Beating Back the Bureaucrats: A Rank-and-File Struggle for Trade Union Democracy in Argentina and its Strategic Implication

Beating Back the Bureaucrats by Jonathan PaynAuthor: Jonathan Payn | File size: 360 KB

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“Much time has been spent on the left discussing whether or not the existing unions can still be seen as capable of representing workers’ interests or whether they have been completely and irrevocably co-opted to manage and contain worker struggles on behalf of the bosses – be they private or public. Consequently, a lot of time has also been spent debating whether unions can be taken back by workers (and made to serve their interests), or whether they should be abandoned altogether in favour either of revolutionary or dual unions or so-called new forms of organisation such as workers’ committees, solidarity networks etc…”

Text from: Recomposition: Notes for a New Workerism

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“Only the Organised Survive”: A Rebel Worker Handbook

“Only the Organised Survive”: A Rebel Worker HandbookAuthor: Various | File size: 430 KB

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THE INDIGNITY OF WORKING FOR A LIVING is well known to anyone who ever has. Democracy, the great principle on which our society is supposedly founded, is thrown out the window as soon as we punch the time clock at work.

With no say over what we produce, or how that production is organised, and with only a small portion of that product’s value finding its way into our paycheques, we have every right to be pissed off at our bosses.

Ultimately, of course, we need to create a society in which working people make all the decisions about the production and distribution of goods and services. Harmful or useless industries, such as arms and chemical manufacturing, or the banking and insurance scams, would be eliminated….

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[Leaflet] Direct Action: 14 ways to improve your job

Direct Action: 14 ways to improve your jobAuthor: Unknown | File size: 98 KB

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Workers run the world. Everything would stop without our labour. Withdrawing our labour is our weapon, and the right to run things is our demand…. At the same time, most work is a bore. As it is organized in our society, most labour kills the spirit and body of the worker, not to mention the mind. But to simply call for a four-hour day at eight hours pay is not enough. Who will benefit from the automation that could realize such a demand? Who should control technology’s introduction and integration into the economy? Potentially, we can.


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Syndicalism: An International and Historical Perspective

Syndicalism: An International and Historical Perspective - Dek KeenanAuthor: Dek Keenan | File size: 330 KB

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This paper will introduce syndicalism both as an historical international phenomenon and as a contemporary international model and movement. It presupposes very little knowledge of, but hopefully some substantial interest in, the subject on the part of the reader.

What does Syndicalism mean to us as labour movement activists? It may mean the million workers in the Spanish CNT fighting with a new world in their hearts during the Spanish Civil War. It may mean the legendary Industrial Workers of the World organising the One Big Union across craft and trade, race and gender lines. It may mean a vast movement of workers across Latin America during the first half of the 20th Century. It may mean Starbucks baristas fighting today to build unions in coffee houses in New York and Santiago. But it very possibly means none of these things.

Because syndicalism constitutes one of the least understood currents in the workers movement. And yet syndicalism was the driving force of immense and powerful labour movements across the globe in the first decades of the 20th Century; from Argentina to Japan and from Australia to Portugal workers gathered under its flag. And today it represents a small, but growing, part of the international labour movement; albeit one that remains unduly obscure and marginal.

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What is Anarcho-Syndicalism?: A Selection of Writings by Rudolf Rocker

What is Anarcho-Syndicalism?: A Selection of Writings by Rudolf RockerAuthor: Rudolf Rocker | File size: 401 KB

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  • The Objectives of Anarcho-Syndicalism
  • The Methods of Anarcho-Syndicalism
  • The Role of the Trade Unions: Anarcho-Syndicalist View
  • The Political Struggle: Anarcho-Syndicalist View

This collection of writings by one of the leading theorists of Anarcho-Syndicalism, Rudolf Rocker(March 25, 1873 – September 19, 1958), is taken from two of his books, namely Anarcho-Syndicalism: Theory and Practice and his shorter work,Anarchism and Anarcho-Syndicalism.

Anarcho-Syndicalism: Theory and Practice was first published in London in 1938. In 1937, Emma Goldman had asked Rocker to write an introduction for the general public on the ideals fuelling the Spanish social revolution that was then in full swing. Within the book, Rocker offered an introduction to anarchist ideas, a history of the international workers’ movement, and an outline of the syndicalist strategies and tactics embraced at the time (direct action, sabotage and the general strike). The chapters from the book on The Objectives of Anarcho-Syndicalism and The Methods of Anarcho-Syndicalism have been included in this collection.

In 1946, Rocker wrote an abridged version of the book, entitled Anarchism and Anarcho-Syndicalism. It was published for the first time with the same title in New York in 1948. It consists of slightly revised passages from different parts of the book Anarcho-Syndicalism: Theory and Practice. This Zabalaza Books collection includes the chapters from the book on The Role of the Trade Unions: Anarcho-Syndicalist View and The Political Struggle: Anarcho-Syndicalist View.

Zabalaza Books
June 2014

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