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Autonomous Action Radio Program.. ‘THIS IS NOT FAKE’..

in full show

 THE SHOW IN TEXT

Franklin Lopez sub.media has gone to Puerto Rico where he is from to help his family and  the community clean up after Hurricane Maria

In Puerto Rico, a humanitarian catastrophe continues to unfold 12 day after Hurricane Maria struck the island. Over the weekend, the Pentagon said the percentage of Puerto Rico’s 3.5 million residents without access to clean drinking water rose to 55 percent. Only 5 percent of the island has electricity, while food and fuel remain scarce and about half of the island’s roads are impassable. Continue reading Autonomous Action Radio Program.. ‘THIS IS NOT FAKE’..

Catalan General Strike 3 Oct.. updating translations . Against Repression.For Civil Rights

see previous  Catalan Referendum Wins.  Main Unions and ANC join General Strike Tuesday    90% YES despite Spanish Police attacks.    844 injured by 10pm shared with thanks from La Directa, Indymedia Barcelona, El Periodico, Vilaweb, Agencia UO, etcImage result for vaga general catalunya

The CGT anarchist union called the General Strike against repression and for Civil Rights, which has now been endorsed by the ‘Table for Democracy’  including all the major Trade Unions and civil Organisations.The ongoing traffic situation in Tarragona province was described as ‘chaotic’ at 10.00am

The Independence Referendum has morphed into a mass rebellion against the neo-fascist central government of thugs and thieves, and is rapidly spreading out of Catalonia around the Spanish State.

Here we try to inform you of minute by minute events with some rough quick translations from the alternative media


 

General Strike against Repression and for Human Rights. Tuesday 3rd Oct 2017

to be updated ..translator went to the demo

21.00

The King’s Speech.. by his Magnificent  Majesty Felipe

The new King came on the telly but instead of acting royal he praised the neo-fascist repression of the PP regime and accused the Catalans of all kinds of shit. Foolish Felipe missed his one opportunity to reunite Spain by ordering the occupying Spanish police thugs home, as his father might have done.

Instead he insulted and  branded all Catalans as living in illegality by going against the Constitution. But of course the Spanish monarchy itself is totally illegal, having been APPOINTED BY A FASCIST DICTATOR who illegally destroyed the 2nd Spanish Republic and murdered hundreds of thousands.

From here the Royal Speech looks like another spectacular own goal.

16.00

19

Spanish police move towards the demonstration without their official uniforms. Be aware!

SUMMARY OF THE SITUATION AT THIS TIME

– Massive protests against the police action of 1-O.

– The PSOE (‘ex socialists’ asks to reproach Sáenz de Santamaría for the police violence.

-Though some big firms are trying o stay open there has been massive an unprecedented support for the strike in all sectors.

-Solidarity demonstrations have been held across the Spanish State and some in Europe. But the EU and various States and Establishment media, including the BBC have come out against Catalonia.

-The main theme of people’s anger seems to have extended from demanding Independence to expelling imported brutal Spanish police and demanding civil  and work rights.

– The demonstration is concentrated all the way from the Plaza Universitat and down Via Laietana, moving in the direction Parlament de Catalunya. Although there are also many huge concentrations at different points in Catalonia.

– Barcelona is also without public transport until 17:00 hours. The only 25% and onl till 20.00 Mobility is not guaranteed in the Catalan capital. Public transport in Tarragona and Girona has also been nearly paralysed by the numerous traffic blockades and mass picketing of motorways.Spanish National Police & Guardia Civil are now forces of occupation in Catalunya.

– The PP says  it will not now apply article 155, Direct Rule over Catlunya because of the lack of political support, but it already has done on a de facto basis..

14:49

The adhesion to the general stoppage by the Barcelona City Council has resulted in the suspension of all institutional acts and the convocation of political bodies, as well as the closure of equipment and services not essential to the functioning of the city. Thus, they have not opened the public civic centers, libraries, play centers, centers of old people, family spaces, equipment of the Institute Sports Barcelona (IBE), museums, theaters and centers of art of public ownership.Image result for vaga general catalunya
demonstrators  advised any  strike breakers to close

80% of the more than 10,000 workers of the Barcelona City Council and their entities and companies are not working on Tuesday, after the council of the Catalan capital has joined the “national strike,” according to the institution. The same sources have indicated that at the moment they do not know how many of these workers have supported the general strike called by the General Confederation of Labor (CGT),  the mayor Ada Colau decreed minimum services in the essential services that the City council of Barcelona.

