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Brigid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 05:23 PM
Original message
From Madison to Longview:
What do you think finally set off the long-overdue labor unrest we have been seeing this year? After all, those of us who actually work for a living have been taking it on the chin for the past 30 years or more.
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nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 05:44 PM
Response to Original message
1. When you have no more to lose
And it's been a process. This is just the beginning AGAIN.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 05:45 PM
Response to Original message
2. kicking for answers
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emilyg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 05:55 PM
Response to Original message
3. Not being able to
feed your family will do it.
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 06:39 PM
Response to Original message
4. I think that it may have something to do with the great hope we felt
at President Obama's election in 2008 and then the disappointment when he could not get the congress to do any of the things we wanted. The frustration triggered the action. Enough is enough. I hope this continues - it is our only way to get anything done.
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socialist_n_TN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
5. Actually there's several good answers here, IMO
I think that the election of Obama was the last gasp of the "reformist" element. We thought that Obama would work for US within the system and we wouldn't have to resort to this type of militant action. When he didn't because he was unwilling or unable or some combination of the two, a lot of people (and more every day) are seeing the impotence of the reformist method of fighting back. Ergo, we have these types of actions.

BTW, I wouldn't put Wisconsin in the same category as the Longview situation. Maybe it was timing, but Wisconsin lost a BIG chance to actually DO something to stop Scott Walker when it put all of it's eggs in the reformist basket with the recalls. That reformist decision dissipated the energy in Wisconsin and resulted in a LOSS for the working class. I guess you could possibly consider THAT the last gasp of the reformist attitude and not the election of Obama.

We're going to have to get militant and, yes, ILLEGAL in methods in order to have an ACTUAL effect in the class war. That doesn't necessarily mean we have to become violent, but we can't let arrest stop us.
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stevedeshazer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-11-11 07:29 PM
Response to Original message
6. As someone who grew up near Longview, I think I might be able to provide some insight.
I was raised about 20 miles from there in the Oregon Panhandle.

My oldest living relative lives there, and I still visit Longview about twice a week in the course of my job.

Longview was a planned lumber town. It didn't exist until 1921.

Union labor has controlled that town since the beginning. When I was a kid in the sixties, that place was booming. Lumber mills, paper mills, stevedoring, and an aluminum plant.

You could get a good paying union job right out of high school and make enough to support your family, buy a house, raise your kids, the works.

Plus, Longview is an hour from the beach and an hour from the mountains and right on the confluence of three rivers with great fishing.

Since the late seventies, Longview has deteriorated enormously. The aluminum plant and others have since closed. Kids there now can't wait to leave. There is no hope, and no future for them. Meth and alcohol and despair now rule.

These longshoremen are their dads and grandpas. They are pissed, because this new grain terminal was expected to put a little bit of life into town. Instead, they got jerked around.

I'm their age, and though I'm not a longshoreman, I know many of them and their families. They are just regular blue-collar workers who have finally had just about fucking enough. And I support them. For their union jobs are all that is left from turning southwest Washington and northwest Oregon into the new rust belt.
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