You are on page 1of 12

Newsletter of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) in Wisconsin

Volume 9, Number 3

Labor Day 2016

Dying to Live Hunger Strikers Kept on
the Brink of Death by Retaliatory DOC
by FW Ben Turk of Milwaukee (a lead organizer in
supporting the hunger strike in conjunction with the
IWW's Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee,
which we also hope to establish here in Madison)

Waupun WI, August 22 -- According to a letter from
hunger striker LaRon McKinley, the Dying to Live
hunger strike
against solitary
confinement at
Institution (WCI) has
become a serious
health crisis after
seventy-six days.
On August 15, the
Department of
Corrections (WI
DOC) decided to
suspend the force
feeding they have
subjected the
prisoners to since
June 17. They allowed McKinley and Cesar DeLeon,
the two most committed hunger strikers, to go
without food or water for 72 hours, until they were
severely dehydrated. Then they tube fed them again
on Thursday August 18.

On Saturday August 13, a coalition of prisoner
supporters from across the state gathered in
Waupun to protest DOC practices and show
solidarity with the hunger strike. They were greeted
by offensive gestures, threats and insults by local
residents, some of whom likely work at the prison.

“We believe Warden Foster has changed the force
feeding regimen in response to our protest,
unfortunately, the changes are retaliatory: increasing
the pain, harm and danger these men are
experiencing in an effort to break their will,” says
“Presently, and for most of this week, we have been Chance Zombor, who led the march on August 13.
under retaliatory attack by our warden as a direct
consequence of our political efforts... to force an end A sudden intake of calories by a starved and
dehydrated person causes violent metabolic shifts,
to prolonged Administrative Confinement,” the
letter from McKinley reads.
leading to a potentially fatal condition called refeeding syndrome. WI DOC has begun a regimen that

is very likely to cause re-feeding syndrome.
According to Wikipedia, “the shifting of electrolytes
and fluid balance increases cardiac workload and
heart rate. This can lead to acute heart failure.
Oxygen consumption is also decreased which strains
the respiratory system.”

Seventy-two hours without water is a well known
and medically held time limit that would and is
generally believed to kill most people.”

The hunger strikers believe Waupun staff will
continue force feeding them every 72 hours in an
effort to make the hunger strike as unbearable as
When the United States Military was force-feeding
possible. McKinley's letter goes on to describe his
suspected terrorists on hunger strike in Guantanamo body's response, which mirrors the symptoms of reBay, they took care to first intravenously re-hydrate feeding syndrome: “due to the stress and ordeal that
the starving people to prevent re-feeding syndrome. our bodies had gone through, they kind of reacted as
In Waupun, the DOC only allows the prisoners to
if they had been poisoned when said fluids were
drink lead-polluted water from the 165 year old
eventually forced into the stomach.”
institution, which causes diarrhea and exacerbates
their dehydration.
Outside supporters are demanding that the DOC
allow LaRon McKinley and Cesar DeLeon to drink
McKinley suspects the DOC is intentionally keeping bottled water, and that Wisconsin meet the striker's
them on the brink of death. According to his letter, central demand: a one-year cap on any form of
after 42 hours without food or water—because they solitary confinement. They are asking people to
refused to drink Waupun's polluted water, he and
contact Warden Brian Foster, DOC Secretary Jon
Cesar DeLeon, “were diagnosed as seriously
Litscher, and Governor Scott Walker. More
dehydrated, and the tube feeding was then
information, including phone numbers and email
recommended, but this time they made us both go addresses can be found at
exactly 30 more hours, to exactly 72 hours each.

