It is now five months on from the 2014 Bristol Bookfair. Despite some crap weather in the late morning, the sun shone later and the turnout was pretty good as once again hundreds turned out to grab some political literature, attend the discussions, network & socialise. As usual the Bookfair was self-funding, with stall fees, donations, the cafe and after-party combining to more than cover costs. The 2014 Bookfair Collective has now dispersed, and an event in 2015 will only happen if enough people come together to make it happen? With the next UK General Election due around May 7th 2015, an Anarchist Bookfair around that time could be part of an intervention into the ongoing failure of UK party politics & parliamentary rule, and the dire need for some serious alternatives!
There’s a good chance you may be in need of some more anarchist literature & discussions to inspire you with ideas? Lets face it the world hasn’t exactly improved since April! Issues such as resource wars, climate change, wealth inequality, privatisation, political/financial corruption, corporate & state control, nationalism, racism, religion, sexual abuse, to name just a few, continue to impact negatively on all our lives, and we can be certain the political parties wont solve these problems for us. So here are a few upcoming events and resources offering you the anarchist alternative…. Continue reading Books, more Bookfairs, and Ideas
Six weeks on and the dust has settled on the 2013 Bristol anarchist bookfair. even the sun has finally returned again (for a while). Here’s a short review of the 2013 Bookfair written by one member of the 2013 Bookfair Collective.
Two things seem to happen when we have an Anarchist Bookfair in Bristol. Firstly the sun shines, it did again on 20 April for the first time in ages, justifying our gamble on a venue change, to The Trinity Centre, with a large outdoor garden & space, ideal for outside fun, and meetings focusing on land, food, the commons and permaculture. The kids enjoyed the bouncy castle too! Second up we again had a period of heightened political tension – Thatcher’s death this time, not more riots on Stokes Croft, but a mini riot at the end of the Easton Death Party on the day the bastard died.
Those factors, along with extensive online publicity, posters & stickers, plus 65 stalls (sadly a few failed to show on the day), and 38 wide-ranging meetings (including the Radical History Zone down the road at Hydra Bookshop), ensured an excellent turnout of around 1000 people to the 5th Bristol Bookfair. Kebele’s vegan cafe was overrun, our donations buckets overflowed as we covered our costs, and we’re already trying to book in next year at Trinity Centre – although our preferred date of Saturday 17th May 2014 looks unavailable. Continue reading Anarchism sunny side up
The Government has sent a clear message to anti-workfare campaigners. Workfare cannot be beaten in the courts.
The recent court case, Reilly and Wilson V the Secretary of State, initially sounded like a huge victory for those opposed to the workfare programme. Yet when the dust settled it soon became clear that it was a hollow victory. Although the judge had ruled the Government had breached their own rules, nothing had really changed. The DWP has moved quickly to change the regulations to comply with the judgement.
It may be possible that some claimants, unjustly sanctioned, will be able to claim a repayment of any lost benefits. Yet, the Government are refusing to pay out until they have exhausted all legal avenues. Even then claimants are again going to face being forced onto schemes that the Government have had to acknowledge don’t actually work. All evidence shows that you are more likely to find work if you don’t waste your time on the work programme.
So what next? If legal methods don’t bring results, then a return to the methods that get results must the order of the day. Direct action, organising and publically shaming those that profit at the expense of the unemployed.
So join the Boycott Workfare for a week of action on 18-24 March against workfare exploiters everywhere. Bristol Solidarity Federation, as part of an on-going and sustained campaign, actively organised with others against Holland and Barrett’s involvement in Workfare. Resulting in the company, who were planning to take on thousands of unpaid workers, abandoning their exploitative plans. Now the Solidarity Federation has now turned its attention to Poundland. Continue reading The fight against workfare goes on