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Saul Newman – From Bakunin to Lacan

Newman coined the term «post-anarchism» as a general term for political philosophies filtering 19th century anarchism through a post-structuralist lens, and later popularized it through his 2001 book From Bakunin to Lacan. Thus he rejects a number of concepts traditionally associated with anarchism, including essentialism, a «positive» human nature, and the concept of revolution. The links between poststructuralism and anarchism have also been developed by thinkers like Todd May and Lewis Call.

Newman is currently Reader in Political Theory at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He received his B.A. from the University of Sydney, and his Ph.D in political science from the University of New South Wales. His work has been translated into Turkish, Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese and Serbo-Croatian, and has been the subject of a number of debates amongst anarchist theorists and activists as well as academics.

Welcome to the (killing) Machine, my dear

«Let penalties be regulated and proportional to the offences, let the death sentence be passed only on those convicted of murder, and let tortures that revolt humanity be abolished [1]»

Protests  against the public executions proliferated in the second half of the  eighteenth century: among the philosophers and theoreticians of the law;  among lawyers and parlementaires; in popular petitions and among the  legislators of the assemblies. Another form of punishment was needed:  the physical confrontation between the sovereign and the condemned man  must end; this hand-to-hand fight between the vengeance of the prince  and the contained anger of the people, through the mediation of the  victim and the executioner, must be concluded. Very soon the public  execution became intolerable. On the side of power, where it betrayed  tyranny, excess, the thirst for revenge, and ‘the cruel pleasure taken  in punishing’ (Petion de Villeneuve, 641), it was revolting. On the side  of the victim who, though reduce do despair, was still expected tobless  ‘heaven and its iudges who appeared to have abandoned him’ (Boucher  d’Argis, 1781, 125), it was shameful. It was, in any case, dangerous, in  that it provided a support for a confrontation between the violence of  the king and the violence of the people. It was as if the sovereign  power did not see, in this emulation of atrocity, a challenge that it  itself threw down and which might one day be taken up: accustomed as it  was to ‘seeing blood flow’, the people soon learnt that ‘it could be  revenged only with blood’ (Lachdre). This need for punishment without  torture was first formulated as a cry from the heart or from an outraged  nature. In the worst of murderers, there is one thing, at least, to be  respected when one punishes: his ‘humanity’ [2].

«A 17-year-old youth was shot by a policeman and succumbed to his injuries» the media said. For them Rishi Chandrikasing is only a dead person with an age and a gender, he has no name, nor a cause of death.

The correct phrasing should be: «17-year-old Rishi Chandrikasing was murdered by a police officer.» He was a human being shot dead by a policeman in cold blood, and his name should not be forgotten. It was a brutal murder and it could have been anyone in his place.

Let us examine the facts from the start. After receiving a call about an armed man who was threatening people, police arrived at the Hollands Spoor railway station in the Hague, the Netherlands, in the early hours of the morning on Saturday 24th of November. According to eyewitnesses quoted in the Telegraaf, three police officers, one of them in plain clothes, rushed into the station with their weapons drawn. Rishi was on one of the platforms when the policemen ordered him to raise his hands. The boy moved his hands to his waist, and one of the policemen shot him in the back of the neck. The boy succumbed to his injuries and died later on in the hospital.

During the weekend, the police took statements from witnesses, the prosecutors reported that they have photographs of the crime scene, the post-mortem examination was carried out and no weapon was found on or close to the victim. An eyewitness stated that the 17-year-old had raised his hands but it was already too late. Specifically, she said: «He was in a state of shock when he realised that the police were after him. They yelled ‘Police! Police!’ and ‘Freeze!’. Before Rishi could turn around, and a fraction of a second after he raised his hands, the shot had already been fired. Based on the initial findings of the enquiry during which, amongst other things, the security cameras were studied, the prosecutor’s office announced that the eyewitness’ statement is not substantively accurate on one point, but they did not clarify which point it was.