Originally submitted to it's Going Down
( on August 14

The Dying to Live hunger strike started on June 7 and
within ten days WI DOC had acquired court
This afternoon 35 protesters [including several
authorization to force feed the prisoners. Two
people from Madison] marched around Waupun
prisoners, Cesar DeLeon and LaRon McKinley have
Correctional Institution (WCI) in downtown Waupun remained steadfast in their protest despite the force
WI to protest the Wisconsin Department of
feedings, “We ain’t taking anything voluntarily until
Correction’s (WI DOC) use of indefinite solitary
we accomplish our objective, which is to put a one
confinement and to spread the word about an
year cap on the use of administration confinement
upcoming nation-wide prisoner protest movement
(long term solitary confinement).” Cesar DeLeon
that will begin on September 9, 2016.
wrote in a letter dated July 27.
“The DOC has been force-feeding our friends for
more than 50 days now, three times a day. There is
no reason to shove a tube down someone’s nose
three times a day other than to hurt them and coerce
them into giving up their protest. We won’t let
Secretary Litscher’s goons torture our friends
anymore.” Said march participant Chance Zombor.

Today’s solidarity action was called for by Milwaukee
IWOC, the Incarcerated Worker’s Organizing
Committee of the Industrial Workers of the World
(IWW). IWOC has been expanding the militant labor
union’s activities into combating prison slavery and
conditions of confinement for incarcerated people.

The protesters carried banners expressing solidarity
with the hunger strikers, condemning force feeding
and solitary confinement. They chanted, beat drums
and made a lot of noise, hoping that the prisoners
would be able to hear them through the prison’s
walls. They promoted their action through social
media using #DyingToLiveWI.

They also carried banners promoting the September
9 national prisoner strike, which was called for by
prisoners across the country and which IWOC has
been supporting. Milwaukee IWW members have
vowed to continue pressuring the DOC “until our
fellow worker’s demands are met and Wisconsin
truly ends the barbaric practice of long term solitary

Voices From Behind Wisconsin Prison Gates
compiled by the Milwaukee IWW

Voices From Green Bay Correctional Institute:
"This system is something else. I've learned to
Voices From Columbia Correctional Institute:
appreciate the simplest of god's gifts. That's saying
"There isn't anything within that wired fence or four
something in a place where instant coffee and noodles
walls that ever can or ever will bring me any measure of are considered luxuries."
happiness....Every part of the day is the worst, but if I
had to be specific I would say the wake up is the worst! "No, I'm not treated well. It's prison. Inmates are not
Every day I have to overcome the initial shock but once the problem. It's the food, the medical care, things like
I calm and the anxiety subsides I get by."
"People here treat you like dogs."
Voices From New Lisbon Correctional Institute:
"I hope all is good for those on the front line fighting
"I believe that young black men have been
for change for the people."
industrialized and used to create jobs and opportunities
for others. Prison was probably created to house the
Voices From Fox Lake Correctional Institute:
deviant and protect society but then it somehow
"The political and economical structure our country is morphed into a way to employ rural residents and
built on is a facade that offers a false sense of freedom improve their quality of life. They did and we suffered in
and security....Anybody can find themselves behind
the process.”
prison bars, I've heard some really sad stories the last
couple of years. My own story pales in comparison to
"Once we are behind these walls its like we are dead
quite a few of them."
until we resurface back to the streets like a second

Voices From Oshkosh Correctional Institute:
"I'm fighting with the Wisconsin Department of
Corrections Staff at Oshkosh Correctional Institution
about some back pay owed to me for working on
weekends, because the sergeant who hired me
threatened me with the risk of losing my job, if I refuse
to work 7 days a week when the job was supposed to
be only from Monday through Fridays."

and potential, yet we only use it to hurt each other
instead of becoming a force to change the world."

