presentation by Barry Weisleder on Working Class Politics at the Education for Activists conference in Toronto, November 2019.
I taught high school for 35 years, but let me assure you this is not a civics class. Feel free to take notes. The only test will be life itself. I will talk about the federal election. First, let’s consider what is working class politics.
It begins with the fact that society is class divided. There are two main classes:
1. The working class is at least 85% of society. We sell our labour power to survive. Workers and nature are the source of all wealth, but we possess nearly zero economic and political power.
- The capitalist class, the less than 1% of society, produce almost nothing and have nearly total control of economic and political decision making, exercised through their state apparatus. The self-employed and managerial petty bourgeoisie, the intermediary 10 to 14% of the population, cling to the coat-tails of the capitalist class. They do its bidding. In a deep crisis the petty bourgeoisie will split between the main classes. Most will go over to the working class if there is a mass revolutionary party.
by Julius Arscott
The Workers Action Movement, a grass roots alliance of labour militants that fights concessions bargaining and demands greater union democracy, is running a slate of candidates for top positions in the Ontario Federation of Labour. The vote will occur at the OFL convention in Toronto’s Sheraton Centre Hotel, November 25-29, with about 2,000 delegates expected to attend.
WAM candidate for OFL President is CUPE Local 5167 external vice-president Barry Conway, who got 17 per cent of the votes when he ran for the OFL top position in 2017. Conway is also a member of the IWW. Kurt Young, from Sheet Metal Workers’ Union, Local 30, a picket captain in one of the many strikes that recently rocked the building trades in Ontario, and a leading member of Socialist Action, is vying for the OFL Executive Vice-President spot. WAM hopes to run a candidate for Secretary-Treasurer as well.
Statement of the NDP Socialist Caucus on October 17, 2019
For an NDP Government. No Coalition with the Liberal Party. For Independent Working Class Political Action. No to ‘Strategic Voting’ and Lesser-Evilism.
As the October 21 federal election draws near, opinion polls and mainstream pundits point to the likelihood of a minority-led Parliament. Increasingly, there is talk of a coalition government. Andrew Scheer, leader of the Conservative Party, warns that the only way to stop a spend-thrift Liberal-NDP coalition is to vote Tory. The Tories threaten massive cuts to public services, and a deepening of the climate crisis. Liberal leader Justin Trudeau is exposed as a corrupt law breaker, a promise betrayer, and a pipeline buyer. Both parties, plus the ‘neither left nor right’ Greens, the openly racist People’s Party, and the bourgeois nationalist Bloc Quebecois are all in the pocket of one or another segment of the business class.
We of Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 2 are committed to free public transit in the city of Toronto and beyond. No one should have to pay for transit.
The fact is that right now Doug Ford and his Tories are sabotaging our city and our province. They’re no government of the people. They are a bosses’ government, and they’re attacking workers and poor people in every way—on the job, in education, in health care… the list goes on. Ford also has an axe out for public transit. His “upload” of the TTC is a step toward privatization, undermining the public for the profits of a few.