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Newspaper Page Text
FRIDAY, SEPT. 10, 1920
The Program of Industrial Slavery
By Emil Lyons.
The capitalists of the United States, organized
in tlic National Chamber of Commerce, evidently
meant business when they adopted their program
of industrial slavery.
This program, winch calls for the open shop,
as many hours work as the workers can stand
and wages that will just keep- them and their
families alive, was submitted to a referendum
vote of all the local Chambers of Commerce in
the United States and adopted by an all but un
animous vote. That means that it has the solid
backing of the whole employed class. No doubt
there is an understanding tHat the capitalists will
stand by each other when they get in a fight on
account of this program.
That the bosses are acting upon this program
is shown by the issues which have developed in
recent strikes. There has been a stiffening of the
backbone on the part of the employers, and in
place of following the policy of compromising and
coming to an agreement at the earliest possible
moment after the development of a strike, they
arc standing like a stone wall against any com
promise on any of the essential points of their
program to enforce industrial slavery.
Fight on in C leveland.
This is indicated very clearly in two strikes
which are underway in Cleveland. The pattern
makers have been out for about four weeks and
the journeymen tailors have just gone out. Both
these organizations have had things pretty much
their own way in their industry in recent years.
They are both stronj? craft union which have
enforced the closed shop, and wage increases
whenever they have made a stand. Now they sud
denly find themselves up against a fight against
the open shop. Evidently the National Chamber of
Commerce program is being put into effect.
These strikes and other of a similar character
in other cities are but the first skirmishes in the
big battle which the united capitalist class if to
fight to put labor back in ts place. The period of
easy victories, whr.h the workers won through
out the war period ,is over. Unemployment is on
the increase. Hard times are on the way. With
the coming of the industrial crisis and growing
unemployment the conditions favorable to a vic
tory for the bosses are being created.
Plan to Reduce Wages.
If the bosr.es put over their program of in
dustrial slavery there will be a general reduction
of wages and the eight hour day will go into the
scrap heap. The good old days when the boss
hadn't the slightest hesitation of acting his part
of the czar to the limit will return.
How are the workers going to meet this pro
position? Aie they going into the battle against
the united bosses a few companies at a time, as
the patternmakers and journeymen tailors men
tioned above are doing, to the beaten piecemeal ?
Are they going to fight as crafts and have their
organizations smashed one at a time?
That is the kind of fight the bosses want. That
kind of fight makes victory certain for them.
If the workers are to beat the bosses program
of industrial slavery they will have to mobilize the
united power of the workers against the united
power of the bosses. The shop organization, shop
committee and industrial and community council
system will accomplish that.
The Way To Fight.
The way to begin the work of uniting the
workers is for the live workers in every shop to
get together and form a voluntary shop committee
for then- shop and begin agitation for a shop or
ganization and a shop committee elected by the
The shop committee of an industry should be
united in an industrial council in which sit dele
gates from every shop of the same industry in
any industrial centre and the industrial councils
for the various industries should be united in a
community council, in which sit delegates from
every industry in the community.
With such an industrial organization the work
ers can meet the united bosses and their program
of industrial slavery in a fight to the finish and
The struggle is already underway. The time
for action is at hand. They way to act is to start
work in your shop to ORGANIZE A SHOP COMMITTEE.