Independent Media

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Occupy Everything! Reflections On Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere

Penned after the 2010 European student unrest and before what is now commonly referred to as the “Arab spring” began to escalate, BBC Newsnight economist Paul Mason’s “20 Reasons Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere” sought to establish an understanding of the motivations behind these globally disparate, yet somehow connected struggles.

What roles do the “graduate with no future,” the “digital native” or the “remainder of capital” play in the current wave of unrest? What are the ideas, ideologies, motivations or demands driving these movements? How is struggle organized and coordinated in the age of memetic politics and viral ad campaigns?

This collection of essays (edited by Alessio Lunghi & Seth Wheeler) seeks to further explore Paul Mason’s original 20 Reasons in an attempt to better understand our turbulent present.

GurgaonWorkersNews - Newsletter 47 (February 2012)

Gurgaon in the industrial belt of Delhi is presented as the shining India, a symbol of capitalist success promising a better life for everyone behind the gateway of development. At a first glance the office towers and shopping malls reflect this chimera and even the facades of the garment factories look like three star hotels. Behind the facade, behind the factory walls and in the side streets of the industrial areas thousands of workers keep the rat-race going, producing cars and scooters for the middle-waged classes which end up in the traffic jam on the new highway between Delhi and Gurgaon. Thousands of young proletarianised post-graduates lose time, energy and academic aspirations on night-shifts in call centres, selling loan schemes to working-class people in the US or pre-paid electricity schemes to the poor in the UK. Next door, thousands of rural-migrant workers up-rooted by the rural crisis stitch and sew for export, competing with their angry brothers and sisters in Bangladesh, China or Vietnam. And the rat-race will not stop; on the outskirts of Gurgaon, new industrial zones turn soil into over-capacities. The following newsletter documents some of the developments in and around this miserable boom region.

Little Black Cart Starts a Publishing Wing
LBC Books

LBC Books is the new publishing arm of Little Black Cart distribution. We will be publishing at least one new book a month and will be helping a variety of other publishing groups with their material. We imagine a diverse and prolific publishing space of ideas, history, action, and polemics.

Rebel Studies Library Opens in Belarus

Rebel Studies Library is the first alternative non-commercial volunteer-based antiauthoritan diy library in the belarussian cultural zone (founded 05.12.2011). We provide free and open, non-commercial public space for reading books (in english, russian, ukrainian, belarussian, german, polish languages), watching movies and discussions. You don't pay money for using books and watching movies. Right now, we have about 400 books of relevant to the contemporary world literature (Fiction, Cinema, Theatre, Religion, Philosophy, Psychology).

The Housing Monster a new illustrated manifesto
Prole.info

“Looking for a place to dwell? Or even for an entirely new world to live in? But maybe you’re afraid radical theory is boring? Then The Housing Monster is the book for you. The author of the now classic Abolish Restaurants has come to grips with another vital issue: the housing question. Class analysis + a critique of daily life + uncensored innovative graphics + more... Enjoy!” —Gilles Dauvé

The Housing Monster takes one seemingly simple everyday thing—a house—and looks at the social relations that surround and determine it. Starting with the construction site and the physical building of houses, the book slowly builds and links more and more issues together: from gentrification and city politics to gender roles and identity politics, from subcontracting and speculation to union contracts and negotiation, from intensely personal thoughts and interactions to large-scale political and economic forces. What starts as a look at housing questions, broadens into a critique of capitalism as a whole.

Legacies of Tactical Media
Eric Kluitenberg

Tactical Media employ the ‘tactics of the weak’ to operate on the terrain of strategic power by means of ‘any media necessary’. Once the rather exclusive practice of politically engaged artists and activists, the tactical appropriations of media tools and distribution infrastructures by the disenfranchised and the disgruntled have moved from the margins to centre stage. The explosive growth of mass participation in self-mediation incountless blogs, video sharing platforms, micro-blog ging, social networking has created an unprecedented complexity in the info-sphere.

While this frenzy of media activity has been heralded as the catalyst of the new democratisation movements in North-Africa and the Middle-East, the anti-austerity/precarity movements in Southern Europe and the UK, and the recent #occupy movements in the US and Northern Europe, its increasingly intransparent complexity combined with the post 9/11 ‘crash of symbols’ has thrown its political efficacy into question. The demise of WikiLeaks as the crown jewel of on-line whistle-blowing has added to a thoroughly opaque picture.

