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So What are You Going to this Autumn? ESF or ISF?

category national | public consultation / irish social forum | feature author Saturday September 11, 2004 18:56author by seedot Report this post to the editors

'But what is it? Should I go? And will they make me wear sandals?'

The summer is always full of sport - the good weather sends us outdoors and between the cycling and the walking and the boating and the wrestling it can all get a bit competitive. But now that Mayday and Bush are behind us, and the summer is ending we move from sport to debate in the flow of the seasons. The Autumn is conference season and the movements generally have their shindigs around now. From Grassroots to SIPTU, from the Independent Media Support Group (c. 25 members) to the British TUC (c. 7 million members) it can be called a gathering or a meeting or a conference or whatever.

From the committee rooms, the meetings and.. err.. the meeting rooms of the ongoing social forum process the full shocking story.

The Social Forum movement will be in the news this Autumn: The second Irish Social Forum is planned for Dublin and Ken Livingstone and the GLC are about to invest at least ST£400,000 and a lot of time and effort supporting the European Social Forum the week after in London. Predictably neither event has avoided a generous helping of controversy on the side

On 15th - 17th October this year the European Social Forum will take place in London and between the Alexandar Palace and spaces booked in Camden and Bloomsbury up to 50,000 attendees can be catered for. There are plans underway to organise an Irish Social Forum the weekend before that, with a social evening, a thematic conference and a closing plenary switching between city centre locations and UCD. This will be the second ISF while the event in London, involving the Lord Mayor , the trade unions and the people behind the Stop the War campaign will be the third European Social Forum..

The Social Forums are difficult to pin down politically and in many ways that is their strength. Consistent with the Porto Allegre World Social Forum principles, the social forum doesn't make decisions or issue calls – this is left to the Assembly of Social Movements which have started to take place directly after the forum proper. The social movements in Florence two years ago called for the anti-war demonstrations on Feb 15th last year and in some ways could claim to be a voice for that 2nd superpower, civil society, that was spoken of at the time. By consciously challenging existing political forms and refusing to be a “locus of power” the Social Forum model has developed to provide a conference for the movement of movements.

I met the group of people who are organising the Irish Social Forum in Dublin a few weeks ago to discuss the upcoming event. The summer holidays deplete the numbers but the group has been meeting fairly consistently over the last year – forming a network that is now quite sizeable and can call on a certain infrastructural ability that you would normally associate with a much larger organisation. The range of participants was, as usual, impressive. Of course with a range like this there are going to be tensions and differences of emphasis – again, paradoxically part of the strength of the social forum.

UK Indymedia ESF Page
The Irish Social Forum Invite Individuals and Groups to get Involved
Wombles Critique of the ESF Process
Most Recent UK IMC Feature on the ESF
Open ESF Site
Official ESF Site
All the Backstage ESF Drama from the Weekly Worker

The ESF in London has been the scene of arguments, walk outs and accusations of operatic proportions. The official, £40,000 website is dwarfed by the range of material and commentary on the faults of the process, the weaknesses of the model and the all round excitement of the bloodsport that is competitive politics. By far the best example is the weekly worker website which documents every coffeebreak and its associated gossip. While the official forum site, paid for by the Trade Union and other large donors, is at the Alexandar Palace, Londons largest conference centre, there is a seperate Forum on Communication Rights in Camden which will contain the Indymedia centre. Autonomous spaces and groups will provide a vast and flowing fringe – how this interacts with the main event will be a key question about the forum in London this year. Paris, last year, was criticised for being too scattered – even with the political spectrum being wider the forum looks like being geographically tighter this year. What is certain is that the rows early on have meant a lot more space has been booked and events planned than may otherwise have been the case.

The Irish forum is also changing structure this year. Last year's planning was marked by the prospect of going up against the WEF, due to take place in Dublin in October 2003, which inspired memorable Teachers Club meetings as the professional radicals had to come to terms with the Mexican shake – showing consensus with a wrist shake of both hands raised forward from your body that came from the Zapatistas to a back room on Parnell square. These meetings of over a hundred people drafting a leaflet (I kid you not) stretched the process to its limit – but last October when the social forum happened in UCD, in the absence of the World Economic Forum which was cancelled due to 'security' concerns, the value was seen as the networks could form and share and, strangely for Irish politics, co-operate. There were 40 workshops covering a huge range of issues along with plenaries on Public Services, the Environment and Peace activism.

