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Young Madison Socialist Reveals Popular ‘Noodles & Company‘ Restaurant Is Actually Harsh ’Dictatorship’
- The nationwide chain has several locations in Madison, Wisconsin. One young socialist, Rob Lewis (ISO member) who is involved in the protests around Madison is now blowing the lid off the real story.
- Aaron Kennedy, the founder of Noodles, grew up on a farm with few to no connections to money. Like my friend Rob, Kennedy also studied at the University of Wisconsin. At 29, while eating at a Chinese restaurant, Kennedy had an idea, and scribbled his business plan on a napkin.
- Scraping some money together from his friends and family and maxing out eight credit cards, Kennedy opened the first Noodles in his basement, and then put together a team with whom he’d build and operate 100 Noodles branches all on their own. It is now a $75 million franchise with 240 locations in 18 different states, providing jobs to over 3,000 employees just like Rob. This is what the American Dream looks like.
- Under Lewis’ vision, however everything Kennedy has worked for would be taken away from him. The status he has earned for himself through his achievements would be reduced to that of one filling out an application for the very business he built from the ground up. Perhaps my imagination is limited, but I at the moment I cannot imagine a greater humiliation. This is what socialism looks like.
ABOUT AARON KENNEDY, FOUNDER & FORMER CHAIRMAN OF NOODLES
(source: <http://www.bus.wisc.edu/alumni/profiles/aaron_kennedy.asp> Univ of Wisconsin)
- Earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism and English at Augustana College in his home state of Illinois and his MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
- He is on the board of the University of Wisconsin Business School, has been named Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young, and is a guest lecturer at several universities including the University of Colorado, University of Denver, University of Wisconsin and the Cooking School of the Rockies.
- It all began when Kennedy, then the marketing director of a New York City design agency, visited an Asian noodle shop in Greenwich Village in 1993. As he sampled the restaurant's collection of Asian-influenced dishes, he realized noodles are a staple all over the world. Although Kennedy had never considered a job in the restaurant industry, his previous experience as a brand manager at Oscar Mayer and PepsiCo was relevant to the task he had in mind.
- That weekend he took his wife out to dinner and shared his idea, jotting down a rough business plan right there. He refined the concept and approached 25 friends and family members for the $250,000 needed to get started.
- Kennedy and Executive Chef Ross Kamens opened the first restaurant in Denver, Colorado, in 1995. The second restaurant opened in downtown Madison, Wisconsin, six months later.
ROB LEWIS SOTS
ROB LEWIS IS A NOODLES EMPLOYEE & MEMBER OF ISO. DURING THE INTERVIEW HE INVITES THE REPORTER TO COME TO A SOCIALIST MEETING THE FOLLOWING DAY CALLED “ FROM CAIRO TO MADISON”
Rob on classes SOT
- There are two fundamental classes that are just a plain fact in society. You either work for someone else or you work for yourself. Most people work for someone else in a way that they aren’t free. You don’t really get to decide your worth. For example I work at Noodles, the restaurant, and basically it’s a dictatorship there. We’re told exactly what to cook, how we’re going to cook it. what time we’re going to get there. And basically if they don’t like what we’re doing, they try to tell us what to do. If we don’t listen they get rid of us. We’re not actually allowed to cooperate in a way that we make decisions together.
Rob on Unions SOT
- I try to convince my fellow employees that we should have a union at Noodles. IT’s a source of power to start with. And then I think in terms of the bigger picture, when you look at revolutions, the way that you actually get rid of any sort of dictatorship is by having workers take control of the place where they work.
Rob on business owners SOT
- If the owner wanted to cooperate with us as an equal, and provide his skills that he had, we would definitely cooperate with him. // We’d have to abdicate his position as being an owner and controller of us. He would have to recognize that we run Noodles together. And basically if he doesn’t want to cooperate with us, he’s against us.
Rob on IRS (socialist magazine)
- It’s an in-depth kind of analysis that goes deeper than just saying what’s happening with current events but kinda goes into the details of analyzing the picture of Who’s involved? what are they trying to do? and kind of a deeper understanding of what’s behind this?
SOTS FROM SOCIALIST MEETING
Phil Gasper, former professor – Feb 23
- We’re linked together as part of a global capitalist economy that’s destroying the environment, that’s destroying people’s lives around the world. And that’s why the parallels that everybody’s been drawing between Cairo and Madison make sense.
Phil Gasper, former professor – Feb 23
- If you want to know what the next 5, or 10, or 20 years is going to look like, it’s not going to look like the last 20 to 30 years. It’s gonna look a lot more like the last month in Egypt and the last week in Wisconsin. Not every day is gonna look like that. But it’s gonna happen more and more and more often.
