In the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, New Yorkers are showing the best of humanity, self-organizing to provide mutual aid in spite of the establishment's continued failure to turn the lights back on. Free kitchens were distributing hot meals within hours. Thousands of pounds of food, clothing, and other donations have been distributed across Red Hook, Staten Island, the Rockaways, and Coney Island. Cleanup of flood damage has begun, and volunteers continue to go door-to-door in the neglected buildings that still lack heat and electricity. Of course, this encouraging response does not minimize the true scope of tragedy this storm has left behind. We must continue to provide for each other and, as we do, show the world that another way of relating to one another is not only possible, but necessary in the face of economic and ecological catastrophe.
But we must not forget that the twin catastrophes of climate change and capitalism are deeply interconnected. The market sees only resources to be extracted, not a world to be shared or communities to be protected. The 1% continue to push for (and the banks continue to finance) more coal, oil, and natural gas, and they don't care how many mountains they must destroy or communities they must frack to increase their profits. Wall Street-owned politicians from all political parties are complicit, competing only about who will drill more. The result is a warmed planet and warmed oceans where superstorms like Sandy are increasingly common. And when the storms hit, we aren't all impacted equally. In New York and across the globe, poor and marginalized communities, already suffering from austerity and dismantled social services, are always hit the hardest and the last to receive aid from the established channels.
In response to the failure of the State and capitalism to provide for our needs, relief work like #OccupySandy is a beautiful, necessary, and logical response for social movements who are committed to replacing economic and social injustice with solidarity and people-powered solutions. But the 1% would be glad to have an army of volunteers to replace the safety net they cut and clean-up the mess they created. If we want to protect ourselves from the next storm or BP-style spill, we have to continue building the structures of mutual aid and support that will deal with crisis equitably. But we must also build a mass movement to address the systemic problems that create climate crises. After Sandy, we are not merely rebuilding the status quo; we are building a new world. This is why Occupy Wall Street stands in solidarity with the on-going Tar Sands Blockade and other direct actions to stop the destruction caused by greed and profit. In Texas, activists have held a tree-sit for 50 days and are calling for solidarity actions across the world. Over 20 cities have already answered the call. Occupy Wall Street and Occupy the Pipeline will join with many others to protest dirty power on November 17.
In New York and New Jersey, many of us are busy supporting those who have been left in the dark by Sandy. But we encourage everyone who is able to take action! See below for more information about the Global Campaign Against Fossil Fuels in New York on November 17th and the Tar Sands Blockade day of action on November 19th. To find out how to help the recovery efforts, check out interoccupy.net/occupysandy.
Occupy Sandy volunteers feed hungry FEMA workers
November 17th: Earth Eviction Defense - Global Campaign Against Fossil Fuels
When: 1 PM Saturday, November 17, 2012
Where: 42nd St and 6th Avenue, Bryant Park
People of the World: Rise up against Dirty Power!
Call for mass direct action
A Renewed Sense of Urgency for the Autumn of Unity
LOCAL ACTION / NEW YORK CITY - Join hundreds of New Yorkers from upstate and downstate as they converge in Bryant Park in Times Square as part of a global week of action protesting the social, environmental and climatic devastation of the fossil fuel industry, in solidarity with actions by Green Umbrella, Tar Sands Blockade, Push Europe Climate Justice, Occupy Melbourne, 350.org, and many grassroots organizations all over the planet. The group will march to key locations that include bank headquarters and media centers, all of whom are either actively responsible for climate change or are complicit in spreading climate disinformation. More than just a march, this gathering will perform a whole range of informative and eye-catching spectacles including everything from eating a giant mountain-shaped cake to staging a news report in a public fountain to mining for coal in the decorative gardens of New York’s financial centers. If you are in New York City, please join us!
