The crisis is not a natural disaster that simply happens; the crisis is the outcome of the choices of all those who want to maintain this system, in which we are exploited, repressed and governed. Their proposals on how to come out of the crisis do not differ from suggestions on how the existing situation could be reinforced and take root. Our propositions can be nothing less than strikes and solidarity, occupations and sabotage, expropriations and mutual help… in order to create the world that we choose for ourselves, against all kinds of segregations and hierarchy.

-Assembly of the revolted in (the island of ) Salamina, (and the neighborhoods of) Perama, Keratsini, Nikaia, Koridallos, Piraeus

While the IMF meets in Washington, D.C. this weekend, Greece’s financial troubles have continued to deepen. Greek Prime Minister Papandreou chose the remote Aegean island of Kastelorizo on Friday to announce his government was to activate the IMF-EU “rescue” plan, effectively throwing the proletariat and lower middle classes in the country at the mercy of international financial giants. IMF loans always have nasty strings attached, rules that force the recipient to re-structure their economy along a neo-liberal, privatized, U.S. friendly model due to the influential U.S. position in the IMF.

The current situation in Greece has many similarities to the IMF crisis in Argentina in 2002 that sparked a nation-wide rebellion and created a of worker-run businesses in its wake. Add to this crisis the recent revelations that the Greek ruling class has been evading paying its share of taxes for years, and you have a country that is turning into a powder keg.

This is social war at its peak; this is the guarantee that the Greek standard of living will be crushed, and that a dictatorship of capital shall reign.

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LibcomA report on the working class struggles against austerity measures in Greece from Proles and Poor’s Credit Rating Agency aka TPTG a greek autonomous communist group.

In periods of crisis, such as the current period of overaccumulation crisis, capitalists use the politics of “public debt” in order to devise new ways to intensify exploitation. In contrast with capitalist upturns when the private debt is increased, downturns are characterized by the increase of the “public debt”. Private investment in state bonds ensures profits which are extracted from the direct and indirect taxation of the workers, aiming towards interest repayments, and leading, ultimately, to the reinforcement of the banking sector capital. Therefore, the “public debt”, contrary to what is usually said, provides help to private capital and, in this respect, should be counted in its profits.

Moreover, in the last 20 years, the “public debt” tripled in 20 out of 27 countries of EU because of massive expenditures for bailing out the financial sector. This is money that was not given through loans to (non-banking) private capital for productive investments. Furthermore, public borrowing was done and continues to be done on terms that exceed by far the average profit rate, making investments in state bonds far more profitable than investments for the creation of production units, and, all the more so, since this kind of investment is exempted from the risks of class struggle in the sites of production.

The global economic recession of the previous years, which is the most recent manifestation of the permanent crisis of reproduction of global capital in the last 35 years –a crisis interrupted only by temporary recoveries– inevitably affected domestic capitalist accumulation. However, apart from the consequences of the reduction of global economic activity to the exports of greek capital, especially in the shipping and the tourist sectors, it became also the peg for the revelation of the permanent crisis of exploitability and disciplining of the proletariat.

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occupyca – As our frequent readers probably know, Greece was racked by riots in December, 2008, after a 15-year-old boy was murdered by the police. These riots followed on a series of occupations, which tore through the education sector in 2006-7, spreading from universities to high schools. At the end of 2008, a major question was: would the insurrection spread from the students, youth, and the immigrants — that is, those systematically excluded or marginalized in the production process — to the unionized workforce of regular and semi-regular employees? For an analysis at the time, see The Glass Floor by Theorie Communiste, as well as other writings by TPTG and Blaumachen (available from libcom.org).

For a while, it seemed that the rioters would receive nothing more than repression for their troubles. A socialist government took power in the aftermath of the riots, wasting no time in cracking down on the  milieu. At the extreme, government forces continually violated the sanctity of the Exarchia district in Athens (Exarchia had been declared a police-free zone after students played a key role in bringing down a US-backed dictatorship in the mid-1970s). Greece was racked by bombing campaigns, both from the extreme left of the “Nuclei of Fire” and from the extreme right of Greek fascists, who attacked social centers and other movement strongholds.

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FREE CUNY WALK OUT

March 3, 2010

Sussex Reoccupied!

March 3, 2010

Students at Sussex released the following statement:

The management of our university has rejected all alternative plans proposed by the UCU, by the Student Advisors, by the Parents who use the crèche, and by various academic departments. We feel that taking this action is our only option to protect our education from cuts.

We oppose the authoritarian tactics employed by management, just as we oppose all cuts to public services. Whether we be students, workers or unemployed, we should not be made to pay for a funding crisis created by an irresponsible, outmoded, and defunct economic system.