Voices from Stanley Correctional Institute:
"I read a book once that called the prisoner system in
America the industrialized prison complex because it's
really about oppressing the minority population (all
colors of people not just non-whites) for the profits
they get from the tax payers and other businesses that
"I've always said the seventies were perhaps the most cater to prisons nationwide. I agree with you that law
effective time for political activism. They were
enforcement is particularly bent on non-whites, but
conscious of the mighty mammoth. Today, we lack
that shouldn't count whites out of the discussion! I am
blatant struggle. It takes bogus practices by militarized in the same boat as so many of the black, Mexican,
cops for true protest to commence. Even then, it only Asian and other ethnic peoples who are in prison. In
seems to be ephemeral."
here I have a number just like everybody else."
"Yes, the DOC does use us for
cheap labor. Especially the
inmates that work for Badger
State Industries. These guys
make signs for the state and
the prison only pays them at
most one dollar an hour. What
can we do? Most of us are just
happy to have something to do
regardless of what they pay us.
I have worked within the
prison system since I got here.
The most I made was like 30¢
an hour!"
"You are absolutely right about
how the prisons exploit family
and friends out of money at
much inflated prices than it
would be on the street."
"Poverty is in the interest of the wealthy. Without it the
wealthy are unable to solicit cheap labor for the
"undignified" positions that you spoke of. And a lot of
times, I don't believe that these politicians truly wish to
declare a "War on Poverty". Social workers, police
officers, judges, etc. depend on it. But I am fully with
you on making a change--no matter how small. There
just needs to be a sort of shift in what has become a
social fact."

Voices From Taycheedah Correctional Institute:
"The care for medical and physical health is very poor.
It's like if you don't push yourself to be/do better when
it comes to your mental state you basically "will in fact
lose your mind." The prison system is quick to medicate
someone. Then in turn that individual becomes a
zombie, just walking, not knowing stop from go."

Voices From Waupun Correctional Institution:
"The penological community believe that by closing
Voices From Red Granite Correctional Institute:
down the isolation units those prisoners are "shifting
"Prison is tougher--it's an every day struggle for me. My
the balance of power." Therefore, the threat must be
parents can't afford to send me $ or help me get a pair
repressed and/or modified into conformity through
of shoes, tv, because my Dad is disabled Mom can
"Behavior Control Therapy" or administrative
barely pay the bills, so I don't even ask for help."
confinement. Behavior Control Therapy deals with the
"It's crazy how we as a people can have so much power

literal brainwashing and enslavement of an individual's
mind. It retrogresses the individual into the character
role of a child and reinforces the need for paternal
"I witness mentally ill prisoners down the range
decomping every day. One such elderly prisoner has
been in AC (long-term segregation) shipped here and
there for over 20 years, since about 1998."
"These skullduggery and dilatory tactics illustrate that
DOC (by facts and extrapolations) is not serious nor
sincere in their words and will never be proactive in
these issues of solitary confinement constraint. They
will only make small window show changes to get the
attention and focus off them
and not to appear the only
state out of the fad. Only if
there is pressure and
monitoring by society will they
follow through."

and the highest rate of incarceration in the world,
according to international prison population databases.
The total incarceration rate for the state of Wisconsin is
similar to the U.S. Average. What makes Wisconsin
unique is its exceptionally high rate of imprisonment for
African American males. Wisconsin’s African American
male incarceration rate is the highest in the United
States. In fact, the rate is 32% higher than the second
worst ranking state (Oklahoma), according to the U.S.
2010 Census counts.
Given wide disparities in income among racial groups in
Wisconsin and the intense levels of segregation in the
Milwaukee metropolitan area, large numbers of exoffenders released from Wisconsin correctional

"WI-DOC is trying to fool the
public into believing that they
are correcting things. But they
are doing very little. We need
to expose them."
"Right now I get $4 every two
weeks, after they take 10% off
my account I have $3.60 a total
of $8 a month. I spend that
much, or close too, for laundry
soap. Wash your own clothes
in the sink in your room.…
Without our help – kitchen,
sweeping, showers – we help
run the prison. Without us I'm
not sure they'd work in certain
parts of the prison."

institutions reside in the poorest neighborhoods of
Milwaukee – areas which have seen dramatic job losses
and foreclosure actions during the economic

Voices From Wisconsin Secure Program Facility:
“In this Wisconsin Dept. of Correction we have to pay
for an alleged co-pay each time we need to see a nurse, – “Wisconsin's Mass Incarceration of African American
doctor, etc. Many walk around sick to avoid debt and so Males” by Employment and Training Institute of
they can go to canteen.”
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 2013
Wisconsin Prison Overview

What is IWOC?

