Category Archives: Labor

International May Day Greetings From Some Comrades Around The World

Solidarity from Pakistan

 

We workers of the Pakistan are part and parcel of international working class. We are enthusiastically engaged to bring equality and justice worldwide under the red banner of the revolutionary international communist Progressive Labor Party. We want to show our solidarity to the workers struggling against the evils of capitalism.

We must strive more effectively to get rid of exploitation, poverty, racism, nationalism and fundamentalism around the globe. Bosses are busy to kill the poor working class all over the world in the name of religion, nation and race but we workers must unite against these bosses to make an international communist revolution.

We are celebrating international May Day in very tough situations: under the terror of sectarianism, fanaticism, racism and nationalism. Like our other brothers and sisters struggling all over the world, we too are unafraid of capitalist horror.

Keep on moving on the road of revolution with full dedication, commitment and believe without any fear we will win — we will get rid of bosses and their bloody capitalist system. Long live communism, the international working class, and PLP!

 

Salutations from Haiti

Comrade workers!

The working class of Haiti salutes you on this May Day.

To change the world, to end the reign of the bosses, for the working class to get out from under slavery, communism must be triumphant. Yes, communism must triumph.

We, the working class, must work every day, for the Party of the international working class—the PLP—to seize power and end the dictatorship of the bosses.

We are the billions who live under capitalist misery. We are the billions who work in the bourgeois capitalist industries/factories.
We are the billions who have nothing under this capitalist system.

Comrade workers! We have the job of fighting for the solidarity of our class. We have to unite to fight the world created by the exploiters. We must stand together to build another world. We can no longer live to create profits for the bloodsucking bosses.

Comrades! There are many problems in the world. The capitalists are rivals in the fight to conquer the riches of the world. Workers, however, should not get involved in the fight between the exploiters. We must unite under the flag of our international revolutionary Party. The fight for the liberation of humanity is the fight of the workers.
The fight of the working class is our fight.

Comrade workers! Today is an occasion to reinforce our solidarity and to end capitalism. We are with you, every day and everywhere in the same struggle for our class. We are convinced that together, communism will be triumphant to end once and for all the inequalities, racism, sexism, and all the inhumanity that this system creates.
Long live the unity of the international working class, long live class struggle, long live the working class, long live May Day.

 

Solidarity from Palestine-Israel

 

We, the comrades in Palestine-Israel, send you these greetings to your Mayday march and dinner. While we are a small club, we march here in Palestine as well. PLP and friends be distributing a flyer titled “Why Communism?”

 If a Mayday march is going to be organized in East Jerusalem, we will be joining it as well. Here we are fighting against apartheid, fascism and racism, as well as their root: capitalism. We are active in a mass group, which is trying to build a mass movement against “the system” and calls for open rebellion. We are putting forward a clear anti-racist, pro-internationalist line and showing how the regime’s nationalism and racism serves only the rulers.

We are also active in a group for super-exploited contract workers, most of who are women. Last summer, we stood in solidarity with Palestinian and Jewish workers fighting for the release of political prisoners held by the fascist Israeli regime. At the weekly vigils, we are the only people calling for abolition of ALL occupation and ALL apartheid now, not merely the territories conquered in 1967, but also the ones stolen by Zionists in 1948.

From these struggles, we send you revolutionary greetings for May Day. We also send greetings for the 9th of May, the anniversary of the communist movement’s greatest achievement: the defeat of most of the European fascists, and especially the Nazis.

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Capitalism Murders in Bangladesh and All Over the World

Capitalism is murdering workers all over the world.  It is slowly grinding us to death under the weight of starvation wages that don’t cover the costs of living within their sick twisted system.  The profit system also literarily flares up and murders workers outright as they produce the material that those who die the slow death must sell for a living wage.  Hundreds of Women, children, and men have been burned to death over the past five years in Bangladesh so that rich capitalists can rake in huge profits.  The most recent factory fire in Dhaka where over 100 of our working class brothers and sisters were burned alive, many beyond recognition, as the factory didn’t have fire escapes or enough emergency exits, is just another example of how capitalism brutalizes the working class. It would be great if strikes that have shut down the ports in LA would happen every time that workers were killed.

