Monday, September 02, 2013

Labor Day Manifesto

Full Employment Now!
Minimum Wage $15
Health Care
Paid Vacations

Labor Day 2013.

It is fitting that on the fiftieth anniversary of the March on Washington and on Labor Day we take a moment to remember and reflect. 

We are gaining momentum. 
The "Occupy Movement is still brewing beneath our feet. 
Moral Mondays are part of our cultural fabric.
Food Service Workers demand a minimum wage of $15 per hour.

When I dreamed up this page "The New Internet Union of American Citizens", several years ago, it was on the strength of a working people's manifesto. I called it the "King's Beach Statement", because that is where I wrote that statement. You can read the statement for yourself at the referenced link above, but the long and short of it is summarized in the following statements;
1. Full Employment Now. Jobs and Job Security should be the basic plank of the social contract on which our nation is built. No one need fear loose income, loss of health care, loss of home, loss of ability to pay bills. EVERYONE WORKS. If we can bail the big financial institutions over a weekend because they are too big to fail, so then we can bail the American family when times get tough. In other words, the Unemployment Bureau should be called the Employment Bureau. Unemployment Insurance should be called Employment Insurance. Our task is to set one another at tasks that satisfy and please us and meet the needs of our fellow citizens. Our work must be honored and we must be paid according to the honor in which we hold one another.
2. Minimum Wage at least $15 per hour. Corporate greed has gotten way out of hand. The working people and middle class of this country has taken a very hard hit. Our good paying jobs have been sent overseas, leaving us with jobs primarily in the retail and service sector. Walmart and McDonalds feel as though they can exploit the worker with part-time jobs and circumvent the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). 
3. Universal Single Payer Health Care. We will settle for Obamacare for now, but we should simply extend Medicare to all American Citizens just like Senator Bernie Sanders has suggested.
4. A Moratorium on Foreclosures until all Americans who wish to work are working.
5. Three weeks paid vacation for all after two years at work. Two weeks up until then.
6. Quit picking on gay folks and other minorities. Knock off the racism, sexism and classism. We are all one country. The great American Eagle cannot fly let alone soar unless we're all pulling together.

In the meantime, let's keep up the pressure. 
The Occupy Movement is still percolating underneath our feet.
Moral Mondays are now a regular feature of our retail and food service workers.
Let's consider the occasional one day "General Strike" perhaps on Moral Mondays just to remind everyone that their cup of morning joe may cost a bit more until all of us get a share of the wealth that this country has amassed.
Lets consider a Big General Strike on Black Friday and other big shopping days.
Lets flex the muscle of the American Worker until Corporations begin to get the point. Fair wages and benefit must be built into the fabric of our common life and become the fundamental plank on which we build the social compact. 

By the way this is all happening before our very eyes. Whether spontaneously or with careful planning and organizing, it is all happening before our very eyes.

Keep up the pressure.

Happy Labor Day America.

The American Worker is regaining his/her strength.

Peace to you all,
Paul Bresnahan

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