“Two issues stand out when reviewing incarceration
Members of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)
rates for Wisconsin residents. First is that the United
have created the IWOC, the Incarcerated Workers
States has the highest number of incarcerated persons Organizing Committee, which functions as a liaison for

prisoners to organize each other, unionize, and build
solid bridges between prisoners on the inside and
fellow workers on the outside. Prison is a setup, a big
business, there to make money off the People. Neither
the setup, nor the slavery inside of prisons can be
combated without the conscious participation of
prisoners and the working class on the outside through
mutual aid, solidarity, and the building of working
relationships that transcend prison walls and the
politics of mass incarceration. The IWOC has been
actively reaching out to prisoners while at the same
time prisoners have been reaching out to the IWW for
representation and assistance in building a prisoners
union. The IWOC has taken up the cause and is helping
prisoners in every facility organize and build a union
branch for themselves, which will together form a
powerful IWW Industrial Union.

prisoners who agree with the IWW Constitution and
believe that to truly change prison conditions prisoners
must be organized and working towards such goals
with the help and support of the working class on the
outside. Prisoners will be full fledged members of the
IWW with their own local prison branch to maintain and
develop and will have the same rights and
responsibilities of members on the outside. However,
due the exploitative nature of the prison system,
prisoners are granted free IWW membership, and will
not be required to pay dues while in prison. Outside
members of the IWOC will be in direct communication
with prisoners and provide organizing training, support
and guidance in union building, solidarity, and
collaborative actions.

We have a world to win and nothing to lose but our
chains. In every ghetto, barrio, trailer park, and prison
To achieve this cage slave/wage slave alliance the IWOC cell, working class solidarity will prevail!
is accepting IWW membership applications from

Statement on the 2016 Presidential Election
by David Williams, Former Green Party Activist and
Member of the Madison IWW
As enshrined in our famous 1908 constitutional plank the
Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) does not officially
affiliate with any political parties, even left-wing third
parties and candidates. However, individual Wobblies are
free to vote their conscience. And as a movement for
radical emancipation it is difficult to ignore the capitalist
state apparatus and corporate-dominated U.S. political
system. These are my own personal observations.

The crude manner in which the Sanders delegates and
supporters were kicked-to-the-curb and the abject manner
of Bernie's final surrender to and total endorsement of
Hillary Clinton only served to drive the lesson even further
home, resulting in the deep disaffection and alienation of
many Sanders supporter from the Democratic Party and
its neo-liberal pro-corporate managers and candidates.

For me the Bernie Sanders campaign highlighted two
major realities:

Most of these disillusioned and angry Sanders supporters
will hold their noses this November and vote for Clinton as
the Lesser Evil to the Trump Bogey-Man. But a significant
minority are rejecting the false logic of lesser-evilism and
rallying around Green Party presidential candidate Jill

1) The huge wellspring of potential support in this country
(especially among millennials) for major liberal-progressive
reforms called for by a self-proclaimed social-democrattype "socialist" and even regarded as authentic socialism
in some quarters. And being able to run competitive
campaigns in many states on a financial foundation of
numerous small donations.

A big vote for Jill Stein in the November election would be
a great symbolic protest against the corporate two-party
system. Of course it would also revive hopes among
Greens and left-independents that a major progressive
third-party can actually be built in the U.S. at the local,
state and national levels to competitively challenge the
two main corporate parties.

2) The institutional impossibility of serious progressives
ever capturing control of the corporate-controlled
Democratic Party and its apparatus, due to a combination
of overwhelming corporate media domination, top-down
party patronage, top-down appointment of hundreds of
party "super-delegates", closed and rigged primaries and
other manipulations of the electoral machinery inside and
outside the party, etc.

I will vote for Jill Stein this November. At the same time
my own view as a former Green movement and party
activist dating back to the 1990s is that whatever the
success of Stein's campaign in 2016 the institutional
obstacles to the long-range project of building a seriouslycompetitive progressive third-party in the U.S. are too
daunting. These obstacles include steep requirements in
many states for third-party ballot status, a winner-take-all

election system (as opposed to proportional
representation as in Europe and other countries),and,
above all, the millions of dollars necessary to wage
competitive election campaigns both on the ground and in
corporate media markets at the state, national and even
municipal levels. While Bernie Sanders demonstrated that
in exceptional circumstances such vast sums may be raised
from small donors most candidates for higher office must
usually depend on deep-pocket capitalist donors.

