Alternatives

Articles about the alternatives to capitalism both in terms of practical experimentation and theoretical study

Understanding the Zapatistas as a social movement

Date:

It is now five years since the EZLN (Zapatista Army of National Liberation) came to the attention of the world when they seized five towns in Chiapas on New Year's day in 1994. The years since have seen only a couple of weeks of actual warfare. However the uneasy cease-fire has seen hundreds of land occupations and several national and international gatherings. Thousands, if not tens of thousands, of people have travelled to Chiapas to see the rebellion with their own eyes. Hundreds have been deported by the Mexican government for doing so. Solidarity groups exist in most western countries, including Ireland. In 1993 Chiapas was as anknown backwater in Mexico. Now, in the eyes of many activists, it has moved to centre stage.

Freedom and Revolution: The Bolshevik Experience.

Date:

Does the end justify the means? Many on the left believe so. Aileen O'Carroll argues that the means used play a part in creating the end that is achieved. The best example of this is the Russian Revolution of 1917.

In 1922 Emma Goldman complained Soviet Russia, had become the modern socialist Lourdes, to which the blind and the lame, the deaf and the dumb were flocking for miraculous cures(1). The Russian Revolution was the first occasion where decades of revolutionary ideas could be applied to real life. What was theory was now practice. The struggle between the two concepts of revolution - the statist-centralist and the libertarian federalist - moved from the realm of the abstract to the concrete.

The question thrown up by the October revolution is fundamental. Once capitalism has been defeated, how is communism to be achieved? While there are certainly faults to be found with aspects of the anarchist movement, at least it cannot be criticised for getting the basics wrong. Anarchists have consistently argued that freedom and democracy are not optional extras. Rather they form part of the conditions necessary for the growth of communism.

Video - Living Utopia - The Anarchists and the Spanish Revolution

Date:

This documentary has interviews with 30 anarchist participants in the Spanish revolution alongside footage captured at that time. [Video]

"Living Utopia is a unique documentary that blends the historical account of the origins and development of the Spanish anarchist movement, focussing on the 1936 war. A reflection on the philosophical underpinnings of such a movement and their practical application. As both an informative and inspiring piece of research it is considered a jewel amongst historians and rebel hearts.

Interview: Belfast Co-operatives.

Date:
Belfast has seen something of a surge of co-operatively run businesses in recent years as more people are faced with the choice between precarious work and unemployment with meagre dole payments. Belfast is now home to a taxi co-op, Union Taxis, a cleaning co-op, Belfast Cleaning Society, a co-operatively run café, Lúnasa, and a digital media co-op, The Creative Workers’ Co-Op - to name but a few. We sat down with Clem and Colin, two of the three members of the Creative Workers’ Co-Op, and Elena from Lúnasa to get their thoughts on co-ops in Belfast.
 

Revolution in Rojava - audio of Dublin launch and discussion by author

Date:

Revolution in Rojava” is an eye-witness account on the experience of creating a bottom up social order which actively challenges all forms of oppression and exploitation. The struggle in Rojava (a mostly Kurdish region north of Syria), despite the extent of counterrevolutionary and imperialist forces aligned against it, continues to nurture an autonomous, grassroots resistance across its multiply ethno-religious communities.

Environmental crisis, environmental struggles with Janet Biehl - video from #DABF 2016

Date:

The environmental crisis represents ‘one of the gravest and most severe existential threats to our species survival’. International agreements aimed at curbing fossil fuel emissions have largely been a failure, with the most recent Paris CoP21 conference labelled ‘a fraud and a fake’ by leading climatologist and activist James Hansen. Capitalism’s unrelenting assault on the natural environment has pushed us past the point of continuing any pretence of ‘safe carbon mitigation’. It is becoming more widely accepted that we now need a global restructuring of the economic mode of production; capitalism must be dissolved.

A world to change in 2016

Date:

We awake to news that more towns in Ireland are under water due to storm flooding. And that perhaps the sea ice at the north pole might melt due to temperatures rising above zero. The first story is given a lot more prominence in Irish media than the second but strangely at the same time another story is being celebrated. The start of yet more greenhouse gases being pumped out of their safe place far below the sea off the Irish shore to be processed and then released into the atmosphere via the Corrib refinery.

Believe a better world is possible and don't be afraid to dream

Date:

Believe a better world is possible. Don't be afraid to dream. We all know this isn't good enough. How could it be? Are we not destined for so much more? Have we not seen glimpses of what we are truly capable of? This could be paradise. It really could be.

Margaret Thatcher, former UK prime minister, was fond of bragging that 'There Is No Alternative!'. Settle in you plebs, there is no way out, this is it. Capitalism is the only way - and not only capitalism, but capitalism in its most feral neoliberal form.

And not only that but state domination, and the assault on our persons by an arsenal of tyrannies: sexism, racism, queerphobia, ableism, and more.

The Water Charges: After we win, what comes next?

Date:

The revolt against the water charges is of a size and militancy that if we stay on the streets we will certainly win. But the revolt has also exposed in plain view the level of co-operation between media, politicians, big businessmen like Denis O’Brien and the gardaí. All have acted together to cajole, bully and suppress protest and then to lie and distort events.

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

Date:
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.
 

Like what you're reading?
Find out when we publish more via the
WSM Facebook
& WSM Twitter

Syndicate content