Fifth Estate Collective
Tales from the Planet
The on-again, off-again first Mexican anarchist gathering is apparently on again with its dates set for Sept. 14–16, 1991. It will be held in Ocotepec, Morelos near Cuernavaca at El Centro de Investigacion Accion Communitaria. The planning was originally beset with disputes over money the Mexican groups received from the 1989 San Francisco anarchist gathering which was to finance the Mexico event. However, much of this seems resolved and planning is proceeding.
The gathering will have the structure of most of the previous ones with workshops dominating the format, but what once was conceived of as a continental affair has been scaled back considerably. The center in Ocotepec will only accommodate 150 people and the sponsoring groups have decided to allot only 30 spaces to foreigners, so if you are interested in attending, time may be an important factor. We would remind those considering going that travel in Mexico can often be unpredictable, so we advise caution in your planning. The border guards, who often want bribes, should obviously not be told the purpose of your visit. Also, anarchist literature and paraphernalia probably will not facilitate a border crossing.
The sponsors request a donation of 50,000 pesos ($20) for expenses. Write to: Regeneración, Apdo. Postal 9090, Mexico 1, DF, Mexico. They also offer an account of the planning disputes and their resolution.
Last fall, right-wing vandals smashed the windows of San Francisco’s Bound Together Books, 1369 Haight St., SF CA 94117. The store collective put out an urgent appeal to the anarchist movement for funds to repair the damage (see FE Winter 1990–1991). People throughout the country responded by contributing over $1,000 which covered a good part of their losses. Write or visit them for a look at their interesting book list.
If you needed another reason to send contributions to a local environmental group or Earth First! rather than the bureaucratic, conservative Audubon Society, here’s the final one. In order to pep up its deservedly stodgy image, the organization fired its magazine editor of 25 years and replaced him with a former managing editor of The Star, a tattle-tale supermarket tabloid. His first act at the helm was to kill a previously scheduled lead story detailing the environmental effects of the Gulf War. Also gone is the Audubon emblem of an egret in flight, replaced with a blue flag. If you want to save the planet, your money would be better placed elsewhere.
Ah, don’t you feel safe now? The headlines of the papers on July 18, 1991 rang with the news, “U.S., Soviets Agree To Cut Nuclear Might”—Detroit Free Press. However, when you read the small-print (or even the large print, for that matter), it isn’t so reassuring. The treaty really only amounts to a public relations ploy and a streamlining of the so-called system of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD), as the nuts in the Pentagon and the Kremlin call it.
After months of haggling over “throw weight” and other exotic terminology, the two sides have agreed to reduce the U.S. nuclear force to 10,000 warheads and 8,000 for the Soviets (or whatever they’ll be calling themselves). Each side is left with “only” 880 sea-launched missiles, but since it’s been shown it would take as few as 80 missiles to destroy human life on the planet, none of this is very reassuring.
As we write/read, planet-annihilating submarines from each side lurk off each others’ coasts, waiting for the right code to be sent; or was it a computer error...