It is with great sadness that I write to inform you that Sam Mbah has died. He died on November 6 2014, of complications arising from his heart condition. His recovery had appeared to be going well, but then a crisis arose and he was rushed to hospital. He died a short time later.
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The last Fire to the Prisons magazine came out in the Spring of 2011 as the Arab Spring was unfolding. Since then, we saw the rise and fall of Occupy, the unfolding anti-police rebellion in Ferguson, MI, as well as riots, strikes, and occupations from Hong Kong to Mexico, Brazil to Canada, France to Chile, Spain to Syria.
Effectively communicating our messages is also a way to counter what I call “brand anarchy,” where businesses/media appropriate the ideas and sell them back as rebellious alternatives within mainstream culture. As the ideas of anarchism have been popularized and coopted, a split set of narratives has developed.
But pacifism is not the only dimension that this would apply to, anarchists in general have this zealous notion of the purity of the political. They are dismissive of anybody who defines themselves as being part of a national liberation movement, without examining that movement in any coherent way. When someone sits down and talks with them about it, well then their objections evaporate. But they won’t abandon the purity of whatever the particular posture is that they’re occupying long enough to become effective.
Anarchists are some of the most interesting people out there—we wreak havoc in the streets, we innovate new social phenomena like Occupy and Twitter, and we participate in some downright bizarre subcultures. So, it should be no surprise that anarchists, and our projects, continually make the news.
This text was written as an answer to our foreign friends' questions about situation in the Eastern Ukraine and Russian anarchists' attitude towards that. We hope it will be of use to everybody interested in these matters. The situation is complex and controversial and you should understand that the text below does not (and can't) reflect the opinion of all Russian anti-fascists and anti-capitalists. We discussed this within our group, but even here we have a couple of contradicting points of view.
Summer has come to a close. This summer was delayed for us as our Spring books took a little longer than we would have liked to be completed (here is looking at you Dictionary of Unhappiness) but otherwise was surprisingly busy. Usually summers are very slow for LBC but not this year. Is this a sign of interesting times ahead?
The trade union for public and welfare services (JHL) went on wildcat strike to oppose the "marketization" of Palmia, a municipally-owned service enterprise. Right-wing leadership of the city attempts to reorganise 50% of Palmia so that it must participate to tenders, which will lead to substantial wage cuts for the workers. The seizure of subway and tram transport by striking workers proved to be a powerful weapon in the struggle against the bosses. However, the Helsinki Regional Transport Authority (HSL) organized replacement transportation to nullify its effect. Anarchists announced that they will block all the replacement buses and soon after that AKT (the union of bus drivers, amongst others) announced a strike on those routes.
We are writing as the crew that organized the North American ABC Conference, in response to JoNina and Lorenzo's public letter "Racism at the NA ABC Conference.” We are nine people spread across the country, from New York to Sacramento, in conjunction with Denver ABC, and as such have a range of views on their open letter. This response is not a full statement of all of those views, or even a consensus of what things we all agree on, but rather a response required to urgently address the letter and to clarify information within it. This statement is NOT to discredit, disqualify, disregard, or fault JoNina and Lorenzo for their experience(s). The information provided is correct to the best of our account, and is provided for the purpose of transparency.