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(en) UK, New Manchester Social Centre Kickstart, 28.11.2003 19:12

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Sat, 29 Nov 2003 09:52:58 +0100 (CET)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
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Kickstart Cafe is a new squat cafe in Manchester! It opens tomorrow
There will be tea and coffee, vegan food, library and info, art space,
and many
activities. In the evening from 7pm there will be an accoustic jam so bring
along instruments and later some chilled out chunes. Be warned though it
be a late night and we won't be selling alcohol.
Loads of people are needed for cleaning, painting, cooking, putting on
workshops, films, poetry, music, etc. etc. or just come and enjoy the
We still need a tea urn & any donations of paint or cleaning materiel
would be
very appreciated. Plus we need someone to come plumb in the sink.

Kickstart Cafe is on Liverpool Rd. off Deansgate (near Deansgate train
and the big metal bike). Get in touch if you have something specific you
like to offer:

e-mail: kickstart@shortcutz.org.uk

From their web page: http://www.shortcutz.org.uk/

Direct Action

Direct action is about changing the world yourself, not asking a
politician or other leader to do it for you. Direct action is used by
environmentalists, anti-capitalists, animal rights activists, anti-Nazis,
feminists.... When you take direct action you discover how powerful
you are, and you can begin to create the world you want to live in.

No leaders
Many of the groups involved in direct action reject the idea of leaders.
They believe that everyone involved should have the right to
participate in decision making and control their actions. Working
without leaders can mean it takes longer to make decisions, but it also
means everyone takes responsibility for their actions and is in control
of their own life.

Breaking the law
Taking direct action often involves breaking the law and on occasion
arrest. It goes against everything you are brought up to believe but you
soon realise that in many cases the law acts in the interests of the
privileged and wealthy, and that your actions can be morally right and
illegal at the same time. Fear is the thing that holds most of us back
from most of our wildest dreams once you overcome your fear of
arrest anything is possible.
My body the hand grenade
Your body is the greatest weapon you have. You can use it to stop a
train full of arms dealers, to remove genetically modified crops or to
prevent a Palestinian family being targeted by the Israeli military. Be
brave and realise how powerful a simple action can be.

Tools for taking direct action
Want to take action on something but don’t know where to start?
Take a look at the Non-Violent Direct Action Toolbox online at
www.uhc-collective.org.uk. It’s got advice on making consensus
decisions, organising in groups without leaders, legal matters, looking
after yourself and practical tools for taking action.

Corporations suck.. like big time
No really, corporations do suck. Some might say that there are good
corporations and bad ones but really they are all the same. The
primary reason for their existence, as defined in law in fact, is to
maximise profits for shareholders. So if that means exploiting Third
World sweatshop labour they will, if it means using mechanically
recovered meat in burgers they will, if it means lobbying for the
invasion of an oil rich Middle Eastern country they will. They are part
of a global system of exploitation which acts against the interests of
the majority; destroying the environment and impoverishing the world.
It is because of this role that many direct action campaigns target
compaines. But activists often don’t just want to reform the way
corporations act, they want to remove them completely.
The corporate system is just one of many ways we could work, live
and exchange goods. There are others which act for the good of
everyone: co-operatives, unions, societies and local exchanges. To
find out more about the activities of corporations log on to
www.corporatewatch.org.uk To find out more about solutions visit the
New Economics Foundation for a good starting point or the Social
Enterprise project at Merci.

Action on Oil Wars!
Taking action can be scary but it can also be really empowering.
Here’s one person’s account of an action they took part in.
A few days before the war on Iraq officially started, a handful of
people walked straight past reception and into the International
Petroleum Exchange trading floor. Dressed in suits and looking like
business people, the receptionist was taken by surprise and unable to
stop us as we ran onto the trading floor, letting off foghorns to disrupt
trading. Much to our surprise, the Essex boy traders cheered us on as
one of us climbed to hang an anti-war banner over the share index
display, while others pulled out phone lines and computer cables and 3
people barricaded themselves in an executive’s office.
Trading was brought to a standstill as havoc ensued. Most of us
simply walked away, although 3 people were arrested and later
released without any charges. Even after they’d got us all out of
the building it had to be evacuated so they could search the premises
in case we’d left anything behind (we hadn’t, of course). No
oil got traded that day! The Evening Standard reported £1.5million
lost profits, the New York petroleum exchange was on high security
alert and a few days later people in San Francisco, inspired by our
action, stormed the petroleum exchange there.
This is one of the most fun and inspiring actions I’ve ever been on:
the sheer power of walking into where people are creating and
profiting from war and stopping them, messing up their equipment and
costing them loads of money simply cannot be beaten!

Face it - your politics are boring as fuck
(or choose your allies wisely)
OK, so you want to find a way into politics, and the first thing you are
presented with is a bunch of seemingly well meaning people thrusting
petitions, papers, and membership forms at you. Whatever they call
themselves - Trotskyists, Leninists, Marxists, Socialists - they share
a common theme of hierarchy and dogmatism, in which new members
are not encouraged to think and act for themselves, but are expected
to follow the “party line”. Their aim is to recruit to their party,
so that one day they may be big enough to lead us all to the
“revolution”. Many people have joined these leftist parties,
only to become disillusioned and fed up with politics altogether. Learn
from their lesson - steer clear of these boring fuckwits!

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