For nearly four weeks now working people and youth in Wisconsin have been waging a heroic battle to defend union rights, jobs and public services. Now Governor Walker has pulled a coup! Last night Republicans used an illegal move to force through the union-busting bill. This maneuver means the movement cannot simply rely on the fourteen Senate Democrats to hold out. A recall or a legal challenge would take too long. The time to act is now! This means immediately developing a highly-coordinated plan for escalation through general strikes and other actions.
The revolt in Wisconsin has captured the imagination and support of millions of working people and youth from coast to coast. As Michael Moore stated, Governor Walkers class war has aroused a sleeping giant of working class anger against corporate America and their politicians. There are more and more calls for a general strike because people correctly see the need for bolder action. We must rapidly act to make these calls a reality.
There hasn’t been anything like this in the US in decades. If Governor Walker can get his way it will not only mean the effective destruction of public sector unions in Wisconsin it would mark an open season on all unions and working people across the US. But a victory would give enormous boost of confidence to everyone looking to fight back against the cuts, layoffs and the corporate agenda.
Since the top union officials have’t shown signs of putting forward a clear plan of action, we and other activists have been petitioning and gathering support for the idea of rapidly organizing a one-day public sector general strike as the first step of an emergency plan for escalating the struggle until Walker backs down.
On Thursday, March 10, Socialist Alternative worked with high school students activist to lead a student walkout of over 2,000 in protest the passing of the bill. We are continuing to push for the bold step of general strike action but already the costs have been very high. With travel costs, printing of material and other expenses we’ve spent over $2,500 already and will be spending much more. If, like us, you feel there is an urgent need to popularize the idea of general strike action, please consider helping us with a donation today. We all need to come together to support this crucial battle for the future of the labor movement and you can make a real contribution even if you can’t physically be there in Wisconsin.
These are historical times we are living through. The attacks coming down on working people all across the country and the world show this whole system which puts profits for a tiny elite above human need is bankrupt. We need fundamental change where working people have a say in the running of society through the transformation of society to democratic socialism. If you agree with these ideas and our approach to the struggle in Wisconsin you should also consider joining Socialist Alternative.