[g8-sheffield] Good and bad protesters

atw againstthewar at totalserve.co.uk
Mon May 30 17:13:11 BST 2005

dh> Steve - sales of white bands currently stand at 3.5 million.

I don't know what you mean by a 'white band' or whether it is relevent
it has to what I said?

However I don't think it is necessary to have a hi degree political
conciousness to believe in direct action. All you need is a vague
awareness that the government is not interested in hearing or doing
what people want, or maybe the fact that demonstrations never change
anything or that those that are running the government completely mad.
I think millions of people know these things at some level even though
they may not have a clue what 'capitalism' means.

There are many examples of this but recently I would say non payment
of the Poll tax is perhaps the biggest example of people taking direct
action to change things. Millions were involved. However things like
the anti-roads protests have also recieved very wide support from the

If MPH have criticised direct action publicly then I think we have to
ask why. Why did they feel the need to say anything about these
actions at all? Why not just focus on what they're doing instead? I
don't see Dissent or other groups publicly decrying their demos.

Well we don't know for sure but I think we can make a pretty good
guess. The idea of co-option and divide and rule mentioned in that
Spinwatch article (http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/05/311469.html)
is probably at the core. It wouln't surprise me in the least to find
out that the reason MPH have condemned others efforts is because the
police have asked them to do so as a pre condition for the go ahead
for their demonstration. Or it could be another similar mechanism to
prompt them into doing so. Whatever the reason its is no indication
that supporters of MPH believe in the same thing.

The reason such demos are popular is because they're less risky, and
the reason they less risky is because they are sanctioned by the
state. Its also the reason they're never going to get very far.



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