Who wants to be a millionaire

La Rampart & Ex-Bowl Court newsletter 23rd September 2008


Big news this week is that there is a new social centre opening in Brixton/Camberwell so check them out if you are in the area. See their callout in our Events elsewhere section.

A different kind of news, a highly entertaining story of an activist ‘robin hood’ scamming banks of nearly half a million euros and giving it to activist groups, you can read about it here :

Things have started to pick up at the Rampart and we have some new faces involved (in case you got bored of the old ones), who we think you will get on with just fine. We still have our meetings every Monday evening at 7pm at Rampart and you can come along to propose an event or to get involved in the space.

Now swiftly on with the newsletter..


— Coming up at the Rampart —


-~ THURSDAY 25TH SEPT – 8pm ~-

Two or Three Things about Activism (73 min, 2008) is a counter-documentary based on a distinction once made by Godard between making a political film (a film about a political struggle) and making film politically. Making film politically means questioning the dominant forms of producing images and sounds and one’s own complicity in this system. While 13 protagonists, from anarchist groups and environmentalists to NGOS, discuss activism in Romania and its historical context, the voiceover reflects the motivations behind the video.

Two or Three Things about Activism begins with a richness of sound and image, but becomes increasingly bare and fragmented, preventing an easy identification. The form contributes to the goal: in a Romanian context in which activism is weak and made up of isolated groups, the video hopes to become a tool for self-reflection, asking activists to see their own position from the point of view of the others. It doesn’t represent Romanian activism, but tries to intervene in it from the inside, to provoke change.

“It was the beginning or middle of 2007. We traveled across Romania, to make a film about activism. Who is this we? The obvious beginning would be to confess our ideologies. But the obvious is always too simple. You wanted to make an objective document. My motivation was more subjective. It began from a failure. A five-year failure of activism. I wanted to believe the failure was not mine, but the failure of the context.” (voiceover)

Two or Three Things about Activism is part of Commonplaces of Transition, a collaborative video project between D Media (Romania), Ak-Kraak (Germany), Interspace (Bulgaria) and K:SAK (Moldova). The project has produced 8 videos on themes including the remapping of borders, the transformation of labour and the evolution of activism. [Joanne Richardson will present other videos that are part of the project on Sept 24 at Mute.] http://www.metamute.org/

Joanne Richardson is living and working in Cluj (Romania) as a theorist, artist and program director of D Media (www.dmedia.ro), a media art NGO. She is the editor of Subsol (subsol.c3.hu), a webzine on activist art and media theory, and of two books: Anarchitexts: Voices from the Global Digital Resistance (Autonomedia, NY, 2003) and Geert Lovink: Cultura Digitala (Idea Press, Romania, 2004). She has written essays on the radical left, the Situationists, experimental film, video activism, tactical media, net culture, free software, the myth of authorship and copyleft. Her videos reflect an ongoing interest in globalization, nationalism and postcommunism, and manifest a critical perspective toward the status of documents, history and memory.

-~ FRIDAY 26TH SEPT – 6pm ~-

Radical Theory Reading Group

Hello and welcome to new members.
For those of you who haven’t been to the group before, the format is that we all do the reading beforehand (well, most of us do!) and then discuss it at the meeting. Readings are always either available on the www or made available as downloads. Readings are chosen on an ad hoc basis and usually are suggestions for continuing themes that emerge from each month’s discussion. Anyone can propose a reading.

This month’s meeting is on Friday, September 26th, starting at 6pm in the library at rampART. We’ll be reading Mackenzie Wark’s ‘Hacker Manifesto’ (version 4), available here http://neme.org/main/291/hacker-manifesto (there is another site which is more printer friendly but currently seems to be inaccessible. Try a Google search but make sure you get version 4. Other versions are longer).

Look forward to seeing you all there.

-~ FRIDAY 26TH SEPT – 6pm ~-

Friday Juggling/Spinning sesssions:

If you want to learn to juggle or spin poi or firestaff; if you have some skills you’d like to share with others, or if you just want to do a bit of juggling or spinning in the evening in a friendly environment, come to Rampart on friday at 6pm.
I hope this will evolve into a regular sorta workshop/skillshare/practice session, so the time might change further on, but it’s friday for now. See you there :]

-~ SATURDAY 27TH SEPT – 8pm ~-

Free School fundraising party

After a very successful first London Freeschool week, 1st – 7th September at the rampART, we are planning another, even better weekend of non-hierarchical skillsharing, learning and practicing together with the emphasis on equality, respect and trust. Since the Freeschool is, as it implies, free, we need to raise some funds.

So we are organising a big benefit event on the 27th of september, from 8 pm to 2 am in the morning with live poetry and spoken word, featuring niall spooner, live music with No Mas Nada, 52 Commercial Road and Paul Hawkins and the Awkward Silencers, DJ sets by Fe_bac, Little Miss Moonshine, Startx and the Dissident Island radio crew, film screening, capoeira, juggling and clowning and many more treats, like splendid vegan food & drink…

-~ TUESDAY 30TH SEPT – 8pm ~-

State and Corporate Oppression of the Australian Aborigines

Film Screening and workshop with discussion

“THIS IS OUR COUNTRY TOO” A riceNpeas film
A powerful exposé of Australia’s hidden apartheid.

