Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Creating Change

Greece: this is how it’s done. Not with coffee klatches and singalongs in public parks. You do not change the power structure with persuasion, you change it by making it fear you.

I am not necessarily a big fan of labor unions are they are constituted today, but I am an unrelenting supporter of collective bargaining. When we went on strike we did not sit outside holding hands and singing songs. We shut them down. When they tried to run the plant using supervisors we barred the gate, cut truck tires and overturned trucks. When they threatened to call in the National Guard we told them to go ahead, and that if they did so we would burn their factory to the ground.

Had we been demonstrating our resolve by singing songs they would not have believed us, but they had seen the tenor of our determination and they absolutely believed that we would do precisely what we said that we would do. The National Guard stayed in its armory and we won the day.

Were we right? I don’t know. Were the higher wages that we were demanding justified? Well, they had no more right to hold them down than we did to demand an increase. It was power against power. As we saw it, we were fighting for our future.

I am not in this fight because I am now an old man and it is not my future that is at stake. I fought for my future and now these children of privilege must fight for theirs. They think they can do that with campouts and singalongs in public parks. They are pathetic. If that is the best they have
to offer then they deserve no future.

No, I am not advocating the overthrow of our government by force. We did not burn their factory to the ground. We merely showed them that we were willing and able to do it and made them fear that we might.

Fear is the only language that power understands.

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