Yes Eugene V Debs is still very relevant today. Much more relevant than Senator Sellout Sanders who while he occasionally shows up at a strike was too afraid to risk his own job or freedom over the 2016, New Democrat Party Rigged and Stolen Presidential Primary. Growing up I saw ordinary men proud of their scars for the line beatings they endured when on strike or the harassment by the Sheriff’s Office over phony traffic stops, being roughed up by deputies and spending a day or two in the country jail on trumped up charges that were usually dropped before the date of appearance to answer them. That is the commitment to the greater good of We, The Rabble that I was taught to admire and still do. Anybody who cannot stand up to power despite the temporary pain that they will endure for the greater gain in my book is a parasite feeding off of the system. My father was a union president in Texas during the 1950s and 60s before a heart attack gave the company the perfect excuse to “medically retire” him and get his opposition to their labor shenanigans silenced. Between the County Sheriff and the Texas Rangers it was tough to be a union member on strike but not as tough as it frequently has been throughout the struggle of workers to claim our fair share in this Parisistic Capitalist system of economic governance we are ALL oppressed by.
The first thing labor has to do is cut all ties with the New Democrat Party and especially stop providing votes and money for them at the federal level. The damaging anti-labor laws and decisions are already in place and the New Democrat Party provided immeasurable help to make it so. There are lots of things that can be done to help labor at the state level to pressure even multinational, exploitive corporations to change their relationships with their employees. The New Democrat and The Republican Parties as conjoined wings of the Wall Street Owned One Party System (WOOPS) are not going to lift a finger to enhance the positions of working people - not one iota!
We also must remember that Eugene Debs ran his last presidential campaign from a federal prison cell for violating the Espionage Act. An Act that was written to put Debs and a few other notable individuals in jail for criticizing the US entering into World War I - a war that the Piggy Princes Of American Capitalism wanted solely to generate profits for the Military Industrial Complex. And yes the MIC existed then and has existed since the Civil War. The ironic part of holding this conference at an institute named after the junior New Democrat Senator from Vermont is that it was Democratic President Woodrow Wilson who jailed Debs on behalf of the Wall Street Owned MIC!
I was a small business owner for most of my adult working life. I am a Anti-Capitalist because it is the modern, socially acceptable incarnation of Monarchial Capitalism or rule by a strongman and/or Repressive Central Authority. I am not a Socialist because, like capitalism they function around a planned economy and no planned economy allows the prosperity and economic freedom We, The Rabble are entitled to. I do support the vast majority of their other economic and social principles I advocate well regulated Barter And Trade, the natural economy of Peoplekind, as the best system to provide for all of our needs and wants that we cannot individually provide through our own labor.
They say that those who are ignorant of history are condemned to repeat it! And this conference is a quintessential example of that little gem of mind expansion!