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Volume 2 Number 2 (14)


Workers’ Autonomy For Social Revolution

Thatcher’s Britain leads the way into deepening depression.

What’s Capitalism Done

for You lately?

by: Tom Marick Nothing strikes at the heart of modera iodugnal sooty. Bk. un-

wage-labour and capital is a politi- cally hostile one precisely because unemployment is the basis of indus- trial life. However little is under-

stood about the causes of job inse-

WO eRe


domination of workers.

curity. And mainstream ideologists have not addressed themselves to the social consequences of this con- temporary plague.

It is not in the interests of the establishment to treat unemploy- ment as other than a natural condi- tion of life in society. Yet unem- ployment is a transitory phase firmly rooted in the habits of domi- nation by humanity of humanity. This condition constitutes the chief characteristic of the global network today.

As the labour-capacity at socie- ty’s disposal has been gathered to- gether in the cities of the world its productivity has increased to the extent it has been combined more thoroughly. Unemployment accom- panied this increased productivity and bred the familiar poverty of the immediate producers.

Society previously created or found surpluses. However, these only became valuable to the extent they could be extracted from the immediate producers of them. This requirement of domination was facilitated by the centralized regula- tion of the labourers made possible by cities. What is important, how- ever, in this rise of the towns is the consolidation of a leisure class sup- ported by domination.


Spurred by its appetites for prof- its this establishment tended to expand its dominion both against rival authorities and more primitive communities. But the spread of cit- ies also decreased the need for direct As they were brought into closer coopera- tion by way of urbanization the cap-

‘italist class emerged. It lived by way

of trading commodities for which they received a percentage of the value from the producers. These

- merchants really came into their

own as a market for wage labour developed atomizing labourers and

fhe labour magket was both a practical cent oi trade cus- toms and a break with those rou- tines in the sense that previously

onty those items haphazardly pro-

duced in surplus by artisans or land owners’ dependents could become commodities. Now with labour-time for hire any item can become a commodity and any merchant can become an industrialist.

For industrialists the labour market cheapened the value of indi- vidual commodities because the labour needed to produce them could be specialized in the work- shop and fired when not required. The new mobility of workers also reduced employer production costs.

However these reductions in the

net value added to the products also adversely effected the establishment. Currently, for example, it depre- ciates stocks which are claims to future production’s value and there- fore rise and fall with the amount of labour required to produce a com- modity. Likewise increased produc- tivity restricts the credit market which also represents claims to the value of future production. The


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value of credit charges therefore de- clines with production costs. Sim-

Marly currency ca eeecieed piji-


3d, c OI f X a rates signaling that the sates of money is declining. :

All these downward pressures on value add up to a tendency for the

rate of profit to fall. This fall can be

partially countered by increasing an individual firm’s share of the mar- ket. This competition for increased markets is most favourable to those firms with lower production costs. At present production costs are best lowered by mechanization and auto- mation which are the major means of increasing productivity.

Common interest

Yet of late the captains of indus- try have choosen instead to shift the burden of their crisis onto the

labour movement by wage cuts in.

order to increase the profits availa- ble to them. That’s why strike activ- ity to defend wage levels has increased over the last decade.

The capitalists resist automation because they see in it the end of their class. They identify this with the end of society in general. But if workers are to rid themselves of the age old scourge of unemployment

See Unemployment p. 3

Canada now “officially” has over 1,000,000 unemployed.

February 15, 1982 _ 35 cents

Second Class Mail Regis- tration No. 5386


Silence in Complicity

by: John Bacher

While “mainstream” media manipu- lators and political pawrts have been taking remarkably supportive ac- tions against the Polish Govern- ment’s use of martial law to attempt

to crush the-Solidarity Trade Union

Movement, either praise or silence has greeted the Turkish armed for- ces’ similar steps against their coun- trys own dissident union, DISK, The Confederation of Revolutionary Trade Unions. Some 52 of its mem- bers are currently on trial for their lives before a military tribunal.

Like Solidarity, DISK emerged out of opposition to an “official” state-employer controlled trade un- ion organization. Unlike its Polish counterpart, headed by communist party bureaucrats, the Confedera- tion of Turkish Trade Unions, is tied to the AFL-CIO and the CIA. It presently is led by one Sadik Side, a member of the army backed cabinet and enjoys full legal rights except engaging in such forbidden activities as strikes or collective bargaining.

