The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Pay Cut, Whether or Not You Agree!

Jul 16, 2012

Governor Jerry Brown, a Democrat, talking about budget deficits, pushed through a new pay cut on California State workers: 12 unpaid “furlough” days over the next year–one a month, amounting to a 4.6% pay cut.

This pay cut will make a big dent in state workers’ pocket books–especially since it comes on top of a 14% cut in 2009 under then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican.

SEIU Local 1000, which represents 93,000 California state workers–about half of the state’s unionized work force–announced that its members accepted the cuts by a two to one margin.

The vote was nothing but a show and workers knew it. Union leaders had already said the vote was non-binding, because the furlough deal was a “side-letter” agreement they had made with the governor and it didn’t need ratification. They told workers that, even if they voted no, the state would impose furloughs on them anyway. And, sure enough, Brown, the Democrat, backed by a Democratic legislature, imposed furloughs on the 11,600 workers in the two unions that had refused to go along.

So everyone finally had their pay cut. But some workers at least refused to stab themselves in the back. Better than helping the hit man bury you!