Fascists Can't Exist With Unions
Your Invitation For Office Hours
Hitler was not a Socialist, and destroyed the trade unions
In 1935, FDR passed The National Labor Relations Act ushering in America’s Golden Age of union organizing which …
Guaranteed workers’ rights to form trade unions.
Guaranteed a trade union’s right to iron out a contract with management that establishes a minimum basic agreement for all employees.
Guaranteed a trade union’s right to FORCE management to negotiate a union contract.
Guaranteed a trade union’s right to strike, as well as use the threat of a strike as a cudgel to FORCE management to buckle.
It also set up the National Labor Relations Board to monitor union elections as well as enforce labor laws.
Passed two years after Hitler’s rise to power …
It also inoculated American workers against the fever of fascism and saved our country. Because a real union worker can spot a fascist the minute they open their rancid mouths.
The only antidote to fascism is the workers’ ability to organize
When workers have the POWER to demand safer conditions, better pay for shorter hours as well as the POWER to shut down any industry that fails to meet those demands, they NEVER succumb to the temptations of a Strong Man. (Or woman)
Because Unions give workers the POWER to be their own Strong Man. (Or woman.)
Union workers see right through Strong Men like Vicktor Orban, Ron DeSantis or Donald Trump.
Union workers immediately recognize who exactly that Strong Man is. He’s your boss. And your boss is full of shit.
Your boss is a fascist.
Your boss feeds you lies to keep all the power for himself and his cronies.
He will divide the workplace by convincing individual workers that they’re special and others aren’t.
He uses threats and intimidation to convince everyone that some of you are dragging us down and “have to go.”
He will blame failure on everyone but himself.
He will convince you that this job is about everything other than what he promised the job would be when you took it.
He will spy on you.
He will keep you in the dark.
He will prey on your fears and self doubt so you never challenge his authority.
He will make sure you never feel secure.
He will distract with birthday cake and free dinners in lieu of higher wages and benefits.
He will strip workers of their identity, and confuse the power imbalance by calling them “partners.”
He will insist there’s more to this job than wages.
He will say this job is about building community, not money.
He will instill a sense of pride in the company you work for.
He will insists it’s not a job, it’s a spiritual quest where the focus is on serving others, not earning a livable wage.
Forget health and dental, this is about improving the lives of our customers.
He will trick workers into believing that its disloyal to ask for more money.
This job, unlike all other jobs, gives you purpose.
Bringing up pensions and workplace safety is tacky and mundane compared to what we’re all “trying to build together.”
Your boss, by definition, is a fascist. And real union workers know that.
Unions empower the workers, they remind Americans that there is no such thing as self sufficiency without collectivization. You cannot do it alone. And even if you could, why?
President Biden’s Anti MAGA Address
Last night, President Biden addressed the rising threat of right wing authoritarianism. He spoke of a Trump fueled passion for fascism boiling over into the Republican Party.
Biden is right. But he didn’t go nearly far enough.
When it comes to fascism, this Republican Party checks all the boxes.
Professor Adnan Husain said Biden only offered bromides last night, refusing to address why so many Americans are easily swept up by the fervor of fascism.
Because there’s no union to sweep them up instead.
Biden’s speech was pretty much the tip of a spear that only has a tip
Later on, Professor Harvey J. Kaye, who’s latest book is “FDR on Democracy,” clearly articulated what all my guests believed when he said that if Americans are worried about the sanctity of our republic then it’s imperative, between now and the Midterms, for Biden to draw a direct line between democracy and the power of labor unions.
For years Professor Kaye has been coming on our show and beating the same drum:
Democracies die without strong trade unions!
And fascism only succeeds when corporations control the workers.
That’s why Hitler took a wrecking ball to trade unions.
Hitler was a fascist, not a Socialist. (More about that Republican lie in a second.)
Fascists, by definition, loathe trade unions
Hitler took power in January of 1933. By May of that year his storm troopers raided trade union offices, arrested their leaders and confiscated their funds. Within one year:
All unions except the purposely toothless German Labor Front were completely shut down.
Collective bargaining was outlawed, citizens were forbidden from joining to negotiate or DISCUSS wages or working conditions.
