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WALKOUT FOR A #FREEOAKLAND TODAY, 3:30 PM, FRUITVALE BART

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AS Hosts Analyses & Debates on the Movement against Police Violence

We will be hosting a special debate on the most recent cycle of struggle against police violence sweeping the nation in the wake of the Mike Brown and Eric Garner decisions.

watch this space for updates!

JOIN IWW WHOLE FOODS AND ADVANCE THE STRUGGLE FOR A FUNDRAISER EVENT 12/12, 6PM in SF

There are rallies and protests currently raging across the Bay Area in solidarity with all those killed by police murder, but it is important to take a little time out of the week to attend this very important fundraiser to support great class struggle organizing occurring here in the Bay.  We have a number of pieces lined up that will clarify some of our ideas on the current wave of protests so please check back soon.  See you at the fundraiser and in the streets!

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Friday December 12th, 6pm-9pm
@1243 Potrero Ave. @ 24th Street in San Francisco
Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/303501446512608/304512473078172

Last month, a group of courageous workers at Whole Foods in San Francisco announced their union to management and demanded a much-needed wage increase for all Whole Foods workers. Taking on a corporate chain with 400 stores in three countries ain’t easy, but these workers have already won a wage increase for workers in San Francisco and have put the spotlight on Whole Foods’ doublespeak about social responsibility and the “happiness of their employees.

But the fight is far from over. The Whole Foods workers have vowed to pursue the full $5 an hour raise they demanded and will be forging ahead for better scheduling policies, paid time off and more. They have come far in a short period of time BUT NEED YOUR HELP!

The fight at Whole Foods is the fight for a better life for all workers. The industrial Workers of the World has a tested record of organizing workers iwth an eye toward organizing all workers as a class.

There will be speeches from workers involved and we’ll be providing food and entertainment. We are asking for a $20 donation, and the event is free for Whole Foods workers. None will be turned away for a lack of funds, but please donate what you can. All money raised will go to the workers’ organizing fund. Let’s build a working class movement that can win, together!

For more information about IWW Whole Foods campaign see: wfmunite.com
Contact: 415-985-4499(4IWW) or wfmunite@gmail.com
Event sponsored by: IWW Whole Foods, Advance the Struggle, Just Wages Network (JWN), NLG L&EC

Emergency Response to Pigs Who Killed Eric Garner (All Week!)

From blackmask1312:

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https://www.facebook.com/events/669784216473687FTP2

Oakland Demonstration After Darren Wilson Verdict!

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On the day of the verdict, whether or not the grand jury decides to indict Darren Wilson – the cop who killed Mike Brown – we will be out on the streets at 14th and Broadway at 7pm. We do so to show our solidarity with Mike Brown  and the militants of Ferguson, who withstood the brute force of the state while bravely fighting the white supremacist power structure that treats black life as disposable.  Their actions have inspired a movement all across the country and the world to challenge the daily oppression faced by black and brown working class people.

Whether or not this cop is indicted won’t change the repressive nature of the state and capital, but what this tragedy has shown is the revolutionary potential of concerted action in the street.  The militants of Ferguson have  directly faced the state, have rejected community and business leaders’ calls for pacification, and, when the cameras left, continued to do the intensive community building to keep the movement strong.  But where will they and the national movement against police brutality go from here?

The experience in the Oscar Grant struggle has shown the need for an organized struggle that moves beyond merely reacting to moments of outrage and court dates, and develops a sustained movement and organization of black and brown proletarians that can challenge all instances of police brutality that occur in our city and beyond.  This isn’t done by pandering to the state and it’s courts, non-profit leaders, self-appointed community leaders, or the “business community,” but by developing a revolutionary organization composed of working class militants who are steeled in the day to day struggles in the streets, their communities, and their workplaces.

When a black life is lost every 28 hours by the hands of cops and racist vigilantes, when stop and frisk is becoming the new normal, when prison populations are overflowing with black and brown people,  families broken up by deportation, and jobs are few and far between, this movement seems more relevant then ever.

