Category Archives: governance

Kali Akuno: “From Rebellion to Revolution”

“What we have been proposing, and will offer in this process, is that we organize and build towards the execution of a general strike. The beginning of a general strike under current conditions starts with People’s Assemblies in the streets debating and voting on having a general strike. This is how a largely street protest movement can blossom into an instrument of dual power that could radically transform society.”

“Today’s Activism: Spontaneous, Leaderless, but Not Without Aim”

“Welcome to 21st-century activism, where spontaneous and leaderless movements have been defined by their organic births and guided on the fly by people whose preferences, motivations and ideas may not always align.”

John Westmoreland: “The Paris Commune: When workers ran a city”

“Between March and May 1871 the workers of Paris ran their city as a collective, democratic government of the workers known as the Paris Commune.”

Chris Horner: “Hannah Arendt And The Lost Treasure Of The American Revolution”

“The public space of freedom was not preserved by either of the two revolutions mainly discussed in On Revolution, and we should include their failure alongside that of the Bolsheviks when we read Arendt’s appreciation of the fact that Rosa Luxemburg ‘was far more afraid of a deformed revolution than an unsuccessful one’”.

Jeremy Popkin: “Vive la révolution!”

“Must radical political change generate uncontainable violence?  The French Revolution is both a cautionary and inspiring tale.”

Jennifer Gonzalez Covarrubias: “A Mexican indigenous town’s environmental revolt”

“The indigenous town of Cheran is practically an independent enclave tucked into the lawless mountains of western Mexico.  Its residents have their own system of government based on community assemblies.”

William Dalrymple: Review of “The Buried” by Peter Hessler – Life, death and revolution in Egypt

‘In this scheme, the fall of Mubarak, the chaos of the Muslim Brotherhood, and the restoration of authoritarian rule under Sisi also follow rhythms familiar to Egyptian history. Hessler sees a mirror in the story of the pharoah Akhenaten – a failed revolutionary whose attempt to introduce monotheism was crushed in “what was possibly the first military coup in human history” by his general Horemheb, and whose tyranny was consolidated by Horemheb’s successor Ramesses II.’

Alex Kostantopoulos: “The Law of the Zapatista: A Presentation about the Laws Passed by EZLN”

“In the autonomous municipalities of Zapatistas, laws that are passed from the Council of Governance are not enforced by police or a judicial system but through a way that treats offenders as members of the community.  Justice is delivered by the authorities of the Zapatistas. They resolve issues among the members of the community and also between Zapatistas and non-Zapatistas.”

Bernard E. Harcourt: “The Counterrevolution: How Our Government Went to War Against Its Own Citizens”

The Counterrevolution is a penetrating and disturbing account of the rise of counterinsurgency, first as a military strategy but increasingly as a way of ruling ordinary Americans. Harcourt shows how counterinsurgency’s principles–bulk intelligence collection, ruthless targeting of minorities, pacifying propaganda–have taken hold domestically despite the absence of any radical uprising. This counterrevolution against phantom enemies, he argues, is the tyranny of our age.”

J. Daniel Elam: Hong Kong: “When We Burn You Will Burn With Us”

‘Like Hong Kong itself, the current protests are a harbinger for the rest of the world. Old revolutions promised egalitarianism on the basis of a shared world to win. A revolution for our times promises very little, except perhaps an egalitarianism based on a shared world in which there is nothing left to lose. “When we burn you will burn with us,” graffiti at the University of Hong Kong says. Is that a threat or a resignation? It’s both: for the future, there is nothing left at all.’