The Spark

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

Gary Walkowicz:
Time the Workers Are Heard

Oct 27, 2014

The following is a leaflet that workers at Ford’s Dearborn Truck plant circulated in the plant in support of Gary Walkowicz, running for congress in Michigan’s 12th district.

I am running for Congress because I think it is time that the working class is heard in an election.

People know that I have stood up and spoken out against concessions and the attacks on Ford workers and autoworkers. At the UAW Convention, I have twice run for president in order to bring a voice of the workers into the Convention where it is not normally heard. For the same reason, I decided to run for Congress because the voice of the working class is never heard in the government elections. The two parties only represent the big corporations and banks, who are prospering while the working class is suffering.

Autoworkers have suffered wage and benefit concessions, 2-tier wages, reduced break time, cuts to retirees’ health care, all of which have led to a lowered standard of living and worsened working conditions. But we are not alone. We are part of a working class and what has happened to us has also happened to almost every worker in this country. In most cases, other workers are even worse off.

The attacks on workers do not end on the job. In cities where we live, with the public services we use, in the schools where our children go to school, conditions are bad and continue to get worse.

But while the majority of the population is suffering, the wealth is there to solve these problems. But this wealth is being hoarded by a handful of banks, large corporations and a few rich individuals. It is an outrage that a few people are hoarding the money which could be used to solve society’s problems.

The money is there to get rid of 2nd-tier wages and bring everyone’s pay up so that workers can have a decent standard of living. The wealth is there to hire everyone who wants to work and make sure that no one is overworked. The wealth is there to ensure that retirees don’t have to go back to work to survive. The money is there to hire the teachers and improve our children’s schools. The money is there to hire back all the public workers and construction workers who are needed to fix the streets and bridges and sewers. We have every right to demand that the wealth that workers created is used for our benefit.

I think that many workers are angry and fed up. I am running for Congress so that working people can use their vote to protest and speak out against what is happening to us. Our situation will not be changed with a vote. It will take a fight of the working class to make the changes that are needed. But a vote can let people prepare for the fight to come.

I am running on a slate with three other independent candidates. I am running in the 12th Congressional District and Sam Johnson, a retired Chrysler worker, is running in the 13th District. Most of the people who work at Dearborn Truck live in either the 12th or 13th District and can vote for one of us. Mary Anne Hering and Kenneth Jannot, Jr. are teachers running for Dearborn School Board.

I ask you for your support. If you agree with what we are saying, talk to your friends, neighbors and relatives about our campaign. We don’t have millions of dollars like the two parties do; our campaign depends on the support of working people.

Our campaign stands for a Working Class Fight Based on a Working Class Policy.