Below the jump, check out a dope track entitled War Cry by Tef Poe, a rapper who has been on the front lines of the struggle in Ferguson.  This is sure to be a protest anthem.  See you in the streets..

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Get up! Get down! Fast food workers run this town!

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Oakland, CA – On September 4th, 2014 at 14th & Broadway, a key site for the Oscar Grant rebellions and Occupy Oakland, fast-food workers and organizers were arrested after rallying and protesting for $15 an hour and demanding unionization of their workplaces.  This was part of a national day of action. This day of action was the 7th strike since this campaign started in Chicago 2012 by SEIU and other political forces, with 150 similar protests taking place in major urban cities.  Through polls and other media forms, the public has shown serious support for higher wages in the fast food industry, thus opening the possibility of a public and political campaign to organize fast-food workers. Consequently, in the 1 year and 10 months since its inauguration — this effort has generated notable worker actions with repression mostly kept in check. Working off of the Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938, the campaign utilizes many legal avenues and creates favorable conditions to breathe class struggle life into the fast food workplace, potentially opening windows for thousands of these workers to be armed with a ‘politics of struggle’ in the workplace. The combination of advocating unionization of the low-wage workplace through direct action, and publicly fighting for a higher wage can be a functional framework for getting working class struggle off the ground. Not surprising, raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour has been a position generating national momentum. These positive developments still face the politics of the campaign and its organizations. Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is a central political force of the campaign, and in short has built a movement set on union expansion that subordinates the potential working class power in the workplace.       Continue reading

RALLY TODAY (10/14/14) TO DENOUNCE THE DISAPPEARANCE AND MURDER OF MEXICAN STUDENTS

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On September 26, after murdering six teacher education students (normalistas) the municipal police of Ayotzinapa in the state of Guerrero,Mexico also kidnapped 43 other students whose whereabouts are still unknown – and remain disappeared. On October 4th, unmarked graves were discovered with more than 28 charred bodies. The latest reports indicate that they are remnants of the 43 arrested students. Various accounts of the facts from to witnesses and security cameras, indicate that the students were delivered by the municipal police to drug gangs to be killed.

This joint action of different sectors of the Mexican political apparatus (PRI and PRD in this case) together with elements of organized crime has raised levels of repression and impunity to unprecedented levels. The families of these young people, students, teachers, and many other groups in Mexico have condemned what happened and are demanding justice. There are a many actions being called throughout Mexico, and around the world.

Join us to show our solidarity with the struggle of the Mexican people against these crimes.

October 14, 2014, 4:30pm at the Consulado General de México en San Francisco (532 Folsom St, San Francisco, California 94105)

 

Justice for the fallen students!

They took them alive, we want them back alive!

Trial and punishment for those responsible!

Stop the cooperation of local, regional and national governments with elements of organized crime!

Endorsed by: Classroom Struggle, Left Party, Advance the Struggle and Oakland Education Association

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A police helicopter flies overhead as the Guerrero state capital building burns after it was set on fire by protesting college students in Chilpancingo, Mexico. (Photo: AP)

 

From the Freedom Summer to Ferguson Event Video

From the Freedom Summer to Ferguson-Our recent event, “From the Freedom Summer to Ferguson,” was a great success and many have asked for a video from that night.  After working through a few technical difficulties, we are happy to provide a video from our event below the jump.

There was a range of topics discussed, from the experiences in the Freedom Summer to how these lessons relate to contemporary struggles for racial liberation.  If you are interested in bringing this event to your campus or community, please feel free to contact us at bay.strikes@gmail.com. Enjoy.

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Event! 9/24/14: From the Freedom Summer to Ferguson: Reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Summer and the Struggle Today

 Advance the Struggle along with La Peña Second Generation proudly announce an exciting event on the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Summer.  The event will take place on Wednesday September 24th, 6:30pm at La Peña Cultural Center (3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA).  Below is a description of the event and the leaflets for the series.  Hope to see you there! 