14:34

At 13.10 consumption in the whole peninsular electrical system has been about 1,000 MW lower than last Tuesday, where economic activity was the usual, and not like today that is marked by the general strike called in Catalonia. This difference would be equivalent to stopping a nuclear power plant.

13:47

Click here to see the traffic in the Catalan capital. Not much traffic but heavy delays…Clica aquí

2:00 pm

Thousands of people have entered the Parc de la Ciutadella in Barcelona and are concentrated in front of the Parliament of Catalonia. The firefighters are in the front row and the Mossos d’Esquadra protect the building. Finally, Universities for the Republic and the Committees in Defense of the Referendum have summoned.
Parliament of Catalonia / Víctor Yustres

13.25 h.

In Sabadell there is one of the most massive mobilizations that are remembered in the city, according to the local police, there are 25,000 people. The demonstration came out of the Macià Axis about an hour ago and will end before the City Hall. Posters of “I was in our home”, referring to the polling station where the concentrated people managed to push the National Police back.
Mass mobilization in Sabadell / Emma Giné

13.05 h.

The pickets manage to close several establishments of Mercadona: in Tarragona, Terrassa, Salt, Vic, some neighborhoods of Barcelona and Balaguer, with tractors, among others.
The tractors have managed to close the Mercadona de Balaguer

12.52 h.

In Valls the accesses to the Industrial Estate  have been cut at dawn.  About 100 tractors from all of the Alt Camp have concentrated on the Cooperativa Agrícola de Valls to organize more actions during the rest of the day. In the morning, news pickets have closed the supermarkets Aldi, Lidl, Mercadona and Carrefour, while the small business have joined massively the Strike call. At 12 noon there was a crowded concentration on the square  with the support of a tractor .
/Elisenda Trilla

12:45

The multitudinous demonstration in the square of Universitat of Barcelona makes the zone impassable. Torrents of students come on foot from Diagonal and other city campuses. A few hundred adults have joined them along the way. They sing slogans against violence and police repression. In fact, the concentration overflows the square, fills the Gran Via beyond Roger de Llúria (towards Besòs)

12.40 h.

Dozens of tractors start to leave the Sucre de Vic car park towards the confluence between the C-17 with the C-25, the transverse area, at the height of Gurb.
/ Dolors Pena

 

Parlament de Catalunya / Víctor Yustres

13.25 h. 

 

The Tractor Army ready to intervene/ Dolors Pena

12.30  Girona, a city of only 98,000

Mass picket Oct 3rd already at 11.00 am at Police HQ in Via Laietana, Barcelona
12.15
In the city of Tarragona, the first pickets began early in the morning, with cuts on the highway and main accesses to the city. The call for concentration has brought together thousands of people who have protested before the Subdelegation of the Spanish government. Finally, the march has followed and passed El Crte Ingles and a Mercadona, which had blinds down. Backing the strike is practically total except for some chains such as Mercadona.
La rambla de Lluís Companys de Tarragona plena a vessar / Comitè en Defensa del Referèndum i l’Autodeterminació a Tarragona

Catalan Referendum Wins. 90% YES despite Spanish Police attacks. 844 injured by 8pm

THIS IS WHAT THE SPANISH POLICE ARE DOING AGAINST PEACEFUL CATALAN PROTESTERS THAT WANT TO VOTE

FINAL RESULT valid votes> 90% YES for a Republic with 2.020.144 votes.        45.586 voted NO with 20.129 voting blank        400 of the 2315 voting stations were closed, 93 of them by the Spanish police.       General Strike Tuesday.       844 casualties.      Independence to be Declaredlate news: Early results predict at least 80% want Independence which will be declared unilaterally as promised. At least 2 million may have voted despite everything. General Strike called for Tues.

