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Vancouver Mayday 2013:
The Mayday Rally and March
The Call to the Working Class that was Ignored Except for the Anarchists and Some Others
It might as well have been an ignored emergency broadcast as the working class apparently fell asleep on their traditional day of organized protest. They were remarkably absent and there was little previous notification. Perhaps this is due to the pummelling unions are getting in Canada from all side that has caused a disheartening. Perhaps it is due to corruption by union heads. But the anarchist postered for the event weeks in advance. In the stead of the working class en masse, the local anarchists marched in a torch light parade in the DTES along with a solitary sympathizer of the Bolshevik Tendency, a few members of the IWW, the RLG and supporters. Missing were the working class en masse, the CP, the Spartacist League, MAWO, the IS, and candidates for the upcoming BC election,
The anarchists, all dressed in black from head to toe, started with a few speakers that addressed local issues of gentrification in the Downtown East Side, The Enbridge XL pipeline, neo-colonialism of the Coast Salish territory, poor wages and working conditions and the history of Mayday. They had several large black signs such as “Class War” and “Anti-capitalism”. The corporate media, though covering Mayday confrontations in Quebec and Turkey, ignored the Vancouver Anarchist event. This was only covered by alternative media. The only march that showed up for Vancouver listed on several alternate news, was the anarchist march despite rumours of a march along Commercial Drive, which did not show in any news event.
There are plenty of reasons to be out on the streets demanding change. There was the collapse and two other factory disasters in Bangladesh that has killed several hundred workers. In the US, there was the lock-down martial law of Boston after the marathon bombing that saw over a million treated as prison inmates by the police and military. Meanwhile, the US government quietly passed laws dealing with internet security and censorship as well as allowing drones to be used in US skies. in Banks in Cyprus raided peoples accounts to deal with the deficit. The NYPD has been involved with a “stop and frisk” program that profiles and centers out blacks and Hispanics. There was a huge explosion in Waco Texas. On Mayday, the police rioted on protestors in Turkey and Quebec. Bankster scandals were and are all over the news. Canada's policy on work visas for cheap “off-shore” imported workers was blown out into public view due to clerks being fired from RBC and replaced by unqualified temporary visa workers. This is an issue that has been in use for several years and only now it comes out. Since Thatcher in Britain and Reagan's voodoo economics in the US, unions have been destroyed in favour of cheap imported goods from China and from Asia. Reagan deregulated the banks that lead to the current world wide economic malaise and depression. The result is a world wide casino economy that profits from perpetual proxy wars and killing austerity world wide. Despite attempts to regulate the banking sector with something like the Glass-Steagal Act, the CEOs of banks “too big to fail” and all their lobbyists have effectively resisted any change. This and the recent wild cat walkout of Alberta prion guards, sharrifs and court workers, is more than enough, but it is far from the whole list that includes policies like the NDAA.
Capitalism has gone berserk in the race to the bottom, leaving homelessness, starvation, war and misery in its wake, while the bosses reap all the benefits in a casino economy that acts like a world scale Ponzi scheme. They appear to be immune from all reasonable request and have in some cases, enshrined their own protection in law, such as the case of Monsanto that has made it law that they cannot be prosecuted or brought to court. To do this can backfire on those who attempt it. Electoral promises are ignored after elections as politicians stay the course. Genuine progress for human need is supplanted for profits. IT is high time to abandon reforms and sops from the capitalists and organize for a genuine economic democracy.