Always on Strike: Frank Little and the Western Wobblies by Arnold Stead

By Arnold Stead

“[The governor] requested me what we might do if the firms didn't yield to our calls for. I advised him we'd name everyman out of the mines. Then he stated that if we did, that he may position them less than Federal regulate. I laughed and informed him we might name out each employee within the state, agriculture employees, lumbermen, munitions staff, miners, mechanics and all sessions of operating males. He stated ‘Why, guy, you wouldn’t do this. This kingdom is at war.’ I stated ‘ Governor, I don’t care what kingdom your state is struggling with. i'm struggling with for the unity of labor!”
—From the speech for which Frank Little was once murdered in Butte, Montana

Frank Little is taken into account by way of a few to be the best organizer produced by way of the U.S. exertions circulation, and but worthwhile little has been written concerning the well-known commercial staff of the realm (IWW) agitator. Little was once a key chief of the country’s first unfastened speech fights, geared up a few mass moves, and was once thought of this type of probability to company pursuits that he used to be lynched by means of corporation thugs for decry makes an attempt at strike breaking. Police and govt officers not just grew to become a blind eye to his homicide, they later used his phrases and activities to justify a crusade to scapegoat and persecute different contributors of the IWW.

Always on Strike chronicles and significantly engages with Little’s exploits in hopes of revealing a brand new new release of radicals to his lifestyles, legacy and politics.

Featuring hide artwork from a portrait of Frank Little through Keith Seidel, keithseidel.com

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Additional resources for Always on Strike: Frank Little and the Western Wobblies

Sample text

A worker camp of men, women, and children, who among them spoke twenty-seven different languages, had no toilets in the field and no garbage disposal. Temperatures routinely topped one hundred degrees, but workers were forced to walk a mile for a drink of water. Carlton H. 80 or as low as 70 cents. Parker took his figures at random from the ranch’s account books. Durst admitted prohibiting groceries from Wheatland stores being brought in to the camp. He owned half of the general food stores available to workers.

While we can only speculate as to why he chose that particular document, it may well have fulfilled a three-fold purpose. One, along with the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence is the most American of documents as it announces the humanist underpinnings of a new and, at least potentially, egalitarian nation. ” Two, the Declaration is a glaring example of a garden-variety hypocrisy Frank Little was sure to have detested. Its statement “all men are equal with certain inalienable rights” did not apply, within the workings of the American system, to Native Americans or black people (regardless of their gender) or white females or white males who were not property owners.

Benjamin is of course describing police violence as an instrument of social control. Perhaps we discover the key to the IWW’s use of what is routinely described as violence by considering the relationship of violence to action. ” If violence and power are manifestations of action, and modern Progress impedes action, what else might we say about modern Progress? Is it dependent on the administration of justice as defined above by Georges Sorel? In The Illusions of Progress Sorel describes progress as “the adornment of the mind that, free of prejudice, sure of itself, and trusting in the future, has created a philosophy assuring the happiness of all those who possess the means of living well” [my emphasis].

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