Progressive and radical third-party electoral efforts could
be a useful educational arm for direct action movements
BUT ONLY IF the main axis of the overall movement thrust
is on educating, organizing and mobilizing for mass direct
action. Otherwise the notion of building a progressive
third-party to work through The System itself to
fundamentally reform The System is almost as much a
delusion and trap as trying to fundamentally reform the
Democratic Party. The demands and challenges of
operating within the corporate political system will
Given the growing discontent (likely to grow exponentially inevitably suck most of the energy and resources of left
whether Trump or Clinton is on the White House after Jan social movements into the dominant political structure
2017) an independent left third party may indeed be able which becomes their main focus and axis of activity.
to elect some candidates at the local and even state levels
in the years ahead. But in given the obstacles of the of the In such circumstances progressives parties more often
corporate political system it is highly unlikely that even
than not become institutionally bogged-down while their
with years of strenuous efforts such any progressive third ability to mobilize in the streets and in the workplaces is
party will ever be able to elect the thousands of
dissipated. This in turn further weakens their capacity to
candidates at the state
bring mass outside
and national levels (i.e.,
pressure to bear against
Congress) required to
the local, regional or
legislatively enact
national ruling class.
radical reforms in the
And the pressures for
American economic and
compromise with be copolitical system.
opted by the corporate
enemy are
Even if theoretically
conceivable such a longrange electoral and
As a purely electoral
legislative reform effort
organization what has
(analogous to trying to
the U.S. Green Party
radically transform the
accomplished in recent
years? While it once
Democratic Party) will in the next 10 to 15 years likely be
called itself as both a "party-movement" and a
overtaken and overwhelmed by the combined multiple
"movement party" it became a largely election-time
crises of American society, including worsening poverty
phenomenon with little day-to-day active and organic
and inequality and another economic crash possibly more connection to movements on-the-ground. Consequently,
severe than 2008-2009.; extreme weather, droughts, food the U.S. Green Party has amounted in most states and
and water emergencies and other consequences of
localities to little more than an ephemeral election-time
runaway global warming; new incurable pandemics;
pressure group on the left flank of the Democratic Party.
spreading foreign wars, arms races and domestic social
violence; unresolved and ever more sharpening race-class Time will tell if the Jill Stein campaign significantly changes
divisions and clashes, to name some of the most urgent
this legacy and reorients the Green Party primarily toward
on-going movement-building and direct action. In the
meantime the Stein campaign is a major rallying point for
These fatal structural problems of late capitalism cannot progressives and radicals against the corporate political
be successfully addressed through a left party attempting system and a prime venue to win many people to the
to operate inside the thoroughly corporate-dominated
longer-range radical project of building a mass directpolitical system. Instead, a new American radical
action movement OUTSIDE of the electoral arena.
movement must educate, organize and mobilize an array
of direct-action movements using a variety of tactics in the The IWW has a rich historical tradition and conceptual
workplaces, in the communities and in the streets to
arsenal on the subject of direct action and could become
challenge corporate power at all levels.
well-positioned to play a key role in the formation of
future direct-action movements against the capitalist
power structure.



