Announcing To Change Everything!

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After months of labor and coordination, we are proud to present our most ambitious effort yet. To Change Everything is a new multimedia overview of the anarchist project, updated for the 21st century. It is a primer for the curious, a polemic for the entrenched, a point of departure for everyone who longs for another world.

To Change Everything includes a free full-color 48-page print publication, a video by Submedia.tv, a responsive website featuring the text in 6 languages (with 14 more to come), and a sticker and poster campaign. Collectives in 19 countries across five continents have prepared two dozen different versions of the project, each tailored to match the local context.

Order copies to give out at events—distribute them around your neighborhood, college campus, community center, or workplace—leave one as your calling card when you interrupt business as usual. Put the sticker up on public transportation and anywhere else people might notice it. Circulate the website and video online, too!

Visit the website
Order print copies : EnglishEspañol

Another page, The Secret Is to Begin, offers an array of further resources as a next step for readers.

It’s high time for a project like this. All around the world, conflict is intensifying between human beings and authoritarian systems. We’re seeing uprisings from Bosnia to Brazil, autonomous zones in Greece and Rojava, fascist parties entering European parliaments. In the United States, successive waves of dispossession and injustice have swept new sectors of society into revolt one after another. The student movements of 2009, the Occupy movement of 2011, the unrest that spread from Ferguson in 2014—all of these have produced a population hungry for new visions. With faith in government, capitalism, policing, and all the other authoritarian institutions of our day at an all-time low, the time is ripe to open the way to liberation—and if we don’t seize the opportunity, others will exploit the situation for their own nefarious ends. To Change Everything steps into the breach.

When we first pitched this project, we promised to make 100,000 copies. We swiftly recognized that wouldn’t be enough. Supporters donated over $22,000 via Kickstarter, and a few generous comrades contributed over $10,000 more. Thanks to them, we’ve been able to deliver more than we originally envisioned. We’ve helped collectives in Brazil, Argentina, Romania, and Slovenia fund their print versions; we’ve earmarked 3000 copies for prisoner support groups to send to prisoners in the US; and we made almost twice as many print copies ourselves as we proposed to.

Altogether, we printed 175,000 copies for North America: 150,000 in English and 25,000 in Spanish. Active Distribution printed 10,000 more in English to distribute throughout the UK and Europe. The TCE group in Germany made 10,000 copies for their first print run; the group in Brazil has already gone through 4000 copies. Release events have taken place in Brazil, Argentina, Canada, Germany, Croatia, and Slovenia, as well as the US.

All this is thanks to 100% volunteer labor. We extend our deepest appreciation to Submedia, Active Distribution, the dozens of translators and designers and publishers who crafted their own versions of this project, the hundreds of donors who sponsored them, and you for distributing them.

We still have some loose ends to tie up. We have at least 14 more languages to add to the website. The Ex-Worker is about to release an audio version. Please send us photos of To Change Everything in action to illustrate our updates!

We’re still seeking translators and publishers to prepare additional versions of this project. We would love to hear from comrades in Indonesia, Japan, Australia, and elsewhere. The idea is for you to craft a version of To Change Everything adapted to your context and your ideas. Also, prisoner support groups may request copies postage-free while supplies last. To invite a delegation to present To Change Everything where you are, or to speak on anarchist ideas and strategy in general, contact us.

Beyond Whistleblowing

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Citizenfour is just the latest expression of public fascination with the figure of the whistleblower. Jesselyn Radack, Thomas Drake, Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden—the whistleblower defects from within the halls of power to inform us about how power is being misused, delivering forbidden information to the people like the holy fire of Prometheus.

But can the whistleblower save us? Is whistleblowing enough? What limitations are coded into a strategy of social change based around whistleblowing, and what would it take to go beyond them?

Continue reading after the jump.

Episode #32: White Supremacy & Capitalism

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#32: White Supremacy and Capitalism, from 1492 to Ferguson – Rebellion has erupted around the country in the aftermath of grand jury decisions to allow the murderers of Mike Brown in Ferguson and Eric Garner in New York to go free without legal charges. Why did this happen, when authorities knew that this would spark furious protests and international condemnation? In Episode 32 of the Ex-Worker, Clara and Alanis try to understand the persistence of racist police violence by delving into the historical roots of capitalism and white supremacy in European conquest and colonization of the Americas and the transatlantic slave trade. Along with a survey of resistance and backlash since the grand jury announcements, we share excerpts from the recent feature “The Thin Blue Line is a Burning Fuse,” tracing the role of anti-police anger in catalyzing nearly all recent major social upheavals around the globe. Agency, a new anarchist media project, shares an excerpt from an article analyzing the Ebola outbreak and anarchist perspectives on public health. We run through a wide range of news, discuss listener comments on transcripts and international coverage, and even offer a radical holiday song!

