Jane McAlevey, longterm labor organizer and author of No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age, was the guest today on Your Call Radio. Following are my notes from what she had to day.
Need to shift away from deep organizing to shallow mobilizing
The Women’s Marches were incredible, especially small rural towns
How do we translate it?
The Right’s key is to sow division with fear
Trump won because the Democratic Party has failed most working class people in this country, black, brown, and white.
Now is an outsider moment.
To keep the momentum, we must have a longer-term attention span, do power analysis and strategic thinking.
Think globally, act locally.
Must figure out: 1) how to take over locally; 3) elect local leaders
Go to town council meeting, take over neighborhood or union, then town council
Figure out how to actually win
We need a Tea Party-like structure within the Democratic Party
It will take time and patience
Must build real, high-participation organizations and sustain that structural power, which we aren’t doing.
We’re out-strategized by the Right
Not everything is sexy, like taking control of your local Democratic Party
The work is messy and hard
Build power locally and amalgamate it higher up
We can build big, win, and keep it democratic and progressive
Focus on how do I become a precinct leader? Congressional Districts are too big to start with
The Right started at the local level
Take on yes or no campaigns
How do you build a class movement that is intersectional?
We must tackle and overcome race and gender because we have to in order to win
We don’t wake up wondering how to talk about identity
When you do a union campaign you’re not picking who you relate to
It’s structure based, not self-selecting
Most of the people we need aren’t coming to our meetings
You must overcome the complexities of various identities