Thursday, September 30, 2010
Which way the wind blows
Commentary- Joe Carolan, Socialist Aotearoa
Ten million workers on a general strike in Spain. Cop cars burning in Barcelona. The biggest workers action in Spain since the Revolution. And the anger is rising.
The European Parliament barricaded in Brussels, protected by baton wielding robocops from over 100,000 workers representing unions throughout the continent. Banners flying from Greece, Italy, England, Portugal, Scandanivia- one continent, one struggle. The Peoples of Europe are rising up.
There were marches in Poland and in Eastern Europe. The radical left makes connection again with workers unions after two decades of unrestrained neoliberalism replaced Stalinist state capitalism. Solidarnosc!
And back in the Ould Sod, ruled by a drunken bumbling Prime Minister who has given more money to one bank than the whole of the G8 promised to give Sub Saharan Africa, the radical alternative to a spineless and pathetic union bureaucracy hits the ground running by ramming the gates of the Irish parliament on its first day sitting with a Cement Mixer, daubed with the slogans "Toxic Banks". This mortar attack is the most concrete proposal so far!
The wind is shifting- can you feel it?
All this week I've been out in the stores and in the corridors, talking to workers in retail, restaurants and casinos. Kiwi workers are sick of this shit- low pay, high stress, not enough hours, too much work, no security, lay offs, restructuring, unemployment, cuts to services, arrogant gobbledygook speaking HRs who need a good bullet in the head to clear their minds.
Yeah, we mightn't be having General Strikes on the scale of Spain. We mightn't be driving Cement Mixers through the doors of the Beehive. Heads might be down and workers might be scared.
But the resentment is palpable. GST going up? The Nats are Rats.
Bernard Hickey admits the Emperor has no clothes, FFS.
Teachers on strike. Doctors on strike. JB hifi workers on strike.
Soon to be joined by their brothers and sisters in the casinos, fastfood outlets and hotels.
It's the calm before the storm here in Aotearoa.