The Catalan BLOODY SUNDAY

The number of registered injured by the Spanish police has now risen to 844 people at 10.30pm (GMT + 1)

 late news: A platform which includes the majority ‘socialist’ UGT and ‘communist’ CCOO trade unions plus the ANC and Omnium have now backed the  General Strike Tuesday 3rd, called by the anarchist CGT.  see also:

  • Julian Assange The images Madrid feared emerged from its assault on Catalonia’s polling stations; Voters chant “I will vote!” (“votarem”)

     

    Franco’s military police let loose on peaceful voters in Barcelona

     

    Voting continues peacefully in the vast majority of polling stations where the police have not yet arrived due to the massive turnout. Where they have shown up extreme violence has been used against passive resistance and banned plastic bullets have been fired

    Over 1130 polling stations were already occupied  at 6.00am (not 163 as  reported by the BBC)Escola Univers de Gràcia amb centenars de persones. Foto: Martí Urgell

80 vanloads of  Franco’s paramilitary Guardia Civil  emerged from their HQ in the docks and charged against  a total of 93 polling stations by 5.00pm according to their own figures,( but there are 2315 stations ) ´.

The Spanish police had injured over 350 people by 2pm,  including small children and old folks. But voting was going ahead normally in over 1000 other stations. BY 8-00PM WHEN THE POLLS CLOSED THE FIGURE HAD RISEN TO 761 INJURED, 12 OF THEM POLICE.. *Dept of Health.

A man is being operated on for a plastic bullet in the eye, though they are legally banned in Catalonia.

Another appeared dead but was successfully reanimated. A woman volunteer had her fingers broken on her left hand, one by one, and her clothes torn open. etc. etc.

A fascist march is continuing around Barcelona, attacking people and destroying equipment, escorted by  Franco’s  Guardia Civil military police..

Barca football club cancelled their match against Las Palmas but the League refused so it was played behind closed doors.  They won 3-0.

In some cases the riot police were successfully resisted and in others the ballot boxes could nor be found during the police raids. see video

The Spanish leaders have made statements praising the police actions and the Spanish media is showing a highly censored version of events.

The Spanish Guardia Civil are unreformed from the Franco Dictatorship and the disgraceful PP govt has survived multiple scandals in the last 5 years getting support by the fascist tactic of whipping up anti Catalan hysteria. Many Spanish now believe Catalans need to be severely repressed.



EARLIER

Thousands of people  had gathered in the rain from 5.00 am to protect the referendum schools.

Voting boxes and papers were smuggled in without problems.

It has been announced that when polling stations are closed down you can now vote in any other, checking your ID number.

A last survey endorsed by Julian Assange predicted an 83% vote of Yes for independence.

Police have invaded and occupied the Catalan Government communications center where counting of votes might take place.

No significant attacks on Saturday night by anti referendum forces. Their final demo attracted 5,000 in Barcelona, receiving similar media coverage to the over 1 million strong pro independence demos. Continue reading Catalan Referendum Wins. 90% YES despite Spanish Police attacks. 844 injured by 8pm

‘Spain’ accuses 100,000 Catalans of Sedition.. Schools on Strike.. Universities Occupied

Massive Strikes of Catalan university and high school students to defend the 1-Oct  Referendum

see also latest 28/09 Catalans begin Occupying 2702 Polling Stations./ Google ordered to Delete Voting App

School students block main highways in Barcelona  27 /09/17


 Student unions caledl for a mobilization from the classrooms between Wednesday and Friday.

Students are expected to block roads, occupy buildings and are supported by the teachers, and left wing unions. the State prosecutors sent warnings that teachers and parents will be held responsible for any damage.

The Student Union also convened a general strike at High Schools on Wednesday 27, and urged students to join the demonstrations planned at noon.

Representants d'Universitats per la República, en roda de premsa (ACN)
Representatives of platform ‘Universities for a Republic’, at a press conference (ACN)

The unitary platform “Universities for the Republic” has called a two-day strike in Catalan universities – Thursday, 28, and Friday, 29 – to denounce what they consider “the judicial and police prosecution we suffer from the Spanish State and the hidden state of emergency that has been installed in Catalonia “.


The anarchist General Confederation of Workers (CGT) of Catalonia and various smaller unions have presented a notice of call for a general strike from wed Oct 3rd. see here https://thefreeonline.wordpress.com/…/catalan-referendum-c…/ ….


Catalan Police have been ordered by the Central Govt to seal off the over 2000 polling stations before Sunday and charge those responsible for allowing them, many of them school principles.

5000 of these will hardly be enough to stop the Catalan referendum

The local police have neither the capacity nor the will to break up the expected mass pickets, and National and paramilitary forces are being deployed.

The Student Platform spokesman, Jordi Vives, has demanded that next Sunday, he can vote.“That on October 1 the referendum can be held in full normality in order to start the path to the constituent process.”

