Solidarity Action in #Dortmund, #Germany for Arrestees in #Belarus

Enough is Enough!

The biggest protests in years took place in dictatorial Belarus. They were caused by a new law, forcing every who has not been working for at least 6 months in one year to pay a “tax”. With this “tax” of 180 €, the government wants to finance healthcare and education. The average income in Belarus is 200-300 €. Because of the protests, the dictator Lukaschenko promised to suspend this “tax” for another year. Still the protests are going on. It is not only about this new law, it is about the dismissal of Lukaschenko. The government took over 160 journalists, anarchists, politicians of the opposition and demonstrantors in custody or imposed a fine on them.Every day more people are facing repression.

dortmund25m

View original post 263 more words

The World Has Said “No” to Richard Spencer

Anti-Fascist News

Richard Spencer has always fought for a seat at the table. At least the edge of the table.

He entered the broad Conservative Movement in the mid-2000s not through the popular Neoconservative and evangelical hangers-on of the Bush Administration, but through the dissident wing to its right. Brought on as an Assistant Editor at the American Conservative after giving a racially charged speech on the case of Duke Lacrosse players accused of sexually assaulting a black sex worker, Spencer was open that even at Pat Buchanan’s home publication, he was the odd man out. Jokingly calling himself as a Nietzsche-con, he was already a subscriber to the “race realist” publication American Renaissance by the time he took the position and he spent his time fraternizing with dissident rightists like Pau Gottfried and Steve Sailer. He then walked through the fringes of the right, from Taki’s Magazine to his flagship…

View original post 1,979 more words

Insurrectionary Anarchy Organising for Attack! – AudioZine

59:59 -Two essays, Insurrectionary Anarchy Organising for Attack! (Text) and Without a Trace(Text), from issue #10 of Do or Die – MP3 – PDF – Archive – Torrent – YouTube “Insurrectionary anarchism is not an ideological solution to social problems, nor a commodity on the capitalist market of ideologies and opinions. Rather it is an […]

via Insurrectionary Anarchy Organising for Attack! – AudioZine — Resonance: An Anarchist Audio Distro

Russian police detain opposition leader, hundreds of protesters

By By Denis Pinchuk and Natalia Shurmina

Police detained hundreds of protesters across Russia on Sunday, including opposition leader Alexei Navalny, after thousands took to the streets to demonstrate against corruption and demand the resignation of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

The protests, reckoned to be the biggest since a wave of anti-Kremlin demonstrations in 2011/2012, come a year before a presidential election which Vladimir Putin is expected to contest, running for what would be a fourth term.

Opinion polls suggest the liberal opposition, which Navalny represents, have little chance of fielding a candidate capable of unseating Putin, who enjoys high ratings. But Navalny and his supporters hope to channel public discontent over official corruption to attract more support.

A Reuters reporter saw police detain Navalny, who hopes to run against Putin, as he walked along central Moscow’s Tverskaya Street with supporters, part of an unsanctioned rally as a police helicopter circled overhead.

Police put Navalny in a truck around which hundreds of protesters crowded, trying to open its doors.

“I’m happy that so many people came out (onto the streets) from the east (of the country) to Moscow,” Navalny said, moments before he was detained.

 The Kremlin said on Friday that plans for the central Moscow protest, which the city’s authorities had rejected, were an illegal provocation.

Grigory Okhotin, one of the founders of OVD Info, a human rights organization which monitors detentions, said around 600 people had been detained in Moscow on Sunday.

Police said around 7,000-8,000 people were on Tverskaya Street and surrounding areas by mid-afternoon and put the number of detentions by late afternoon at around 500.

As evening drew in, hundreds of riot police lined up on Manezh Square at the end of Tverskaya Street and drove protesters away from the Kremlin’s walls. Some opposition supporters on Manezh Square shouted “Putin is a thief” as tourists wandered nearby.

Navalny called the protests after publishing allegations that Medvedev, the prime minister and former president, had amassed a huge fortune that far outstripped his official salary.

Medvedev’s spokeswoman called the allegations “propagandistic attacks” unworthy of detailed comment and said they amounted to pre-election posturing by Navalny.

Elsewhere, at a rally in the far eastern city of Vladivostok, a Reuters reporter saw 30 people being detained after unfurling banners reading “The prime minister should answer”.

