Fifth Estate Collective
Anarchy on the Air!

The Final Straw Radio

Want to learn how to turn off GPS on your phone? Hear the latest from the pipeline blockade? Or, how to support pipeline resisters near you? The Final Straw Radio (TFSR) is a weekly anarchist radio show and podcast based in Asheville, N.C. TFSR has produced programs since 2010, airing on stations across the country, and offering free downloads at thefinalstrawradio.noblogs.org.

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Margaret Killjoy
A Brief History of Anarchist Fiction Eccerpts

Excerpted and reprinted from Fifth Estate #385, Fall, 2011.

Without even knowing it, you’ve read anarchist fiction. There are literary greats like Leo Tolstoy (“The Anarchists are right in everything ... They are mistaken only in thinking that Anarchy can be instituted by revolution.” [“On Anarchy,” 1900]), Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Henry Miller (”[An anarchist] is exactly what I am. Have been all my life.” [Conversations With Henry Miller, 1994]), Dambudzo Marechera (“If you are a writer for a specific nation or a specific race, then fuck you.”), Ba Jin, Carolyn Chute, J.M. Coetzee (“What is wrong with politics is power itself.” [Diary of a Bad Year, 2007]), Jorge Luis Borges, and William Blake, and other popular fiction authors like Alan Moore, Ursula K. Le Guin, Michael Moorcock, Robert Shea, Norman Spinrad, B. Traven, Kurt Vonnegut, Ethel Mannin, and Edward Abbey.

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Eric Laursen
Repression & Resistance From RNC 2000 to Trump

a review of

Crashing the Party: Legacies and Lessons from the RNC 2000 by Kris Hermes. PM Press, 2015 pmpress.org

Crashing the Party was published three years ago, but it couldn’t be more timely in the age of Trump and Sessions. Kris Hermes’s book is an in-depth account of the legal saga that began with the repression and mass arrests of activists at the 2000 Republican National Convention in Philadelphia.

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SK
Looking Back at France, May 1968 The Basic Story

Fifty years ago France was on the verge of social revolution, with millions of workers on strike, factories occupied, and students striking and occupying universities and high schools all over the country. Anarchists and anti-authoritarians were deeply involved in this massive movement which took many, but not all, by surprise.

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Barry Pateman
Thoughts on the Significance of France, May 1968

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Paris, May 1968: Taking to the streets is more than building barricades and fighting the police. Perhaps more importantly, it’s also a time for many hours of discussing ideas and passions that escape the mundane.

One of the most important things May ’68 achieved was to make rebellion feel exciting, thrilling, and urgent. People took to the streets of France for a variety of reasons but they took to the streets.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Intro to May ’68 We’ll Always Have Paris

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It’s been fifty years since the exciting events of May 1968 in France that shook the country to its foundations. It is still inspiring to remember the widespread revolt of high school and university students, and then workers, that erupted throughout the country, leading to the largest general strike in French history. These events brought society to a stop, temporarily transforming daily life, and posing the possibility of a complete social revolution. The 1968 turmoil in France was part of a worldwide upsurge.

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Jesús Sepúlveda
The Animal Hungers

The animal hungers

for light and strength

He hungers

.

Killing himself while hunting

Groaning

fatally and the last

.

Hunger springs

Sleepless

.

There are beasts without burden

that dance / grow fiery

They warily drink water

.

Famine distorts

Tea or sugar or bread

or fuel

or a tender hand?

.

The animal hungers

for goodness

.

The famished grow fat

leaving scraps for neither him

nor her

who remained with her cubs

.

The animal hungers

Tramps through trenches

.

up slopes

Sets out

.

He rears up on both paws and ransacks a beehive

Spreads his wings and throws himself from a cliff

.

The animal hungers

when he moves with the flock

or sells his lungs, his eyes

his goodness, his fury

hangs from meat hooks

.

There is no slaughterer without slaughterhouses

there is a journal. a story. a bus

.

and the barrio where he who writes grew up

.

There are massacres

.

Slaughterers dressed as generals in plastic aprons

or doctors in white coats

the chemists the priests enrobed

.

Or gold buttons / stripes

or suits

Bare-chested

or sweaty

.

When the animal hungers

Everything trembles

Books crumble

The earth quakes

.

Autumn flowers bloom in the garden

In the gazebo unreal and necessary

the breeze rushes

people stroll by

.

Home is one

who smokes sitting in the patio of his house

or in a hotel

or silently waits in the corner of his

infancy

or lingers outside

until they open the door

.

Hunger squeezes through crevices

Cuts grooves

Breathes

Climbs fences

Feeds

.

But the animal doesn’t wait

grows weak or devours

He is hungry

and cold

.

He doesn’t know how to live

with pain and anguish

but tries

.

He prepares tea / bathes

or doesn’t

.

He has had enough

.

Slurps

Dips his bread

.

Sits still a moment

...

Matthew Lucas
Black Panther Breakthrough or More Hollywood Marketing?

a review of

Black Panther; Director: Ryan Coogler 134 min.

On the list of watershed films of 2018 will be Black Panther, Marvel Studios’ astronomically budgeted blockbuster, which raked in critical plaudits as well as ticket sales on an unprecedented scale. The film has struck a chord with both black and white audiences.

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Tom Schulte
Life Among the Piutes Review

a review of

Life Among the Piutes: Their Wrongs and Claims by Sarah Winnemucca Hopkins. G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1883; Kindle edition, 2017. Also, free online

This is an amazing autobiography and first-hand account from Sarah Winnemucca Hopkins (born Thocmentony, meaning “Shell Flower;” c. 1844—1891) the grand-daughter of Chief Truckee (d. 1860), medicine chief of the Northern Paiute.

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Carrie Laben
The People’s Republic of Everything Review

a review of

The People’s Republic of Everything by Nick Mamatas. Tachyon Publications 2018, tachyonpublications.com

Nick Mamatas, who first entered the radical literary scene two decades ago as one of the translators of Jae-Eui Lee’s Kwangju Diary, has been a consistent yet consistently surprising voice since.