To try and manage the range of events a bit better this year the Irish group are working on a plan to have a video / social / intro type thing (possibly with alcohol), a full day conference on multi-culturalism with plenaries and workshops, and then a closing plenary on globalisation. This is a brave decision.In many ways focussing the movement on multiculturalism after the citizenship referendum result is only what can be expected from the social forum - the internationalist, no borders viewpoint is as close to a principle as the opposition of social to economic. But choosing to discuss globalisation by debating the role of the state in opposing globalisation, with speakers on partnership and civil society / state solutions is brave. A debate like that could show all the differences in the movement as clearly as the commonalities. But this is sort of the point really – if the conference doesn't define the movement then its not worth having and its about time that this discussion was had in Ireland. Clear the air and all that.

Because the interesting thing about the social forum is that you're not sure who will turn up and what will be the range of opinion. Choosing to look beyond the market with others for a weekend can make for a strange mix – a big diverse group of people meeting brought together by a single event. Which in many ways is the effect of sport as well. But this time out, it's not a zero sum game. The great thing about the social forum is that because of that locus of power rule nobody can really lose from a good social forum – there are no committee places to stand for, no motions to oppose, no rules committees where you can play out your power trip. Just information, debate and people. The network effects of the social forum provide the opportunity for co-operative activism as a new pasttime. Which is worth going and having a look at anyway.

author by Chekovpublication date Thu Sep 09, 2004 14:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

One of the problems with the various social forums is that they have almost from the very start been manipulated by various political parties who have used fronts in order to control them. The upcoming ESF in London has probably been the worst on this score, being largely run by a clique made up of Ken Livingstone's Greater London Authority (especially the semi-secret Socialist Action group within it) and the Socialist Workers Party. This manipulation has been detailed in great length by the UK left's gossip sheet, the Weekly Worker:

The situation has got so bad that many of the international mobilising groups have openly expressed their displeasure with the manipulations. Indeed, perhaps its finest acheivement has been to do the impossible - uniting every leftist political current in the UK, from the major NGO's to the anarchists in condemnation of the stitch up. The libertarians (everybody from indymedia uk to the wombles) have generally pulled out of the mainstream event and have set up their own 'fring' esf series of events:

In Ireland, the SWP initally attempted to control the ISF, but eventually failed and have since ignored it. Incredibly, despite not being part of it and not attending any meetings, they supplied the single Irish speaker to the ESF in Paris last year - RBB. This time around it again looks like they will simply ignore the ISF and appoint their own delegate to speak in London. They are having a meeting this saturday as the mobilising committee for the ESF, which has no links whatsoever to the ISF. This meeting has been called under the aegis of Another Europe is Possible, which was the SWP front for calling the Mayday protests. Significantly this front never really worked and never attracted any punters into its ranks beyond the party and hasn't been heard of since Mayday.

It will be amusing to see how the SWP justify their right (sorry the right of another front is laughable) to appoint the Irish delegate to the ISF, especially when there is an upcoming and active ISF which will apparently have no say in the matter!

author by shakerpublication date Thu Sep 09, 2004 15:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

No interest in or contribution to the ISF yet they are able to hold "african social forum" meetings??? Ah sure the social forum is an idea worth plugging away at.

author by paulcpublication date Thu Sep 09, 2004 16:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

see that first drop down box that probably says ALL TOPICS well click down on that and choose the option Irish Social Forum and you'll get all the previous ISF reports from last year

I was trying to find a review of the previous ISF, here is one

"i think there was a nun at the diret acction work shop"

author by dunkpublication date Fri Sep 10, 2004 18:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

thanks for the general story of how things lay with the social forum proceses, seedot and chekov

i posted
"ESF live feed to dublin a week after ISF"
a few days ago

"irish social forum is on Fri 8th Oct to Sun 10th.
european social forum is on Fri 15th Oct to Sun 17th.
sustainable irelands cultivate festival is on Thr 14th Oct to Sun 17th.