GLOBAL CONTEXT - Sandy has brought death and destruction to the US Northeast this fall. Drought covered much of America's Midwest this summer. A recent report predicts that, by 2030, 100 million people will perish as a result of the greenhouse gases that corporations emit and Wall Street bankrolls. In America, the silence regarding climate change from our media and politicians, even as nature screams, is deafening. While here in New York we struggle to rebuild in the wake of Sandy, a resistance against corporate induced global warming is needed now more than ever.
Join us on November 17th in an International Earth Eviction Defense to prevent the 1% from foreclosing on the planet. The Earth Eviction Defense will be occurring ahead of UN climate talks in Doha this November. As the Kyoto Protocol expires this year, what happens at this gathering will have a long lasting impact on the future of the earth. It is not a positive sign that world leaders have chosen to gather in the capital of an oil dictatorship to discuss the impact of fossil fuels on our atmosphere. We in New York have seen what climate change looks like; police guarding gas stations as fuel grows thin, furniture upside down along rubble strewn streets, eighty-year-olds trapped in the cold, dark, twentieth floor of housing projects. Sadly, much of the world is already familiar with these scenarios; the products of savage inequality and a reckless abhorrence of nature.
We have a different vision.
Our struggle is global. Now is the time for a mass mobilization of direct action. We call on comrades and allies around the globe to target local sites of dirty power with sit-ins, blockades, pickets, flash mobs, occupations and other forms of nonviolent direct action. Choose a new target or link an existing campaign to this larger movement.
Together we can build a world based on truly renewable energy sources, a world in which health, biodiversity and labor are respected and protected.
System Change, Not Climate Change!
Please post your actions on our facebook event site!: http://www.facebook.com/events/110516695773312/?ref=ts&fref=ts
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Join the conversation at https://lists.mayfirst.org/mailman/listinfo/AutumnofUnity
November 19: Tar Sands Blockade Calls For Solidarity Actions
(via Earth First! Newsire)
Alright, eco-warriors, consider yourselves on notice. Tar Sands Blockade is stepping our game up, and we’re calling on you to do the same.
We’ll be throwing down in a big way next Monday, November 19th, somewhere near Nacogdoches, Texas, the heart of outlaw territory in this region for hundreds of years, and we want you to do the same. If you’re close enough or able to travel, of course we’d love to have you here with us, but we also want to see communities rising up and defending their homes from the wanton destruction of extractive industry everywhere.
TSB is dedicated to fighting this tar sands pipeline running through our collective backyard (or front yard, as the case may be), but we can do the math. We know that extraction is the lifeblood of the machine, the foundation of the crisis known as capitalism, and that only by building communities of resistance can people opt out of the system and watch it return to dust. So we call on the radical environmental community to show solidarity with the struggle against the tar sands, recognizing that our struggle is just a piece of the larger struggle against extraction and that you need to do what makes sense for your community.
Our message is simple: climate catastrophe is social injustice manifest and nothing less than a slow but sure genocide of the have-nots perpetrated by those with extraordinary privilege. The only way to survive climate chaos is by building community resiliency across all boundaries based on mutual aid and respect. The community that resists together persists together, so join with your neighbors and defend your homes from the onslaught of resource extraction.
The state, knowing that they can no longer ignore or mock us, has escalated its fight back against our campaign. At our last action, the two blockaders arrested had their phones stolen by police while they seek subpoenas for records, but they don’t scare us. Let’s school them on why direct action gets the goods with an eruption of community resistance against tar sands and all the other fucked up extractive industries nestled in our backyards.
Check out this page for suggestions on targets and action ideas, but recognize that you know best about what your community needs. When you get your action planned, let us know about it and send any media you have to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can spread the word far and wide. There are already 22 solidarity actions planned for November 14th through 20th, let’s keep that number growing and blow the lid off this thing all over the world.
Finally, thanks for the ongoing love and support. The day-to-day work here is a constant struggle, but knowing that y’all got our backs makes it easier to push on through and focus on what matters.
Loving and raging for the wild,
Tar Sands Blockader