Julian Assange spoke via internet outside the University Occupation in Barcelona


The students have confirmed that they will keep up the occupation of the historic building of the University of Barcelona to make it a meeting point for the people mobilized.The Lleida and Girona Universities are also permanently occupied Continue reading ‘Spain’ accuses 100,000 Catalans of Sedition.. Schools on Strike.. Universities Occupied

Catalonia Revolution: Hundreds of Thousands block and defy Military police Repression

 Yesterday 20th Sept 2017 was a key day in Catalonia as thousands of military police invaded Barcelona city and began searching government offices of the local government, which is having its finances seized, and arresting public officials.
The response was unbelievable, on an ordinary weekday gigantic crowds appeared in Barcelona, Catalonia and around Spain. The police were blockaded and frustrated and withdrew when they finally could.
The day was a victory despite everything in that it showed it will be impossible to stop the Referendum without tens of thousands more imported police  who are needed elsewhere. the only other option would be to call in the army.
we reproduce here part of a live feed, roughly translated
Kaosenlared.net

Catalunya: Multitudinous mobilization against the ‘state of exception’ and in defense of freedoms and referendum

By the National. cat

From this morning and in response to the police intervention against the institutions of the Generalitat and the headquarters of the CUP, mobilizations continue in defense of democratic freedoms and the right to decide, and against the state of emergency and de facto suspension ‘of Catalan self-government, including the control of its finances by the state.

  see also:  Flood of Escalating Repression boosts Catalan Referendum Resistance

 From this morning and in response to the police intervention against the institutions of the Generalitat and the headquarters of the CUP, mobilizations continue in defense of democratic freedoms and the right to decide, and against the state of emergency and de facto suspension ‘of Catalan self-government, including the control of its finances by the state.

We reproduce the live information about the events published by El Nacional. cat.Mostra la imatge al Twitter

23:32

Assange: “Rajoy is doomed”

23:30
The father of Guillem Agulló, the young man killed by a fascist group in Valencia, has attended gatherings against repression

23:30
The father of Guillem Agulló, the young man killed by a fascist group in Valencia, has attended gatherings against repression

 23:24
Exclusive images of the Guardia Civil within the Department of Economy right now. Though they had finished searching they stayed inside till 6.oo am for fear of the 40,000 strong picket outside Continue reading Catalonia Revolution: Hundreds of Thousands block and defy Military police Repression

The Anarchist Library – Sept. 2017 Latest Entries Announcement

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How Do We Get Out of This Mess?.. George Monbiot’s Proposal for a New Revolutionary Narrative

Here are my proposals for a new politics, designed for the 21st Century

By George Monbiot, adapted from his new book Out of the Wreckage: a new politics for an age of crisis, and published in the Guardian, 9th September 2017

Is it reasonable to hope for a better world? Study the cruelty and indifference of governments, the disarray of opposition parties, the apparently inexorable slide towards climate breakdown, the renewed threat of nuclear war, and the answer appears to be no. Our problems look intractable, our leaders dangerous, while voters are cowed and baffled. Despair looks like the only rational response.

But over the past two years, I have been struck by four observations. What they reveal is that political failure is, in essence, a failure of imagination. They suggest to me that it is despair, not hope, that is irrational. I believe they light a path towards a better world.

The first observation is the least original. It is the realisation that it is not strong leaders or parties that dominate politics as much as powerful political narratives. The political history of the second half of the 20th Century could be summarised as the conflict between its two great narratives: the stories told by Keynesian social democracy and neoliberalism. Image result for neoliberalism disaster

First one and then the other captured the minds of people across the political spectrum. When the social democracy story dominated, even the Conservatives and Republicans adopted key elements of the programme. When neoliberalism took its place, political parties everywhere, regardless of their colour, fell under its spell. These stories overrode everything: personality, identity and party history.

This should not surprise us. Stories are the means by which we navigate the world. They allow us to interpret its complex and contradictory signals. We all possess a narrative instinct: an innate disposition to listen for an account of who we are and where we stand.Image result for how narratives rule the world

When we encounter a complex issue and try to understand it, what we look for is not consistent and reliable facts but a consistent and comprehensible story. When we ask ourselves whether something “makes sense”, the “sense” we seek is not rationality, as scientists and philosophers perceive it, but narrative fidelity. Does what we are hearing reflect the way we expect humans and the world to behave? Does it hang together? Does it progress as stories should progress?

