What Could March 4th Look Like?

While we prepare to participate in the Northern/Southern California March 4th Coordinating Committee meetings tomorrow, let’s examine a strike of students and workers that happened a few years back at UC Santa Cruz.

Participants should recall the struggle that went down in the process of building for the strike: struggle amongst various Left tendencies, struggle with union bureaucracies, and struggle with student organizations to participate in the strike effort.  The results are clear in the short film Estamos Aqui.

What March 4th will look like is not yet clear.  Organizing efforts have been happening in Oakland, and folks in San Francisco are preparing as well . . . Meanwhile organizers in LA are taking steps towards establishing March 4th Committees.  It’s becoming clear that a strong left wing tendency has potential to emerge as March 4th organizers and organizations are recomposed.  Let’s keep it moving.

6 responses to “What Could March 4th Look Like?

  1. GREAT VID! snap/snap.


  2. This video is always an inspiring video to watch, lets hope we can make this happen and more!

  3. Pingback: The Need Of The Moment: Insight and Solidarity « Kloncke

  4. Remove porn spam in comment above, please.

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  5. Hi, I am very excited to find ATS and discover that you are promoting the call for a general strike. Until recently, I was a Trotskyist and supporter of the League for the Revolutionary Party. I was attacked once by a Spartacist for our propaganda slogan “Workers need a general strike.” He asked, “Do workers always need a general strike? Or just sometimes?” I tried to explain (futilely – these people are insane) that the slogan was phrased broadly and not specifically agitationally and that workers do always need a general strike as a way of building class solidarity. For all this, though, the LRP did not and does not normally raise the slogan agitationally — that is, with the aim of actually achieving a general strike in the present.

    This stems from their general outlook that union leaders can be pressured into action by their members. This is true, but now that I am moving leftward and do not consider myself a Trotskyist, I rather see this as an effect and not a goal. I do not believe it is necessary to obtain support or permission from union bureaucrats, however hard we have to battle for it, in order to carry out a general strike. In particular, the wildcat nature of May 1968 in France shows this quite well (coincidentally, not an event the LRP studies much).

    I have been saying “Students and workers need a general strike” in an explicitly agitational sense. I am fighting to push students, teachers and workers to the conclusion that we must build a general strike together in order to defend ourselves as a class and overcome the treachery of the established bureaucrats, whether they are Democrat union leaders or Trotskyist party officials.

    The situation in New York, where struggles around public education are heating up dramatically, is not such that a general strike seems immediately likely. This no longer stops me from raising the slogan. There is struggle going on, and a general strike would be the best way to wage it effectively. In that light I am hoping to use the momentum for March 4th to spread awareness of the urgent necessity of a general strike.

    I think one limitation we should strive to overcome is the parochial nature of many such strikes. The Internet helps us with organizing on a national and international scale. We need solidarity strikes across state and national lines. I am glad to see that many in California are fighting to use March 4th to build a strike. This could be exactly what we need in New York. If the strength of a citywide general strike is that workers do not break ranks and return to work until all do so together, then perhaps we can fight to extend this logic outside our city limits in the future.

    Workers in New York need a general strike in California and everywhere! Our class interests are the same. Please keep spreading the call!

  6. Pingback: Reflections on “the most radical university”: Santa Cruz student-worker organizing – April 14th 2005 « Advance the Struggle

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