Friday, April 15, 2011
Authority Smashers Tampa/FL Loose "Manifesto"
I have been a part of the Authority Smashers Collective for going on almost 3 years now and we have learned alot about the various strengths/weaknesses inherent in long distance online organizing,media production,and fundraising. Our collective's goals have been quite modest and sober but reality is what it is no matter how realistic you are. We have been receiving great advice on how to fundraise from veteran activists and we are planning a sustainer program and other tactics to get sustainable. The gathering of the collective's current active members for the Left Forum in NYC was a great live reunion and reminder of the physical distance we have had to overcome in this project. Local,small core groups with greater direct participation and accountability to one another working together on the project can tackle some of tactical issues with long distance collaboration---more people involved can hopefully further rotate tasks to avoid burnout and the developing of in-groups that end up doing all the work when chaos intervenes.
In a statement on our Authority Smashing! Hour Facebook page,collective member Charngchi "Chomskyan" Way put it best:
"Hi friends, for many reasons, internal and external, we are putting this project on pause for now. Thanks to everyone for all the support. We'll be back soon in another form, in a sustainable manner. In the meantime, we urge all of you to join or start local projects that attempts to smash forms of oppressive authority. Solidarity!" --Charngchi
Ron from Philly has started Deep Green Philly with a page under construction.
Deep Green Philly is a podcasting/news website focused on local and international environmentalism from a radical perspective
I am starting Authority Smashers Tampa to work on ASH-related projects and create a collective based on the same radical anti-authoritarian/anarchist principles from here in Florida.Black Cat Stoa will be a placeholder page for Authority Smashers Tampa until a completed official page is up.
In starting another AS collective,I would like to continue and even expand upon our anti-authoritarian consensus decsion making organizing principles and non-sectarian approach to anarchism with a strong focus on class struggle. I am a member of the IWW,so this will be a continuing wob friendly project. Also the focus on building a radical community,mutual aid,solidarity,organzing radical space,and radical analysis will be main goals. Aside from taking cue from basic affinity group organizing,I'd like to take a cue from our comrades at the No Borders Collective,I would also like to suggest these principles as placeholders(in no particular order) until final principles are agreed upon and posted by a collective:
a)Peoples' Global Action Hallmarks1.A very clear rejection of capitalism, imperialism and feudalism; all trade agreements, institutions and governments that promote destructive globalization.
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 capitalism.
5.An organisational philosophy based on decentralisation and autonomy.
b)the St Paul Principles:
1. our solidarity will be based on respect for a diversity of tactics and the
plans of other groups.
2. the actions and tactics used will be organized to maintain a separation of
time or space.
3. any debates or criticisms will stay internal to the movement, avoiding any
public or media denunciations of fellow activists and events.
4. we oppose any state repression of dissent, including surveillance,
infiltration, disruption and violence. we agree not to assist law enforcement
actions against activists and others.
c)NYMAA: Purposes of Existence
A. General Propaganda: To increase the visibility and spread of basic anarchist ideas and information among the general populace through a variety of means.
B. Social Struggles: To establish an anarchist presence in social struggles against oppression and towards freedom.
C. Building Blocks: To create the basis of an anarchist society by building federated socio-economic institutions that reject the illogic of capitalism and the state. This approach is traditionally called "dual power," and consists of production and distribution cooperatives, workers, and neighborhood councils and assemblies, communal housing and shelter, free schools, community/social centers, etc.
D. Coordination & Communication: To increase the level of joint activity, coordination, and face-to-face communication among already established anarchist and social justice organizations.
E. Social Community: To facilitate comradely interaction among anarchists through such means as social events and parties, printed material, classes, forums, discussions, workshops, and reading groups.
e)The RAAN and LAFF models are also an influence for me.
As an anarchist I will reassert that radical feminism is a given as well as the anti-racist,pro-queer,free love principles inherent or listed in above principles.
Since the AS Collective has been proportionately a collective of people of color(as well as women,queer,and disabled),I'd like to include certain APOC principles as well: http://www.peopleofcolororganize.com/organizing/antioppression-principles-practice/
I think these principles from this online revolutionary group can more fully apply in an anarchist context(and outside radical spaces) and serve as points of solidarity and intervention between activists and communities of all "stripes":
Again,we should oppose any form of white cultural chauvinism/"whiteness",white supremacy, or internalized racism in the anarchist movement. I find it troubling that groups have to organize into APOC and white allies when the anti-racism/privelege should be a given like our feminism and acceptance of our LGBTQ comrades and rejection of rigid gender roles.
I also suggest principles similar to these.
Any Florida anarchists and other anti-authoritarian radicals interested in strengthening a radical presence/community in Florida can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org