The Hague HS | Rishi

Around 200 people, mostly youths, took part in a silent march on Sunday evening, laying flowers and lighting candles on the platform where Rishi was murdered. On  social networks, many people voiced their anger and demanded revenge, with the Dutch Police Union declaring it was shocked by these serious threats. After the demonstration, a tile on the platform where someone had written «the cop will die, promise» was removed by the police. «Such statements cross the line,» said spokesperson Han Busker and he confirmed that the police will proceed with further investigations.

Every day friends and others visit the spot on the platform where candles, flowers, letters and keepsakes are laid out in the memory of Rishi; they express their concern about the society in which they live and feel numb in the face of this unjust death. Echoing the general sentiment, a friend of his said: «The police received a call about an armed man and when they reached the platform they thought that Rishi was the suspect. They didn’t know if it was him. And It wasn’t. He was going home from a party, sober, and asked the conductor for instructions on how to get home. A man in plain clothes ordered him to raise his hands, he became terrified and tried to show that he was unarmed. He shot him in the back of the neck without any warning! The officer is not in jail, he has not even been suspended…» They also state that «if he weren’t Indonesian, there would have been a bigger reaction by society, there would have been more support.»

A demonstration was organized on Saturday December 1st in the memory of Rishi and against police violence in the Hague. More than 300 people showed up, most of whom were first – or second – generation immigrants. In the afternoon of Monday December 3rd, friends and people who stood in solidarity, tried to prevent the station’s security personnel from removing the keepsakes and cleaning the slogans written on the walls and tiles. It ended with security personnel achieving their objective, after everyone had left. His friends warn: «You want the murder to be forgotten. You will have to imprison us to make this happen.» [3]

Rishi’s family wishes to press charges, since they believe that the police officer could have shot him in the leg, if he had felt threatened, and they consider their son’s death a murder. They also state that no-one should get away with murder, not even the police.

The police said: «Of course the greatest impact is on the family. But we should not underestimate the impact on the police force, the police department and the officers involved.» The spokesman for the prosecutor’s office told news agency ANP that «It’s not common to interrogate police officers as suspects (for the murders they commit)

Even though the police declared that no comment will be made until the investigation of the case has been concluded, leaks to the press started right after the preliminary findings were reported. The somewhat limited reactions meant that although the media covered the story, it did not have much impact. Mainstream media outlets reported the shooting and began researching the victim’s past, ‘in an attempt to portray the victim as “black” as possible, while absolving the police as “white” as possible.’

In cases related to police violence, mass media normally employ an established formula of narrative reconstruction (a common practice when covering actions by social/political movements).

Initially they make references to «public opinion» (a hideous construct, even as a linguistic expression – remember Pierre Bourdieu’s «L’opinion publique n’existe pas» – Public opinion does not exist), essentially kidnapping it. That is, they attribute definitive characteristics to the subject of violence and the matters raised by such events. The irony is that, while opinion polls (validity and utility aside) are used on many other issues to reinforce the media’s portrayal of «public opinion,» in violent cases such as Rishi’s murder, they rarely bother to do the same, i.e. ‘capture the pulse’ of the people. This is possibly because they are so used to arrogantly reporting ‘isolated instances’ of police violence, that they don’t even find it necessary to enhance society’s already conservative reflexes. After all, the police are an institution of the state, and as such, regrettably enjoy relative widespread acceptance among bourgeois society. Thus with phrases such as: «the local community is concerned about the increase in crime in the Hague train station area,» they are telling three lies at once: First, that the majority are concerned; second, that crime is on the rise; and finally -and most crucially- that this has something to do with the youth’s death.

The second narrative is that of the social norm. That is, casting the victim as someone very different from the masses, referring to seemingly irrelevant details (such as his hair or piercings, or even something that someone «heard» the victim say x years ago, about a policeman/priest/teacher/pregnant woman who was passing by). Moreover, sensitive private information is serially breached, with the generous help of the state institution who ungrudgingly leak such information as anonymous sources. When dealing with immigrants things are even easier, since the construction of an artificial reality is a piece of cake.