With the recent protests and riots in Ferguson against the killing of Michael Brown by a white police officer, the issue of racial oppression has been thrust to the forefront of American popular consciousness.   It is telling, that events in Ferguson happened 50 years after the Freedom Summer movement descended on Mississippi to fight black disenfranchisement by building black political power.  Critical lessons were drawn from the Freedom Summer experience, such as the brutality of the state and it’s functionaries, the treachery of the Democratic Party towards black political demands, and the need to build independent political power and organization to challenge the structures of white supremacy.

Similarly, in Ferguson we have seen the deployment of the National Guard and the full repressive apparatus of the state to contain legitimate outrage by disenfranchised black residents over the killing of Mike Brown.  Now that the larger protests have subsided, Democratic Party operatives are calling for a renewed voter registration drive for black residents in Missouri and the South to channel their rage into votes for the Democratic Party machine.  But it is important to remember that this is the same party that houses both Missouri Governor Jay Nixon and his close political ally Jeff Roorda, a vocal police supporter and the man behind the Darren Wilson legal fund support page.  We have to ask: is this the only option?

This event will shed light on the insights from participants in the Freedom Summer on these critical questions in order to help inform the struggle against racial oppression today.

From the Freedom Summer to Ferguson-

Skype Event Announcement (8/23)! Turkish Revolutionaries on their Experiences in Taksim Square!

Since 2011, countries around the world have had historic upsurges and have gained serious insight into the dynamics of anti-capitalist struggle in this period.  Advance the Struggle along with La Peña Second Generation proudly presents a monthly Skype series with revolutionaries from across the globe to discuss these massive social movements.  

The sixth session will involve militants from the Gezi Park protests and the ongoing movements in Turkey.  The event will take place on Saturday August 23rd, 12pm noon at La Peña Cultural Center (3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA).  Below is a description of the event and the leaflets for the series.  Hope to see you there!

Come Saturday August 23rd at 12:00 to hear Turkish revolutionaries who will skype about their experiences in the wave of struggles at Taksim square in Instanbul. As protesters were evicted from the square, sizable protests emerged, confronting the government. Soon after, a wave of different movements, fighting for workers rights, freedom of the press, all ascended with force. A presentation will begin followed up by direct discussion with the Turkish revolutionaries.

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Below is a video by Brandon Jourdan of Global Uprisings entitled, “The Taksim Commune: Gezi Park and the Uprising in Turkey,” which gives a fantastic first hand look at the escalating social movements for urban space and against political repression.  Enjoy!

Taksim Commune: Gezi Park And The Uprising In Turkey from brandon jourdan on Vimeo.

Brenner and Weissman on the ILWU

The following article by Suzi Weissman and Robert Brenner was published earlier this week in the Jacobin online magazine. It’s a great overview of the past few years of ILWU’s struggles, the Longview uprising, the relationship between militant workers and various Occupies (Portland and Oakland in particular) and the treacherous role of the ILWU international.

One of the big questions that we’re left with after reading this piece is: what are pro-revolutionary activists and militants supposed to do in a situation where union leaderships are generally playing conservative roles, and when even those leaders who play more positive, militant, roles end up getting smashed?  What does it mean, concretely, that an “aroused rank-and-file” is the only means for the working class, and trade unions in particular, to get our of this slump?  

Our comrades have written about similar issues and begun to tackle these questions in the past years and generated debate, discussion and even controversy – so we welcome continued interventions into the important strategic discussion and debate.

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Longview, Washington

Unions That Used To Strike

by Robert Brenner and Suzi Weissman

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union, once known for its militancy and political radicalism, faces a choice between nurturing rank-and-file power and a slow, painful death.

In early July, 120 mostly poor and immigrant port truckers set up picket lines at three trucking companies in LA-Long Beach Harbor, extending their longstanding campaign to unionize. The next day, workers from the powerful and historically militant International Longshore and Warehouse Union honored the truckers’ picket by walking off their jobs, immediately shutting down three waterfront terminals.

The dockworkers had found themselves contractually free to refuse to cross the port truckers’ line, when their union’s agreement with the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) had expired a short time before.

