aus climate camp - re-questionaire

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woooo
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Jul 17 2008 03:00
aus climate camp - re-questionaire

Hi, given the first australian climate camp has just occured i thought the questionaire below could be something of interest for us. i've slightly editted with apols to si for our context. i have the impression that more liberalism dominates the aus version but would be interested to hear otherwise or if and what potential is there or not.

climate camp questionnaire (& the viability of green liberalism)
si "communism for fun and profit"
Posts: 254 Joined: 16-01-05 Send pm
Submitted by si on 23 August, 2007 - 20:53.
I'm writing an article on modern ecologism (the line, roughly, is going to be the obvious one about liberalism, recuperation, agency, class, with a few bits of speculative Luxemburgian economy and a ravingly optimistic last paragraph) and I was hoping to get some perspectives other than my own (non-attendee's). I know the Afed went, as did a smattering of ex-wombles and so on. Individual perspectives welcome too, as well as notes not fitting comfortably into what are rushed questions.

incidentally, what do people think the chances of a green liberal victory, and the austerity that would follow, actually are? the suppression of international logistics is what is basically being talked about - the end of globalisation - is this a manoeuvre that is even theoretically possible? I'm inclined to believe that it's not, and that greenism will simply be appropriated as a political cover for all sorts of policies useful to the state and capital accumulation, as posited by eg. George Caffentzis in his excellent article in the last number of mute ... http://www.metamute.org/en/Apocalypse-and-or-Business-as-Usual.-The-Energy-Debate-After-the-2004-US-Presidential-Elections

anyway: questionnaire below; answers appreciated either by pm or publically below.

Brief questionnaire for those who managed/saw fit to attend the climate camp.

Intentions

i)did you attend as part of an organised intervention by a group? which group?

ii)what did you (or your organisation) hope to achieve in attending the climate camp?

iii)how far do you think you succeeded in those goals?

iv)do you see a future for intervention in the modern green movement? what?

Impressions.

v)what was your impression of the composition of camp? were there any particularly clear internal divisions (along whatever lines)? <edit> (add)ie. class composition...

vi)Aufheben in their article on the anti-roads movement (The Struggle Against Roads) place strong emphasis on the (material) social relations forged in the course of the Anti-M11 campaign in particular. This camp was very much shorter, but nevertheless: were there any signs of comparable (inter-)subjective developments on the part of the inhabitants?

vii) {overlap with the first section, a little, and in light of that last}What were your impressions of the direct actions? was there, for example, the self-discipline exercised in g20 melbourne or the pacifism of the clowns in various places in evidence?

on something else i have placed my bad jokes on climate camp based on what i used to know of the uk scene here...

woooo
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Jul 18 2008 01:01

I'm also curious about anarch's and fellow travellers who attend or did stuff at students of sustainability and class topics etc

si
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Jul 18 2008 17:16

flattering. chunks of that - especially the aufheben question - were badly received last time, rightly I think, as jargonistic and obscure. you might consider reworking it or dropping it completely.

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Rats
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Jul 27 2008 14:51

Intentions

i)did you attend as part of an organised intervention by a group? which group?
Yes, drunks against climate change(good way to get away with carrying a piece of carpet around at an action)

ii)what did you (or your organisation) hope to achieve in attending the climate camp?
victory

iii)how far do you think you succeeded in those goals?
victoriously

iv)do you see a future for intervention in the modern green movement? what?
asin, future blockading of coal trains? i suppose so

Impressions.
It was all good fun

v)what was your impression of the composition of camp? were there any particularly clear internal divisions (along whatever lines)? <edit> (add)ie. class composition...
Yes, hence the No Borders pirate neighbourhood occured. The place was originally divided by state and pre-ordained groups. Pirate camp house internationals, and people opposed to such divisions.

vi)Aufheben in their article on the anti-roads movement (The Struggle Against Roads) place strong emphasis on the (material) social relations forged in the course of the Anti-M11 campaign in particular. This camp was very much shorter, but nevertheless: were there any signs of comparable (inter-)subjective developments on the part of the inhabitants?
Sure

vii) {overlap with the first section, a little, and in light of that last}What were your impressions of the direct actions? was there, for example, the self-discipline exercised in g20 melbourne or the pacifism of the clowns in various places in evidence?
The usual shitfight that occurs around NVDA happened. "whaa whaa, i'm a middle class white kid, if someone graffitied my dads business, or cut the fence down, he'd be upset, so i'm going to say that's violence and denounce anyone who'd dream of it!"