The third narrative is an appeal to the law. Even if the victim had no police record, there is a vague «tendency to delinquency» which is always demonstrated by irrelevant factors (e.g. he was at a concert where scuffles broke out 2 years ago, he was passing outside a stadium where riots took place, etc.). If there is a police record, the media’s job is facilitated, as any prior criminal act or «deviant» behaviour of the victim, as irrelevant as it may be, even in legal terms, is magically linked to the current, very specific and independent incident, as if the two are interrelated!

Extensive articles on Rishi’s previous convictions in cases involving accusations of burglary, implying or even openly stating that he was a dangerous and troubled person who could potentially harm people, are at the very least an insult to the reader’s intelligence. The fact that «he was living in a shelter, where he was meant to be at the time of the murder,» is also used for sensationalist effect or as a covert accusation. Journalists rhetorically ask what Rishi Chandrikasing was doing at the platform at this time, when he was supposed to have returned to the shelter five hours before the shooting. The Telegraaf asks: «What the boy was doing at this time out in the street is a mystery». Phrases such as, «even though the youth had a criminal record and was living under social work supervision, his friends say that he had turned his back on his past and had returned to school,» have an almost emotional lean in favour of the victim (even in linguistic terms «even his friends»). However, the reference to his criminal record is obscene [in most European judicial systems it’s also illegal, since access to such information is granted only to the penal judge who is possibly – in the future – going to judge the person with the criminal record, and no one else (for certain different types of criminal behaviour, access to the criminal record is also granted to other public services – but this is not applicable in Rishi’s case)]. On one hand, the powerful, inculpable system has classified him as a criminal («who knows what a brat he was»), and on the other, he is defended by his friends («but, come on, what else would his friends say?»). This would matter, as far as the legal system is concerned, if he was facing charges!

The final narrative is the bystanders’ and eye witnesses’ reactions. Here we have a threesome of cooperating authorities: The first one (the police) leaks information to slander his personality, the second (the media) manufactures the image, and when the time comes for the third (the judges) to decide, they already have everything laid out for them. The Telegraaf interviewed one of the witnesses who stated that Rishi Chandrikasing seemed to be «a completely normal guy,» contrasting this statement with the victim’s previous convictions.

The structural increase of police violence is evident; media and politicians, rather than taking these warning signs seriously and starting to question the functionality of the police, successfully call «public opinion» to express its sympathy for the police, with the argument that «policemen are under constant pressure,» repeatedly reminding us how dangerous and difficult the job of the protector of society is, which can lead to instantly wrong conclusions. The usual debate in the media after most of the state murders is the defective training of police officers and the bad organization of the corps, which end up with such «accidents» is that we should sympathise with the poor officers who are so overworked that they might make the wrong decisions once in a while -‘everyone is human, after all’. We can’t help but wonder «how many are these mistakes?» 17-year-old Rishi Chandrikasing was not the first in the list of police violence victims, since this is the fifth time that such an ‘incident’ – as most mainstream media refer to the murder by a policeman – happened and that someone got killed by police shootings this year [4].

Police in the Netherlands are allowed to shoot when they see a gun and theirs (or others’) lives are in danger. As a result these situations are legally classified as «self defence». In this case there was no gun, although the mass media misinformed the public that there was one.

The multiple cases of police violence indicate that authority enforcement is not an individual incident that can be excused using the simplified rationale of stress and threat. The practice of police violence is the rule, regardless of the factors that the state mechanisms are pleased to promote as being the true causes of the state’s murders.

"Justice/Police victim"

«Justice/Police victim»

Our societies are governed by relations of power, on the basis of which, the value of human life is judged. In cases where there has been a dead policeman the media (and the state of course) condemn the murderer (regardless of outside factors – things like stress, fatigue or threat aren’t even brought up) and they talk about the value of human life with soothing words. The system is made in such a way that a human life is measured based on the proximity which that person had with the official structures of authority and how many boxes were ticked in the prerequisites for social norms. Thus, someone like Rishi, who does not fit the prerequisites that would make his life worth the same as a cop’s life, can be justifiably killed, by beautifully garnishing his life’s alleged lack of value with his activities, for which he had previously been punished by the very same system that killed him. The only thing that is not clearly stated is that, between the lines that remind one of students’ essays, the only logical conclusion is that the very idea of a hypothetical threat’s existence – in reality: doubt of Law and Power’s authority – is considered to be superior to any «violator’s» or socially deviant’s life.