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Rui Preti
Exploring the Past & Present of Anarchists in New York City

A review of

Radical Gotham: Anarchism in New York City from Schwab’s Saloon to Occupy Wall Street, Tom Goyens, ed. University of Illinois Press, 2017

New York City is well known for its radicals, past and present. The lives and deeds of some noteworthy anarchists who have lived there (including Emma Goldman, Paul Goodman and Murray Bookchin), and the high points of local movement history have been discussed extensively in articles and books. Yet there is a shortage of bottom up histories describing and exploring the lives of non-famous anarchists of earlier times or currently.

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Bill Weinberg
True Stories Review

a review of

True Stories: Tales from the Generation of a New World Culture by Garrick Beck. iUniverse, 2017

Garrick Beck spans a personal journey through radical bohemia in the 1950s, hippie utopianism in the 1960s, back-to-the-land communalism in the 1970s, to applying those ethics today through community work and urban Land-reclamation back in the New York City of his youth.

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Peter Werbe
The Way of the Passenger Pigeon Review: John Zerzan on the End of Civilization

a review of

A People’s History of Civilization by John Zerzan. Feral House, 2018 feralhouse.com

Beginning with John Zerzan’s 1970s jeremiads in this publication, his predictions of social collapse and later of civilization’s were best summed up by the title of his FE #276, January, 1976 article, “The Decline and Fall of Everything.”

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Bill Weinberg
Impossible Revolution Review

a review of

Impossible Revolution: Making Sense of the Syrian Tragedy by Yassin al-Haj Saleh. Haymarket Books 2017

This book is a necessary corrective to the dominant perception—left, right and center—that the opposition in Syria are all jihadists and dictator Bashar Assad the best bet for stability.

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Craig O’Hara
PM Press Ten Years of Literary Molotovs

Bay Area-based PM Press celebrated its tenth anniversary of publishing in May with a bang-up party in Oakland, Calif., where staff, authors, and well-wishers howled at political sketch comedy, smashed a captured Amazon delivery drone, and danced the night away to punk rock.

PM was founded at the end of 2007 by a small group of people with decades of publishing, media, and organizing experience. At the outset we strived to create and distribute radical audio, video, and text releases through every available channel in all possible formats. True to one expanded variation of our name, “Print Matters,” however, we’re biased in favor of hardcopy books as the best format in which to communicate ideas for social change.

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Jason Rodgers
What does it mean to be human or transhuman?

a review of

The Transhuman Future: Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow. Tor Books, 2003

Cory Doctorow has a clear vision of the future. In a way, I hate him for that, because it is not a future in which I want to live. But he is probably right.

He extrapolates current situations and trends to create a realistic vision of the future. Often these include business trends, making them even more fleshed out visions. However, he is not a world builder. He writes humanistic stories, but about transhumanism, the idea that people can evolve beyond our current physical and mental limitations, especially by means of science and technology.

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Steven Cline
The Trials & Tribulations of Mrs. Whale Head Fiction

During Whale Head’s sleep, her organs grew very impatient and bored since they had become hyper intelligent. In order to amuse themselves, they read all the books in a twenty-seven-mile radius by spatial osmosis, and also managed to solve the paradox of the radial ostrich, which had been plaguing the King’s court philosophers for many decades now.

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Gracie Forest
Against the State; Against the Grain

a review of

Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States by James C. Scott. Yale University Press, 2017 yalebooks.yale.edu

In his latest book, James Scott continues his exploration of the relationship between domestication and the development of hierarchies of power in pre-modern and modern societies. He is particularly interested in examining the situations of people who resisted being incorporated into states. Against the Grain rejects the view that human history is a story of linear progression leading to the conveniences of contemporary civilization.

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Quincy B. Thorn
Becoming Masterless A Myth for Our Time

a review of

In Search of the Masterless Men of Newfoundland by Seaweed & Ron Sakolsky. Ardent Press, 2017 ardentpress.com

Seaweed and Ron Sakolsky have put together a book to inspire current and future rebels. Much more than history, it relates a myth with the potential to nurture hope for freer ways of life.

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Rui Preti
May Made Me (review) May ’68 Participants Look Back on the Events that Changed Their Lives Forever and Almost Changed France Completely

a review of

May Made Me: An Oral History of the 1968 Uprising in France by Mitchell Abidor. AK Press, 2018 akpress.org

May Made Me joins thousands of other books published over the past fifty years dealing with the insurrectionary events in France during May and June 1968. Unfortunately, most of them are quite superficial, inaccurate and often highly distorted by authoritarian presuppositions.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Montreal Anarchist Theatre Festival Seeks Plays

The 14th annual Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival, the world’s only event dedicated to anarchist theatre, seeks plays, monologues, dance-theatre, puppet shows, mime, in English and French, on the theme of anarchism or related themes such as opposition to all forms of oppression including the State, capitalism, war, and patriarchy. Also, pieces exploring ecological, social and economic justice, racism, feminism, poverty, class and gender oppression from an anarchist perspective. We welcome work from anarchist and non-anarchist writers.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Anarchist & Anti-authoritarian Publishers

[one_half padding=“0 0 0 30px”]AK Press

370 Ryan Ave. #100 Chico, CA 95973 USA

(510) 208–1700

info@akpress.org

akpress.org

AK Press (AKUK)

33 Tower St., Edinburgh EH6 7BN, UK

+44 131 555 5165

ak@akedin.demon.co.uk

akuk.com

Autonomedia

autonomedia.org

Black & Red

P.O. Box 02374, Detroit MI 48202

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S. Laplage
Novels of Michael Ondaatje Review

a review of

In the Skin of a Lion (1987); The English Patient (1993) by Michael Ondaatje

Some people read novels solely for a good story. Others also want quality writing that flows well and doesn’t distract from the story line. For me, if the novel reflects my values, all the better, but this is not a criterion.

