United Left Occupy Tour is organizing using an InterOccupy Hub.
Hub on InterOccupy
The Unified Left is hosting a Tour of the American Industrial Empire. We are calling on the Worlds 99% to join us as we call attention to the supreme concentration of power over the productive resources of America and the World.
Imagine what the 99% could do when we bring the entire financial, commercial, and industrial system under democratic control.
We could use the financial resources of JPMorgan, Citigroup, and other massive financial institutions to put millions of people back to work by rebuilding our nations infrastructure. We can invest right away in our countries future.
We could put the resources of finance and raw materials together to create a sustainable infrastructure fully integrated with the natural world. We would no longer have to wait for some financial capitalist to invest in such changes. They never will because they only use resources for growth. However, we can use resources for human needs, which in turn depend on a healthy planet.
We would no longer have to worry about infinite growth on a finite planet because we will get rid of this system of infinite growth; industry will do what people need it to do, instead of running out of control because of the coercive forces of profit competition. Production defined by people instead of by profit is the answer to this impending disaster.
Poverty and Wealth Distribution
When industries are controlled democratically the way wealth is distributed will reflect the input of all who work there. A much more just distribution of wealth would accrue as workers will decide how the resources of their workplace will be used and distributed. Will workers pay some 700 times more than others? Of course not. Would workers ship their own jobs overseas and destroy their communities? Of course not. The great poles of extreme wealth and extreme poverty will cease. The full development of each will be the condition for the full development of all.
Americans work more than anyone else in the world. We are working longer hours now than we did in the 1950’s. Think about the massive technological advances that have accumulated since then. This means that the technological infrastructure we’ve created is not being used to save labor time, but to increase it for profit.
Once industry is under democratic control we will be able to use technology to meet human needs instead of forcing humans to keep up with the speed of technological change. Capitalism is a rat race that is driving us into the ground. Imagine what we can do when we decide how that technology will be organized and put to use.
The logic of profit driven markets is ripping apart our social fabric. Alongside the advances in social media and communication technologies, such as skype, iphones, facebook, and other platforms designed to bring us together, Americans are seeing less of their families and friends in real life.
We instead peruse pictures and send messages to each other through a global village evacuated of real human beings and populated instead by electronic sighs for real human connection and belonging.
The fact is people must search for work, but work is in constant search of capital. Jobs move to more profitable areas, and people must follow jobs. Uneven development occurs as the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Families and friends are ripped apart as we all must move around from place to place looking for work. Capitalism simply considers labor another unit in the icy cold calculation for maximization of profit, moving it around where it sees fit.
People must also compete against one another to survive. We spend our lives trying to outdo our neighbors for our own personal gain, because the logic of capitalism compels it. This creates a culture of predatory individualism and collective mindedness as we all compete for the same narrow goals. It is not an individualism where we can pursue our own ends in cooperation with others; it is an individualism that forces us to constantly look at others as potential job threats and obstacles to conventional success. Success meaning owning wage slaves for ourselves.
But, when industries cooperate instead of compete, and operate because of public will instead of profit, we can end social alienation and begin the healing process. People will have more time to see their families. People will not view others as obstacles to overcome for success, but allies for the success of all. We can, by working together, begin to end the misery caused by industrial tyranny.
The Solution: Industrial Democracy
The United Left sees nothing good in an economy that is controlled by corporate managers or by politicians. Instead we want industrial democracy – industry run by its workers through direct democratic processes free from hierarchy. The greatest problem facing humankind is not the much-discussed question of production and distribution. It is the problem of power. It never has been and it never will be safe to let a few control the affairs of the many.
The big question for today and tomorrow is this: How is industry to be controlled? Who is to own industry? Who is to say whether industry is to run or stand idle? Who is to decide what is to be produced and where that product is to go? Who is to decide what services are provided and to whom? Who should control industry?
1. Should modern industry be controlled by a handful of business managers?
2. Should politicians administer it?
3. Or should those who do the work run it?
It must be one of the three. The corporate managers through their banks, their control over directorships, and their enormous influence over the public debate through the media they own and the government they control, seek to ensure their complete control over the economic life of the world.
However, we can run industry and thereby solve the problem of power, for all the power that runs this world comes from our own efforts.
The United Left sees a two-pronged strategy for creating industry world democracy now, beginning in the U.S.
Call to all Workers!
If all the workers in each of the four major corporations in all sectors of industry on the tour join in One Big Union, we can begin to solve the major problems of recession, climate change, social alienation, and working life right now. We would have a significant portion of the economy, from raw materials to public service and finance, under direct democratic control. It is simply up to you to act. Will we form the seed of the new society in the shell of the old? Or will we continue to watch the entire political and economic edifice collapse? It is up to the 99% to take control of its destiny.
Right to Industrial Democracy Federal Convention
Our founding fathers did create one powerful check against tyranny, and it has never been used – until now. The people themselves can call a constitutional convention and amend the constitution.
It is called a convention to propose amendments to the constitution. It is a single federal convention that can propose a specific amendment. The amendment can also be ratified by convention.
At the end of this tour we are calling for a march on every state legislature. We will camp out and demand that these legislatures send an application for an Article V constitutional convention, for the right to industrial democracy amendment, to congress. We then put this amendment in the constitution.
This amendment will abolish competition and make businesses cooperate instead. It will give workers the right to own and manage their workplace, electing representatives to organize production in the ways that they decide. It will bring the entire financial, industrial, and commercial system under democratic control, solving the major problems facing us today, and significantly enlarging the scope of human freedom.
Time to Act: OCCUPY THE ECONOMY The Unified Left is calling on all of the 99%, all activists and concerned workers and citizens who wish to take an active role in ending the major problems facing humanity today.
We will Occupy each of the major industrial powers in the U.S., setting up General Assemblies to further our aims, and we will work toward worker control of the industrial world, free from domination and exploitation.
What you can do
1. Show up at the nearest corporation’s headquarters at a specified date
2. Help as many others as possible show up at the nearest corporation’s headquarters at a specified date.
3. Bring signs.
4. Bring foods.
5. Bring this pamphlet.
6. Spread this pamphlet.
7. Participate in a General Assembly at each Occupation to discuss organizing Industrial Democracy now.
Right to Industrial Democracy
We the people believe that it is illegitimate to have the power of production concentrated in a small class of directors and shareholders who decide to what ends the productive forces of industry will be put to use. How the productive forces of industry are used, organized, and directed substantially impacts the well being of all persons on the planet and the planet itself. Therefore, this power must be dispersed democratically, so that the productive forces of the world can be used, organized, and directed for the purpose of meeting human needs and promoting the general welfare of all human beings, the earth, and society - instead of enriching a tiny industrial elite at the expense of the many. Therefore,
I. All workplaces will have an organizational and functional structure that is determined democratically by all those who work there.
II. In order to organize the affairs and carry out the needs of the work force, each workplace will form facilitating bodies elected to carry out and organize tasks that are of a greater scope than the local shop.
III. Each facilitating body of a higher order will contain representatives directly revocable by the unit from which they are elected.
IV. What is produced, how it is produced, and what is done with the resources and the surplus, will be decided democratically by all workers within their workplace.
V. Workers have the right to recall their representatives in order to ensure they carry out the tasks they are charged with, to prevent concentration of power in the hands of the few, and to ensure workers retain democratic control of industry.
VI. Congress will enforce these rights with appropriate legislation.