Conclusions

Who benefits from our repression, from the acceptance of our repression? What role does the timeless feeding with flows of images and words that put the Manichean permanent dipoles in the centre constructing a world where the good guys always wear the uniforms and use violence to save us just before the end, to redeem us, sanctifying state violence and aggression against the «bad guys,» who will endlessly be renamed and re-baptized, play?

Why is it that in every state murder, the senseless and brutal response of the police spokesman: «The police did the best they could with the means available,» is seen as a logical argument and is constantly used by the mass media? If I murdered a ‘Rishi’ in cold blood, an innocent 17 year old in a train station, would the same be considered as a logical argument by the mainstream media and not as insane or immoral?

-Yes. I killed Rishi, I did the best I could with the means available.

-Innocent.

However, the idea that the each community is to blame for the evils of crime that makes policing «necessary,» the ease with which it justifies violent crimes as police «mistakes,» only reproduces – and feeds on – the mindset of the slave.

It’s different if someone is unable to see reality and is left in ignorance of totalitarianism’s onslaughting raid, from cynically accepting that there is some form of tyranny and actually choosing to rationalise its necessity; to not negotiate in any way the «privilege» of being part of the Machine; to not care how the Machine is treating others; to consider nonnegotiable the control over everyone’s’ life by any means and victims of police violence as casualties; to initially laugh with the invocation of the Orwellian nightmare, but eventually accepting it in all its glory, because «that’s how the Machine Is.»

To see the truth, but to not consider it useful any more.

Rishi was murdered. Rishi was unarmed. Rishi wasn’t the one the cops were looking for. Rishi didn’t resist. Rishi died confused. But why are you telling me all this? I don’t want to know; I don’t know what to do with the truth.

The heart of the struggle against police violence and state repression must be the community, the neighbourhood, the collective. Each member of this human resistance should be considered essential and their loss should be treated as what it really is: a brutal amputation. It is about time for the passive acceptance of state assassinations to be converted to a dynamic resistance against everything conveniently presented as circumstances, to be given powers, given practice. Understanding that police violence isn’t a virus that attacks a healthy body, but a tumor in metastasis in an already sick body, we recognise that the police cannot be reformed. As long as the 8 o’ clock news junkies feel comfortable with their current position in the mincing Machine, the murder of a 17 year old carefree child, Rishi, will be written off, his life will be trivialized, wrapped with the ribbon of collateral damage.

It doesn’t have to be this way and we can change it. But the truth right now is that the cops murdered Rishi and the next day ate at home.

Sen, Evi

The article in Greek, here

[1] With these sentences, the Ministry of Justice summarises the overall position of notebook complaints in relation to torture in 1789. E. Seligman, La Justice sous la Révolution, vol. 1, 1901, and A. Desjardin, Les Cahiers des États généraux et la justice criminelle, 1883, p. 13-20.

[2] Michel Foucault: Surveiller et punir. Naissance de la prison Gallimard (English translation: Discipline and Punish – The birth of prison)

[3] Sunday, December 9th, friends and those in solidarity tried to reclaim the area, in memory of their friend. There were three detains, in one of which extremely brutal treatment was used by the police.

[4] These are representative examples of police violence, some of which ended up in the death of the victims:

August 2012: Police entered a house in Apeldoorn after the neighbours reported that a man was confused and holding a knife. The policeman shot dead the man.