From its history and traditions the IWW is uniquely situated to explicitly counterpose an array of non-electoral
direct-action strategies and tactics to the liberal mirage of achieving major changes through the capitalist
political system. There are numerous precedents in IWW history for direct action beyond the workplace,
including free speech fights, antiwar protests, and movements involving the unemployed, students, tenants, the
homeless, prisoners, and anti-racist struggles. To the traditional arsenal of Wobbly direct-action strategies and
tactics can be added numerous methods of non-violent action formulated by other theorists and practitioners in
the past 100 years. Please see our accompanying handout on “The 198 Methods of Non-Violent Action” for more
Many IWW members who are employed are not in immediate workplace
organizing situations. Others are unemployed or are students or are retired.
These IWW members participate wherever possible in labor solidarity but may
otherwise be involved in a variety of non-workplace movements and campaigns.
Most of these activities are at the local level, often initiated and led by non-IWW
organizations, and not part of any broader IWW strategy. As such, these are
mainly reactive and ad-hoc responses to either local situations or wider
emergencies. Meanwhile, millions of Americans of working age are unemployed
while many who are employed are not presently in workplace organizing
situations. Yet they face the oppressive conditions of capitalist society and shall
have to be reached by means other than workplace union organizing.
The capitalist political system is designed to channel mass discontent into the electoral arena where corporate
and plutocratic money and media shape public discourse, choices are severely limited, class consciousness is
suppressed, and the potential physical power of the working class in direct action is effectively neutered. In
place of any indifferent or laissez-faire attitudes toward electoral politics we
should counterpose direct action in workplaces and in the streets to the
current reigning forms of left-liberal politics.

The disappointments and mass frustration which will follow the 2016 elections
(no matter who is in the White House) will push growing numbers of
Americans in the direction of non-electoral direct action. The IWW should
affirm the necessity of developing direct-action strategies beyond workplaces
at the local, regional and national level as part of a two-pronged approach
with the other prong being workplace organizing. We should seek wherever
possible to combining these two prongs in broad labor-community struggles.
We appreciate that development of regional and national IWW strategies will
be an evolutionary process wherein the specific organizational structures and
modes of planning and coordination will likely first emerge piecemeal from current practice and then be shaped
into broader and more integrated strategies and agendas. This process could begin through the IWW Organizing
Department or be the focus of a new committee and discussion group.
Should this Direct Action Resolution not win official passage at this convention we nonetheless encourage all
supporters of this perspective, relevant IWW committees and individual branches to begin a “horizontal”
discussion on how to develop IWW direct-action strategies at the local, regional and national levels and
coordinate our efforts in the movements and campaigns we are involved in.
– from the Madison IWW – during the convention you may reach our delegates at 608-216-5360.


198 Methods of Nonviolent Action, from, available at this convention as a handout.
Murray Bookchin. The Next Revolution: Popular Assemblies and the Promise of Direct Democracy. Verso, 2015, 198 pp.
CrimethInc. Expect Resistance: a CrimethInc. Field Manual. CrimethInc., 2008, 342 pp.
David Graeber. Direct Action: An Ethnography. AK Press, 2009, 568 pp.
Stephen Graham. Cities Under Siege: the New Military Urbanism. Verso, 2010, 402 pp.
Chris Hedges. Wages of Rebellion: the Moral Imperative of Revolt. Nation Books, 2015, 286 pp.
George Katsiaficas. The Subversion of Politics: European Autonomous Social Movements and the Decolonization of
Everyday Life. AK Press, 2006, 299 pp.
Staughton Lynd and Anfej Grubiac, eds. Wobblies & Zapatistas:
Conversations on Anarchism, Marxism and Radical History. PM
Press, 2008, 260 pp.
Robert McChesney & John Nichols. People Get Ready: the Fight
Against a Jobless Economy and a Citizenless Democracy. Nation
Books, 2016, 360 pp.
Adam Roberts & Timothy Garton Ash, eds. Civil Resistance &
Power Politics: the Experience of Nonviolent Action from Gandhi
to the Present. Oxford University Press, 2009, 409 pp.
Jeff Shantz. “On the Need For Infrastructures of Resistance.”
Anarcho-Syndicalist Review, Winter 2013, pp. 33-34,, available at this convention as a handout.
Gene Sharp. How Nonviolent Struggle Works. Albert Einstein
Institute, 2013, 147 pp.
Gene Sharp. Waging Nonviolent Struggle: 20th Century Practice and 21st Century Potential. Porter Sargent Publishers,
2005, 597 pp.
Kurt Schock. Unarmed Insurrection: People Power Movements in Nondemocracies. University of Minnesota Press,
2005, 228 pp.
Rebecca Solnit. A Paradise Built in Hell: the Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster. Penguin Books, 2010, 353
Nick Srnicek & Alex Williams. Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work. Verso, 2015, 245 pp.
Fred Thompson & Jon Bekken. The I.W.W., its first one hundred years, 1905-2005. Industrial Workers of the World,
2006, 246 pp.

