Probably moving from Seattle to Melbourne in a few months

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Uncle Aunty
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Apr 11 2013 04:14
Probably moving from Seattle to Melbourne in a few months

Hello!

Come September it looks like I will be moving to Melbourne for 2-3 years. I honestly know nothing of Melbourne, much less Australia. Would love a chance to talk to people over the internet now and chat with people in person come September. Message me if you like.

Any good radical book recommendations on Australian history would be great as well.

For whatever it is worth, I have been a longtime member of the Seattle Solidarity Network.

thanks!

Hungry56
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Apr 11 2013 07:51

Hi. I am from Adelaide, all I know about Melbs is that there is the Melbourne Anarchist Club, and Melbourne Trades Hall which is an old union building that everyone uses. I have been told there are bullet holes in the Melbourne Trades Hall from police shooting at rallies. Melbourne is nice, I've been there a couple of times.

There aren't many good, radical books on Aussie History. A New Brittania by Humphrey McQueen (Maoist) is ok. Right now I'm reading a book on the NSW Builders Labourers Federation called Green Bans, Red Union and it seems to be the best book on the subject. The BLF are the most radical union we have ever had, research all you can on them.

Our most famous working-class revolutionaries are:

Gary Foley the aboriginal activist, who identifies as an anarchist but is focused on aboriginal issues. He is still active, he recently gave a talk at the Melbourne Anarchist Club. He helped design the aboriginal flag and was the political force behind it. He has a bunch of articles on the net. One of my mates here in Adelaide is housemates with his son.

Jack Mundey, the most influential figure in the BLF, who is no longer very radical or active as far as I know.

There is a Brisbane Solidarity Network. Brisbane is beautiful and you should talk to them about your experiences in Seasol.

What kind of music do you like? The greatest ever Aussie hip-hop album is Matty B - The Courageous LP, and the most exciting new Aussie rapper is Kaye One. Some (musically) good Aussie punk bands are Reckless Aggression, Straightjacket Nation, Suffer, Nun and Pathetic Human.

For a more thorough understanding of Australia, watch Mad Max, Romper Stomper, and Chopper.

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ites
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Apr 11 2013 08:00

Sweet, just as long as you're not from the backwaters of California that sounds like a win for Melbourne.

Robert Hughes wasn't a radical but his history of Australia, 'A Fatal Shore,' is pretty sound: http://www.amazon.com/Fatal-Shore-Epic-Australias-Founding/dp/0394753666

'Power Without Glory' by Frank Hardy is a class indictment of the corruption characteristic of Australian politics in general and the Australian Labor Party in particular. I lived next to his niece a few years ago, so her story went. http://www.amazon.com/Power-Without-Glory-Frank-Hardy/dp/084640740X/

Would be interested to hear about solidarity networking; Melbourne has had the Workers Solidarity Network for a while which has been effective at time though populated mostly by trots apparently who seem to have abandoned it when no longer useful as a recruitment tool.

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ites
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Apr 11 2013 08:03

Gary Foley, yep - his website is also pretty useful as a way of getting up to speed on indigenous issues. He recently got a doctorate in history from Hellbourne University but was an authority on indigenous history long before that. http://www.kooriweb.org/foley/indexb.html

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Rats
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Apr 11 2013 16:27

That is defs not the best aust hip hop album, you are so full of shit.

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Rats
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Apr 11 2013 16:33

And why would you move to melbourne? It's a dreary and horrible place, and noone there is actually from melbourne, all from interstate. Melbourne is like a slum in comparison to Adelaide. I think whatever you're moving there for could easily be done in Adelaide. Just saying.

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A Wotsit
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Apr 11 2013 17:20

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With Sober Senses
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Apr 12 2013 08:01

Watch Bad Boy Bubby, The Proposition and Muriel's Wedding and you will know everything you need to know....

caterpillar
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Apr 12 2013 10:13

Union Solidarity was quite big here while the Liberal government was in and workchoices (a really anti-union set of laws) was in. It was basically the only way the unions could get around a lot of the laws. This had pretty broad involvement of the left and community. After the Liberals were defeated and worchoices scrapped the unions mostly abandoned Union Solidarity and it was changed to Workers Solidarity Network. This is still going and does useful work, but it's nowhere near as big as Union Solidarity was. They would be worth getting in touch with.

I haven't actually read this, but it would probably be worth looking at
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3324863-radical-melbourne

Personally I'd strongly recommend checking out Friends of the Earth, they are quite good in Melbourne. I think in some countries they are a bit NGOish but they are quite radical here and very broad and with links to most campaigns and groups.

If you want more specific anarchist groups there's Melbourne Anarchist Club, Anarchist Affinity, Melbourne Anarchist Communist Group, Anarchos-syndicalist Federation and Barricade Books. (I'm pretty sure you can google them all).

There is also a group that organises Camp Anarchy and the Anarchist book fair:
http://campanarchy.org/about

Uncle Aunty
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Apr 12 2013 15:37

Thanks all! I'll be sure to take copious notes on the movie recommendations..

One last question for now: what are some decent news sites?

Uncle Aunty
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Apr 12 2013 15:39

Oh I am moving to Melbourne because thats where my wife landed a job.

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ites
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Apr 13 2013 04:20
Uncle Aunty wrote:
Thanks all! I'll be sure to take copious notes on the movie recommendations..

One last question for now: what are some decent news sites?

This is also great: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everynight_..._Everynight

New Matilda is probably the best source for independent journalism. Crikey is more established but also more wishy washy small-l liberal in its politics.

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ites
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Apr 13 2013 04:26
Rats wrote:
Melbourne is like a slum in comparison to Adelaide.

