Nationalism and the union bureaucracy
By Jerry White, 13 December 2012
The inability of the United Auto Workers and other unions to mount any serious opposition to the anti-worker legislation demonstrates the bankruptcy of these organizations.
21 April 2011
Published here is correspondence on the SEP statement on the Trades Union Congress March 26 demonstration in London, entitled “Reject TUC’s phoney war.”
By Jerry White, 22 February 2011
In the course of the struggle in Wisconsin, the trade unions are focusing on the right to “collective bargaining,” even as they openly declare their willingness to accept all the concessions demanded by the Wisconsin governor.
By Alejandro López and Paul Stuart, 22 January 2011
Prime Minister José Luis Zapatero’s government imposed a “state of alarm” on 2,200 air traffic controllers December 4, subjecting them to military discipline to force them back to work.
By Robert Stevens, 28 August 2010
With the Conservative/Liberal Democrat government planning the most drastic attacks on the working class since the 1930s, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) is working to ensure they are imposed without opposition.
By Carl Bronski, 15 April 2010
As the strike at Vale Inco’s Sudbury mine and smelter operations enters its tenth month, the transnational mining conglomerate is stepping up its scabbing operation.
By Ulrich Rippert, 20 March 2010
The petty-bourgeois political groupings that present themselves as “left” in Greece are, through their efforts to subordinate the working class to the trade union apparatuses, demonstrating their crucial political role in facilitating the drive of the European and international financial elite to impose historic attacks on working people of every country.
By Robert Stevens and Marcus Salzmann, 17 March 2010
As the Greek government begins implementing its austerity measures, the two major trade unions federations, the General Confederation of Greek Workers (GSEE) and the public sector confederation (ADEDY), are systematically demobilising opposition to PASOK’s assault on the jobs, employment conditions and living standards of working people.
By Ulrich Rippert, 5 March 2010
The response of the trade unions in all countries to the wave of strikes and protests across Europe has been to isolate and suppress the workers’ resistance to austerity measures, block the development of a European-wide movement, and close ranks with their respective governments and the European financial elite.
By Patrick Martin, 5 March 2010
The AFL-CIO Executive Council announced this week that the union federation would provide even more financial and organizational support for Democratic Party candidates this year than in 2008, despite the anti-working-class record of the Obama administration and the Democratic-controlled Congress.
By Chris Marsden, 3 December 2009
Britain’s Socialist Worker newspaper acknowledged on November 29 that Jane Loftus, president of the Communication Workers Union, has quit the Socialist Workers Party.
By Julie Hyland, 28 September 2009
The disciplinary action taken by the public sector union Unison against several of its members raises important issues of political perspective.
By Robert Stevens and Julie Hyland, 25 September 2009
The sell-off of General Motors’ European operations, Opel and Vauxhall, to the Canadian-Russian consortium Magna has elicited a poisonous “us first” response by the trade unions involved.
By Barry Grey, 18 September 2009
At its convention this week, the AFL-CIO chose a new president. One measure of the decrepitude of the union federation is the fact that the leadership change barely registered on the public consciousness, least of all among workers.
By Carl Bronski, 10 September 2009
As the strike at mining giant Vale Inco enters its ninth week, union leaders continue to promote the illusion that the attacks launched by the transnational corporation on the 3,300 striking workers is due to the fact that the company is headquartered in Brazil.
By Robert Stevens, 22 June 2009
On June 19, 647 construction contractors were sacked at the Lindsey Oil Refinery construction site, in Lincolnshire, England.
By Robert Stevens, 16 June 2009
Last week, administrators PriceWaterhouseCoopers announced that nearly all 850 workers employed by the Birmingham-based van maker LDV are to be made redundant.
By Paul Mitchell, 12 June 2009
Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union workers yesterday ended a two-day strike on the London Underground against plans by the company and its parent body Transport for London to cut over 1,000 jobs.