 

As the New Depression rages and arch-racist puppet Obama attacks our social safety net and tries to install a new war budget with the bogeyman of the “fiscal cliff”, and the capitalist’s media trumpets that we need to shop shop shop on Black Friday, workers all over the world are fighting back.  Workers in McDonalds are striking for a better wage.  Workers in Wal-Mart and their allies are also striking to organize a union and fight back against the starvation wages that cause them to have to accept social services in order to have access to health care and to make ends meet.  We must not forget that Obama, on behalf of his finance capitalist masters, is attacking these very same social services that so many depend upon.

 

Thousands and thousands of refugees from Hurricane Sandy are scattered in hotels all over New York City.  Many of them don’t have ready access to food, and virtually none have access to new homes.  While hundreds of empty luxury condos are all over Brooklyn and New York City gentrifying the neighborhoods, capitalist Bloomberg sheds tears that they are doing all they can and then pats themselves on the back for what they have done.  The Red Cross abandoned so many refugees that they had to protest in front of them in order to get a promise of aid. Illustrating the intense racism and nationalism at the heart of capitalism, even though these workers have been brutalized, the plight of the undocumented workers is even worse as they aren’t getting anything from whatever relief is available.

 

The fires in Bangladesh are fueling the worker’s rage.  Thousands and thousands of angry workers have taken to the streets demanding that safety regulations are met.  Thousands of workers in Greece, Spain, Italy, and Portugal are battling the austerity programs that Capitalism is using to rip billions of dollars from the working class to ensure the profits of the rich capitalists. 

 

The fires in Bangladesh, the bombs falling in Palestine, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, Sudan, Yemen, the strikes in Wal-Mart and McDonalds, the refuges of Hurricane Sandy who are abandoned, the families of those who’ve been murdered by the racist NYPD, and the workers in Europe fighting austerity, are all fighting to reform some aspect of capitalism in order to try to make life under it more bearable.  Capitalism cannot be reformed to meet the needs of the working class because it must maximize profit.  Only a society directly organized to meet the needs of the working class and run by the working class can alleviate the grinding death of capitalism.  That system is Communism.  Communism will eradicate money, racism, and sexism while building a world that meets the working class’ needs.    Join the Communist Progressive Labor Party to fight for this world.  WWW.PLP.Org for more information. 

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Inter-Imperialist Conflict murders in Bangladesh and Gaza

Imperialism and Inter Imperialist rivalry plays out and it’s the workers that suffer.  As the major capitalist class wrangles on the macro level, hundreds and hundreds of workers die at the micro level.  The workers are rising up again in Egypt, while the global ambitions of a rising China and Russia challenging a crumbling US empire and their bullyboy Israel has had ramifications that have not only affected the working class in Gaza and the West Bank, but also over a hundred dead workers burned alive in Bangladesh.  The designs and plottings of the ruling class are paid in blood by the working class.

 

 

Gaza was a case study in ruling class hypocrisy.  Over a year ago, the US tried to push a UN resolution against the Assad regime in Syria condemning them for dropping bombs on their citizens.  They deplored the kind of government that would dare to drop bombs on their own citizens, the poor innocent people, and all the hand wrangling, false tears, and whatnot that accompany politicians on a humanitarian mission when oil is involved.  Russia and China were all about the fact that Assad may be a dictator and a murderer, but he’s our dictator and he gives us sweetheart deals and lets us have a base and we love him.  So, Russia and China blocked the UN from condemning Syria and following the humanitarian Imperialism that the Libya blueprint laid down.

