Saturday, September 1, 2012

After African Police kill 34 Striking Platinum Mine Workers, 270 Fellow Minors now Being Charged with Murder.

It can’t happen here, right?

American’s already have a hard time imagining the horrors we read about in the newspapers from ever happening here. Outrageous worker abuses, even killings. But since 2008 and the tea party emergence, we’ve seen a Republican Party change overnight. In an uncompromising radicalized movement, just how long will it be before something unthinkable happens. Already we're seeing conservatives offer up austere changes that only affect the victims of the Great Recession; the poor, labor and seniors. Unthinkable once, sure, but not anymore. It's even been packaged as courageous acts of leadership, and not something repugnant.  

Try to wrap your minds around the events that took place in Africa against striking miners. Can it happen here? Did you ever think it could happen anywhere?  
NY Times: As the police opened fire on workers engaged in a wildcat strike at a platinum mine two weeks ago, killing 34 people, Mr. Ramaphosa, now a multimillionaire business tycoon and senior leader of the governing African National Congress, found himself in a very different position: on the board of the company the workers were striking against, the London-based Lonmin. Ramaphosa (was once) the firebrand leader of the National Union of Mineworkers.
That’s right, a former union leader sat by while this was allowed to happen. With American rage against unions here, and the widening gap of social inequality, we’re starting to mirror events like this happening around the world:
Now, as the shock of the killings reverberates through the nation, seething rage from the poor in one of the world’s most unequal societies, (they’re) sensing that the A.N.C. has created a wealthy black elite, including men like Mr. Ramaphosa, without changing the lives of ordinary people.
Any of this sound familiar? If you thought that was bad, get this:
Prosecutors have said they are charging 270 miners arrested after the melee, (and) not the police officers who fired the bullets, with the murder of their colleagues.
It appears the ruling authority is well protected. Will we even notice?

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