All libertarians from the various anarchist movements around the world, and all those interested in learning more about anarchism are invited to gather from August 8-12, 2012 in St-Imier in the Jura mountains in Switzerland.
We will be celebrating the 140th anniversary of the first congress of St-Imier that was held in 1872, when the St-Imier Anarchist International was created after anti-authoritarian members were expelled from the First International.
Historic context: The Jura Federation and the Congress of St-Imier 1872
In 1864, the International Workers Association was founded, quickly followed by sections in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Le Locle, St-Imier and other regions in the Swiss Jura mountains. Many of the members in these sections were working in their homes as watchmakers, were well read, and had an independent spirit. When Bakunin came to the region in 1869, there was an immediate meeting of minds.
As a result of this convergence of ideas, the Jura Federation became the libertarian pole of the First International, opposed to the Marxists. Infuriated by this opposition, Marx did everything he could to eliminate this diverging current. In 1872 he thought that he had achieved that goal. At the Hague Congress he managed to assemble his supporters and with some of his supporters posing as representatives of non-existing sections, managed to get votes passed for the exclusion of Bakunin and James Guillaume, only missing a few votes to do the same to Adhemar Schwitzguebel, which were all delegates from the Jura Federation.
Shocked by these actions, the sections that were sympathetic to the anti-authoritarian current, including Spain, Italy, France, Belgium and the USA, organized a conference in St-Imier, where they passed resolutions that were strongly libertarian. The anti-authoritarian IWA survived the Marxist branch to the end of the century.
140 years after the Congress of St-Imier, the Marxist illusion has dissipated in light of the communist dictatorships. Capitalism lives from crisis to crisis. Social crises, political crises, in addition to the ecological crisis.
Where does the anarchist movement stand today?
The anarchist gathering in St-Imier in 2012 will be an opportunity to review the history of the anarchist movement, its ideas, its achievements, its hopes, its defeats, and its opportunities today; its own battles and those it shares with others: anti-militarism, anti-racism, anti-sexism, autonomous self-management, degrowth, education, feminism, internationalism, non-violence, etc.. A number of workshops and events are already planned: historical lectures, thematic conferences, theater, concerts, exhibitions, films, a book fair, a radio station, a libertarian camp, a self-managed market with organic products, workshops, restaurants, etc..
This international event will be public and wants to be open not only to the entire international anarchist movement, but also to the public at large without discrimination. Free admissions and voluntary pricing will be used wherever feasible, in order to enable as many people as possible to participate in the event. Having said that, the organizing committee will use its discretion to decide which participants will be hosted, based on the ideas and practices that were also the principals of the Anti-authoritarian International. Racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia and all forms of violence and discrimination will not be tolerated.
Based on what has been said, any person, group, or organization is welcome to get involved and join this initiative, suggesting exhibitions, debates, lectures, performances, speakers, workshops, etc..
Why current institutions are ready to hand over to civil society
I will be offering a session on why and how current institutions will hand over responsibility to an empowered civil society. A presentation and workshop on concepts loosely based on the texts
"The Foundation of Democracy"
"The Three Pillars of Democracy",
but going further to explain and discuss how and why decentralization and deliberative democracy will work to replace hierarchy with higher forms of organisation, effectively eliminating the need for laws and shifting away from our culture of decision making to a culture of consensus development.
"This is super exciting, interesting preliminary data, I think. I had one of my students write a computer program that would crawl through Amazon.com and pull 2,500 fiction titles at random. ... The findings are absolutely fascinating."
"We broke these out by decade. ... You would expect that if you can crawl through Amazon looking at only new books and only books sold by Amazon -- so these are not used books, these are not sold by Amazon associates, this is what's in Amazon's warehouses -- of course, the biggest number of books is from the decade 2000-2010. That's what you'd expect; they're more recent, more popular. Drops off really quickly for books in the 1990s, 1980s, 1970s, '60, 1950, 1940, 1930 -- here's the point in time where books start falling in the public domain. Suddenly it goes up and up and up. There's as many books [that] Amazon is selling brand new right now from the 1900s to 1910 as from the 2000s to 2010. You go all the way back to 1850 -- there's twice as many books from the 1850s being sold on Amazon right now as the 1950s. So this sort of confirms the notion that there's some sort of positive public-domain effect ..."
With todays launch of the Adobe Creative Cloud, something I have been dreaming of for more than the past 20 years is becoming a reality in a big way!
With the Creative Cloud subscriptions now offered by Adobe, the creative professionals have access to a toolbox of all the software they may need for any given project, without that the hurdle of an upfront startup investment to obtain that toolbox. Essentially, you can rent the tools you need for any given project. This is a fantastic new reality that levels the playing field for individual creatives vs larger agencies, allowing individual creatives to leverage their diverse range of skills and put them to work for their customers.
Adobe's Creative Cloud doesn't just offer access to the range of software in its Creative Suite, it also provides additional services that reinvent the creative process and empower the creatives to unleash their full potential! This is not marketing speech! I'm serious! It's like joining a franchise network that provides you with a major productivity boost, for a monthly fee that makes it possible to get started even with the smallest of projects.
Tune into the live online event for the release of Adobe Creative Cloud and CS6 today at 19:00 CET here:
"[...] Die verblüffenden Fähigkeiten vieler Tiere, die die relativ junge Forschungsrichtung der vergleichenden Kognitionsforschung seither nachgewiesen hat, lassen nur einen Schluss zu: Wir sind nicht die einzigen klugen Wesen auf der Welt."
"In Japan gehen Krähen noch einen Schritt weiter und lassen andere die Arbeit für sich tun. Sie werfen Nüsse auf die Straße und warten, bis ein Auto darüber fährt und die harte Schale knackt. Weil es auf einer vielbefahrenen Straße nicht ganz ungefährlich ist, sich anschließend das Innere der Nuss zu holen, haben sich einige der Vögel auf Fußgängerampeln spezialisiert. Sie warten, bis die Ampel den Autoverkehr anhält, und holen sich dann in aller Ruhe ihr Futter."
"[...] Dies zeigt aber auch, wie vorsichtig man sein sollte, wenn man einem Tier eine bestimmte Empfindung zuschreibt oder sein Verhalten zu erklären versucht. Ein Hund lebt nun einmal in einer anderen Welt, einer Welt aus Gerüchen, und eine Fledermaus besitzt mit ihrem Ultraschall-Ortungssystem gar einen Sinn, den wir nicht einmal ansatzweise nachvollziehen können. Der amerikanische Philosoph Thomas Nagel hat das so ausgedrückt: Es kommt nicht darauf an, wie es sich für uns anfühlen würde, eine Fledermaus zu sein, sondern wie es sich für die Fledermaus anfühlt, eine Fledermaus zu sein. Und dafür muss man nun mal eine Fledermaus sein."
Your email address:
The "Decentralize" Newsletter
Exchanging ideas for building a
decentralized fabric of society.
Making true democracy work on a larger
scale while decentralizing "everything",
benefiting from local diversity and
global synergies at the same time.