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Fifth Estate Collective
Issue intro

Welcome to the fourth Fifth Estate of 2002!!

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We have not published four issues in one year since the late 1980s. As much as any of our magazines this year, this edition represents the contribution of many heads, hearts, and hands in our ever-evolving collective.

Although we love the front cover art of May Thistle, its symbology may threaten the penology of the department of corrections in the state of Oregon. According to notices we’ve received from prison officials, anarchism’s classic circle-A is a dangerous gang symbol!

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Fifth Estate Collective
Masthead

Fifth Estate

FIFTH ESTATE #359, Winter, 2002–2003, Vol. 37, No. 4

The Fifth Estate (FE) is a cooperative, nonprofit project, publishing since 1965. As opposed to professionals who publish to secure wages or invest in the information industry, our collective consists of volunteer writers, artists, and editors—friends who produce the paper as an expression of resistance to an unjust and destructive society.

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MaxZine Weinstein
Remembering Harry Hay

Harry Hay, Father of the Gay rights movement, died this October at the age of 90. Harry founded the Mattachine Society in 1950, the first gay rights organization in the United States. He was kicked out a few years later because of his Communist Party affiliation. In 1979 he co-founded the Radical Faeries, a loose-knit, anarchistic, back-to-the-land spiritual/radical/irreverent movement. We came to know him and love him through our Friendships developed at faerie gatherings.

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Various Authors
Stop the War but don’t stop there

Editors’ Note: The following excerpts come from subversive anti-war flyers distributed at mass demonstrations; the first comes from an FE collective member in Tennessee, the second from the Chicago Surrealists, and the third from comrades in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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The new ultra-right doctrine of global domination that Bush has made his mantra is seen by some liberals as dramatic deviance from American principles. However, while imperial chickenhawk cowboys killing children and reaping the military-industrial profits may seem distasteful to most, it resembles American foreign policy verbatim since the dawn of the last century. Throughout the 1900s, the monsters of money and might wrought misery for millions.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Tales from the Planet

Resistance to Genocide

While some celebrated the 510th anniversary of Columbus’s arrival in the western hemisphere, thousands of others protested his legacy of genocide and enslavement. In Chiapas, more than 50 peasant and civil organizations organized 12 roadblocks. In Colorado, in opposition to an annual Italian (white) pride pro-Columbus march, AIM mobilized nearly 2500 people to march from the four directions with red, black, yellow and white flags to the state capitol to “Transform Columbus Day”, while hundreds of anarchists confronted the parade in solidarity. In Arizona and Sonora, 250 people marched on the U.S./Mexico border to show their opposition to border policies, the takeover and separation of indigenous lands, and the subjugation of indigenous people. Native Americans and others converged on Washington, DC where someone defaced a statue of Columbus.

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john johnson
A Fine Autumn Weekend In DC A brief report on the latest scuffle with the forces of globalization and their security apparatus

Once again the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund scaled back big annual meetings in DC in the face of popular opposition. Folks from the DC Anti-Capitalist Convergence organized a People’s Strike for Friday, September 27th. The call was out for affinity groups to engage in- autonomous actions to disrupt business as usual for the ruling elites in DC. Many DC commuters stayed home, so traffic was light. There were probably 1000 radicals in the streets, and a large critical mass clogged up some traffic. However, the 3700 pigs were very well organized, and any time they caught up with a large group, they corralled protesters with bikes, motorcycles and armor clad storm troopers.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Anti-War Momentum Builds

In the face of a seemingly inevitable campaign driven by the capitalists and their warmongering politicians, anti-war sentiment around the globe continues to grow. As resistance diversifies and broadens in political scope, fresh faces appear in the streets, voicing a firm rejection of the rulers’ policies.

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john johnson
Tennescene

Long time readers of the Fifth Estate will remember the section called “Detroit Seen” which brought news from the radical scene in Detroit. We hope to continue “scene” reports in the new incarnation of the Fifth Estate.

Howdy y’all! (The Eco-Anarcho-Communalist Faction of the Society for the Preservation of the Good Parts of Southern Culture officially declares “y’all” a new, non-sexist alternative for addressing groups. People who still say “you guys” are obviously not concerned with preservation of our fine language, or worse, they are yankees.)

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David Solnit
Argentina’s Popular Rebellion Que se vayan todos...Out with them all!

The neighbors had broken into and occupied the bank building as I arrived in Parque Lezama. Middle aged and scruffy young activists carried out debris, scrubbed windows and floors and hung banners with the name of their assemblia popular and another that said “We are nothing. We want to be everything.”

