Go slow strike at Mondragon factory

FagorMastercook factory

Workers fight for wage increase at FagorMastercook in Poland, part of the Mondragon capital group.

A work-to-rule strike in underway in Wroclaw's FagorMastercook factory. Despite exceptionally good output, increased exports and a healthy profit, most workers are still taking home a meager 350 euros a month, much lower than wages in other nearby factories and certainly lower than for similar work in other European countries. The strike should last at least til the end of the week.

While the Mondragon corporation enjoys an undeserved reputation as being some sort of cooperative which is fair to workers, its exploitative practices in low-cost labour countries lay all that mythology bare. In addition, FagorMastercook has a history of repressing organized labour.

More here: http://www.pracownik.net.pl/go_slow_strike_against_mondragon_capitalists_at_fagormastercook

http://zsp.net.pl/fagormastercook_workcamp

Comments

Chilli Sauce
Jan 25 2011 18:00

This is the Mondragon the UAW recently endorsed... Great.

armillaria
Jan 27 2011 10:53

1. Go, striking Wroclaw workers.

2. Trying to understand what actual structures let this happen.
At the link, there is this link:
http://zsp.net.pl/fagormastercook_workcamp
to a story about labor struggles from a few years ago. From that article:

"Mondragón Cooperative Corporation (MCC) is a typical capitalist employer operating plants in low-wage countries like Poland, Egypt, Morocco, Mexico, Thailand and China. Employees in these countries are not co-op members. (Some employees in other countries, even in Spain are also non-members; as many as 1/3 of Mondragon workers are not cooperative members. Any cooperative can also apply to MCC to employ up to 40% non-cooperative workers.)"

Yeah, even cooperatively-run businesses and such have to compete in the market economy, which limits how differently they can operate from capitalist-owned ones. But individual "reclaimed factories" can at least be run in a democratic fashion, with all workers having an equal say in decision making and not having their money be siphoned away by ruling-class parasites.

Here, on the other hand, it looks like there are policies in place that let a "cooperative" group of people share power as a ruling class and hire other people on as an underclass. Curious as to how that happened...

Spikymike
Jan 27 2011 12:30

Not directly related to this kind of workplace co-op - but look how the, in many ways, far more radical and inspiring Kibutz in Israel also managed, over a period of time, to end up exploiting Palestinian and other foreign labour whilst also acting as the frontline arm of the mini-imperialism of the Israeli state - and this applied both to right wing religious run kibutz as well as left wing socialist kibutz, so a supposedly better ideology is no guarantee of a better outward result. The long term result was also to undermine much of the more positive internal structures of even the best kibutz.

Chilli Sauce
Jan 28 2011 20:08

Very much worth a read armillaria: http://libcom.org/library/co-operatives-all-together

Autonomía Pulga
Jun 4 2013 20:44

Even in Spain many Mondragon workers are not cooperativists (such as Caprabo or Eroski retail workers) while others had been swindled by the Corporation (selling them preferred stocks through their saving bank Caja Laboral). Anarcho-sindicalist confederation CGT is having nowadays a huge conflict with Caprabo.

The birth of the Mondragon Group is to be understood as a part of the "social agenda" of the Catholic Church in the early years of Franco's dictatiorship, and soon it was took as a standard for franquist autarkic ideology.

During late times, leftist basque independentism has also taken it as an exaple for their way to self-managed socialism. But by the way we should not forget, with Chomsky, that although beeing worker-owned Mondragon factories and firms have never been worker-managed.

http://www.rojoynegro.info/evento/acci%C3%B3n-sindical/apoyo-mutuo-caprabo?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
http://www.rojoynegro.info/articulo/accion-sindical/boicot-caprabo-eroski-readmision-despedidxs?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter