David Van Deusen, co-founder of the Green Mountain Anarchist Collective and former member of NEFAC & ARA has announced that he is running for President of the 10,000 member Vermont AFL-CIO as part of a new progressive slate (Vermont AFL-CIO United!). The union election takes place in September. Van Deusen, as an AFL-CIO District Vice President, recently led the Green Mountain Central Labor Council into supporting the YPG/YPJ and the struggle in Rojava (as part of that support the VT AFL-CIO supported returning American fighters who served with the YPG). Two months ago he (working with allied unions and community organizations) organized a 500 strong picket line in Burlington, VT, against visiting union-buster Scott Walker. Below is his campaign announcement and his slate’s ten point program.
Reading this collection of essays, it’s clear David Van Deusen has lived an interesting life. To start, Van Deusen takes us on an exciting history of his involvement in The Green Mountain Anarchist Collective. He writes about efforts against racist group The Minutemen, daily struggles of organization and introduces the question of violence and non-violence used as a tactic and strategy, a topic he goes in to in more detail later in the book. Reading the first chapter on the history of Van Deusen and the collective he was part of does intrigue the reader to get stuck in to the book. It intrigues as you build a mental image of the man in your head and after the opening stories, you want to know what else he has been part of. Although the title may suggest more enjoyment for people familiar with the northeast of the USA, the book still has lots to offer those who are not. The second set of essays focuses on Theory, including two great reads The Rise of Capitalism and Authoritarian Communism as An Incomplete Resistance. These two essays are written with pace and vigor sometimes lacking in other parts of the book. Some of the essays are so crammed with theories and ideas, I needed a rest between them to let it sink in. A nice touch here: Van Deusen intersperses the theories with song lyrics from the Who, the Clash, Public Enemy and many others; this helps the reader to digest the previous essay and get ready for the next.