Occupy May Day General Strike

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mcmk
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Jan 15 2012 20:21
Occupy May Day General Strike

Copy-pasta from my post on Revleft. Yes, revleft.

Occupy May Day

Quote:
BEGINNING MAY 1, 2012

NO WORK - NO SCHOOL - NO SHOPPING - NO BANKING - NO TRADING

THE PEOPLE OF THE PLANET WILL TAKE TO THE STREETS

#OLA & #OLB are calling on all people of the world to start planning NOW for a Global Strike. The goal is to shut down commerce worldwide and show the 1% we will not be taken for granted, we will not be silenced, WE WILL NOT MOVE until our grievances are redressed.

GENERAL STRIKE AND BOYCOTT CALLED!
FOR IM/MIGRANT RIGHTS
FOR ECONOMIC, SOCIAL, AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE AND LABOR RIGHTS
FOR PEACE WITH JUSTICE
FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES AND AN END TO THE POLICE STATE
FOR HOUSING, EDUCATION, AND HEALTH CARE AS HUMAN RIGHTS
FOR WOMEN'S RIGHTS AND GENDER EQUITY

Every continent, every country, every state, every city will stand up.

Labor and workers are under attack by the 1%. Occupy stands Immigrants and with Labor both organized and not. Unions and union rights are what made our working class strong. Every benefit we have as working people has come from the struggles of organized labor and immigrants fighting for their rights. Now they are trying to destroy our bargaining rights, they want their greedy hands on our pensions. They don't have enough already? ENOUGH.

A DAY FOR MIGRANT RIGHTS, LABOR RIGHTS, HUMAN RIGHTS.

STOP FORECLOSURES!!!

We demand good jobs and good pay for everyone on the planet. Citizen of the country they work in or not. Outsourcing will no longer be tolerated by the so called "job creators" for cheap labor. All human beings deserve a living wage.

Education, Housing and Healthcare are human rights NOT "entitlements."

May Day World Wide General Strike 2012 (May 1st)

Quote:
Call to Action: May 1, 2012 worldwide strike in solidarity with the 99% to shut down the 1%

In many countries, the working classes have made May Day an official holiday. May Day celebrations typically feature elaborate popular parades in these countries. It has long been a focal point for demonstrations by various groups.

May Day is the commemoration of the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago, when Chicago police fired on workers during a general strike for the eight hour workday, killing several demonstrators and resulting in the deaths of several police officers, largely from friendly fire.

May Day has also become synonymous with International Workers' Day, or Labour Day, a day of political demonstrations and celebrations.

Check OccupyMay1st.org for updates (notably their group section).

Los Angeles
Long Beach
Pasadena
Boston
Phoenix

Hopefully this gains momentum. Get organised and spread the word (to your local Occupation), comrades.

syndicalist
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Jan 15 2012 21:06

What you can do to help #Occupy May First and build the general strike!
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=110108182443007

Marc Boyert Occ...
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Feb 2 2012 01:59

Occupy World in offering PAMPHLETS for a MAY DAY STRIKE
http://www.scribd.com/doc/80128678/Occupy-Leaflet-4
LIKE THIS 1: read it - COPY it and re-post everywhere

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Chilli Sauce
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Feb 2 2012 08:04

That leaflet is fucking mental and I wouldn't dream of handing it to my workmates. Kennedy? Admiralty courts? Manifest Destiny? "Civilised" countries? New World Order? Mammon? Has it actually been endorsed by any Occupy?

tastybrain
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Feb 2 2012 09:48
Chilli Sauce wrote:
That leaflet is fucking mental and I wouldn't dream of handing it to my workmates. Kennedy? Admiralty courts? Manifest Destiny? "Civilised" countries? New World Order? Mammon? Has it actually been endorsed by any Occupy?

Haha I seriously doubt it.

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waslax
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Feb 2 2012 23:09

It's a (lame) recuperative effort by some pro-capitalist outfit. Ignore it.