The Opel fraud
By Dietmar Henning, 6 June 2009
The German government, the IG Metall trade union and company works councils are attempting to portray the deal struck by General Motors, Magna and the Russian state bank Sberbank as a success, although 11,000 jobs are to be slashed, a number of European GM plants closed down, and drastic wage cuts imposed on the remaining workforce.
By Tom Eley, 4 June 2009
A recent column by New York Times labor reporter Steven Greenhouse portrays the UAW as an antagonist of the Big Three, capable of advancing the interests of its workers. The organization’s history over the past four decades proves otherwise.
By Jerry White, 23 May 2009
The transformation of the United Auto Workers into a business entity is the culmination of decades of betrayals and degeneration in which the UAW apparatus developed material interests separate from, and hostile to, the “members” it claimed to represent.
By Stefan Steinberg, 19 May 2009
ETUC protests on Saturday aimed at covering up their nationalist tracks. To this end, the union bureaucrats are quite prepared to utter denunciations of the finance markets, but these criticisms should not be taken seriously.
A PR stunt in the defence of British economic nationalism
By Robert Stevens, 19 May 2009
On Saturday, Britain’s largest trade union, Unite, organised a demonstration in Birmingham in the West Midlands which was attended by about 5,000 people.
By Jerry White, 15 May 2009
This week’s “Keep It Made In America” rallies were aimed at diverting popular anger over mass layoffs and concessions in the auto industry and channeling opposition down the reactionary path of economic nationalism and militarism.
By Julie Hyland, 7 April 2009
The No2EU platform of populist nationalism is the outcome of the protracted degeneration of the labour and trade union bureaucracy and its incorporation into the capitalist nation state.
By Julie Hyland, 7 April 2009
While the specific origins of No2EU are unclear, its pedigree is firmly on that wing of the political spectrum associated with the Conservative Party and “little Englander” nationalism.
By Robert Stevens, 21 February 2009
A report from the industrial tribunal ACAS into the dispute at the Lindsey oil refinery in Lincolnshire has exposed union claims that British workers’ wages and conditions were being undercut.
German union seeks to divide European and North American GM workers
20 February 2009
The actions of the Opel shop stewards and IG Metall bureaucrats exemplify the reactionary logic of economic nationalism.
By Robert Stevens, 18 February 2009
Recent unofficial strikes at power stations and oil refineries across the UK and an official walkout on February 11 were conducted on the basis of the nationalist demand of “British Jobs for British workers.”
7 February 2009
The Socialist Party and Morning Star have claimed victory in the “Britons first” refinery dispute. But at what cost?
5 February 2009
The strike at the Lindsey Oil Refinery in Lincolnshire, Britain, on the basis of a nationalist program of defending “British jobs for British workers” raises fundamental issues for the working class internationally.
By Julie Hyland, 5 February 2009
The refinery strikes over jobs for “Britons first” have become the focus for a shift to protectionism by the trade union bureaucracy, which is also finding expression within the Labour government.
By Robert Stevens, 4 February 2009
The Socialist Party’s demand for “Union controlled registering of unemployed and locally skilled union members” is only window dressing for a “Britons first” policy.
By Julie Hyland, 3 February 2009
The Stalinist Communist Party and the Socialist Party are seeking to defend the demand for “British jobs for British workers” at the centre of the oil refinery dispute.
No concessions! No job cuts!
By Socialist Equality Party, 19 December 2008
Seventy years ago auto workers in Canada and the US joined forces to found the UAW because they recognized that to fight the giant auto companies they needed to unify their struggles across the Canada-US border. Today in the area of integrated global production--where the transnational corporations systematically seek to pit workers against each other, placing production wherever the greatest profits can be wrung from the workers--auto workers cannot take a step forward unless they consciously organize themselves as an international force, organizing industrial and political action across national boundaries and continents.
18 December 2008
With anger among auto workers against the politicians, the companies and the UAW leadership growing by the day, both the Democratic Party and the union are attempting to whip up economic nationalism as a reactionary diversion.