[matilda] PGA Hallmarks - an item for the 18th July meeting agenda?
dan at aktivix.org
Wed Jul 13 13:33:05 BST 2005
Good plan to put it on the agenda. Just to start the argument, there's
things that I disagree with. Don't know what others think.
1. Attacking capitalism is too easy. One definition of it -
"Capitalism has been defined in various ways. In common usage it refers
to an economic system in which all or most of the means of production
are privately owned and operated (commonly for profit), and where
investments, production, distribution, income, and prices are determined
largely in a "free market" rather than by centralized state control (as
in a command economy)." (Wikipedia)
If that's all capitalism means, I'm not against it. I'd rather the
means of production were privately owned than state-owned, for example.
The model of free software is excellent and refreshing, in that no-one
and everyone owns it. That probably can't work with my bike - I want to
keep it, it's mine, f*ck off! - but it shows its possible to get
beyond the state-private dichotomy.
This is semantics really, but then words are important! Markets and
trade can be good things. (Brambles cafe do good work for a start!)
Being against destructive globalisation is cool - but not being against
globalisation per se.
3. Confrontation / lobbying has no impact? How many people on this list
think change can only come about through confrontation, and lobbying
does nothing? That can't be everyone, can it? For example, I certainly
don't believe that withdrawing from lobbying is going to help stop
Burngreave being McRegenerated. I'm working on stuff that tries to show
how the policies being pushed through are pants - and I'd like to try
and persuade others of this. How will confrontation help? Equally,
though, having absolutely no time for Tesco's cynical attempts to fit
into the social exclusion agenda is obviously the way forward - but
shouldn't we take things on a case-by-case basis?
Plus, your case is helped a lot if its clear that you tried all avenues
before resorting to confrontation. E.g. maybe its time to have a go at
that bloody incinerator again... Dioxins are really, really f**king
evil. The thing should be shut down. If lobbying doesn't work...
4. I don't understand how a blanket call for direct action and civil
disobedience works. What does that mean? The rest of point 4 is
brilliant, particularly constructing local alternatives - that fits into
the Burngreave stuff really well...
5. Decentralisation and autonomy: better than the opposite, but it would
be good to spend some time talking about what this means.
E.g. Someone autonomously promoting Matilda on Indymedia recently. This
went against a collective (consensus) decision at a previous meeting.
Were they within their rights to do so, since they were acting
autonomously, or do we want people to abide by decisions reached by
consensus? What does autonomy mean in this context?
On a different point, I'm hoping there will be space in Matilda, over
time, to look over some of the questions that come from all of this.
And, as Marcos said, we must always 'walk asking'. Argument,
disagreement and discussion, wherever possible, should never stop us
from learning to trust one another, and from acting together.
Or something. :)
>I wonder if it would make sense to agree that the Matilda
>social centre would use the PGA Hallmarks as one of it's
>These are simple and clear:
> 1. A very clear rejection of capitalism, imperialism and
> feudalism; all trade agreements, institutions and
> governments that promote destructive globalisation.
> 2. We reject all forms and systems of domination and
> discrimination including, but not limited to,
> patriarchy, racism and religious fundamentalism of
> all creeds.
> We embrace the full dignity of all human beings.
> 3. A confrontational attitude, since we do not think
> that lobbying can have a major impact in such biased
> and undemocratic organisations, in which
> transnational capital is the only real policy-maker;
> 4. A call to direct action and civil disobedience,
> support for social movements' struggles, advocating
> forms of resistance which maximize respect for life
> and oppressed peoples' rights, as well as the
> construction of local alternatives to global
> 5. An organisational philosophy based on
> decentralisation and autonomy.
>Perhaps this could be an agenda item for the meeting on
>Monday 18th July?
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