The article you just read was brought to you by a few thousand dedicated readers. Will you join them?

Thanks for coming by The Tyee and reading one of many original articles we’ll post today. Our team works hard to publish in-depth stories on topics that matter on a daily basis. Our motto is: No junk. Just good journalism.

Just as we care about the quality of our reporting, we care about making our stories accessible to all who want to read them and provide a pleasant reading experience. No intrusive ads to distract you. No paywall locking you out of an article you want to read. No clickbait to trick you into reading a sensational article.

There’s a reason why our site is unique and why we don’t have to rely on those tactics — our Tyee Builders program. Tyee Builders are readers who chip in a bit of money each month (or one-time) to our editorial budget. This amazing program allows us to pay our writers fairly, keep our focus on quality over quantity of articles, and provide a pleasant reading experience for those who visit our site.

In the past year, we’ve been able to double our staff team and boost our reporting. We invest all of the revenue we receive into producing more and better journalism. We want to keep growing, but we need your support to do it.

Fewer than 1 in 100 of our average monthly readers are signed up to Tyee Builders. If we reach 1% of our readers signing up to be Tyee Builders, we could continue to grow and do even more.

If you appreciate what The Tyee publishes and want to help us do more, please sign up to be a Tyee Builder today. You pick the amount, and you can cancel any time.

Support our growing independent newsroom and join Tyee Builders today.
Before you click away, we have something to ask you…

Do you value independent journalism that focuses on the issues that matter? Do you think Canada needs more in-depth, fact-based reporting? So do we. If you’d like to be part of the solution, we’d love it if you joined us in working on it.

The Tyee is an independent, paywall-free, reader-funded publication. While many other newsrooms are getting smaller or shutting down altogether, we’re bucking the trend and growing, while still keeping our articles free and open for everyone to read.

The reason why we’re able to grow and do more, and focus on quality reporting, is because our readers support us in doing that. Over 5,000 Tyee readers chip in to fund our newsroom on a monthly basis, and that supports our rockstar team of dedicated journalists.

Join a community of people who are helping to build a better journalism ecosystem. You pick the amount you’d like to contribute on a monthly basis, and you can cancel any time.

Help us make Canadian media better by joining Tyee Builders today.
We value: Our readers.
Our independence. Our region.
The power of real journalism.
We're reader supported.
Get our newsletter free.
Help pay for our reporting.
Life

Yelling Back at the Radio

One working guy's rant not likely to get through on the call-in shows.

By Ernesto (Ernie) Raj Peshkov-Chow 13 Jan 2011 | TheTyee.ca

This is the last of a series of excerpts from the book Great Multicultural North -- A Canadian Primer for Hosers, Immigrants and Socialists. Find the others here.]

Recently released by Fernwood Publishing, the book is available at www.turning.ca or as an eBook on Amazon. Peshkov-Chow is a left-wing Don Cherry -- a hockey-loving, mongrel-Canadian, working-class activist in the tradition of Ginger Goodwin or Joe Hill -- who sometimes takes over the mind and body of Gary Engler.

image atom
Ernie's team mascot.

You know who makes me mad? Right-wingers who claim to be the worker's friend.

You know who really, really makes me mad? Workers who buy into the bullshit that the right-wingers are selling.

I mean smarten up, eh! Think. Read a little history. Radio talk show hosts, newspaper columnists, TV celebrity idiots, preachers and politicians who want to weaken or destroy unions, get rid of minimum wages, cut public services, chop pensions, encourage private schools, get rid of corporate regulation, say government-paid healthcare is bad, start wars and promote hatred based on skin colour or religion are not on our side. They want to divide us. They are working for the rich folks who prefer a world based on the principle of one dollar, one vote rather than one person, one vote. They are our enemies, not our friends.

They may claim to be on our team, maybe stand behind our bench or even put on our jersey, but as soon as we play the game the way they tell us, the puck ends up in our net. It's like the Philadelphia Flyers hiring a general manager who is really working for the Pittsburgh Penguins.

In fact, following the advice of right-wingers pretending to be our friends has led to decades of losing seasons for the working class. The rich have gotten richer, the poor poorer, our kids have been sent off to war, our jobs moved to places where fellow workers are screwed even worse than we are and yet so many of us continue to believe these liars and cheats that there's little hope for change anytime soon.

Why? Are we just plain stupid? Or are they so clever?

Whose team?

I think the main reason the working class gets screwed over and over is because of our loyalty. We continue on the way we have because too many of us have been brainwashed into believing that's the way our team plays the game. Too many of us believe we play for the Capitalist Devils and that makes us capitalists. Hurrah for my team!

Well, let me be the one who breaks the news to you. Workers and capitalists have different interests. Always have and always will. We are a cost to them. The more we get, the less they get; that's how they look at it. Capitalists never gave workers anything good. We had to fight for weekends, better pay, the eight-hour day, pensions, maternity leave and every other benefit any of us get. And the only time capitalists ever gave up any of this stuff without a whopping big battle was when they were scared that the alternative was revolution. Scared that we'd get rid of them, scared that workers would run the economy democratically by ourselves. Only then were some capitalists willing to reform the system a little in our favour.

And over the last few decades as fewer and fewer workers have talked about getting rid of capitalism, what's happened? The rich have gotten greedier and greedier. They've started taking back many of the reforms and laws that made life better for us. They've chopped wages, pensions and other benefits. Once they convinced most of us that there is no alternative to capitalism, all of a sudden the system can no longer afford to give us what it once promised.

And if we continue to play the game by their rules, we will continue to be shut out. Our only hope is to rethink the game.

The capitalists may act as if they own the team we play for -- the system may say they do -- but we are the players and without us the game does not exist. We have the power, if we choose to use it, to change the rules and make the game fair for all.  [Tyee]

Read more: Politics

Share this article

The Tyee is supported by readers like you

Join us and grow independent media in Canada

Facts matter. Get The Tyee's in-depth journalism delivered to your inbox for free

LATEST STORIES

The Barometer

Tyee Poll: Are You Preparing for the Next Climate Disaster?

Take this week's poll