Mike Imbrogno, AFSCME Local 171 ((at socialist meeting))
- I feel like we can actually have an effect by organizing folks together. No concessions, tax the rich. It’s not our mess, it’s your mess clean it up. it’s the Koch brothers, we need to fight back, etc.
Version:1.0 StartHTML:0000000149 EndHTML:0000010161 StartFragment:0000000199 EndFragment:0000010127 StartSelection:0000000199 EndSelection:0000010127 NEW FARRAKHAN SOTS FROM SAVIOURS’ DAY 2011
FARRAKHAN SPEECH, Feb. 27
- War. They love war over peace. They love wrong over right, and injustice over justice. This is the day of your doom, the end of your world and life (applause)
- What you’re looking at in Tunisia, in Egypt, in Yemen, in Jordan, in Libya, in Bahrain and soon, very soon in all the nations of the world. And even sooner to take place in America so don’t you get bent out of shape what you see happening there, while it’s happening there, you better prepare because it will be coming to your door America. And I hope that President Obama will remember his instructions to other nations. Be careful how you attack and kill innocent people who are protesting. Take your own words into your busom and be reminded when it comes to your door (applause)
- This is a sign that the great Madhi that the Muslim world has been looking for is present in the world. The Christ that you hoped for. The Christ that we long for is present in the world. And all tyrants will be sent down. God is stimulating the rise of the masses. Soon it will come to these shores. Indeed it has already begun.
About Saviours’ Day 2011, Feb. 25 -27 in Rosemont, IL
- The 2011 Saviours' Day convention marks the 81st year of the Nation of Islam's existence in North America. Each year, to commemorate the birth of its founder Master W. Fard Muhammad (February 26, 1877), thousands of members and supporters of the Nation of Islam from around the world make the journey to attend the annual convention during the last week of February for a weekend of fellowship, networking, information dissemination and spiritual renewal
Belief of Madhi Among Muslims
- “The idea of Mahdi has fueled Muslim imagination for centuries. There is no mention of it in the Quran itself. But Prophet Mohammed, according to some narrators, had forecast that God will one day dispatch a redeemer – a Mahdi – to command a Mulsim world and establish an ideal society, after an apocalyptic clash of forces of evil. The Mahdi cannot be killed by mere mortals – at least not during the first seven years of his reign.”
Louis Farrakhan says Moammar Gadhafi has always been a friend
- Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan says Moammar Gadhafi has always been a friend and he won’t distance himself from the Libyan dictator.
- But the 77-year-old said no leader has been loved by 100 percent of his people and said that if Gadhafi is persecuted for crimes against humanity, the same should apply to former President George W. Bush for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
- Farrakhan visited Gadhafi in the 1980s and in 1996 accepted a humanitarian award from him. But during his speech Sunday he warned the wave of revolution spreading across the Middle East is coming to the United States
FARRAKHAN – WRIGHT CONNECTION
02/26/2008, “Meet the Press”
- RUSSERT: The title of one of your books, "Audacity of Hope," you acknowledge you got from a sermon from Reverend Jeremiah Wright, the head of the Trinity United Church. He said that Louis Farrakhan "epitomizes greatness." He said that he went to Libya in 1984 with Louis Farrakhan to visit with Moammar Gadhafi and that, when your political opponents found out about that, quote, "your Jewish support would dry up quicker than a snowball in Hell."
Obama's Farrakhan Test by Richard Cohen, Wash Post
- He has vilified whites and singled out Jews to blame for crimes large and small, either committed by others as well or not at all. (A dominant role in the slave trade, for instance.) He has talked of Jewish conspiracies to set a media line for the whole nation. He has reviled Jews in a manner that brings Hitler to mind.
- And yet Wright heaped praise on Farrakhan. According to Trumpet, he applauded his "depth of analysis when it comes to the racial ills of this nation." He praised "his integrity and honesty." He called him "an unforgettable force, a catalyst for change and a religious leader who is sincere about his faith and his purpose." These are the words of a man who prayed with Obama just before the Illinois senator announced his run for the presidency. Will he pray with him just before his inaugural?
OBAMA’S RESPONSE – JAN. 15, 2008
- Richard Cohen in the Post <http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/01/14/AR2008011402083.html?hpid=opinionsbox1> made Louis Farrakhan -- a former State Senate constituent of Obama's, and the honoree of a publication by his church -- an issue today, and Obama has a comment out now:
- I decry racism and anti-Semitism in every form and strongly condemn the anti-Semitic statements made by Minister Farrakhan. I assume that Trumpet Magazine made its own decision to honor Farrakhan based on his efforts to rehabilitate ex-offenders, but it is not a decision with which I agree.