Thursday, June 21, 2018

Proposals for action to defend the children against the Trump regime.

Protest shuts ICE office in Portland Ore 6-21-18
Sean O'Torain

The Trump regime is exposing its vicious cruelty with its separation of children from their families, and of interning children and families. 

The mood of the majority of the country, in fact of the world, is against Trump's action. 

Sections of the capitalist class recognizing this mood are refusing to be associated with it. American Airlines, United Airlines are refusing to allow their planes to be used to transport the children. Even the Democratic Party leadership and even some of the Republicans are speaking out. 

Along with this Church groups, all sorts of groups and individuals, are speaking out and taking action. 

What is staggering is that the union leaderships are as usual mute. One individual flight attendant has announced that he would no longer work flights on which children were being transported. That is he announced individual strike action. He has withdrawn his labor. He is an example to be followed.

There are 14 million members in the US trade unions. There are thousands of union locals and labor councils. In Chicago for example there are 320 union locals and half a million workers affiliated to the Chicago federation of Labor. There are 800,000 members affiliated to the Los Angeles Federation of Labor. All the major cities in the Us have such sleeping giants. A gigantic organizational union structure exists. And in sectors of the economy which are vital, transport, utilities, communications etc. This structure should be moved into action and should provide the spine for the movement to defend the children and the families. 

The union leaders will not take the lead to do this. In fact they are opposed to such action. They are still trying to get over the fright they got when the teachers and education workers in West Virginia and a number of states pushed them aside built a new leadership from below organized strike action and made gains. They will do all they can top stop the union movement being mobilized on this issue. 

This Blog wishes to make the following appeal. 

*All who are members of unions reach out to fellow members of your local, or your labor council, or whatever union body of which you are a member. Seek to get their support to call an emergency meeting of your union body. If, as will most likely be the case, the union leadership will refuse to call such a meeting or allow the union facilities to be used to call a meeting. You can go to the union hall and demand it be opened and if it is not, hold the meeting at the door step. And call the press and use the social media to spread the word that you are acting but the union leadership is trying to stop your action. 

*At these meetings propose that the unions with members in transport, in the social services in the prisons etc. which have members carrying out the cruel policies of the Trump regime refuse to do so and withdraw their labor. That is, take strike action. And on doing so call mass meetings and rallies and appeal to non union forces to attend these. In other words, seek to mobilize the union rank and file to take control of their organizations and give leadership. If this is done the union movement will be transformed. It will be strengthened to where it can take up other issues, wages, benefits, work rates, inequality, racism, sexism etc. 

*All left organizations should take action along these lines. Turn their resources to the unions rank and file. Every member who is a union member should take this action. Every member who has a friend a relative an acquaintance who is a union member discuss with these people and ask them to take action. When your UPS man arrives, when you visit the post office, when you go to catch a bus or a train or a plane you are meeting with union members. Discuss with them appeal to them. All left organizations should now be getting out the word and spreading this message and building the movement to defend the children and the families. 

* US society is not some right wing cesspool. It can appear to be so because Trump has managed partly by accident and partly because of the role of the Democrats and the refusal to lead of the trade union leaders to get into power. It can appear so because he has mobilized the most backward layers in society. But the real balance of forces the real consciousness is not reflected in this.  Look at the millions on the women's marches, the movements against gun violence, against police violence, against racism and sexism, the recent strikes of teachers and education workers led by new leaderships from below and which gained victories. See also how ABC had to drop Roseanne Barr in spite of the millions the show was bringing in. Why? Because they saw that the mood was against her dirty racism. And look how Starbucks was forced to close all their stores for a day after one of its managers called the cops to arrest two African American customers. And as mentioned above, how Airlines are refusing to allow their planes to transport the children.

Trump and his backers, the big capitalist forces that are allowing him to stay in power because he is cutting their taxes, and is deregulating, are making a bad mistake. There is the saying. Sometimes when there is no mass combative working class  force in society that "the revolution needs the whip of the counter revolution". Trump and his capitalist backers are the whip of the counter revolution. they are badly mistaking the real class balance of forces, the enormous increase in the size of he working class, the enormous increase in the diversity of the working class, the enormous increase in women now in the paid workforce. They will pay a price. It is up to those of us who are in unions and and who can reach out to people in unions to organize and push the rank and file of the union movement take action, take over their organizations, push aside the existing leadership and lead the movement against the cruelty of the Trump regime and of capitalism in general.  

The movements from below, in particular the response to recent brutal assaults on immigrant families and their children, are forcing some sections of the US ruling class to act. Are beginning to force some splits and differences to open up withing the US ruling class. This is a positive thing but we must act on it.

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