Welcome login | signup
Language en es fr

Forum Post: "May Day Started Here !!!" (In The USA) : by Noam Chomsky

Posted 5 years ago on April 30, 2012, 9:25 p.m. EST by shadz66 (19985)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

May Day Started Here !!!

by Noam Chomsky.

People seem to know about May Day everywhere except where it began, here in the United States of America. That’s because those in power have done everything they can to erase its real meaning. For example, Ronald Reagan designated what he called, “Law Day”—a day of jingoist fanaticism, like an extra twist of the knife in the labor movement. Today, there is a renewed awareness, energized by the Occupy movement’s organizing, around May Day, and its relevance for reform and perhaps eventual revolution.

If you’re a serious revolutionary, then you are not looking for an autocratic revolution, but a popular one which will move towards freedom and democracy. That can take place only if a mass of the population is implementing it, carrying it out, and solving problems. They’re not going to undertake that commitment, understandably, unless they have discovered for themselves that there are limits to reform.

A sensible revolutionary will try to push reform to the limits, for two good reasons. First, because the reforms can be valuable in themselves. People should have an eight-hour day rather than a twelve-hour day. And in general, we should want to act in accord with decent ethical values.

Secondly, on strategic grounds, you have to show that there are limits to reform. Perhaps sometimes the system will accommodate to needed reforms. If so, well and good. But if it won’t, then new questions arise. Perhaps that is a moment when resistance is a necessary step to overcome the barriers to justified changes. Perhaps the time has come to resort to coercive measures in defense of rights and justice, a form of self-defense. Unless the general population recognizes such measures to be a form of self-defense, they’re not going to take part in them, at least they shouldn’t.

If you get to a point where the existing institutions will not bend to the popular will, you have to eliminate the institutions.

May Day started here, but then became an international day in support of American workers who were being subjected to brutal violence and judicial punishment.

Today, the struggle continues to celebrate May Day not as a “law day” as defined by political leaders, but as a day whose meaning is decided by the people, a day rooted in organizing and working for a better future for the whole of society.


per aspera ad astra ...


[Article copied under "Fair Use" from : http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article31200.htm ]



Read the Rules
[-] 4 points by beautifulworld (22858) 5 years ago

"If you’re a serious revolutionary, then you are not looking for an autocratic revolution, but a popular one which will move towards freedom and democracy. That can take place only if a mass of the population is implementing it, carrying it out, and solving problems."

Solidarity on May Day 2012!

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 5 years ago

Thanx. I think that you quote THE critical sentences from Chomsky's interesting historical piece + a tune in Solidarity for May Day : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mSSaDmYLyI !!!

pax et lux ...

[-] 3 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Yes, the American People have been denied the knowledge of their own history by a giant megemedia conglomerate that owns not only the visual and newsprint media, but the book publishers and text book publishers who place their books in our now failing school system.

It is now up to the individual to reclaim that history for themselves. I highly recommend "A People's History Of The United States," by Howard Zinn, for all those who want to know their own history; the history that has been deleted from the public record.

Long Live Mayday!

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 5 years ago

Long Live The 99% !!! Resistance Is Fertile !!

pax, amor et lux ...


[-] 0 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

I was surprised, no shocked to experience May Day in Europe. In some sense it was like WW-ii revisited. Swastica's and Hammer and Sickle's spray painted on walls and fences. Police warning us to change our walking routes. Stay out of areas. Demonstrations, fights. emergency vehicles running almost all night.

I just wasn't thinking about "Workers of the World Unite" slogans and movements. But there they were.

This was a year before Occupy, so

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

So Ronald Reagan 'subverted' May Day, and designated it Law Day. I don't like that. If there is any 'subversion' to be going on, we should be the ones doing it. :-)

Seriously, it is amazing how we have lost this day... May Day... to the world. This should never happen again. Later today, we will be out in the streets of NYC to help take this day back for the people, and in honor of those who sacrificed the ultimate. We are very ready to share this day with the world though. SOLIDARITY

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 5 years ago

He renamed it LAW DAY because he knew ignoring the law should be avoided one day a year:

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

Lol.....is that why he did it? You need that when there are so many consensual crimes on the books. :-)

[-] 0 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Reagan was a liberal, just like the founding fathers, what are you talking about?

