As much as modern American labor unions would like to obscure their origins to imply they were part of the struggle for American independence, the facts are contrary to their rhetoric. Modern organized labor grew out of communist theory developed in the 1840s, which itself evolved from the bloody French Revolution of 1789.
The American Federation of Labor – Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) implies on their website that their history began in Charleston, SC in the 1700s when “apprentice laborers” went on strike for better pay. Their Labor History timeline on the same site even has a starting date of 1607 when “English planters found Jamestown colony and complain about the lack of laborers.”
The AFL-CIO’s insinuation is a fabrication in an attempt to establish legitimacy and obscure their radical revolutionary roots. Organized labor strife prior to America’s independence is connected to modern labor movements only by the fact that laborers stood up against business oppression of the work force. Yet they differ in one extremely important and fundamental way, pre-revolution organized labor was predominately non-violent. The history of modern organized labor, on the other hand, is a history of ideologically motivated, strategically planned violent labor protests in America that traces its history back to the French Revolution.
It was at the beginning of the French Revolution that Sylvain Marechal (1750-1803) a French essayist, poet, philosopher, and political theorist, whose ideas were the precursor of utopian socialism and communism, “made the first suggestion of unified proletarian protest against the economic and political organization of modern society.” His was only one of the first shots fired in a maelstrom of ideas that, among other things, eventually led to the modern labor movement.
Out of the French Revolution came radical revolutionary theories that spread across Europe like wild fire. The motivation behind these theories was the overthrow of the European Christian world order. Enlightenment philosophers who upheld natural science, instead of Scripture, as the source of truth contended that man, of his own reason, can discern truth and establish justice without the Bible. In other words, they exchanged the immutable laws of God, as found in the Holy Bible, for the mutable whims of man thinly veiled as scientific fact.
This philosophy unleashed a conflagration of actions that were not based on science, reason or rational human thought, but only on unrestrained human passion. As a result of these secular beliefs, much injustice was done and much blood was shed. Unlike the misnamed American Revolution which upheld the Christian world order and maintained a high level of civility in the midst of armed conflict, the French Revolution was a very sordid and bloody affair.
The French Revolution entailed mass public executions, warrantless confiscation and redistribution of property, and the enthronement of worse tyranny than what had been overthrown. It is nearly impossible to think about the French Revolution without remembering the tragedy, suffering and death caused by both Robespierre and the celebrated Napoleon Bonaparte.
These radical revolutionary theories were perpetuated by men such as Philippe Buonarroti (1761-1837), Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon (1760-1825), Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831), Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (1809-1865), and Mikhail Alexandrovich Bakunin (1814-1876).
Philippe Buonarroti proposed a strategy to incrementally revolutionize society in an attempt to institute utopian socialism. Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon, founded the French socialist movement and campaigned to eradicate the “hand of greed” in society through education. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, a German idealist, created the theory of dialectic idealism, which contends history develops out of tension between the thesis and the antithesis to create a synthesis of the two opposites.
Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, a French politician, economist and libertine socialist, famously asserted that property is theft. Mikhail Alexandrovich Bakunin, a Russian revolutionary anarchist and a principle founder of the social anarchist tradition argued for the replacement of the state by federated labor unions. The theories of each of these men impacted and inspired other like minded individuals who kept the fires of revolutionary thought burning throughout the nineteenth century and well into the twentieth.
From this cacophony of revolutionary ideas, Karl Marx (1818-1883) gained the inspiration to develop his theory of class warfare, in which both he and his protégé Engels endorsed unprovoked violence in pursuit of their goals. Class warfare was fundamental to his communist system of government and has been lionized in his 1848 Communist Manifesto slogan, “Workers of the world unite!” It was from this clarion call that modern labor organizations started to take shape.
Within twenty years of his clarion call, western society saw the advent of revolutionary “syndicalism.” “Syndicalism is a form or development of trade unionism, originating in France that aims at the possession of the means of production and distribution, and ultimately at the control of society, by federated bodies of industrial workers that seek to realize its purposes through general strikes, terrorism, sabotage, etc. It is also an economic system in which workers own and manage industry.”
The definition of syndicalism perfectly describes both the historical actions and current tactics and goals of modern labor unions. For example, according to a 1969 study, “The United States has experienced more frequent and bloody labor violence than any other industrial nation.”