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 3 2012 05:11

I think I'm just going to make this the thread to post updates about this effort in.

Oakland has joined in
http://occupyoakland.org/2012/01/occupy-oakland-decides-to-participate-in-the-global-general-strike-on-may-day/

Here's a slightly better leaflet out of the Occupy Minneapolis subcommittee for May 1st.

Quote:
Occupy May Day

Since the emergence of the Occupy movement, things have changed.

The language and justification for budget cuts, foreclosures, evictions, debt, and unemployment have been challenged. The public discourse has been altered. No longer is it accepted that these things are ‘necessary’. Not only that, but we are slowly showing our power to disrupt ‘business as usual’. We have shut down ports, defended homes against bank forclosure, engaged in workplace and school walk-outs and sick-outs, utilized abandoned property, and taken over public space.

Occupy has captured the imagination and sympathies of far more people than strictly those who have gathered at the various plazas and squares. In workplaces, schools, homes, bars and informal gatherings, people are discussing and thinking about the issues that we have raised or are finally glad to see others also rise up with similar concerns.

But we must and can do more. Expanding the narrative of the 99% to include worker and immigrant issues is something that has to be done. There are movements that existed before Occupy and linking with them is vital for the types of participatory and bold action we seek to take.

We have a chance to unite the seemingly seperate issues of the 99% and grow to be a force that is impossible to ignore or downplay.

In the tradition of martyred Chicago union organizers, the overworked Scandinavian laborers of 1920s northern Minnesota and the Latino/a demonstrators of recent history, we propose that the real Labor Day, International Workers’ Day...May 1st, be branded Occupy May 1st and that we prepare for a mass day of action incorporating the best elements of the immigration rights and Occupy movements to show our strength. Let us use May 1st to demonstrate our ever-growing collective power by organizing and uniting all communities engaged in the ongoing struggle for justice, and to continually build solid networks of resistance to confront the injustices of power and strengthen our communities.

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 3 2012 05:18

Some pics that have been going around






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Juan Conatz
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Feb 3 2012 05:21




bastarx
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Feb 3 2012 06:04

Are there Spanish versions?

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 3 2012 06:21

I have no idea who has made most of these (other than the couple I made myself) so I don't know.

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Chilli Sauce
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Feb 3 2012 07:42
Quote:
Occupy has captured the imagination and sympathies of far more people than strictly those who have gathered at the various plazas and squares...

In the tradition of martyred Chicago union organizers, the overworked Scandinavian laborers of 1920s northern Minnesota and the Latino/a demonstrators of recent history, we propose that the real Labor Day, International Workers’ Day...May 1st, be branded Occupy May 1st

So modest!

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 14 2012 08:45

Occupy Movement Regroups, Preparing for Its Next Phase
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/12/us/occupy-movement-regroups-laying-plans-for-the-next-phase.html?_r=4&hp&fb_source=message

Quote:
Then on May 1, they will try to persuade thousands of Americans who share their belief that the system is rigged against the poor and the middle class to skip work and school, in what they are calling “a general strike” — or “a day without the 99 percent.”

[...]

But some experts who credit Occupy’s achievements to date wonder if the earnest activists will overplay their hand. Some question how many people will heed a call to stay home from work on May 1, especially since labor unions, which have generally supported Occupy’s message, say they will not strike for the day. And beyond that, Occupy’s utopian calls for democracy and justice may be drowned out by the presidential campaign.

Get ready for a General Strike May 1
http://slingshot.tao.ca/displaybi.php?0109001

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Chilli Sauce
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Feb 14 2012 10:27
Quote:
And beyond that, Occupy’s utopian calls for democracy and justice may be drowned out by the presidential campaign.

