Organized Labor Forces Task Of Making New Political Policy

Cohen, Joseph

By Joseph E. Cohen Organized Labor Faces Task Of Making New Political Policy "Non-Partisan" Policy a Pathetic Failure, Says Writeró A. F. of L. Must Give a Lead to Struggle for Shorter...

...tarn and town Re-echoed with my words...
...Just when the voice of organized labor should have been rajsed with clarion clearness, when the results of the national election meant such abject woe or such possible weal for the whole throng who toil as wage-earners, the American Federation of Labor was strangely silent...
...It is the only gift 1 have to give worthy of the giver at least in some sort of tribute to the life you gave in service to the Cause...
...Labor will have to face the new situation and deal with it in its own right and duty...
...But you remained, a* even now you ttand, Battalion* frozen by an old command, "But you are tlavetl" An ancient tyranny Has thundered to your brains...
...I've arranged for two passes at the Europa Theatre In your name, and if you like the picture, 'Kameradschaft', say a few words in your column...
...When in 1916 Congress psssed the Adamson eight-hour law for the workers on the railroads it set the precedent for cutting of hours in all interstate commerce...
...Here's a Groat Photoplay " Without Sox, Bat With Uh1 By S. A. DeWitt H i I THE SOCIALIST For Benjamin Feigenbaum, 1860-1932...
...A taste of this novel problem will be dished up to the convention in the report of President Green on unemployment insurance...
...I know I tent you message* as clear As the blue depth of mountain atmosphere In which my senses danced...
...Farewell to a Noble Son...
...And it Is the bounden duty of the labor movement to win a just income to all labor engaged in making goods which are shipped by Interstate commerce...
...We are already looking forward to having larger quarters, rather than split our orgsnization up into ward branches...
...impressarlo of The New Leader, for putting me on to a thrill such as I have not felt inside of a movie house in many years...
...That was all Bernie had to say about what proved for my wife and me to be a momentous experience...
...J^EVER in these late years has the American Federation of Labor been up against the real thing as it is right now...
...I know I said All that might ttir a soul that wa* nut dead...
...It tells the story of the Courrieres mine explosion of 1906 in which 1,400 miners were entrapped, and most of them perished...
...That in itself is unbelievably sad...
...Christ, ., And yet, never for once Is the restraint of reality loosened...
...Jean . . . Jean" intoning eerily through the plaihy darkness...
...Even so much is rather defensive than progressive...
...Even your passing from the living scene will only leave us the poorer few words In your column...
...And I must make a clamor down the wide Green slopes, through town and countryside...
...Only the Beginning But that is only the beginning of the new duties falling upon the organized labor movement...
...The unions strung together in the Federation have lost too large a fraction of their numbers, their wage rates have been hit too hard, their drop in employment is too severe for them to think they can hide in some obscure, conservative corner until the depression blows over and the employers are again ready to make concessions in the terms of work...
...A Shorter Work-Week To the full credit of the trade union movement may it be said that at the front of every program of betterment out of the depression is its insistence to cut the hours of the working wee' snd add to the pay...
...Our first meeting after election (Nov...
...But it can be forgiven only if with the coming convention the old-line, farcial-pathetic, so-called nonpartisan policy of the trade union body is shunned and shaken as the miserable failure it is, so far as concerns the rank and file of the membership and the unorganized workers who look to it for their lead...
...Aw, lay off, you simp," comes the rejoinder from the White Way wiseacre, "who gives a whoop In Hooeyville for plays about the 'woiking elsss'f , . . Now here's what I call a picture . . . Gretty Gsrber, In "The Busted Brassiere', that'll pack 'em in...
...It has to do more with first aid to the industrially injured than to put a stop to the crunching of the juggernaut to make larger number of victims...
...Just send the ususl bundle of 50...
...Just enough conversation to title the scenes is used...
...The sound is now part of my hesrt bests...
...Thii* I must call until you come to me...
...Let me thsnk Bernie Feinman, theatrical ad...
...In the vast field of social welfare legislation, whether in the several states or in Washington, the American Federation of Labor and its constituent unions will have to take an active and aggressive part...
...But I must climb each day upon the height And fill my being with a rare delight...
...For the purposes of "Comradeship" the date is set over to a time a few years after the World War...
...The search of the old miner for his grandson Jean through the labyrinth of disaster is unforgettable...
