We Are All Goodyear Workers (part 2)

So Hollande went to India to act as a sales representative with 50 bosses around him, and tried his best to sell Dassault’s Rafale fighter plane… Dassault thanked the President. Some Ministers went to Davos, to show themselves among the largest multinationals and Emmanuel Macron, who pushes for the end of the 35-hour week, proclaimed that “the life of a business owner is often much harder than the life of an employee. We must never forget it.” What’s clear, though, is that Macron, Valls and Hollande always do their best to help and comfort those bosses whose life is so tough…

36 Rafale sold for Dassault, and as many measures taken against the workers

Supposedly to help create new jobs, Hollande plans to subsidize the bosses again, without getting anything in return. He plans to make the unemployment numbers go down: 500,000 long term unemployed will be offered “training”, the kind of training that rarely translates into jobs. But that will register a decrease in the official unemployment statistics, so the government will be happy… and the unemployed still in trouble. Especially since Macron didn’t hide that the government will push for a reform to decrease unemployment benefits.

The government also plans to “cap” the damages that employers are condemned by labor tribunals to pay to workers: we must reduce “the uncertainties” for these poor bosses who break the labor laws, you see. As for the labor laws, the government is working hard to give bosses the means to go around them, through “company contracts”.

No “cap” for Air France and Goodyear employees

Valls had demanded “the utmost severity” after the Air France workers demonstration against the 2,900 layoffs announced by their management and the episode of the ripped off shirts. And four employees have already been laid off, even though Valls’ intention to make examples was slowed by the labor inspectorate that opposed the layoff of another employee who is a personnel representative.

And to make another example, a few Goodyear workers have been condemned. Nine-month jail terms for nine employees who had held for 30 hours two managers of the company that threw the 1,170 employees of its Amiens factory into unemployment. Given that the managers and the company removed themselves from the trial, the verdict is entirely due to the resolve of the prosecutor, who represented the State at the trial. How not to see the will of the government to intimidate all protestors? These attacks against workers go much further than Sarkozy would have. During the 2009 crisis, the former President never dared imprison the workers involved in the many sequestrations of dirty bosses.

On February 1st the Ford Blanquefort employees are in turn called on to a Paris police station following their demonstration at the 2015 Paris Auto Show. This is yet another intimidation maneuver against the employees of the country. Until the dirty attack that will be the last drop, which will bring people into the streets. Meantime, Hollande loses more and more credibility.

Using the state of emergency as a weapon, more effective against our freedom than against terrorism, the government wants to make durable a climate that would prevent people from mobilizing. But this strategy is already disputed: many unions, organizations and political parties are planning demonstrations against the state of emergency, on January 30. We must also attend the demonstration in support of our Goodyear comrades, on February 4.

We, employees, who keep facing job cuts, layoffs, unemployment, low wages and repression, should not let this government, which helps break social protections, have the last word.