A string of facts, however well-attested, will not correct or dislodge a powerful story. The only response it is likely to provoke is indignation: people often angrily deny facts that clash with the narrative “truth” established in their minds. The only thing that can displace a story is a story. Those who tell the stories run the world.

I came to the second, more interesting, observation with the help of the writer and organiser George Marshall. It is this. Although the stories told by social democracy and neoliberalism are starkly opposed to each other, they have the same narrative structure. We could call it the Restoration Story. It goes like this:

Disorder afflicts the land, caused by powerful and nefarious forces working against the interests of humanity. The hero – who might be one person or a group of people – revolts against this disorder, fights the nefarious forces, overcomes them despite great odds and restores order.https://inkchromatography.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/book-poster-long2.jpg?w=437&h=643

Stories that follow this pattern can be so powerful that they sweep all before them: even our fundamental values. For example, two of the world’s best-loved and most abiding narratives – Lord of the Rings and the Narnia series – invoke values that were familiar in the Middle Ages but are generally considered repulsive today. Disorder in these stories is characterised by the usurpation of rightful kings or their rightful heirs; justice and order rely on their restoration. We find ourselves cheering the resumption of autocracy, the destruction of industry and even, in the case of Narnia, the triumph of divine right over secular power.

If these stories reflected the values most people profess – democracy, independence, industrial “progress” – the rebels would be the heroes and the hereditary rulers the villains. We overlook the conflict with our own priorities because the stories resonate so powerfully with the narrative structure for which our minds are prepared. Facts, evidence, values, beliefs: stories conquer all.

The social democratic story explains that the world fell into disorder – characterised by the Great Depression – because of the self-seeking behaviour of an unrestrained elite. The elite’s capture of both the world’s wealth and the political system resulted in the impoverishment and insecurity of working people. By uniting to defend their common interests, the world’s people could throw down the power of this elite, strip it of its ill-gotten gains and pool the resulting wealth for the good of all.

Order and security would be restored in the form of a protective, paternalistic state, investing in public projects for the public good, generating the wealth that would guarantee a prosperous future for everyone. The ordinary people of the land – the heroes of the story – would triumph over those who had oppressed them.

The neoliberal story explains that the world fell into disorder as a result of the collectivising tendencies of the over-mighty state, exemplified by the monstrosities of Stalinism and Nazism, but evident in all forms of state planning and all attempts to engineer social outcomes. Collectivism crushes freedom, individualism and opportunity. Heroic entrepreneurs, mobilising the redeeming power of the market, would fight this enforced conformity, freeing society from the enslavement of the state.

Order would be restored in the form of free markets, delivering wealth and opportunity, guaranteeing a prosperous future for everyone. The ordinary people of the land, released by the heroes of the story (the freedom-seeking entrepreneurs) would triumph over those who had oppressed them.

Then – again with Marshall’s help – I stumbled into the third observation: the narrative structure of the Restoration Story is a common element in most successful political transformations, including many religious revolutions. This led inexorably to the fourth insight: the reason why, despite its multiple and manifest failures, we appear to be stuck with neoliberalism is that we have failed to produce a new narrative with which to replace it.

You cannot take away someone’s story without giving them a new one. It is not enough to challenge an old narrative, however outdated and discredited it may be. Change happens only when you replace it with another. When we develop the right story, and learn how to tell it, it will infect the minds of people across the political spectrum.

***

But the best on offer from major political parties is a microwaved version of the remnants of Keynesian social democracy. There are several problems with this approach. The first is that this old story has lost most of its content and narrative force. What we now call Keynesianism has been reduced to two thin chapters: lowering interest rates when economies are sluggish and using counter-cyclical public spending (injecting public money into the economy when unemployment is high or recession threatens).

Other measures, such as raising taxes when an economy grows quickly, to dampen the boom-bust cycle; the fixed exchange rate system; capital controls and a self-balancing global banking system (an International Clearing Union) – all of which John Maynard Keynes saw as essential complements to these policies – have been discarded and forgotten.

This is partly because the troubles that beset the Keynesian model in the 1970s have not disappeared. While the oil embargo in 1973 was the immediate trigger for the lethal combination of high inflation and high unemployment (‘stagflation’) that Keynesian policies were almost powerless to counteract, problems with the system had been mounting for years. Falling productivity and rising cost-push inflation (wages and prices pursuing each other upwards) were already beginning to erode support for Keynesian economics. Most importantly, perhaps, the programme had buckled in response to the political demands of capital.

