I US-amerikanska delstaten Wisconsins huvudstad Madison har protesterande människor ockuperat delstatsparlamentet och trots attacker från polisen håller man fortfarande stora delar av byggnaderna. Hela Madison är fullt med protesterande aktivister och fackföreningsmedlemmar som agerar mot nedskärningspolitik, privatiseringar och antifackliga lagar:
Last week, the capitol building in downtown Madison took on the spirit and feel of Cairo’s Tahrir Square as growing numbers of workers and students, first from Madison and then from around the state and the country, occupied the building and took over the grounds around it.
Their determined spirit–and action–pressured Senate Democrats to boycott a session where Walker and the Republicans were ready to ram through a proposal that would effectively cut state workers’ wages by 5 to 7 percent and cripple public-sector unions by virtually destroying collective bargaining.
This week, though, Republicans are vowing not to make any concessions, and Walker recruited enough police from around the state to push protesters out of sections of the capitol building. Senate Democrats are still boycotting the session, denying Republicans the quorum they need to conduct most business. But the movement against Walker’s anti-union assault needs to regain the initiative.
Walker’s threat to lay off 1,500 state workers if his proposal isn’t passed by Friday is aimed at breaking workers’ resolve. But it’s more obvious than ever what Walker is after–his premeditated intention to destroy organized labor was highlighted in a recorded conversation with a blogger pretending to be union-hating billionaire David Koch.
In the face of this all-out attack on labor, what unions, organizations and individuals do to mobilize right now will help shape the outcome of this fight.
We need to remember what turned the struggle in Wisconsin into a national battle over union rights. When teachers from across Wisconsin called in sick and instead jammed the capitol building, it showed what unions can do when they flex their muscles. Walker and his allies vilified those teachers, but popular support for the union side only grew.
What’s needed now is an action campaign involving union members and supporters across the state to raise the pressure on Walker and his billionaire backers, the Koch brothers.
I Wisconsin har människor börjat göra motstånd. Utan tvekan inspirerade av upproren i arabvärlden. Kan man störta diktatorer som Mubarak och Ben Ali genom fredliga massaktioner kan man förstås stoppa nedskärningar och privatiseringar också. Det är uppror i arabvärlden och klasskrig i Wisconsin.
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