Plan C: J20

The Plan C leaflet from the J20 demonstration – in London on June 20th, 2015 – for the record.

Leaflet Text:

Austerity is working just fine.

We can’t keep hoping that the powerful will wake up to reason and stop the Plan A of Austerity. Why would they? It’s working for them.

The rich don’t suffer from austerity. They profit from it. Their lives are shielded away from the high-frequency trading hyperreality of capitalism. This vortex of violence is for their benefit. Capital rolls on, trailing food banks, evictions and zero-hour contracts in its wake. Capital isn’t restrained by borders, but guard dog states enforce them on the majority of the worlds populations, looking on as thousands of people drown in the Mediterranean. Capital absorbs everything and everyone, and spits us out when we are no longer useful.

There is no solace to be found in Plan B – a call for the return to the social democracy of old. Whilst capital is still in power, it will quickly extinguish anything which threatens its capacity to profit. Calls to turn back to the old days mutate into demands to reinstate racist violence and xenophobia, while everything we produce continues to be stolen from us: our wealth, our health, our creativity, our compassion.

We won’t be saved by the Green surge, a left-turning Labour, or proposals to tinker with the terms of our corporate kleptocracy.

Together, we must stand. Everything for Everyone.

Counter-power is growing, the only way to secure our own lives and futures becomes a threat to the stability of capital. It is the movement we need and the reality that we all have a stake in constructing.

Everything for Everyone. That is our Plan C.

Stagnation

Maybe the trick is to develop a strategy that will take advantage of the defensive struggles that capital is having itself. It is stuck in stagnation for good reasons – the collapse of its ability to refinance further rounds of accumulation (credit crunch continuing because the ratio of constant to variable capital is impossibly large), and now austerity brings crisis upon crisis since valourisation fails all the more with stagnation-driven desperation and cuts. The new technologies that frame a hoped for solution to the long term composition imbalance have seen initiatives in circulation (delivery drones! ocado home delivery, hardly high level labour growth here) but the staples remain resources and weapons (always good for productivity, with suitably racist ideological gimmicks like 9/11, 7/7, Libya, Syria, Charlie Hebdo to push along public approval). But new delivery technologies are hardly the ‘frames’ that Ned Ludd and the like attacked, though to be sure, the Luddites soon identified the enemy as the people wielding the new technologies not the frames themselves. Targetting those that manage the delivery systems is one level of activity. The other areas are weapons, mining, policing, war, and then privatisation as the attempt to monetise the entire private sphere in a last ditch scramble to colonise new domains for production, but there is only so much scope, and austerity limits consumer drives in any case.
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In all this, I think the targeting of profit taking is key. But not just the corruption, bonuses, tax breaks and peripheral moments of profit. The central crime is surplus value extraction and those overseer Captains of Industry who need to turn that surplus into capital through some sort of valourisation process with investment and innovation, well, they are probably the most fragile part of the plan. What would hurt profit taking more than having service workers, military and high tech workers all challenge the basis of that extraction? Under the banner of abolition of the wage system of course (and not some swap out for barter or work chits, but rather) A living wage for all, irrespective of origin, capability or age or sector of work. CEOs and the unemployed on the same rate (‘unemployment for all, not just the ruling class’, would be the slogan to appeal to the luxuriant fraction amongst us). Universal across the board abandonment of money and the money changers not just out of the temple, but the temples torn down, repurposed into hospices, refugee welcome halls, and bingo for everyone. Saul from Breaking Bad calling out the numbers. Huzzah!

Beekeepers see 42% of US honeybee colonies die off in a single year

beeyellow

Associated Press
Wednesday 13 May 2015 21.48 BST

Beekeepers see 42% of US honeybee colonies die off in a single year
Summer deaths raise concern among entomologists as more than two in five colonies are lost: a ‘loud signal that there’s some bad things happening’

More than two out of five American honeybee colonies died in the past year, and surprisingly, the worst die-off was in the summer, according to a federal survey.

Since April 2014, beekeepers lost 42.1% of their colonies, the second-highest rate in nine years, according to an annual survey conducted by a bee partnership that includes the US Department of Agriculture.

“What we’re seeing with this bee problem is just a loud signal that there’s some bad things happening with our agro-ecosystems,” said study co-author Keith Delaplane at the University of Georgia. “We just happen to notice it with the honeybee because they are so easy to count.”

But it’s not quite as dire as it sounds. That’s because after a colony dies, beekeepers split their surviving colonies, start new ones, and the numbers go back up again, said Delaplane and study co-author Dennis vanEngelsdorp of the University of Maryland. But that pushes the bees to their limits, he said.

What shocked the entomologists is that this is the first time they have noticed bees dying more in the summer than the winter, vanEngelsdorp said. The survey found beekeepers lost 27.4% of their colonies this summer. That’s up from 19.8% the previous summer.

Seeing massive colony losses in summer is like seeing “a higher rate of flu deaths in the summer than winter,” vanEngelsdorp said. “You just don’t expect colonies to die at this rate in the summer.”

Oklahoma, Illinois, Iowa, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Maine and Wisconsin all saw more than 60% of their hives die since April 2014, according to the survey.

“Most of the major commercial beekeepers get a dark panicked look in their eyes when they discuss these losses and what it means to their businesses,” said Pennsylvania State University entomology professor Diana Cox-Foster. She wasn’t part of the study, but praised it.

Delaplane and vanEngelsdorp said a combination of mites, poor nutrition and pesticides are to blame for the bee deaths.

Dick Rogers, chief beekeeper for pesticide maker Bayer, said the loss figure is “not unusual at all” and said the survey shows an end result of more colonies: 2.74 million hives in 2015, up from 2.64 million in 2014.

That does not mean bee health is improving or stable, vanEngelsdorp said.