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Patricio McCabe
Argentina’s New Forms of Struggle Direct Democracy, Popular Assemblies, & Self-Management

In the late 1990s in Argentina, a new form of struggle emerged from the unemployed workers (who make up 20% of the people while another 20% are underemployed). This expression of resistance came from the provinces to the capital of the country and consisted of blocking roads to claim a subsidy for unemployment. Blocking roads has its origin with the well-known workers’ tactic called “piquete” (picket). It consisted of people preventing the entrance of scabs who were trying to break the strike. Its goal was to prevent production in support of the workers’ demands. Today, thrown out from production, the unemployed block the transportation of merchandise to support their demands. Not only is this blocking of circulation novel, but so is their organizational practice: direct democracy.

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John Jordan
Jennifer Whitney

From Economic Meltdown to Grassroots Rebellion An eyewitness account

The Tin Pot Insurrection

December the 19th was the turning point, the day when the Argentinean people said “enough!” The stage was set the day before, when people began looting shops and supermarkets, so they could feed their families. The president, Fernando De La Rua, panicked. De La Rua declared a state of emergency, suspending all constitutional rights, and banning meetings of more than three people. That was the last straw. Not only did it bring back traumatic memories of the seven year military dictatorship which killed over 30,000 people, but also it meant that the state was taking away the last shred of dignity from a hungry and desperate population — their freedom.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Global Days of Social Disobedience for Argentina to Celebrate Creative Alternatives to the Dictatorship of the Markets

Groups in Argentina and across the globe are calling for global days of Action to demonstrate that those who are building alternatives to the dictatorship of the markets are not alone. On the 20th of December, a day when tens of thousands will take to the streets of Argentina to celebrate the first anniversary of last years’ uprising, actions and events will take place across the world in solidarity with the people of Argentina.

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John Jordan
Jennifer Whitney

Postscript for the anti-capitalist movement

Argentina may well prove to be the crisis which irrevocably splits the ever-widening crack in the neoliberal armor, especially if things continue to unravel in other parts of Latin America. Recent events in Venezuela, and the possibility of left wing gains in this year’s Brazilian presidential elections, point to a shift away from the “Washington Consensus” across much of the region.

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Ron Sakolsky
Tuning in to the Media Dreamscape

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This article’s author, Ron Sakolsky (right) and another radical media activist protest corporate broadcasters, September 2002. Photo by Brad.
Introduction

From September 10–15, the Cascadia Media Alliance hosted a Reclaim The Media Convergence in Seattle. Held during the week of the annual convention of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), this occasion was an opportunity to protest the corporate-driven policies of the NAB/FCC/NPR triumvirate, as well as to gather for our own grassroots shadow convention. Community media activists from all over North America descended upon Seattle to hear speakers, do workshops, strategize and bounce off each others’ creative energy. By the end of the convergence 10 free radio stations had been set up just 2 band widths apart on the FM dial in open defiance of the censorious 3 bandwidth low power fm requirement of the FCC. This rule has in effect created a situation in which LPFM stations are not legally feasible in urban areas like Seattle. The eclectic programming mix of these pirate stations featured everything from guerrilla radio broadcasts of the FCC actually battering down the doors of Free Radio Austin, to a satirical piece about Clear Channel by Mark Hosier of Negativland, to a series of 3 minute airplay spots on the subject of “media and democracy.” I was invited to kick off the week’s events with a presentation at the Seattle IMC. Focusing on the affinities between anarchism and surrealism in relation to media activism. My talk, upon which the following article is based, consciously avoided the self-congratulatory approach of keynote speakers David Barsamian and Amy Goodman, and instead sought to raise thorny strategic questions for anarchists involved in the media democracy movement.

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Sunfrog (Andy “Sunfrog” Smith)
Anarchy & the Spirit an introduction

“For those who would see directly into essential nature, the idea of the sacred is a delusion & abstraction: it diverts us from seeing what is before our eyes: plain thusness. No hierarchy, no equality. No occult & exoteric, no gifted kids a slow achievers. No wild & tame, no bound & free, no natural a artificial. Each totally its own frail self. Even though connected all which ways; even because connected all which ways. This, thusness, is the nature of the nature of nature. The wild in wild.”

