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(en) Britain, Direct Action #36 Spring/Summer 2006 III. (3/3)

Date Wed, 27 Sep 2006 10:28:27 +0300


> Motsoaledi community organising
One of Zabalaza’s longest standing organising drives is in Motsoaledi
squatter camp in Soweto. Thousands of black families from various
backgrounds live in shacks with no legal status, no rights to their homes,
no running water, no proper sanitation, etc. The threat of eviction is
constant and unemployment tops 80%. There is no school or any other
public services. To all intents and purposes the state is not present in
Motsoaledi at all, short of occasional police raids on illegal immigrants.

In 2001 local Anarchists formed Black Action Group and started practical
organising in the form of a community vegetable garden and a library for
tools, books and anarchist propaganda. Comrades have also created a
crèche, and have been planning recycling facilities - all according to the
anarchist principles of horizontal organising and mutual aid.

Local ANC members fear being exposed as liars and traitors and have been
saying that 'anarchists are not allowed in this country'. This was not well
received in the local community where anarchists now have a long standing
presence. The anti-voting and anti-ANC mood is getting stronger. At a
recent community meeting, when a local councillor turned up to urge
people to register to vote, people turned on him and chased him away.

'Anarchist ideas are there', says a comrade from Motsoaledi. 'People have
them naturally. We just have to create an environment where people get
interested for more information about anarchism which is why the
community library and social centre is so important.'
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Past Tense: History is what’s happening

Past Tense is a publishing project based in South London, mainly (though
not exclusively) publishing pamphlets on London radical history. Initially it
began as the work of one person, uncovering the subversive, hidden and
esoteric past around Southwark and the Elephant & Castle. As it exists
now, it has grown to include several individuals, autonomously following
their own historical trails, publishing new texts and reprinting old, out of
print ones.

However we also work together, forming the core of the South London
Radical History Group, which has been meeting irregularly since January
2003, as an open forum, discussing historical issues, organising history
walks, inviting speakers on various topics. Our discussions have wandered
across many struggles and neighbourhoods, including gentrification in
North Southwark, the battles to preserve green spaces in South London,
anti-war movements both historically and in our own experiences, the
1983-4 occupation of the South London Women’s Hospital, Mayday in
tradition and modern times, and many more. Although we mainly meet in
South London, we aren’t bound by arbitrary borders, having even
trespassed in North London at times. Past Tense has published several
pamphlets based on the Radical History Group’s talks and walks.

a better future

While there are different interpretations of history and varying reasons for
people’s interest in the past, we broadly share an activist background;
most of us have spent many years more or less in the anarchist scene,
involved in the numerous struggles of the past twenty years or more. While
some of us may be more or less active at the moment, it’s clear that we
see our interest in history not just as an academic exercise divorced from
our own time, but as relevant to current struggles and including our own
experiences. A knowledge of the movements, ideas and events of the past
can help to shape our actions in the present. History is often either
repackaged and sanitised as ‘heritage’, stripped of political content
and brushing over conflict, rebellion and repression with a rosy glow; or it
appears academic, distant and unconnected to our every day experience.
But looking back to such mass movements as the Chartists or the radical
clubs of the 19th century, regular history classes, an understanding of how
we got to where we are, was considered a vital element to the fight for a
better future. An interesting sign is that activists in Bristol and North
London are also getting together History Groups, linked to current
struggles.

The pamphlets we have issued are written, laid out, printed and put
together by us, which doesn’t only give a certain sense of achievement
when it’s done (as well as whiling away many long winter evenings),
but also allows us to keep them cheap. The disadvantages of producing
pamphlets in this day and age, include the rapid disappearance of radical
bookshops, and that many commercial bookshops refuse to stock them.
It’s clear that these days the spread of texts on the internet, as well as a
decline in the number of radical bookshops, has cut deep into small
alternative self-publishing like ours...But although the internet does provide
useful information, we feel that it’s useful to have traditionally
produced pamphlets and books out there; not only are they easier to read,
but also because if they are visible in places like bookshops and libraries,
people can come across them who wouldn’t necessarily stumble on
obscure websites.

