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View Diary: ACM: "The right of the workers to work, against the right of the workers to live." Mary Heaton Vorse (42 comments)

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  •  given the nature of the capitalist system (8+ / 0-)

    before the introduction of the social welfare state, the right to a job was literally the right to life. The current attack on the social welfare state is trying to reintroduce that notion; in fact, the claims of the UK gov't that the poor cannot earn more than those that are willing to work (as though the problem is a labour supply problem because the poor are lazy, drunk, and breed to much) using Bentham's principle of lesser eligibility (poor relief must be lower than the lowest of paid workers) is a revival of a similar argument. We need to remind people that these are not new, they have been used successfully before and that we know what they are playing at and that this must be fought. Demonisation of unions goes hand in hand with demonisation of the poor and disabled ... it is an attempt (and one that is successful at that) of pitting workers against each other to lower the income of the working class.

    "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

    by NY brit expat on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:06:31 PM PST

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    •  Yep, they want us poor and desperate and (6+ / 0-)

      without pride in ourselves and our work. That's the biggest problem with Unions, teaching workers to have pride in themselves and pride in their work, and solidarity with each other.  

      The level of degradation that I've seen here in Texas was almost unbelievable.  Could hardly believe it when I moved here from MN. My work takes me right into people's homes. We have poverty there, in MN, of course. But here they degrade the poor in ways that are hard to imagine in a civilized society.

      WE NEVER FORGET Our Labor Martyrs: a project to honor the men, women and children who lost their lives in Freedom's Cause. For Jan: USW Local Mourns Fallen Brother

      by JayRaye on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:21:26 PM PST

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      •  one important thing is the way that the (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JayRaye, annieli, radarlady, Dirtandiron

        poor are being treated, they concentrate on treating the poor as though they are in need of charity; benefits arising from the failures of the system to enable full employment and to provide income to stimulate demand for the goods and services of the private sector (and hence benefit the private sector) are treated as charity. As charity it becomes the donations of others as a gift or due to guilt; as a right to eat, keep a roof over your head, etc, that is solidarity and it is deserved. I do not know if I am making this clear ...  the difference between talking about the rights of the poor and unemployed and their being given charity out of the goodness of the hearts of those that give to charity is miles apart.

        "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

        by NY brit expat on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:26:50 PM PST

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        •  I understand, and I agree completely. (6+ / 0-)

          Here in Texas, they are treated with contempt. They barely have the right to walk down the street or sit in the park. It's hard to describe. And there are far fewer public spaces in TX compared with MN. People act like they own the sidewalk in front of their homes.

          Being poor is like a crime here, and yet, so many people are poor, possibly 40%, not sure. I've seen houses with open sewers, holes in the floor where rats can (and do) come in at night. And older children and young adults with teeth missing or rotting.

          This is Texas! One of our great right-to-work states.

          Michiganders should come and visit, we'll head down further into South Texas so they can see what lies in store for them.

          WE NEVER FORGET Our Labor Martyrs: a project to honor the men, women and children who lost their lives in Freedom's Cause. For Jan: USW Local Mourns Fallen Brother

          by JayRaye on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:41:40 PM PST

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