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View Diary: Occupy Calls for a Global General Strike on May 1, International Workers' Day. (212 comments)

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  •  Do you know how much groundwork MLK did? (3+ / 0-)
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    jpmassar, JamesGG, peregrinus

    If you did, you wouldn't be comparing OWS with the SCLC.  Some of us have been around and seen how effective organizing works and how actual general strikes work.

    Among other things, if you are trying to create a democratic movement, you have to act democratically -- which means the grass roots creating the general strike, not some web site.

    •  Yeah, I DO, You DO NOT (3+ / 0-)
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      jpmassar, Evolutionary, ladyjames

      Because MLK Jr. was not the only black person fighting for civil rights. Or the only white one. I cannot compare the SCLC because that was run like a hierarchical political entity training soldiers against the establishment. OWS is not so rigid in its structure.

      Guess what: OWS is as democratic as it gets; ever heard of a general assembly? Guess not. Guess everyone should wait until we all agree on everything ever before we act.

      (eyeroll)

      •  SCLC was NOT hierarchical (1+ / 0-)
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        jpmassar

        That's the basic history you seem to be missing and the basic insight you don't get about OWS.

        Having a website and declaring that 1 billion people should go on strike on May 1st -- that's hierarchical no matter how ignorantly the people pushing this think they aren't.

        Trying to corral 5,000 - 10,000 churches, NAACP branches, student associations, union locals, Urban League branches, National Association of Negro Women groups, adult branches of the black fraternities and sororities into agreeing on a date and plan for a non-violent action -- that is democratic and non-hierarchical.

        The idea of a few people declaring global general strike without even being union members is frankly laughable from the perspective of what works in creating social change.

        Yeah good luck with that.  

        I wonder how many plumbers, carpenters, cement pourers, construction workers, nurses, medical residents, teachers, secretaries, bus drivers, cashiers, legal aid lawyers, etc., etc., are going to go on strike May 1st because "ad busters" has declared a global general strike.

        ROFLMAO!

        •  Yes, It Was (1+ / 0-)
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          jpmassar

          http://www.newyorker.com/...

          Something for you to chew on.

          And maybe many of those people will go on strike; they're showing up to OWS rallies and benefit from economic equality.

          But you know some liberal website said it so fuck you, or something.

        •  I am one of those workers. I will join a General (4+ / 0-)

          Strike on May 1.  I will encourage my fellow workers to do the same.  I am also a member of a Union, and we are already talking about it.  "Just one website" will become a hundred thousand of them.  It has to start somewhere.  You sound a lot like you would be happy to throttle it in its infancy.  You are not helping, you are hindering.

          If you have nothing to contribute to this movement, then get out of the way, because we will be 'moving' without you.  The comment above that says that OWS is the base of the Democratic Party - isn't just some bullshit.  I and most of my Occupy friends (and I have been to several), are very liberal, predominately Democrat, and angry as hell.  It's more than just young people.  I see seniors all the time.  We are all angry that our Constitution is being trampled on.  We are all angry that Corporations are ruling our country.  We've had it.  I am not alone.

          At the fast pace of today's society, three months is an Eon.  Calling for a General Strike might not get every worker out there to do it - some have no choice but to work, or starve - because they would lose their job.  Those of us that can get away with it will do it.  We don't need to 'corral' anyone.  All we need to do is spread the word.  Occupy has already had an enormous, visible effect on our world.  We are still only just getting started.  It's been four months.  Look around you.  No politician is ignoring it now.  Not one.

          So stay home, and keep taking it in the backside.  No one is forcing you to comply.  

          #OccupyOMC - "We have a permit, its called The Constitution".

          by Evolutionary on Mon Jan 30, 2012 at 01:04:11 PM PST

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          •  maybe it was a bit much (3+ / 0-)
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            Evolutionary, ladyjames, jpmassar

            to say it is the base as if it is an interest group since it seems to sweeping, but what are the seniors going to do: vote for romney and paul ryan's budget? Yeah, I'm sure.

            What about the poor and the unemployed, the ripped off, and the ethnic? I'm not sure when the Republicans cared for their vote that would be news to me. Everyone wants the Democratic party to be energized, and for the people to make the change they believe in and blah blah blah, but all of the sudden people take action and we have to put on the brakes I mean what is going on?!

        •  There aren't union members involved in Occupy? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jpmassar

          Have you not been paying attention?

          There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Mon Jan 30, 2012 at 10:12:30 PM PST

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          •   (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jpmassar

            Unions have democratic procedures -- things like "strike votes."  In fact the strike vote is the single most momentous kind of decision a union makes and is taken very seriously.

            No where else in the world would someone equate union members participation in a movement that calls for a general strike to "unions calling for a general strike."

            •  To be clear, I was refering to the part where you (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              jpmassar

              said:

              he idea of a few people declaring global general strike without even being union members is frankly laughable from the perspective of what works in creating social change.

              I probably should have just quoted it and said that, yes, there definitely were union members involved.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Tue Jan 31, 2012 at 06:59:58 AM PST

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    •  Some of us have been around too long (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Evolutionary, ladyjames

      and apply lessons from the past that may or may not still be the most applicable to today's world.

      Just ask the Congresscritters about "web sites" and SOPA and PIPA.

    •  That's an important point to make. (2+ / 0-)
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      jpmassar, HamdenRice

      If Dr. King's nonviolent direct action wing of the civil rights movement was nothing else, it was incredibly organized—with clear leadership and a strong structure in place, capable of long-term strategizing and engagement with the process of change on multiple levels.

      Additionally, every time they took a nonviolent direct action, whether it was a boycott, a strike, a sit-in, or a demonstration, the action was very carefully refined, strategized, and planned—to make it as specific, targeted, and likely to be effective as possible.

      They also had people so totally committed to the cause that they would (and often did) put their safety and their lives on the line for it, knowing they were going to go up against violent resistance from police and citizenry on a level that would make what Occupy has faced thus far look rather tame in comparison.

      Organizationally and conceptually, from what I've seen, Occupy seems more in line with the spirit of the (much less effective) anti-war and revolutionary movements of the '60s than it does with the civil rights movement.

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Mon Jan 30, 2012 at 11:46:28 AM PST

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      •  You do understand you are comparing (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JamesGG, Evolutionary, ladyjames

        a decade long movement with a three-month year old movement, right?

        I have no idea, but I suspect Dr. King learned some lessons from early mistakes and was not always as organized as his group became.

        •  Of course. Occupy is still in its infancy. (2+ / 0-)
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          HamdenRice, jpmassar

          But the thing that worries me here that the Occupy movement doesn't seem to have learned from what worked and didn't work for social movements throughout the nation's history, in terms of getting the support of the public at large—and from what I've seen, their structure and processes seem more a hindrance than a help to me in that regard.

          My personal opinion is that there needs to be a much larger strategic vision for the 99% movement, which I envision as a "movement of movements" with Occupy's nonviolent direct actions as only a single tactical part of the overall whole. This larger whole would include much more coordination, plans for communication with the general public and for engagement (whether confrontational or cooperative) with the various power structures in the country, and multiple movement structures that could galvanize and mobilize various populations within the larger public.

          But at the moment, I'm in no position to realize that... and my dissertation advisor would disown me if I took the time to try :-)

          "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

          by JamesGG on Mon Jan 30, 2012 at 12:05:43 PM PST

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