An assembly of 35-45 people took place yesterday, 22 August, 3.30pm – 5.30pm in Gillet square Tottenham consisting of the Spanish 15M group, British, Greek and other activists of diverse nationalities. The issues discussed were as follows:
Overview of the general situation:
-In Spain general elections took place but the results do not mean anything. The politicians don’t listen to the people. They only do what is good for big business. We are trying to find solutions together. Everything started when a group of Spaniards set up assemblies outside the Spanish Embassy in London. Everyday, everyone had the chance to speak about ideas, communities.
-The Olympic games will not create any job at all. Nobody listens to us
-The whole problem is the system. From here to America and all over the world. Money is destructive. We need to believe that we change the system.
-There are deeper reasons that caused the riots. Protests are taking place everywhere. We have to go to different areas and talk to the people. Got involved also in anti-cuts campaign.
– We should start getting focused on the anti-cuts campaign and provide ideas about how to change the whole system.
-There is extreme alienation in this community. The political system is corrupt. Police and media have been involved in massive scandals. If there is one thing that united people, this was the hatred against media and police. They call it violence but Britain has created wars.
-We can stop the cuts. Cuts have strong relationship with these riots. I live in an area where many people have been affected by the cuts. We must be focused on what we can do to change this situation.
-We have to fight capitalism but we have to create situations.
-The problem is not just economic. It is political. Capitalism sets as and its imaginary (accumulation of wealth, the extreme adherence to production and unlimited growth) has created such terrible problems. We need a system that promotes other values, most of all, political participation and egalitarianism.
-What we see nowadays is the criminalisation of poverty and an attempt to scapegoat populations. Violence is not useful and of course doesn’t achieve anything. The problem is not only capitalism but this particular capitalism. I call it existential capitalism but I believe that there is no perfect system. There is no absolute solution, no blue print. That’s why we have to sit down and discuss. Neoliberalism has created this massive alienation, this is a proof of its failure…
-The problem is both political and economical. The austerity package has been imposed by the politicians that promote their neoliberal plan.
Discussions regarding how can we organise assemblies:
– We need to speak with other people, handout leaflets, spread information, use a strategic such like a normal event
There was a debate about the issue whether we should move from place to place or stay in the same area, integrate with the community and later on expand it.
-We should get in contact with local communities, with different ethnic communities. But for the moment it is a good idea to carry out here.
-We have to stay in a place because the problem is not only how to understand capitalism but to understand also the local problems and their relation with capitalism. We need to speak more about how to find ways to act (peacefully). We need to invite more people.
-We should imitate Athens. We spend too much time in theoretical analysis which is good, but we need more action.
-We need to organise a campaign via poetry, art and images. Explain the people what is the benefit of the assemblies. We need to go to council estates areas also.
-We need structure. We must go to different events and talk to people. Musicians can spread the word.
1) Meet here for at least 2 weeks (voted yes)
2) Getting involved in council estates and talk with the residents.
-Possible solutions and not just discussions
-We need a calendar so people would know that every Sunday we will have an assembly.
-Use social networks. Prepare a specific manifesto. The Real Democracy manifesto was simple and easy to understand. That’s why they succeed…
There was some more discussion regarding the manifesto:
-It should be focused on how it could rise awareness and direct peaceful action
-We need some anti-globalisation from a humanistic perspective
-We need to say that we don’t have the absolute solutions to the problems but we need to sit down and discuss about that.
-Everyone should be included in this assemblies
-Corporations and banks have to work for their own. People’s assemblies need to set up their own institutions.
-The problem is not the economy but the institutions of the society.