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E. B. Maple (Peter Werbe)
George Bradford (David Watson)

Blood and Soil Ideologies Excerpt-Reprint

The following is an excerpt from an article commenting on the 1993 Palestine Liberation Organization/Israel peace agreement, “The PLO/Israeli Treaty: Another Defeat for the Palestinians,” from Fifth Estate #343, Fall/Winter 1993.

Eew realize that in the 45 years of Israeli existence, fewer than 700 Israeli civilians have been killed by Palestinian guerrillas. In the same period, Israel has slaughtered tens of thousands of Palestinian and Lebanese civilians (including scores of children whose “crime” was throwing stones), wiped out 400 villages, imprisoned thousands without trial, dynamited houses, cut down thousands of trees in orchards, and engaged in collective punishment in an attempt to terrorize the “natives” into submission.

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Various Authors
Letters

Send letters to fe@fifthestate.org or Fifth Estate, POB 201016, Ferndale MI 48220.

All formats accepted including typescript & handwritten. Letters may be edited for length.

Voting I

Thank you for finally calling out your fellow privileged white lefties for their, “I choose not to vote,” bullshit. (See “In Defense of Tactical Voting,” by Bill Weinberg, FE #400, Spring 2018.)

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Various Authors
Letters

Send letters to fe AT fifthestate DOT org or Fifth Estate, POB 201016, Ferndale MI 48220.

All formats accepted including typescript & handwritten. Letters may be edited for length.

DINNER SERVED

Enjoyed your review of John Zerzan’s A People’s History of Civilization, “The Way of the Passenger Pigeon,” by Peter Werbe in FE #401, Summer 2018. In your reviewer’s analogy of civilization being a train heading towards a bridge that is out without the realization of those supping in the dining car, if I enjoy that last supper as it crosses that trestle, is that decadence?

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Fifth Estate Collective
Call for Submissions Spring 2019 Fifth Estate

Theme: I Will NOT Obey!

We are seeking analytical articles, news reports, essays, poetry, and fiction on acts of refusal and resistance, either individually or collectively; also graphic illustrations and photographs. Before submitting essays or articles, please read our writer’s guidelines at www.FifthEstate.org.

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Fifth Estate Collective
About This Issue

The theme for this issue, Anything Can Happen, originated as the title of a 1968 Fredy Perlman essay at a time when everything did, indeed, seem possible. The ebullience of that era, in which many believed revolution was on the horizon has faded, but the engagement of activist projects in confronting the worst abuses of the system continue apace.

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D. Sands
Ice Cream, Anarchy & Forgotten Workers Detroit anti-authoritarians remember Sacco and Vanzetti with ice cream social, assist with one-of-a-kind food-sharing event

In late August, a sizable crowd gathered in a downtown Detroit park well past its glory days to eat chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream...and learn about Sacco and Vanzetti.

The event, known as the Sacco and Vanzetti Ice Cream Social, honored the memory of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, two Italian-born anarchists framed for allegedly robbing and killing a paymaster and security guard in South Braintree, Massachusetts in April 1920.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Fredy Perlman Anthology Just published!

The Machine and Its Discontents, a collection of writings by Fredy Perlman (1934–1985) has recently been jointly published in the U.K. by Theory and Practice and Active Distribution (theoryandpractice.org.uk and activedistribution.org). Perlman, a prolific writer of radical texts, was a ten-year participant in the Fifth Estate.

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John Clark
Anything Can Happen—Or Not May 1968 & the Question of Possibility

“Sous les paves, la plage!” [Under the paving stones, the beach!]

—Revolutionary slogan; Paris 1968

1968 was an “Anything Can Happen” kind of year.

It was the year of the Prague Spring, the Tet Offensive, President LBJ’s abdication, massive student protests, the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy, the police riots at the Chicago Democratic Convention. The most historically momentous occurrence of that year was the May June uprising and general strike by students and workers in France.

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Clara Mystif
The Mystification of Voting An Anarchist Critique

Since the 19th century, anarchists have made opposition to representative democracy and electoral politics central to our critique of the state and all forms of hierarchy. As radicals who envision a world without government, we don’t want to lend legitimacy to the system of politicians and parties. The theme of this Fifth Estate issue is Anything Can Happen. This is not an empty slogan!

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Paul Walker (Peter Werbe)
Elections have consequences but only direct action will get you satisfaction

“If voting could change anything, it would be illegal.”

—Anarchist anti-electoral slogan

It’s difficult to imagine that there isn’t at least some joy, even among the most ardent electoral abstentionists, about the losses Donald Trump and the Republicans suffered in the November mid-term elections.The party and the president’s final call to continue their hard right agenda based on a relentless campaign of fear and hatred of immigrants was so fascistic that one could easily substitute Jew for those attempting to enter the country at the southern border.

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Nick Oltmann
Alt-Right Brain Drain Fascist goon squads remain active, but their media is crumbling

Has an unintended alliance of Silicon Valley censorship, alternative news rebuttals, mainstream journalistic scrutiny, and especially antifa street-fighters, discouraged what passes as the intellectual wing of the most reviled political movement of the last half-century?

Although fascist street attacks continue, the alt-right has been undergoing something of a brain drain in North America recently.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Anti-Fascist Theme at Montreal Theatre Fest Excerpt from play about Greek struggle

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Norman Nawrocki’s “No way! No way! Trees that Talk” was presented at the 2018 Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival, the theme of which was Anti-Fascism. The play is based on the lives of six anarchist, anti-fascist women—four from 20th century opposition in Italy, Spain, Germany and Poland, and two recent ones from Greece and Syria.

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Bill Weinberg
Cuba Turns ‘Green Scare’ Fugitive Over to US Are The Black And Puerto Rican Exiles in the Country Safe?

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Joseph Mahmoud Dibee, a fugitive animal-rights activist, was intercepted by Cuban authorities in early August and turned over to the FBI.

