“On Wisconsin”

There is a phrase heard more and more lately.  “The Democratic Party is where social movements go to die.  It is the grave yard of social movements. ”  Bruce Dixon used it at blackagendareport.com  And Bob Fitch who wrote the 2006 book “Solidarity for Sale” makes a similar remark about reforming unions from within.   He calls this attempt at reform “the roach motel syndrome”.   “The leftists go in but they don’t come out.”  When you enter these roach motels, you encounter bosses just like you do in the workplace.  You encounter union bosses and mob bosses.  The beauty of the Occupy movement and the original occupation in Wisconsin was the lack of bosses.  But eventually some bosses took over in Wisconsin and we ended up with what cultural critic Stuart Hall calls “authoritarian populism” winning over limp noodle party politics.  (More on this in “‘Authoritarian Populism’ and the Wisconsin Recall by Connor Donegan).  Right wingers came across as brats and beer freedom fighters and the left came off as near beer party poopers. Continue reading

Will Madison Be Our Cairo?

You won’t find it on its front page section “Protests for Democracy”, but CNN is reporting that 15 more school districts will close today [#104] as teachers make their way to Madison, WI to join the protest against Gov. Walker’s anti union bill. Wisconsin teachers call in sick

At least 15 school systems in Wisconsin canceled Thursday’s classes because teachers and other public employees will continue protests at the state Capitol over a bill that would strip them of most of their collective bargaining rights and increase their contributions for benefits.

From MSNBC we get a report noting some Green Bay Packers weighing in: Madison protests

“As a publicly owned team we wouldn’t have been able to win the Super Bowl without the support of our fans,” reads a statement signed by seven current and former players. “It is the same dedication of our public workers every day that makes Wisconsin run. They are the teachers, nurses and child care workers who take care of us and our families. But now in an unprecedented political attack Governor Walker is trying to take away their right to have a voice and bargain at work.”

I heard a trucker on a show on Sirius Left radio say he was disconnecting his trailer and taking his cab and driving from Kentucky to Madison to join the protests over union busting.

Will Madison be our Cairo?