From the makers of With or Without Fidel, Blood Diamonds and Bang Bang In Da Manor comes a brave new documentary that delves beyond Australia’s reputation of sun, surf and sand to reveal a nation ruptured by a deep racial divide and contested history. Taking the controversial 2007 Northern Territory Intervention as its starting point, This is Our Country Too is a hard-hitting investigation into Australia’s woeful treatment of its indigenous peoples, and a rare depiction of their unrelenting struggle for justice, equality and self-determination.

In June 2007, the Australian government took the unprecedented step of suspending its Race Relations Act to introduce the Intervention – a series of draconian, federal-backed laws designed to control the flow of alcohol and pornography into ‘prescribed communities’ in the Northern Territory. It was a reactionary response to endemic alcoholism and supposedly endemic child abuse in these communities, though there is little data to support the latter accusation.

Featuring interviews with prominent Aboriginal leaders, Pat Turner, niece of ‘Australia’a Mandela,’ Charlie Perkins, Pat Dodson, spearhead of the reconciliation movement, actor/artist David Gulpilil and Jenny Macklin, Minister of Indigenous Affairs, This is Our Country Too puts the world’s focus on Australia’s indigenous people’s forgotten plight and advances the question: How will Australia reconcile with it’s indigenous people?

International Call for Action:
September 30 – Stop the N.T. Intervention
Call for Actions in Solidarity with Aboriginal Communities in the Northern Territory of Australia

There was an old man who walked off the station up at Wave Hill because he didn’t wanna get paid in vouchers or rations. We don’t wanna be paid in vouchers or rations anymore!
– Barbara Shaw

In June 2007 the Australian government began the intervention into Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. The Racial Discrimination Act 1975 was suspended to allow this legislation to be passed. Under the guise of “child protection”, the government compulsorily acquired five year leases on Aboriginal land permits. It put in place a welfare quarantine system whereby people living in “prescribed areas” – Aboriginal town camps and remote communities, whether elderly, students, single, or members of families – have half their welfare payments paid in the form of “store cards”. These are gift cards (aka ration cards) that can be spent at approved stores – namely corporate chain stores in Alice Springs, Katherine and Darwin, regardless of the distance of communities from these major centres, or the lack of transportation available to people from remote areas.

For more information:

-~ FRIDAY 3RD OCT – 8pm to 2am ~-

A BeneFIT for Freedom of Movement and against Repression!

On July 5th people demonstrated for freedom of movement and the right to protest at the home office buildings in Croydon. This party is a post event benefit for the demonstration and to support the people who were charged for protesting the Forward Intelligence Team (FIT) in the
run up to the demo.

No Justice, No Peace!

Friday 3 October 2008, Rampart Social Centre, London E1 2LA (near Whitechapel, off Commercial Rd) from 8pm – 2am
Reaggae, Roots and More




— Events elsewhere: ———


-~ WEDNESDAY 24TH SEPT – 7pm ~-

Commonplaces of Transition

Screening and talk by Joanne Richardson, D Media, Romania

Wed, 24 Sept, 7pm – 9pm
Mute, Main Hall, The Whitechapel Center, 85 Myrdle Street, London E1
Google Map http://linkme2.net/ev

Full details and downloads http://linkme2.net/ew

In Transit (30 min, 2008)
Precarious Lives (excerpt, 43 min, 2008)
Two or Three Things about Activism (excerpt, 73 min, 2008)

On the following night ‘Two or Three Things about Activism’ will be screened at RampArt, see https://therampart.wordpress.com/

Commonplaces of Transition is a collaborative project between D Media (Romania), Ak-Kraak (Germany), Interspace (Bulgaria) and K:SAK (Moldova) that has produced 8 videos about the remapping of borders, the transformation of labour and the evolution of activism. Joanne Richardson will screen In Transit (30 min, 2008), Precarious Lives (excerpt, 43 min, 2008) and Two or Three Things about Activism (excerpt, 73 min, 2008), and discuss the connection of the project to video activism and counter-documentary.

‘In Transit’ is a diary of a journey through space and time, composed of subjective impressions of the present, childhood memories and recycled fragments of the past. While traveling across Romania in the year of its EU accession, the monologue reflects on the meaning of transition, the re-writing of history and the relation between images and memory. Multiple layers of signification emerge in references other films by Guy Debord, Chris Marker and Peter Forgacs.

Joanne Richardson is living and working in Cluj as a theorist, artist and program director of D Media ( http://www.dmedia.ro ). She is the editor of a webzine ( http://subsol.c3.hu ) and two books on digital culture, has written essays on the radical left, video activism, tactical media, copyleft and has made videos on issues ranging from globalization, to nationalism and postcommunism.