Madison IWW GMB
P.O. Box 2442, Madison, WI 53701


Upcoming Social Action and Solidarity Committee Movies
by Martina Rippon
In September, the Madison IWW-GMB Social Action and Solidarity Committee
presents: “How Do We Get Our Information? Double Feature,” free and open
to the public, with discussion following the films, offered at the Madison Public
Library, downtown branch, on Monday, September 12, 2016 from 6:00-8:30 PM,
Left of the Dial: The Rise, Fall and Resurrection of America's First Liberal Talk
Radio Network, Air America Radio with Al Franker, Janeane Garofalo, Randi
Rhodes and Marc Maron. This is the inside story of the turbulent birth of Air America Radio, the nation’s
first liberal talk network, launched in 2004. It attempted to go head-to-head against the conservative
voices that dominate American talk radio during one of the most divisive election years in recent memory.
Born Again Free Speech: Victory of The Mic, 92.1 FM --“Democracy has never been handed down from
elites to those beneath them. Democracy must be proclaimed, organized around, fought for, and won.” –
Robert W. McChesney. The film’s jacket states, “Immediately following the Democratic gains in the 2006
Congressional elections, Clear Channel Corporation decided to switch the format of a Madison, Wisconsin
progressive talk station to sports programming. The station’s loyal fans said NO! to changing what seemed
like a perfect fit. Armed with only internet savvy and grassroots ingenuity, the devoted listening
community decided to fight to keep progressive talk on the air. Born Again Free Speech will take you
through the organizing process, introduce you to the people who did it, and share with you their spirited
victory against all odds.” Note: this is a 24/7 station; the Thom Hartmann program is one of its features.
Also in September (date not confirmed yet), we will be showing Hidden Colors 4: The Religion of White
Supremacy (2016). Hidden Colors is a documentary series about the real and untold history of people of
color around the globe. The film discusses some of the reasons the contributions of African and aboriginal
people have been left out of the pages of history.
Watch the Madison Activist Calendar, which is sent out by e-mail weekly (e-mail for
details) for other films in our fall series. October’s theme will be about elections, with selections from the
films Uncounted: The New Math of American Elections and Invisible Ballots: A Temptation for Electronic
Vote Fraud.
November’s theme will be revolution, showing Gene Sharp’s How to Start a Revolution and A Force More
Powerful about one of the 20th century’s most important and least-known stories—how nonviolent
resistance movements overcame oppression and authoritarian rule around the world.

Preamble to the IWW Constitution

Join the Madison IWW Today!
The IWW is a union for all workers, a union dedicated to organizing
on the job, in our industries and in our communities both to win
better conditions today and to build a world without bosses, a
world in which production and distribution are organized by
workers ourselves to meet the needs of the entire population, not
merely a handful of exploiters.
We are the Industrial Workers of the World because we organize
industrially – that is to say, we organize all workers on the job into
one union, rather than dividing workers by trade, so that we can
pool our strength to fight the bosses together.
Since the IWW was founded in 1905, we have recognized the need
to build a truly international union movement in order to confront
the global power of the bosses and in order to strengthen workers’
ability to stand in solidarity with our fellow workers no matter what
part of the globe they happen to live on.
We are a union open to all workers, whether or not the IWW
happens to have representation rights in your workplace. We
organize the worker, not the job, recognizing that unionism is not
about government certification or employer recognition but about
workers coming together to address our common concerns.
Sometimes this means striking or signing a contract. Sometimes it
means refusing to work with an unsafe machine or following the
bosses’ orders so literally that nothing gets done. Sometimes it
means agitating around particular issues or grievances in a specific
workplace, or across an industry.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.
There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among
millions of the working people and the few, who make up the
employing class, have all the good things of life.
Between these two classes a struggle must go on until the workers
of the world organize as a class, take possession of the means of
production, abolish the wage system, and live in harmony with the
We find that the centering of the management of industries into
fewer and fewer hands makes the trade unions unable to cope with
the ever growing power of the employing class. The trade unions
foster a state of affairs which allows one set of workers to be pitted
against another set of workers in the same industry, thereby helping
defeat one another in wage wars. Moreover, the trade unions aid
the employing class to mislead the workers into the belief that the
working class have interests in common with their employers.
These conditions can be changed and the interest of the working
class upheld only by an organization formed in such a way that all its
members in any one industry, or in all industries if necessary, cease
work whenever a strike or lockout is on in any department thereof,
thus making an injury to one an injury to all.
Instead of the conservative motto, "A fair day's wage for a fair day's
work," we must inscribe on our banner the revolutionary
watchword, "Abolition of the wage system."