Do you think they intentionally tried to posit "democracy and justice" against parliamentary politics wink

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 14 2012 12:13

ISO (unsurprisingly) comes out against the Occupy May Day idea. It's funny, this is basically the same type of shit they said in WI before SCFL passed the general strike resolution. Then they switched it up and tried to advocate for it, and then went back to calling it unrealistic right when the tide began to turn towards recall. Some other Trot group actually talks about this in a recent article about the ISO and the ILWU.

http://socialistworker.org/2012/02/08/discussing-the-way-forward

Quote:
UNFORTUNATELY, SOME in the Occupy movement argue that these kinds of campaigns aren't enough. They claim the movement needs to "go big" with a bold initiative. One proposal is for a general strike on May Day. Occupy General Assemblies in some cities have voted to proceed with such organizing--which, according to one group in New York City, should include a "five-day weekend."

There are many problems with this proposal. The most obvious is that strikes in the U.S. are at a historic low, the result of a decades-long employer war on labor and decline in union membership. Going from this starting point to a national general strike by May 1 is, to put it politely, unrealistic.

Such a call risks discrediting the idea of strike action when the goal of Occupy and labor movement militants should be to revive the strike as a weapon--and win the strikes that do take place through stopping production and building solidarity.

Those in support of the May Day proposal point to the success of the November 2 day of action in Oakland, Calif.--in response to Occupy Oakland's call for a general strike following a vicious police raid on its encampment and attack on demonstrators, in which a police projectile nearly killed Iraq war veteran Scott Olsen.

Certainly, many Oakland residents skipped work on November 2, and local unions supported the day of protests, though not as a formal strike. Rank-and-file union members led the organizing, and the day culminated in a march of some 15,000 people for a community picket that closed down the Port of Oakland.

The general strike call in Oakland produced an important and inspiring display of solidarity. But the day of action was not the same as a general strike--not of the kind that Oakland saw in 1946, nor the mass actions that shut down the cities of Toledo, Minneapolis and San Francisco in 1934.

If the term general strike is to mean anything, it must describe the coordinated action of workers in solidarity with one another to shut down production by staying away from work--not as individuals, but through collective action.

Another example for those who favor an Occupy-initiated general strike this year is May Day 2006, when millions of immigrant workers did stay away from work to protest the proposed Sensenbrenner bill that would have turned some 14 million undocumented workers into criminals. With George W. Bush in the White House, even liberal groups usually averse to workers' action, along with some Democratic politicians, jumped on board.

Today, however, the situation is different. Unlike in 2006, when low unemployment made immigrant workers more willing to risk their jobs by skipping work for a day, the high jobless rate will deter such action. And with Barack Obama as president, liberal immigrant rights groups and Democratic politicians are determined to head off any protest that could upset Obama's reelection plans.

A May Day general strike call that hinges on mass participation by immigrant workers is highly unlikely to gain traction. A better way for Occupy to forge links with the immigrant rights movement is to build solidarity with those protesting anti-immigrant laws--like activists on the front lines in Alabama and Arizona--as well people challenging the Obama administration's stepped-up program of deportations.

May Day should be a focus for Occupy, and an important one. Immigrant groups in many cities continue to use that day for protests, and Occupy should support them. It's also important to reassert the history and politics of May Day through meetings, panel discussions and rallies. Occupy has awakened interest in the often neglected history of the struggles of working people and the oppressed, and May Day is an opportunity to bring a new generation of activists into that discussion.

It should go without saying that opposing a call for a general strike on May 1 doesn't mean opposing protest. On the contrary, every city has critical issues that are in need of local actions--and, where appropriate, national days of action. In this regard, the demonstrations planned against the NATO/G8 joint summit in Chicago in May can and should be a focus for Occupy protesters.

Also, they do something that is increasingly annoying to me. The whole 'that's not a real general strike' shit. I mean, the word means so many different things. There's "general strikes" in Europe with participation rates in the low 20s-30s percentile. There are revolutionary general strikes that take on insurrectionary proportions. What happened in Oakland was called a general strike, but the massive May Day 2006 protests, walkouts, sick-ins, etc have only been called a general strike in retrospect. Then there's the whole issue of automatically thinking of unions when the term general strike is thrown around, as if - with around 12% of the workforce, they are some stamp of approval to be gotten. As others have pointed out, that's not how general strikes have happened in the U.S.