More than ever tactical media operators require effective instruments to the create tactical cartographies they need to navigate the hybrid realities they are immersed in. This notebook traces the legacies of tactical media to begin creating these hybrid cartographies.

The Fight for "Real Democracy"
Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri

Demonstrations under the banner of Occupy Wall Street resonate with so
many people not only because they give voice to a widespread sense of
economic injustice but also, and perhaps more important, because they
express political grievances and aspirations. As protests have spread
from Lower Manhattan to cities and towns across the country, they have
made clear that indignation against corporate greed and economic
inequality is real and deep. But at least equally important is the
protest against the lack -- or failure -- of political representation.
It is not so much a question of whether this or that politician, or this
or that party, is ineffective or corrupt (although that, too, is true)
but whether the representational political system more generally is
inadequate. This protest movement could, and perhaps must, transform
into a genuine, democratic constituent process.

Submission Call #8
Grassroots Modernism- movement for today's tomorrow.

We hear of rigorously pedestrian, joyful projects.
We hear of projects,we hear of movements.
Rumor has it that they are adamant. Present and grounded. Utopian.
Rumor has it that they are creative and common and critically minded, and that they can blow our minds.
Rumor has it that while the conditions can only be local, the ideals can find international support.

We are smart as hell, queer and quotidian. Just like the neighbors.
Its movement time again.

Anarchism in Indonesia

Can you tell us about the history of anarchism in Indonesia?

MT: As far as I know from my friends' stories and from what I’ve learned, the origin of anarchism in Indonesia came together with the arrival of punk music around 1998. At that time anarchy was synonymous with punk and some people in that community began to delve deeper into anarchic ideology and values. Since that time anarchist discourse began to develop amongst individuals or collectives in the punk / hardcore community, and later to a broader range of groups such as activists, students, workers; essentially reaching a wider public with different backgrounds.

Along with the spread of anarchic discourse, many discussions on this topic began to occur, and anarchy began to be debated, analysed and criticized more deeply (and this process continues until today, now with a wider arena of different analyses). The next step was to bring it into praxis, for instance forming collectives with anarchic principals and values (decentralized, non-hierarchical & consensus). Despite the many problems these collectives faced, collective models like this could be seen as something different, a counter to the model of groups which always seek to dominate (both in the political sphere and the non-political) through their hierarchical, centralist, and authoritarian forms or structures.

Actions such as Food Not Bombs can be regarded as one of the early forms of direct action emerging from an anarchic praxis here, along with producing zines and other publication such as newsletter, pamphlets, etc. At first the themes and issues of zines were mostly about the punk / hardcore surroundings, but as time went on and the process developed, more varied themes and issues were presented such as feminism, anarchy values, anti-capitalism, global & social resistance, varients of anarchism, environmental and animal movements, political news , and others. The progress of anarchy is also helped by the increasing levels of Internet access; internet media are used by our friends to disseminate information about anarchist discourse.

"Piracy, Control Practices, and Alternatives"
Alex Galloway, with Pavlos Hatzopoulos and Thanasis Priftis

[From "Piracy as activism" special issue - http://www.re-public.gr/en/]

P.H. - T.P.: With what types of practices would you relate the concept
of piracy in networks? Is it problematic, from a critical standpoint,
to confine piracy to file-sharing?

Alexander Galloway: The pirates are on the rise. With their black
markets and black hats, pirates commandeer ships and copy DVDs. They
crack software systems and resell them under the counter. At the same
time immaterial goods proliferate in file-sharing networks, many
thousands labor away on their contributions to open source projects,
and millions more labor away in online games.

So perhaps to begin one might make a basic distinction between piracy
and the kind of collaborative sharing we associate with culture and
community. In a strict sense piracy is a form of commerce, illicit to
be sure, but commerce nonetheless. Something is stolen and resold via
the black market. Pirates are above all businessmen. Contrast this
with the anti-market activity of sharing, borrowing, or stealing. The
continuum is broad here-for example one is free to endorse sharing
while rejecting stealing-yet it is clear that such activities are
not black-market activities in any traditional sense. In fact I
would guess that very little real piracy takes place in file sharing
networks. It's mostly sharing, borrowing or stealing.

I include stealing here simply to appease the right. I personally have
very little against these kinds of activities and find it difficult
to label them "stealing" in any real sense of the word. In fact there
are lots of cases in which borrowing or even stealing is justified,
particularly in today's economy in which so much of human life is
stolen and debased by commercial and state interests. Reverse stealing
is often a necessity.

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