 

Fast forward a year, and here we have Israel dropping bombs on Gaza.  The USA is blocking any condemnation of Israel dropping bombs on the civilian population of Gaza. Israel being an apartheid society, doesn’t recognize the Palestinians as much more than demi-humans taking up space.  Taking a page out of the How The West Was Won handbook of genocide with another out of the Nazi handbook for How To Treat A Ghetto, they have kept the Palestinian population walled up and sieged in a situation that mirrors all of the worst moments in human history.  The Israelis are carrying out their election year tradition of bombing the civilian population of Gaza to collectively punish the Islamist-Terrorist organization of Hamas.  In Israeli ideology, every Gazan is a terrorist since Hamas is the elected leadership of Gaza.  Subjecting every individual to an all-consuming hegemonic identity is called “racism”, and it is a useful tool for motivating the soldiers in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) to commit atrocities on the Palestinian working class.  It is not the rich Palestinians that worry about bombs being dropped on them, as it’s the working class’ children who pay the worst price for the designs of the ruling class.  PLP, its allies, and friends in Gaza and Israel, will continue to build the kind of multi-racial, anti-nationalist, anti-capitalist Communist leadership that is needed in Israel and throughout the Levant.

 

As the Imperialists dropped bombs on a civilian population in the Levant, the insatiable need to increase profits at the cost of the working class has murdered over a hundred mostly female workers in Bangladesh.  They were burned beyond recognition, jumping to their deaths, crowded like cattle trying to push their way out of narrow corridors just like a century ago in downtown New York or a few years ago in the very same country!  The racist capitalists do not care about the working class.  They do not care about anything other than exporting their capital to where it can make the greatest return.  Echoing the intense oppression of the textile industry in Europe when Marx was first writing, the capitalists are at it again.

Bangladesh exports about $18 billion worth of garments every year. Workers in the country’s factories are among the lowest-paid in the world with entry-level workers earning a government-stipulated minimum wage of about $37 a month.  

Bangladesh’s garment industry, the second largest exporter of clothing after China, has a notoriously poor record of fire safety. Since 2006, more than 500 Bangladeshi workers have died in garment factory fires, according to Clean Clothes Campaign, an anti-sweatshop advocacy group based in Amsterdam. Experts say many of the fires could have been easily avoided if the factories had taken the right precautions. Many factories are in cramped neighborhoods, have too few fire escapes and widely flout safety measures. The industry employs more than three million workers in Bangladesh, mostly women. 

Most of the workers who died were on the first and second floors and were killed, fire officials said, because there were not enough exits for them to get out.

“The factory had three staircases, and all of them were down through the ground floor,” said Maj. Mohammad Mahbub, the operations director for the fire department, according to The Associated Press. “So the workers could not come out when the fire engulfed the building.”

The sexist Tazreen Fashions Limited was making over 3 million US dollars a month in profit! They had NO fire exits!  Another element of the tragedy is that they provided childcare in the factory.  How many of the women lost their children to the flames that were fueled by the capitalist’s greed?  How much did the sick fucks who caused this tragedy pocket? And what type of garments does The Tazreen Fashion Factory make you ask? WalMart garments it seems.  While WalMart is attacking its striking workforce in the US, it is literarily murdering them oversees. PLP is organizing with the striking WalMart workers in the US and is with the workers in Bangladesh who have been fighting back against the terrible conditions that capitalism has forced upon them. We will continue to support the brave women and men workers who are struggling in Bangladesh and all over the world.

 

The Url: http://www.alibaba.com/member/bd100182308/company_profile.html can be used to send a message directly to the murdering capitalist scum Mr. Aftab uz Zaman. 

Other contact information for messages as follows:

Email: noton@tubagroupbd.net  Contact Person: Mr. Aftab uz Zaman

Telephone: 880-01711346642

Mobile: 880-1191827254

 Fax: 8802-8860025 (Head Office)

 

Address: Nischintapur, Zirabo, Savar, Dhaka-1341, Bangladesh 

A Consignee in the US is : INTERNATIONAL DIRECT GROUP INC
. 499 FASHION AVE STE-12, NEW YORK, NY 10018-6803

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Capitalism murders in NYC

The bosses press are patting themselves on the back for the bang up job that they are trying to spin that they did in New York after Tropical Storm Sandy obliterated parts of the capital of world capital.  There are parallels to Hurricane Katrina flooding parts of New Orleans and the US bosses taking advantage of that crisis to fire all the teachers and permanently displace the Black population of the 9th ward.  The bosses are up to it again with the displacement of Black and Hispanic workers from Red Hook, Far Rockaway, and other parts affected by the Hurricane that still don’t have heat or running water.