I think the term is still useful and should be used, because its something that grabs people's attention and is appealing...but sometimes it seems like the trouble associated with it is not worth it.

syndicalist
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Feb 14 2012 13:26
Peter wrote:
Are there Spanish versions?

The ones I see and am familiar with are in english, thus far. I'll see what plans are for spanish language posters.

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syndicalistcat
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Feb 17 2012 04:28

J.C.: yeah i was going to post the same link:

http://socialistworker.org/2012/02/16/confronting-the-debates

They (Todd Chretien & his partner) make some criticisms of Occupy Oakland that have some basis to them, but they offer an odd definition of "ultra-left". They say it is groups substituting their desire for revolutionary change for working class self-activity.

I think I understand why they say this, in regard to Occupy Oakland, but it's an odd way of putting it. They call for mass marches, but this in fact what may happen on May 1st. In other words, calling for a mass march to highlight the basic issues is a way of mobilizing large numbers of people to take the time...and maybe take the time off from work...to back this.

They also make a slipshod connection between two quite different ideas. On the one hand, they say that the emphasis on street militancy and opposing the police has led some to ignore the work needed to connect with and mobilize broader masses of people. I think this is a valid criticism. But it doesn't follow that the May Day strike call is an expression of that. A person might agree with their criticism on the street militancy point and still want to call for a mass day of action on May 1st.

Quote:
Then there's the whole issue of automatically thinking of unions when the term general strike is thrown around, as if - with around 12% of the workforce, they are some stamp of approval to be gotten. As others have pointed out, that's not how general strikes have happened in the U.S.

But most general strikes have in fact been mainly actions of, or in support of, unionized workers -- the 1892 New Orleans general strike, the Chicago & Milwaukee May 1 1886 strike, the 1910 Philadelphia general strike (which grew out of a street car workers strike), the 1919 Seattle general strike (which grew out of a metal trades shipyard strike), the 1934 Minneapolis general strike (in support of a radical Teamster local), the 1934 Toledo strike (which mobilized Unemployed organizations and others in support of an independent union), the 1934 general strike in San Francisco-Oakland, the 1946 Oakland general strike (out of defense of a group of retail clerks, and supported especially by various unionized workers). The main counter-examples in the USA would be the general strike (mass go slow) on the southern plantations during the civil war (under police state conditions), and the May 1 2006 day without an immigrant.

I think the following piece on the ISO website is better than the piece by Todd Chretien & his partner:

http://socialistworker.org/2012/02/16/we-need-to-get-back-in-step

I think it's better because it sticks to the issue and doesn't try to theorize about alleged political errors of some people.

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Ellar
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Feb 17 2012 14:50

I heard that Occupy Walls street has agreed to do a call out for a international day of action on may 1st, it will be interesting to see how this goes considering over 800 towns and cities responded to the original call for occupy.

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ElusiveElla
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Feb 17 2012 15:05

We have. My group that runs occupywallst.org (the Occupy site with the most traffic) is going to do heavy propaganda efforts and get in contact with lots of people to try to make this happen.

Any advice or whatever is more than welcomed.

occupychicago
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Feb 17 2012 23:47

The entire month of May is going to be exciting.

http://www.adbusters.org/blogs/adbusters-blog/tactical-briefing-25.html

Hey you redeemers, rebels and radicals out there,

Against the backdrop of a global uprising that is simmering in dozens of countries and thousands of cities and towns, the G8 and NATO will hold a rare simultaneous summit in Chicago this May. The world’s military and political elites, heads of state, 7,500 officials from 80 nations, and more than 2,500 journalists will be there.

And so will we.