as part of the convergence festival there will be time and space given over to new media, films etc and as part of this event organiser Davy Philips has agreed to give us, indymedia/ social forum, a space in the festival- a few hours to try to make a “live connection” with the european social forum (ESF) that is happening in london.This could be in the format of live radio streams from london or better still live viewing of the discussions or pleanerys. Better still would be a web conferencing type system, whereby people in Ireland interested in the ESF but unable to get there could go to the cultivate centre (name of centre in temple bar rented by “sustainable Ireland” and venue of “convergence festival”) to participate in the process in a 2 way format using webcams/ vid recorders and beamers."

there are many useful links to further info, an imc-esf mail list has been created, there has been and will be more WIKI IRC meetings? whereby people wil meet and discuss in chat rooms over the web
thats from imc-uk link

i think we need to make stronger attempts to challenge this situation which is causing the fuss, SWP as baddies vs the rest
as i tried to do after bush visit,
there is some engagement from them on their site,
i would like to see a public discussion, we invite them (swp, iawm....and all their members) to an open discussion about all this. we have started to discuss it here in virtual land, now lets take it to real land (social forum is probably best space for this)

on another note, rather than using language such as
-a space for the left to discuss and mobilise
i prefer and feel its more effective to simply say
-something new for anyone who wants to challenge the unfairness in the world etc....
get involved with changing things....

in 10 years time i would hope that most of the world could somehow (that depends on how creative we are and how much we push things over these upcoming years) be participating in the social forum process
fringe or official, its still all part of the process- its growing

reading this article by fritjof capra might help for some trying to understand the healthy natural growth of organic networks
fritjof is an austrian quantum physicist who wrote "the tao of physics" and from that set up the "centre for ecoliteracy" in berkley, california

author by Acidpublication date Sat Sep 11, 2004 11:29author address author phone Report this post to the editors

with the ESF, anarchists in London are trying to organise their own forum for people who dont want to go to the I hear..

author by infopublication date Sun Sep 12, 2004 13:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

this link should be included:


BEYOND ESF - Wednesday 13th - Sunday 17th October

We want to continue the radicalisation that we have seen during the recent mobilisations against the WTO, G8, IMF and World Bank summits through BEYOND ESF - a self-organised, radically different space. We invite participation in discussion and direct action around specific themes: surveillance & control : social centres : precarious work : no borders : zapatismo : G8 Scotland 2005. BEYOND ESF will be based at a large legal venue, with provision for cheap food, meeting space, indymedia and alt media facilities, and evening entertainment (*also possible simultaneous translation).

For more information:
Contact: wombles(atN0spam)


European Forum On Communication Rights / Indymedia / Schnews
Thursday 14th - Sunday 17th October

The Camden Centre in central London will house an ongoing Indymedia Centre, with bar and cheap food. Thursday will see the Communication Rights Forum with a range of communications and media networks participating, with events on the other days dealing with themes such as Surveillance and the Security State, Biometric ID Cards, Migrants and Noborders, Gender, Intellectual Property, Copyright, Creative Commons, Corporate media and Alternative media etc. Saturday will see a one day event from

Contact: info(atN0spam)

IMC Wiki pages:
IMC Mailing list:
IMC uk contact: imc-uk-network(atN0spam)


The Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination

This open and autonomous initiative will function as a hub for those whose activities fall outside of and in between the spaces of culture and politics; whose actions exist between resistance and creativity. We are calling on groups and individuals from around Europe to propose actions, events and tool/tactic sharing workshops. Themes include, reclaiming contested spaces, surveillance and consumption and the brand.

Find out more: e-list - contact - james(atN0spam)


Life Despite Capitalism - Saturday 16th October

A one day event outside the ESF on "Commons and Communities", to be held at a central london university (LSE) with two strands: "ROOTS" - Discussion of visions, understanding, struggles, successes and difficulties around experiences of commons and of reclaiming our powers and communities (commons at work, traditional/indigenous commons, creative commons, alternative spaces, public services, and migrant and precarious workers). "SWARM" - will see the people working on "single issues" in the previous workshops, mixed up randomly to cross-pollinate and contaminate each other.

