John Oliver Mason

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Action in Chicago

Posted by John Mason on August 6, 2013 at 6:55 PM

I'm getting ready for my trip to Chicago, to attend the Delegates Assembly (DA) of the national writers Union/ UAW Local 1981. Chicago is rich in Labor history, such as the Haymarket incident of 1886, when seven labor activists were accused of throwing a bomb into a crowd of police during a rally of strikers at the McCormick Harvester works in May 1886, and the founding in June 1905 of the most radical and colorful of Labor movements, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW).

Currently, Chicago is the focus of such Labor activism as the strike of fast-food workers retail workers, which has spread to many other American cities where these workers are fighting for a decent wage to live on. There are also protests against the meeting, in Chicago's Palmer House Hilton, against the meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the organization of legislators and corporate lobbyists that has set the template for such anti-worker, anti-minority laws as voter ID laws that would keep low-income and minority peopole, seniors, and students from legitimately voting; the "stand your ground" laws that are targeted against minorities-the same kind of defense George Zimmerman used after killing Treyvon Martin; bills supporting privatetived prisons, many of them of low security, to detain immigrants;  and "right-to-work" (for less) bills that would hamper workers' ability to organize. Plus, the Chicago Tribune is one of the papers of the Tribune Company, along with the Los Angeles Times, the Baltimore Sun, and the Orlando Sentinel, that the Koch Brothers, the infamous paymasters of the tea parties and other right-wing causes, seeks to purchase.

Yes, it'll be busy in Chicago. I'll let you know how it turns out.



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