[-] 3 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

Well...we were talking about May Day. Other than instituting neoliberalism, the case could be made that he was more liberal than Obama.

[-] -1 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Of course he was more liberal. He raised taxes. He didn't start any wars. He expanded domestic spending. Obama has done the opposite. Yet the Republitards keep railing on Obama and hold up Reagan like some sort of idol.

[-] 1 points by Deadbeat (11) from Austin, TX 5 years ago

You are wrong about Reagan. Reagan MASSIVELY cut taxes on the rich and altered the tax system from a progressive system to a regressive system. He also raised the regressive payroll tax in order to reclaim some of the revenue lost to cutting the progressive income tax.

Reagan also inflated military spending while cutting social spending. The policy tax cuts for the wealth and large military expenditure created huge deficits that benefited the banks and Wall Street speculators.

In addition Reagan signed the first free trade agreement -- with Israel. This funnel more money in trade that is often not mention and it is how Israel get much more than of sited $3 billion in aid.

Reagan also instigated the Iran-Iraq proxy war. Reagan also funded proxy wars in Central America where Israel supplied arms bypassing the U.S. Congress. And also bombed Libya.

Reagan also refused to enforce anti-trust laws which allowed many firms to merge and purge. The movie "Wall Street" provides an excellent example of the corporate raiding that occurred in the 1980's.

Neo-cons who have instigated the wars of the past decade got the entry into the halls of power during the Reagan years.

[-] 1 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Okay... I wasn't alive during the Reagan years, but I hear people on our side saying Reagan was actually a liberal. Sounds like you have your facts straight though, I had to chuckle when you mentioned bombing Libya.

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

That shows you how screwed up things are.

[-] 0 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Bingo. Obama is easily just as big of a Republican't as Bush.

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

I think Obama is screwed up, but not as much as Bush, no.

[-] 2 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

What would he have to do to be as bad as Bush? Prolong the foreign wars, start bombing Libya, cut military spending by only one percent, keep taxes on the rich low, and accelerate the domestic spying program?

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

He would have had to have started the pre-emptive war in Iraq.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

You got it, and lied us into it as well. If Obama had done 1/10th of the evil Bush did he'd be facing a firing squad.

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

I forgot about his lying to get the war started. Bush should be jailed for all the human misery he has caused.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Worst president ever! Hands down! I say trash the Republicans! We need to get 90% turnout in the next election. Anybody who lets even one Republican retain a seat by not voting will do so to their eternal shame, as far as I'm concerned. Then we'll give all the turn coat Democrats a thrashing!

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 5 years ago

Music to my ears :)

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

There is no doubt in my mind either that he was the worst President in my time.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Thanks, and I'm upvoting your comments:) Your score doesn't reflect your contribution here.

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

Thanks. I feel very fortunate that i can do other things in this movement too because not that long ago, I could not do them due to health reasons. So having gotten a second lease on life, I am making the most of it. I feel that one of the rolls I can play is to link people here with what is going on in NYC, and vice versa.. Please know though that I do so humbly, as my part in this struggle that we are in is very small compared to many people that i know here, and in the city in particular. Of course all things shared will have to be taken with a grain of salt, as everyone has their own slant or little bias. So taking that into consideration, I report that this revolution seems to be in very good hands from what I can see. ...lol, but true. :-)

[-] 1 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

1/10th? this is going to be a tough calculation....

Bush gave us eight years of Iraq, eight years of Afghanistan, wiretapping, drone kills, extrajudicial retention and Guantanamo bay....

Obama gave us three extra years of Iraq, six extra years of Afghanistan, expanded the wiretapping program, drone kills and extrajudicial retention, kept Guantanamo bay open, bombs for Libya and of course signed the NDAA allowing the next Republican president the power to assassinate US citizens.