Contact: m.deangelis(atN0spam)


The Carnival Forum

A volitile mix of politics and pleasure... As a mobile carnival forum we intent to interlink some of the key esf venues and to take democracy to the streets en route - taking the forum out of the tradtional conference hall and to the (so called) every day people. Reaching out to the most diverse array of people possible the CF is unpredicatble, inclusve and creative. It's the jester in the esf court! - interspersing festivities with discussions, workshops and skillsharing around (but far from limited to) esf themes like peace, democracy, neoliberalism, sustainability, discrimination, the economy and work.

Contact: forumofhope(atN0spam)


Solidarity Village / UK LETS Co-operate - 13th-17th October

Join us in creating a space for co-operative projects in response to social inequalities due to the capitalist (neoliberal) system. We are creating a dynamic and participative Forum using Open Space methods to provide information about practical projects. If you think that another world is possible, know that another economy is already happening!

Under the overall themes of "Another Economy is Possible" and "Life Despite Capitalism", we present options towards a sustainable economy at the service of humanity, answering to human rights and environmental needs, not the profit motive. The event will start on the evening of Wednesday 13th October. There will be an opening circle, evening cultural events, some self-contained one day events such as Filling the Vacuum, LETS Co-operate, Commons and Communities, Another Capital is Possible, and New Forms of Democracy.

The Solidarity Village will be based at Conway Hall and London School of Economics, and will include an Information Centre, Stalls, a Cafe, Wellbeing Spaces and Creche. Proposals for seminars, debates and workshops are being combined with existing or new themes, either in separate rooms or in the open space, and rooms for independent workshops may also be booked.

Contact: admin(atN0spam)

author by APpublication date Sun Sep 12, 2004 13:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The official estimate was at first 20,000 participants, now looks like it will be 30,000 as more europeans seem to be planning on coming along - at the moment there is not the capacity for 30,000 - let alone 50!!

Accomodation is going to be a big headache!

author by Saoirsepublication date Sun Sep 12, 2004 17:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's not only the SWP who use the Social Forum idea when it suits them - at least they try to involve other people. Here in Derry, there were meetings to set up a North West Social Forum to which the SWP came and played a generally honourable role. They argued alongside others to make it as open and democratic as possible.

However, a couple of people looking to create jobs and profile for themselves, led by one particularly egoistic eejit, took control simply by appointing themselves 'the committee' and refusing to tell anyone else when there were meetings. They applied for, and got, funding from the Council. Most of this funding seems to have gone to individuals and there's no sign of the Social Forum since!

Personally, I would have preferred to see the SWP taking it over as then it would at least have met and tried to be relevant....I'm not a fan of the SWP, but they are certainly not the worst.

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 12:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

swp organised this event

from their website::
The third European Social Forum (ESF) will take place from the 14th to the 17th of October this year in London. We are writing to you to invite you to send representatives from your organisation to a European Social Forum mobilising meeting on Saturday 11th September, 2004 at 2.30pm in Wynns Hotel. Middle Abbey st.

no post re this on indymedia, would have liked to have known about it
further attempts to resolve this bulshit between diff groups
can someone give a report from it
ill contact them directly and ask for feedback

that chomsky talk is on tonight by them, maybe this can be brought up to their attention, along with the "live feed" project that is underway

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 15:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

very little up about it as yet.
im meeting the organising crew this evening and will have more leaflets etc

have talked with some africans in call shops and food shops about it. they dident know about it so big need for outreach

maybe the bank bonds boycott will get a good bit omre moententum

Related Link:
author by Badmanpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 16:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The African Socialist Forum is a 100% SWP front. It is just a particularly blatant attempt for them to organise a rival campaign, wholly controlled by them, to the broad amnesty one that was set up last weekend. Ask them about the democratic structures and decision making of the African Social Forum. Ask them what mandate they have from Africa to set up a social forum. Don't do their donkey work without having some idea of how that work will be (ab)used.

author by amandlapublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

African Social Forum has been meeting on and off for six months. Black SWP members founding members but now includes Christians, feminists, Pan Africanists and global justice campaigners, from Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe and the rest.