DISK has earlier antecedants than Solidarity, having been formed

in 1967. It quickly became as Berch Berberoglu noted in the March 1981 issue of the scholarly journal Race. and Class, “a rallying-point for class- conscious workers and trade union- ists throughout Turkey.” As a result of its militant strike action military government was similarly imposed in 1971. This led to a rapid increase in the rate of exploitation, with pro- fits extracted from the backs of workers jumping 18 per cent from 1970 to 1973. With the ending of martial law DISK led a resurgence of working class protests. In May 1977 40,000 metal workers began a strike. that would be victorious eight months later. Links were established with the Kurdish nationalist move- ment despite government efforts to turn its opponents against each other. In response to such chal- lenges the fascist CIA-trained death squads of The Nationalist Action Party killed 2,500 persons. In re- sponse, in March 1978, more than two million people took part in a two hour general strike called by DISK to protest fascist terror, which was followed by a march of more than half a million persons in Istan- bul on May Day.

_ Direct Action

Despite anti-union violence work- er militancy intensified in 1979, cli- maxing with the military seizure of

power on September 12th, 1980. In October 1979 400 workers occupied The Kula Textile Factory in Izmir for eight hours until police broke down the doors, dispersing them with water hoses. |

In mid-January 1980 workers in Izmir occupied a state-owned thread factory protesting the cancellation of their contracts. The occupation continued for a month, receiving support from*35,000 workers trom another union. Workers cut electri- city and water supplies, blocked roads, stopped ‘transport in several districts. The occupation ended after some 1,500 workers were arrested after thousands of troops stormed the plant in tanks and armoured cars. In sympathy with victims of military repression some 2,000 teach- ers boycotted classes; resulting in their suspension, the banning of their union and the closing of five schools.

Again akin to the Polish generals directing the recent spate of repres- sion in Poland. the officers who in-

stituted a military -dictatorship in >-

~ - =

Turkey are prime beneficiaries of the economic status-quo. As the Septem- ber 19, 1980 issue of the liberal Brit- ish publication the New Statesman pointed out, the Armed Forces Mu- tual Funds, (financed -by a ten per cent levy from the 80.090 member officer corps) | is the third largest con- glomerate in the courcry. It is un- dertaking joint ventures with foreign firms like Goodyear and Internation- al Harvester to return fat dividends to its “shareholders”.

Like their Polish counter-parts Turkish generals have shared the re- sponsibility for their country’s plunge into massive indebtedness to western bankers. In Turkey it reached a level of $17.5 billion in

1980, partly to fund imports of mil- _

itary equipment and the insatiable appetite of state-run defence indus- tries.

However the extent of repression in Turkey might make even a Polish general wince. For while the arrest estimates are in the 40-70,000 range for both countries, Turkey has con- ducted ten executions under martial law. Also, Amnesty International has reported that 22 persons have died in custody since the takeover.

Despite government claims repeated nt

in a December 31, 1981. Toronto Globe & Mail artigle that torture

See NATO p. 8

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nasty letter in your last issue in which w




Pd like to briefly note that Lazarus Jones’ article on Solidarity’s convention was interesting and hit upon some very good points. However one must delineate between “honest” intellectual sup- porters of Solidarity and the specialists and/or technical experts who were brought in by the then developing bureaucracy. The question is not one of intellectualism vs. anti-intellectualism but, rather, the organic synthesis of revolutionary practice and theo- retical development. Let’s not forget that many of the opponents for the National Chair of Solidarity were also supported by the intellectual community.

As much as the polish workers have inspired many of us we must be critical as well, particularly in attempting to relate the Polish experience to our own workplace/social struggles. And our criticisms should not only be directed at Solidarity’s bureau- cracy.

I believe tht it’s important to recognized the near impossibility to create what would amount to an “island” of self-management in the Leninist sea, that is Eastern Europe. A revolutionary society can not be implemented from above, nor can it exist by itself. Naturally the key is a generalized social revolution not only in Eastern Europe but in the West as well. To ignore the totality of the situation is to be somewhat naive and shortsighted. A quick look at history will show that an isolated workers revolution will be crushed not only by emerging authoritarian forces, but also under the weight of western capital, ie: the International Mone- tary Fund.