June 2012: A video aired online that showed a policewoman kicking and harshly beating up a homeless man without reason, after she had used pepper spray on him. After that she handcuffed him and arrested him while he was on the ground because of the preceding beating. Even though many people reacted, the «incident» ended up with the mayor of Rotterdam handing over flowers to the police officer because she was «so traumatised by the negative reactions on her act!»  We should note that when Paauw became chief of the Rotterdam police on 1 October 2010 he made a much-cited speech which perhaps can explain where he comes from, ideologically. Among other statements, he declared that “the police are not your best friend”. He then went on to add, “the police must be the bosses on the streets. That involves things you would not do to your best friend”.

May the 26th, 2012: Policemen attacked an Italian tourist in Amsterdam because he was riding a bicycle in the wrong direction.

On the same day: Police invaded a house in the Hague after a neighbour’s call. A man was found in the residence holding a knife, the policeman shot him dead. Before the man died, he managed to throw the knife and it injured a policewoman.

May the 3rd 2012: During a scuffle which took place in a cafeteria in Amsterdam, a man stabbed two others. Police intervened in order to arrest him and he got killed because he resisted arrest.

July 2011: 22-year-old İhsan Gürzz was found dead in a police department cell. While his family claimed that he died because of excessive police violence, policemen claim that he died of a heart attack, even though it was evident that his face suffered a severe beating.

November 2011: During Sinter Klaas celebrations policemen attacked and harshly beat people wearing T-shirts with the label «Black Peter is Racism».

And for those who wonder about what is happening in Greece, let’s not only dwell on the policemen Korkoneas and Melistas (the two cops that murdered A.Grigoropoulos and M.Kaltezas respectively), but let’s read the long list of police terrorism victims, here.

Albert Camus: Neither Victims Nor Executioners

Yes, we must raise our voices. Up to this point, I have refrained from appealing to emotion. We are being torn apart by a logic of history which we have elaborated in every detail — a net which threatens to strangle us. It is not emotion which can cut through the web of a logic which has gone to irrational lengths, but only reason which can meet logic on its own ground. But I should not want to leave the impression… that any program for the future can get along without our powers of love and indignation. I am well aware that it takes a powerful prime mover to get men into motion and that it is hard to throw one’s self into a struggle whose objectives are so modest and where hope has only a rational basis — and hardly even that. But the problem is not how to carry men away; it is essential, on the contrary, that they not be carried away but rather that they be made to understand clearly what they are doing.

To save what can be saved so as to open up some kind of future — that is the prime mover, the passion and the sacrifice that is required. It demands only that we reflect and then decide, clearly, whether humanity’s lot must be made still more miserable in order to achieve far-off and shadowy ends, whether we should accept a world bristling with arms where brother kills brother; or whether, on the contrary, we should avoid bloodshed and misery as much as possible so that we give a chance for survival to later generations better equipped than we are.

For my part, I am fairly sure that I have made the choice. And, having chosen, I think that I must speak out, that I must state that I will never again be one of those, whoever they be, who compromise with murder, and that I must take the consequences of such a decision. The thing is done, and that is as far as I can go at present…. However, I want to make clear the spirit in which this article is written.

We are asked to love or to hate such and such a country and such and such a people. But some of us feel too strongly our common humanity to make such a choice. Those who really love the Russian people, in gratitude for what they have never ceased to be — that world leaven which Tolstoy and Gorky speak of — do not wish for them success in power politics, but rather want to spare them, after the ordeals of the past, a new and even more terrible bloodletting. So, too, with the American people, and with the peoples of unhappy Europe. This is the kind of elementary truth we are likely to forget amidst the furious passions of our time.

