The Knights of Labor was a rather inclusive group. It sought to unite together all "producers." Producers included anyone that constructed a physical product in the course of their workday. The Knights of Labor welcomed factory workers and business owners into its ranks. The group rejected "nonproducers"—people who did not engage in physical labor, such as bankers, lawyers, and academics. The Knights of Labor sought to create a united front of producers versus the nonproducers. The organization even allowed women and African Americans to join its ranks. Together, the producers sought an eight-hour workday, an end to child labor, better wages, and improved working conditions in general. Under (Terence) Powderly's leadership, the organization also sought to instill morality in its members, including providing support for the temperance movement.(emphases my own)
Friday, September 05, 2014
I worked in the fast food industry from September 1969 - November 1969. Gene Mahoney hired me along with Pat Murphy and Timmy Atkins, as well as about six young ladies to work at Chicken Unlimited on north east corner of 79th & Wood Street for $1.30 per hour.
Gene Mahoney had a gold mine due to his foresight and a loan from Standard State Bank at 79th & Ashland. The corner of 79th & Wood was a people magnet. Around the corner on Wood was a saloon ( very busy)and across the street the 18th Ward Republican Headquarters ( rarely visited) on the south east side of the corner was Kiley and Kalina's Drug Store two more busy saloons, a fore-runner to 7/11 Hites' - which sold candy and pop to hundreds of Little Flower Grammar School & High School students and the bread and cheese that Dads forgot while visiting the three saloons - ' Here's a buck, run up to Hites' and get a loaf of that Butternut and a hunk a Baloney, or your Old Lady will crucify me.'
Across the street was Fields one of many Greek restaurants that served Mass go-ers, mourners from Sheehys/Walter Quinlan & Sons, or high school teachers and coaches from Little Flower High School on break. Fields, with manager/cook/ owners named Chris, Jim and Gust, served consistently wonderful food and coffee that was better than any brewed by a Barista extant.
Gene Mahoney niche-marketed , shift changers, teen-agers with pocket change, guys who needed nourishment to go along with the Great Taste of Drewrys/Hamms/Meister Brau and Schlitz, and families requiring a quick meal of fried chicken , hamburgers, fries, shrimp and creamy cole slaw with very generous helping of buns and honey. Gene Mahoney was an electrician by trade and managed a hardware store, as well as operated this Chicken Unlimited station. He later opened two more.
Gene Mahoney tasked me, Pat Murphy and Tim Atkins with deep frying chicken, shrimp and spuds and also grilling the beef patties for low-end hamburgers and the signature Wham-Burger ( so-named for its size and secret Wham Sauce) according to franchise standards. I was an adept with a spatula, but miserable a deep-fryer failure. Chicken, shrimp and spuds were to be cooked to a golden brown Mine came out of the bubbling oils with all of the texture and appearance of a Rawlings, a Spaulding, or a Wilson . . . football.
I took home eight pay checks. On Halloween, Gene Mahoney informed me that I should seek employment where I needed to deep-fry "nothing." I went to work at Gee Lumber two miles west on 79th Street - it was longer walk to work, but found my skills and attention level to detail work more suited to cutting 2X4s, mixing cement or stacking lumber. I continued to take my high school lunches at Chicken Unlimited on Wood Street all through my senior year and was delighted to see that my replacement, Kevin Glynn, was superb fryer of foods. I was paid $ 1.30 at Chicken Unlimited and at Gee Lumber and banked that cash at Standard State Bank for my looming tuition at Loyola University. I did not aspire to be a chicken fryer, nor a cutter of lumber.
Would I have been happier making $ 15 an hour soaking a hamburger with Wham sauce? I rather doubt that, unless my aspirations matched the prevailing minimum wage.
1954 - Full Universal Health Care for all Local 25 Members and their Families - not now. SEIU spend dues on the likes of Gov.Pat Quinn, Sen. Dick Durbin and Marxist 501(c) 3s and entertaining the Chicago media..
SEIU, is the son of Local 25 Chicago Office, Theatre, and Amusement Building Janitors' Union. In 1969, that Local was run by old timey union tough guys, like its President Tom Burke, who had their heads busted by management goons hired by the Building Managers Association of Chicago while walking picket lines. I worked out of this local during my summer vacations between my junior and senior year. I made $ 1.85 ($.55) more than the Chicken Unlimited and Gee Lumber scale. Nickels added up back then. When my summer work ended in August 1969, I settled for the lower wage in order maintain a less than full-time weekly set of hours. I was still in high school. Gene Mahoney, and Mr. Jim Gee, Jr. helped me pay the $80 in tuition at Little Flower High School and save for the $1,400 annual tuition at Loyola. SEIU was born when Local 25 was seized and turned over to the Toronto Local run by Marxists in 1973 and they controlled the union Cook County Democrats, the Chicago news media and murdered the aspirations of its membership - in my opinion.
The Reds ran Local 25 and adopted the color purple under the now invisible direction of Marxist Andy Stern.
Today, labor remains very confused.Labor History has been forgotten, or erased by SEIU. Skilled and Industrial trades have cooperated with SEIU for decades and allowed the "producers" to go-along to get along.
A producer was laborer who had something to show at the end of his labors - a carpenter, a butcher, dress-maker, a canner, a boilermaker, a steam-fitter, a pipe-fitter could join the Knights of Labor - the people who actually won the eight hour day and forty hour week. A priest, a parson, a clerk, or an academic could not be a member of the working class.
Terence Powderly and the Knights of Labor, like Mother Jones and Booker T. Washington have all but disappeared from the labor conscious vocabulary.
All labor is noble; by that I mean any job accepted by woman or man and carried out with care and conviction. Some Labor remains noble; by that I mean, organizations of working men and women who bargain in good faith with wage providers. SEIU, in my considered opinion, is and has been dangerous.
The Minimum Wage Dodge is no more than another Cadillac Commie gimmick to destroy the American Middle Class and the American Standard of living. Leadership of SEIU comes out academia and not the work force. Schools of Social Work produce Andy Stern, Anna Burger, or discredited scams like ACORN which gave Illinois Keith Kelleher. I doubt any SEIU Clipboard, or Bullhorn Artiste ever swung a mop, stripped a floor, or cleaned brass.
The skilled and industrial trades are led by producers - workers actually know how to pack a pump, thread pipe, and the difference between red, green, white and black wires.
Skilled trades people aspired to wages they earned. SEIU enslaves its membership to a wage it manages squeeze out of taxpayers via legislation.