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Max Cafard
Anarchapters Zhuangzi’s Crazy Wisdom & Da(o)da(o) Spirituality

The following essay is a slightly abridged version of a longer work that will appear in Max Cafard’s forthcoming book: The Surregionalist Manifesto and Other Essays, to be published by Exquisite Corpse (and available through FE).

“Wander where there is no trail. Hold on to all that you have received from Heaven, but do not think that you have gotten anything. Be empty, that is all.”

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Gary Snyder
Buddhist Anarchism

Buddhism holds that the universe and all creatures in it are intrinsically in a state of complete wisdom, love and compassion; acting in natural response and mutual interdependence. The personal realization of this from-the-beginning state cannot be had for and by one-“self’ because it is not fully realized unless one has given the self up; and away.

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Peter Lamborn Wilson
Spiritual Anarchism Topics for research

“Cowper came to me and said: ‘O that I were insane always. I will never rest. Can you not make me truly insane? I will never rest till I am so. O that in the bosom of God I was hid. You retain health and yet are as mad as any of us all—over us all—mad as a refuge from unbelief—from Bacon, Newton and Locke.’”

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Lea Wood
The Spirit of Global Justice Book review

a review of

Webs of Power, Notes from the Global Uprising by Starhawk. New Society Publishers, 2002. 288 pages $17.95 (available from FE Books)

This book is a must read for understanding the revolution of our time. Anarchist, feminist, pagan—Starhawk speaks to everyone who has been on the barricades, actively or supportively, against the multinationals working to maximize their control over our lives. This is the story of the anti-globalization movement since Seattle 1999 when we exposed the WTO and its corporate agenda to the media spotlight.

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Don LaCoss
Howling Wilderness and the Promised Land

In mid-August, a three year-old lawsuit charging that environmentalist groups were religious extremists comparable to some of the more violent, intolerant ultra-orthodox Islamic sects collapsed when the attorney failed to meet a re-filing deadline with the U.S. Supreme Court.

The suit had been brought against Forest Guardians, the Superior Wilderness Action Network, and the U.S. Forest Service by the 125 companies that make up the Associated Contract Loggers (A.C.L.) of northern Minnesota. The loggers were asking for $600,000 in damages and permission to plunder timber from the Superior National Forest.

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MaxZine Weinstein
Anarcho-spirituality and its Discontents A Personal Reflection

“What is inflated too much will burst into fragments.”

—Ethiopian proverb

“Spiritual zombies no longer hear their inner guide.”

—Alice Walker

In 1986, at the Haymarket anniversary anarchist gathering in Chicago, I landed in a “radical ritual.”

We’re told that we would start by calling in the directions. They get to West and call in the spirits of the water. We are just blocks from Lake Michigan. This body of water has nothing to do with the West because it sits to the East! I point this out and am shushed with comments about “tradition” and “how things are done”. That moment helps define me as an anarcho-disillusionist, brought on by the anarcho-superstitionists who wanted me to accept some important tradition.

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Witch Hazel
Who will tell the people? an interview with David Rovics

In mid October, I met up with radical songwriter David Rovics on the US Out of Colombia roadshow. He and his singing partner Allie Rosenblatt provided a musical backdrop to this powerful traveling presentation, which featured a descriptive slideshow and a talk by Colombian labor organizer William Mendoza.

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MaxZine Weinstein
Bikes Not Cars!

a review of

Critical Mass: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration Edited by Chris Carlsson. AK Press, 2002, 256 pp. $18.95

Hop on a bike. Head downtown. Reclaim the streets. It is a critical mass of bicyclists boldly pedaling through public space with a festive challenge to car culture.

Critical Mass: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration, is a collection of articles, photos and graphics published on the occasion of the ten year anniversary of Critical Mass. CM started as a monthly group bicycle outing in San Francisco and has spread around the world. The breadth of writings show many reasons people participate in Critical Mass rides: adventure, community, to protest pollution, to challenge authority, and to demonstrate against wars for oil.

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sandorkraut
Peace Bikers Use Pedal Power to Shut Down the SOA

Three Tennessee activists bicycled back roads through Tennessee and Georgia for more than a week to join the annual demonstration to shut the School of the Americas (SOA), held in Columbus, Georgia, each November. The SOA is a U.S. government school dedicated to teaching Latin American military forces combat skills; thousands of its graduates have been implicated in horrific forms of state terrorism throughout Latin America. We biked 360 miles to the SOA from the neighboring queer communities where we live, IDA (MaxZine and TomFoolery) and Short Mountain Sanctuary (Sandorkraut) in middle Tennessee.

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Okra P. Dingle
Printed Oddities & Human Curiosities Revolt at 65 mph

The Autonomadic Bookmobile is an independent press bookstore and Info-Shop on wheels. It has spent a good part of the last year touring the US, visiting over a hundred cities, covering over 50,000 miles. The Bookmobile supports small, independent and radical publishers of books, zines, newspapers and pamphlets, against the corporate hegemony on printed matter and ideas by chain bookstores and distributors.

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Various Authors
Letters to the Fifth Estate

Fifth Estate Letters Policy

We welcome letters commenting on our articles, ones stating opinions, or reports from your area. We can’t print every letter we receive, but each is read by our staff and considered for publication.

Letters via email or on disk are appreciated, but type- or handwritten ones are acceptable. Length should not exceed two double spaced pages. If you are interested in writing a longer response, please contact us.

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Sarah White
Beyond panic, controversy & taboo Levine’s enlightened look at kids & sex

a review of

Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex. Judith Levine. University of Minnesota Press, 2002.

Before Judith Levine’s Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex (2002) was even published, many people were out in force condemning the book. Minnesota House Majority Leader and Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim Pawlenty called the book “trash.” E-mails and phone calls to the University of Minnesota Press admonished the publishers to “burn in hell.” Neither considerations of free speech nor the fact that Pawlenty and other critics had read only a couple of chapter excerpts restrained them from pressuring U of M Press to stop publication. The Press continued with publication, but the University of Minnesota, which provides less than six percent of the Press’s funding, initiated an external review of the Press to evaluate its publishing criteria.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Bookstore in a Barn Infoshop, gallery & mail order

Send check, money order, or well-concealed cash to:

Fifth Estate Books

PO Box 6

Liberty, TN 37095

Please add $2 shipping/handling for first item ($1 for the 2nd, .50 for the third, & so on).

All book orders include a sampling of free ‘zines & assorted propaganda! We carry current issues of the Earth First! Journal, Slingshot; Clamor, & Crimethinc’s latest Fighting for Our Lives!

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Fifth Estate Collective
Brief reviews

Free Free Now

a review of

Let’s Get Free: a zine about Jeff “Free” Luers: Earth Defender, Anarchist, and Political Prisoner 11x17, 28 pages. Order for $5 (postage paid) from Break the Chains (checks made out to “Howl For Freedom”, and well concealed cash only) POB 11331 Eugene, OR 97440

Let’s Get Free is a new zine created by the Defense Network for ELF prisoner Jeff “Free” Luers. Serving a 22 year sentence for burning 2 SUVs in the summer of ’00, Free continues to fight for his freedom through the legal system, and to speak out for the liberation of all life. This zine is a major forum for Free’s writings, and a useful introduction to his case and his motivations for those who are just learning about radical eco-defense. The zine features reprints of mainstream media reports, letters and op-eds (some by Free himself), Free’s poetry, personal letters of support from Lorenzo Ervin and Grand Jury resistor Josh Harper, and an interview between Free and another Oregon anarchist prisoner, Rob “Los Ricos” Thaxton.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Radical Calendar 2003

Please send calendar events to the Fifth Estate keeping in mind our quarterly schedule. We are especially interested in events for the Spring and Summer of ’03 to be published in our next edition.

fifthestatenewspaper@yahoo.com

PO Box 6

Liberty, TN 37095

December 21—(Winter Solstice) Everywhere. You are invited to join a national mobilization of creative, autonomous local acts of resistance to the war at shopping malls around the country on the last Saturday before Xmas. We encourage invasion of shopping malls across the country to disallow business as usual and tell consumers, “Stop the buying! Stop the dying!” For more info: tcap@mutualaid.org

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Fifth Estate Collective
Announcements

Calling all radical photographers and graphic designers...

A radical publishing project, “We are Everywhere: the irresistible rise of global anti-capitalism,” is being put together by a collective of activists, artists and writers. We are looking for more photographs, street art and posters/flyers for the book. The book will celebrate, document, explore and critique the recent rise of the global movement(s) against capitalism and for life, autonomy, land, dignity and justice.

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John Jordan
Jennifer Whitney

Back cover text

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From the text of the Puppetista Street Theater pageant at the School of the Americas action, November 16–17, 2002.

the people of Argentina

freed their imagination

and made a situation where change is near

their example makes the alternatives clear

neighborhood assemblies

direct democracy and

worker control of factories

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