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Trucker Strike Might Be Good For The Nation


By James Donahue


When we mentioned it yesterday, the report was that truckers across the United States are organizing via the Internet to park their rigs for a full week, beginning April 1. The story is changing and seemingly getting more and more complex by the hour.


Strangely, the threat of a national trucker strike is still being ignored by the major news networks and web sites. Drudge Report mentioned it at least twice, but then pulled the story within hours of posting it. Is there pressure from high places to keep this story out of the news?


Indeed, national publicity would help get the truckers even more organized for an event like this than they already are. We have a feeling that the only ones being fooled by this media silence is the media and perhaps the people who depend on their nightly (controlled) television news to find out what they are allowed to know.


Searching the web, however, produces various blog pages where folks are actively writing and passing information around about this issue. The strike has even taken on a name: “Truck Out.”


The date of the strike appears to have been moved back to sometime in mid-April. One story said it would be a three-day event on April 23, 24 and 25. The story said the plan was for truckers to “slow roll” that day, jamming traffic as a way of drawing attention to the fact that rising fuel and truck insurance costs are threatening to drive them into bankruptcy.


Another blog page said the plan was to shut down all trucking for one day to demonstrate the importance of trucks in America’s commerce-driven economy. Instead of hauling their loads, the writer said trucks would be surrounding “every legislative capital building in every state as well as Washington with a “bumper-to-bumper train of trucks.”


The report said the plan also involves a convoy of trucks, cars and motorcycles in every major city, protesting “the corrupt plans our government has to destroy our trucking industry and our nation.” The writer said last year’s Day Without Immigrants worker stoppage last year “was a cake-walk compared to this campaign. Imagine a day without U.S. citizen-truckers.”


A more sinister sounding report said that a Teamsters representative named Terry is talking about a possible five-day truckers strike sometime this month, but no date was given. “They will be protesting the high price of fuel nationwide and intend to bring the nation to her knees,” Terry said.


“Almost everything moves by truck a cross this country, and it won’t take very long for our merchants’ shelves and gasoline storage tanks to empty, resulting in serious shortages in food and fuel. So, be prepared,” he warned.


Indeed, the United States has become so dependent on trucks moving food, fuel, and even industrial parts on demand that a few days without trucks on the road could generate a devastating impact on everybody.


Just the knowledge that a trucker strike is emminent could spark a run on grocery stores and gasoline stations. Within hours the store shelves could be stripped and gas stations would be out of fuel to sell.


Without parts arriving on time, many factories would be closed within days. Without gas to get to work, workers would be forced to stay at home. The wheels of business would quickly grind to a stop.


We think a one-week trucker strike might be an excellend wake-up call. It might just snap Americans awake to the financial dilemma the Bush Administration has created in the seven and a half-years it has controlled the operations of our nation.


The truckers, like many other Americans, are tired of being pawns of big business. They are expected to deliver their cargos and be dedicated to the job in spite of rising costs of keeping their rigs on the road, without getting compensation.


While we believe the truckers need to be properly paid for their labor and we also believe Americans need to think of changing the way we do business. As fuel costs rise, and the cost of moving goods for long distances eat up profits, it is high time that we return to the old system of keeping business in our own neighborhoods.


If we are going to sell food, we sell what can be produced on local farms and greenhouses. If we build things, we do it with parts created in local plants, and not depend on parts being shipped from many miles away.


America also needs to think seriously about building public transportation systems, stop loving and building new cars, and start getting as many cars and trucks as possible off the road.