On May 1, 50,000 people from all over the world will flock to Chicago, set up tents, kitchens, peaceful barricades and #OCCUPYCHICAGO for a month. With a bit of luck, we’ll pull off the biggest multinational occupation of a summit meeting the world has ever seen.

And this time around we’re not going to put up with the kind of police repression that happened during the Democratic National Convention protests in Chicago, 1968 … nor will we abide by any phony restrictions the City of Chicago may want to impose on our first amendment rights. We’ll go there with our heads held high and assemble for a month-long people’s summit … we’ll march and chant and sing and shout and exercise our right to tell our elected representatives what we want … the constitution will be our guide.

And when the G8 and NATO meet behind closed doors on May 19, we’ll be ready with our demands: a Robin Hood Tax … a ban on high frequency ‘flash’ trading … a binding climate change accord … a three strikes and you’re out law for corporate criminals … an all out initiative for a nuclear-free Middle East … whatever we decide in our general assemblies and in our global internet brainstorm – we the people will set the agenda for the next few years and demand our leaders carry it out.

And if they don’t listen … if they ignore us and put our demands on the back burner like they’ve done so many times before … then, with Gandhian ferocity, we’ll flashmob the streets, shut down stock exchanges, campuses, corporate headquarters and cities across the globe … we’ll make the price of doing business as usual too much to bear.

Jammers, pack your tents, muster up your courage and prepare for a big bang in Chicago this Spring. If we don’t stand up now and fight now for a different kind of future we may not have much of a future … so let’s live without dead time for a month in May and see what happens …

for the wild,
Culture Jammers HQ

Antonio de cleyre
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Feb 20 2012 12:35

I think the general strike movement desperately needs an online clearinghouse, a website with printable resources for publicizing the general strike, with information on local general strike meetups etc- a similar resource to this:

http://www.occupytogether.org/

Devoted to the general strike. If the experience of Occupy Together is anything to go off, such a resource might make a huge difference. I can't build such a website myself, but if someone did it would be very helpful!

redsdisease
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Feb 20 2012 16:06

Something like this: http://www.occupymay1st.org/

Caiman del Barrio
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Feb 20 2012 16:39
occupychicago wrote:
The entire month of May is going to be exciting.

http://www.adbusters.org/blogs/adbusters-blog/tactical-briefing-25.html

Hey you redeemers, rebels and radicals out there,

Against the backdrop of a global uprising that is simmering in dozens of countries and thousands of cities and towns, the G8 and NATO will hold a rare simultaneous summit in Chicago this May. The world’s military and political elites, heads of state, 7,500 officials from 80 nations, and more than 2,500 journalists will be there.

And so will we.

On May 1, 50,000 people from all over the world will flock to Chicago, set up tents, kitchens, peaceful barricades and #OCCUPYCHICAGO for a month. With a bit of luck, we’ll pull off the biggest multinational occupation of a summit meeting the world has ever seen.

And this time around we’re not going to put up with the kind of police repression that happened during the Democratic National Convention protests in Chicago, 1968 … nor will we abide by any phony restrictions the City of Chicago may want to impose on our first amendment rights. We’ll go there with our heads held high and assemble for a month-long people’s summit … we’ll march and chant and sing and shout and exercise our right to tell our elected representatives what we want … the constitution will be our guide.

And when the G8 and NATO meet behind closed doors on May 19, we’ll be ready with our demands: a Robin Hood Tax … a ban on high frequency ‘flash’ trading … a binding climate change accord … a three strikes and you’re out law for corporate criminals … an all out initiative for a nuclear-free Middle East … whatever we decide in our general assemblies and in our global internet brainstorm – we the people will set the agenda for the next few years and demand our leaders carry it out.

And if they don’t listen … if they ignore us and put our demands on the back burner like they’ve done so many times before … then, with Gandhian ferocity, we’ll flashmob the streets, shut down stock exchanges, campuses, corporate headquarters and cities across the globe … we’ll make the price of doing business as usual too much to bear.

