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WORKERS VOICE PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP | 504-657-3171 | facebook.com/neworleanswokers | SEPTEMBER

WORKERS VOICE

PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP

|

504-657-3171

|

facebook.com/neworleanswokers

|

SEPTEMBER 2016

50¢

INTRODUCING WORKERS VOICE

With this issue, the New Orleans Work- ers Group announces and publishes our newspaper: Workers Voice.

We intend that this paper will advo- cate for the political position of the US multi-national working class in its irreconcilable battle against the bil- lionaire ruling class. We call on all mili- tant workers, women and men, gay and straight to become supporters of and contributors to Workers Voice produc- tion and distribution.

Workers Voice will report on the struggle

of the workers to end this capitalist sys- tem of oppression and exploitation. We will advocate for the unity of workers of

all nationalities to build fighting unions

Malcolm Suber

led by revolutionary workers. We will

not only fight for a living wage, but we

will fight to make the working class the

ruling class so that we, the majority, can have ownership of the production and distribution of the goods and services that comes from our collective labor.

Workers Voice opposes all forms of cap- italist oppression. We will champion the struggle of the oppressed nations for the right to self-determination. We support the Black Lives Matter movement and its

fight to combat white racist supremacy

and gain full equality.

Workers Voice will fight for decent housing,

living wage jobs, quality education and healthcare for our families and communities.

Workers Voice will fight against patriarchy

and male chauvinism and for the full equality of women workers.

Workers Voice will support the struggle of the international working class and oppressed nations. We oppose imperi- alist war and the needless destruction it brings.

Workers Voice opposes homophobia and supports the LGBTQ struggle for equality and for immigrants’ rights and an end to deportations.

We call on workers to join the New Or- leans Workers Group and help us orga-

nize the workers fight for revolution and

genuine socialism!

Worker

WORKERS VOICE PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP | 504-657-3171 | facebook.com/neworleanswokers | SEPTEMBER

Correspondence

D.B.

  • I work in a factory in Harahan. I wake up at

4:30 am to be to work for 5:00 am to start

my ten-hour shift in the dingy old build- ing. In the sweltering Louisianan summer,

  • I can feel myself starting to sweat as soon

as I enter the old plant, which is always hotter than the outside. It gets hotter as the day drags on, becoming most intense at noon. The factory can reach tempera- tures of over 110 degrees. All of us workers complain about the extreme heat. The is- sue of installing an air conditioning sys- tem came up to the “big bosses”, but they choose to install a state of the art surveil- lance system instead. Our plant manager

says that he has screens in his office now

so that he can see all of us all the time and everything we do, and he’s always

watching. It’s a bit unsettling. We workers would have preferred improvements like air conditioning, but the corporate bosses made their decision. It was a non-issue to them because they are not the ones in the heat. We usually only get one 15 minute break and 15 minutes for lunch in our 10 hour day; however, since the powers that be do recognize the seriousness of the temperatures we are given an extra 15

minutes for lunch during summer. Some- thing that troubled me was that for sum- mer last year we had an extra 15 minutes added to our lunch break unconditionally, but this year we were told if we didn’t al- ternate breaks so that the machines run constantly without stopping, we would have no choice but to stay an extra 30 minutes in the day. That in itself isn’t so bad I suppose, but it’s a trend I certainly wouldn’t like to see continue onto other things, slowly adding more “necessary” changes to our workday that have us working harder for the same pay that we strangely did perfectly without the year

before. As I walk, in I greet my coworkers, many of whom have been working there for many years. Some of them are pairs of fathers and sons, mothers and daugh- ters. My grandfather worked in this plant for most of his life. My father and uncles also worked here for some time, just as I do now. For generations, some of us or our family members have been producing

continued on Page 2

THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP SUPPORTS www.facebook.com/TakeEmDownNOLA
THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP SUPPORTS
www.facebook.com/TakeEmDownNOLA

Worker Correspondence continued from Page 1

wealth for the owner of our factory and many others like it, who happens to be the second richest man in Australia with a net worth of over $10 billion. Maybe he wouldn’t be able to maintain the 2nd wealthiest spot in his country if he didn’t employ Americans, since in Australia the minimum wage for workers older than 20 is 16.87 Australian dollars ($13.55) an hour. He only has to pay us a starting wage of $11 in order to be competitive with the other factories in the area. Sad- ly, some of our coworkers can’t support themselves and their families on $11 and after our 10-hour shift ends, have to pre- pare to start their next job.

