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    "The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people."
    Cesar Chavez




    :: Monday, September 19, 2005 ::

    Here come the wobblies! - NEFAC Northeastern Anarchist, Canada
    The wobblies promoted the idea of the “One Big Union,” also called industrial unionism. Rather than splitting workers into trade unions--carpenters, electricians or bricklayers, for example--the wobblies insisted that all construction workers struggle together to change the construction industry.

    And they had little patience for union bureaucracy, fussing over union elections and contracts or asking the government (the National Labor Relations Board, or NLRB) for the right to negotiate.

    Instead, they adopted the slogan “Direct action gets the goods.” Strikes were to be used early and often. “General strikes” by workers across industries, and hopefully shutting down a whole city, were even better.

    And they had a reputation, not entirely deserved, for industrial sabotage. Although some workers did go in for destroying company property, the IWW concept of sabotage tended toward work slowdowns or “working to rule”--meaning adhering to job rules so carefully that work grinds to a halt. Still, Wobbly lore is full of stories of chicanery, of machines mysteriously missing belts or paint being mixed the wrong color by accident. To this day, the wobblies hold dear their mascot, “Sabo Kitty,” an angry black cat with its hair on end, which came to be a symbol for sabotage.
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