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Susan Green

Of Special Interest to Women

(21 June 1943)

From Labor Action, Vol. 7 No. 25, 21 June 1943, p. 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

If you have never known it before, you now know that cottage cheese is a good pinch-hitter for other proteins. Especially in hot weather is it a handy item to have around for salads and so on.

Last summer you could get a pound container of cottage cheese for eleven or twelve cents – and, according to the label, it was mixed with cream.

Now you pay seventeen or eighteen cents for a pound container – and it is NOT mixed with cream.

For a fifty per cent increase in price you, do not even get the same quality of merchandise – which is true not only of cottage cheese but of almost everything else you buy.

However, the Borden Company at least does not let you down completely. On its container where it used to say that cream had been added, it now kindly tells you to use cottage cheese as a meat substitute. Big-heartedly the company gives you the same amount of printing, even though it does not give you any cream in the cheese costing fifty per cent more.


Borden’s and other dairy product monopolists are indeed making hay while the sun shines – if you can mention the sun in connection with this global catastrophe.

By cutting down the milk deliveries to every other day, the companies are saving plenty of money on labor – while workers will be jobless.

The milk drivers’ union states that most of the house-to-house deliveries are made by horse and wagon. The claim that gas and rubber must be saved is therefore only another instance of bosses using the war to line their pockets with blood-stained gold.

Every time workers balk at being the goats, the bosses and their controlled molders of public opinion have a stereotyped answer ready: The workers are holding up the war effort!


A factory near Westport, Conn. – not named in the press, presumably for military reasons – is farming out homework to women in the neighborhood on a piece basis. The plant is making cable grips for the Signal Corps.

The head of the factory – who happens to be a woman – is very proud of this solution of the manpower “shortage” we are hearing so much about – while thousands of union workers in various industries are constantly finding themselves without work, and competent Negroes can’t get work.

The ingenious head of this factory also poses as a benefactor of the poor, stating for the press: “I’ve discovered real hardships the average Westport resident wouldn’t suspect; poverty and pride, an urgent need for money in the home,” etc., etc.

The self-created halo must be pulled from the self-righteous head of this she-boss.

Piecework at home is definitely a method for undermining union standards. Unions cannot organize home workers. Consequently home workers are prey for the bosses – a source of cheap labor. This Westport she-boss knows from where come sable coats.


This column hasn’t paid its respects to Mrs. Roosevelt for quite some time. Amends are hereby made with the following long quotation from a speech by the First Lady about the miners’ strike:

“Take the company stores, for instance. They allow the miners to run up bills and keep them ‘in hock’ forever. And they charge higher prices for their goods than neighboring stores.

“If you go down into the mining areas you will find that mining is an extremely dangerous occupation, and I am not satisfied that always efforts are being made to make it less dangerous. In the matter of wages, the miners are working full time now, of course, but for years many miners never worked more than two and three days a week.

“That, undoubtedly, was hard on the mine owners, too – [poor things] – but nevertheless these miners ended the week often with pay envelopes containing as little as three cents. I have seen pay envelopes containing three cents.”

Based on her first-hand information of the miners’ hardships, Mrs. Roosevelt is of the opinion that the miners are entitled to “some concessions” in the light of what they and their families “have lived through for the past ten years.”

You, reader, being a bit logical in your thinking, may draw the conclusion from the above that Mrs. Roosevelt was at least not opposed to the miners’ strike. Banish the thought. She assured her listeners – in this case some two hundred Chinese students in this country – THAT SHE HAS NO SYMPATHY FOR THE MINERS’ STRIKE.

She failed to indicate in what other way the miners can get “some concessions” – nor did she account for the fact that she herself did not make speeches about the miners’ hardship BEFORE THEY WENT ON STRIKE.


Delayed reports from France via London tell of the heroic acts of French women against the Nazis. With all their might they have been opposing the deportation of their sons, husbands and fathers for slave labor in Germany.

Mass demonstrations have culminated in mothers, daughters and wives laying their bodies across the tracks in front of locomotives to prevent the. movement of trains carrying their men to slavery. This and other actions have kept between fifty and eighty per cent of the French workers conscripted for German factories from going. Vichy supposedly admits as much.

Is it reasonable to suppose that these militant, fighting women – undefeated in a defeated country – will be content with the post-war replacement of Hitlerism by the old-time rule of French capitalism represented by Giraud, de Gaulle et al.?

Many a bitter struggle have French working men and women fought against the fascist-infested French capitalist class before the war, In 1936, they were on the verge of making a workers’ revolution – the only salvation for the working; people of the world.


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