“I’ve come out (to protest) against corruption and want the authorities to answer the accusations in the Navalny film,” 17-year-old student Denis Korneev said at the Moscow protest.

“In many countries the government would have resigned over this.”

Witnesses told Reuters that four people were also detained at a rally in Yekaterinburg in the industrial Urals region.

On Yekaterinburg’s Labour Square protesters waved posters reading “We are the authorities here” while nationalists and supporters of the pro-Kremlin United Russia party looked on.

Local media reported that large protests also took place in other cities, including St Petersburg and Novosibirsk. State media broadly ignored Sunday’s protests.

Source:http://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-protests-idUSKBN16X0G8

What is Earth Hour, and why are the lights out?

By 

MARCH 25, 2017 Around the world, cities and towns are going dark for 60 minutes on Saturday evening to mark the 10th annual Earth Hour, part of a global effort to draw attention to climate change.

The initiative began in 2007 in Sydney, Australia as a publicity effort by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to draw attention to the impact of human-caused carbon dioxide emissions on the warming planet.

In 2017, iconic buildings in more than 172 countries will switch off their lights when the clock ticks around to 8:30 p.m. local time, say Earth Hour organizers. While the energy savings will be small in absolute terms, those participating in the grassroots efforts hope they will spur new attitudes toward conservation.

From the Eiffel Tower to Taipei 101 and the Empire State Building to the Acropolis, thousands of landmarks will switch off their lights in solidarity as individuals, communities, and organizations worldwide deliver on their potential to help change climate change, the planet’s biggest environmental challenge yet,” says a statement on earthhour.org.

The list of lights-out landmarks includes many of the world’s best known sky-scrapers and buildings, including the world’s tallest building (the Burj Khalifa in Dubai), London’s Big Ben and Houses of Parliament, Rome’s Colosseum, Istanbul’s Blue Mosque, Moscow’s Red Square, and the Pyramids of Egypt.

In 2016, more than 400 of the world’s most recognizable buildings took part in 178 country, says WWF.

“We started Earth Hour to make a statement. Never did we imagine that we would be writing a dramatic new story for climate action where each individual can help turn the page toward a sustainable, climate-resilient future for all,” said Siddarth Das, executive director of Earth Hour Global.

“In ten years, Earth Hour has helped protect seas in Russia and Argentina, raised funds for conservation projects in Southeast Asia and the Amazon, and even created a forest in Uganda,” he said. “None of this would have been possible without the force that binds us all together – our collective determination to protect the one planet we all share.”

Armchair activists are welcome, too. “People around the world can log onto earthhour.org/climateaction to donate five Facebook posts to Earth Hour and encourage their friends to be a part of local climate efforts,” says the site, which has also created a Facebook profile picture frame.

“Climate change is visible proof that our actions can have a ripple effect beyond physical borders. It is up to each of us to ensure the impact we create helps instead to improve the lives of those around us and elsewhere, at present and in the future,” added Das.

Source:http://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2017/0325/What-is-Earth-Hour-and-why-are-the-lights-out

The Failures of Fight for $15

By 

“The Fight for $15 started with just a few hundred fast food workers in New York City, striking for $15 an hour and union rights. Today, [they]’re an international movement in over 300 cities on six continents of fast-food workers, home health aides, child care teachers, airport workers, adjunct professors, retail employees – and underpaid workers everywhere.” This synopsis for the Fight for $15 movement comes from their About Me page on their official website. Since its inception, anarchists have debated the pros and cons of the movement and its goals.

Organized by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), New York Communities for Change, UnitedNY, and the Black Institute, their first strike ended up being the largest fast food strike in American history. Since then, they have continued to organize sectors of the workforce which have (until recently) been largely ignored. They have adopted “Alt-Labor” tactics such as alliances with other community organizations like Black Lives Matter, sit-ins, and solidarity strikes. With the call for “$15 and a union,” workers in these industries began to organize with their co-workers to collectively bargain for higher wages, better work conditions, and the right to unionize without retaliation. Of course, under the influence of statist labor in the form of the SEIU and other involved groups, much of the movement has become about legislative reform in the area of minimum wage laws.