To name just a few incidents, in the 1870s in eastern Pennsylvania, the Molly Maguires, a Catholic Irish immigrant organization, was accused of killing eleven coal mine bosses who were involved with labor disputes. In the 1886 Chicago Haymarket affair, an unknown person threw a dynamite bomb into a crowd that resulted in the deaths of seven police officers. In the 1892 Pittsburgh Homestead steel strike, striking laborers used armed resistance to prevent Pinkerton Detective Agency men from crossing their picket line.
More recently on February 18, 2014, Federal prosecutors arrested ten members of Ironworkers Local Union 401 on charges of targeting construction sites that hire non-union workers. According to Newsworks, they were indicted for “allegedly participating in a conspiracy to commit criminal acts of extortion, arson, destruction of property, and assault, in order to force construction contractors to hire union ironworkers.” This is evidence Unions still employ their syndicalistic tactics even today.
Further evidence of syndicalism in modern labor unions is the manner in which the AFL-CIO is organized. They are a conglomeration of 57 different unions, which is itself testimony of a federated body of industrial workers straight from the syndicalism definition. “Syndicalism is a form or development of trade unionism…by federated bodies of industrial workers.”
One last and poignant example of syndicalism in modern labor unions is when organized labor used their political influence to have the Obama administration canvas for the national government to “bail out” General Motors, then to give majority control of the company to the United Auto Workers at American taxpayer expense. This action was the fruition of organized labor’s goal for workers to own and manage industry, which again fits the definition of revolutionary syndicalism.
It is important to understand radical revolutionary ideas were not grown in America, but imported via immigration from Europe after 1848. In 1848, Europe saw the most widespread wave of revolution that it had ever experienced. It included, among other countries, the countries of France, Germany, Belgium, Poland, Denmark, Switzerland, and Ireland. Reactionary forces within all the affected countries were able to suppress these uprisings, but the suppression spurred a massive wave of immigration of radical revolutionary minded people to the United States. 
“In the early period these ideas came mainly from revolutionary nationalists of Catholic origin, who often became social revolutionaries in predominately Protestant America.” Radical social revolutionaries believe in taking complete and exclusive control of the state, frequently through the use of violent or illicit means. These immigrants supported and fought for the North in the Civil War, served in Lincoln’s cabinet, and after the war fanned the flames of labor unrest in America. Their efforts gave rise to organizations like the AFL, CIO, United Auto Workers (UAW) and International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) to name just a few.
Syndicalistic labor unions, masquerading as organizations geared toward helping the common man, are a method of instituting socialism and communism in America, which was founded on principles that are antithetical to the radical revolutionary European cause. Socialism, as defined by Marx, is what follows capitalism in the transition of a society to communism, so socialism is nothing more than the early stages of communism imposed upon society.
Both socialist and communist ideas are not only un-American they are anti-American. One of the main problems with modern organized labor is that their ideas, methods and goals are the same or very similar to the ones used by Vladimir Lenin (1870-1924) in the 1917 Russian Revolution. Not only was its culmination in Russia unbeneficial to nearly anyone involved, but this type of union ideology, which violates personal property rights, goes against everything the founding culture fought to establish in America.
There is nothing wrong with the pre-revolution idea of laborers banding together to preserve the equitable treatment of workers, especially if they establish a promotion system based on merit and provide value in the market place commiserate to the extra cost they impose upon production.
While employment is a highly desired outcome of business by society, businesses do not exist to provide people jobs. If businesses do not provide value in the market place at a price at or below their competitors, then the business will experience financial hardship and mostly likely go bankrupt. This is why unions must provide value to the customer in return for the higher cost of their labor if the business for which they work is going to remain competitive in the market place and stay in business in the long run.
It is a sad testament that big business’ treatment of their workers during the age of the robber barons inspired workers to react in such an organized violent manner. For example, in some cases robber barons paid their employees bare subsistence wages, made them work 12 hour days at least six days a week in extremely hazardous conditions, and paid them in company script redeemable only at the company store where the monopolistic prices were set by the company.
This treatment of workers, of course, does not excuse or exonerate organized labor’s violent behavior and labor’s reaction to big business does legitimize the behavior of big business towards them. They were both wrong and they should have treated each other as they would want to be treated if the roles were reversed.