The ASF is a good initative and well done to the black socialists who got it on the road- Luke and Gladstone are hard workers in the community. What a pity you bash the African socialists, Bad Man. Aptly named

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

were emailed and a request for a report about last saturdays meeting was requested and asked to be added into this communication space

so hope to get that soon

author by pat cpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I wonder if amandla is RBB? Why oh why do the SWP have to set up yet another front? Who do they think they are fooling?

author by Badmanpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

1. What are the decision making structures for the ASF? Given the well-known history of the SWP to set up front groups that they totally control, why should anybody think that this is different?

2. Why have you set up an African social forum in Ireland rather than engage with the Irish social forum?

3. Why have you chosen to set up your own amnesty campaign and ignore the one that was established last weekend which included a much broader base of groups, from Sinn Fein, to RAR, to WSM and DGN?

4. Do you have any evidence for the ASF being in existence for 6 months? I have spoken to several activists about it in the last few weeks and nobody had heard of it until very recently (it was generally greeted with hilarity by the way).

5. Do you really think that your standard two line answer about people doing hard work answers anything?

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

having these anonymous online bitching sessions is not helpful

i hope that in the irish social forum we will meet face to face, openly and respectfully state our grievences with other "factions", resolv problems and get on with the more important work

anti swp heads, you knock them,, but if it is them that are setting up these things, fair play
what are you doing,
im not a fan of swp way but im very interested in getting in contact with as many of the african community in ireland
why, so that they will start using this system, indymedia, tell their stories and let things grow.
im sure theres already a few that are but i dont know them yet

more diversity
more color
more life

im off now to my local internet cafe run by an african man to do some work
rather than ranting, cut the shit, be positive and go out and do likewise
support this initiave

indymedia and social forum are the 2 most progressive systems on planet
make it bigger better
the sari football against racism is also on this weekend so lots of outltets for indymedia work on the streets

author by paulcpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 18:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

the answer to that is that they are most porbably supporting the irish social forum

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

is posted under
Amnesty For All

for more info on the non eurocentric non UScentric map

africa is such a rich continent, but still being robbed

anyone got any news of world bank bonds boycott in ireland?

world helps africa
world helps africa

peters map- a truer representation of our home
peters map- a truer representation of our home

author by amandlapublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Leaflets for the african social forum were given out by Africans at the RAR campaign meeting on Saturday, and the ESF meeting too. The African Social Forum took our initative on the amnesty campaign after a meeting that looked at the experience of the Campaign Against the Racist Referendum. At this recall meeting, there were no clear decisions made about where to go next. We booked Liberty Hall three weeks ago.

3. We heard last Tuesday there was a hastily called meeting for Saturday, at the same time as the meeting for the European Social Forum. We went to it and will be supporting and building for the march at the end of September. But this meeting was called in a hurry and we have been working on Liberty Hall for weeks.

The 'broader' campaign looked at organising a march for the parents of irish children to get amnesty which is good. But there are also issues for amnesty for those without children too. What about the student Celina Codorean who got 450 points for her leaving certificate, but can't go to Trinity College? We need to campaign for her right to amnesty as well.

The speakers for Liberty Hall so far are

Gladstone Obganna (African Social Forum)
Celina and Antonia Codorean (Romanian Community)
Rory Hearn (Campaign Officer, Union of Students in Ireland)
Brendan Archibold (MANDATE trade union)

4. Yes- nice to think you find it hillarious that Africans can meet together
5. Yes

author by Badmanpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

And worthless one-word answers to the other 2. Brilliant. It is nice the way that you include a nasty little bit of race-bating in there too. I'm sure you know that the hilarity was caused by the particularly ham-fisted attempt of the SWP to set up yet another front, rather than any comment on Africans meeting together.

Based upon the answers that have been posted here, I'd say that the evidence for this being a wholly controlled undemocratic front for the SWP is overwhelming. It has no intention of achieving anything and it's aims are a joke, all it wants to do is recruit.

boycott, boycott, boycott.

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

perhaps indymedia people can also talk about communication techniques and media activism at this event
im presuming there will be time and space given for open free flowing discussion after speakers

amandla what are your views on the LIVE FEED system we are setting up with london and seattle for the ESF (official or unofficial-to be confirmed?)