Because the IWW is a democratic, member-run union, decisions
It is the historic mission of the working class to do away with
about what issues to address and what tactics to pursue are made capitalism. The army of production must be organized, not only for
by the workers directly involved.
everyday struggle with capitalists, but also to carry on production
when capitalism shall have been overthrown. By organizing
Meetings are on the first Monday of each month, 6:30 PM, at
industrially we are forming the structure of the new society within
Madison Teachers, Inc.., 821 Williamson St., Madison (enter in the the shell of the old.
back). You can send e-mail to:

TO JOIN: Mail this form with a check or money order for initiation and your first month’s dues to:
Madison IWW GMB, P.O. Box 2442, Madison, WI 53701
Initiation is the same as one month’s dues. Our dues are calculated according to your income.
If your monthly income is under $2000, dues are $11 a month.
If your monthly income is between $2000 and $3500, dues are $22 a month.
If your monthly income is over $3500 a month, dues are $33 a month.
____I affirm that I am a worker, and that I am not an employer.
____I agree to abide by the IWW constitution.
____I will study its principles and acquaint myself with its purposes.

Name: _____________________________________________
Address: ___________________________________________
City, State, ZIP Code: __________________________________
Occupation: ________________________________________
Phone: ______________ email: _________________________
Amount enclosed: ___________

Membership includes a subscription to to Prairie Fire and an electronic subscription to the Industrial Worker, newsletter of the IWW.

IWW – Madison Branch
P.O. Box 2442
Madison, WI

So, another Labor Day is upon us...…
… and that means another issue of Prairie Fire (besides being a day chosen by our government for the celebration of
labor to avoid May Day, which is when most of the rest of the world celebrates labor, in order to not remind people of
the reason that day was chosen, to commemorate the Haymarket martyrs, radical labor organizers who were framed
for a bombing at Haymarket Square, given a kangaroo court trial, and then executed)! We certainly cannot simply
trust the state when it comes to our labor and organizing rights, that's for sure!
In this issue, we offer:
● Pieces on the ongoing hunger strike at Waupun Correctional Institution and Incarcerated Worker organizing
Committee (IWOC) work in Wisconsin. Also, you'll find as an insert a copy of the Milwaukee IWW IWOC's
Voices from Behind Wisconsin's Prison Gates, issue 2.
● A reproduction of the leaflet we plan to distribute at the IWW convention over Labor Day weekend
supporting our resolution for developing a direct action strategy beyond workplaces and calling for
organization and action beyond the resolution
● A commentary by a local Fellow Worker on the presidential election, how it (inevitably) has failed people with
a left-leaning / progressive bent, and the need for organization and direct action beyond elections;
● And a description of the upcoming educational film screenings planned by the Madison IWW's Social Action
and Solidarity Committee
What we'd like to work on this fall:
 Establishing an active IWOC presence in Madison
 Starting a solidarity network in Madison
 Developing a new branch website
 And, of course, organizing workplaces
We're always looking for people who want to get active! Get in touch with us! (Contact information on other side.)