Popped by Cuban cops on an INTERPOL Red Notice, Dibee was flown to Portland, Ore., where he pleaded not guilty to taking part in a 1997 arson attack on a meatpacking plant—the first of several charges he faces.

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Jack Bratich
Discordia Americana Restoration Wars and Social Maneuvers: Is political and social chaos an opportunity for revolution or for further clampdown?

Daily life has a new rhythm: routine disruptions. DPacing an accelerated news cycle and affective bursts from smart phone notifications, our subjective autonomous systems are increasingly synced up with crisis-state and techno security tempos.

We don’t know what the next surprise is going to be, but we know it’s coming.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Government Green Scare Continues Free Joseph Dibee & all environmental and animal rights prisoners!

In the 1990s, environmentalists and animal rights activists engaged in campaigns to put a stop to climate change, animal exploitation, and the destruction of biodiversity. They shut down board meetings, interrupted construction projects, organized demonstrations and sit-ins, held public outreach events at punk shows and vegan potlucks, liberated animals from captivity, and occasionally utilized vandalism, sabotage, and arson against corporations involved in particularly egregious behavior.

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Jeff Shantz
Not Over Till It’s Over TransMountain Pipeline Suspended, But Resistance Must Continue

Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal ruled in August against the government, effectively suspending the TransMountain expansion (TMEX) project, a proposed twining of a bitumen pipeline, parallel to the first, from the Alberta tar sands to an oil refinery in Burnaby, Metro Vancouver.

The TMEX has long been opposed by a diversity of Indigenous communities, environmentalists, and anarchist activists. Recently, the Canadian government nationalized the Trans Mountain pipeline to assure the expansion would be built, putting up 4.5 billion Canadian dollars ($3.5 billion) to purchase the project from Texas oil giant, Kinder Morgan.

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Z (Anarchist Radio Berlin)
When Bad News is Good News World-Wide Anarchist Radio

Who the hell needs bad news? Well, we all do. At least if it’s bad news for the state, capital, and patriarchy.

B(A)D News is a monthly English language info show founded at the 2013 Anarchist Balkan Bookfair in Slovenia as the International Network of Anarchist and Anti-authoritarian Radio Projects, known as A-Radio Network (A-RN). Participants were Anarchist Radio Berlin, Radio Libertaire from Paris and Crna Luknja (“Black Hole”) from Slovenia’s capital, Ljubljana, as well as by individual radio activists from Eastern Europe.

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Jason Rodgers
Dismantling the Biomechanical Leviathan If Pavlov’s dogs can decondition from obedience to authority, so can we!

In Raoul Vaneigem’s 1967 Situationist treatise, The Revolution of Everyday Life, he recounts what resulted from the flooding of the basement of Ivan Pavlov’s laboratory where the Russian physiologist kept his famous salivating dogs as experiments in classical conditioning.

It was a traumatic event for the dogs that had to struggle to live in the rising water. The ones who survived completely shed the conditioning Pavlov had worked so diligently to place in them.

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Eric Thomas Chester
100 Years Later, Government Repression Has Not Stopped the IWW

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In 1917, unable to break the unity of the miners, armed vigilante gangs organized by the copper corporations, rounded up 2,000 strikers at gun point in Bisbee, Az. They were forced onto crammed cattle cars and dumped in the desert.

A hundred years ago, in September 1918, more than a hundred leaders of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) were convicted of conspiracy to obstruct World War I. The trial marked a critical turning point for the union and the Left. In marking this centenary, we remember the Industrial Workers of the World as the most successful organization holding to a radical vision in U.S. history.

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Muriel Lucas
Occupy ICE Portland Goes to the Movies In the midst of closing down the ICE office and fighting against eviction and the cops, gotta take a break to watch a film.

On June 17, Father’s Day, a march and vigil was planned outside of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) headquarters in Southwest Portland, Ore., to protest the Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. It quickly developed into something that the organizers hadn’t planned for: a six week occupation of the building that effectively shut it down for an extended period of time and brought ICE activities into sharp public attention.

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Various Authors
AK Press & Anarchist Publishing Interview: Why We Do It

AK Press is a worker-run anarchist collective that publishes and distributes radical books as well as visual and audio media. The collective was established in 1990 and is now run by seven people in five cities and two countries. They currently publish around twenty books each year.

Four collective members, who have been involved from 12 to 28 years, posed questions to themselves about anarchist publishing to take a look at their project.

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Tolbert Small
Gentrification

Quick call the police;

The Negroes are barbecuing at the lake.

Quick call the police;

The Negroes are drumming too loud

Quick call the cops

The colored choir is singing too loud.

Quick call the cops

That pregnant Negro’s belly is swollen;

Search that shoplifter’s belly!

Quick call the cops;

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Fifth Estate Collective
Philippines comrades skilling up for the long haul

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Members of Feral Crust, a small DIY ecologically-minded anarchist collective in the mountains of Marilog Davao (Southern Mindanao), Philippines are developing a rural community based on balance with the surrounding environment and social solidarity. Their community is located in a forest home to wildlife and indigenous people.

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RB
John Brown’s Raid & Space Ships Dot an Alternative History Book review

a review of

Fire on the Mountain by Terry Bisson. PM Press, 2009

Forget Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Lincoln was wrong or disingenuous when he told Harriet Beecher Stowe that her novel brought on the Civil War. The Slavocracy was not frightened by mawkish sentiment.

No, it was rifle-toting abolitionist zealots willing to die that caused Southern panic.

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Barbara Henning
An anarchist murder mystery Someone is trying to kill Rask Harp who is dying of AIDS

a review of

Long Day, Counting Tomorrow by Jim Feast. Autonomedia, 2017

“Outside across a swath of bay was the Statue of Liberty its torch, like a match head in night’s gutter.”