Related Link:
author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors


id encourage you, all people with issues SWP, IAWM..... issues to come along and voice those concerns in this african social forum.

let the irish african community make up its own mind
by boycotting they might not become informed about your ideas, (im presuming you believe your right and your ideas are fantastic, if thats the case come and test them) its more productive than this

anonymity of posters takes away from the quality of debate, sometimes its necessary, here its not
so turn up, speak your views and lets please have some REAL DIALOGUE

if we cant get over this little hump, how do you expect to be successfull in changing the world-

im looking foreward to seeing how this develops
these open systems are funny things
such is life

author by Badmanpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:38author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Fool me once..... shame Fool me...- I won't be fooled again!!

What he meant to say was "fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me". I have been to enough SWP front meetings to know that they are not worth bothering with. If you think that you can achieve something at them, more power to you, I wish you luck.

However, my prediction for the content of this meeting is that it will start with long and very general political speeches which go over the basic needs for an amnesty campaign in great detail. These points will be echoed from the floor by gushingly enthusiastic young SWP members. This will take up 75% of the time of the meeting. The remainder will basically be made up of the SWP announcing what the plans that they have already decided are and an attempt to get the people present to put up posters for them and hand out leaflets. If anybody tries to inject a little bit of democracy into the process and have some positive input, there won't be enough time to consider it, or it will be agreed and never carried out, or a long line of SWP members will stand up to denounce it in turn, depending on which tactic is most appropriate.

If you doubt me, I encourage you to take part in a little experiment. Try to have some input into the text on the leaflets that are produced - see how (im)possible this is.

author by segun - pan-africanistpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:44author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The one good thing about this baby organization is that it is already generating discussion,

albeit racist and eurocentric, to think that the Africans lacks original initaitive to determine their own self interest is the same racist and eurocentric view of the present capitalist west which has been internalized by part of the left.

As Africans our reality is western domination, oppression and explotation. Our labour created capital and our continued exploitation sustains it, so there is no other group of people that harbour so much hatred for the present capitalist system and are ready to destroy it at the earliest oppurtunity than the Africans who are at the bottom of western capitalist expolitation.

The ASF is an independent organization that is not surbodinate to any organized marxist party. It's present objective is to struggle for social Justice and equal rights for Africans in Ireland, and the frontline today is the gross abuse of africans by the denial of free movement. Europeans enslaved and colonized africa, it is a matter of justice that african should have free movement to live, work and settle in the west as a reparation for the sin of slavery, colonialism and the present neo-liberal IMF structural adjustment programme.

Please we need your support, not to be use as a pun to settle petty sectarian squabbles, all we want is freedom by any means necessary.

author by Badmanpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"to think that the Africans lacks original initaitive to determine their own self interest is the same racist and eurocentric view of the present capitalist west which has been internalized by part of the left."

I don't think that; I never wrote anything that could give you the impression that I do think that; and I resent your race-bating. It is pretty obviously a red-herring to try to avoid answering any of the valid questions. Nice dirty tactics, you wouldn't be in the SWP by any chance would you?

I also don't believe that there is no control exercised by the SWP over the ASF. What are the decision making structures and the democratic mechanisms independent of the SWP that allow this independence to have real meaning? If you provide some evidence, beyond repeated assertions, there might be some reason to believe you. If you just use low-down smears and unsupported assertions, I'll just dismiss you.

author by Trotwatchpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 19:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Pull the other leg. The ASF is a SWP Front pure and simple. No different than their myriad other fronts. Your attempt at race-baiting just doesnt work here. It wont work no matter how many different ids you post under.

author by dunkpublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 20:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

talking with luke today, just recieved this
i hope 1 minute can be given over to communication systems for changing the world and with that give a small indymedia worksop
email for more details

Why the government should grant an Amnesty for All Immigrants:

Amnesty for All Immigrants:
The recent referendum on citizenship has created distress in immigrant
communities at the negative attitudes directed toward them. Their fears
were confirmed when an RTE exit poll found that 36 percent of Yes
voters thought ‘the country is being exploited by immigrants’

It is now time to reverse this negative by recognising positive
contributions that immigrants have made to Irish society.

A tangible way to do this would be to provide an amnesty for

During the referendum debate, Justice Minister Michael McDowell said
that ‘When the citizenship Bill has been passed, we can address the
existing people in Ireland without feeling we are creating precedents’
(Irish Times 14th June 2004).

