“Enclosed is the biweekly ‘incentive pay’ I received from the steel bosses for $63.36,” wrote Nadine Carr from Chicago. “I’m glad to send this blood money in to advance the work of the communist movement.” To speed up production, a computer system at the mill where she works tracks how fast each coil is processed, reporting if the pace is “below par,” or if the mill stops for more than two minutes. “We’ve had quite a bit of discussion on my crew about how this is designed to push us to speed up and to encourage competition between crews,” she wrote. “It’s a bribe.”
Also from Chicago, Don Hammond sent in a $25 Christmas bonus given out by bosses at a meatpacking plant “that was one of the most dangerous jobs I have worked,” he wrote. Communists use the term “blood money” to describe production, attendance, safety and other bonuses the bosses “give” in an effort to bribe workers from resisting speedup, low pay and unsafe working conditions. Socialist Workers Party members and supporters give this money to the SWP’s Capital Fund, to strengthen the party’s long-term work.
Laura Garza in Los Angeles sent in $914.53, back pay from the rail bosses after they finally signed a new contract with the union. “Back pay was one of the things the carriers used to sell the contract,” wrote Garza. “The pact hikes workers’ health care costs, doubling maximum out-of-pocket expenses.”
If you’d like to turn your bosses’ attempted bribes into something that helps advance the working-class movement, contact the SWP in your area listed on page 8.