'Cause the Union Makes Us Strong
April 17, 2013 10:48 PM   Subscribe

On May 16, 1934, the Teamsters local 574 of Minneapolis, Minnesota called for a strike to stop all truck deliveries in the city not run by union workers. This 1981 documentary tells the story in the workers' own words. Part 1, part 2.
posted by cthuljew (6 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
"the impact of it was, that the employers were not going to be the masters of the workplace... and that was really what it was all about"

As soon as the labor movement started to drift away from this - the demand for control over one's working life, brought about through democratic organizations of the rank and file making decisions and acting directly, rather than through a vast labor bureaucracy and a rigged legal system - it lost its way.

It's finding it again, though. The song playing in the background is an IWW song, and that union, which never wavered from its principles, is currently organizing dozens of shops in the midwest, including several in the Minneapolis area.
posted by phrontist at 11:23 PM on April 17, 2013 [3 favorites]

I was at the first picket at Chi-Lake. It was good.
posted by cthuljew at 11:36 PM on April 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

I miss the Occupy Wall Street thing.
posted by twoleftfeet at 12:12 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]

thanks for posting this, I look forward to watching it
posted by rebent at 6:10 AM on April 18, 2013

I miss the Occupy Wall Street thing.

Are you on teh facebooks? "Like" the group "Occupy Wall St." and you will get daily updates to your fb news feed about all kind of interesting related work that Wall Street Occupiers and related groups are currently engaged in. They have non-facebook sites too. There are a couple other big Occupy groups that are still active in various ways, and also put out information regularly. Occupy Chicago has a good facebook feed, for example. I'd be highly surprised if there wasn't still related activity in the Oakland area and other parts of the west coast.

Occupy radicalized some people who hadn't been involved in political action before, and helped connect them up with each other and with folks who had already been doing that sort of flavor of populist activism, and many of those people have continued on with the day-to-day work of preventing evictions and organizing against mortgage foreclosures and injustices around that whole situation, disaster cooperatives instead of disaster capitalism in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, student and medical debt relief and related issues, labor organizing eg. in concert with the IWW, etc.

(Hmm, maybe I should find time to put together an informative post on this topic. Anyone want to help?)
posted by eviemath at 7:22 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

Chicago Lake seems like a good early target. They must be making money hand over fist and I can't be the only one who has the impression that the ownership is pretty scummy.
posted by Area Man at 11:05 AM on April 19, 2013 [1 favorite]

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