Organising Autonomously

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Organising Autonomously is an extraparliamentary group based in Lund, Sweden. We are active in questions concerning class struggle, workplace issues, care work, feminism, antiracism and antifascism and more. Our email adress is autonomorganisering@riseup.net and our PGP key is:

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PLATTFORM

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 We are a feminist, antiracist and revolutionary socialist organisation. That is, we are for the state- and classless society, for the transcendance of gender and ethnicity forms, states, nations and money.

2.0 STATE, NATION AND PARLIAMENTARISM

2.1 The state is always the state of the employing class. It’s basic function is to take the power from the many and put it in the hands of the few. Burgeoise democracy is created to make class society possible and to preserve the power of the upper class.

2.1.1 The police and military function as the last guarantee for the survival of the state and uses violence and other repression to fend off threats against state and capital.

2.2 The state is racist and sexist. At it’s core the state is disciplinary and produces divisions between people and create us as men, women, migrants and Swedes, this is done above all through it’s “soft” institutions such as schools or institutions of migration.

2.3 Parliamentarism functions through passivation and disciplining by giving a veneer of democracy and inhibits political will and action to choosing who will administer and maintain the capitalist state. We are opposed to the idea that parliamentary methods can be used in the service of the revolution as these are based on the rules set by the state and the bourgeoisie class.

2.4 No-one can be represented. We realize that all groups are heterogeneous and that they cannot be represented without someone’s voice being marginalized. Representation is a fundamental mechanism to move power to a few, a mechanism that not only exists in parliamentary elections but also in labor unions and similar.

2.5 We are anti-nationalists. Nationalism is in all its shapes a false community. To construct this national community means to always draw borders for it where those who are excluded are marginalized and persecuted.

2.5.1 Nationalism is always connected to racism and to regulation of gender and furthermore serves to hide and oppose the class conflict. We realize that the working class is heterogeneous and global and that we have a shared interest with it and not with the nation.

2.5.2 We are internationalists. We see ourselves as part of an international movement and want to work to link and develop struggles and movements across the world.

2.5.3 We believe in international solidarity. Our anti-nationalism does not mean that we do not stand in solidarity with the struggles of many national liberation movements for freedom and sovereignity. Places such as Palestine or Kashmir suffer from a political, cultural and economic oppression which must be lifted.

2.5.4 We are skeptical towards states as solutions in the anti-imperialist struggle. Our anti-nationalism means that we do not see states to be fruitful ways to achieve these goals even though we can see some improvements that can be made by achieving statehood. We see that corruption and repression have often followed after winning statehood. Rather than functioning as a step on the way toward socialism these states have held back the aspirations for freedom. We see that national liberation movements have used nationalism as a weapon against the colonial and occupying power but that they through these have had problems with essentialism and internal inequality.

2.6 War, capitalism, racism and sexism are always connected. War does affect capitalism itself but it often serves the purpose of maintaining it. Many of the wars of our day are imperialist and serve to secure the bourgeoisie class control over the world’s resources through the control of the rich states over the poor.

2.6.1 Today we are in a situation where imperialism has taken the shape of world police, where the maintenance of capitalist and liberal normalcy is the goal for military interventions. This means that powerful states, the UN and other organs for cooperation between states can work against fascist groups, violent militias and similar, groups which can also be our enemies. The common struggle against Daesh (“The Islamic State”) where Iran, Hezbollah, the US and the UN as well as Kurdish left groups fight Islamists is one such example. Even if this means that in practice we are on the same side it is important to note that we have a basic critique against states.

2.6.2 “The war on terror” is a defining moment of our time. It is an overall racist imperialist war over resources which is partly driven by and to a great degree is legitimized by and also creates racist ideologies, migration from the global south and fascist terror in the global north.

2.7 Just like wars borders serve the function of global capitalism. The border is a physical, legal and social phenomenon which creates hierarchies between people and states. Borders maintain the economic inequality between the global south and the global north through maintaining the division of the whole working class in global division of labor.

2.8 We are against all “workers states.” Socialism is the smashing of the divisions we have described here, it cannot include borders, states, nations or militaries. Socialism is only possible on a global scale. States such as the Soviet Union or China recreated power structures through mechanisms such as representation and the class structure of the state, we deny the idea that these are a step on the road to socialism.

3.0 CLASS, SOCIALISM, CLASS STRUGGLE

3.1 Capitalism is a system which destroys our planet, our lives, our future. Capitalism alienates us from ourselves and the world around us, it exploits our labor when we work and at the same time makes unemployment miserable. Capitalism damages our bodies when we work and it makes everything into commodities and tries to sell these.

3.2 Class society consists of two classes and middle strata. These are defined as those who must sell their work to survive and those who buy labor. “The middle class” is a liberal and badly defined term which cloaks the class relations. These two classes, the bourgeoisie and the working class, are two main poles in class society but it consists of many middle strata who move up and down between the classes.

3.2.1 Class struggle is something which is happening all the time because labor and capital are in a basic contradiction with one another. No matter a workers ideology this person can be part of material conflicts which form class struggle.

3.2.2 Class today is not the same thing as a hundred years ago. We have to understand the working class as heterogonous and changeable and put great emphasis to see the specific conditions of current class composition and thereby connected possibilities for struggle.