Climate camp was fun, spotting undercover cops is like hide and seek but better. It was sort of hard to do at night, and i got accused of it myself because i don't have dreadlocks and/or piercings, i felt discriminated against. Props to sydney FnB for being fun to cook with and feeding me.

princess mob
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Aug 10 2008 04:54

I didn't go to climate camp (partly due to a strange aversion to camping in the freezing cold while already sick), but from what I've heard:

- the push for strict NVDA was really really strong, & had been going on for lots of the lead up. People had argued against it during the preparations but had lost. At the big meetings in the camp someone argued that running was violent cos it might make the cops nervous. People arguing for a larger-group action of pulling down a fence or something were completely shut down in the spokescouncil.

- Some anarchists in Sydney & Melbourne had made a second edition of Unless You Are Free, themed 'an anarchist paper on climate change & the environment,' & particularly focussed on class & anti-capitalist analysis. It looks awesome, & the articles are good too. It was distributed at the camp & sos, & from what I heard was received quite well. I don't think it's online, but I can mail you a hard copy if you pm me yr address.

- Mutiny did a workshop at sos on class & the environment, which I heard went really well - about 40 people maybe, & some good discussion about moving beyond ideas of green consumerism. The people who facilitated it have been promising ever since to write up the notes into an article for the mutiny zine, I should go hassle them.

I hope this is of some interest to you dr.

Tim B
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Aug 11 2008 12:59

Hey,

just re the new Unless You are Free-I have the pdf on my computer & it can be easily e-mailed to individuals(not too sure about putting it online though)-so if anyone prefers that format I'd be very happy to send it to you.

It's really good I promise! (ah the joys of self-promotion)

Was going to post a long, detailed response to the questionnaire; but unfortunately my laptop died. Grrr...

Anyway just some points then:

1.In terms of 'intervention' around the 'green movement' , (although my thought changes daily)I reckon the most useful thing that anarchists/revolutionaries/anti-capitalists can be doing is fostering radical discussion around questions of how to respond to climate change. Why should we be anti-capitalist? What does this actually mean? What are the implications of climate change for working class politics & struggle today?

On a more tactical level too, questions like 'What is direct action?' (hopefully not small-l liberal civil disobedience), 'What is the function of the media in the capitalist state?' 'What is the role of the police? 'What does non-hierarchical organising mean?' can be brought up.'This can be done in a comradely way, and is about the person who brings up the question learning as well.

Obviously this process isn't going to immediately change the minds of everyone involved, but perhaps it can contribute to a more revolutionary politics in the long-term.

2. My specific impressions from climate camp. Personally, I was pretty exhausted by the 3rd day-had been photocopying miscellanea non stop beforehand- so I'm probably not the best witness ever but....

-The Mass Action was a good, militant demo & certainly a lot more fun than your typical rally.
-It was nice to see people coming together under, by the standards of Australian enviro activism, a quite strong common politics.
-As a downside there was a lot of moralistic stuff about 'non-violence' and some quite authoritarian & bureaucratic practices as well. The composition of the camp was more diverse than it could have been, but it was still rooted in already existing enviro activist networks.

Hope that's useful in some way,

Tim

P.S I've also linked below to two articles about Climate Camp, for further reading.

http://www.jura.org.au/files/jura/Mutiny%2028%20web%20view.pdf

http://www.solidarity.net.au/web/newcastle-climate-camp-fosters-national-debate-and-planning-on-climate-change/

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Anarchia
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Aug 11 2008 20:46

As an aside, I think this piece offers some fairly salient thoughts on the whole climate camp concept...

Quote:
What was the point?

Today was the Climate Camp Day of Mass Action. As breathless reports on Indymedia inform us, protesters attempted to storm the camp by land, air (?) and sea. Four of them actually made it inside the camp, and managed to hang a banner!

Christ, the British state must be quaking in its boots, they can't even shut the thing down for one day. E.On boasted that the site was running perfectly fine for the duration. Which is strange because they were promising to shut the thing down for good, like permanently.

Is this charade really going to be repeated year on year, in the hope that it's somehow having an effect on government policy? This year with ever more lurid promises not to fulfil? Will there never be any attempt to actually think coherently about exactly what activists do with their limited resources?

Judging by some of self-congratulatory crap quoted on the BBC about this being a success, I'd guess they'll be back next year in slightly diminished numbers. Personally I can't see any single way in which you could describe climate camp as having an obvious benefit to the world. Inconvenience to the government? None, besides paying for the police.

For the rest of the piece, click here.

woooo
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Aug 14 2008 02:16

if i could GET A COPY OF THE Anarcho climate change paper to my email ( note 4 letter o's ) dr.woooo at gmail.com that would be way cool. better still can it be placed on a website?

does anyone have an email or attachment of the flare in the void paper that can also be emailed... ?

princess mob
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Aug 14 2008 03:41

the "riot training manual"? i think it may only exist in hard copy, but i'll ask around.

woooo
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Aug 18 2008 02:54

maybe it can be scanned if someone has access to one.