 

The real estate moguls that are the real power behind Baby doc Cuomo, the governor of New York, and the billionaire capitalist mayor Bloomberg who rules New York like its his own personal fife are licking their chops at the prospect of all that valuable oceanside land that they can develop.  They’ve already been developing it in some of these neighborhoods with gated communities and restaurants as the tells that gentrification are right around the corner.  Of course, the real estate moguls are going to have do deal with the contradiction of changing weather patterns which the bourgeoisie have absolutely no answer for since their vast wealth depends on oil remaining king.    

 

The workers who have been displaced due to the storm are in shelters in schools and other large buildings and are being constantly moved around.  Many of them are not getting the food or medical care that they need.  This disaster clearly illustrates that capitalism can not take care of us workers.  They are going to use this disaster to further their practice on how to institute fascism.  They are already rationing gas.  This is getting us conditioned for life under a wartime footing where gas is rationed due to the needs of protecting the bosses’ empire.

 

The whole way that the disaster was handled and continues to be handled clearly illustrates that we workers could do a better job than the bosses can running this society. We would have organized millions of people all over to come and help with the rebuilding while also creating the conditions necessary for surviving a hurricane class storm, whether it be a sea wall or other elements of infrastructure.  The bosses are using this storm to rebuild their decaying infrastructure while looking with an eye to future profit by displacing the working class populations most affected by the storm.    

South Africa’s Workers lead the way!

The working class in South Africa continues to be a model for how the working class should take on the organized violence that is the capitalist’s state.  The rules of the game in South Africa’s labour market have changed and the new players are workers fighting back and refusing to back down or rely on the SACP (South Africa’s Communist Party)  and its union.  The state constantly tries the justify the way that they monopolize the use of force.  They have church’s and reporter’s mouthing the lie that only the cops and courts who keep the proletariat in chains should be allowed to hurt or kill anyone.

The Organized workers will use violence to defend themselves from the organized force of the state.  Workers all over the world should be emboldened by the working class in South Africa.  The working class in South Africa needs the revolutionary Communist Progressive Labor Party.  Without PLP’s Communist organization and leadership, today’s heroic reform struggles will not break capitalism’s chains.  

The bosses’ mouthpieces ignore the fact that the working class in South Africa is slowly being murdered day after day by international capitalism’s need to keep wages at near starvation levels.  The grueling work of mining and other jobs Mirroring the role of being a Black President, Jacob Zuma, like Barracks O-bomb them in the US, is trying to mislead the working class using the lies of nationalism and all class unity.  

Update: South Africa’s union of local government workers are planning a national strike that could take place as early as this week, a spokesman said Oct. 8, Reuters reported The government’s workers are now showing their class allegiance.

Chicago Teachers: Battle Racist Education

CHICAGO, September 18 — The strike of 26,000 rank-and-file teachers who broke the bosses’ law in fighting to defend their students was suspended today after a vote of 800 delegates in the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), pending a membership-wide vote over the next several weeks.

This was a strike for the students and their parents. The teachers’ fight is one which opposes the school bosses racist oppression of the students. The teachers are fighting for better learning conditions for students and better working conditions for themselves. Many were open to Progressive Labor Party’s ideas and leadership shown by over 2,000 CHALLENGES and tens of thousands of fliers were distributed, and several teachers’ agreed to work more closely and learn more about the PLP.

The strike demonstrated that workers, united can defy the bosses’ laws. When teachers strike they openly defy the state’s plan to indoctrinate the next generation of workers in the classroom.

The teachers struck against racism. More than 80 percent of Chicago students are black and Latino and the school bosses run a system founded on racist discrimination that drives students into low-wage jobs, mass unemployment or the military, to kill our sister and brother workers in imperialist wars.

During the strike, the rank and file picketed every one of the system’s 585 schools, every day. Daily rallies of tens of thousands of people, including parents, students, and workers from other unions backed the strikers. Members who had formerly been inactive learned what it means to fight back against the boss. Others stepped forward into leadership roles. A strike changes people!

