Cyberunions Episode 92: Alt ‘Rights’: What does labor look like in the age of Trump

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Update Section

  • This is decidedly not Walton
  • Matt coming in from Chicago
  • Chicago teachers strike
  • Site of Haymarket square, Mayday for the American listeners
  • Is there a memorial for the workers in Haymarket square?
  • Using new tech for this podcast connections Zokos.com planned to be free software
  • Stephen has left the FSF as of last week, more details in future show, but now back into his coop Glocal.coop and social movement organizing
  • Matt gets an orientation in the studio
  • Matt starts hosting himself and gives his intro
  • Matt is a data analyst with Cook County Election, encompassing the suburbs outside of Chicago and a member of SEIU local 73, prior worked with Unite-Here and then SEIU local 1.
  • Stephen learns about a hell-of-a-question as Matt grew up in a union family
  • Matt is pretty actively involved on the ground in street actions
  • Stephen received artisan beer from Mexico
  • Matt prepares to get off the grid. 
  • Labor section
  • What are we entering in terms of labor in the US. 
  • Our thoughts on what we think
  • Trump ran a campaign supported by many poor workers, areas that were devastated by globalization
  • Reality is Trump has fought workers often
  • Not sure what he will do with the NLRB
  • What does the worst look like?
  • US in 1900s, no protection to workers and was a much more violent experience to gain a union
  • Are we destined for a return to 1920s instead of a closed shop
  • A lot of unions that are saying that the President and Congress are hostile to workers and unions and seek to kill off unions
  • It is impossible in the capitalist system to eliminate the conflict between workers and bosses, may kill the organizing for a bit
  • Brief history of the NLRA
  • Labor peace led to a movement to overcome capitalism was put back, and then Taft Hartley Act killed hopes of the left in labor at the time
  • Seeing for the first time the left really coming together, socialist groups experience large growth for the first time in a generation
  • Business unionism to potentially advance and not for organizing militancy amongst workers
  • In the prior to NLRB and in the 1900s to 1930s most union activists being killed were unskilled workers as skilled was protected to a greater extent
  • Concern of build up of Nationalism and a similar dynamic of patriotism that was held against the IWW in their stance on World War I and their inaction was used against them
  • Tendency to see labor being split and now we are seeing the trades, that being building trades
  • Stephen may repeat himself… the FDR model of pay a man to dig a ditch and pay another to fill it to put people back to work, we have a perverted version of that 
  • The idea of the wall is not about borders and or stopping the flow of immigrants it is an appeal to racism and fear of the other
  • Global ‘fear’ of racism like Brexit and now more traditionally conservative voices like Angela Merkel appearing center and liberal
  • Scapegoating the poor and turns out that the story was false
  • The US embarrassment
  • Coming back to labor
  • If building trade goes back supporting Trump and have been in gentrification in major US cities
  • Does this path lead to the AFL-CIO split again? Matt is not in the AFL-CIO as SEIU is part of Change to Win
  • Will the AFL-CIO respond differently than before 
  • There has been a lot that unions have done to reach out and support worker centers, but here are tensions brewing between service workers and building trades 
  • Allowing Police and Law enforcement being part of the federations may also lead to splits in the labor movement
  • Some building trade unions have gone to the White House and it is of great concern
  • It seems like attacks on workers and there may be unions that will work their cut and screw other unions
  • If we face a national work to right will the business unions face militancy from their members
  • Any one who says that to go on strike is a privilege is bull shit and do not understand the sacrifice that is being made and for why
  • No one ever wants to go on strike it is something they want to avoid .. Strike is not the tool of the privileged
  • True alternate facts to see liberal outlets saying it.

Tech Section

  • New age of surveillance … Alexa in Matt’s house
  • Alexa is waiting to be heard, waiting to respond to saying its name, the claim, that nothing is uploaded to the servers, but cannot verify it cause it is not open source
  • Matt might do a packet sniffer to find out
  • The new trend of Internet of Things
  • Serious privacy implications, already Ecco has come up in police subpoena to get records
  • Alexa listening in and new microwaves turning in to cameras
  • TechSolidarity meeting talking about tech workers discussing the data that they are sitting on
  • Same conversations at opendata meetings in Chicago too, lots of folks having the conversations about gathering data
  • A question coming up about people wondering if we want to have this data
  • Stephen did something….he has a Facebook account …first time in 11 years
  • Facebook and security the use of GPG for email notification
  • Might create a Cyberunions group too

Close out

  • Zokos.com will be free software, it is being planned it is on github in a private form as they cleanup the code
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