This view is defended by some anarchists under the assumption that, even if it’s only a small reform, it can help people survive in a rigged capitalist market by giving them a living wage. But there’s only so much truth to that. Inflation would eventually make the gains of a higher minimum wage irrelevant, forcing workers into a cycle of continuously fighting for higher real wages. This game of cat-and-mouse would simply serve as a distraction from the labor movement’s true revolutionary potential, decreasing chances of potential employment for already marginalized people in the process. The industries involved in the Fight for $15 movement largely employ people of color. The companies in these industries often exploit their labor for profit and some can afford to pay them higher wages. However, what is true in some workplaces is not always necessarily consistent across the board.

Minimum wage laws have surprisingly racist origins. Their explicit aim was to decrease competition in the labor market, specifically for the benefit of white workers. In a market infested with bigotry, the only real competitive advantage black and brown folks had when applying for jobs was being paid less. When white workers realized they were losing job opportunities to these folks, they began fighting for minimum wage laws that reflected white pay standards. Many racist employers saw little advantage in hiring a person of color over a white person unless they could pay them less, so they didn’t hire them. According to one article:

“Our nation’s first minimum wage law, the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931, had racist motivation.

During its legislative debate, its congressional supporters made such statements as, “That contractor has cheap colored labor that he transports, and he puts them in cabins, and it is labor of that sort that is in competition with white labor throughout the country.”

During hearings, American Federation of Labor President William Green complained, “Colored labor is being sought to demoralize wage rates.””

The same remains true today with trans folks. They are already virtually unhireable in some less progressive areas. Taking away their right to accept lower paying jobs can jeopardize their survival or turn them towards more dangerous or illegal forms of work. When it comes to survival under capitalism, sometimes a low paying job is better than the alternative of no job at all, and minimum wage laws have the unintentional effect of limiting already marginalized people’s entry into the job market. Some unions have even seen the disadvantages of state-enforced minimum wage laws. In areas where Fight for $15 has made legislative gains, they have fought for their unions to be exempt from them in order to maintain workers’ jobs and give their members a competitive advantage! If some unions are asking for exemptions from minimum wage laws, the Fight for $15 movement’s call for a universal $15 minimum wage is clearly not something that all workers want.

In the tradition of the IWW and anarcho-syndicalism, I personally believe that workers know how to organize their particular workplaces better than anyone else. That means that while those in the Fight for $15 movement may see the need to push for a $15 wage for themselves and their co-workers, other workers in other workplaces may not want to collectively bargain for those particular demands. We need to respect these strategic differences if we wish to truly defend the rights of the working class to self-organize.

While the Fight for $15 movement has largely focused on achieving higher wages through the state, some workers have achieved their goals by bargaining directly with their employer. One example is the nursing home workers and hospital employees at UPMC (Pennsylvania’s largest private employer). This method is more consistent with the bottom-up approach traditionally favored by anarchists. But statists within Fight for $15 have criticized this approach and chosen to devote all efforts towards building the movement in areas where it seems most likely to make legislative gains.

This short-sighted approach means that the Fight for $15 movement has largely pulled out of red areas, including much of the South. Such tactics amount to abandoning working class people under the misguided assumption that Fight for $15 can organize better for workers than workers can organize for themselves. Apparently the call for “$15 and a union” isn’t serious unless it is a call for a state-enforced minimum wage. Moreover, the call for a union is seen as either secondary or only useful as a means of reaching the first goal. In reality, the existence of organized unions in these industries could potentially do much more to help those workers than a simple, short-term, state-sanctioned wage increase.

It’s time to stop pretending that the Fight for $15 movement hasn’t been corrupted by liberal reformism. It’s time to realize that Fight for $15 does not speak for all workers. It’s time to acknowledge that their narrow views on strategy only serve to abandon workers in areas where their strategy doesn’t work: despite the success of other strategies from movement participants.

We need to fight for workers’ right to unionize so that they can achieve higher wages through collectively bargaining with their employers. Finally, we need to take over organizing in areas where Fight for $15 has discontinued their efforts and reroute that energy into a new strategy to achieve $15 and a union for all employees. This time, let’s do it right.

Source:https://c4ss.org/content/48280

(Re) Making the case for hate crime laws in Trump’s America

March 15, 2017 Earlier this week a neighborhood in Southeast Portland was covered in spray-painted swastikas. Swastikas on cars, fences, trees, and sidewalks. It’s been part of a rash of similar graffiti in the metro area this winter, including “Kill niggers” and other racist scrawlings at Lake Oswego High School and a swastika with a […]

via (Re) Making the case for hate crime laws in Trump’s America — Watching the Wheels