Strong financial regulations and controls on the movement of money began to weaken in the 1950s, as governments started to liberalise financial markets. Richard Nixon’s decision in 1971 to suspend the convertibility of dollars into gold destroyed the system of fixed exchange rates on which much of the success of Keynes’s policies depended. The capital controls used to prevent financiers and speculators from sucking money out of balanced, Keynesian economies collapsed. We cannot hope that the strategies deployed by global finance in the 20th Century will be unlearnt.

But perhaps the biggest problem residual Keynesianism confronts is that, when it does work, it collides headfirst with the environmental crisis. A programme that seeks to sustain employment through constant economic growth, driven by consumer demand, seems destined to exacerbate our greatest predicament.

Without a new, guiding story of their own, allowing them to look towards a better future rather than a better past, it was inevitable that parties which once sought to resist the power of the wealthy elite would lose their sense of direction. Political renewal depends on a new political story. Without a new story, that is positive and propositional, rather than reactive and oppositional, nothing changes. With such a story, everything changes.

The narrative we build has to be simple and intelligible. If it is to transform our politics, it should appeal to as many people as possible, crossing traditional political lines. It should resonate with deep needs and desires. It should explain the mess we are in and means by which we might escape it. And, because there is nothing to be gained from spreading falsehoods, it must be firmly grounded in reality.

This might sound like a tall order. But there is, I believe, a clear and compelling Restoration Story to be told that fits this description.

***

Over the past few years, there has been a convergence of findings in different sciences: psychology, anthropology, neuroscience and evolutionary biology. Research in all these fields points to the same conclusion: that human beings are, in the words of an article in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, “spectacularly unusual when compared to other animals”. This refers to our astonishing degree of altruism. We possess an unparalleled sensitivity to the needs of others, a unique level of concern about their welfare, and a peerless ability to create moral norms that generalise and enforce these tendencies.

‘Examples Of Anarchist Ideas In Practice’.. FREE DOWNLOAD from Anarchist Library HERE:.. https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/peter-gelderloos-anarchy-works

We are also, among mammals, the supreme cooperators. We survived the rigours of the African savannahs, despite being weaker and slower than our predators and most of our prey, through developing a remarkable capacity for mutual aid. This urge to cooperate has been hard-wired into our brains through natural selection. Our tendencies towards altruism and cooperation are the central, crucial facts about humankind. But something has gone horribly wrong.Image result for dog eat dog neoliberalism

Our good nature has been thwarted by several forces, but perhaps the most powerful is the dominant political narrative of our times. We have been induced by politicians, economists and journalists to accept a vicious ideology of extreme competition and individualism, that pits us against each other, encourages us to fear and mistrust each other, and weakens the social bonds that make our lives worth living.

The story of our competitive, self-maximising nature has been told so often and with such persuasive power that we have accepted it as an account of who we really are. It has changed our perception of ourselves. Our perceptions, in turn, change the way we behave.

With the help of this ideology, and the neoliberal narrative used to project it, we have lost our common purpose. This leads in turn to a loss of belief in ourselves as a force for change, frustrating our potential to do what humans do best: to find common ground in confronting our predicaments, and to unite to overcome them. Our atomisation has allowed intolerant and violent forces to fill the political vacuum. We are trapped in a vicious circle of alienation and reaction. The hypersocial mammal is falling apart.

But by coming together to revive community life we, the heroes of this story, can break the vicious circle. Through invoking our capacity for togetherness and belonging, we can rediscover the central facts of our humanity: our altruism and mutual aid. By reviving community, built around the places in which we live, and by anchoring ourselves, our politics and parts of our economy in the life of this community, we can restore the best aspects of our nature.

Where there is atomisation, we will create a thriving civic life. Where there is alienation, we will forge a new sense of belonging: to neighbours, neighbourhood and society. Community projects will proliferate into a vibrant participatory culture. New social enterprises will strengthen our sense of attachment and ownership.

Where we find ourselves crushed between market and state, we will develop a new economics, that treats both people and planet with respect. We will build it around a great, neglected economic sphere: the commons. Local resources will be owned and managed by communities, ensuring that wealth is widely shared. Using common riches to fund universal benefits will supplement state provision, granting everyone security and resilience.