You can download this and all of our previous episodes online. You can also subscribe in iTunes here or just add the feed URL to your podcast player of choice. Rate us on iTunes and let us know what you think, or send us an email to podcast@crimethinc.com. You can also call us 24 hours a day at 202–59-NOWRK, that is, 202–596–6975.

From Ferguson to Oakland

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The movement that began in Ferguson in response to the murder of Michael Brown has spread around the United States, setting off nightly clashes in the Bay Area. Scrambling to keep up with events, our contacts in Oakland have composed this overview of the past 17 days of anti-police revolt. They describe the trajectory of die-ins, marches, riots, blockades, barricading, and looting, and explore the implications for the future of protest movements around the country.

Read the feature.

Why Break Windows?

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From the initial revolt in Ferguson last August to the demonstrations in Oakland and Berkeley last week, property destruction has been central to a new wave of struggle against police violence. But what does vandalizing businesses have to do with protesting police brutality? Why break windows?

First, as countless others have argued, because property destruction is an effective tactic. From the Boston Tea Party to the demonstrations against the 1999 World Trade Organization summit in Seattle, property destruction has been an essential part of many struggles. It can pressure or punish opponents by inflicting an economic cost. It can mobilize potential comrades by demonstrating that the ruling forces are not invincible. It can force issues that otherwise would be suppressed—we would certainly not be having a nationwide conversation about race, class, and policing were it not for the courageous actions of a few vandals in Ferguson. Finally, it conveys an uncompromising rejection of the prevailing order, opening space in which people may begin to imagine another.

Continue reading after the jump.

#31: Live at the Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair!

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#31: Live from the Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair! – We’re always looking for ways to up the ante at The Ex-Worker, our twice-monthly podcast of anarchist ideas and action. So we decided to record our 31st episode in front of a live audience at the Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair! Clara and Alanis started off with our usual Hot Wire news, and then interviewed a wide range of participants from the book fair about workshops or presentations they did or projects they represented. Interviewees spoke about a writing project on southern insurrectionary history, the Can Vies eviction and riots in Barcelona, Spain, and rethinking prisoner support based on experiences with anti-authoritarian queer and transgender prisoners. A supporter read a moving letter by Luke O’Donovan sent from prison specifically to be shared at the book fair, while another shared an update about an anarchist injured and arrested at a Philadelphia solidarity demonstration. Participants from the New York City Anarchist Black Cross, the Durham Inside/Outside Alliance, and the UNControllables, an anarchist student group, each discussed their projects, followed by event announcements and prisoner birthdays to round out a lively evening of anarchy in the southeast.

You can download this and all of our previous episodes online. You can also subscribe in iTunes here or just add the feed URL to your podcast player of choice. Rate us on iTunes and let us know what you think, or send us an email to podcast@crimethinc.com. You can also call us 24 hours a day at 202–59-NOWRK, that is, 202–596–6975.

The Thin Blue Line Is a Burning Fuse

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It should have come as no surprise yesterday when the grand jury in St. Louis refused to indict Darren Wilson, the police officer who murdered Michael Brown last August in Ferguson, Missouri. Various politicians and media outlets had labored to prepare the public for this for months in advance. They knew what earnest liberals and community leaders have yet to acknowledge: that it is only possible to preserve the prevailing social order by giving police officers carte blanche to kill black men at will. Otherwise, it would be impossible to maintain the racial and economic inequalities upon which this society is based. In defiance of widespread outrage, even at the cost of looting and arson, the legal system will always protect officers from the consequences of their actions—for without them, it could not exist.

The verdict of the grand jury is not a failure of the justice system, but a lesson in what it is there to do in the first place. Likewise, the unrest radiating from Ferguson is not a tragic failure to channel protest into productive venues, but an indication of the form all future social movements will have to take to stand any chance of addressing the problems that give rise to them.

Read the feature.

From Occupy to Ferguson

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In early 2011, in response to austerity measures, protesters occupied the capitol building in Madison, Wisconsin. It was a localized struggle, but it gained traction on the popular imagination out of all proportion to its size. This clearly indicated that something big was coming, and some of us even brainstormed about how to prepare for it—but all the same, the nationwide wave of Occupy a few months later caught us flat-footed.

