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Activists call for a nationwide general strike on February 17

  • In a column for the Guardian on Monday, American writer Francine Prose called for a “nonviolent national general strike” to demonstrate “how many of us there are, how strong and committed we are, how much we can accomplish.”
  • She wrote: “Let’s designate a day on which no one (that is, anyone who can do so without being fired) goes to work, a day when no one shops or spends money, a day on which we truly make our economic and political power felt.”
  • Calls to do just that have been circulating online recently, with activists setting Feb. 17 — the Friday before President’s Day — as the day for a #nationalstrike against the presidency of Donald Trump. Read more
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The next huge women’s protest has been scheduled for March 8. Mark your calendars and get ready to be loud about it

The organizers of the Women’s March are planning a general strike — A Day Without A Woman — on March 8, which is International Women’s Day. They made the announcement on Twitter and Instagram yesterday, hashtagging it #DayWithoutAWoman and #WomensMarch. Here’s what’s involved.

your union needs to have dues

there’s a debate on here right now that goes like this:

“we should strike on election day!”
“but it won’t do anything.”
“but historically strikes had power!”

yes. yes they did. but there’s a slight difference between then and now.

think about it. mill and factory workers in the industrial revolution worked longer hours for less pay and no benefits, and they needed those jobs to survive. why would they strike, when they had so much to lose?

they had a fucking strike fund.

why are people so afraid of striking? because if you’re in poverty, even taking a day off of work is a day without getting paid, and when you have a family to provide for, the thought of being without even those wages is terrifying. how do you alleviate that fear? you let them know that there’s a union-driven safety net. everyone contributes to the fund with their dues, and everyone draws from it according to their basic needs. sure, the funds won’t last forever, but if you plan well and keep it maintained, that gives you more bargaining power. it’s not the employers waiting to starve you out, it’s a game of chicken: your dwindling funds vs. their dwindling profits, who decides it’s not worth it first?

calling for a nationwide strike doesn’t do that because there is no safety net. you’re effectively only asking the people who can afford to take time off to strike, and ignoring everyone else. and if you really want your protests to have power, you can’t afford to ignore all those people.

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The organizers of the Women’s March just called for a general strike

  • The activists behind the Women’s March on Washington, a worldwide event that stands as the largest protest in U.S. history, announced Monday morning on Twitter that they will call for a general strike.
  • “The will of the people will stand,” the organizers announced, though the date and demands for the strike are not yet determined. 
  • The call for a general strike comes on the heels of similar calls for a nationwide strike from various organizers. Read more
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Tomorrow is “A Day Without Immigrants”– an opportunity to show your support for immigrants and resist Trump by refusing to show up or buy anything

restaurants in D.C. are preparing for “A Day Without Immigrants,” a strike aimed as showing this community’s economic power and protesting President Trump’s immigration policies. And now the campaign is spreading through social media, flyers, and word of mouth. Here’s what you need to know.

In cities around America, thousands of construction companies, restaurants, and other businesses are bracing for “A Day Without Immigrants,” a combination boycott/strike that highlights the contributions of immigrants to U.S. business and culture.

The movement is a response to President Trump’s immigration agenda, which includes a pledge to seal the U.S. border with Mexico, and a travel ban on citizens of seven majority-Muslim countries (which is now on hold).

Some businesses are closing for the day; others are staying open and pledging to contribute a share of the day’s proceeds to non-profits that aid Latino communities. In a number of cases, business owners are abiding by their staffs’ wishes, after holding votes to decide whether to open.

‘A Day Without Immigrants’ Promises A National Strike Thursday

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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Irish women are staging a nationwide strike to protest the country’s extreme abortion ban

  • In the Republic of Ireland, having an abortion is a crime punishable by up to 14 years in prison.
  • Women must travel to the U.K. to access a safe, legal abortion, even in cases where the fetus has a “fatal abnormality.”
  • So women and allies who support abortion rights are organizing a nationwide strike, scheduled for March 8, to protest the ban on safe and legal abortion. 
  • They’re calling for the Irish government to hold a referendum on the 8th Amendment, a constitutional clause that grants fetuses “the same citizenship and rights as a pregnant woman.” Read more

The first general strike will be on Friday. Here’s what it’s trying to accomplish.

  • Amidst the hundreds of protests occurring spontaneously across a broad coalition, word of a protest of a whole different kind has been sweeping the country: calls for a “general strike,” a work stoppage that goes beyond putting bodies in the streets.
  • Put together by individual organizers across the country in response to a call for a strike by author Francine Prose in a column for the Guardian, the first of such strikes will come on Friday.But it’s difficult to say exactly how wide-spread this first strike will be. 

  • There will be rallies in major cities like New York City, San Francisco and Philadelphia. But whether or not the single day strike can unify around a single message and make their point clear to the Trump administration remains to be seen. Read more. (2/16/2017 6:22 PM)

Trump’s victory has triggered the slow-motion implosion of the liberal wing of the establishment.

Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren has advocated ‘putting aside differences’ with the candidate she called a ‘pathetic coward’. AFL-CIO boss Richard Trumka has offered ‘our congratulations’ to the President elect, offering to meet him halfway on labour issues. Revelations abound of the Clinton campaign and figures in the DNC actively promoting Trump’s candidacy as a weak alternative to 'more dangerous’ discredited establishment figures in the GOP.

This rudderlessness reveals the truth behind the war of words which has dominated mainstream discourse: that the political establishment is willing to sell its working class constituents willingly down the river to close up the negligible substantive differences they have had with Trump’s ideology all along.

As the political centre scrambles to make achingly 'respectable’ compromises with dangerously racist, sexist, anti-working-class right-wing ideology, the mask falls: it’s totally clear that ordinary Americans are left entirely without any independent organisations to defend them from the storm.

We need a party of the 99%.

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Yemeni-Americans to shut down New York City bodegas in protest of Trump’s Muslim ban

  • New York City’s Yemeni-American bodega owners will shutter their shops at noon Thursday in an act of protest against Trump’s travel ban.
  • According to a Facebook page associated with the protest, an estimated 1,000 stores are expected to close across all five New York boroughs from noon to 8 p.m. Thursday.
  • “Originally, we considered starting the shutdown at 8 a.m., but the grocers they made it clear they wouldn’t be willing to close if that meant their regulars wouldn’t get their morning coffee,” Debbie Almontaser, board member of the Muslim Community Network and one of the rally organizers, said in a press release. Read more