Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Commons reading list

On Sun, Jun 10, 2012 at 8:52 PM, Mark Barrett <marknbarrett@googlemail.com> wrote:

In London we are presently developing a new series of assemblies on localism, community and the commons. We are developing an English language reading list and links for the commons theme, we have so far the following, please could you/others add any we should include for people new to the whole concept ?

Either on this list or in comments at http://www.peoplesassemblies.org/2012/06/commons-links-resources/ where the same links are also posted

Thanks !


Reading Materials on the Commons selected by OWS’ Making Worlds

Podcast recommended by Darren from PAN
David Bollier:  Property & Commons, and The Gift Economy

School of Commoning 'Knowledge Garden' list of links http://www.schoolofcommoning.com/content/community-knowledge-garden

Essential commons resources for Occupiers (source George Por) 

http://thefutureofoccupy.org/2012/04/09/social-charters-a-comprehensive-program-for-reclaiming-sovereignty-over-our-natural-and-social-commons-resources/">Social Charters: A comprehensive program for (re)claiming sovereignty over our natural and social commons resources

Sage Advice for Occupy? from Nobel winner Elinor Ostrom

A Commons-inspired “Occupy theory” of collective action

Occupy + Commons: The Beginnings of a Beautiful Relationship

12 Reasons You’ll Be Hearing More About the Commons in 201

Convergence for a Commons-Based Economy</a> – Quilligan’s closing remarks of his 12-day seminar series
Secondary List (also from George P)

First, Occupy the Market State: Second, Claim Sovereignty: Third, Practice Subsidiarity

‘Occupy’ as a business model: The emerging open-source civilisati

Occupying the Commons – a Commonsense.it Project, an interview with Saki Bailey

Campaign Brief: Caring for the Commons

Surveying Commons Activism on the International Stage

The nascent story of the Escuela de los Commons

Reading Materials on the Commons selected by OWS’ Making Worlds
Thank you for this. Gathering all this reading material in one place is very helpful. It represents a huge resource, one that can seem quite overwhelming to someone coming new to the concept of the commons as many of us are. However this does not need to be seen as a prerequisite to understanding the commons.

 I have been puzzling about how we can discuss the commons in our workshops when for many of us it is a totally new concept, as though we have to study it before we can talk about it. I would like to make a plea for also consulting our inward feelings to enrich our understanding of the Commons. I am talking about something like a universal memory born with us that recognises that we have a right to preserve and protect those elements which support our life and well being.  Something in us knows that we should be in charge of caring for our planet in a way that preserves it for our children and children's children.

Back in the 17th century the Diggers were one of the first truly egalitarian political movements  and the first to argue for full equality of men and women. They did not have access to the wealth of literature that we have but they asserted: “The World was made a common treasury for all!”. And of course the roots go back even further.

Let's use all this material by all means, but not to let it become too intellectual or academic an excercise. Let's remember it's roots in the earth and in ourselves which bind us to each other and the world  and which we can consult directly by looking within ourselves and accessing our own aspirations and intentions.

best love, Anna

Sunday, 3 June 2012

SYRIZA leader's second letter to Barroso et al.

Friday, May 11, 2012


Letter of the president of the Parliamentary Team of SYRIZA – EKM to EU Commission President Jose Barroso, the President of the European Council H. Van Rompuy, and the President of the European Parliament ╬ťartin Sultz; attn the President of the ECB Mario Draghi and Eurogroup President Jean Claude Juncker

Athens Thursday May 10, 2012

Dear Mr. President

I am sending you this letter after returning the exploratory mandate with which the President of the Hellenic Republic entrusted me, so that I could determine the possibility of the creation of a government that would enjoy the parliament’s confidence, according to our Constitution. This letter is a continuation of the previous one I had sent you on February 21.

The vote of the the Greek people on Sunday May 6th, delegitimizes politically the Memorandum of Understanding / Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policy which was signed by the previous government under Mr. Papademos and the leaders of the two parties which had guaranteed the parliamentary majority of that government. Both these parties recorded a loss if about 3,5 million votes, receiving a combined 33,5% of total votes.

We would ask you to note that, before this, the Memorandum of Understanding / MEFP had been already delegitimized as regards to its economic efficiency.

But it isn’t just that the MoU/MEFP failed in achieving its own stated goals. It is also that it has failed to confront the structural imbalances of the Greek economy. SYRIZA has been pointing out all these past years the endogenous weaknesses of the economy. All governments, in close collaboration with the EU, ignored our proposals for concrete reforms.

Please note also, that because of the policies of the MoU/MEFP, Greece is the only European country ever in peacetime to be suffering in 2012, its fifth consecutive year of deep recession. Furthermore, the bond exchange program (PSI) has failed to secure in a reliable way the long-term viability of the public debt, which is increasing as a percentage of Greek GDP. Austerity cannot in any way be a therapy during a recession. The immediate, socially just, reversal of the declining trend of our economy is therefore imperative.

We must urgently secure economic and social stability in our country. For this reason, we have a duty to undertake every possible political initiative in order to reverse austerity and recession. Because, beyond the lack of democratic legitimization, a continued implementation of the program of internal devaluation leads the economy towards a catastrophe, without producing the prerequisites for recovery. Internal devaluation tends to lead to a humanitarian crisis.

We therefore have a duty to re-examine the whole framework of existing strategy, given that it not only threatens social cohesion and stability in Greece, but also is a source of instability for the EU itself and for the Eurozone.

The common future of European peoples is under the threat of these disastrous choices. It is our deep conviction that the problem of this crisis is European and that therefore it is at a European level that a solution must be found…


Alexis Tsipras

President of the SYRIZA Parliamentary Group

Vice-chairman of the Party of the European Left

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Events on the European Charter of the Commons

What are the Commons?
There is an urgent need to recognise that the essential elements for health and well being - water, food, land, education, health care, technology, internet, seeds, etc, - should be protected above all else for the good of all. At present these elements are being systematically sold into private ownership, losing the possibility of democratic control, rather than being valued as the Commons, each individual’s birthright to enjoy. A growing worldwide movement is taking shape to reclaim the Commons, for this and future generations, with people acting as stewards or trustees rather than owners.

When and Where?
Mytholmroyd (near Hebden Bridge) - Fri/29th June 7 - 9pm
Church of the Good Shepherd, New Road, Mytholmroyd, HX7 5EA

Leeds - Sat/30th June 10 - 4pm
Swarthmore Education Centre, 2-7 Woodhouse Square, Leeds, LS3 1AD

Manchester - Sun/1st July 10 - 4pm
Merci Centre, Bridge 5 Mill, 22a Beswick Street, Ancoats, Mcr., M4 7HR