In August 2014, after white police officer Darren Wilson killed unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, a week and a half of pitched protests shook the town. Once again, these were localized, but they loomed big in the popular imagination. Police kill something like three people a day in the United States; over the past few years, we’ve seen a pattern of increasing outrage against these murders, but until that August it hadn’t gained much leverage on the public consciousness. What was new about the Ferguson protests was not just that people refused to cede the streets to the police for days on end, nor that they openly defied the “community leadership” that usually pacifies such revolts. It was also that all around the country, people were finally paying attention and expressing approval.

Like the occupation of the capitol building in Madison, this may portend things to come. Ferguson is a microcosm of the United States. Could we see an uprising like this spread nationwide? It seems almost possible, right now, as the governor of Missouri has declared a preemptive state of emergency and people all over the US are preparing demonstrations for the day that the grand jury refuses to indict Darren Wilson.

Continue reading after the jump.

The Ex-Worker #30: Anarchism in Chile, Part II

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#30: Anarchism in Chile, Part II – The Ex-worker keeps our eyes to the south as we continue our in-depth exploration of anarchism in Chile. While our last episode sought to provide context and history, this episode delves into two recent cases of repression by the Chilean State against anarchists and discusses the importance of prisoner support in the anarchist movement. We interview Victor Montoya, an anarchist who was framed up and spent 16 months in pretrial detention, as well as Luciano “Tortuga” Pitronello, a comrade who faced terrorism charges after a bomb he was carrying prematurely detonated. While Tortuga’s body was damaged in the course of this ordeal, his spirit remains resilient, and he shares inspiring stories and sage advice over vegan sandwiches at the autonomous library Sante Geronimo Caserio in Santiago. We’ll offer a review of the Chicago Conspiracy, a documentary film which illustrates some of Chile’s radical history and present through music, celebration, memory and riot, tackle some thoughtful listener feedback about democracy and anarchy, and top it all off with news from struggles around the globe.

You can download this and all of our previous episodes online. You can also subscribe in iTunes here or just add the feed URL to your podcast player of choice. Rate us on iTunes and let us know what you think, or send us an email to podcast@crimethinc.com. You can also call us 24 hours a day at 202–59-NOWRK, that is, 202–596–6975.

To Change Everything: Final Countdown

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One month ago, we announced the kickstarter for To Change Everything, our ambitious anarchist outreach project. The final hours of the fundraising campaign are upon us now. This is your last chance to help us get this project off the ground.

Since that announcement, we’ve confirmed translations in several more languages and arranged a separate printing of the English version for the UK and Europe. Programmers from Oregon to São Paulo are coding the websites; collectives from Russia to Maharlika (the so-called Philippines) are finalizing their renderings of the video and text. Altogether, the network producing different versions of To Change Everything spans twenty groups in as many countries.

Thanks to the generous support of hundreds of donors, we will be able to:

  • print 100,000 full-color copies of the English version of *To Change Everything*
  • send 2000 copies to prisoner support groups
  • produce 50,000 stickers promoting the online version
  • and donate $400 each to fund the print versions in Brazil, Argentina, Romania, and Slovenia.

We are still hoping to raise enough money to produce 10,000 copies of a full-color Spanish version for North America. We hope that in the remaining hours, enough last-minute donations will come in to cover this. If you’ve already donated, or you can’t afford to, please just do your part to bring this project to others’ attention. The limited edition shirts, stickers, and posters we’ve made for the fundraiser will not be available after Thursday evening.

We will be excited to put To Change Everything at your disposal, in its print, video, and web incarnations, about a month from now. Thanks to comrades like @thetinyraccoon and Mask Magazine for doing their part to support this project—and thank you.

Now Accepting Bitcoins

In response to a few folks who have requested it, we’re pleased to announce that we can now accept bitcoins as donations for To Change Everything. Click the button below to either pay with a Coinbase account or to get an address to send the ol’ bitcoins to. You’ll still qualify for the Kickstarter rewards: simply email us at ‘hello@crimethinc.com’ after sending the bitcoins and tell us the amount you sent, when you sent it, and what reward level you’d like to receive. Though your contribution won’t be added to the posted total on the Kickstarter page itself, we will dedicate those funds directly to the TCE project.

Donate Bitcoins

 

 

“We often thought that the French police were missing a splendid opportunity for ruining our paper by subscribing to a hundred copies and sending no voluntary contributions.”
-Peter Kropotkin, Memoirs of a Revolutionist