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MAYDAY2K: Carnival Against Capitalism

(NOTE: Scoop will be posting a series of materials and reports on Mayday2K over the coming months - either in the Headlines Wire or the General wire. The Mayday 2000 global action is being organised on the internet in a decentralised fashion and follows in the tradition of the N30 demonstrations in Seattle. The following is a brief introduction taken from the M1 news list. )

Mayday 2000
Global Day of Action, Resistance and Carnival against Capitalism


(information as of January 24, 2000)


May 1 this year will be the next Global Day of Action against Capitalism. Already, many groups around the world are preparing for this event, in recognition that the capitalist system, based on the exploitation of people, societies and the environment for the profit of a few, is the prime cause of our social and ecological troubles. May 1 will offer a perfect symbolic and real opportunity to build up our struggles against it. Activists in New York are planning to close down Wall Street, and in London there will be a four-day long carnival against capitalism. Other major cities involved are Sydney (Australia), Toronto (Canada), Manchester (England), Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New Orleans, and Washington (USA). The international contacts list, which is growing every day, now includes groups and coalitions in more than 20 cities around the world. In addition, May 1 has been endorsed as a Day of Action by the Peoples' Global Action (PGA) international conference in India in August.

The May 1 Global Day of Action proceeds from the successes of the previous global Days of Action against Capitalism on June 18 and November 30 last year, and expands on them in the same spirit. Through those Days our networks grew, we learned much, and we saw many new people engage themselves. May 1 will continue this process of building up a strong, bold, and creative grassroots movement for a society in which people do not exploit or oppress each other, communities or the environment, but one that is based on solidarity, co-operation, grassroots democracy, and ecological sustainability.

As on previous occasions, people of different movements and different countries will join forces on this day against the social, political, and economic institutions of the capitalist system. Workers, the unemployed, students, trade unionists, peasants, the landless, fishers, women groups, ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples, peace activists, environmental activists, ecologists, and so on will work in solidarity with one another in the understanding that their various struggles are not isolated from each other. The simultaneous occupation and transformation of the capitalist social order around the globe - in the streets, neighbourhoods, fields, factories, offices, commercial centres, financial districts, and so on - will strengthen mutual bonds at the local, national, and international levels.

As before, the day will be organised in a non-hierarchical way, as a decentralised and informal network of grassroots groups that employ non-authoritarian, grassroots democratic forms of organisation, struggle independent of the social, political, and economic institutions of the capitalist system, and seek to effect change directly through their own action. Each event or action will be organised autonomously by each group, while coalitions of various movements and groups can be formed at the local, regional, and national levels. A strategy that may be useful at the local level is that various groups co-operate in creating a surrounding atmosphere of carnival and festivity as a setting for their various actions.

Examples of conceivable actions are:

strikes - demonstrations critical mass bike rides carnivals street parties reclaiming streets, government land or office buildings for non-commersial and good activities marches music dancing speeches handing out flyers banner hangings distributing community controlled newspapers street theatre building gardens handing out free food mock trade fairs offering no interest loans outside major banks solidarity actions pickets occupations of offices blockades and shutdowns appropriating and disposing of luxury consumer goods sabotaging, wrecking, or interfering with capitalist infrastructure appropriating capitalist wealth and returning it to the working people declaring oneself independent from capitalism and authoritarian governments setting up grassroots' community councils and holding meetings outside city halls setting up economic alternatives, like workers' co-operatives promoting economic alternatives to capitalist companies promoting grassroots based forms of community organisation

If you or your group plan to join this day of action, please let others know as soon as possible, to facilitate networking and communication. There are several international mailing lists available for open discussions and co-ordination (see below). A public international contacts list is regularly posted to them in order to facilitate decentralized and non-hierarchic networking. To have your contact information added to it, please contact tcjohans@hotmail.com,
indicating
(a) the country and location in which you plan to take action, plus any other information you see fit, for instance
(b) the name of your group, coalition or yourself,
(c) the events or actions being planned,
(d) your land address,
(e) email address,
(f) telephone number,
(g) fax number or
(h) web site.

