I was just one of the crowd in the Brisbane leg of the 20th September Climate Strike. I have no privileged insight into the inner workings, debates or mechanics of the day. These reflections are offered to help to understand where we are at and where we are going inspired by Noel Ignatiev’s readings of CLR James’ practice: ‘As a person who had decided to devote his life to revolution, my job was to Recognize and Record the new society as it made its appearance…’Continue reading “Reflections on the Global Climate Strike! Friday September 20th Brisbane”
In this episode Dave (@withsobersenses) chats with Elena Jeffreys (@ElenaJeffreys) from the sex worker organisation Respect Inc. Elena talks about the history of sex worker self-organisations, the conditions of sex workers in Australia today and the importance of the struggle to decriminalise sex work to improve the working conditions and lives of sex workers. Elena digs into the what is wrong with the ‘Swedish Model’, the negative and violent impact it has had on peoples’ lives, and the role that sections of feminism and the Left have played in instituting it. Content Warning – the episode mentions violence against women.
Music by Goran Bregovic – (with possibly ambiguous lyrics)
In this episode Dave talks with Bridget Harilaou about the recent Imagining Abolition Conference organised by Sisters Inside. Bridget discusses the ideas that were discussed there, their implications for struggles and the kind of future abolishing prisons points to. She digs into how prisons quilt together histories of colonialism, the operation of patriarchy and the oppression of Indigenous people and thus why the struggle against them is so important.
Bridget’s work can be found in many places. Here is some of it:
Sisters Inside do lots of amazing things. They are currently raising funds to free Aboriginal women imprisoned for the non-payment of fines. Chip in if you can
Music by Cat Power
In this episode Dave (@withsobersenses) chats with Andrew(@fernandre3000) and Feargal(@feargal89) from the Anti-Poverty Network Qld. We talk about what they have been up to, what their strategy is and how this has gone. APN Qld are one of the most exciting developments going on in Queensland right now with friends and comrades leaving old and stale forms of activism behind to experiment with organising based on where people are at and in ways that directly speak to lived conditions. It is exciting stuff.
APN have a conference coming up We Deserve A Living – Anti-Poverty Week Conference 2018
We talk about:
‘We had Marx, they had Pauline’: left organising in poor communities by Joanna Horton
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Music by Gang of Four
In this episode Dave (@withsobersenses) grabs a recorder and heads to the Labour Day rally. He interviews friends and comrades about the rally, what they think the impact of #ChangeTheRules has been, and if there is any opportunity to broaden and open up struggle? Due to a moments hestitation he didn’t try to interview Sally McManus as she walked past.
Music by Alistair Hulet
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In this episode of Living The Dream Jon (@jonpiccini) and Dave (@withsobersenses) go through the entrails with an inverted periscope to try to see what we should expect for 2017. We chat about Invasion Day and the rising tide of Indigenous struggles, the Centrelink debacle, anti-Road protests and more. We are pretty optimistic about the year ahead and look forward to hearing your thoughts.
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Articles, people and groups we mentioned or are relevant:
Cottle, A. (2011), ‘The Colour-line and the Third Period: A Comparative Analysis of American and Australian Communism and the Question of Race, 1928-1934’, American Communist History, vol 10, no 2 , pp 119 – 131.
In this episode of Living the Dream Jon (@JonPiccini) and Dave (@withsobersenses) talk about the meltdown of politics in Queensland and the failure of the ALP government to carry out a coherent plan to address the decline in capital accumulation and facilitate social reproduction. Rob Pyne resigning from Labor(#corbynofcairns ?), candidates sending dicks pics and the shared anti-political language of both sides of the referendum campaign show a political class in freefall and deeply out of touch with the concerns of everyday people.
Should we care? Or just point and laugh? What is the relationship of the political to capitalism on a whole and to our struggle against it? How much of this is this a broader and global phenomenon and what can it tell us about life in Queensland?
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Articles we refer to include:
Humphrey McQueen – Queensland: a state of mind
Andy Paine – Rewriting the political script
Mario Tronti – The Political (1979)
Mike Beggs – The Void Stares Back