Mike Harris

Misdirected Anger

Dear Strikers:

> suggested things would be better off without your publication. Although there are substantial areas of disagreement on every imaginable sub- ject between your paper and ours we do share the final goal of a stateless society and in calmer moments do not wish for your demise.

Our letter was written hastily after seeing your issue which contained the attack on Carl Harp just as we had received the news of his death at the hands of the state. Our anger and sadness unfortunately focused on you.

Good luck with your new monthly format.


Very Impressed

Dear Comrades,

I picked up a copy of STRIKE! Vol. | No. 12 at the Brixton Anarchist Centre in London and was very impressed.

Whilst not fully agreeing with a// your conclusions I thought your article on Poland was very good and much above the usual ‘libertarian’ and ‘leftist’ superficial adulation of the Sol- idarity union. Also the article on the 1. W.W. was unusual in not + maintaining the expected anarchist reserve in criticising the cur- rent I. W.W. in respect for the memory of the old I. W.W.

The coverage of workplace struggles was much better than most magazines with your political outlook, and for those of us outside North America the news content was very useful. What

more can I say?! Fraternally,


Manchester, England


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Here we are with the second issue of the monthly STRIKE! The reaction to the new format so far has been quite favoura- ble. So has the response to making STRIKE! more of a ‘move- ment’ paper. As pleased as we are over this it is still our inten- tion to have STRIKE! function as a publication committed to the eventual realization of a structured, class-based libertarian organization.

Nonetheless, encouragement from libertarians of all persua- sions gives us added reason to continue publishing STRIKE! But praise does not pay our ever increasing bills: Foremost among thse rising expenses are those recently imposed by the Post Office..In our estimation the new postal rates add nearly $100.00 to the cost of each issue. Adding salt to the wounds is the Post Office’s frustration of our attempts to get a Second Class Mailing Permit.

Since individual mailings require double the previous postage necessary we find ourselves forced to re-assess our subscription rates. Any changes will be considerably more modest than those of the Post Office. But they will be in addition to our less flexible subscription renewal policy. Henceforth persons whose subscriptions have expired will get two additional issues before being cut off. Ample advance notice will also be- given. It is in the interest of the newspaper’s survival that this inconvenience be avoided so please renew those subscriptions promptly.

Both subscribers and persons receiving bulk mailings of STRIKE! received with the last issue our first direct fundraising appeal. We hope it will impress upon people how precarious the future of STRIKE! is. Making the newspaper self-sustaining is not a pipe dream. If only 50 people were to contribute just $15.00 per month STRIKE! could continue for years!

Our black on red STRIKE! buttons are en route to us through our highly reputed postal service and should be avail- able any time now. They’re $1.00 each. The money goes to the newspaper’s survival. Bulk orders will be sent on consignment but we prefer pre-payment if possible.



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Starting next issue the addresses for the STRIKE! network

will be listed. Local distributors are welcome to take part and

shall be involved in major decisions affecting STRIKE! A

number of groups and one individual have expressed their

desire to be listed. We urge all other interested persons to con-

tact us as soon as possible. Finally, STRIKE! received a provocative reply to the article

‘A Challenge to the Prison Movement’ which appeared in Vol. 1

No. 11. . :

We were asked to re-print excerpts but did not given its sca-

thing accusations against the anonymous author of the contro-

versial article. Neithėr was it our wish to devote any space to a

critique also supporting avowedly Marxist-Leninist urban guer-

illas. However if some of our readers wish to see this document

we invite them to write: `

Paul Hetznecker

161 Colonial Village


Mass. 01002

p ted

= gai

ISSN 0712-1539



February 15, 1982

A Feminist Perspective

Letter to the Editors of Strike (Re: ““Reds/Hollywood goes to the revolution”)

Your reviewer Lazarus Jones seems to have overlooked the fact that the movie “Reds” is called Reds, plural, not Red, singular. The embarrassing portrayal of Louise Bryant by Diane Keaton (as someone said at intermission, “John Reed and Annie Hall go to Moscow”) no doubt contributes to the dismissal of Bryant as a serious character in the film, but surely we must acknowledge that Warren Beatty intended Bryant to be more than just a sexual appendage of Reed. As the program Tribute somewhat optimistically announced, “Bryant pursued goals of her own recognition as a writer and freedom as a woman.”