But almost immediately, a waterfront arbitrator ordered the longshoremen back to work. The ILWU had suddenly and without warning extended their agreement with the PMA for three days. Following the rules of their own contract, the union told its members to cross the truckers’ pickets and return to their jobs.

This action was in line with the ILWU’s informal pact with the PMA to maintain the flow of work after their contract had run out, and it snuffed out any potential the embryonic solidarity of the longshore workers and port truckers might have had to shift the balance of power between themselves and their employers.

In a small way, it encapsulated the two previous years of the union’s evolution. Continue reading

Logistics, Circulation, Class Struggle and Communism Reader

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Part of our regular practice together is engaging in short term studies of relevant questions coming up on the pro-revolutionary left.  One of our recent studies has been centered on the strategic importance of sites of capital circulation as places where pro-revolutionary activists and proletarians should focus our intellectual and practical energies.

We’re offering up a formatted version of various texts that have already been published as well as a powerpoint we’ve used among ourselves to help frame the texts.

The texts in question are from Endnotes, Mute, Degenerate Communism and Libcom.  We give props and appreciation to those authors and publications for putting out important theoretical and strategic pieces to help pro-revolutionary activists around the world clarify our thinking.

Let us know what your thoughts are if you’re studying similar stuff, ways in which you’ve formatted study packets, and other thoughts.

Reader and presentation after the jump.  Enjoy.

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Sin Patron – The Workers Movement and the World Cup (Video)

We are happy to share this video from Ian Steinman, a comrade currently residing in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  In it, he analyzes the development of the working-class movement in Brazil in the context of the recent World Cup soccer tournament that took place. He takes us through the various worker, student, and indigenous struggles against the displacement, gentrification, high cost of living, and lack of social services that have intensified with the government’s decision to host the World Cup in Brazil. In addition, Ian breaks down the various social forces in the resistance movement, the evolution of political tactics on the street, and the possibility of cross-sectoral rank-and-file militancy. 

Come here from Ian at our Revolutionary Skype Series event occurring this Saturday July 26th, noon at La Peña Cultural Center (3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA). We appreciate his work and thank him for bringing to light the process of the Brazilian working-class’ political re-awakening. 

For more information about the event see here.

Skype Series Event! What did Brazil’s workers’ struggle look like leading up to the World Cup? (7/26)

Since 2011, countries around the world have had historic upsurges and have gained serious insight into the dynamics of anti-capitalist struggle in this period.  Advance the Struggle along with La Peña Second Generation proudly presents a monthly Skype series with revolutionaries from across the globe to discuss these massive social movements.  

The fifth session will involve a militant currently participating in the protests around the World Cup in Brazil.  The event will take place on Saturday July 26th, noon at La Peña Cultural Center (3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA).  Below is a description of the event and the leaflets for the series.  Hope to see you there!

Sao Paulo metro workers, Rio de Janiero airport workers & bus drivers in Natal all on strike while huge popular mobilizations were held throughout the country. Join Advance the Struggle and La Pena 2nd Generation for a Skype conversation with Ian Steinman, activist in Rio de Janiero, about this wave of struggle in Brazil, its relationship to the world’s most popular event, and the current state of the movement as the cup comes to an end.

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Dewey Academy in Danger of Displacement: Gentrification and the Oakland Unified School District

CLASSROOM STRUGGLE

Dewey Academy in Danger of Displacement:

Gentrification and the Oakland Unified School District

By Aram Mendoza and N. Finch in collaboration with Dewey teachers

Displacement of long-time, low-income residents due to gentrification has been an all too common story in the Bay Area recently.  Now the same insidious process is targeting some of the most “at-risk” students in Oakland.  Over the past two weeks, in the end of school rush, the Oakland Unified School District’s administration revealed they have been in close discussions with gentrifying developers that puts Dewey Academy, one of the public continuation high schools in the OUSD, in the cross-hairs of real estate agents and developers.  The developers are already planning a 24 story luxury condo building overshadowing Dewey and now want to add Dewey and the old OUSD headquarters to the project.  What follows is an overview of the situation, why it’s problematic, how it’s situated…

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