Smash the Bosses’ Dictatorship

This is only one battle in a long class war of workers against bosses that can be won only when the rulers’ state apparatus is smashed by a communist revolution led a by PLP.

The bosses are pushing their agenda to indoctrinate working class students and blaming teachers for capitalist failures. The leaders of the national unions are helping them; while the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) president Randi Weingarten reluctantly came out in support of the strike. The fact is the trade unions as a whole, including the AFT and the National Education Association are partners with the bosses in opening the door to “reforms”. This will break seniority by re-writing tenure and starting the process to make teacher evaluation dependent on phony test scores.

The strike has already inspired millions of workers and youth and set an example of what kind of fight-back is possible. The experience of defying the bosses’ laws must be extended to a strike against their closing of even one school.

With the national elections just weeks away, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel reminds us that we live under a class dictatorship and that the state apparatus (the government) serves the ruling class of billionaires, bankers and school reformers no matter which party is in the White House. The bosses and their politicians may disagree on how to save the U.S. empire but they are united on keeping their class in power and terrorizing workers and youth into accepting a future of racist terror, poverty and war. And part of the bosses’’ purpose in cutting back school budgets is to use these resources to fight their continuing imperialist oil wars.

The legal system that attacked this strike is the same court system and ruling class government that has:

• Enacted laws in Illinois, backed by both parties and signed by a Democratic Party governor forcing teachers to have a super majority (70 percent) to call a strike but CTU members smashed that barrier with a 90 percent vote;

• Passed another law that if a teachers’ strike “presents a clear and present danger,” the Mayor and school bosses can use the courts to force them back to work;

• Created the world’s largest prison population, over 2.4 million, 70% black and Latino;

• Deported over 400,000 immigrants last year alone, with tens of thousands more sitting in immigration jails, separated from family and friends;

• Foreclosed the homes of millions of workers and their families since the economic crash of 2008;

This ruling-class dictatorship must be smashed and replaced by dictatorship of the workers, in which millions of workers and youth will serve the needs of the international working class.

The strike helped expose the Democratic Party and its revolving door between the White House and Chicago’s City Hall. This includes Emanuel, Obama’s former Chief-of Staff (who was replaced by William Daley) and now head of Obama’s political fund-raising committee; Arne Duncan, national education Czar and former Chicago school boss; and Obama himself, former Illinois Senator.

Part of this bosses’ dictatorship is the use of their election circus in which both political parties are used to divert workers from looking to revolt against the ruling class that exploit us. By continuing the fight, the teachers will continue to get the support of parents, students and workers from all industries, in Chicago and beyond. PLP can expose the bosses’ class dictatorship, point workers in another direction, off the treadmill of endless reform and onto the road to revolution, a vital lesson that educators can learn on and off the picket lines!

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Education, not Imperialist War!

The strike of 30,000 school teachers and education workers in Chicago is the necessary response to the attacks that students, teachers and parents have been facing for years.  It’s significant that the strike is happening in Chicago, which is the Ground Zero for fascist “educational reform.” That has the full support of the democrats and AFT president Randi Weingarten.  The charter school movement, school closings, increased testing and “data driven” teaching, the new evaluation measures, and the budget cuts have all been forced on the mostly black and Latino school population. This is clearly racist. But the working class is pushing back against these attacks in a way that we haven’t seen in 25 years.

“School Reform” Is about Control, Not Education!

 These endless changes forced down the throats of students and teachers nationwide are more about disciplining us than education.  Obama and Duncan’s Race to the Top and the drive towards standardized curriculum and testing is part of the bosses move to win the hearts and minds of our students to fight in their expanding imperialist wars.  School reform in Chicago has shown it’s racist nature from the mass firings of veteran black teachers from schools that our students never deserved, discipline policies that force our students out of school and the hiring of young white teachers into schools that are still setup for failure.