Lazarus’ review betrays one of two common reaction to Louise Bryant a-la-Reds. Inrodinate praise for Beatty’s attempt to break the female silver-screen stereotype, or, as in Lazarus’ case, an almost total disregard for the fact that Bryant was one of two central figures in the movie. It is true that romantic schmaltz tends to dominate the film, undoubtedly for strategic appeal-to-a-popular-audience motives, but why write-off the female character as soon as “Gone With The Wind” tendencies get out of hand? Reed is as much a part of the lilies and Christmas tree scenes as Bryant, yet his participation in the romance is seen in terms of an over-all failure of the film rather than as a trivializing of his character.

Intelligent discussion of Beatty’s treatment of Bryant has been overlooked because a female character cannot yet be shown on screen in a relationship with a man and still be con- sidered a serious component in the film. In Reds Bryant is more than, as Lazarus puts it, Reed’s “domestic misadven- tures”. Despite an all too prevalent reluctance to criticize a film considered “decidedly subversive” in the context of “Rea- ganism’’, clear-headed discussion of the presentation of a char- acter such as Bryant is essential to the ongoing development of feminist cultural criticism. This is particularly so in the light of Hollywood’s recent belated attempts to introduce women rath- er than sex symbols onto the screen. We need to be as certain about where a film succeeds as where it fails, and both success and failure in this context can be seen in Reds. context can be seen in Reds.

Encouraging moments in the movie included the opening exhibition scene where Bryan is‘shown as social liberator de- spite the mortification of her staid husband. The first studio scene where Bryan puts her career before romance and doesn’t end up in bed. Bryan’t decision to leave her husband and go to New York by herself in the days when 3400-odd miles couldn’t - be travelled by plane and women never journeyed alone. The suggestion that Bryant saw throught the bullshit of intellectual cafe life and, later, the super-star politico’ scene. The acknow- ledgement that women scream and punch (I’m praising faith to reality here, not the message) and don’t necessarily end a dis- `

agreement happily in bed. The congressional investigation

‘trayed as emotionally strong when under attack. The Bryant criticism of Reed when he strong-arms his comrade with the Tm a more dedicated revolutionary than you” line. And, finally, the scenes in which Bryan further proves her strength by refusing to allow O’Neill to ‘protect’ her from the ordeal of the secret journey to Russia, a journey which she successfully completes.

Notwithstanding these positive aspects, what stunk in the movie included the not-so-subtle suggestion that despite the film’s criticism of Bryant’s artistic dabbling, there was, after all, something endearing and maybe even meaningful about it. The whole O'Neill affair in which it was shown that women are vain and fickle creatures but that the best of them can over- come this drawback and stick by the ‘good guy’ in the end. The conclusion that free love is a destructive game which serious lovers reject in favour of monogamy and ultimately marriage (or perhaps marriage and ultimately monogamy). The break-up scene in which Bryan proves that women don’t really mean what they say and are at heart jealous and possessive. The revolution scenes in which Bryan’t sexual re-union with Reed informs us that no woman can resist a hero, and most annoy- ing of all, the degrading kitchen scene in which any political pretentions the film may have sink into cheap slap-stick for the sake of a laugh.

The most positive feminist aspect of Reds is the attempt, however unsuccessful, to develop a unique female personality. Ironically enough, the failure of the film lies not in its slips into stereotypes and cliches, but in its inability to take itself ser- iously. The movie leaves Bryant stranded and alone in Moscow and the director feels it unnecessary to give us a postscript. It isn’t that Beatty presumes Bryant has failed to arouse our interest, rather it is that as director he has not fully grasped that a unique female character must be able to stand alone on her own merits. The conclusion of the Reed/Bryant story according to Reds betrays Beatty’s patriarchal assumption that women as individuals are ultimately important only in-terms of their relationsihip with men. Bryant is interesting because she was Reed’s wife. It stands.to reason that a man as great as Reed would be involved with a women as remarkable as Bryant.