We got big plans for the future: there should be two books coming out this
year, plus the Radical History Group has lined up a number of meetings,
and a couple of history walks are in the pipeline. On top of this we are
always looking for new and old texts to publish, so if you have anything
lying around that isn’t out there, we would be interested in giving it the
once over.

They say the past is another country, but only if you respect THEIR
borders.

For more info, email: mudlark@macunlimited.net or write to: Past
Tense/South London Radical History Group, c/o 56a Info Shop, 56
Crampton St, London, SE17.
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Reds on the Green: a Short Tour of Clerkenwell Radicalism
Past Tense - 72 pages - £2.00

This pamphlet sketches the long and rich history of radical politics and
struggle in Clerkenwell. It also begins to address the lack of easily available
material on the area’s history, while setting Clerkenwell against a wider
backdrop of the radical history of London in general:

...the history of Clerkenwell is a microcosm of the larger history of
London...whenever there has been major social change and/or unrest in
London it has been reflected by events in Clerkenwell, and the unrest often
manifested and organised itself here...

Charting the changing fortunes and developments of the area’s working
class community, Reds on the Green takes us through such events as the
Peasants Revolt; the Great Plague; the Great Fire; the Gordon Riots as well
as the activities of the Chartist movement and the first International. There
is commentary on the contributions of the likes of Dan Chatterton, Guy
Aldred and, to a lesser extent, V. I. Lenin. There are also passing
comments on the Clerkenwell of today, relating the historical Clerkenwell
to both to gentrification in recent years, and to some of the names and
buildings that still survive.
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The Story of William Cuffay, Black Chartist
Past Tense – 16 pages – £0.75

Apart from anything else, this pamphlet – a reprint from Staying Power:
the History of Black People in Britain, by Peter Fryer – dispels the myth
that black people’s contribution to working class history and politics
began only in the 1950’s.

The pamphlet tells the story of William Cuffay, a tailor and son of a freed
West Indian slave. Cuffay was one of the leaders of the Chartist movement,
the first mass political movement of the British working class. He and his
family suffered for his political beliefs and activities. His wife was
summarily sacked, and he, himself was subject to racist taunting in the
likes of Punch. In 1848, aged 61, William Cuffay was arrested for allegedly
‘levying war against Queen Victoria’, put on trial for treason and
transported for life to Tasmania.

This pamphlet is a powerful tale of an often-forgotten figure in
London’s working class history.
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Nine Days in May: the General Strike in Southwark
Past Tense – 36 pages – £1.00

The May 1926 General Strike is part of working class mythology. When the
TUC called the Strike in support of the miners, nearly 2 million workers
across the country joined in. A million miners had been locked out for
rejecting wage cuts of up to 25%. However, after nine days, despite
widespread solidarity, the TUC caved in. They were simply frightened to
death of losing control of the working class power that had been unleashed.

Nine Days in May describes the General Strike in what were then the
Metropolitan Boroughs of Bermondsey, Camberwell and Southwark (all
now united as the London Borough of Southwark). We get insights into
developments in all three boroughs; the role of trades councils in organising
and distributing news; the clashes with the police protecting blackleg
labour; and the attempts to continue the Strike after the TUC’s
betrayal. This is supplemented with accounts by local participants.

All in all, we have a glimpse into the day to day running of one of the most
crucial battles of our history and an interesting view of how this hugely
significant event developed in Southwark.
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Poor Man’s Heaven: the Land of Cokaygne (a 14th century utopian
vision)
by Omasius Gorgut – Past Tense – 40 pages – £1.00

The poor of the middle ages lived a life of exploitation and suffering.
However, they dreamed of a land without suffering, where people lived in
harmony and plenty without having to work. In 14th century England, this
earthly paradise emerged in a popular song, the Land of Cokaygne, a
utopian vision subverting the misery and poverty of serfdom:

In Cokaygne we drink and eat
Freely without care and sweat.
The food is choice and clear the wine,
At fourses and at supper time,
I say again, and I dare swear,
No land is like it anywhere,
Under heaven no land like this
Of such joy and endless bliss.