—from Long Day, Counting Tomorrow

Set in the late 1990s, Jim Feast’s Long Day, Counting Tomorrow is a sequel to an earlier novel, phobe, written by him and Ron Kohn. Both are mysteries involving the same group of anarchist writers. Long Day’s main character is Rask Harp, an ex-drug addict, son, brother, poet, friend, occasional prostitute, a young man who is dying from AIDS.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Fire Ant New Anarchist Prison Support Zine Calls for Solidarity with Locked Down Comrades

This first issue of Fire Ant, an anarchist prison solidarity zine, is published by Robcat and the incredibly energetic comrades in rural Maine.

It is a long term project for and with anarchist prisoners specifically, not a general prisoner support publication.

The goals are to raise material aid for imprisoned anarchists, spread information about imprisoned anarchists and anarchy, and foster communication between imprisoned and free roaming anarchists.

...

Various Authors
For an Ecology of the Marvelous North American Surrealist Movement statement

“Every time I think about us women, I think about the trees, the subversive trees laden in blood but not bleeding the rebellious trees encrusted but not cracking.”

—Jayne Cortez

“Unless rooted in poetry the experience of ‘outside’ from within—even the deepest ‘deep ecology’ barely scratches the surface.”

—Franklin Rosemont

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Karin L. Frank
Chiaroscuro Fiction

A lone figure stood before a door. Townsfolk had ridiculed her for years because she walked daily to this same spot.

No one else saw any reason to do so. And when they asked her what drew her, she could only shake her head. An answer reverberated deep in her brain but she could never quite grasp what it was.

...

Peter Werbe
Cops are the heroes in Spike Lee’s film

a review of

“BlacKkKlansman”

Director: Spike Lee

135 min.

“The cops and Klan go hand in hand!”

—frequent chant at anti-cop demonstrations

Spike Lee’s latest film “BlackKkKlansman,” the story of an African American police officer’s infiltration of the Ku Klux Klan in the early 1970s, has received generally excellent reviews in mainstream publications and from anti-racist activists.

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Mbeke Waseme
Stories of education in the UK

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Mbeke Waseme in Malacca, Malaysia

I’ve never worked in a school with coloured people.

I looked at her wondering why she felt the need to tell us that. The day I submitted my poem, I found out why.

That moment when you submit a piece of work and you’re standing at the teacher’s desk not quite able to read what their thoughts are.

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Mbeke Waseme
The stories are where healing lies

It is where the old man who said nothing Becomes the hero of the day

Where the time I choose to leave

Becomes the time I am willing to stay

It is where the cockroaches do not fly Scaring the shit out of me and my wards Where avocados are always in season And everyone will fight for a worthy cause

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Fifth Estate Collective
All J20 Charges Dropped!

In July, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Washington DC finally gave up on its eighteen-month effort to prosecute people protesting the inauguration of Donald Trump as President.

The 217 people indicted on felony charges of conspiracy to riot, engaging in a riot and property destruction, related to the events of January 20, 2017, came to be known as the J20 defendants.

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Rui Preti
George Orwell & Alex Comfort’s World War II Debate Fighting Fascism: Is there a role for the democratic state?

a review of

The Duty to Stand Aside: Nineteen Eighty-Four and the Wartime Quarrel of George Orwell and Alex Comfort by Eric Laursen. AK Press 2018

George Orwell’s fiction and non-fiction writings are among the most relevant works for understanding our current societal plight, although he died in 1950. All we need to do is turn on the TV or radio or check the internet to be confronted with denial of truth and misinformation. And all we have to do is walk down a street or enter a store, bank or public building to be reminded of the increasing surveillance all around us.

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Brad Evans
On 5 pm and being told
that a colleague
had committed suicide
earlier that day

What first greeted me

upon entering that room

were the sad, quiet faces

as we all sat around the table.

.

Thinking of her,

wondering why

and what happened

and some of it came out later.

.

But what was also on my thoughts

was finding out how management

had known about it all day long

as they readily pursued their disturbing calculation

...

David Watson
Federico Comes Home to Barcelona Compañeros from Detroit Bring the Ashes of a Son of the Spanish Revolution to Rest in Spain

In June and July, during a visit to Spain, my partner Marilynn Rashid and I spread some of the ashes of Federico Arcos, a companero, friend, and mentor to many of us in Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, including those on the Fifth Estate. Fede, as he was called, died in 2015 at the age of 94.

(For Federico’s memorial in Detroit in 2015, see FE issue 394, Summer 2015 and 395, Winter 2016.)

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David Watson
Unabomber Cops a Plea As bombs are back in the news, so is Ted Kaczynski

FE Introduction

During the outrage expressed in the national media following the delivery of over a dozen mail bombs in Late October addressed to prominent Democrats and a cable network, several commentators invoked the name of the Unabomber. (This ignores the role many of the targeted officials played in bombing other countries, but that’s a different story.)

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PG
The Privatization of the Welfare State How NGOs Aid the State

If you or your loved ones don’t have citizenship, are Native American, aren’t white, aren’t Christian, are women, queer, or trans, live near environmental sacrifice zones, depend on the natural environment for your health or subsistence, work a non-white-collar job, or participate in a radical movement, you are at risk under the Trump presidency. Fighting back against the government is a question of self-defense.

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Mike Wold
Fuck Authority & How to do it Successfully

a review of

Resisting Illegitimate Authority: A Thinking Person’s Guide to Being an Anti-Authoritarian—Strategies, Tools, and Models by Bruce E. Levine. AK Press, 2018

What makes someone anti-authoritarian? Bruce Levine, in his sometimes engaging book, Resisting Illegitimate Authority, starts by talking about his own childhood experiences testing adult authority, in this case, his teacher, and how he decided whether her authority was legitimate:

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Gregg Williard
Bikes for Peace

Bikes have no power until bodily given

and given, give back at higher gear.

Being mounted, being ridden

without armor plating, they’re

light in their taking

and being taken where.

Not that bikes can’t be taken, and take

to war: the U.S. in Havana, the British

against Boers, the Japanese in Shanghai,

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RB
Anything Can Happen at the End of the World

a review of

The Ends of the World: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth’s Past Mass Extinctions by Peter Brannen. Echo Press, 2017.