R.B., Toronto 5

STRIKE! is published ten times a year, skipping a month in

January and August, by the STRIKE! Publishing Association

and is a member newspaper of the Alternate Press Syndicate. STRIKE! is an independent journal of Anarchist and Liber- tarian Communist news and opinion dedicated to the principles of direct action and self-management. a Back issues of STRIKE! and its predecessor the North Ameri- can Anarchist are available at our regular price per copy.


February 15, 1982

Under the Rule of Capital A Refusal of Knowledge

by: Kim Il Sung Jr.

For-those who want more out of life than a hand-mechanized manure: farm in the middle.of East Bumfuck Territory, the notions of microphilia seem perverse indeed. Microphilia is the advocacy of smallness, justified as

fortune exploiting this theory. Public- tions such as the Fifth Estate find it equally useful. They both agree that the intrinsic formal properties of a device (considered of course a priori) dictate the universal use and conse- quent social result of that device.

CLASSIC QUOTATIONS ‘‘There is no such thing as a labor-saving device.’ The Fifth Estate


a natural consequence of and appro- priate response to the smallness of human beings in comparison with the rest of the world or universe. In the microphilic belief-system the accent is not only on the relative smallness,of human beings but, most importantly, on our presumedly inherent, “‘natu- ral” and insurmountable limitations.

While the Catholic view of human- ity argues from similar premises, microphilic beliefs need not be explic- itly mystical or theistic. Whereas the megaphile would develop his argu- ment around a blind confidence in the panacea of growth for its own sake, the microphile will insist on the incompatibility of growth itself with his or her notion of “the good life.” Whereas the megaphile attempts to rationalize his insistence on growth with the facile equation “‘more growth automatically means freedom,” the microphile defends smallness with an eye to the inexorable perpetuation of necessity, scarcity, and by implica- tion, the limitation of freedom. Meg- aphilia and microphilia are opposite sides of the same coin. Both are quan- tifications of the social experience according to extreme, rigid, simplistic

growth, large-scale vs. small-scale, anti-technology vs pro-technology. The opponents of “technology” (never defined and invariably con- fused with technique”) commit two fundamental theoretical blunders: 1)

reification, the reversal of subject and ~-

object; 2) formal abstraction, the domination of form over content— both of which are essential premises of capitalist ideology.

Ascribing authoritarian conscious-

ness to inanimate objects hardly needs

refutation. Yet constantly one sees this nonsense not only passed off as rational, but presented as inspired wisdom. The argument against “‘tech-

' nology” goes something like this.

Because high-technology instruments are employed in the process of class domination, they are therefore respon-

sible for that domination. The same `

hammer that built houses and wag- ons, smashed kneecaps during the Spanish Inquisition. The hammer is therefore responsible for that nature of social domination. The argument

is just that simplistic. It carries the:

underlying assumption tht ‘‘technol- ogy” gives rise to social relationships. Concurrent with this point of view are the slogans, “Cokeadds life,” and “Chevys make good things happen.” Such is the nature of reification.

As Guy Debord wrote concerning the nature of the spectacle, “It is a vision of the world which has become objectified.”” Those who define all technology in terms of capitalistjtech- nology show themselves incapable of any but spectacular thinking. The spectacle says “ouf way is the only way—what appears is all there is,” and the opponents of “technology” appear to agree whole-heartedly. It shows how thoroughly they have imbibed the ahistoricism of the spec- tacle.

The separation of form and con- tent is an inherently rationalist-empir- icist notion. It is the same premise which extracts exchange-value from use-value. Form is said to dictate content—and under capitalism, so it does. Marshall McLuhan made his

Capitalist employment as a machine is posited as universal, hence the social context becomes irrelevant. The machine is treated as a category separate from its social development— as if there were an autonomous “‘his- tory of technology” aboye and beyond

““Now remember, if you pick up a rock, that’s technology.

red ends of craftsmanship.” For those like Lewis Mumford who des-

cribe a large-scale technics as “au-

thoritaian’’, and a small scale as “democratic”, the following ques- tions are offered. Was Egyptian hy- draulic society democrati or au-

thoritarian? Is hand-cutting stone a simple technology? Does electricity

transmit conformist ideas? Which is more democratic, China under the Ming Dynasty, or France in 1848? Is certain knowledge inherently dan- gerous?

