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The IP’s Don’t Have the Courage to be a Labor Movement –

Samuel Gompers, Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, Ghandi, Rosa Parks, Lady in White, A. Philip Randolph, Frances Perkins, John L. Lewis, Cesar Chavez, Eugene Debs, Jane Addams, Florence Kelley, et al.

MOVEMENT – something you are a part of that you may never see the benefits of! It is greater than you!

Now look at these names of our General Presidents below – do you see any of them that rise to the level of MOVEMENT caliper, and in line with those “LEADERS” listed above!!

James P. “Bud” McCourt, Newton Jones, James Boland, Lonnie Stephenson, James P. Hoffa, Frank Christensen, Eric Dean, Daniel E. Stepano, Kenneth E. Rigmaiden, Kinsey Robinson, Joseph Sellers, Jr., Mark McManus, Terry O’Sullivan and James T. Callahan; along with their point man Sean Mc Garvey preside over a totally failed culture of Value on Display! A business model of selling! Most of the above International Presidents have been hand-picked by their predecessor, or from a small list of wannabes. All flow from a failed pecking order dating back decades. It is a political culture and is not a cauldron of our “best” – elected from an unencumbered and almost universal BS election. With platitudes and loyalty to a fault as the norm exalting our various IP’s. The trades version of Trumps military parade!  So, understand that when we may say that an induvial leader is good – our best leaders still exists in a failed political culture which has hijacked the energy of the membership; and turned them into employees of a temp agency!

Truly great senior leaders would offer a vision of a MOVEMENT. Put themselves in a position to challenge for leadership based on a shared vision of workers rights. They would speak – sometimes in opposition – to the status quo. Not behind close doors, where they risk nothing, but on the convention floor, or agent’s meetings. Not happening now for decades. All fall in line.

All the IP’s believe that “strength – holds an organization together”. That’s how they preside over their respective unions. All continue to serve and perpetuate losing – not only in market share, but the Middle-Class vision that was once the Trades mission! All continually concede to managements demands; and have put their respective organizations in a position of taking whatever crumbs politicians give them!

All crush any opposition with an Iron Hand that makes Trump look like an amateur. Many have learned how to, over decades of mentorship; and all believe in their absolute right to rule with an Iron Hand. Some use the Velvet Glove style of ruling and/or in using surrogate hacks as an extensions of their power.

The Building Trades are littered with members who dared to ask questions and challenge a decision. Unions and DC who refuse to sign concessionary agreements. Conventions with stacked decks. Resolutions buried and derailed by stacked committees. We as union members get a leader picked from among a narrow group, and not from electing from among a robust and dynamic membership!

The job of IP, and of all senior leaders, reveal their fundamental character! Organizing is now recruitment and maintaining enough hours to be a viable temp agency. Blitzing my ass – it is recruitment. The trades have next to zero ability to impose their will on management.

Recruited employees join for a check – and not for the shared mission of a MOVEMENT transforming entire sectors of workers. Being part of something bigger than ourselves! We do not champion the “VALUE” of a living wage, benefits and safe working conditions for all. We cede all of the above to be competitive. That very word, competitive – in and of itself demonstrates that an Organizer isn’t an Organizer, when the Organizer cites the word competitive. In every way and form they are enabling the race to the bottom. Helping IP’ to create sub classes of workers to be competitive, to cede more and more wages, benefits and conditions. No Organizer uses that word, an Organizers mission is to have a seat at the table via a CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement). Our Founders took on management – not roll over to it. It developed the power of people to have a say in the work place and in the political universe.

The job of International Presidents reveals character – and that character is political and being Iron Handed for many decades now.

Yes, many young people want a union – a MOVEMENT! And until that comes along they will take a check!

“if you see a good fight – get in it”

Danny L Caliendo
Labor Rising/Labor Combat

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