What is the best way to kill off most life on Earth? Forget those Hollywood asteroids and simply disrupt CO2 equilibrium in the atmosphere. The rest will take care of itself.

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Various Authors
Letters

Send letters to fe — AT — fifthestate — DOT — org or

Fifth Estate,

POB 201016,

Ferndale MI 48220

All formats accepted including typescript & handwritten.

Letters may be edited for length.

TAKING A RISK

As always, thank you for everything your team does. I’ve been working my way through the Winter 2019 issue of Fifth Estate after my shifts at Starbucks, and it really grounds me and makes me feel sane after working for capitalist madness.

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Fifth Estate Collective
About this Issue

There is no phrase that is more threatening to those in positions of power at any level of society than that of our theme, “I will not obey!” From the shop floor to the highest echelons of the state, the rulers depend on that short sentence not being uttered or, worse, acted upon, and in their worst nightmare, taken up by multitudes of us.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Call for Submissions

Theme Re-Enchanting The World

We seek analytical articles, news reports, essays, poetry, and fiction on ways of re-envisioning, re-creating and re-enchanting the world either individually or collectively. Also, art, graphic illustrations, and photographs.

Before submitting articles, read our writer’s guidelines at FifthEstate.org.

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John Clark
The Revolution Will be Powered by Shakti Energy Lessons from Vandana Shiva’s Navdanya Biodiversity Farm

I traveled to Dharamsala, India in 2005 to set up a one-month summer study program, in collaboration with the Louisiana Himalaya Association, and have taken groups of students there periodically since then. During last summer’s trip, we visited renowned ecofeminist theorist and activist Vandana Shiva’s Navdanya Biodiversity Farm. We toured the fields and the seed bank, heard lectures by staff members specializing in various areas of agroecology, and were extremely fortunate that Shiva herself could speak to our small group about Navdanya and the ecofeminist politics of Earth Democracy.

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John Zerzan
Techno Madness an overview

We live in a technological life-world, more so by the hour. Our ecology is now all too largely technology, which has been irreversible, directional, and cumulative. The process that now characterizes civilization is a generalized technicization. Its success is measurable by how totally it has insinuated itself into society and into our consciousness––with grave consequences.

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Bill Brown
The Movement of the Yellow Vests in France The Latest Spectre Haunting Europe?

Five months after its explosive appearance on the French scene, the mass movement of the Yellow Vests (les Gilets jaunes) stands at a crossroads. It faces many choices.

Should it remain outside of the properly political world or should it enter into it and engage in debate: and even electoral campaigns? If it does the latter doesn’t it risk recuperation by the existing parties?

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Robert Blurton
When Detroit Raised The White Flag of Surrender Tecumseh: Resistance to Empire

Last October 3 marked twenty-five years since eighteen US soldiers died in Mogadishu, Somalia during a famous firefight that most Americans know as Black Hawk Down, for the crashed US helicopters. The loss is embedded in the American consciousness through a self-pitying book and film, and was widely commemorated on the 25th anniversary.

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David Rovics
T-R-E-A-S-O-N! What’s That spell?

During my live shows, I often do a song I wrote about the San Patricios, a band of mostly Irishmen who deserted from the U.S. Army during the Mexican-American war and fought on the Mexican side.

I start by doing a call-and-response with the audience. “Give me a ‘T’,” “give me an ‘R.,’” cheerleader-style, until we spell out, “Treason,” to introduce the story of the “Saint Patrick’s Battalion.”

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Fifth Estate Collective
David Porter Remembered An Important Anti-Authoritarian Voice is Stilled

Longtime Fifth Estate friend and contributor, David Porter, died December 29; he was 79. A dedicated teacher, anarchist researcher, and grassroots community activist, Porter applied his anti-authoritarian principles to many projects.

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David Porter in his office, 1975

Growing up near Chicago, Porter graduated from Oberlin College near Cleveland in 1961. He then attended the Institute of Political Studies in Paris. His doctoral studies in politics at Columbia University included a year in Algeria learning directly about the workers’ self-management movement there.

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Phil Bailey
Carl Hughes

Applied Anarchy Organizing & Movement-Building for Liberation

Moving from ideas to action has always been central to the anarchist project. Our work has long been inspired by visions of a transformed world, one in which prevailing institutions and relationships are overturned to create more liberatory ways of living and relating to each other.

Yet powerful forces stand in our way. Not only the entrenched ruling order with its vast resources including its repressive apparatus and cultural spectacle, but perhaps even more of a bulwark against change, a deeply ingrained mass culture of submission to authority which generates a fear of living liberated lives.

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Dan Fischer
Holding Up Progress How New Haven Neighborhoods Stopped an Airport Expansion

“Stop the madness and expand Tweed. Two neighborhoods can’t hold up economic progress,” pronounced a local newspaper columnist, directing his ire at residents on the edge of New Haven and East Haven, Connecticut.There, the grassroots Stop Tweed campaign has so far halted the expansion of Tweed Airport.

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Phil Bailey
The Art of Richard Levins Morales Telling our stories and holding our ground

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The art of Ricardo Levins Morales is rooted in the soil of the struggles that shape our lives. Inspiring, empowering and validating, his images both document and embody collective visions of unity in the face of power.

As a result of working with the Northland Poster Collective in South Minneapolis for over thirty years, Levins Morales has developed core insights about how art can be a powerful part of strategy in movements.

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Carl Hughes
George Lakey

The Brighter Side of Conflict Interview with Activist George Lakey

How Conflict Encourages Growth

Most of us don’t like dealing with conflict in movement politics. There are times when our projects are rolling along smoothly and then we hit a point of contention and suddenly the room is full of tension and discord.

For many people, the reaction is to try and restore order by quelling the discontent and moving onto other matters.