The next step is computer surveillance.”

the history of social development—a God-given characteristic. McLuhan- ism (formalism) is a perennial pop- philosophy designed specifically to obscure the social origins of whatever comes into question.

In the “back to the primitivism” approach one can see the linear result of the hippy movement of the late 60s. Not only are the arguments ahistorical and self-serving, but they bear a dis- heartening resemblance to the kind of JohnSinclair-“‘fuck everything—rock ’n’ roll revolution” most of us had hoped was long forgotten. It is the, kind of Abbott and Costello “‘theo- retical work” appealing to uncritical minds looking for simplistic solu- tions. It is this position of anti- knowledge which has led several wri- ters to categorize ‘“‘anarchism” (too often rightly so) as the last phase of bourgeois individualism.

Tia LLliet tet aa wh EAE TI) dp k VARO ONASA REE ic

At atime when the forces of capital

are re-grouping resources, and ruling ,

class policies require austerity in all things on the part of the working class, the philosophies of ‘small is beautiful” and “back to primitivism” fit neatly into the prevailing spectacle.

Such notions are hardly new. In des- '

_ cribing his Nazi Utopia, Adolph Hitler envisioned “communities of indivi- dual craftsmen working together for the glory of German folkspirit.”” He

railed against large-scale industry

which he claimed ‘“‘subverted the sac-



by St. Stateless

On New Years Eve I happened to be partying in Montreal - a party of anarchists. It was there that I learned from another Greek comrade that P. Kiritsis, Y. Skanthalis, K. Moiras had been released sometime around Christmas. All three comrades had engaged in a long hunger strike before their release. .

However we have no news about the fate of five other imprisoned comrades: Kalapothopoulos, Spiro- poulos, Karabatakis, Tapoutis. It should be hoped that pressure will be put on the Greek Socialist Gov- ernment for their release. The- re-

= lease of the three comrades was a

result of struggles within the prison and coordinated actions outside the prison by numerous sympathizers.

On a last note: It appears that after the three comrades were freed prison inmates became increasingly militant demanding social justice for themselves and demanding to know where is the socialism in Greece. The last we heard it was stationed outside Korydalos Prison in 300 armored anti-riot cars.

Unemployment continued from p. 1

they will encourage automation by way of defending their real wages. While it is true that accompany- ing unemployment has throughout history divided workers as they

compete for jobs the maintenance of

their wages has been the common interest which united them. It is this


is no fairy tale.

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Strikes E

by: Bruce Allen Romania continues to be a focal point of discontent in Eastern Europe. Violent strikes combined with other forms of unrest reached another high point this past

. autumn. Trouble was principally touched .

off by the introduction of bread ra- tioning. Once.again the militant coal miners of the Jiul Valley region went into action. Strikes erupted

there in October leading to yet a-

nother direct confrontation between these workers and Romanian Presi- dent Nicolai Ceasescu.

As they had done in 1977 (see 1 #11, p. 13) the

the scene of a strike action by incar- cerating a local party official. The time before Ceasescu had to engage an assembly of miners in a five hour ong, Edward Gierek-style polemic during which they continually

taunted him. This time Ceasescu’s |

presence was greeted by a barrage of stones forcing him to flee by helicopter.

Elsewhere, rioting reportedly oc- cured in the southern city of Giur- giu. Supposedly, the local deputy major was killed in the unrest.

Romanian workers are clearly more fed up with their situation than ever. But they still seem incapable of anything more than a growing num- ber of spontaneous outbursts of

by Mike Harris & Brian Amesly .

Libertarian Aid for Latin Amer- ica (L.A.L.A.) is a project which began this‘ past July during an anarcho-syndicalist conference in New York City. The aims and pur- poses of L.A-L.A. are to provide both material aid and support for our underground and imprisoned comrades in Latin America. L.A.L.A. intends to do this by fund raising and. publishing an informa- tional bulletin concerning all activi- ties and events affecting them. This will complement similar work al-

. ready underway in Europe.

In order to do this type of solidar- ity work the development: of a broad network is needed. L.A.L.A. wishes to encourage all organizati-

same interest which has made pos- *

sible protection for the unemployed to prevent their being used for reac- tionary ends. included early retirement projects, overtime restrictions, longer vaca- tions, unemployment insurance plans and shorter work days.

