Count Down To May Day 2012 in Bristol

31 03 2012

Wow, quite a lot of cobwebs on this site, we brushed ’em off and dusted the place down as we figured it was time to get this blog going again. We have been putting all our time into our partner site recently and neglected this one.

The plan for this blog was that it would straddle all left leaning revolutionary groups but this didn’t happen in the way we hoped and as we didn’t want to just be running a front group it’s been shelved. But now, finally we have something to talk about.

Last week twenty-seven people including individuals from Bristol Anarchist Federation, Industrial Workers of the World, Socialist Party, Solidarity Federation, Socialist Workers Party, South West Against Nuclear, unaligned individuals and representatives of other events and student groups gathered to kick-start planning for International Workers Day 2012 in Bristol.

I for one, was really surprised at how well the meeting went. Turn out was far better than I expected and the meeting flowed pretty smoothly. We came to a decision to organise events on both Tuesday 1st May itself and then a second, larger day of action on Saturday 5th, as unfortunately in this country May 1st is not a bank holiday.

Lots of ideas came out of the meeting including a large central march as well as smaller local demos/events around the city. Others liked the idea of dong something fun to celebrate International Workers Day including plans for events and games in Bristol’s Parks and even live music or some sort of party. There were also some other very interesting ideas that it is probably best not to put up here quite yet. Our plan was to use the links the BADACA has with the Unions to organise a large demonstration. We also wanted to look to encourage single issue campaign groups and other organisation to organise events and demos to make it a week of fun and action.

Many people wanted to Focus on the NHS but at the same time be clear that all the cuts are an attack on the Working Classes.

Working groups have already formed to take on press, publicity, liasing with other groups, local events and writing a call out. As you can appreciate the first meeting of a large groups who don’t know each other well and in some cases actively avoid working together was mainly about idea generating. But such was the interest and energy to get things moving we set our next meting day for just four days later.

Obviously that doesn’t give us time to expand the invite to more people to come along to the meeting but our next meeting after that is Sunday 8th April, 5pm upstairsĀ  at the Stag & Hounds on Old Market Street. (This may change so e-mail us anticustactionbristol@riseup.net if you are interested in getting involved or join this Facebook group).

See You In The Meeting Halls, See You In The Streets!

Individual from Bristol 1st of May Group

Advertisements




Beyond Broken Windows: Anti Cuts Action in the West

22 01 2011

On January 15th & 16th some anti-cuts activists from Bristol headed up to Manchester for the first Network-X gathering. The aim was “to establish a network that will allow libertarians to co-ordinate and support each others struggles” as part of the wider anti-cuts movement.

The decision was taken to form regional networks of anti-authoritarian groups fighting the cuts. As Bristol Anarchist Federation’s Anti-cuts Action Campaign has already been working on this for a while we hope to further this network. At present we have built links and are in contact with groups and individuals in Bristol, Bath, Gloucester, Stroud, Taunton, Hereford, Wiltshire, Cardiff, Newport and slightly further away in north Wales and Northern Ireland.

We don’t look to replace groups like Bristol Anti-Cuts Alliance and our affiliation form is winging its way to their secretary as I type. Our simple aim is to network with groups and individuals in the west to share ideas and mobilise for actions.

We support alliances such as BADACA and believe there are some great individuals working in them, their strong union links and ability to organise large scale mobilisations are vital to the anti-cuts movement. However they are all to often stifled with bureaucracy and party politics making them unable to mobilise at short notice and some within groups such as these abuse the platform to push their party line and show little interest in actually taking action.

The Facebook revolution has made it almost too easy to call demos, although it is great to level the playing field in this way, people are calling events and then not providing and propaganda/placards/banners etc needed, and as a result (like the recent Bristol EMA demo) protests are failing. Conversely where materials are provided and a demo properly organised the group calling the demo can take the opportunity to push their particular brand of politics and puts newspaper sales before fighting the cuts. We are also concerned about certain political parties who are moving to build power by hijacking organisations such as the NSSN and NCAFC.

Radical Workers, Unionist, Anarchists & Students on Bristol demo October 23rd


Read the rest of this entry »