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Leila Al Shami
The Syrian Quagmire Civilians are trapped between the Assad regime, foreign states & ideological war lords

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A family in Idlib Province, Syria, home to three million people, half of them displaced, or forcibly evacuated. Idlib was recently captured by hard-line Islamists. The sign reads “We are one of 760,000 families in Idlib.” / #HumansOfIdlib

If 2011 looked like the moment when people could unite, both within and across countries, to topple decades-old dictatorships with the demand for freedom and social justice, today looks like the moment of counter-revolutionary success. After eight years of increasingly brutal conflict in Syria, Bashar al-Assad still presides as president over a now destroyed, fragmented and traumatized country. The dominant narrative is that the war is nearing its end. States once vocally opposed to Assad now have other strategic concerns which take precedence over the victims of his savage efforts to hold onto power. Yet, on the ground, conditions are far from stable and civilians remain trapped and are paying the price for ongoing struggles for power and territory between the regime, foreign states and ideological war lords.

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Mars Z. Goetia
Capitalism is Awfully Nice The farther down you are on the system’s ladder, the nicer you are required to be

From childhood, most of us are taught what is supposedly an essential skill for living within industrial capitalist society: how to be nice. To be nice is to act in a way that gives others pleasure, comfort, and satisfaction in order to receive social rewards or prevent social penalties. To succeed in capitalism, it is important to be liked and likable. Nice people can get and keep jobs, make business deals, have social lives, and more.

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Jason Rodgers
How Rational is Rationality? How rational thought functions as social control

There is something faulty with the concept of humans as rational animals. It defines humanity by a limited criterion and tries to separate humans from our animal being. This sets up a hierarchy in which the true human is defined by the portion of the brain that is rational. Perhaps, even worse than the idea of the rational animal is the idea of the “rationalizing animal.” Pratkanis and Aronson in their 2001 Age of Propaganda: The Everyday Use and Abuse of Persuasion, place this as a central factor in how we are manipulated.

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Peter Werbe
Cuba’s New Constitution Bye-Bye Communism & Gay Rights; Hello Private Property & Censorship

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Groups like this performing at El Tanque at Havana’s Proyecto Cultural Muraleando will soon be subjected to official censorship.—photo: Peter Werbe

Pity the poor Marxist-Leninist militants now bereft of the police states for which they so earnestly apologized. But, not real pity as their dishonesty has caused as much damage to revolutionary possibilities as have the objects of their political ardor.

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Sean J. Mahoney
The Sins of Men Remained

The cessation of praying daily, of praying up against dry trees,

the cessation of asking and answering, pondering no more, no

more will, no take, not bound, instead only undone down to

laces; shoes upon dogs still for haste may remain yet to be made.

Not for gesticulation but emergence. Not for the writings but

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Don LaCoss
Zapping the Pyramid The history of an anti-authoritarian symbol (excerpt)

Excerpted from Fifth Estate #367–368, Spring-Summer 2005 40th anniversary issue. This is an edited version of Don’s essay.

The design shows a pyramid surmounted by an eye being blasted by a bolt of lightning. Bannered beneath the collapsing pyramid is the motto, “NON SERVIAM.”

If English, Spanish, Italian, or French is your native tongue, then you can probably guess the Latin translation: “I will not serve.” The phrase is taken from Paradise Lost (1674) by the radical poet of the English Revolution, John Milton, wherein the archangel Lucifer refuses to obey God and is cast into the frozen lake of Hell for his rebelliousness.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Visit fifthestate.org

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Arsham Parsi
The Situation of LGBT People in Iran In the name of religion, thousands are executed

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A demonstration against Iran’s execution of gays during a Christopher Street Day gay pride parade in Berlin.

My name is Arsham Parsi, a 37-year-old gay man born and raised in Iran. Neither of these facts were my choice. Discovering my difference from other men—not being interested in women—terrified me because I could be killed for who I was.

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Jeff Shantz
Unist’ot’en People & Territory Under Attack Canadian Government, Mounties, Corporations & Courts Arrayed Against Native People’s Land

As has been the case throughout colonial conquest, the military police force of the Canadian state, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) have facilitated the occupation of Indigenous lands by resource capital. Most recently, the state forced its way onto Wet’suwet’en territories in northern so-called British Columbia to secure access for a Coastal GasLink liquified natural gas pipeline (LNG).

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Various Authors
No More Fattening Frogs for Snakes! A Surrealist Manifesto in Solidarity with the Unist’ot’en People

A Joint Declaration by

Amphibians for Decolonization

Inner Island Surrealist Group (‘Kómoks/Pentlatch territory)

Ottawa Surrealist Group (Algonquin Anishnaabeg territory)

“It took me a long time to find out my mistakes But I’m not fattenin’ no more frogs for snakes.”

—Sonny Boy Williamson

The Unist’ot’en are the Big Frog clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation. They defiantly croak at the colonizer’s yoke without reservation. They are hungry for decolonization. We honor their spirited resistance to colonial authority and offer our wholehearted solidarity.

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Rich Dana (Ricardo Feral)
Grid Interactive On the longest day of the year

The solar array’s passive tracking system wakes to the first rays of the Pennsylvania summer sun. The solar panels don’t care that today is the solstice, or that the sun will rise on its arc to an angle of 72.5° at noon.

Its rusting actuators will strain to follow the sun all the way to its apex. As freon warms in the black copper tubes that run along the edges of the frame, the liquid vaporizes and moves from one side to the other. The tracker begins its daily task of following the thermal energy of the sun, keeping the photovoltaic panels facing into the sunlight as it moves along a course from east to west.

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Franklin Lopez
A Brief History of subMedia On the 15th anniversary of making anarchist films

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Stimulator, the disembodied, foul mouthed host of ITEOTWAWKIAIFF, a subMedia satirical news show.

A strange looking man walks out of a Sam’s Club superstore with a shopping cart filled with diapers, food, and chocolate, without paying. He fooled the cart checkers with a fake receipt. As his feet touch the parking lot pavement, a rent-a-cop yells, “Stop!!”

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Fifth Estate Collective
Anarchist Netflix? Tired of over-produced and vacuous Hollywood garbage doled out nightly by Netflix?

