North Texas Communists and other progressives sit down for a discussion on the first Wednesday of every month. On February 4, we began by noting several seemingly unrelated news stories from the last couple of days:
As soon as we asked what conclusions could be drawn, the new guy hit it right on the head: "The class struggle is becoming clearer." Everybody agreed with him, and the additional point was made that we have never, in our lifetimes, seen the class struggle come so clear.
Next, we talked about what should be done. Should we push for actions against banks that are trying to get stimulus money, keep CEO pay outrageously high, and destroy their employees' rights? Should we oppose, instead, a certain fast-food restaurant chain that is funding the anti-worker push against the Employee Free Choice Act? Should we oppose a particularly vicious international employer who is funding the anti-worker side of the argument?
Everybody was doing some real thinking about this, and the point was made that we were doing exactly what Communists are supposed to do. We may be just "average Joe/Jo" workers, but we do our best to think things through, and we work collectively. If we could get the whole working class to do that, victory couldn't be far away. Meanwhile, though, we do the best we can.
Of the hypothetical proposals we were deliberating, I think organizing some kind of resistance to the big financial institutions had the most traction. We talked about the highly successful and inspirational victory of the workers at Republic Windows and Doors, who sat in their shop while organizing dissent against Bank of America. The bank had cut off credit to the company right after getting a big government bailout. The company decided to close down and leave the workers high and dry. But, a couple weeks later, supporters across the nation made the bank cave in. The company caved, too, and the workers walked out with a pretty good victory!
"Just where is the line today," one of the newer guys asked. All of us were wondering, with him, just how far Americans are willing to go toward a real solution to the crisis. The real long term solution, we agreed, is to take power away from the big capitalists. But what do we do now, in the short term?
It was a good discussion.
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