3.3 The crisis of capitalism causes common possibilities for struggle. The crisis creates similar conditions wherever it goes in as different places as Hong Kong, Quebec, Athens and Cairo.

3.3.1 The crisis is on its way. The Swedish society is more and more moving away from the welfare state which is the basis of the class peace that has shaped Sweden since the 30’s. We are today moving towards a situation similar to the more advanced capitalist nations. A few signs of this is the riots in the suburbs, the mass unemployment, the lack of lifelong loyalty to reformist mass organizations (such as the Social Democratic party or the main trade union confederation LO) and the ever lower faith in “democracy” and its institutions.

3.4 State ownership is not socialism. We are not of the belief that state ownership is the solution to our problems. Even though state ownership can have good effects and in some occasions be good in the short term we are not aiming for a large welfare state. When we fight against privatizations and cutbacks it is because in the concrete situations workers lose power over their labor, otherwise the form of ownership in capitalism does not concern us.

3.5 The main development in society is one which moves more towards uncertainty and precarity in the labor market. Even though there can be large differences among different precarious groups they have in common that they lose security in terms of income, workplace security and even in their whole lives and their futures.

4.0 GENDER, SEXUALITY AND ETHNICITY

4.1 We are feminists. Gender is a social and historical construction which in complex manners means the structural subordination of women and non-binary people.

4.1.1 We are materialists. It means that we do not see gender and ethnicity as only norms. Differences in for example salaries, housing and working conditions are not just effects of but create and recreate structural racism and sexism.

4.1.2 Class, gender and ethnicity are always expressed in and through each other. They can never be separated from each other but never be reduced to each other either.

4.1.3 We have a structural analysis of society. It means that we view sexism, racism, homophobia and transphobia as something all people take part in. It also means that we do not just see these things as destructive but also as productive, as something which creates us as subjects. We are constituted by the structures and our everyday practices are sometimes subversive and sometime maintain the systems we live in.

4.1.4 Gender and ethnicity are not just things we are but things we do. They are shifting and multifaceted structures which orders and gives meaning to these practices. There are for example many ways of doing masculinity and femininity and these are in constant motion.

4.2 All people are forced into narrow gender norms and punished if they are not complying with these. Through not fitting in or being subordinate to a binary gender order non-binary people, trans individuals and intersexuals are oppressed.

4.2.1 Our society is heteronormative and punish same-sex love. This is connected to the gender order. Today this gender order is in crisis, the obligatory heterosexuality with the nuclear family as main ideal is falling apart throughout the west. We see a positive development where the queer, the norm breaking is attacking the old patriarchal capitalist order. We work to support, politicize and develop this tendency.

4.3 We believe in the idea of transversal politics. All people’s ways of seeing and understanding the world is based on their position in a variety of social structures. All knowledge comes from a, by necessity, limited point of view, it is only in dialogue with each other we can move towards the objective.

4.4 Capitalism and patriarchy are connected to the division of labor where women have above all been in reproductive labor and men in productive. In Sweden this has overall meant that women work in the public sector and men in the private. Division of labor means that women’s labor is exploited to a greater degree and that their situation, workplace injuries, wages and similar is neglected by state, capital and unions.

4.5 The body is central to our feminism. Our bodies possibilities and limitations in forms of age, ability, “handicap” is directly linked with other power structures and we work to make visible and oppose these to create a movement and a group which is capable of including a wide variety of people.

5.0 STRATEGY, TACTICS, MEANS OF STRUGGLE

5.1 In the present situation the most important is to create self activity everywhere we can and develop the already existing struggles. We are constantly trying to encourage grassroots mobilizations and then radicalize the conflicts and movements which exist. What this means depends on the concrete situation. We want to see wage struggles become struggles over power over work. We want to see workplace struggles become struggles over the organization of the entirety of society. We want to see struggles against specific organizations or conditions develop into struggles against the system which creates these problems.

5.1.1 We use direct action. This gives us a possibility to avoid representation and change the world immediately.

5.1.2 We are a cadre organization. We strive to be an organization with active members. We demand more of each other than most other organizations since we believe a certain discipline is required to achieve the power we want to become.

5.1.3 Openness is a strength. We are trying to be as open as possible with our plans and our ideology.

5.2 Our activism shapes the movements of tomorrow and we strive to make a politics for the future. Future movements will be strengthened by the practices, structures and network which we develop. Our goal is to create and spread revolutionary practices and give to a sort of infrastructure which can be used when the conditions are different than today.

5.2.1 We want to see a development in the left from civil disobedience to more radical methods. The left as a whole has a great potential but it requires greater organization, structure and will than what exists today.

5.2.2 We see mass militancy as one of the more important means of struggle since they create possibilities of radicalization and resistance for a large amount of people. Mass militancy creates a common political experience and strengthens the development of collective consciousness’ and practices.

5.3 We work for a movement where there are sober and drug-free spaces to make the left a safe place and work against harmful tendencies.

5.4 We believe that antifascism is a struggle for the survival of socialist movements and not a goal in itself. We want to emphasize that since we define antifascism as struggle against fascist currents, tendencies and street movements what is part of antifascist struggle is very contextual. To fight the abortion resistance of fascist movements is just as much antifascism as physically denying their street presence. Which means of struggle which are the best vary depending on context.

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