The 3 things you can do to defeat the water charges

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There is massive opposition across the country to the government’s attempt to impose water charges on us. Not least because we already pay for water through our taxes.  This is simply yet another austerity tax.  We have put up with years of austerity, cutbacks and extra taxes – all imposed on us to pay off the gambling debts of bankers and financial speculators. Hundreds of thousands of people are now saying ‘No More!’.

People also realise that this is an attempt to prepare our water service for privatisation, which will ultimately end in multinational companies owning it, charging us exorbitant prices and making super profits.

But we don’t have to accept this new charge.  We CAN defeat it.  To achieve that, there are a few things which we will all have to do:
 

Futurism or the Future: Review of the Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics

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The proliferation of computerised surveillance and security systems across workplaces has had the effect that now, in offices across the world, workers’ toilet usage is continuously monitored. You swipe your ID card to get in and out, producing a data event with a time and duration, which is quietly recorded by some computer.
 
Upstairs, some horrendous bureaucrat ponders over all this data: How long does a shit take? How many shits is too many? Does she have a medical condition, or is she just slacking? Copropolitics: a new technology of discipline and a fresh form of indignity that was inconceivable as anything other than a cyberpunk nightmare (and a dull one at that) a couple of decades ago; the kind of technological revolution that no-one wanted, and nobody is particularly excited about, but which nonetheless happens.
 

Turnips, hammers & the square - why workplace occupations have faded.

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What if we build it and they don’t come? That was the experience of the left during the crisis - decades had been spent building organisations and a model of how crisis would create revolution, but when the crisis arrived the left discovered that the masses weren’t convinced. The expected pattern of crisis leading to small strikes and protests, then to mass strikes and riots and then perhaps to general strike and revolution didn’t flow as expected. Under that theory the radical left would at first be marginal but then as conditions drove class militancy to new heights, the workers disappointed by reformist politicians and union leaders, would move quickly to swell its ranks.
 
In 2008 and 2009 that was the expectation of the revolutionary left organisations across Europe and North America, but that cycle of growth never materialised. In 2011 revolts did break out, but not in the manner expected and so the left could only spectate and criticise. Beyond that the period of struggle from 2008-2014 suggests that there is less strength in building struggles around broad ‘bread & butter’ issues than we imagined and a suggestion that diversity proved more useful in sustaining progressive struggle.
 

The IRA and Rape Culture - “When The Violence Causes Silence We Must Be Mistaken”

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Growing up in West Belfast, as Maíria Cahill did, you are immediately introduced and submerged into a culture of republicanism and of the armed struggle. Murals, flags and gardens of remembrance make it impossible to escape. What is lurking in the shadows of these symbols and the shadows of local heroes is the clandestine sexual abuse that went on during those turbulent years – clandestine to the public but an open secret within the republican family.

Living in a community where Sinn Féin have an absolute political monopoly, it was incredibly brave of Maíria to waive her right to anonymity and challenge the conventional wisdom that surrounded her case – the conventional wisdom that the IRA was responsible for. What we have seen as result, is an attempt by Sinn Féin, as they quite often do, to make Maíria’s rape something it is not. They are trying to write this off as an attack on Gerry Adams and are actively adding to rape culture by implying that Maíria has made it all up for these ends.

 

Syrian Kurdistan takes a different route to the Arab Spring – a first hand experience- audio

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Zaher Baher of the Kurdistan Anarchists Forum spoke at the 2014 London Anarchist Bookfair about the two weeks he spent in Syrian Kurdistan in May 2014, looking at the experiences of self-management in the region, experiments that have become more widely discussed as the result of the defense of Kobane against ISIS. Zaher is also a member of Haringey Solidarity Group

 

Anarchist Eyewitness to self-management in Kurdish Syria / West Kurdistan by Workers Solidarity on Mixcloud

 

Anarchist Eyewitness to self-management in Kurdish Syria / West Kurdistan

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Zaher Baher of the Kurdistan Anarchists Forum spent two weeks in Syrian Kurdistan in May 2014, looking at the experiences of self-management in the region, experiments that have become more widely discussed as the result of the defense of Kobane against ISIS.  This account tells in some detail what he saw and what conclusions he draws.   Zaher is also a member of Haringey Solidarity Group and spoke at the 2014 London Anarchist Bookfair about his experiences.  This account was originally published as 'The experiment of West Kurdistan (Syrian Kurdistan) has proved that people can make changes'

Middle Men and Market Forces - An interview with Conor McCabe

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The following is an edited transcript of an interview cum dialogue with Conor McCabe, author of the 2011 book “Sins of the Father” on the economy of Ireland since independence and researcher on financial shenanigans and corporate misdeeds in the Republic. I keeping with the theme of this issue of IAR on the institutions of power in Ireland, we wanted to explore how money and market forces operate through the specific structures and class composition of Irish society.

 

 

Hope, Friendship and Surprise in the Zombie Time of Capitalism: An interview with Gustavo Esteva

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Gustavo Esteva is an independent writer and grassroots activist. He has been a central contributor to a wide range of Mexican, Latin American, and international nongovernmental organizations and solidarity networks, including the Universidad de la Tierra en Oaxaca and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation. The WSM's Tom Murray caught up with Gustavo at a recent public lecture at the Kimmage Development Centre to discuss hope, friendship and surprise in the zombie-time of capitalism, and how people are taking initiatives, reclaiming control of their lives and creating vibrant, autonomous alternatives here today.

Irish Anarchist Review Issue 10

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Welcome to the tenth instalment of the Irish Anarchist Review, published for the 2014 London Anarchist Bookfair.

Five years ago, the Irish Anarchist Review replaced Red and Black Revolution as the magazine of the Workers Solidarity Movement. It’s mission was to fill a vacuum in Irish radical circles, to be a publication that raised questions and provoked debate, rather than laying out blueprints for success, as had been the norm in the more theoretical work of the left. It was established at a time where a fightback was believed to be imminent, when the expectation was that as the (economic) beatings continued, morale would improve.

 
The intervening years produced a series of false starts. The big ICTU demonstrations in the infancy of the crisis proved to be safety valves for the expulsion of steam from the rank and file, and were tightly controlled by the bureaucracy. The Occupy phenomenon was a reaction against that type of protest, and it did release a wave of creative energy, but it’s structurelessness ultimately had the same effect, and that energy escaped into the ether. There have also been strikes and occupations, the Unlock Nama campaign, the campaign against household and water taxes (CAHWT) and a massive resurgence in the campaign for abortion access.

 

 

Fighting The Water Charge – Non-payment the only way to win

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Saturday last, 11th October, saw tens of thousands take to the streets of Dublin in a powerful, colourful and vibrant display of opposition to the Irish government’s attempts to impose water charges.

The numbers who turned out were so large and took everybody by surprise to such an extent that nobody – media, gardai or organisers – could give an accurate estimate of actual numbers.  Estimates varied from 30,000 to 100,000, but whatever the exact figure was it was clear that this was the start of something huge.  

It was an energising and invigorating protest to be part of.  From well before the start time, people were arriving in their droves at Parnell Square.  To see groups of people arriving in by bus from all over the city and from around the country was inspiring and should have a huge impact on the political confidence of all those who took part.

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