Yes, it is fear and silence and the spiritual isolation they cause that must be fought today. And it is sociability and the universal intercommunication of men that must be defended. Slavery, injustice, and lies destroy this intercourse and forbid this sociability; and so we must reject them. But these evils are today the very stuff of history, so that many consider them necessary evils. It is true that we cannot “escape history,” since we are in it up to our necks. But one may propose to fight within history to preserve from history that part of man which is not its proper province. That is all I have to say here. The “point” of this article may be summed up as follows:

Modern nations are driven by powerful forces along the roads of power and domination. I will not say that these forces should be furthered or that they should be obstructed. They hardly need our help and, for the moment, they laugh at attempts to hinder them. They will, then, continue. But I will ask only this simple question: What if these forces wind up in a dead end, what if that logic of history on which so many now rely turns out to be a will o’ the wisp? What if, despite two or three world wars, despite the sacrifice of several generations and a whole system of values, our grandchildren — supposing they survive — find themselves no closer to a world society? It may well be that the survivors of such an experience will be too weak to understand their own sufferings. Since these forces are working themselves out and since it is inevitable that they continue to do so, there is no reason why some of us should not take on the job of keeping alive, through the apocalyptic historical vista that stretches before us, a modest thoughtfulness which, without pretending to solve everything, will constantly be prepared to give some human meaning to everyday life. The essential thing is that people should carefully weight the price they must pay….

All I ask is that, in the midst of a murderous world, we agree to reflect on murder and to make a choice. After that, we can distinguish those who accept the consequences of being murderers themselves or the accomplices of murderers, and those who refuse to do so with all their force and being. Since this terrible dividing line does actually exist, it will be a gain if it be clearly marked. Over the expanse of five continents throughout the coming years an endless struggle is going to be pursued between violence and friendly persuasion, a struggle in which, granted, the former has a thousand times the chances of success than that of the latter. But I have always held that, if he who bases his hopes on human nature is a fool, he who gives up in the face of circumstances is a coward. And henceforth, the only honorable course will be to stake everything on a formidable gamble: that words are more powerful than munitions.

Via The Anarchist Library

The article in greek

Shortlink: http://wp.me/pyR3u-aTw

Michael Bakunin: Power Corrupts The Best (1867)

The State is nothing else but this domination and exploitation regularised and systemised. We shall attempt to demonstrate it by examining the consequence of the government of the masses of the people by a minority, at first as intelligent and as devoted as you like, in an ideal State, founded on a free contract.

Suppose the government to be confined only to the best citizens. At first these citizens are privileged not by right, but by fact. They have been elected by the people because they are the most intelligent, clever, wise, and courageous and devoted. Taken from the mass of the citizens, who are regarded as all equal, they do not yet form a class apart, but a group of men privileged only by nature and for that reason singled ouit for election by the people. Their number is necessarily very limited, for in all times and countries the number of men endowed with qualities so remarkable that they automatically command the unanimous respect of a nation is, as experience teaches us, very small. Therefore, under pain of making a bad choice, the people will always be forced to choose its rulers from amongst them.

Here, then, is society divided into two categories, if not yet to say two classes, of which one, composed of the immense majority of the citizens, submits freely to the government of its elected leaders, the other, formed of a small number of privileged natures, recognised and accepted as such by the people, and charged by them to govern them. Dependent on popular election, they are at first distinguished from the mass of the citizens only by the very qualities which recommended them to their choice and are naturally, the most devoted and useful of all. They do not yet assume to themselves any privilege, any particular right, except that of exercising, insofar as the people wish it, the special functions with which they have been charged. For the rest, by their manner of life, by the conditions and means of their existence, they do not separate themselves in any way from all the others, so that a perfect equality continues to reign among all. Can this equality be long maintained? We claim that it cannot and nothing is easier to prive it.

Nothing is more dangerous for man’s private morality than the habit of command. The best man, the most intelligent, disinterested, generous, pure, will infallibly and always be spoiled at this trade. Two sentiments inherent in power never fail to produce this demoralisation; they are: contempt for the masses and the overestimation of one’s own merits.

«The masses» a man says to himself, «recognising their incapacity to govern on their own account, have elected me their chief. By that act they have publicly proclaimed their inferiority and my superiority. Among this crowd of men, recognising hardly any equals of myself, I am alone capable of directing public affairs. The people have need of me; they cannot do without my services, while I, on the contrary, can get along all right by myself; they, therefore, must obey me for their own security, and in condescending to obey them, I am doing them a good turn.»

