6 May 2010
Last week, in the run up to May Day, observed as a national holiday in 80 countries, the American labour movement organized a march on Wall Street -- after many years. The march was aimed at highlighting the plight of 11 million Americans who have lost their jobs as a result of the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent economic recession caused by the Wall Street instigated sub-prime mortgage market crash.
Richard Trumka, president of America’s labour federation, AFL-CIO, contends Wall Street can look forward to more protest marches against it. “They destroyed 11 million jobs and they still don’t get it. They’re back to business as usual,” he argued.
The American labour movement is calling for the reform of Wall Street via regulations such that a repeat of the greed and chaos that caused the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent global recession is avoided in future.
The labour movement has three specific demands:
1) It wants Wall Street to pay for “their share of the 11 million jobs destroyed.”
2) It wants Wall Street to “call off the army of lobbyists” that were sent to Washington to prevent the financial sector’s reform.
3) It wants Wall Street to “start lending to small and medium sized businesses” such that the economy can be kick started again and jobs created for the many millions of people who lost their jobs.