Sunday, 17 May 2020

Barry Pateman & anarchism: "If you think you've got the answers, you're wrong"

The Final Straw Radio chatted with Barry Pateman on 26 April this year in an episode called 'Barry Pateman on Anarchist History and Challenges'.

It's a rich and glorious discussion where Barry talks about 'what does it mean to be an anarchist in a capitalist world?', how 'to beat weaselly capitalism' in the world we live in and how we need to communicate. It's a highly-recommended must listen that talks about being an anarchist, communication and communities, class and bolshevism and the joy and frustration of being an anarchist in a capitalist world.

Wednesday, 6 May 2020

Think Carefully About Any COVID-19 Tracing App

Below is an article from anti-surverillance group OASIS on the upcoming tracing app(s):

The fear of COVID-19 is viral. That play on our fear means that we may be rushing to introduce surveillance apps that we will later regret.

As one of the tools to fight COVID-19 the NZ government has promised that there will be a contact tracing app available by mid-May. The first iteration they have said, will be in the form of an on-line sign-up form, and could be out by 11th May.

But there has been minimal discussion about the pros and cons of COVID-19 apps. Rather, our fear of the virus and its effect on our world has meant that most people are unquestioningly accepting the necessity of using apps to keep the spread of the virus under control.

However, we need to break away from the fear factor and consider the long-term societal results of any COVID-19 apps. We need to consider possible consequences weighed up against any benefits. We need to not only question the short-term need for contact tracing but think of their long-term use and effect. We need to look at what we are being asked to give up.

Decisions made today about any tracing or tracking apps will have huge implications for our futures.

Read more here.

Saturday, 2 May 2020

We’re 25!

Twenty-five years ago, on May 1, 1995 members of the anarchist group Committee for the Establishment of Civilisation (CEC) started up Anarchist Books in the existing space of the National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), called the Freedom Shop in a tiny building at 272 Cuba St.
The Freedom Shop in 1995

A lot has changed since then – the building made way for the ill-named “bypass”, the Cuba St district was thoroughly gentrified, the Freedom Shop is now in Newtown and the future of printed material is uncertain.