April 30, 2012
May 1st, 2012
There are dynamic forces at work. If you had told me in early 2011 that there was going to be a global campaign of horizontally-organized resistance to Global Financial Powers, Government Corruption and the Fleecing of Workers called the "Occupy" movement, which was going to take off rapidly through internet exposure, I would say it was impossible.
When the OccupyWallSt.org domain(which is not central command, just the NYC leg of the operation that kicked it off) announced a General Strike for May 1st, 2012, I laughed. I've gotta be honest. A General Strike is the most ambitious, most dangerous tactic labor has ever employed. It's also the best one at their disposal since it actually effects 1%er profits by direct action. I was skeptical of the May Day 2012 strike, however. Mostly because Occupy isn't exactly "Labor"(although it tends to collaborate with it.)
The Largest General Strike in the United States was the Great Railroad Strike of 1877. A more recent(and notorious) one was May 1968 in France. Both were largely Wildcat(non-unionized) strikes. May 1968 in France was notable for starting with students and without a focused list of demands. Occupy started with anarchists and the unemployed and largely without a focused list of demands. So actually, this call for a May Day Strike tomorrow shares more in common with the past then it may at first seem.
So what will it look like? What will it accomplish? It's hard to say. The past can be a guide but does not often dictate the future. Many have believed the media Public Relations line that Occupy was a simple anomaly occurring late last year and ending with our paramilitary boys-in-blue restoring order(albeit with a few 'incidents' of police brutality that have still gone completely unpunished.) I'm 100% sure there will be a black-out of mainstream news coverage and suspicious twitter and facebook censorship.
Every artery I have my hand on is pulsing though. It might be a nice march, a demonstration, a show which is forgotten the next day. I'm hoping for something more. I've taken the week off of work(the first paid vacation I've ever been offered-from a small business employer) to make the most of it, whatever it will be. See you in the streets.