Good show old boy! Now that you have insulted the locale where my parents decided to settle and reproduce now we can engage in some spirited back and forth banter about the respective merits of those geographical spaces most familiar to us! Woohoo!

No. In reality it's a false dichotomy: Melbourne and Adelaide are both spiritual wastelands where good ideas are crushed beneath the juggernaut of profit and good men and women die like dogs.

Aunty Jack
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Apr 17 2013 06:34

Cool, glad to have you in the country! Come to Sydney sometime to do a presentation on SeaSol if you get the chance. There's be a ready audience here for sure.

Revolutionary Industrial Unionism by Verity Burgmann is an absolutely excellent history of the IWW in Australia. It's fantastically readable and is a really high quality piece of historical scholarship (it makes a few pretty stupid remarks about Australian anarchism on one page, but other than that is almost impossible to fault). It's on Book Depository, although it's also available in lots of public and university libraries: http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Revolutionary-Industrial-Unionism-Verity-Burgmann/9780521476980

Like Hungry56 said, Green Bans, Red Union by Verity Burgmann and her sister Meredith is another excellent one. It's also available in a lot of libraries.

Trade Unionism in Australia: a History from Flood to Ebb Tide is probably the best national history of workers' struggles since the late 1960s. It's by Tom Bramble, a member of the national executive of Socialist Alternative, the biggest Trotskyist party in Australia, but the politics of the book are fairly good - sympathetic to rank-and-file action and generally hostile to union officials. You can also get it on Book Depository but generally it's also widely available to the public in libraries. http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Trade-Unionism-Australia-Tom-Bramble/9780521716123 Bramble's book Labor's Conflict is also a reasonably good Marxist history of the Australian Labor Party.

I think that pretty much covers most Australian labour history. As far as Australian news goes, two decent websites are greenleft.org.au and sa.org.au - they're both trot websites and so, as such, often have some pretty dubious content, but they're still a good source of news and are regularly updated. Unfortunately there isn't really an equivalent to Libcom in Australia...

Hope you enjoy some of these books/websites and otherwise have a great time in the country!

happyanarchy
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Apr 20 2013 06:39

The B.A.S.T.A.R.D. Archive is the online version of the 'Black and Green' bookshop that was open in Brisbane about 2005.

It has a digital library of many of the zines and pamphletes we had in stock. Including one about Chummy Fleming, a Melbourne anarchist active in the late 19th century.

http://www.bastardarchive.org/

Also a few Australian writers I'd recommend are Graham Purchase and Brian Martin. And the old Aussie classic "You Can't Blow Up a Social Relationship", written by Brisbane anarchists in the late 1970's.

http://archive.org/details/YouCantBlowUpASocialRelationshipTheAnarchistC...

Finally the Brisbane Solidarity Network website has a number of downloads, including "The Squatters Handbook" specific to Queensland. Thousands of copies of this have been distributed. And it was so popular that a Qld government agency dealing with homelessness reprinted it (without permission and minus the anarchist politics), and it got a mention in a local street rag.

http://www.solnet.co.nr/

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Lumpen
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Apr 21 2013 10:34

What suburb are you moving to? All the cool anarchists live in Brunswick.

All the book/movie recommendations are pretty much it. Romper Stomper took place in Melbourne, but it's basically a neonazi masturbation fantasy.

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ites
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Apr 21 2013 15:09

Brunswick is full of snotty hipsters who think being cool is a matter of where you live, not who you are and your attitude towards other people.

Ablokeimet
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May 3 2013 05:11
caterpillar wrote:
After the Liberals were defeated and worchoices scrapped the unions mostly abandoned Union Solidarity and it was changed to Workers Solidarity Network. This is still going ...

Actually, the WSN was set up a few months after Union Solidarity dissolved, though to do a very similar job, but with mostly different people involved. The WSN has now gone into hibernation for the time being, because it relies on having pickets to support - and the union officials have not been keen to get their members out the gate while there is a Labor government. Because of the lack of strikes, the WSN has had very little to do. It's a solidarity organisation, not a union or a political group.

caterpillar wrote:
If you want more specific anarchist groups there's Melbourne Anarchist Club, Anarchist Affinity, Melbourne Anarchist Communist Group, Anarchos-syndicalist Federation and Barricade Books. (I'm pretty sure you can google them all)

The first four named groups all have web sites - though one might find the fourth more easily by spelling "anarcho-syndicalist" properly. I'm sure all would be delighted to meet up with new comrades.

woooo
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May 5 2013 03:26

A couple sites to link u in

http://slackbastard.anarchobase.com/

http://disaccords.wordpress.com/

Uncle Aunty
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Joined: 18-09-11
May 5 2013 21:19

Thanks again everybody. I am looking into all of the suggestions.

woooo
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May 6 2013 07:33

3cr.org.au
Community left radio also stream and podcast audio . So u can familiarize that way.
Also 3knd
And radio national

The tracker is a good indigenous newspaper.

There are left-communist, anarcho-nihilist wannabees, a smaller squatter scene, antifas in small numbers and even some communisers about as well as a range of anarchist working on migrant, work, indigenous stuff and DIY communities here.

woooo
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May 6 2013 08:17

Oh and there is the IWW, Facebook if your on it as a way into things

Uncle Aunty
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Jun 8 2013 18:19
Lumpen wrote:
What suburb are you moving to? All the cool anarchists live in Brunswick.

Not sure yet... If anybody knows of any relatively clean, quiet and responsible houses with a room opening up this September - please send me a message!

woooo
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Jun 19 2013 22:14

http://www.anarchistmedia.org/