Poor Man’s Heaven reproduces a version of the song and describes its
context of medieval traditions of resistance. In the middle ages, the Church
was all-powerful. The idea of a better life in ‘this world’, that
‘Earth and Heaven are not Two…but One’, was not counter to
the ‘natural order’ espoused by the clergy. It was also seriously
dangerous to those who expressed it. We now recognise this vision, or
something like it, as the socialist society we still struggle for.
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British Syndicalism: pages from labour history
by Tom Brown – Kate Sharpley Library – 27 pages – £1.00

Tom Brown, one of the clearest anarcho-syndicalist speakers and writers
and a shop steward through world war 2, is an important figure in the
building of modern British anarcho-syndicalism.

These essays outline arguments for ‘revolutionary industrial
unionism’, interweaving British labour history with the international
class struggle. Many of the arguments are aimed at rebel stewards –
‘syndicalist industrial unions offer a form of organisation superior to
trades unionism and, when trade union branches are addressed on the
subject, approval is almost unanimous’. Political parties are summed
up thus: ‘a party concerned only with the welfare of “The
Party” and its conquest of power can only do harm to the workers’
cause. Its measure of success is its measure of mischief.’

Like many militants, Tom Brown was almost unknown in his lifetime and,
despite his massive contribution to the workers’ movement, is ignored
by pretentious social historians.

A different time, a different language almost, but the message is still the
same – it’s always jam tomorrow on the basis of shit today, keeping
the inmates passive and quiet, while politicians do their self-serving dirty
work. Tom Brown saw through party politics, never losing sight of the class
struggle – a cracking read.
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Rich is Beautiful
by Richard D. North – IEA – 36 pages – hardback – £14.00

The Institute of Economic Affairs dreams of turning us all on to the free
market, abandoning thoughts of the state making us happy, looking instead
to naked capitalism. North takes on arguments that ‘mass
affluence’ has made us less happy and equal; created extreme poverty;
widened divisions; wrecked communities, society and morals; turned us on
to junk food and disposable tat; and is destroying the planet.

He dismisses critics as dreamers whose accusations have no foundation. In
fact, pursuing wealth creates real happiness. There’s less
unemployment in the Anglo-Saxon world than Europe, so getting the state
out and letting the rich get richer means ‘trickle down’ works a
treat for the poor. We need more of it, so push ‘globalisation’
don’t criticise it.

As for morals and society going down the pan, that’s rubbish too. More
rich people means more philanthropists – we can all be Richard
Branstons. When do-gooders start making and spending money we’ll
all realise that high taxes and a nanny state cause unhappiness but pursuing
wealth brings nirvana – that’s why it’s beautiful.

I’m convinced, so I’m joining the ‘Movement for Mass
Affluence’, going to make loads of dosh by ‘hiring’ you lot as
skivvies for a fiver an hour, with no health and safety or holidays. Any
questions and you’re sacked. We all need to work together to make me
more money because that makes us all happy. If you don’t know that
you’re a dreamer!
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MX-80 – We’re an American Band
Family Vinyard – CD – 2005

I don’t often notice lyrics but these struck me more than usual.
Although the opening words about a brain transplant, the ultimate in
consumerism ‘giving the brain a new body’, got me a bit, I got into
the sounds. With some good rhythms, melodies and grooves, MX-80
don’t fit easily into any category. The opening tracks have a screaming,
psychedelic guitar, later replaced by a vocal lead and things get more
rhythmically ‘groovy’. Over this are melodies nearly as good as
Caribou – not bad at all.

But it was ‘Christmas with the Devil’ that turned me on to the
words. This should be played beside ‘Nobby’ Holder for yuletide
balance. It’s about the devil coming to stay, shop, buy DVD’s as
prezzies, consume, get pissed, watch ‘Die Hard’, cause trouble
then ‘split and take his beer’ (‘but we know he’ll be back
next year’). So the idea that ‘christmas is the devil’ probably
won’t reach many more lugs than mine.

Other tracks, like ‘Lights Out’, are also in an
anti-‘American-style consumerism’ vein. A piss-take with good
sounds, it’s worth copying for christmas stockings, or any stocking any
time really.
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Blair-ed Vision of the Free Market

Free market orthodoxy now directs and dominates the thinking of
Britain’s social, economic and political elites. The movers and shakers
in academia, the arts and the sciences seek to interpret the whole of nature
in terms of narrow self interest. They apply this to the running of society to
the extent that our leaders now see the market not just as a means of
directing the economy but as a means of directing all aspects of our lives.
Everything is now seen through market-tinted glasses, with all of
society’s ills, from ‘failing’ schools to ‘poor’ parenting,
being solved simply by applying the magic solution of punishment for
failure and reward for success – all tried and tested in the cleansing heat
of competition.

