Solidarity with workers

Everything is produced by the workers, and the minute they try to get something by their unions they meet all the opposition that can be mustered by those who now get what they produce.               ~ Harry Bridges

 

The Senate is currently conducting a farcical SCOTUS confirmation hearing (during a pandemic, while several Senators are COVID-positive) for a woman who will do the bidding of the powerful elite: crush the working class. The Republicans are seeing the culmination of their decades-long plan to stack the courts with anti-worker judges who will forever change the face of this country. The Dem party pretends to resist but they are equally comfortable with this outcome because they aren’t either jobless or working 2-3 jobs to scrape by, nor are the Dem elites starving, facing eviction, saddled with astronomical medical debt, or living in frontline communities as the climate crisis worsens. This latest SCOTUS judge will consolidate their wealth and power. All’s well.

It’s way past time we rise up.

Workers Unite

Thinking about all the workers out there struggling to pay rent, buy food, keep their lives going. Thinking about one of my sons who is struggling to find a job in this economy and who may very well be moving back home in the near future.  He’s grateful he has a place to land if it comes to that, but it shouldn’t come to that. Not for him and not for other young people facing a bleak future. They should be able to live their lives on their own terms.

This is a disgrace and we must do better. Much better.

Centuries in the making

March 1964 photo by Marion S. Trikosko (donated to public domain)

I believe that there will ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those that do the oppressing. I believe that there will be a clash between those who want freedom, justice and equality for everyone and those who want to continue the systems of exploitation.  — Malcolm X

People before property

              Denver from my front yard.             May 27, 2020.

Property is intended to serve life, and no matter how much we surround it with rights and respect, it has no personal being. It is part of the earth man walks on. It is not man.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Chipping away

Bushtit , March 11, 2019.

As I work chapter-by-chapter to revise my manuscript, my task feels similar to that of this Bushtit. We both take aim and then chip away at what’s there. The difference is, this feathered friend gets a tasty treat for her troubles while my satisfaction comes from page count.

Maybe I should print out a page or two, and see how they taste . . .

Solidarity, old dude!

Wildebeest made this paper mache sculpture in elementary school and it sat in our storage room for years. I finally cleaned out said storage room this summer and took a photo before disposing of the body. I texted the photo to Wildebeest.

Me: Cleaning out storage room. Saying goodbye to your pirate!
Wildebeest: That’s just horrifying.
Me: The pirate? Or saying goodbye?
Wildebeest: The pirate. Get rid of it ASAP.

Now I’m kinda wishing the sad, old pirate was around to commiserate. I think he’d understand.

Solidarity

Just stuck this sign in our front yard.muslim-solidarity

A small gesture on this dark day but an important one, I believe. There’s a Muslim family up the street and my stomach hurts thinking about how they’re feeling right now.

 

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America is NOT Broke by Michael Moore

 
                

Micheal Moore went to Madison, Wisconsin, to speak to the courageous
people who refuse to budge in the face of greed and lies.

Here is the transcript. If you read nothing else today, please read this.

Here’s an excerpt:
"Let me say that again. 400 obscenely rich people, most of whom benefited in some way from the multi-trillion dollar taxpayer "bailout" of 2008, now have more loot, stock and property than the assets of 155 million Americans combined. If you can’t bring yourself to call that a financial coup d’état, then you are simply not being honest about what you know in your heart to be true."
The powers-that-be pit us against each other, relying on cultural and social issues (gays, guns, and god)
to fracture what should be a united front against the nauseating greed of the upper class.

So, while moneyed people around the country bemoan the "greed" of public employees
fighting for their right to collective bargaining, these courageous people in Wisconsin stand strong.
We ALL owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.

As Michael Moore says:
"Never forget, as long as that Constitution of ours still stands, it’s one person, one vote, and it’s the thing the rich hate most about America — because even though they seem to hold all the money and all the cards, they begrudgingly know this one unshakeable basic fact: There are more of us than there are of them!"

Here’s a YouTube video of him in Wisconsin on March 5.
The opening is especially inspiring because of the emotions expressed by Moore and the protesters,
but also because he reveals this powerful, spot-on piece was written in a couple hours at the end of a very long day:

 
We need heroes now more than ever, and I salute Wisconsin workers for drawing the line in the sand!
           

On Wisconsin!

        

Yesterday I blogged about my preparations for
the Denver rally held in support of Wisconsin workers.

Today I am back with a full report.

The good news: the weather was beautiful and lots of sane people showed up.

The bad news: a bunch of ill-informed, resentful people also made an appearance
(one person even self-identifying as an extremist):

Here’s the very first photo I took from the lower steps (apparently at the exact moment
everyone’s arms got tired and they lowered their signs):

I got there a couple minutes late and was on the outer fringes of main crowd and speeches, 
but my little sign was an immediate hit:

(I was interviewed by Jonathan Brown of NPR/CPR
but have not tracked down his report so don’t know if I made the cut.)

However, not everyone understood by my sign that I supported workers and their
right to collective bargaining.  When I walked silently past the anti-union crowd on my
way out, one man said about my sign, "That’s a good one."  I was stunned until
I looked at my photos later on and saw this:

(And yes, those are Colorado State Patrol officers.
They formed a line between the groups, appearing simultaneously bored and tense).

Here’s a sampling of the support and goodwill flowing from Colorado to Wisconsin
(and other states preparing for their own union-busting assaults) . . .

      

          
  

      

And, perhaps the day’s most compelling argument:

It was a good day and I’m so glad I rallied.
Zippy joined me, and we ran into other friends (Happy Birthday again, Ron!)

This fight is for the heart and soul of workers’ rights,
and I hope the brave people in Wisconsin don’t back down 
in the face of Governor Walker’s ideological war on unions.
(Lest there be any doubt this stand-off has nothing to do with budget deficits and everything to do
with ideology, follow the story regarding billionaire Tea Party-backer David Koch and Gov Walker).

Also, please remember: The unions early-on accepted the wage and benefits reductions; 
they are only demanding their right to collective bargaining.

Wisconsin, we are with you!
All good thoughts headed your way . . . 

              

In Solidarity with Wisconsin Workers

               

I’m headed out the door for the Denver rally in solidarity with 
the awesome people of Wisconsin.

I was born and raised in Wisconsin,
and have never been more proud of my roots.

This morning I put on my 30-year-old Bucky Badger hoodie
and made a sign:


Oops.
I don’t know what I was thinking.
Just in case you don’t want to hold a mirror up to your screen in order to decipher my sign:

I’m taking my camera and hope to capture much great signage.

Courage

                   

I salute the people of Egypt.

Your courage is inspirational
and your resolve is awe-inspiring.

You did PREVAIL.


                                                         Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images