Thursday, August 28, 2008

The following is from the Common Cause/Linchpin organization in Toronto. Some of it, the fifth issue of their magazine, has already been reported here, but the results of their recent conference have not.'s the magazine in their own words rather than mine, and the tidbits of the conference as well. Enjoy. As I've said repeatedly here, practical organized anarchism is growing while the less savoury aspects are declining. If anarchism doesn't take the concerns of ordinary people seriously- as the Common Cause people DO- then it is not anarchism, merely some sort of fashion trend, and a declining one at that. But now for the more serious folks and their works...
1.. Linchpin #5 OUT NOW!
This is the August / Sept 2008 issue of the Linchpin paper, published by Common Cause. We publish articles written by our members as well as by others involved in action / movements. Please contact us if you would like to contribute or have any feedback.
We make copies of this paper available in the Ontario communities in which we have a presence, and are always looking to expand. If you'd like to get involved in helping in our distribution efforts, please contact us.
Please contact us if you would like to contribute or have any feedback at
Copies are available at a number of locations, including:
HAMILTON - The Skydragon Centre, 27 King William St.
OTTAWA - Exile Infoshop, 256 Bank St.;
Oneness Grassroots Promotions,430 Rideau St.
TORONTO - Toronto Women's Bookstore, 73 Harbord St.
PDF of Linchpin issue 5 to download -
In this issue;
Autoworkers – Nothing to Lose
According to the Canadian Auto Workers union (CAW), the Canadian auto industry including both assembly and parts has lost a total of nearly30,000 jobs since 2001. If autoworkers do not respond strongly, even radically, to this blatant attack on their livelihoods, it is likely that these trends will continue in both Canada and the USA, writes Mick S.
Residential School Apology: An Anarchist View
Residential schools were a project to spread capitalism. Residential schools were meant to turn Indigenous peoples into settlers and make them workers and peasants for the capitalist system. Harper will never apologize for the real goals of the residential schools, writes Rev.
It's the Stupid Economy
Hard as it is to ignore when people walk away from their homes en masse, cannot manage their debts en masse, cannot afford to heat their homes, or drive their cars en masse – and when whole economies contract around the cost of supplying the fuel necessary to bring the goods to market, it would seem inevitable that tough times are ahead,writes Big B.
Against the State and Capital on the High Seas
Thanks to the work of a rare breed of historians (see below) we now know that the pirates of the 17th and 18th centuries, rather than violent thieves, were in fact rebels against the oppression of the young modern state and of a still-emerging capitalism, writes MarleyB.
Practicing Anarchism
There is a widespread belief that anarchism means chaos and disorganization instead of its true meaning: direct democratic control over all aspects of society including the economy, social and economic equality and liberty. However, at least for one night in Hamilton,those 20 or so people who attended Kim Keyser's talk, "The Prefigurative Organization," got a glimpse of what anarchism really means, reports Marley B.
Hamilton's Anarchist Book Fair and Monthly Discussion Groups
Read a brief report on Common Cause Hamilton's successful Anarchist Book Fair held in June and join us for our monthly anarchist discussion groups.
Toronto Bad Books Club
If you are in the Toronto area, join Common Cause Toronto's book club held the first Saturday of every month.
Ottawa Anarchist Discussion Group and Fall Conference
Common Cause Ottawa is keeping busy re-starting Ottawa's long running monthly Anarchist Discussion Group and putting together the Organizing for Justice conference for late fall.
You can read all of the articles at
2. Report from the 2008 Ontario Conference of Common Cause.
On August 16 and 17, 2008 Common Cause, an Ontario Anarchist-Communist organization, held it's second annual Ontario-wide conference in Hamilton, Ontario. In attendance were members from Common Cause Branches in Hamilton, Ottawa, and Toronto as well as observers from the Four Star Anarchist Organization based in Chicago.
We started with reports from Ontario Officers and local Branches,which gave us a good overall view of the organization in our rookie year. We were generally pleased with the progress we have made as an organization since our founding Conference in 2007 though we recognize that we still have a long way to go before we represent a significant revolutionary organization. In 2007/ 2008 significant activities included organizing the 1st annual Hamilton Anarchist Bookfair, which was a smashing success;Publishing five issues of the free Linchpin Newspaper which currently has a print run of 1700 copies with many more downloaded off our popular website; Regular public anarchist discussion groups in Hamilton, Ottawa, and a book club in Toronto.
Much of the first day was spent working on proposals on our internal democratic structures, and in the end we passed significant amendments to our constitution. The second day was split between political discussions on subjects such as a proposed Equity Policy, Gender and Women's oppression, and Nationalism and anti-imperialism. In the end no papers were adopted. However, some of them were sent to working groups and an proposal was passed that we we hold a yearly day-school to work on policy development and building our member's skills.
We also discussed our activities and strategies in relation to the Labour movement; Indigenous struggles; The G8 summit in 2010; Our publications such as the Linchpin Newspaper; and working with other Anarchists and organizations on the Left.
We also held elections for our officer positions, which saw a significant rotation of officer positions with only the Ontario Secretary and Treasurer returning for a second term in 2009. At the end of the conference we felt that we had made real progress moving forward our democratic structures; discussions on political positions; and future activities.
We're going into our second year as a stronger maturing organization and will continue to work steadily towards building anarchist social revolution in Ontario and internationally. This conference made it clear that Common Cause is here to stay.
If you are interested in learning more or getting involved with Common Cause please contact us at:
Common Cause
P.O. Box 347,
Station E772 Dovercourt Rd.
Toronto, ON, Canada,
M6H 4E3

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