Verizon: union win

Jeff Walker jkw1199p at
Fri Aug 25 07:43:16 PDT 2000

The key in using "cheap victories" is to use them as a tool to escalate conflict and to demonstrate that the source of the people's power comes from collective action, not from laws, rules, etc. By starting out with a smaller battle and victory, it encourages people to take larger steps. Applying the concept to union organizing (my frame of reference), if you have, say, a health and safety issue, instead of filing a grievance, get a bunch of the workers together, march into the boss's office, and demand a solution. Then, using this as an example to the other people, pick out a bigger fight and get more people involved.

Frequent action does lead to burn out. The role of any organizer/activist needs to be to lead people into these fights, to determine what we can do and to pace the actions to keep burnout from happening.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Chuck0" <chuck at> To: <lbo-talk at> Sent: Thursday, August 24, 2000 4:19 PM Subject: Re: Verizon: union win

> Barry Rene DeCicco wrote:
> > Another was that immediate action was never to be sneered at,
> > even cheap victories (however, the leadership should be aware
> > that a cheap victory was just that). He recounts leading a group of
> > protestors into an office to demand something that the people in that
> > office were totally willing to provide, and then using that as a
> The flip-side of this is that frequent actions can burn everybody out.
> Sure, cheap victories are good, but there should be a good reason for
> doing them. One of the mistakes that the Left has repeated over the
> years is to mistake constant activity as progress towards a strategic
> goal.
> Chuck0

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