That free market ideas are now all-pervasive in Britain is largely down to
the Labour party. It may have been the Thatcher government that started
the market revolution but in truth Thatcherism was never truly accepted by
much of Britain’s elite, especially the more enlightened elements who
saw her as an uncaring anti-intellectual bigot. Much of the establishment
held their nose and voted for Thatcher as the only means of controlling
union power. In reality they never really accepted her or her methods. It was
not until the arrival of new Labour that one could be open about one’s
free market ideas in polite society. The true success of Labour is that they
have been able to repackage Thatcherism, giving it a caring gloss and a
progressive image, making it acceptable to even the most liberal of the elite.

Labour transformed the free market ideas of Thatcherism from a necessary
evil to break the power of trade unionism into a progressive force for
change. They moved on from attacking the unions to making the state the
true enemy of the people. State provision and regulation were cast as
outdated relics of the grey world of post-war Britain that were holding back
the economy and failing to provide proper public services. They announced
that their mission was to cast aside the dead hand of the state; set free the
dynamism of market forces; and create an advanced economy that would
transform Britain into a shiny, dynamic, forward looking society. Poverty
and ignorance would be a thing of the past.

‘choice’

In 1997 the new Labour government was at pains to stress that, unlike the
class-ridden Tories, it was a truly modernising force that cared passionately
about the poor, the sick and the uneducated. They promised to
revolutionise the public sector making it a true force for change that would
eradicate inequality in health and education. The old style state provision, in
which power lay in the hands of the unions the providers (doctors, teachers,
etc.), would be swept away and patients, parents and other ‘clients’
and ‘customers’ would be given choice and a real say in the
running of services.

Labour’s gloss of fairness and justice ensured they could still be
anti-racist, could still support gay rights and women’s equality, while
spouting an extreme right-wing free market philosophy. This freed the
educated urban elites who now dominate British public life. It allowed them
to mouth platitudes about fighting ignorance and oppression while spending
their ever-increasing incomes. Once capitalism realised that Labour’s
‘third way’ amounted to little more than Thatcherism with a caring
make-over, they too quickly jumped on the bandwagon. Suddenly the likes
of BP cared about the environment; the likes of Richard Branson cared
about workers. Capitalism embarked on a PR exercise to show its caring
nature. Before we knew it Britain’s rich and powerful were denouncing
Thatcherism as a reactionary outdated dogma supported only by a
narrow-minded fox hunting minority.

Behind this progressive spin the reality is different. Despite all the nonsense
about social justice, inequality has grown under Labour to the extent that
the gap between rich and poor has not been as great since Victorian times.
Meanwhile, market deregulation, the jewel in the Labour free market
crown, far from empowering people, is increasingly enslaving them in a
permanent state of job insecurity. Casualisa-tion means that an increasing
section of the workforce is only a text message or a megaphone
announcement away from the sack. The constant fear of the sack created
by labour market deregulation is used by capitalism to drive down wages
and conditions. Britain now boasts an army of low paid workers on
temporary or short-term contracts, who can be hired and fired at will to
meet the day to day needs of capitalism. At the bottom of this pile of
inequality are the very people Labour supposedly came to power to help
– women and ethnic minorities. Their commitment to anti-racism and
women’s equality may be alright for the rich city banker faced with
discrimination but it does not extend to the single mother, the ethnic
minorities or the Polish immigrant – the people who are paying most for
Labour’s much heralded booming free market economy.

creeping privatisation

As for Labour’s plans to put public services under consumer control,
these are little more than creeping privatisation dressed up in
‘modern’ language. Capital spending in schools, housing, railways
and hospitals, is funded by the private sector at enormous cost for future
generations. The private sector is now involved in health care provision to
an extent Thatcher could only have dreamed of. Under Labour whole areas
of public life have been handed over to charities, not-for-profit companies
and, to be frank, religious nutters – organisations run by unaccountable
managers who pay themselves enormous salaries while their workers earn
the minimum wage. This army of managers is joined by that other new elite
– the consultants. Reform of the public sector is now infested by PR
consultants, management consultants and god-knows what other
consultants, who charge vast amounts for their dubious services.