New evidence shows human cooperation and empathy predominate See Also: Kropotkin was Right: Cooperation beats Competition

Where we are ignored and exploited, we will revive democracy and retrieve politics from those who have captured it. New methods and rules for elections will ensure that every vote counts and financial power can never vanquish political power. Representative democracy will be reinforced by participatory democracy, that allows us to refine our political choices. Decision-making will be returned to the smallest political units that can discharge it.

The strong, embedded cultures we develop will be robust enough to accommodate social diversity of all kinds: a diversity of people, of origins, of life experiences, of ideas and ways of living. We will no longer need to fear people who differ from ourselves; we will have the strength and confidence to reject attempts to channel hatred towards them.

Through restoring community, renewing civic life and claiming our place in the world, we build a society in which our extraordinary nature – our altruism, empathy and deep connection – is released. A kinder world stimulates and normalises our kinder values. I propose a name for this story: the Politics of Belonging.

***

Some of this can begin without waiting for a change of government: one of the virtues of a politics rooted in community is that you do not need a national movement in order to begin. But other aspects of this programme depend on wider political change. This too might sound like an improbable hope – until you begin to explore some of the remarkable things that have been happening in the United States.

The Big Organising model developed by the campaign to elect Bernie Sanders as the Democratic nominee is potentially transformative. Rather than relying on big spending, big data and a big staff, it uses proliferating networks of volunteers, who train and supervise more volunteers, to carry out the tasks usually reserved for staff. While Hillary Clinton’s campaign was organising money, the Sanders campaign was organising people. By the end of the nomination process, more than 100,000 people had been recruited. Between them, they ran 100,000 events and spoke to 75 million voters.

His bid for the nomination was a giant live experiment, most of whose methods were developed on the job. Those who ran it report that by the time they stumbled across the strategy that almost won, it was too late. Had it been activated a few months earlier, the volunteer network could have abandoned all forms of targeting and contacted almost every adult in the USA. If the techniques they developed were used from the outset, they could radically alter the prospects of any campaign for a better world.

When, after reading a book by two of Sanders’s organisers, I argued in a video for the Guardian that this method could be used to transform the prospects of Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party, I was widely mocked. But it turned out to be true. By adopting elements of the Sanders strategy, Labour, supported by Momentum, almost won an election that was widely predicted to be a Conservative landslide. And the method that propelled this shift is still in its infancy.

I believe it could become still more powerful when combined with some of the techniques identified by former Congressional staffers in the Indivisible guide to influencing Members of Congress. These people studied the methods developed by the Tea Party movement and extracted the crucial lessons. They discovered that the key is to use local meetings with representatives to press home a single demand, film and share their responses on social media, then steadily escalate the pressure.

The Tea Party honed this technique until its requests became almost impossible to resist. The same thing can be done, though without the harassment to which that movement sometimes resorted. Supported by the Big Organising model, using its proliferating phone-bank teams and doorstep canvassing, the Indivisible methods could, I believe, be used to flip political outcomes in any nation that claims to be a democracy.

But none of this will generate meaningful and lasting change unless it is used to support a new, coherent political narrative.

Those who want a kinder politics know we have, in theory at least, the numbers on our side. Most people are socially-minded, empathetic and altruistic. Most people would prefer to live in a world in which everyone is treated with respect and decency, and in which we do not squander either our own lives or the natural gifts on which we and the rest of the living world depend. But a small handful, using lies and distractions and confusion, stifle this latent desire for change.

We know that, if we can mobilise such silent majorities, there is nothing this small minority can do to stop us. But because we have failed to understand what is possible, and above all failed to replace our tired political stories with a new, compelling narrative of transformation and restoration, we have failed to realise this potential. As we rekindle our imagination, we discover our power to act. And that is the point at which we become unstoppable.

George Monbiot’s book Out Of The Wreckage: a new politics for an age of crisis, is published by Verso.

 

Related posts

Review: How Did We Get Into This Mess? by George Monbiot

Kropotkin was Right: Cooperation beats Competition

MUNICIPAL ANARCHY EXPLAINED.. THE PRACTICAL ROJAVA ALTERNATIVE

Accidental Anarchist..(watch full docu) Ex diplomat on Why he Changed his Mind

The Age of Empathy.

KROPOTKIN.. UPDATING MUTUAL AID

SLIDESHOW: JESSE COHN’S ‘INTRO TO ANARCHISM’.. 282 SLIDES