Just think About U.S. and the Annexation of Hawaii Just think About U.S. and Agent Orange
Just think About U.S. and
the Annexation of Hawaii
Just think About U.S. and
Agent Orange
Just think About U.S and the
Tuskegee experiment;
Just think About U.S and
Iran-contra
Just think About U.S and where
the interstate highways were built
and who made the decisions
Just think About U.S and Plessy
vs. Ferguson
Just think About U.S and the Dred
Scott decision
Just think About U.S and the
3/5th clause
Just think About U.S and the
Iraq war
Just think About U.S and the
Chinese Exclusion Act
Just think About U.S and the
deportation of Marcus Garvey
Just think About U.S and the Trail
of Tears
Just think About U.S and “little
boy” and “fat boy”
Now what we gon’ do about U.S.?
Enigma~Є
The
Oceti
Sakowin
(Lakota/Da-

BATON ROUGE FLOODING

You bailed out the banks, now bail out the workers 100%!

Alex Quintero

The natural disaster that struck Baton

Rouge was a flashback of the cataclysmic

events of Hurricane Katrina, and in much of the same way the government has re- acted with little to no disaster relief at all.

The U.S. Spent close to $16 trillion of

public money to bail out the banks in the 2008 market crash. One trillion dollars a

year goes to our military budget profiting

those in the business of making war. But when it comes to bailing out the peo- ple of Louisiana, especially in the Black community, FEMA gives very little. This was the case in New Orleans and now our sisters and brothers of the working class in many parishes in Louisiana are devastated.

110,000 homes were destroyed or dam- aged. Almost all applied for FEMA. But FEMA only gives a $33,000 max grant (and usually much less) if the victim can provide paperwork that may have been

lost in the floods, Only 12% had flood

insurance because these areas were not known to flood before. Also, many peo- ple have already been denied, especially

in the African American neighborhoods in Baton Rouge.

There has also been a loss of job income, businesses destroyed, and cars demol- ished. Immediate unemployment assis- tance is needed.

Disaster capitalists like contractors are “hiring” undocumented workers so they can under-pay or con them out of pay al- together. Meanwhile, thousands of work- ers are now out of jobs. There even was a fatal bus crash of an unlicensed immi- grant driver as its consequence. While the driver was jailed, we say jail the con- tractor.

This is why workers need to be for legal- izing immigrants so these workers, who are only trying to feed their families, can- not be taken advantage of and there is no incentive not to hire all workers where there is high unemployment like in the Black community.

Louisiana legislators should call an emergency session to cut corporate tax

breaks and help the flood victims’.

Workers Education Forums

Fight Against Police Terror was the title

of our first forum on August 28th at Cafe

Istanbul. It was attended by over a hun- dred people, black and white. The main speaker was Malcolm Suber, a devoted black revolutionary who has been on the front lines in the struggle against NOPD abuse for over three decades.

During his presentation, Suber explained that the main political lesson drawn from the Black Lives Matter movement is that it is spontaneous resistance to police terror that has propelled the freedom struggle to a level we haven’t seen since the 60’s and 70’s. He said “the choice

before our movement is: will we wage a

revolutionary fight to end the rule of the

billionaire ruling class, or will we contin- ue on the road of reform that guaran- tees continued police terror and murder of national minority youth on the streets

of America?”

He also noted that the police are doing exactly what the rulers want them to do. “It is their function to terrorize us and keep us in our place, in our oppressed condition.”

At the end of his talk, Suber invited sing- er Nana Nantambu on stage to lead the audience in singing the classic freedom song “We Who Believe in Freedom Can- not Rest”. Afterwards there was a lively discussion full of revolutionary energy and solidarity among the audience. At the end everyone walked out enthused, with a deep understanding of the black lives matter movement, and they were

therefore more ready for the fight against

racist police oppression.

