Solidarity, as Middle Eastern potentates are quickly discovering, is a powerful thing. And it can take some rather unusual forms.
One night last week, Ian’s Pizza in Madison, Wisconsin, received an order from some hungry protesters at the state capitol – where the Republican government is attempting to pass a bill that, among a range of harsh budget cuts, proposes to remove the collective bargaining rights of about 300,000 workers – asking if they had any leftovers. They did, and, even though it was 3.30am, obliged.
The next day they took a couple of calls from people who had heard about their gesture and wanted to order more pizzas for the protesters, who number in the tens of thousands, and have been demonstrating for nearly a week. A trickle, to coin a cliche, became a flood: by 5pm on Saturday, when they gave away 1,057 free slices at their restaurant and delivered more than 300 pizzas to the capitol, Ian’s had to suspend normal business.
On Sunday it all began again.Calls were coming in not just from the States (38 of the 50, at last count), but from all over the globe: Ian’s Facebook page (of course) carries a picture of the chalkboard on which they are keeping track – Canada, Denmark, Finland, Australia, Germany, China, the UK, the Netherlands, Korea, Turkey – and Egypt. Take on Mubarak and win, apparently, and you can take on the world.
Oh hey! While I was typing this I got an email from the New York Working Families’ Party:
“It’s like Cairo has moved to Madison.”
That’s the quote of the week, courtesy of a Republican Congressman in Wisconsin, observing the protests in his state capital .
For the past week, tens of thousands of working people and students have taken days off to protest the new Wisconsin Tea Party governor’s vicious assault on public employees and their families.
The governor and his Right-Wing allies actually manufactured a budget crisis in order to advance their pro-corporate, anti-middle class agenda. He’s a “trickle-down” governor who pushed through irresponsible tax cuts that turned a budget surplus into a deficit. And now he wants working families to pay .
Thankfully, the workers and their allies have said enough is enough. Democratic legislators have fled the state in order to prevent the Republican legislature from pushing through Walker’s anti-worker proposals. And the protests have continued for seven days – dubbed by some as the “Week of Rage.” 
Will you join us in supporting these protesters with a $15 contribution? We’re in touch with the leaders of the Wisconsin protest, and we’ll send them a contribution or a care package to keep their efforts going – whatever they need. It takes a lot of food to keep 80,000 people on the ground.
Help us send some New York pastrami sandwiches with love to the Cheese State:
So if you want to send pastrami instead of Pizza here’s the way to do it: http://bit.ly/WisconsinSolidarity