For all Labour’s claptrap about social inclusion and empowerment,
they are creating a dog-eat-dog society in which the better-off use their
in-built advantages to cream off the lion’s share of the riches, whether
that is measured in terms of wealth, health or quality of life. This is paid for
by the rest of us in general and by those at the bottom of society in
particular. Britain has become a low wage, long hours, debt ridden society;
one blighted by growing poverty and increasing social exclusion for a large
minority, who suffer poor health, poor housing and poor education. It is
made worse by having to listen to those who have gained enormously under
Labour’s free market policies, carp on about their concern for the poor
and their abhorrence for all forms of discrimination and inequality.

Not that this is new. The rich have always expressed concern for the poor
and attempted to justify gross inequality by arguing that only the free
market could create the wealth needed for a prosperous society. Under
Labour we are back to the ‘trickle-down’ economics that
dominated British thinking right up to the near collapse of capitalism in the
1930’s. The idea is that the wealth of the fabulously rich somehow
trickles down to enrich society as a whole. The essence of Labour’s
message is that they are creating an enterprise economy in which the
wealth creating sector has to be set free from state regulation and allowed to
make enormous profits that will somehow magically be passed on to the
rest of us.

Measures to ensure that society’s riches are spread more evenly, such
as increased taxation of the better off, are dismissed by the government as
outdated. These apparently act as a disincentive, stifle enterprise and
damage wealth creation. Such arguments belong to the Victorian era but
Labour has given them a modern spin and dressed them up in the language
of ‘social justice’. They are ideas which, over hundreds of years,
led to gross inequality with obscene wealth side by side with grinding
poverty. This was an era in which the rich mill owner spent Sunday in
church expressing concern for the poor and spent the rest of the week
working children to death; an era in which it was argued that poverty had
nothing to do with the way society was organised, but existed because the
poor would not help themselves. The poor were portrayed as godless,
debauched, drunken malingerers to be blamed for their own predicament.
And support for the poor, it was argued, would only be wasted; salvation lay
in starving them back into morally uplifting but non-existent jobs

blame game

Now similar arguments are surfacing. As inequality grows, due to free
market policies, the poor are being blamed more and more for their own
plight. Out of office, Blair and co constantly banged on about the victims of
Thatcher’s evil policies, about how making Britain a more equal society
would be priority number one. But Thatcher can no longer be blamed.
Instead blame is heaped on those at the bottom. The longer Labour is in
office, the less we hear about suffering at the lower reaches of society.
Instead government language increasingly resembles that used in the USA,
where the poor are portrayed as an ignorant lot who would rather watch
daytime TV than go out to work.

This is rapidly becoming the government line here. To hear ministers talk,
poverty, poor heath and lack of education do not result from their polices
but rather from laziness, poor diet and poor parenting. We are returning to
that time-honoured notion of the deserving minority who deserve to be
helped, and a smoking, binge drinking, drug-taking, overweight,
TV-addicted majority who simply abuse the help they get from society. The
explicit message being pushed by the government is that the poor are a
burden in need of a good dose of state coercion to drive them back to work
and to take up their responsibilities as citizens.

That Labour increasingly blames the worse off for their own predicament is
simply a return to the historic way of governing Britain. For centuries
blaming the poor was the traditional explanation for gross inequality;
introducing legislation to penalise the poor was the traditional means of
social control. For thirty years after the second world war, sections of the
ruling class did support very limited redistribution of wealth. But this was
largely due to fear of socialism at home and of the Soviet Union as an
alternative to capitalism abroad. With those threats gone, we have returned
to business as usual. The poor are pilloried and face ever more draconian
legislation. Not that Labour or their hangers on can admit that.
Britain’s social and political elites have always needed a veneer of social
concern to give themselves a sense of respectability; to hide their insatiable
greed and hypocrisy. And Labour is the perfect vehicle for this.
Thatcher’s more honest approach – her clear hatred of the
organised working class and disdain for those at the bottom of society –
proved too crude for many of our cultured betters. Instead, Labour’s
social justice agenda has proved the perfect fig leaf of respectability to
conceal the return to a world where the rich get richer and the rest of us get
poorer.