Anyone who tells you Hitler was a Socialist is a Nazi
If you don’t read, if you’re not educated, if you lack internet literacy, you know, the entire GOP base, you can be taught Hitler is a cautionary tale of Socialism’s excesses.
But even a cursory study of history, based on the writings of accredited historians who don’t get their funding from Cato or the Heritage Foundation, will tell you that just two months after taking office, Hitler outlawed the Communist Party.
Hitler was not a communist, he was not a socialist. He was a fascist, which by its very definition is the antithesis of being a Communist or a Socialist.
Socialism is a strong DEMOCRATIC government run by and for the workers.
Fascism is a strong ANTI-DEMOCRATIC government run by and for the rich and powerful.
The rich and powerful can’t be voted into power. There’s too few of them. So fascism can ONLY be ANTI-DEMOCRATIC.
Hitler was a fascist.
You can’t be a fascist and a Socialist or a Communist.
That’s why Hitler sided with Mussolini and not Stalin.
(The Molotov—Ribbentrop Pact of 1939 was not, as Fox News viewers are led to believe, Hitler’s full embrace of Communism. It was Hitler tricking Stalin into dividing up Poland.)
Hitler rounded up the Communists and socialists into concentration camps where they were worked to death and then gassed.
HITLER WAS NOT A SOCIALIST!!!
Yes, Nazi is an acronym for the National Socialist German Workers' Party. And yes, Hitler early on at times called himself a Socialist the same exact way Donald Trump calls himself a Christian.
Here’s a little secret. Fascists lie. Especially when they’re running for office.
Before he was the Führer, Hitler was a politician. Joseph Goebbels, the father of modern propaganda, taught him that Socialism sounds better than fascism.
It’s called branding. Instead of Schicklgruber, he called himself Hitler. Instead of fascist he called himself a Socialist.
Because you can’t get elected Chancellor by telling Germans you’re going to outlaw unions, arrest their leaders and confiscate all the dues.
You can’t get elected Chancellor telling Germans you’re going to outlaw rival parties, and eliminate habeas corpus.
You can’t get elected telling voters that this is going to be the last vote they ever cast.
Hitler didn’t want to give away the surprise.
Fascism happens imperceptibly. It’s a slow, gradual erosion of democracy where nobody ever realizes they’re living under a fascist regime until the country is reduced to rubble and you turn to your neighbor and say, “What was that? The last 12 years. What was that?” And your neighbor says, “I think it was fascism. Can you help me my find my leg?”
If you still think Hitler was a Socialist, sit down, shut up, and read the following:
The anti-intellectual brush fire burning through the Republican Party has convinced millions of American idiots that all of Nazism’s sins emerged from Hitler’s embrace of Marxism.
Please! For the sake of our country, stop listening to Glenn Beck, Mark Levin and Dennis Prager.
Here, let me help you.
Norman Thomas was a Socialist who ran for president in 1932.
In April of 1936 he wrote Labor Under the Nazis for Foreign Affairs. Thomas warned that Hitler, only in power for three years, was the international labor movement’s arch enemy.
He wrote, “Hitler, unlike Mussolini, was never a Socialist and never pretended to care for the socialist … part of the Party name.” He continues …
In "Mein Kampf," for instance, there is a rather turgid discussion of trade unions in which he reveals that he distrusts them though he may accept them as a temporary necessity.
Thomas then wrote that before Hitler, back in 1929, Germany, when compared to “all great countries,” came “the nearest to being a paradise for organized labor.”
He said Germany’s three largest labor unions could claim nearly six and a half million members.
Keep in mind that in 1936, as Thomas describes Germany’s pre Hitlerian Arcadia for workers, Roosevelt is still struggling to provide for American workers what Germany already provided for decades, like Social Security for Germans as far back as 1889, which makes me wonder if Roosevelt nicknamed The National Labor Relations Act “The Wagner Act” as an homage to Teutonic Viking excellence.