NO CUTS ANYWHERE

THE UNIVERSITY IS A FACTORY: STRIKE, OCCUPY

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7-Day Weekend

February 9, 2010

Issue 1 of 7-Day Weekend, UCSC endless occupation

contents:

- Introduction: This is your life
– Students vs. prisoners?
– Occupation in Mexico, 1999-2000
– Too few jobs for too many people
– A message to the faculty
– The last remaining reason
– Kerr Hall: A personal reflection
– News briefs and upcoming events at UCSC

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http://afterthefallcommuniques.info/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/fall_logo_photos.jpg

This isn’t a Newspaper, This is Dynamite

We are excited to announce the publication of After the Fall: Communiques from Occupied California. Collecting the major statements from the recent wave of Occupations, it is being provided as a free gift to the movement.

A love letter to the insurgent students and workers on California campuses, After the Fall will be released on Valentine’s Day and is intended to spark excitement and discussion. We encourage students and others to use After the Fall to mobilize forces ahead of the March 4th offensive .

- 44 tabloid pages of communiques, texts and photos from across the state
– includes a map, timeline and pullout poster

We will provide a bundle to any interested groups for the price of postage. Contact us at paper(at)afterthefallcommuniques(dot)info

& if you are interested in buying into the initial print run in order to receive many bundles please contact us.

stay tuned for additional details

March 4th Day of Action

January 20, 2010

take the city

In solidarity with the call for actions on March 4th across California for occupations and escalation in response to fee hikes and California’s war on youth (from police attacks on students in November to the police murder of Oscar Grant), there is a nationwide call for actions in Solidarity:

“As people throughout the country struggle under the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, public education from pre-K to higher and adult education is threatened by budget cuts, layoffs, privatization, tuition and fee increases, and other attacks. Budget cuts degrade the quality of public education by decreasing student services and increasing class size, while tuition hikes and layoffs force the cost of the recession onto students and teachers and off of the financial institutions that caused the recession in the first place. Non-unionized charter schools threaten to divide, weaken and privatize the public school system and damage teachers’ unions, which are needed now more than ever. More and more students are going deep into debt to finance their education, while high unemployment forces many students and youth to join the military to receive a higher education. And all of the attacks described above have hit working people and people of color the hardest.

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Our group convenes this week and begins with a discussion and celebration of the latest events from comrades in the West and the possibility of further accelerations of struggle in our own vicinity. We respond to a series of questions posed by a Greek bourgeois newspaper concerning their year of insurrection and revolt. Our attention then turns to our weekly collective study. This week we prepare to continue reading chapter three.

We review, recite and observe with a particular emphasis: the capital process is masked by its constant transformations into concrete particular modes of existence; the commodity’s dual aspects are masked by their existence in the equivalent and relative forms as only a use-value for the reciever and only an exchange value for the transmitter; the labor and marginal theory of value of the political economist is a mask that freezes time as opposed to the historically dynamic abstract and socially necessary labor time at the root of the value of products; capital’s money-form as wages for the proletariat mask their role in the circulation of variable capital as drafts for means of subsistence as opposed to money as disposition for productive consumption, for the capitalist; convention, culture and juridical activity mask the productive-historical factors that are behind them leading to bizaare rituals and value systems; markets mask the myriad shifts in supply and demand for countless productive activities which we lose track of and therefore control over, passively deferring to the inexorable spiral of self-valorization; exchange masks the intentions and concrete conditions of production; etc.
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From the imaginary committee

Here is a shout out to fellow west coast conspirators
for some good ol’ fashion insurrection!
Its a time of crisis,
but it sure don’t look like one yet!

So get going and bring it on,
because we are the crisis!
This is a call for a competitive occupation
to get things started:
this will be called the Game.
And this game never fucking ends!

Some passing thoughts on the Berkeley and Santa Cruz occupations, from someone who was there briefly

It is no great secret that the terminal crisis of capitalism is before our eyes: the welfare state, the bitter product of two world wars, the child of Hitler and Noske, wherein a certain social safety net was provided for a measure of social peace, is in the process of being forcibly liquidated by the exigencies of an incresingly bankrupt social system. This much is evident to all those who have a basic thinking capacity. And thus, those who are protesting for a defense of this transient historical form will find nothing here of value, nor even anything here addressed to them. Such people can protest all day for a return to the glory days they imagine, but since these halcyon times never existed anyways, one can see they will certainly have no success now. Rather we address ourselves to those who believe in any fashion in the “terminus of student life”; but not of course to open something so worthless as a literary polemic or discussion, nor to presume to give prescriptions or orders — all we do here is attempt a “generalization of insinuation.” For, to be right means nothing, what is important is acting in consequence.

