reforms.” Self-described “liberal-libertarian” Javier Milei, who won the November 22 presidential elections, is an economist who became popular as a panelist on a TV show. He advocated for ending the “privileges” of the “casta”—defined as corrupt politicians and social and union leaders taking advantage of “good people.” With a new party, Freedom Advances (La Libertad Avanza), Milei won the votes of a range of people, from working-class people disappointed and angry with the incumbent Peronist government to the middle and ruling classes opposed to state intervention in the economy and income distribution.

The 2023 UAW Strike: A Turning Point In Labor History?

How transformative was the strike that the United Auto Workers concluded in November 2023, when it shut down factories at Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis, which now incorporates Chrysler? The UAW has been in existence for nearly 90 years, during which three contests with capital have defined the character of the union and–because of its vanguard role–the expectations and standards for millions of other workers. Should we add last Fall’s brilliantly led and highly successful “stand-up” strike to that list? The great sit-down strikes of 1937 founded the UAW and ensured that, for more than a decade, shop militancy and leftwing politics would define a union representing upwards of a million workers in America’s most important industry.

Building Cleaners Rally For Fair Wages And Life-Saving Benefits

Just this year, we’ve seen UPS Teamsters secure a historic $30 billion new contract that abolishes tiers and substantially raises wages. We’ve seen the UAW successfully strike for contracts that boost pay, protect benefits, and crystallize the prospect of a green auto industry. Now, building cleaners across the country are next up to negotiate equitable deals and notch new victories for a labor movement confronting an uncertain future. On the line? Their ability to keep living and working in their home cities with ease and dignity. All told, contracts covering more than 134,000 SEIU cleaners nationwide are up for renegotiation over the next year with different SEIU locals, over half of whom belong to 32BJ SEIU locals on the east coast.

APEC Summit In San Francisco Met With Mass Protests

10,000 people took to the streets on Sunday, November 12 to protest the start of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders Meetings taking place in San Francisco this week. The APEC summit will run from November 11 to 17. The protest took place following a 1,000-person APEC counter-summit on November 11. The mobilizations have been organized by the No to APEC Coalition, which represents almost 150 organizations across the United States. “APEC is the epitome of all that is wicked and corrupt in our society today,” said Simon Ma, a family doctor and member of the anti-imperialist Korean-American organization Nodutdol. He described APEC as a “cabal of billionaires and politicians scheming behind closed doors, trying to come up with new and innovative ways to further exploit the working class of our planet.”

Far Right Imposed Shutdown Represents Deeper Crises

For the fourth time in ten years, the government is about to shut down ( prior to the 2013 shutdown, the last shutdown was in 1996). This shutdown, if it isn’t averted through last-minute maneuvering, would mean that roughly four million government employees — including police officers and the military —  would have their paychecks delayed, be furloughed, or otherwise impacted. The chaotic process of trying to keep the government open reveals, again, the deeply undemocratic nature of the U.S. regime. That a small sector of the far-right, elected by a tiny segment of the U.S. population, can hold necessary social programs hostage and demand new cuts in order to prevent an incredibly disruptive government shutdown is a sign that the U.S. government doesn’t represent the masses.

As A Working Class-Led Global Movement Rises, Elites Are Panicking

Around the world, a major organizing effort is underway, led by civil society and unions with the International People's Assembly, to build a working class movement for alternative systems that address the many crises we face. A series of regional conferences called the Dilemmas of Humanity are taking place in preparation for an international conference in South Africa in mid October. Clearing the FOG speaks with Eugene Puryear of BreakThrough News about the recent meeting in Atlanta, which is part of this process. Puryear speaks about the significance of the Stop Cop City movement and the necessity of leadership coming from frontline communities in the South. He also talks about the threat of nuclear war and the growing state repression of activists and journalists who dare to challenge the wealthy class.

Canadian Workers, The Social-Ecological Crisis and Alternatives

As workers, we are today confronted with the challenge of defending what we have and making gains in the face of an ever-expanding and relentless employer offensive. The employers’ drive to increase productivity and profits – central to capitalism everywhere – demands that we accept job loss and insecurity, concessions, new forms of speedup, and expanded management control in the workplace. More of us are forced to work in precarious forms of employment, making ourselves ‘flexible’ without access to unemployment and other social benefits or hope of a decent pension.

How The Right Hijack Class Analysis

The alt-right sometimes uses sneaky methods to promote their ideas without directly showing their extremist views. For example, people like Jordan Peterson may talk about controversial topics in a way that sounds academic and respectable. They might use coded language to appeal to certain groups without openly expressing extreme beliefs. They focus on divisive issues like gender pronouns and political correctness to get attention and draw people in. Some of them might act like they are being attacked or silenced, so they seem like defenders of free speech. They may also talk to or associate with groups linked to the alt-right, even if they don’t openly support extremist ideas.

‘A New Form Of Colonization’: Argentinian Workers Confront The IMF

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank have a long history of plunging Global South nations into unsustainable cycles of debt. For Argentina, this process has been ongoing for decades, and is now reaching a breaking point. Since 2015, the Argentine peso has lost 80% of its value against the US dollar, leading to a cost of living crisis affecting a wide swath of society. The economic shock of the pandemic and the latest $44 billion IMF loan package delivered in 2022 have only made matters worse. In the second half of 2020, more than 40% of Argentinians were in poverty.

Sandinistas Speak: Nicaraguans Defend Their Revolution

Friday, June 30, WTF returned to Managua, Nicaragua to do follow-up study of Caribbean Coast government funded infrastructure projects and to celebrate the 44th Anniversary of the Sandinista Revolution on July 19. While on assignment, each week we will share with you segments of the documentary Nicaragua Against Empire. The film journals our March 2021 Sanctions Kill / Friends of the ATC, Nicaragua delegation. In this episode, you hear directly from working-class Nicaraguans who support their socialist government. You also hear their thoughts about U.S. sanctions and regime change. These are perspectives rarely shared in mainstream media.

The Unions And Workers Supporting Cop City Protestors

Vincent Quiles, a 28-year-old father and union organizer in Philadelphia, is part of a fledgling labor effort to support the months-long protests against construction of the notorious Atlanta Public Safety Training Center, popularly known as “Cop City.” For Quiles, this also means speaking out against his former employer: Home Depot. When he was fired from a Home Depot store in northeastern Philadelphia in February, Quiles was already struggling to support his toddler son on his salary, which he says never felt like enough, given the meager benefits. He says he was forced to lean on his “very strong support system.”

In The Factories There Is Wealth, But There Is No Life

In late 2022, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) released a fascinating report entitled Working Time and Work-Life Balance Around the World, in large part encouraged by a slew of initiatives across India to extend the workday. The report accumulated global data on the time spent at work in 2019, before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The ILO found that ‘approximately one third of the global workforce (35.4 percent) worked more than 48 hours per week’ and ‘one fifth of global employment (20.3 percent) consists of short (or part-time) hours of work of less than 35 hours per week’, such as gig work.

A Worldwide Anti-Imperialist Left Is Needed

Capital organises globally yet workers do not. As the US-led NATO powers escalate the Ukraine conflict into a new world war, this imbalance is becoming intolerable. This paper presents the case for a worldwide anti-imperialist Left, representing ordinary people committed to a just and peaceful multipolar world order. This will serve both the national interest of every country, and the general interest of humanity. We base our case on an historical assessment of the last such organization, the Communist International or Comintern for short, founded in 1919 and dissolved in 1943.
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