I honestly have all the respect in the world for folks in the IWW, but I thought it was kinda sad that, after all these years, the best that folks could say in WI was "build the general strike".
Unfortunately, like I said before, the IWW often acts like a political-economic organization that has never actually talked about what that means. There's no strategy on dual carding, and there is no strategy in operating within mass movements as a minority. The latter is something many IWW branches who do not do workplace organizing fall into anyway.
Additionally that phrase wasn't the only thing we said. We tried to give examples of job actions and give people the organizing tools and concepts to these to the best of our very limited ability.
My question to you is, what would an anarchist political organization (who were all absolutely irrelevant in WI, I'd like to point out...) do in this situation? I've thought about this quite a bit actually. And I really don't know if any could have done much more or different. In fact, due to what I see as the lack of emphasis on organizing skills in the anarchist political organizations, one might have done much worse.
I mean the IWW folks on the ground were doing tremdendous work, day and night. Word and respect. But the call for militant action, without other demands, speaks volumes to the waekness of a number of other issues.... not just with building the IWW as a distinct organ in heavily unionized situations, but to the need to attach demands for miliatnt action with some sort of concrete demands (fight the concessions, build inter-departmental solidarity between rank-and-file members, emphasize direct action against the demands by the mainstream for political action and so forth).
Well, as a militant minority, I don't see the point of making demands. That's something that's made by a wider movement, and it didn't really get to that point. That type of thing requires mass assemblies, on the job actions building up, etc. I don't believe in propping up some list of demands and building everything around that.
There's 20 groups out there, all forming their lists of demands, which are absolutely meaningless. I'm more of a 'demand nothing' type though, or at least I'm coming around to it. Far more important is the ability to disrupt the economy and business as usual. Also, there's no need for demands if it's already understood what you want.
So, what should revolutionaries have been doing in Wisconsin? (Or what should be done in the next struggle that arises similarly?) With limited numbers and a small budget, what kind of concrete steps could have been taken to extend workers' solidarity farther than it went?