Thomas writes that before Hitler …
The right to organize and to bargain collectively was written into law and some twelve million employees were under collective agreements. These agreements were enforced under the supervision of Labor Courts established at labor's behest by the law of 1926. These courts had proved friendly to labor. Seventeen million men were protected under an elaborate unemployment insurance system which in 1927 had been added to older systems of accident, health and invalidity insurance. Workers were further protected by old age insurance and in many trades had won protection against, or compensation for, arbitrary discharge.
“Successive governments,” he says, “had respected its (labor’s) legal rights.”
Class resentment is a Fascist’s best friend
Germany’s trade unions, he says, had created a middle class, and that created, “envy” from the “lower middle class” who had no union protections.
“My neighbor has a boat in his driveway because he belongs to a union. I don’t belong to a union, and I can’t afford a boat in my driveway. If I can’t afford a boat in my driveway then nobody should be able to afford a boat in their driveway. Destroy my neighbor’s union.”
Thomas says that early on, Hitler crushed trade unions by exploiting class resentment.
The middle class, and upper middle class all belonged to unions, because unions create the middle and upper middle class. But the lower middle class did not belong to unions, and so Hitler demonized trade unions in order to appeal to a growing Depression ravaged lower middle class.
Like today’s Republicans, he convinced Germany’s poor it was the unions, not the wealthy, who was keeping them down.
Thomas writes just three years into Hitler’s reign that Germany’s labor movement was destroyed completely:
Today the old voluntary labor unions are completely outlawed. Their elected leaders are dead, in exile, in concentration camps or prisons. The old constitutional guarantees of civil liberty and the old legal rights of workers to collective bargaining and to their own Works Councils have been swept away. Labor union property to an estimated value of sixty million dollars has been confiscated by the Nazi state.
And with the destruction of unions in Germany came the destruction of its middle class. By 1936, Thomas writes, “Weekly wages in most trades have gone down and prices up.”
When You Grow Unions, You Grow Democracy and Destroy MAGA
Unions provide dignity. Unions fix the workplace and make it pleasant. By guaranteeing a livable wage, pensions and health benefits work suddenly has meaning. So life has meaning.
There is joy in solidarity.
Nationalism, is not solidarity. It’s Fascistic, because it’s divisive. Not all of us fit the definition of what constitutes a “real American.”
Solidarity in the workplace centers you.
It fosters not just respect but a NEED for others.
It instills the virtue of compromise which is the cornerstone of democracy.
It instills the virtue of community, without which democracy suffocates.
Your are not your job
Unlike every other country in the West, most Americans define themselves by what “they do for a living.”
But most Americans hate what they do for a living. It’s why Americans are quitting.
We hate our bosses and whatever needless task they make us perform to get underpaid for.
The one thing about work we don’t detest is our co-workers.
Ask anyone who works for a living and they will tell you what makes a job tolerable is the people they work with.
A job shouldn’t define you.
That’s why workers need eight hours each day for leisure, plus weekends, to discover who they really are.
Unions are about leisure as much as work.
Leisure is not a luxury, it is a human right.
Professor Harvey J. Kaye in his book “The Fight For The Four Freedoms” says that Roosevelt in his 1944 State of The Union outlined his vision for an economic bill of rights in which all Americans would have, “The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation.”
But workers with leisure time are the enemies of fascism
Workers with leisure time read and attend meetings. They get involved in government. They organize. They vote.
As the number of union jobs declined in the 70s, Americans became overworked. People under the age of 50 have no idea what it means “working nine to five.” Now it’s nine to nine, if you’re lucky, and on weekends.
With the decline of union jobs came the decline of civic participation. Nonunion jobs are backbreaking and render us too exhausted to think about anything other than paying our bills.
And so we’ve gone from “There’s power in a union” to “I’ve got my own problems.”
And that’s exactly what the people reading the Powell Memo wanted.
My problems are your problems
If COVID taught us anything it is that one sick person can make us all sick.
It taught us that loneliness is a disease.
We die without other people.
Like COVID, hyper-individualism is a plague. It’s why we don’t have Medicare for All. We need to take care of everyone, not just ourselves.
Otherwise we die.
That’s not Communism, it’s not Socialism.
It’s the POWER OF THE UNION.
Happy Labor Day.