Is there not something in all that to make a man lose his head and his heart as well, and become mad with pride? It is thus that power and the habit of command become for even the most intelligent and virtuous men, a source of aberration, both intellectual and moral.

Rebublication from Αnarchy Αrchives


Short URL: http://wp.me/pyR3u-arf

London Message to Syntagma

In this time of great confusion, political apathy and misinformation we are compelled to respond dynamically to issues that affect us all as citizens of the world, as human beings.

We EXPRESS OUR SOLIDARITY to Syntagma Square and, together, we call for the RE-ENFORCEMENT of the network of the Real Democracy Now groups across Europe.

1) We CONDEMN the propaganda of the major mainstream media who do not tell the truth about Greece, claiming that the violence was started by the protesters while there are numerous sources confirming that the Greek police act oppressively against the crowd, use prohibited tear gases, punish and beat protesters without reason, attack stores and arrest even those who do not participate in the protests. The crackdown of June 29th was in fact a chemical warfare against protesters.

We CONDEMN the actions of the Greek government: 1) The introduction of the IMF-EU-ECB Troika’s demands against the wishes of the Greek people. 2) The stance of the vice president of the government Theodoros Pagalos for calling the majority of the Greek people “crooks” while he openly declared that if instability continues the army should be called to protect the banks from the people. We wonder who will protect the people from the cannibalistic power of the banks.

Spain and Greece have been trapped within cultural stereotypes, cultivated by the mainstream mass media and people are led to believe that this economic mess has to do with our cultural habits. Of course we recognise our failure to identify the warnings in time, as before now we chose to ignore the problems and refused to see that we were being led into a destructive financial death-trap for the sake of private banks and global speculators. Hence, we call for the people to RISE UP and despise apathy and consumerism. It is time to take the future in our hands, ending the power of capitalism over our lives, both economically and politically

What we are experiencing, is the vicious application of a disastrous economic model in the EU, in the most undemocratic and provocative way while the political leaders do their best to keep the people misinformed and therefore easily manipulated. The current socio-political system aims to maximize the profit and socialize the cost.

2) We stand by the side of the SPANISH INDIGNADOS who were and always are a great influence and inspiration, by the FRENCH people and all those who go through difficult times, by the people of IRAN who fight against their oppressive regime, by the TUNISIANS and EGYPTIANS who showed the way to freedom, by the people of SYRIA, BAHRAIN, YEMEN, MOROCCO… the struggle is common.

3) We send our solidarity, also, to the people of CHILE who are struggling against the privatisation of schools and universities. During 2011 numerous student protests took place across the country, but the media kept silent about it. The Chilean people have a long history of fights against exploitation, one of the most notable being the fight against the brutal dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. Under neoliberal politics, only a few privileged will enjoy social benefits, the privatization of education will shatter the dreams of the entire youth and condemn future generations to illiteracy.

4) We believe in a global political system of EQUAL PARTICIPATION for all citizens in political life, which should be the dominant value of human society, instead of money, productivism and economism.

5) There is an English saying ‘to take the bull by both horns’. In response to the crisis, we now see both the politics of nationalism and European state-federalism rearing their ugly heads. Nationalism, however intended is divisive, racist, fascist even and therefore ultimately undemocratic. With global capital now dictating each country’s policies, the Treaty of Westphalia has run its course. At the same time, we REJECT any political union foisted on us by the European state as a solution to the crisis, which will only damage each country further by following the same FAILED neo-liberal / global capitalist-led model.

6) Instead, we will replace and transform these bankrupt institutions with democratic People’s Assemblies.

7) Let us now call for People’s Assemblies everywhere! To express our common, local sovereignty, the means to build a new society that supports people and planet, while ALSO forcing each nation to join as one, to take on the global hegemon. For only then, when global capital is superceded by people power will poverty, famine, war and planetary destruction come to an end.

ANOTHER WORLD IS POSSIBLE

I think I can change things.
I think I can help.
I know that together we can.
For peace, equality and freedom

Real Democracy Now – London International Assembly

The articlle is also available in Greek 


Short URL: http://j.mp/nj0aUV