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Stories at NYC IMC / NYU News / New School Free Press / More photos

At night on 19 Nov., approximately 75 (non)students from the New School, NYU, CUNY, and other university-factories in NYC marched from Washington to Union Squares and back in a gesture of solidarity with the wave of occupations that has swept the University of California system in response to the 32% tuition hike, budget cuts, and the reproduction of students as consumer-commodities ready to work for spectacle-subjects. The march saw crazy hooligans hanging banners off of buildings; masked rogues scattering trashcans, newspaper boxes and plastic barricades across Fifth Avenue; sexy dancing throughout the streets an attempted occupation of a Parsons art party as well as the good ol’ 65 5th ave. Unfortunately, the fun ended when cops managed to pierce the motley mob, arresting two after beating them on the sidewalk. This was caught on film: watch here

The two arrested were taken to the 6th Precint in the West Village, where much of the crowd ended up at the end of the night, dancing and singing out front, distributing pamphlets and glow sticks, and remaining until the two walked free.

Until Next Time…

DEMAND NOTHING
OCCUPY EVERYTHING

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From the AKpress Blog:

I recently posted Research & Destroy’s Communiqué from an Absent Future on this blog. The manifesto, circulated during the recent University of California walkout, has been generating a lot of online discussion.

I thought it might be useful to try to continue that discussion in a more, uh, “organized” manner…one that would free it from the sort of tit-for-tat exchanges that happen in listserv debates and within the confines of blog/Facebook comment boxes (though, of course, I encourage comments to this post).

I talked to one of the Communiqué’s authors, and to Brian Holmes (who wrote, I thought, a very interesting response to the manifesto), and to folks involved with the New School occupation. Together, we came up with three questions, based on reservations about and critiques of the Communiqué we’d seen circulated online.

So, here’s how the discussion will happen:

Round One, below, will be three sets of responses to the questions we came up with: one a collective response from Research and Destroy, one a collective response from Dead Labor (the aforementioned New School occupiers), and an individual response from Brian Holmes (who is one of the organizers of the “Continental Drift Seminar”).

Round Two, which will be posted in a week or two, will be everyone’s responses to the first round of responses.

These are the three questions folks were asked to answer:

1) Whaddya mean the management class is being proletarianized!?! Isn’t this somehow an insult/misrecognition regarding the REAL proletariat?

2) Does addressing the university student as the potential revolutionary subject get us closer to revolution? How? How not?

3) What would a non-reformist goal for a university be, if one exists?

Let the games begin! [Oh, by the way, it's a long post. If you prefer a printable PDF, click here.]

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Occupy Everything

To the occupiers of UCSC,

We fellow workers and students from New York City stand in solidarity with those at UC Santa Cruz who have occupied their university against the cuts and austerity measures forced on them by capital and its bureaucrats.

Public services are some of the first gains to be rescinded when capital desperately thrashes out in an effort to valorize itself. As workers have been crowded out of their jobs, and as the failure of various financial machinations to alleviate this crisis has become clear, more have been heading back to school.  They have been burying their heads under even more debt with the hope of riding out the job scarcity and making themselves more attractive to employers.

As California’s universities reduce their enrollment by tens of thousands and simultaneously increase student fees and tuition, they are giving us a clear message: there is no escape from this turbulence.

So lets meet it head on.

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Tuesday 19 May 2009

Several people were injured during violent clashes between anti-globalisation protestors and security forces on Tuesday in Turin, northern Italy, during a G8 meeting on universities.

The troubles lasted for an hour after a number of the 3,000 demonstrators tried to force their way through a police blockade to access the architecture faculty building where 40 university deans from around the world were meeting.

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From The Thing –  the spring occupation tournament challenge:

Beautiful and hilarious banners (30pts) [1,2]
Crazy barricades and tons of chains (30pts)
Transform the uses of the space (10pts)
Dramatic rooftop reading of radical text (20pts) [1, txt]
Wild, inventive chants (30pts)
Solidarity means attack! (50pts) [1,2]
Total: 170pts

Lessons Learned
[ + ] Banners: DAMN THESE KIDS ARE CLEVER.
[ + ] Outside support is key. That was badass: [1,2,3]
[ - ] Despite their toughness, more was needed!
[ - ] Don’t expect your social role to lessen police reaction.
[ + ] You have to respond to “repression” with action, not self-victimization and whining.

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