[Marxism] One Sided Class War: The UAW-GM 2007 Negotiations

Pance Stojkovski pance at rogers.com
Fri Oct 5 22:14:45 MDT 2007

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin .... No. 62 .... October 6, 2007

One Sided Class War: The UAW-GM 2007 Negotiations

Sam Gindin

In 1978, then United Auto Worker (UAW) President Douglas Fraser, 
frustrated with corporate America's new aggressiveness, accused 
U.S. business of waging a 'one-sided class war against working 
people, the unemployed, the poor, the minorities, the very young 
and the very old, and even many in the middle class of our 
society.' In response, he warned, 'we in the UAW intend to 
reforge the links with those who believe in struggle: the kind 
of people who sat-down in the factories in the 1930s and who 
marched in Selma in the 1960s.' The threat was, sadly, not serious 
and the promised identification with the movement gave way to a 
deeper identification with the companies.  Auto workers, and 
American workers more generally, have been paying the price since. 

The UAW negotiations over the last few months might have been a 
chance to make up for that generation-long period of working-class 
defeat. But once again, only one class was fighting.  As a result, 
the union which once pioneered new benefits for working people 
now contributed to dismembering them. The union whose great sit-down 
strikes demonstrated the power of solidarity is now shabbily 
negotiating lower wages for workers not-yet hired and not-yet 
voting. With this agreement, it is -- as the Wall Street Journal 
noted (September 27, 2007) -- no longer the UAW that sets the 
bar in the industry, but Toyota.

Complete bullet:

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