Many of the reforms involve micro managing what teachers do while giving them less and less support, supplies, etc. Obama’s team of Rahm and Duncan has shown their true colors in the dismantling of public education and their attacks on the labor movement. The ruling class in this country wants to use these reforms to crush the spirit of teachers and control the schools for the needs of the capitalists.

Money for War, No Money for Schools!

These attacks are necessary in a system that is based on the wealth of a few and the exploitation of the many, CAPITALISM.  So, while thousands of anti-racist teachers take to the street fighting for decent schools, dignity and the respect that education workers deserve billions have been spent on imperialist wars.  From Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan to propping up US military bases all over the world.  As long as the bosses are in power, we will face continous wars for profit –only a revolution for communism, workers power, can bring us the changes we need!

(More on the history of communists in the labor movement in next leaflet-Volume 3.)

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Workers Murdered in South Africa

The Massacre in South Africa

 

The massacre in South Africa is a testament to what happens when a Communist Party betrays the working class. The South African Communist Party (SACP) was a Communist party at the forefront of the struggle against racism. The practice and experience of the SACP helped for us in the PLP to develop our own line and practice on racism.

 

But here we are, 30 dead workers gunned down by Black and White cops echoing the Apartheid era’s War Dogs’ crimes against humanity. This is what the multi-racial struggle against racism has created in South Africa, a black president apologizing for the dead workers while a woman of Indian descent apologizes for the cops who she says were defending themselves as they attempted to break the picket lines.  The state is not pointing out the fact that it supports the capitalist class that owns the means of production and exploits the working class.  None of the spokespeople who are part of the ideological superstructure – the academics, the politicians, the church leaders – none  of them are supporting the worker’s right to arm themselves and fight for their economic interests against the violence of the state.

 

30 dead workers. This is the real price of Platinum, the tech metal that’s so valuable to industry now. The class struggle transcends race and nationalism. The ruling class can use racism or multi-racial unity to preserve its rule and profits. They can survive any catostrophe and crises except Communist revolution.

 

This brings us to the real tragedy — the betrayal of the SACP. They joined the ANC as part of the struggle against apartheid and have now become a part of the ruling class institutional power structure. They are misleaders of the working class.  There are some revolutionary elements in South Africa and radical workers who are willing to fight against the state and the needs of international capitalism to extract Platinum from the mines, and they need to join the PLP and build us in South Africa.

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Chicago Teachers Authorize a Strike

The international assault on education is finding resistance in Chicago. The teachers union there has decided to authorize a strike in Obama’s base town. Over 90% of the teachers have voted to strike.  The attack on workers within the guide of education “reform” is deforming the already pathetically low level of education the working class’ children get.  The US Ruling Class has to walk the contradiction of educating the working class while simultaneously disinforming them with capitalist ideology.  The last thing the Ruling Class of any nation state wants is dialectically thinking, critically engaging, working class capable of unmasking their ideology, propaganda, and outright lies.

From Quebec, to Oaxaca, to Greece, Spain, and the US, capitalism is attacking education and putting in tests and busting unions as their answer.  In the recent CFR report “US education Reform and National Security”, written by Joel Klein and Condoleezza Rice et al, the US bemoans the fact that they are falling behind their imperialist competitors.   The authors advance a strategy of testing and “choice”.  In other words, charter schools and busting of unionized workers in order to grind down teaching from a life-time profession where long term relationships can be developed and fostered into a 3 – 5 year and out program.

Capitalism can only ever reform by culling the best into elite schools or programs.  Discrimination is progress under capitalism.  They need a few to succeed and the rest to be fodder for either the factories or the military.  They need to produce tests to ensure that their ideology is taught in the classroom, as they know that Communists are their mortal enemy.

This is going to be a long summer of protest, and hopefully, uprisings against capitalism.  The state will retaliate and more workers will be angered at what’s going on.  The teachers striking in Chicago are already uniting with parents and students.  This is a valuable opportunity to develop and build the PLP there.

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MAY DAY!!! Fight For Communism!