Modern labor unions, however, have surpassed their usefulness in combating egregious businesses and have become egregious themselves, because businesses are now regulated on work place conditions and equitable treatment of employees while syndicalized unions continue to force larger and larger concessions from businesses without providing value to customers in return.
Syndicalized unions are largely responsible for the decline of the steel industry in the United States, which was heavily unionized and in which the unions drove up labor costs by not only obtaining higher wages for their members but also paid vacations that were as much as three months per year. The collapse of the American steel industry caused massive unemployment which can be seen by the number of people who left Pittsburgh, PA in the 60s and 70s. Even to this day a disproportionately large number of Steeler fans seem to be ubiquitous in nearly every American city as a result of that collapse.
Syndicalized unions are also culpable for the demise of many industries in the mid-west now known as the “rust belt,” the relative failure of American owned car companies, and high taxation in States with overreaching public sector union contracts.
Modern labor unions have priced their labor out of the market such that they have forced American companies to either go out of business, flee to right-to-work States or to foreign markets, or spend seemingly astronomical sums on automation instead of hiring one American unionized laborer.
For example, the liquidation of the Hostess Company in November 2012 is a case in point of unions driving an American company out of business. While negotiating a new union contract, the Hostess Company informed the union that they could not remain solvent unless the union reduced its demands. The union refused and Hostess liquidated the company and eventually sold the rights to their products to investors who re-established the company in a right-to-work State.
Only the very cold of heart could not empathize with a worker’s desire for job and wage security, yet every member of a labor union should objectively ask if they are inadvertently imposing socialist and communist ideas, methods and goals upon American society by their membership.
Additionally, everyone who purchases products or services made or provided by unionized labor should understand they are contributing to the campaign coffers of a political party that promotes the socialist and communist agenda. Labor unions use the dues collected by their members to fund political candidates and parties that further union interests. Organized labor is one of the Democratic Party’s top financial donors and the Democratic Party promotes and implements socialist and Communist Party polices in America.
Evidence of this is found in comparing the Democratic Party Platform with the Ten Planks of Communism from Marx’s Communist Manifesto. The similarities are uncanny and in many cases nearly verbatim like the Democratic Party position on education and a graduated income tax.
Further evidence is in the words of former Marxist David Horowitz who stated, “The communist party is the Democratic Party,” at a Heritage Foundation forum. Horowitz used hyperbole to make his point, but based on the policies and ideology of the Democratic Party alone it is the Communist Party in everything but name.
Finally, in an article written in the Communist Party United States of America’s online newspaper, People’s World, Sam Webb stated, “Millions who have to be at the core of this [Communist] party still operate under the umbrella of the Democratic Party, albeit increasingly in an independent fashion.” Webb’s article was focused on calming the unrest among American Communists who are upset that Obama is not doing everything they desire. Webb’s point was that his fellow Communists should continue supporting the Democratic Party because it is achieving their strategic objectives.
Hopefully, everyone can see from the evidence in this article that American labor unions, as they are currently organized, are communist in their structure, goals and tactics. Instead of, “Workers of the world unite!” the organized labor slogan should be “Workers of the world beware!” because labor unions will promise to take care of their workers, but their policies, methods and goals will achieve the exact opposite just like what happened to Detroit, Michigan after over 50 years of Democratic Party control. The methods of modern labor unions may provide higher wages and benefits to their workers in the short run, but they eventually lead to job loss and high unemployment as businesses liquidate or flee to foreign countries. None of this is good for anyone in America.
 James B. Billington, Fire in the Minds of Men, p 421.
 Dictionary.com, March 2014.
 Philip Taft and Philip Ross, “American Labor Violence: Its Causes, Character, and Outcome,” The History of Violence in America: A Report to the National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence, ed. Hugh Davis Graham and Ted Robert Gurr, 1969.
 University Missouri-Kansas City, law2.umkc.edu, March 2014.
 Mediatrackers, Sarah Leitner, 10 Philly Union Members Arrested, Accused of Violent Intimidation, Feb 18, 2014.
 Dictionary.com, March 2014.
 Billington, p 434.
 Billington, p 434.