top
East Bay
East Bay
Indybay
Indybay
Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz
Indybay
Regions
Indybay Regions North Coast Central Valley North Bay East Bay South Bay San Francisco Peninsula Santa Cruz IMC - Independent Media Center for the Monterey Bay Area North Coast Central Valley North Bay East Bay South Bay San Francisco Peninsula Santa Cruz IMC - Independent Media Center for the Monterey Bay Area California United States International Americas Haiti Iraq Palestine Afghanistan
Topics
Newswire
Calendar
Features
From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Sun Mar 29 2020
Lessons from Depression-era Mutual Aid
Learning from the Past, Preparing for the Future in the Age of Coronavirus
anonymous writes: As coronavirus spreads and the death toll begins to climb, our most immediate concern is (and should remain) staying healthy and supporting our communities through the immediate crisis. As radicals, however, we must also begin to strategize how we will respond to the economic collapse that will continue to affect our lives long after a vaccine or herd immunity render the virus itself a past issue. Looking back to our local history, we can learn a great deal from Great Depression era worker self-organizing and mutual aid.

Most of us are familiar with the State-sponsored Works Project Administration (WPA), but few are aware of the massive network of self-help mutual aid cooperatives that were autonomously organized by unemployed workers years in advance of the State response. The famous novelist and Socialist politician Upton Sinclair based his 1934 run for Governor of California on what he called the End Poverty In California (EPIC) plan, which proposed to use public money to strengthen and expand self-help worker cooperatives as the fabric of a new economy.

The best-case scenario for our efforts as anti-capitalists and revolutionaries is to simultaneously alleviate the worst effects of this crisis on our communities and create lasting networks of interdependence and empowerment. The lifestyle of going to work every day, paying our rent on the first of the month, and channeling our desires into the purchase of consumer goods is currently in question. We are acting in a time when massive changes that recently seemed impossible are occurring daily, even within the centers of power. Housing for all suddenly makes a great deal of sense when keeping warm and healthy may reduce hospital crowding, as does fully socialized medicine, freeing those incarcerated for nonviolent ‘crimes,’ and preventing some individuals from hoarding essentials to the detriment of the health of others.

Read More

Related Features: Know Your Rights During COVID-19 Shelter In Place Orders | Police State Expansion Continues Even During COVID-19 Pandemic | Homeless Families Take Action in Time of Housing and Health Crisis | Santa Cruz Police Evict Unhoused Community, Despite Pandemic | California on Coronavirus Lockdown
10/20/20 Nationwide Marches Honor RBG, Urge Getting Out the Vote to Defeat Trump Front Page | Womyn | San Francisco | California | U.S. | Government & Elections10/15/20 City Council and City Manager Advance Construction Projects Under False Pretenses Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Health, Housing & Public Services | Government & Elections | Santa Cruz Indymedia10/08/20 Glide Memorial's Ongoing Work on Behalf of Economic Justice Front Page | Racial Justice | Labor & Workers | Global Justice & Anti-Capitalism | San Francisco | Immigrant Rights10/03/20 Demonstrators in Cities Across the Country Demand Justice for Breonna Taylor Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Racial Justice | Womyn | Central Valley | Peninsula | U.S.10/01/20 Demonstrators Fear Civil Rights Setbacks with Growing Conservative Majority on SCOTUS Front Page | Womyn | South Bay | East Bay | North Bay / Marin | North Coast | California | U.S. | Government & Elections09/24/20 Facebook Suspends Accounts Over Online Event Targeting Coastal GasLink Pipeline Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Racial Justice | Health, Housing & Public Services | Media Activism & Independent Media | Peninsula | U.S. | International09/14/20 Climate Change Takes Center Stage as the West Coast Burns and Burns Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Health, Housing & Public Services | Global Justice & Anti-Capitalism | North Bay / Marin | North Coast | California | Santa Cruz Indymedia09/06/20 Antioch Strikers Call for Immediate Termination of Officer Michael Mellone Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Racial Justice | East Bay09/06/20 OPD Regularly Ignores CPRA Requests, Issues Boilerplate Responses Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Media Activism & Independent Media | East Bay | California | Government & Elections09/06/20 Students March on Mission District Police Station, Demand Funds Be Redistributed Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Education & Student Activism | San Francisco09/06/20 Town Announces Police Sergeant Will Resign After Racially Profiling Black Merchant Front Page | Police State & Prisons | North Bay / Marin
We are 100% volunteer and depend on your participation to sustain our efforts!

Donate

donate now

$ 162.00 donated
in the past month

Get Involved

If you'd like to help with maintaining or developing the website, contact us.

Publish

Publish your stories and upcoming events on Indybay.

IMC Network