[Hpn] Fwd: (ftaa-l) Quebec 2001: A Carnival Against Capitalism

Graeme Bacque graeme2@funcow.com
Fri, 01 Sep 2000 03:12:29 -0400

------------forwarded message------------
Date: Fri, 1 Sep 2000 02:58:58 -0400 (EDT)
From: "la C.L.A.C." <clac@tao.ca>
To: ftaa-l@lists.tao.ca
Subject: (ftaa-l) Quebec 2001: A Carnival Against Capitalism

[September 1, 2001]

Resisting capitalist globalization ...
Mobilizing for Quebec City ...
Creating radical alternatives ...

Next April 20-22, 2001, Quebec City has the dubious honor of hosting the
Summit of the Americas, which brings together the 34 heads of state of
North, South and Central America, as well as the Caribbean (except Cuba).
Besides the usual scare-mongering about security and terrorism, and empty
rhetoric about democracy and human rights, the stated purpose of the
Summit will be to put the final touches on the Free Trade Area of the
Americas (FTAA) agreement. The Summit of the Americas meeting will be
largest police and security operation in Canadian history, all while the
34 leaders and an entourage of big business elites, technocrats and
corporate media enjoy their cocktail parties, gala dinners and public
relations spectacles.

The FTAA extends the NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) to the
entire hemisphere, and is to be implemented by no later than 2005. The
FTAA is also an extension of the reach of capitalist globalization, aiming
to submit health care, education, as well as environmental and labor
standards to the so-called logic of the free-market. Negotiated behind
closed doors, and imposed unilaterally, the FTAA process is yet another
example of the kind of economic violence that aims to suppress the gains
of popular struggles of the past, and reinforce the power of cash and cops
over our lives.

The demonstrations against the WTO in Seattle announced to the world the
existence of an anti-capitalist resistance movement in Canada and the
United States. The same spirit prevailed last April in Washington during
the IMF and World Bank meetings, and in Windsor last June during the
general assembly of the Organization of American States (which initiated
the FTAA process). On each occasion, thousands took to the streets to
refuse the free market fundamentalism of governments and business. These
demonstrations did not emerge from no where, but were the result of many
years of collective struggles against colonialism, poverty, police
brutality and injustices of all kinds.

Next April in Quebec City, the Anti-Capitalist Convergence (La Convergence
des luttes anti-capitalistes, or CLAC, in French) will participate in a
large-scale grassroots mobilization against the FTAA. The CLAC, which is
based in Montreal, is organizing a Carnival Against Capitalism (which will
include teach-ins, conferences, workshops, concerts, cabarets, street
theatre, direct actions, protests and more) as well as helping to convene
a North American conference in conjunction with Peoples' Global Action
against "Free" Trade (PGA). We are hoping to facilitate a convergence in
Quebec City of a vast array of people who aim to create a world free of

The CLAC believes it is possible to radically and creatively oppose
imperialism and the capitalist system while at the same time maintaining
the spirit of openness that is necessary to develop a diverse and
pluralistic resistance movement. The mobilization against the Summit of
the Americas is being organized within the framework of a long-term
struggle, in the North and South, against capitalist globalization. For
its part, the CLAC is committed to participating in the globalization of
genuine solidarity between peoples, with the goal of collectively
resisting the same root causes of exploitation.


No matter where you live, there are several ways to get involved with the
CLAC as we struggle against the FTAA and mobilize against the Summit of
the Americas:

* If you want more information about the CLAC, the FTAA or the Summit of
the Americas, get in touch. We can provide you with detailed information.
As well, don't hesitate to pass on information about your local struggles,
and your perspectives on the FTAA.

* If you want to support the actions and/or principles of the CLAC while
mobilizing against the FTAA, get in touch with us as well. We are hoping
to help contribute to a worldwide anti-capitalist resistance that is
creative, effective and as large as possible. Perhaps we can coordinate
actions against the FTAA and the Summit of the Americas throughout the

* If you want to organize an information session on the FTAA or the CLAC,
send us your requests. We can help prepare workshops, discussions and

* If you live in Quebec, Ontario, the Maritimes or the northeastern United
States, members of the CLAC can visit to help with your local mobilization
and awareness raising efforts. The CLAC is currently planning organizing
visits to these areas, in conjunction with local grassroots groups.

* If you live in Montreal, or you're planning on visiting sometime this
fall, the CLAC organizes regular general assemblies which are open to the
public (especially people who are in accord with the CLAC basis of unity).
The assemblies (until December) will be on September 6, September 26,
October 17, November 1, November 21 and December 13. All the assemblies
take place at L'X (182, Ste-Catherine East, metro Berri-UQAM) at 7pm. Each
assembly is preceded at 6pm by an informational session for people who are
new to the CLAC.

However you want to be involved, do get in touch. You can contact the CLAC
by e-mail (clac@tao.ca), by phone (514-526-8946 - temporary number) or by
post (La CLAC, 2035 St-Laurent Boulevard, 2nd floor, Montreal (Quebec)


Basis of Unity (translation from the French)

1. The Anti-Capitalist Convergence (CLAC in French) is opposed to
capitalism. We fundamentally reject a social and economic system based on
the private ownership of the means of production and exchange. We reject a
system driven by an exploitative logic that sees human beings as human
capital, ecosystems as natural resources, and culture as simply a
commodity. We reject the idea that the world is only valuable in terms of
profit, competition and efficiency.

2. The CLAC also rejects the ideology of neo-liberalism, whereby
corporations and investors are exempt from all political and social
measures that interfere with their so-called "success".

3. The CLAC is anti-imperialist, opposed to patriarchy, and denounces all
forms of exploitation and oppression. We assert a worldview based on the
respect of our differences and the autonomy of groups, individuals and
peoples. Our objective is to globalize our networks of resistance to
corporate rule.

4. Respecting a diversity of tactics, the CLAC supports the use of a
variety of creative initiatives, ranging between public education
campaigns to direct action.

5. The CLAC is autonomous, decentralized and non-hierarchical. We
encourage the involvement of anyone who accepts this statement of
principles. We also encourage the participation of all individuals in
working groups, in accord with their respective political affiliations.

6. With regards to the Summit of the Americas (April 2001) and the
negotiations of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), the CLAC
adopts a confrontational attitude and rejects reformist alternatives such
as lobbying which cannot have a major impact on anti-democratic processes.
We intend to shut down the Summit of the Americas and to turn the FTAA
negotiations into a non-event.

   La Convergence des luttes anti-capitalistes (CLAC)
           The Anti-Capitalist Convergence
    La Convergencia de las luchas anti-capitalistas
      A Convergencia das lutas anti-capitalistas
            <clac@tao.ca> -- 514-526-8946

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resisting the FTAA and capitalist globalization
mobilizing for Quebec City, April 2001
creating alternatives
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