May Day’s Communist Roots Belie Rulers’ Reform Sham

Wednesday, April 25, 2012 at 11:56AM

May Day has always had two sides to it: one that demands reforms, and the revolutionary side that organizes to destroy capitalism. May Day commemorates a massive strike wave in the U.S., and the particular battle in Chicago’s Haymarket Square in 1886. The movement’s leaders demanded an 8-hour day, but also advocated the “abolition of the wage system.” Six of them were hung by the rulers for their allegiance to the working class and defiance of capitalism. Then and now the capitalists feared this revolutionary side to May Day.

In 1848, Marx and Engels wrote in the Communist Manifesto, “A specter is haunting Europe, the specter of Communism.” By 1886, the rulers of Chicago saw this specter. “The newspapers and industrialists were increasingly declaring that May 1, 1886 was in reality the date for a Communist working-class insurrection modeled on the Paris Commune. According to Melville E. Stone, Head of the Chicago Daily News…a ‘repetition of the Paris Communal riots was freely predicted’ for May 1, 1886” (Page 90, “Labor’s Untold Story,” Boyer and Morais).

In December 1886, San Francisco transit workers joined this rising strike wave. They demanded a workday reduction from 13-15 hours to 12 hours (then 7 days a week), and for a pay increase from $2.25 to $2.50 a day. “Strike-breakers were hired, and there was a great deal of violence. Cars were damaged, strike-breakers were beaten, and one person was killed.” Newspapers reported eight instances of the use of dynamite by the striking workers. In March 1887, the Governor signed a bill “limiting gripmen, drivers, and conductors to a 12-hour day.” (“Transit In San Francisco” published by SF MUNI RR Communications Department.)

In the 1880’s the early leaders of the American Federation of Labor were somewhat radical — it was actually an AFL delegate’s report to the Marxist-led International Workingmen’s Association that led to the call for the first May Day.

But by the 1920’s the pro-capitalist AFL leadership, fearing the growth of communist ideas in the working class, collaborated with the U.S. government to subvert May Day. At the 1928 AFL Convention, the Executive Council supported a Congressional resolution to make May 1 “Child Health Day.” They said, “May 1 will no longer be known as either strike day or communist labor day.”

The revolutionary side of May Day dominated when the communist movement was strong. During the peak of the communist organizing of the CIO’s industrial unions in the 1930’s and ‘40s, May Day was celebrated in the U.S. As many as 250,000 would march to New York’s Union Square. However, with the advent of the Cold War, and U.S. imperialism’s launching of a worldwide anti-communist offensive, the bosses’ government in Washington helped oust communists from union leadership by making it illegal for them to hold union office. With the triumph of business unionism and anti-communism, organized labor discarded May Day and recognized Labor Day in September.

However, in 1971 PLP resurrected the annual May Day march from its abandonment by the old U.S. Communist Party. PLP has marched in many cities every year since.

From the Haymarket battle in 1886, revolutionary workers spread May Day around the globe. But history is written by the conquerors, and many workers born here know nothing of the contribution that the U.S. working class, with the support of the international working class and communist movement, made to the development of this revolutionary holiday. Today May Day is the official Labor Day in most countries, but the leadership of these marches demand reforms, and stress the “common goals” of labor and capital.

PLP has learned from the triumphs of the communist movement in the USSR and China, and from their failure to fight directly for communism. We advocate “Abolish the Wage System” as part of changing the relationship of workers and work in a new communist society.

The abolition of money, of production for sale and profit and of the wage system is absolutely necessary to establish communism. When the international working class wins and holds control over all economic, political and cultural institutions of society, it will unleash a creative power that will propel the human race to its highest accomplishments in all fields of endeavor. We call this the dictatorship of the proletariat. We need a mass revolutionary communist party to achieve this. The capitalists will use every means — including mass, fascist terror and war — to prevent it.

For the last several years some groups now want to “Reclaim May Day.” They want to reform the “evils” of capitalism, but disconnect May Day from its communist roots. PLP seeks to keep May Day as a revolutionary international working-class holiday; to advance and popularize communist production for need as the future of the human race; to develop a strong and healthy class hatred that will destroy wage slavery and fascism everywhere.

Long live the 1st of May, the revolutionary, international, working class holiday! Fight for communism!

plp.org

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