If all of this is less than 1/10th of what Bush did, one of us is tragically bad at math.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 5 years ago

a San Diego citizen has already been drone assassinated in Yemen

Anwar al-Awlaki (also spelled al-Aulaqi; Arabic: أنور العولقي‎ Anwar al-‘Awlaqī; April 21, 1971 – September 30, 2011) was an American[8] and Yemeni imam who was an engineer and educator by training.[9][10] According to U.S. government officials, he was a senior talent recruiter and motivator who was involved with planning operations for the Islamist militant group al-Qaeda.[2][6][11][12][13][14][15] With a blog, a Facebook page, and many YouTube videos, the Saudi news station Al Arabiya described him as the "bin Laden of the Internet",[16][17] though Bin Laden himself reportedly held Awlaki in low esteem.[18] Many of his videos have subsequently been removed from YouTube after a request from US congress.[19]


[-] 0 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

I'm not buying that. Do you think Obama is God? Bush left a mess that Solomon and Methuselah combined couldn't fix in four years.

Having said that, he's a "New Democrat," not nearly progressive enough for me, but next to GWB he might as well Be God.

[-] 0 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Yeah, the conservatives are really screaming for an end to the wars. LOL.

Look, say whatever you want. At the end of the day, I just want an end to the bombing, killing, wiretapping, and jailing. Be a part of it for all I care.

If it takes one executive order to start it, it only takes one to get us out of it. O-Bomb-ya is complacent to it by not ending it.

Face the truth.

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Yawn. You're a thousand headed snake.

[-] 1 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

Your lips are moving, but all I hear is "more bombs for random countries! Baa-aaah!"

I'd rather be a thousand headed snake than a beheaded sheep, thrown away by its establishment master after its useful life is over.

[-] 1 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

So the pre-emptive war against US citizens (the NDAA) doesn't count? Gosh, coulda fooled me.

[-] -1 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

They get canceled out with the Patriot Act, and you will not hear me defending Obama. They are both shitty in my book....it's just Bush is in a class of evill all by himself. That's all.

[-] 2 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

What is in the Patriot act that is more despicable than

  • Extrajudicial retention

  • Indefinite and extrajudicial retention of US citizens captured on US soil

  • Expanding the wiretapping program

  • And of course, not even trying to repeal the Patriot act? It is the same as passing it, if you have the power to push for change and don't.

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

Look...I'm not happy about any of that shit either. I did in fact protest the Patriot Act when few others did, and Obama as well when he was in town fund-raising. Still it is not as horrible as killing hundreds of thousands of people in Iraq. Bush is in a league all by himself.

[-] 2 points by extroll (47) 5 years ago

He only begrudgingly ended the war in Iraq three years after he said he would. Do I need to remind you that he extended the war in Afghanistan six years when he claimed he would end it? What would he have to do to make you realize he is a fascist warlord? Why do you follow him around like a lost sheep?

[-] 0 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Okay, there's nothing ex about extroll. You're just preaching the same "on message" BS that all the trolls are preaching. Go find yourself a nice outhouse to haunt. *&%&$!!!

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 5 years ago

Who said i was following him around like a lost sheep? Just reread my comments here.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 5 years ago


[-] 1 points by 71353933 (85) 5 years ago

I choose to work 12 hours days .....thank you.

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 5 years ago

U R welcome + IF you sleep 6-8 and commute, eat & do all else that needs to be done ... it's a wonder you have time to read and post here too .. but well done you !!!

pax et lux ...

[-] 0 points by behindthemask (-124) 5 years ago

go home . . .or start searching each other . . . .those wearing the masks R not all U think

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8719) 5 years ago

Oh no, we know that most of those who wear black are infiltrators. That has been clear for a long time.

On the CBS news coverage, they gave a fairly long segment about supposed anarchists plotting to blow up a bridge, a decently long piece about black bloc infiltrators comitting vandalism, and about one second to peaceful protest.

Ain't it great what Goldman Sachs can buy with our tax dollars?