...The realism of the fire and ruin inside of the mine clutches you at once, and through the entire reel you become pert of the terror and anguish that ensue...
...Labor will have to leave to Andrew Mellon alone the pursuit of the will-o'-the-wisp of the lost old, good days...
...And somewhere insids of the wills of my being there Is laughter too, mad mysterical laughter...
...It is a Germsn picture with a minimum of talk...
...Of itself this moment of pitiable weakness may be forgotten...
...15) was so Isrge thst I really did not hsve enough papers to go sround...
...The) spirit of humanity and working class common interest prevail, and off they go to the rescue...
...Come up, come up from out your living grave* I 'Drive out the terror that you still are tlavetl 'Climb up, climb up to where I ttand and see...
...But now that it is so much harder to secure such demands through action on the industrial field there Is no alternative but to make the drive through political action...
...Now I want to rescind thst order...
...Tell me, Buddy Brosdwsy, tell me if there Is any boxoffice magic in thst sort of colorless, unattractive snd sexless stuff...
...I know I mads A song of courage, but you seemed afraid...
...That la the cue for the A. F. of L. to go after the thirty-hour week...
...And we have the assurance thst our meetings will be even better attendee...
...By Joseph E. Cohen Organized Labor Faces Task Of Making New Political Policy "Non-Partisan" Policy a Pathetic Failure, Says Writeró A. F. of L. Must Give a Lead to Struggle for Shorter Work-Week...
...In the most momentous political campaign in the time of any of its officers this organized trade union movement has sat on the side-lines so far as any effect on the election for President went...
...No cheap melodramatic contortions, no appeal to anything but a mature Intelligence...
...The mine Is on the Franco-German border...
...To them, more than any laborlegislative association or civic organization, comes the big responsibility to shspe up the measures from the standpoint of those who are the workers and to round up sentiment and strength to make those measures into law...
...ryO you not hear me call...
...the old msn calling to his lost boy . .. the twanging pathos hss psssed my esr drums...
...The bitterness and hate sre still smouldering, snd when the Germans hear about the explosion there Is much debate over any attempt to help the French workers caught In the pit of death...
...And lonely look upon the world that still Awaits you in the dawn beyond the hill...
...To the unions which are emptying their treasuries and exhausting the means of their employed members with relief assessments, only public and permanent unemployment insurance can do mercifully what is now done barbarously even by public relief agencies, keep outof-work members inside the ranks and prevent the forming of such hordes of strike-breakers as could ruin any union...
...No sloppy sex-mush, no stuffed shirts, no torso nudity of temptresses, no mansions and no butlers, no pistol shots and shrieks in the dark, no goggle-eyed, leering mystery monsters . . . nothing but the lives snd tragic incidents of workers in the mines...
...The producers psy you a splendid compliment with this plsy...
...No More Puss-in-the-Corner There must be no more of the childish game of a Puss-in-theCorner...
...of men frantically aware that help is coming, of hope for life renewed, mount* ing, shrieking laughter of the old man who stumbles over his boy, grips the limp body and Lends down to listen for a pulse of life . . . and hears a faint beat...
...And I do not intend to be sparing at all with words in praise of a picture play that for sheer reality snd emotional dynamics surpssses anything that has been produced and exhibited in this Hollywooden land of ours...
...Changes His Mind...
...You mutt not see 'The dawn beyond . . . the Hill it only meant 'For ms to tit on high . . . remain content 'Upon the plains...../'" And even now you stand Battalions frightened by an old command...
...And it has nothing to do with taming the wild monster into being a machine to serve labor and the nation...
...Well, for one of the many thousands who have been uprooted out of complacency snd boredom toward the cinema by this "Comradeship", let me whisper to the stars, that the box-office of the Europa has a "natwrsl" all its own...
...With these to start, every measure advanced for the ssving of Industry and the betterment of labor snd the nation must be put forward by the American Federation of Labor, to be true to Its own faith thst labor must depend on Itself for its own salvation...
...Frank Jeffries, Organizer, Camden, N. J...
...The New Leader: You recently received an order from me to the effect that you sre to cut our order of Leaders to 25 instead of 50...
...In that particular tragedy the German miners crossed the frontier ss a volunteer rescue party and helped greatly in aaving the few who scaped death...
...For Ben Feigenbaum Good old Comrade, suppose I merely give my poem as it appears above to your memory...
...I shouted down Through volleys of your indecision...

Vol. 14 • January 1932 • No. 21


 
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