culture of resistance

In truth, the whole free market agenda, for all its scientific and intellectual
pretensions, is little more than a justification for gross exploitation. That is
why it has always been the philosophy of Britain’s ruling elites. Against
the brutality of the ruling class, it has always been the working class who
have put forward an alternative culture of resistance based on mutual aid,
solidarity and social justice. However, with the defeats and havoc caused by
social and economic change over the last thirty years, this alternative
culture is severely weakened. This has given free market ideas a free rein to
the extent that they increasingly dominate all aspects of society. If this
dominance is to be challenged then the workers movement and the
collective culture upon which it was organised has to be rebuilt. The only
alternative is a world in which those at the top stick together for their own
interests, while the rest of society is increasingly blighted by a dog-eat-dog
system where everyone competes for a share of the dwindling proportion of
society’s riches.
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Aims of the Solidarity Federation

The Solidarity Federation is an organisation of workers which seeks to
destroy capitalism and the state. Capitalism because it exploits, oppresses
and kills people, and wrecks the environment for profit worldwide. The
state because it can only maintain hierarchy and privelege for the classes
who control it and their servants; it cannot be used to fight the oppression
and exploitation that are the consequences of hierarchy and source of
privilege. In their place we want a society based on workers’
self-management, solidarity, mutual aid and libertarian communism.

That society can only be achieved by working class organisation based on
the same principles – revolutionary unions. These are not Trades
Unions only concerned with ‘bread and butter’ issues like pay and
conditions. Revolutionary unions are means for working people to organise
and fight all the issues – both in the workplace and outside – which
arise from our oppression. We recognise that not all oppression is
economic, but can be based on gender, race, sexuality, or anything our
rulers find useful. Unless we organise in this way, politicians – some
claiming to be revolutionary – will be able to exploit us for their own
ends.

The Solidarity Federation consists of locals which support the formation of
future revolutionary unions and are centres for working class struggle on a
local level. Our activities are based on direct action – action by workers
ourselves, not through intermediaries like politicians or union officials –
our decisions are made through participation of the membership. We
welcome all working people who agree with our aims and principles, and
who will spread propaganda for social revolution and revolutionary unions.
We recognise that the class struggle is worldwide, and are affiliated to the
International Workers Association, whose ‘Principles of Revolutionary
Unionism’ we share.
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Direct Action is published by Solidarity Federation, British section of the
International Workers Association (IWA).
DA is edited and laid out by the DA Collective, and printed by Clydeside
Press.
Views stated in these pages are not necessarily those of the Direct Action
Collective or the Solidarity Federation.
We do not publish contributors’ names. Please contact us if you want
to know more.

Subscriptions: (for 4 issues) Supporters – £10; Basic – £5;
(Europe – £10; rest of the world – £15)

To contribute: If you would like to help out or contribute articles or photos,
work is entirely voluntary. We welcome articles of between 500 and 1,500
words on industrial, social/community and international issues; on working
class history; and on anarchist/anarchosyndicalist theory and history.
Articles may be sent as hard copy, on a disk or by email, and can only be
returned if accompanied by a request (and SAE if appropriate).

Contact us

DA Collective, PO Box 29, South West PDO, Manchester, M15 5HW
079 84 67 52 81
da@direct-action.org.uk
Bulk Orders

AK Distribution, PO Box 12766, Edinburgh, EH8 9YE, Scotland
0131 555 5165
ak@akedin.demon.co.uk
www.akuk.com
or direct from the DA Collective

Direct Action
ISSN 0261-8753
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Solidarity Federation

national contact point
PO Box 29, South West PDO, Manchester, M15 5HW
079 84 67 52 81 solfed@solfed.org.uk www.solfed.org.uk

Education Workers Network – c/o Preston; ewn@ewn.org.uk;
www.ewn.org.uk; email list: ewn@lists.riseup.net
Public Service Workers Network – c/o Solidarity Bristol