But it is wrong to believe that this is the remedy of the workers’ movement for unemployment.



This protection has.


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rage. What the workers lack is even a semblance of organization mainly because earlier attempts to form auto- nomous unions were smashed. Given the intense repression prevailing in Romania this obstacle will be very difficult to overcome.

At the same time there is the wor- sening economic crisis. Next to Poland, Romania owes the most money of all the East European re- gimes, six billion dollars, to Western banks. As in Poland too there is a quicksand effect in which govern- ment officials struggle to meet pay- ments when they come due and often press for delays.

SiCal Chairs sei response. But this tactic of serving up individual bureaucrats as scape- goats for popular frustration is wear- ing thin. So must be- the regime's reliance upon nationalism and his personality cult.

In view of all this, Romania’s bur- eaucratic ruling class as a whole must be relieved by the temporary supression of the Polish workers’ movement. They know that had the iron fist of martial law not come down there Romania was a suscept- ible candidate for the contagion of intense class warfare. Even so there can be no doubt that more trouble lies ahead for the regime of Nicolai


LALA Mobilizes

ons/persons who read STRIKE! to help out. What is needed are con- tacts and sources of information in both various Latin American coun- tries and the exile communities elsewhere. The nature of the work involved and the circumstances under which libertarians must operate in Latin America make maintaining security an important consideration.

The principle upon which L.A.L.A. is founded is international libertarian and proletarian solidar- ity. STRIKE! encourages all inter- ested persons to contact: Libertarian Aid for Latin America, c/o Libertarian Workers’ Groups, P.O. Box 692, Old Chelsea Station, New York, N.Y. 10113, U.S.A.

Rather our hard won understanding is that no solution to unemployment

exists Outside the concentration of

Capital, automation of production, the elimination of surplus value and the establishment it supports which will not pursue production on the basis of its profitability.


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The fascination of the film noir has been rediscovered. With films like Prince of the City, Body Heat and the remade Postman Always Rings Twice now in the theatres,

there must be something about these -

dark tales which captures the cur-

rent mood. The films noirs of the forties were


one and gloor V al ere Pe, tne

convoluted plots, and also because the characters were forced to make moral choices in a morally ambigu- ous world. Particularly in the best remembered detective films of that

time (The Maltese Falcon and The .

Big Sleep, for example) truth and virtue are not clear until the final frames of the film. Even then, the accepted truth the story told to the newspapers and the cops is constructed from pieces of the real truth, with enough fiction to patch the holes in between (holes used by the central character to slip out with- out indictment). It is morality with- out formal morals or scruples, the search for a just solution by a detec- tive who has himself been implicated in the crime and guilt. At best, those who escape are those with the least guilt, and those who, it is arranged, will ‘take the fall’, are despicable, even if not actually responsible for the crime they are pinned with. The

‘central character plunges into this

morass with a variety of ‘motives: personal gain, opportunism, sexual passion, but also a sense of justice.

These films were made during black times, with economic depres- sion and war as the backdrop of daily life. The ‘moral’ person was forced to enter this dark labyrinth of murder and betrayal in the hopes of reaching some brighter-justice at the other end. There was no way to stand back or rise above it. Those who loved international comradery ‘were forced into the cross fire be- tween nations, those who loved shar- ing and generosity were forced to look out for their own immediate interests.

The virtue of the film noir was (and is) the assertion that even in dark times like those one could still make choices. One could seek the most justice, the least compromise.

Just as the decay of the workers’ movement from World War I to the mid-thirties set the stage for the in-

dividual approach manifest in the |

ee ee ee en ee ae = 7

film noir, so the collapse of our generation’s moral and political cer- tainty after the sixties and early sev- enties laid the grounds for a return to the film noir. Economic insecur- ity, the threat of war, and the failure of collective solutions, are once a- gain the setting for daily life. While some of these new films noirs are ere |) api ulation ere back- tunism, reed and AE some, like Prince of the City present the torturous search for clarity in a troubled world.

Prince of the City may be at the

fringe of the film noir in plot, but-

thematically it cuts to the center of the genre. Danny Ciello, the central character of the film, is a cop in New York City’s Special Investigat- ing Unit (SIU), narcotics section. Ciello and his partners are involved