[Marxism] FORWARD WIDELY: CHARGES AGAINST ROGER TOUSSAINT

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Aug 25 20:04:51 MDT 2006


Marty Goodman 8/25/06

Below are two items: a press release and a copy of charges I filed against 
Roger Toussaint on August 8, 2006. It is in "text only" format.

The two items pertain to a speech Toussaint made to the Executive Board on 
June 10th urging violence against dissidents.

******************************************************************************

PRESS RELEASE!                          PRESS 
RELEASE!                       PRESS RELEASE!

     WATERGATE IN TWU LOCAL 100?

CHARGES FILED AGAINST TOUSSAINT FOR VIOLENT SPEECH AND COVER-UP.

                                                         August 23, 2006

[PAGE 1 of 2]

Roger Toussaint, President of the Transport Workers Union Local 100, during 
a June 10, 2006 meeting of the union's Executive Board, said that his 
opponents within the union are a "lunatic fringe" and urged that members 
"run people like that out with baseball bats."

We are outraged. Such threats are unprecedented for a Local 100 president.

In response, Marty Goodman, a member of the Local 100 Executive Board, 
filed internal union charges against Mr. Toussaint for violating the TWU 
Constitution and the Local 100 By-Laws [See accompanying charges].

The charges include Mr. Toussaint's responsibility for a Watergate style 
cover-up in which Local 100 Recording Secretary Darlyne Lawson has denied 
several Executive Board members their right to listen to the official tape 
recording of the June 10th meeting. Numerous requests, both verbal and in 
writing, were ignored by Ms. Lawson. The right to listen to recordings of 
Executive Board meetings was upheld by a vote of the Local 100 Executive 
Board under Mr. Toussaint's administration.

Violence within the labor movement cannot be tolerated and it is our duty 
as elected officers to speak out. Mr. Toussaint, whose intolerance for 
opposing views is well known, has now declared war on the democratic rights 
of every Local 100 member. We demand the right of every member to express 
their opinions without bodily harm or intimidation.

What's more, democratic unions have the best record defending the rights of 
its membership.

Mr. Toussaint's actions do not bode well for the upcoming union election in 
December in which he is a likely candidate. Will there be physical 
violence? Will candidates be free to campaign without fear? Will there be 
full disclosure of the process? Can the official election results be trusted?

Local 100 members must demand that Mr. Toussaint and his supporters 
repudiate violent threats and acts of intimidation. In addition, members 
must demand an end to the cover-up and allow union officers full access to 
the official record.

FOR MORE INFO CONTACT:

Marty Goodman, Local 100 Executive Board member: 212-781-5157
Ainsley Stewart, Local 100 Vice-President for Car Equipment Division: 
917-318-8356
John Mooney, Local 100 Vice-President for Station Division: 917-770-4082


                                                                                                                                          Marty 
Goodman
                                                                                                                                          731 
W. 183 St.
                                                                                                                                          NYC 
10033

Recording Secretary Lawson,
                                                                                                                                           August 
8, 2006

During the June 10, 2006 Joint Executive Board ? Executive Boarrd meeting, 
President Roger Toussaint referred to dissenters within the union as a 
"lunatic fringe" and urged members to "run people like that out with 
baseball bats."

By encouraging violence against members of our union, Mr. Toussaint has 
made himself unworthy of being Local 100 President. Violence or the threat 
of violence has no place in Local 100.

To my knowledge, such comments are without precedent for a Local 100 
President. Union democracy is the life-blood of the TWU and the labor 
movement. As history shows, democratic unions are best able to defend its 
members against management. The cause of transit workers cannot be advanced 
when fear prevents us from expressing our own opinions. The enemy is the 
MTA, not each other.

We must ask ourselves whether the 11,000 members who voted against the 
contract Mr. Toussaint negotiated are part of this "lunatic fringe," as he 
describes it? How many of them must be driven out with "baseball bats" to 
satisfy Toussaint's hatred of union democracy?  And, just what constitutes 
being "driven out" in Mr. Toussaint's eyes? A push down the stairs? A 
baseball bat to a member's skull? A member's death?

With calls to violence being expressed by our President, how democratic 
will our union election be in December?

Lastly, inquiries into listening to the official audio record of the June 
10th meeting have been ignored by Recording Secretary Darlyne Lawson, 
despite numerous written and verbal requests. Toussaint bears 
responsibility for Lawson's defiance of the Executive Board decision that 
upholds our right to hear the tapes.

Therefore, Mr. Toussaint is charged with violating Article XVI, Section I 
and Article XIX, Section I of the TWU Constitution. Mr. Toussaint is 
further charged with violating Article III and Article VIII, Section (b) of 
the Local 100 By-laws.





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