Birmingham – c/o Northampton (below); 077 76 11 51 97;
brumsf@solfed.org.uk
Solidarity Bristol – c/o SF contact point (above);
solidaritybristol@solfed.org.uk
Edinburgh – c/o 17 West Montgomery Place, Edinburgh, EH7 5HA ;
078 96 62 13 13; edinburghsf@solfed.or.uk
Manchester – PO Box 29, SW PDO, Manchester, M15 5HW; 079 84
67 52 81; manchestersf@solfed.org.uk; www.manchestersf.org.uk; email
list: manchestersf@lists.riseup.net - discussion meetings 8.30 pm, 1st Wed
each month – upstairs Hare & Hounds, Shude Hill, central Manchester
Northampton – c/o The Blackcurrent Centre, 24 St Michael Avenue,
Northampton, NN1 4JQ; northamptonsf@solfed.org.uk
North & East London – PO Box 1681, London, N8 7LE;
nelsf@solfed.org.uk
Preston – PO Box 469, Preston, PR1 8XF; 077 07 25 66 82;
prestonsf@solfed.org.uk; prestonsolfed.mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk
South Herts – PO Box 493, St Albans, AL1 5TW
South London – PO Box 17773, London, SE8 4WX;
southlondonsf@solfed.org.uk
South West – c/o SF contact point (above); sws@solfed.org.uk
West Yorks – PO Box 75, Hebden Bridge, HX7 8WB

Catalyst (SolFed freesheet) – c/o The Blackcurrent Centre, 24 St
Michael Avenue, Northampton, NN1 4JQ; 077 76 11 51 97;
catalyst@solfed.org.uk – issue 14 out soon – for single copies or
bundles see contact details above

SelfEd Collective – c/o Preston; selfed@selfed.org.uk;
www.selfed.org.uk - ‘A History of Anarcho-syndicalism’ – 24
pamphlets, downloadable FREE from www.selfed.org.uk

The Stuff Your Boss does not want you to know - a quick guide to your
rights at work
know your rights at work – bundles available for free/donation from the
SF contact point (see above)
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Friends & Neighbours
to get listed here contact DA – see contact details above

Kate Sharpley Library
(full catalogue: BM Hurricane, London, WC1N 3XX;
www.katesharpleylibrary.net)

Tom Brown – British Syndicalism: pages from labour history (see
review)
Miguel García – Unknown Heroes: biographies of anarchist
resistance fighters – 18 pages – £2
Anna Key – Beating Fascism: anarchist anti-fascism in theory and
practice – 52 pages – £2
Edgar Rodigues – Santos: the Barcelona of Brazil – 16 pages –
£2
Alan O’Toole – With the Poor People of the Earth: a biography of
Dr John Creaghe of Sheffield and Buenos Aires – 32 pages – £2
Leonardos Kottis – Konstantinos Speros: the life and activities of a
Greek anarcho-syndicalist – 11 pages – £2
Umberto Marzocchi – Remembering Spain: Italian anarchist volunteers
in the Spanish civil war – 25 pages – £2

56a Infoshop – bookshop, records, library, archive, social/meeting
space; 56a Crampton St, London, SE17 3AE; open Thur 2-8, Fri 3-7, Sat
2-6.
AK Press – anarcho books and merchandise of every description; PO
Box 12766, Edinburgh, EH8 9YE; 0131 555 265; ak@akedin.demon.co.uk;
www.akuk.com
the Basement – café, bookshop, library, computers, meeting space;
24 Lever St, Manchester; 0161 237 1832; mustsocial@yahoo.co.uk
Freedom – anarchist fortnightly; 84b Whitechapel High St, London, E1
7QX; www.freedompress.org.uk
www.libcom.org – online libertarian community and organising
resource for activists in Britain
Organise! – Working Class Resistance freesheet/info; PO Box 505,
Belfast, BT12 6BQ
Resistance – Anarchist Federation freesheet; c/o 84b Whitechapel High
Street, London, E1 7QX; www.afed.org.uk
Stuff your Boss – anti-casualisation campaign in NW England;
stuffyourboss@lists.riseup.net; SYB, c/o PO Box 29, SW PDO,
Manchester, M15 5HW
ToxCat – exposing polluters, pollution and cover-ups; £2 from PO
Box 29, Ellesmere Port, CH66 3TX
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