10 years after June 18
It’s worth pointing out that today it’s a decade ago that the international protests dubbed J18 against the G8 meeting in Cologne took place in many cities around the world.
I was in London at the time for the protest there, organised by Reclaim The Streets, which was a pivotal point in the development of a possible revolutionary movement in the UK. What seemed to be a peak and the start of something new would soon decline and be suppressed. [Read more →]
DATE: APRIL 1st, 2009
TIME: 9:43 PM
MESSAGE: WE ARE A GROUP OF WORKERS AND SOLDIERS ASSEMBLED AT TWO FACTORIES OF THE PYONGYANG GENERAL DOMESTIC FOWL CORPORATION STOP OUR COMMON CAUSE IS THE IMMINENT LAUNCH OF A TAEPEDONG MISSILE BY THE DPRK MILITARY JUNTA IN ORDER TO JUSTIFY INTERNAL REPRESSION WITHIN THE COUNTRY AND ‘VOLUNTARY SPEED-UPS’ ENFORCED IN INDUSTRIAL FACTORIES STOP WE HAVE SOME COPIES OF CAPITAL BY KARL MARX HERE AND BASICALLY WE ARE LIVING WORSE THAN BARBARIC 19TH CENTURY ENGLAND STOP NOT COOL WE ARE NO LONGER CONVINCED STOP
NOW WE ARE BEING REQUESTED TO MOBILIZE FOR AN INTER-IMPERIALIST BLOODBATH BETWEEN THE DPRK MILITARY JAPAN AND THE UNITED STATES STOP WE WILL NOT TAKE PART STOP WE HAVE SEEN THROUGH THE THUGGISH LIES OF OUR OWN GOVERNMENT AND WE ARE TIRED OF CHANTING FOR FOOD RATIONS STOP NO MORE BEGGING STOP WHAT OTHER COUNTRIES REFER TO AS CULTS WE NOW RECOGNIZE AS OUR OWN SOCIETY STOP ALTHOUGH WE HAVE LIMITED ACCESS TO HISTORIES OF OTHER COUNTRIES WE RECOGNIZE OUR STRUGGLE NOT ONLY IN THE GLOBAL DISCONTENT OF WAGED WORKERS AND MILITARY DEFECTION BUT MORE DIRECTLY IN THE STRUGGLE OF REASON THAT ARISES IN DISAGREEMENT AND THE CLASH OF IDEAS STOP ALTHOUGH THEY CONTAIN BOTH THE TENDENCY TOWARDS REASON AND FUNDAMENTALIST BARBARISM THE BOURGEOIS DEMOCRATIC SOCIETIES AT LEAST PRESERVE THE POTENTIAL FOR REVOLUTION BECAUSE THEY PROMISE THEIR CITIZENS HAPPINESS BUT DO NOT DELIVER STOP
THIS TENSION TENDS NOT TO EMERGE IN A SOCIETY BASED ON TOTALITARIANISM WHERE WORK IS THE CENTRAL RITUAL AND THE NOISE OF THE MACHINE IS ENOUGH TO DROWN EVERYTHING ELSE OUT STOP INSTEAD WE PUSH THE TENSION TO THE BREAKING POINT STOP WE MODEL OUR STRUGGLE UPON THE AMERICAN HERO JANET RENO WHO SO RESOLUTELY FOUGHT AGAINST A SIMILAR APOCALYPTIC FUNDAMENTALISM IN WACO TEXAS STOP WE WILL NOT COMMIT MASS SUICIDE FOR THE WORK REGIME STOP MS RENO WE WILL MAKE YOU PROUD OF US WE ARE IN CONTROL OF THE TANKS STOP SOCIALISM IS THE AGGREGATE REDUCTION OF WORKING TIME AND THE FREEING UP OF LEISURE TIME OR IT IS NOTHING STOP WE 600 ASSEMBLED MACHINE OPERATORS SOLDIERS AND HOUSEWIVES ANNOUNCE OUR DEFECTION FROM THE CULT SOCIETY STOP INSTEAD OF WAR ON ANOTHER NATION WE DECLARE WAR ON THE CULT PRINCIPLE AND THE SOCIETY IT PROTECTS STOP WE AWAIT WORD FROM JAPANESE AND AMERICAN WORKERS WHOSE STRUGGLES ARE NO DOUBT SIMILAR TO OUR OWN STOP ALSO SEND CHEEZBURGERS AND INTERNETS PLZ STOP
Rave as Confrontation –
Marching Against the CJB in 1994
I read a review of a club night recently in my local free paper, The Islington Tribune. To capture just what a great place this club is they wrote that it is “filled with the kind of happy campers you could imagine filled a field in the ‘90s – but less crusty – it specialises in delivering the kind of electro disco beats that send buttoned-up city types into an air-punching frenzy.”
The funny thing about the above sentence is that it perfectly captures the shift from rave as a force to be reckoned with (the crusties who actually LIVE in the field – Yuk!) to a pleasant night’s entertainment for ‘buttoned-up city types’. It is not misty-eyed nostalgia to recall that rave music – as a bottom up musical and social revolution – really did disturb the status quo for a bit back there. They even brought in laws to deal with this menace!
[Read more →]
The rise and repression of the free festival movement in the UK and some intersections with radical anti-politics.
This article is based on a series of talks held in Basel, Berlin, Graz and Rome in 2007, and has been revised for this issue of datacide.
It doesn’t attempt to present a definitive history, but follow some tracks of contamination and inspiration. Some readers will already be familiar with some of the described historical frames, others not at all. It was written in a way that should be accessible without prior knowledge in terms of the facts and factoids, but under the assumption of an understanding of the validity of counter cultures as possible antitheses to the capitalist culture industry.
It also leaves out many other strains that contributed to this antagonism, such as left communism, surrealism, lettrism, the situationists, communes, sexpol, anti-psychiatry, neoism etc, as it focusses on the festival.
“The festival is apt to end frantically in an orgy, a nocturnal debauch of sound and movement transformed into rhythm and dance by the crudest of instruments.” (Roger Caillois, 1938) [Read more →]
NEO-LIBERAL GEOGRAPHIES AND WORKER INSURGENCY IN OSAKA
“I realize as the train pulls in that the station is on fire. The platform is aflame and below the streets are empty with people running past occasionally. Something is happening. I pick up some rocks and start throwing them at a police line.”
-anonymous rioter at Kamagasaki
“You must help yourself.”
-Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS
October 2nd, 1990. The day started as any other does in Osaka’s Nishi-Nari ward, men lined up around the yoseba employment center, in the thousands, waiting for work. If it came, they would load into the cars of construction contractors in groups, with parachute pants and wrapped heads. For eight hours they might wave light wands ‘guiding pedestrians’, dig concrete roads, re-pave highways or variously break their backs in the sun. This proletarian fate was ceded by the city’s bourgeoisie over a period of thirty years of continuous unemployed unrest; all the union officials touted it as labor ‘won’ from an inhuman system. After all, without work, one does not eat, and once conditions have worsened to the point that this phrase becomes dictatorial, one works in a fervor; for work leads to ‘independence’. Work might one day lead out of the slum.
[Read more →]