Jammers, pack your tents, muster up your courage and prepare for a big bang in Chicago this Spring. If we don’t stand up now and fight now for a different kind of future we may not have much of a future … so let’s live without dead time for a month in May and see what happens …

for the wild,
Culture Jammers HQ

hand

Amazing, they reference Marx, Gandhi and a Robin Hood Tax all within the context of an anti-globalisation revisited summit hop. Just how fuckin confused are these guys?

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ElusiveElla
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Feb 20 2012 16:56
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
Amazing, they reference Marx, Gandhi and a Robin Hood Tax all within the context of an anti-globalisation revisited summit hop. Just how fuckin confused are these guys?

Micah (the individual who made the initial call for OWS) is a good person and not confused by any means but yeah the majority of AB pisses off us. It's best to do what we did with OWS...take the initial call and transform it into something less aggravating.

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Feb 20 2012 17:21

Lol, Adbusters.

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Feb 20 2012 18:28

"culture jammers" roll eyes

Also, aren't AdBusters pretty anti-Semitic?

Caiman del Barrio
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Feb 20 2012 20:59
ElusiveElla wrote:
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
Amazing, they reference Marx, Gandhi and a Robin Hood Tax all within the context of an anti-globalisation revisited summit hop. Just how fuckin confused are these guys?

Micah (the individual who made the initial call for OWS) is a good person and not confused by any means but yeah the majority of AB pisses off us. It's best to do what we did with OWS...take the initial call and transform it into something less aggravating.

Yeah from this side of the pond, Occupy in the US seems like a far more plausible pole of attraction for mass workers' action than the unions so i'm pleased to see Americans building for a general strike.

What do peopel think will happen on May 1st in the UK (and elsewhere)?

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ElusiveElla
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Feb 20 2012 21:21
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
ElusiveElla wrote:
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
Amazing, they reference Marx, Gandhi and a Robin Hood Tax all within the context of an anti-globalisation revisited summit hop. Just how fuckin confused are these guys?

Micah (the individual who made the initial call for OWS) is a good person and not confused by any means but yeah the majority of AB pisses off us. It's best to do what we did with OWS...take the initial call and transform it into something less aggravating.

Yeah from this side of the pond, Occupy in the US seems like a far more plausible pole of attraction for mass workers' action than the unions so i'm pleased to see Americans building for a general strike.

What do peopel think will happen on May 1st in the UK (and elsewhere)?

Not entirely sure on the UK front but France and Spain definitely look promising. Some of the people we worked with in the UK to build a world wide general strike didn't like the idea of striking since it'll hurt small business owners or some other petite bourgeois bullshit. wall

My comrades and I are going to be doing something more radical soon smile I'm afraid I can't go to detail soon but it'll change everything.

princess mob
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Feb 21 2012 02:23

This is a nice poster. I really like the 'no chores' addition.

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no.25
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Feb 21 2012 02:47
Chilli Sauce wrote:
"culture jammers" roll eyes

Also, aren't AdBusters pretty anti-Semitic?

Couldn't tell you, but they sure do emanate hipster. Must smash Adbusters.

ElusiveElla wrote:
My comrades and I are going to be doing something more radical soon smile I'm afraid I can't go to detail soon but it'll change everything.

Please tell me you're going to abolish capitalism, and if not, good luck in whatever it is that you're planning.

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Feb 21 2012 02:58

Yeah, the Adbusters call out is super annoying for a number of reasons. Calling for a month long occupation of Chicago with no consulting of Occupy Chicago is out of line for a publishing group. Plus, they interfere with May 1, which numerous other Occupy cities are planning for. And then of course, the whole summit thing is such a dead end, its barely worth commenting on. Lemme predict what will happen, a bunch of people will show up, the summit won't be disrupted. People will get pummeled by the Chicago police and roll back to their hometowns with their tails tucked between their legs and massive legal fines. Just a waste of time.

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