Jose G. Perez jgperez at SPAMfreepcmail.com
Wed Jan 26 00:07:42 MST 2000


    I wish I lived in the Atlanta with the progressive labor movement. The
one I live in  is one where the labor officialdom hasn't lifted a finger to
try to organize even the Time Warner divisions here (CNN/TBS) even though
much of Time-Warner up north is organized and the company would be extremely
vulnerable to an organizing drive, since there is a huge gap between what
Time-Warner is paying down here and what people doing the exact same jobs at
union shops get.


----- Original Message -----
From: "John Lacny" <deathtocapitalism at yahoo.com>
To: <marxism at lists.panix.com>
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2000 1:20 AM
Subject: Re: potpourri

> --- Michael Yates <mikey+ at pitt.edu> wrote:
> > I was recently in Atlanta talking with leftwingers
> > in the labor movement.  We had a forum sponsored by
> > Monthly Review, which was well-attended.  The
> > audience was a great mix of black and white workers,
> > workers and academics, and men and women.  The idea
> > of these forums of which there have been five so
> far,
> > is to begin to build a labor left with a strong
> > enough base in the rank-and-file to gain some power
> > in the labor movement and in the larger radical
> > movement for social justice.
>      Michael,
>      I'm curious as to whether the reputably
> progressive head of the labor council there, Stewart
> Acuff, was present?  I remember hearing him speak at
> the Jobs with Justice annual meeting last year, and he
> was most impressive.
>      My Union Summer coordinator last summer, who is
> from Georgia, told a story about Acuff's daring
> tactics at a demonstration against the Contract on
> America.  When some labor demonstrators entered
> Gingrich's office in Atlanta, they were stopped by a
> cop, but Acuff promptly walked up to the cop and
> body-slammed him right in front of the TV cameras.
> While the point of this story was to demonstrate how
> NOT to conduct public relations (body-slamming a cop
> in front of the TV cameras, which is likely to cause
> aversion on the part of the public, not being a very
> tactically smart thing to do), I nevertheless find
> myself wishing that we here in Pittsburgh had a labor
> council president willing to pummel officers of the
> law for the greater good of social justice.
>      Also, Michael, do you think a project like this
> is capable of taking off in a place like Pittsburgh?
> While obviously we should be all for rank-and-file
> action, it's also the case that unless there are
> progressive officers at the top, the bureaucrats are
> likely to make things very difficult for a burgeoning
> labor left at the base.  My hunch is that the
> successes in Atlanta can be attributed at least
> partially to the much more left-leaning stance of a
> guy like Acuff-- although you would know better than I
> do.
>      On a personal note, I wonder if maybe my Union
> Summer coordinator was in the crowd?  He worked for
> AFSCME in Chicago for a few years but was back in
> Atlanta the last I knew, and was hoping to take on the
> job of Southern Recruitment Director for the OI... his
> name's Patrick Scott, 27 (I think) years old,
> African-American....  On this question you can write
> to me privately at my other e-mail address
> (jplst15+ at pitt.edu) rather than boring the whole list,
> although I imagine many listmembers would appreciate
> you sharing your thoughts on some of the other
> questions I've raised?
>      Thanks,
>      John
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