There are many things we need to do, to make the best of May 1 at the global, local, and national levels. We need to spread information about it among as many suitable groups and movements as possible. We need to spread and share propaganda materials, such as leaflets and posters. And, in general, we need to share our experiences, thoughts and ideas with one other and help each other out. At the local level, information about the day needs to be spread and discussed among groups and individuals, meetings need to be organised, events planned, leaflets printed and distributed, funds raised, laughter and conversation shared.

The process of building up our movements can and should be continued through further global days of action against capitalism in the future. A suitable occasion that has been proposed for next time, after Mayday, may be September 27-28, 2000, because of the annual meeting between the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank taking place in Prague, Czech Republic at that time.

Any 'inquiries' or concerns about the Mayday global day of action should be directed to other activists in the group, city, country or on the various mailing lists, for us to mutually help each other with ideas and advise. There is noone in charge or pulling the strings for the day. It will be a radically decentralised and non-hierarchic event entirely of our own creation in co-operation and solidarity with one another.

NEEDED: Translators !!! To make Mayday information available in every language, now especially German, Russian, Arabic, Dutch, Chinese, Hindi, Urdu, Polish, Italian, Greek, Indonesian, Swedish and Thai.

.

MAILING LISTS (DISCUSSION AND CO-ORDINATION):

ENGLISH (International discussion list)
mayday2k@onelist.com. Join at www.onelist.com/subscribe/mayday2k, or send a blank email to mayday2k-subscribe@onelist.com.

PORTUGUESE (International discussion list)
n30-pt@listserv.fct.unl.pt. Join by sending a message with the text "subscribe n30-pt" to majordomo@listserv.fct.unl.pt.

NORTH AMERICA (continental discussion list)
pga-org@lists.tao.ca To join, send a message to lists@tao.ca. In the body of the message, include the following two lines:
subscribe pga-org
end

UNITED KINGDOM (national discussion list)
mayday2000@egroups.com. Join by sending a blank email to mayday2000-subscribe@egroups.com.

IRELAND (national discussion list)
Join by sending a blank email to no_wto-subscribe@onelist.com.

SOUTHWEST USA (regional discussion list)
ArizonaDirectAction@onelist.com . To join, send a blank email to ArizonaDirectAction-subscribe@onelist.com or go to www.onelist.com/subscribe/ArizonaDirectAction.

Please do set up a list for your own language, country or city, if you feel it is needed!

NEWS GROUPS:

MAYDAY 2000 NEWS GROUP (international news group)
Information surrounding Mayday 2000. (2-4 mess./week) To join, send an empty email message to globalaction-news-subscribe@onelist.com.

WEB SITES WITH MAYDAY INFORMATION:

International Lobster Party www.lobster1.dircon.co.uk/
Protest.Net http://m1.protest.net
Mid-Atlantic Infoshop http://ww.infoshop.org/mayday2000.html
WTO Caravan (Canada) http://wtocaravan.org/mayday2k/
Mayday Seattle http://members.xoom.com/maydayseattle
Mayday 2000 in London http://www.freespeech.org/mayday2k/
Manchester May Day 2000 http://www.mayday2000.fsnet.co.uk
AMR Helsinki http://www.dlc.fi/~ravelre/m1/index.html

REFERENCES:

J18 www.infoshop.org/june18.html or www.j18.org

N30 http://go.to/n30 or www.seattlewto.org/n30

Peoples' Global Action (PGA)
www.go.to/agp or www.agp.org/agp/index.html or contact pga@agp.org

Prague, Czech Republic, September 27-28, 2000
www.bankwatch.org or www.mmf2000.webjump.com

Please spread this message widely to sympathetic grassroots groups, communities, and individuals! Translate if advisable.

Let's make this the strongest show of solidarity and resistance yet!

ENDS

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