It is now time to act.

Why an Amnesty?

There are a number of reasons why an amnesty should be granted:
· 11,000 families applied for residency based on having an Irish born
child. Some withdrew applications for asylum on the basis that being a
parent of an Irish child would allow them to stay here.
During the citizenship referendum, Mr McDowell quoted the Chen case on
many occasions. He claimed that a ‘loophole’ has been created in Irish
law by the fact that Mrs Chen acquired the right to reside in the EU by
virtue of the fact that she had a child born in Belfast. Mrs Chen won
the right to reside in the EU because otherwise her child’s rights would
be deprived of any effectiveness.
However, are not the rights of 11,000 Irish children today being
rendered ineffective because their parents can be deported? Why should one
Irish citizen be forced into becoming a ward of the court, while other
has a right to enjoy access to their parent?

· Beyond these 11,000 families, there are many more immigrants who have
been in Ireland for a number of years and have found themselves in a
legal limbo. Many of these have made a major contribution to the Irish
economy – whether through working legally or illegally. However, their
illegal status has rendered them open to gross exploitation.

One of the major contributory factors for the Celtic Tiger was growth
in labour participation rates. – due to many women entering the labour
force and also the influx of immigrants. The number of women entering
the labour force has begun to taper off since 1999 – therefore immigrants
are likely a still more important role in the future.

According to the Irish Labour Market Review, the largest increase in
the medium term in the Irish economy will be in services, which the
labour force is set to by 18 percent. It is precisely in these areas, that
many immigrants currently find work.

They should therefore be granted an amnesty so that they can make a
full and open contribution to the Irish economy.

· Amnesties for immigrants have been introduced in a number of
industrialised economies.

- In 1992, Non- EU immigrants to Portugal who had lived there for six
months were granted an amnesty. It was deigned to benefit the tens of
thousands of African who had come from Portugal’s former colonies.
- Canada introduced an amnesty in 1973 with the approval of all parties
and 39,000 people benefited from it. Most recently, a new amnesty has
been announced to address the needs of the labour market. Undocumented
workers are being given temporary visa and are then eligible to apply
for permanent status after 2 years.
- In 1986, the US government offered and amnesty. It is again currently
offering an amnesty programme for the 8 to 11 million illegal
immigrants. It is granting 3-year work visas to previously undocumented

Amnesties have been offered for the simple reason they make
sense. They recognise the reality that many immigrants will stay here
permanently – despite the myth that they are only here as ‘guest workers.

· Irish people have benefited considerably from amnesty when they were
illegal immigrants. In the 1980s, Bruce Morrison sponsored a Bill for
special visas to be issued to Irish citizens. Almost 50,000 Irish – many
of whom were illegal immigrants- took advantage of the Bill. It was the
official policy of the Irish government to lobby for Irish illegal
immigrants and to seek to have their situation regularised.

Natural justice implies the same situation should pertain here.

The Human Rights Commission and the Irish Bishops conference have
already called openly for an amnesty. It is now vital that other
organisations in Irish society come forward and support this call.

The African Social Forum would like to invite as many groups and
individuals as possible to attend a public launch meeting for our campaign
for Amnesty For All.

Speakers include Celina and Antonia (Romanian Immigrants), Rory Hearn
(USI) Brendan Archbold (MANDATE), Gladstone Ogbonna (ASF)

It will take place on…Saturday 18th September, 2:00pm at Liberty Hall,
Eden Quay, Dublin

author by bored with trotspublication date Mon Sep 13, 2004 20:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Perhaps Segun and Amandla would like to explain why the SWP expelled Rosanna Flynn of Residents Against Racism and accused her of being a Police Spy a number of years ago.