#JUSTICEFOREricHarrisNOLA Every Tuesday 5-7 pm S. Claiborne & Washington St.
#JUSTICEFOREricHarrisNOLA
Every
Tuesday
5-7 pm
S. Claiborne &
Washington St.

Solidarity with National Prison Strike

Quest Riggs

On September 9th prisoners across the country stood up for their human rights. Walking in the footsteps of the heroes of the 1971 Attica Prison Rebellion, our caged brothers and sisters worked very hard to coordinate a countrywide prisoner strike.

Strikes took place in 26 states despite ef- forts by wardens and guards to silence and isolate militant prisoners. In some prisons striking by even a minority of the prisoners scared the authorities into stop- ping work altogether. The nation-wide strike took place in both men and wom- en’s prisons. The prisoners were applaud- ed and supported by tens of thousands of non-incarcerated people across the country.

Some prisons, including several in Florida, experienced full-scale prisoner rebellions. Of course, the ruling class media calls the prisoners rioters so that we on the out- side will ignore the just demands of the prisoners. These aren’t riots; they are re- bellions against the barbaric conditions in US prisons.

Florida prisons, like Louisiana’s, are ex- tremely overcrowded. Prisoners often

face lengthy time in solitary confinement,

which is a form of torture, and brutal

physical and sexual abuse and murder by prison guards.

New Orleans jails more people than any other city, and Louisiana has the largest percentage of people in prison in the U.S., and the U.S. has the largest rate of incar- ceration in the world. We must support the prisoners’ demands to abolish mod- ern day slavery.

WE WILL SEND WORKERS VOICE FREE TO PRISONERS AND WELCOME LETTERS FROM PRISONERS

STOP THE DAKOTA ACCESS PIPELINE!

Max Wilde

kota) people of the Standing Rock Res- ervation in North Dakota are battling a $3.8 billion oil pipeline development by Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) to protect

their main water supply, the Missouri River, and to defend their sacred land. In

the face of invasions, desecrations, and broken treaties, the occupation has unit- ed the largest coalition of Native tribes

in decades. Over 200 different tribes,

supported by thousands of protestors of all nationalities, have successfully stood their ground to protect aboriginal terri- tory and halt construction.

The pipeline, which will slice through four states (North and South Dakota,

Iowa, and Illinois), transporting 570,000 barrels of crude oil a day, is not just a threat to the Oceti people’s way of life and their future generations, but is also a potential environmental catastrophe. In just the past 5 years, pipeline spills and ruptures have released about 7 million gallons of crude oil and killed a total of 80 people. One of the largest of those spills already happened in North Dakota in 2013, pouring 840,000 gallons of oil

into a wheat field. Not only that, but as

recently as September 5th, and as near- by as Barataria, Louisiana, 5,300 gallons of oil spilled into Barataria Bay from a

damaged pipeline.

Standing Rock and other Native Amer- ican reservations have, bit by bit, been shrinking since their formation in the 1860-1880s. In the 1950s, the same Army Corps of Engineers that now approves

this latest invasion, built five dams on the

Missouri which displaced multiple native villages.

The North Dakota government, on be- half of DAPL, has arrested over 40 peo- ple. A security group (G4S) hired by DAPL has unleashed dogs on peaceful, mostly Native American protestors. At least 6 people were bitten, including a child, and these thugs have also rained pepper spray down into the crowd. De- spite these attacks, the thousands chal- lenging this construction have, day after day, stood their ground and fought back.

The Obama administration, a strong supporter of the pipeline, has bowed to nationwide pressure and issued a tem- porary halt on its construction, so the struggle continues until construction is stopped permanently. The leaders of the Oceti people have been very clear that no matter what happens, the people are not backing down. The Black Lives Matter Movement & The

Worker Correspondence continued from Page 1 wealth for the owner of our factory and many others

Congress of Day Laborers, a New Orleans organization that stands against brutal exploitation at the hands of Immigration authorities, held a 24 hour Vigil on September 1st to fight against the wrongful jailing of three communi - ty members on charges of reentry, William Diaz-Castro, Jose Isaias Lara-Ser- rano, and Jonny Manzanares. All three men leave behind spouses who spoke at the vigil. Contact the Congress of Day Laborers at the New Orleans Work- ers’ Center for Racial Justice at (504) 309-5165.

THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP

WORKERS VOICE

PAGE 4

The Capitalist Elections

Gavrielle Gemma

We need higher wages, better jobs, an end to police terror, lower rent and home

prices, good schools and a fix to the en- vironment. But will the candidate from either of the two major parties who rep-

resent the soaring profits of Wall Street do

any of this? No.

Trump is a billionaire racist who hates women and whips up anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim hatred in an attempt to get workers angry at the wrong people. Trump’s family was Nazi supporters and built its empire by racist and price goug- ing rent practices.

Clinton helped destroy the safety net for mostly women and children in the 1990’s, leaving hundreds of thousands desperate. Clinton was an ardent supporter of mass incarcerating people and called young Black men superpredators. As a senator and Secretary of State under Obama, she pushed for endless military and economic warfare, supported coups, and carried out drone bombings of civilians – for what. To enrich the oil companies and war profi- teers. She has stated she wants increased sending of U.S. troops to war.

Neither wants to touch the over $1trillion military budget which is looting our public funds by the profit making military con- tractors; instead of using our money for

the needs of the people or repair of the infrastructure. Congress is a millionaire’s club. Both Democrats and Republicans have huge personal investments in oil, banking, mil- itary, pharmaceutical and chemical com- panies. Both represent the capitalist class that is rolling in stolen profits while the liv- ing standard of all workers declines. Both are beholden to the corporate campaign contributions from Wall Street.

The growing dominance of the most right wing economic sectors - military, oil, banking and the slavish conciliation of the Democratic Party to these interests has actually been responsible for the rise of the more openly racist, openly worker hating Trumps and their ilk. Supporting either capitalist party is to keep slipping the noose over our own necks.

Every 4 years, workers, youth, retirees and national minorities are herded into

the Democratic Party by using fear of the Republican candidate. But for the past 40 years, the Democratic Party has basi- cally agreed with them. They supported and expanded some of the most horrible abuses like the Patriot Act or cutting ser- vices to fund imperialist wars, while laying

off workers and allowing companies not

to pay taxes and run-away to lower wage

THE NEW ORLEANS WORKERS GROUP WORKERS VOICE PAGE 4 The Capitalist Elections Gavrielle Gemma We need

INDIA, SEPT. 2: 1.5 million workers of all nationalities across India held the larg- est general strike in history. Solidarity to the Indian workers demanding higher wages, equal pay for women, and an end to the privatization of the economy!

countries using the military to help them. We must unite to stop Trump and all his racist right wing, anti-worker, anti-woman, anti-gay policies. Only independent grass roots, mass movement can accomplish this.

All those truly concerned with combatting racism and fascism and Trump need to take the step to the independent orga- nizing of the people and the recognition that this is a class society. The Democratic Party will not stop them. The Democrats and Republicans represent the capitalist class exclusively. No matter what words are used, they will always do what is in

the interest of amassing profits for the rich

rather than the well-being of workers and oppressed people.

That time is now to reject the whole damn system and step up to fight for what be- longs collectively to those who do all the work, create all the wealth – the working

class – and fight together.

The New Orleans Workers group is a multi-national organization of revolu- tionary workers who understand that the working class struggle for free- dom and liberation must be guided by the study of revolutionary theory and commitment to struggle. We are opposed to capitalism and all forms of capitalist oppression including impe- rialism, racism, sexism, homophobia,

and we support full rights for immi-

grants. We seek to build a new world based on the ending of capitalist ex- ploitation and founding of a genuine-

ly socialist society that guarantees the equality of all working people. Only

this future will end US imperialist war

and domination and usher in a world of human rights and self-determina-

tion for all the oppressed.

CONTACT INFO

CONTACT INFO
CONTACT INFO

New Orleans Workers Group

noworkersgroup@gmail.com / 504-657-3171