Dividing and Conquering The Working Class

A Trump supporter made their rounds of my neighborhood this week. He said he was voting for Trump because he had had to train an immigrant to do the job that he was was getting paid 30$ an hour for so his boss could pay the immigrant 10$ an hour. He was angry because he was out of work. He never bothered to consider that the guy making 10$ an hour is living in his car with his wife and kids because he cannot afford to pay rent.

What I do not understand is why these guys cannot see that the one party benefits from this scenario is the employer. The employer gets to mistreat a guy that is afraid to speak up because he will lose his 10$ an hour job that he needs to help keep himself and his family alive. The employer gets rid of a guy that he has to pay more, including health care and retirement benefits.

And as long as the employer can keep the two guys fighting with each other, he can keep right treating his employees like feudal serfs. If the man with the know-how and the guy in need of a job stand together, maybe they could negotiate terms so they both get paid. Maybe the rate would be 20$ an hour for both of them.

But they would both have jobs and the employer would not have the leverage to ruin either one of their lives. And the two workers really do not have to like each other. When Cesar Chavez was unionizing Mexican farm workers, the big agricultural companies would bring in Filipino farm worker to break the Mexican strike.

Mexicans and Filipinos did not like each other, so they undercut each other’s attempts to negotiate. When Larry Itliong and Cesar Chavez made an agreement to respect one other’s strikes was when the farm workers began to be able to negotiate living wages and humane working conditions.

When we all stand together and insist on everyone being treated as human beings with the same basic needs is when those needs are most likely to be met.

( And Hello to FBI Surveillance Van # 157, I see you are still in the neighborhood!) Here is a quote from the FBI site on extremist groups:

The Blame Game

Placing blame is an effective way to recruit people with feelings of frustration and turn them into a group united by a sense of purpose. It enables extremists to invent an “enemy” that must be destroyed. This makes violence seem like the best solution and even a moral duty.

Extremist groups and individuals often appear in communities struggling with social or political issues. Rather than improving these situations or their own lives through constructive actions, violent extremists often place the blame on another person or group. They argue that the only solution to these problems or injustices is to violently oppose and even destroy those they claim are responsible.


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