Does the SWP and ASF still think Rosanna Flynn is a Police Spy?

author by Al Franklin - Liars Anonpublication date Tue Sep 14, 2004 02:11author address Manhattanauthor phone Report this post to the editors

Re bored with Trot;No, she was not expelled for being a police spy, she was never accused of being one. She did however pass on some information to the cops about a comrade that was at the time in some trouble with them for political activities.
I have never heard her deny this. She has never attempted to justify it, the best interpretation could be she was foolish about the whole incident.Or that she simply did not like the person involved. In either case it is a pretty serious incident. She could have appealed the expulsion or argued it at conference;she did neither.
In any case she has since gone on to do excellent work in RAR and seems happier there than the SWP.
You are a liar, or misinformed. Go rant away .On second thoughts,yes you are just a liar.

author by dunk - imc, dgn, dub social forum working crew (in little way)publication date Tue Sep 14, 2004 14:07author email fuspey at yahoo dot co dot ukauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

between attempting to print stuff, meet people, bumping into others, communication stuff, bumping into more people, learning furhter of the dynamics, and then trying to communicate this to the wider community.
heres an audio piece from last nights
discussion on::

chomsky and new media discussion, dublin pub
upcoming social fora, ESF, ISF, ASF in ireland (afrcian social forum)- ESF live feed project- london, seattle, dublin
amnesty campaign to combat racist irish policies

a SWP (socialist workers party) open discussion in dublin pub. indymedia, dublin social forum working group, dublin grassroots network people went to document talk, inform people of ISF, which the talk organisers did not mention, demonstrate new ways of communicating, ie indymedia etc, further attempt end the "rift" between differnet sides of irish political activists

attempt to learn more about the newly formed "ASF in ireland". there is a lot of heated debate about the political dynamics of the social fora in europe and ireland.
as it stands irish social forum 2 is happening Fri 8th Oct to Sun 10th
european social forum is on Fri 15th Oct to Sun 17th.
imc crews are trying to set up "live feeds". at present imc-london, seattle, dublin are working on project together. this might happen as part of main ESF, but probably outside in the "alternative open ESF" which has been created by and supported by imc-uk, london social forum, wombles.....due to views that the official ESF is breaking from the principles of the world charter of principles, set up in porto alegre in 2001

the "campaign for amnesty for all" is an initiave that is getting its launch at the "african social forum in ireland" this weekend. this campaign has been started as a result of the recent referendum on citizenship which was voted in by the irish people, for many it was called the "racist referendum". despite lukes views that irish people are not racist there is definately a growing level of racism in irish society.

in the past we were the ones fleeing from the country, now the tables have turned and people are coming here.
you would have thought that a few hundred years of "difficult times" would have thaught us a thing or 2......
anyway we battle on with our new friends and neighbours, catholic, prodestant, atheist, buddhist, muslim, black, white, brown -all irish (untill that referendum popped up)

for more info see
post re "chomsky talk" and the following online debate, you get a feeling of the tensions- this article was printed and brought down to the meeting, we arrived late and informed people about the document, it was looked at by some people

"So What are You Going to this Autumn? ESF or ISF?"
present front feature on imc-ireland

ESF live feed to dublin a week after ISF

Amnesty For All
by Unity - African Social Forum

Racist Irish pass Racist Referendum

social fora
social fora

local afro net and call shop
local afro net and call shop

Related Link:
author by Shock Revelationpublication date Wed Sep 15, 2004 20:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Richard Boyd Barrett. It's now been officially announced, Boyd Barrett will be speaking in the plenary session "Challenging US Imperialism". He is the only Irish speaker.

The email from the ESF office lists him as being proposed by "Ireland", which presumably means that meeting the SWP put together a while ago. Congratulations to Richard and to anyone who had his name in the SWP-member-to-speak-at-ESF sweepstakes.

author by ....publication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 00:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Gerry Adams. Gerry Adams will be speaking in a plenary session. He has one of the UK slots.

author by dunkpublication date Thu Sep 23, 2004 01:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

saw my first live webcast today
The Search for Simplicity in the Universe

saw first archived one last night
nelson mandela

and just watched fritjof capra talk there, great stuff

in time it will be happening whereby most world social forum/ esf/ continental sf will be braodcast via the webstream for those unable to get there
also due to their choatic nature, lots of stuff on at same time, a good archive system will allow for people to view the worshops etc after event

im still plugging for the webstream feed for ESF (oficial or alt) some reckon it wont work, i believe we should try and test and from that make changes so it works in future
at least a 2 way system of webcam/ vid recorder will allow for us to interact

quantum physicist come eco dude- author :tao of physics
quantum physicist come eco dude- author :tao of physics

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