By Rick Fantasia
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Additional info for Cultures of Solidarity: Consciousness, Action, and Contemporary American Workers
Another explanation, more global in scope, yet actually an elaboration of the first, was a response made by Cyrus McCormick III to the 1919 AFL convention, which had denounced company unionism as a thinly veiled union-busting tactic. McCormick emphasized the value of the works council as an "ally" of organized labor and an effective form of collective bargaining. " However, a third and conflicting rationale is revealed in a letter from the head of industrial relations at Harvester, Arthur H. Young, to Cyrus McCormick II as the plan was being developed.
These cultures of solidarity took myriad forms in response to the specific features and demands of particular struggles. 51 In sharp contrast to the president of the international union, who refused to back the strike and once it was under way publicly "red-baited" strike leaders to divide them from the rank and file, the Trotskyist strike leaders worked to garner support from the whole of the city's working class. The culture of solidarity that emerged included a range of components and practices.
23 But when the secret vote was counted, employee representatives had voted eleven to three against, with management voting unanimously for the cuts. When the plant superintendent wanted to know why the workers had voted the way they had, one representative replied: "The men come to me and say 'Mr. '" 36 Corporate Action and the Bounds of Solidarity Management responded: "Looks to me as though [top management will] be forced to close down the plant . . "24 These workers, who could not meet with their constituents, much less their fellow representatives, without management representatives present, were intimidated by the threat and called for another vote, in which they accepted the 27 percent and 32 percent wage cuts by a voting margin often to four.