Don’t worry, the Anarchist Film Archive has got you covered. A project of anarchist publisher Christie Books, the archive has over 1000 titles ready to be streamed from the comfort of your squat.

While all the films are not anarchist, this impressive collection includes documentaries from the likes of Adam Curtis, many rare films about the Spanish Civil War and Revolution, Noam Chomsky talks, lots of mainstream films with liberatory themes, and even some subMedia videos.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Anarchist Sci-Fi Site Lists Movies & Books

AnarchySF is an online archive of the intersection between anarchy and science fiction. It’s an open-source repository of anarchist or anarchy-adjacent science fiction. Visit at anarchysf.com.

It features books, movies, and other media which are either anarchist in their politics or of interest to anarchists.

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Muriel Lucas
Rebellion in Patagonia A classic anarchist film still relevant today

“La Patagonia rebelde”

Director: Hector Olivera

110 min. (1974)

The death of Argentine anarchist author and activist Osvaldo Bayer on December 24, 2018 came at a time of renewed interest in his long career. Recent translations of two of his works, The Anarchist Expropriators and Rebellion in Patagonia, were published by AK Press in 2016.

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Marieke Bivar
Running to Find Ourselves New fiction from Cara Hoffman

a review of

Running by Cara Hoffman. Simon & Schuster Paperbacks 2018

Inspired by her own youth spent travelling and working in Greece, Cara Hoffman’s third novel, Running, is a suspenseful punk adventure tale.

It follows Bridey, Jasper and Milo, wild, hungry youths luring unwitting tourists to stay at a shabby Athens hotel in exchange for a place to crash and a commission to spend at the bar.

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Peter Werbe
Blood Lake Review

a review of

Blood Lake: A Filomena Buscarsela Mystery by Kenneth Wishnia. PM Press edition 2014; Spanish translation 2018. Originally published HB 2002

Anarchist fans of detective novels and murder mysteries who don’t like cops have to suspend a little of their social critique since it is the police, ex-cops, and private eyes who are solving the crimes. Anarchists as a rule don’t do much sleuthing.

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Peter Werbe
Lago de Sangre Reseña del libro

Una Revisión de

Lago de sangre: un libro de misterio sobre Filomena Buscarsela por Kenneth Wishnia. PM Press edición en español 2018; edición en inglés 2014; Publicado originalmente en 2002

Los anarquistas amantes de las novelas de detectives y de misteriosos asesinatos, a quienes no les gustan los polis, tendrán que suspender momentáneamente su crítica social porque son precisamente la policía, los ex polis y los detectives privados quienes resuelven los crímenes. Los anarquistas, segun la regla, no se encargan de actividades detectivescas de esa índole.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Joel Silvers Detroit artist & filmmaker dies at 72

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Friend and comrade, Joel Silvers, died unexpectedly at age 72 in Detroit on December 8, 2018.

Joel was present when the Fifth Estate was launched in 1965 and at the 2015 festivities that celebrated the 50th anniversary of this publication.

As an award-winning filmmaker, he produced a documentary of interviews with some of the early staff, a trailer of which is available on our web site, FifthEstate.org, “Enduring Voices: 50 years of the Fifth Estate.”

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Bursts
Organizing for Solidarity with Locked Down Comrades Buttons To Show Your Support for Political Prisoners

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The 2019 Fight Toxic Prisons Convergence is June 14–17 in Gainesville, Florida and will include speakers, panels, workshops, protests and cultural activities exploring the intersections of anti-prison and environmental struggles. fighttoxicprisons.wordpress.com Above: Protest march following the 2018 FTP convergence in Pittsburgh. / photo: Jordan Mazurek

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Fifth Estate Collective
Resources for Prisoners & Supporters

National Jericho Movement: PO Box 2164, Chesterfield VA 23832. thejerichomovement.com

New York City Anarchist Black Cross (NYC ABC): PO Box 110034, Brooklyn, New York 11211. nycabc.wordpress.com

Bloomington Anarchist Black Cross: Focuses on solidarity with prison rebels, anarchist prisoners, and prisoners of other liberatory social movements. A books to prisoner project and huge number of links to other prison projects. bloomingtonabc.noblogs.org

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Marius Mason
Women Doing Time

a review of

Taking the Rap: Women Doing Time For Society’s Crimes by Ann Hansen. Between the Lines, 2018

When offered the chance to review Ann Hansen’s memoir about her time in the Canadian prison system, I was enthusiastic but doubtful that I would be permitted to receive such a book.

With my Communications Management status and participation in the Rehabilitation Drug Abuse Program (RDAP) while imprisoned at Carswell Federal Medical Center in Texas, it seemed unlikely that this courageous and intensely honest account of real life in all manner of jails, holding facilities, and prisons would be allowed in.

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Rod Dubey
The Demand for Human Rights is a Revolutionary Act

a review of

A Declaration of the Rights of Human Beings: On the Sovereignty of Life as Surpassing the Rights of Man, Second Edition by Raoul Vaneigem, Translated by Liz Heron. PM Press, 2019

“The freedom to live like a human being annuls the supposed freedoms of commerce and predation.”

So begins Raoul Vaneigem’s preface to the second edition of A Declaration of the Rights of Human Beings. Originally published in 2001, this second edition is his attempt to create a foundational document asserting the primacy of humanity against the dominance of commerce and state power.

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Rui Preti
Struggles Against Capitalist Rule in Modern China

a review of

China On Strike: Narratives of Workers’ Resistance edited by Hao Ren; English edition edited by Zhong ]in Li and Eli Friedman. Haymarket Books, 2016

Striking to Survive: Workers Resistance to Factory Relocations in China by Fan Shigang, translated by Henry Moss. Haymarket Books, 2018

The modern state of China, by capitalist standards, is generally thriving. The nation’s economic growth rate, considered to be a prime indicator of prosperity, is significantly higher than that of the western industrialized countries, even with its recent slowdowns.

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