This screening has been facilitated by More is More – independent media distribution and film screening network http://moreismore.net

-~ THURSDAY 25TH SEPT – 12.30pm ~-

Solidarity picket for Latin American cleaners at the National Physical Laboratory, employed by Amey Business Services.

Date: Thursday 25 September
Meeting point: 12.30 Nelsons Column for briefing and then move on to Nanofinance 2008 event (see below) where we expect NPL to have a presence.
Bring: whistles, placards, banners, megaphone. I will bring leaflets.

Would be good if people can confirm so we know who to look out for and in the event of any last minute changes of plan. Email or text me on 07818 667 192.

We aim to make it short and sharp so people can come down on their lunch breaks.

The action has the support fo various Latin American groups.

Jake Lagnado [jacobin88@hotmail.com]

Latin American cleaners at NPL suffered an immigration raid approx 1 year ago resulting in deportations. This was just as they were organizing into a union, and happened when Amey took over the cleaning contract. Since then numbers employed have fallen from 35 to 11. Of those,  5 have since been suspended for almost two months for distributing a leaflet mentioning the manager responsible for imposing contractual changes without consultation. On Tuesday we will know the company’s decision following the disciplinary process against them. This action is because the suspended activists expect some form of ‘punishment’ i.e. formal warnings or dismissals.

The leaflet on the day will give more details.

-~ THURSDAY 25TH SEPT – 7pm ~-







-~ FRIDAY 26TH SEPT – 6pm ~-

Critical Mass bike ride

The London Mass meets at 6.00pm on the last Friday of every month on the South Bank under Waterloo Bridge, by the National Film Theatre.


-~ SUNDAY 28TH SEPT – 1pm ~-

“Hackney Isn’t Crap” LCAP Gentrification Tour

Gentrification in Dalston and Hackney Central Walk


Jules Pipe (Mayor of Hackney) said that if you opposed developments like the Dalston Square then you were part of a ‘keep hackney crap mentality’. But Hackney isn’t crap. Not even close. It doesn’t need property speculators to ‘make it a nice place’. Don’t take our word for it – come and see for yourself.

On Sunday 28 September we will host a walking tour of Gentrification in Dalston and Hackney Central, culminating in a picnic in London Fields.

While Hackney Council celebrate the Olympics with the ‘Carnival for the Cultural Olympiad’ we will have a look at the gentrification of Hackney that the Olympics will cause. From Dalston Lane to Broadway market we will take people on a guided tour of dispossession and hear from shopkeepers, residents and the homeless who are fighting to keep their area a place they can live and work in and struggling to survive in this Olympic borough.

On Sunday the 28th of September meet at 1pm at the Dalston Peace Mural on Dalston Lane, (just after corner with Kingsland rd, near Dalston Kingsland Station)

-~ SUNDAY 28TH SEPT – 2pm ~-

Sunday Cinema Cafe at LARC

2 films each day, plus DJs, cake & plenty of tea…

Sunday September 28th, 2-6pm:
‘San Francisco’ (1968) & ‘If’ (1968)

Sunday October 12th, 2-6pm:
‘It’s Not Just You, Murray!'(1964) & ‘Medium Cool’ (1968)

November 9th Remembrance Day Anti-War Special, 2-6pm:
‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ (1930) & ‘The War Game’ (1965)

Organised by the Whitechapel Anarchist Group

-~ WEDNESDAY 15TH OCT – 10am to 6pm ~-


The difference and repetition of James Brown

A Symposium
in the Centre for Cultural Studies Research
University of East London
Docklands Campus

October 15th 2008
10:00am – 1pm Room EBG.06
3pm – 6pm Room WB1.01

Dhanveer Singh Brar Goldsmiths College

Anne Danielsen author of ‘Presence and Pleasure: the Funk Grooves of James Brown and Parliament’

Jeremy Gilbert  co-author ‘Discographies: Dance Music Culture and the Politics of Sound’

Steve Goodman (Kode9) University of East London

Julian Henriques Goldsmiths College

Tim Lawrence author of ‘Loves Saves the Day: A History of American Dance Music Culture, 1970-79’

John Scannell Macquarie University

Ashwani Sharma University of East London

Simon Zagorski-Thomas London College of Music

Attendance is free of charge
To register email J.Gilbert@uel.ac.uk


— Other stuff —————


Energy Cafe at Gunpowder Park

The Field Station Energy Café is a project by Pilot Publishing (Amy Plant and Ella Gibbs) which will reinvigorate Gunpowder Park with a feeling of the original ‘commons’ where land was used as a resource for all.

The construction of Energy Café will turn normal planning procedures on its head. The process will be developed organically, out of necessity, through people’s involvement.

Pilot Publishing will work with ecologists, permaculture specialists and the local community to harvest wild food from Gunpowder Park and source farm or home-grown produce within a five mile radius. They will experiment with sustainable ways of cooking and make an off grid kitchen outside the field station and through these activities, develop a greater understanding of the landscape by those who use it.

Over the course of a year Pilot Publishing will host harvesting walks and events, permaculture workshops and research into renewable energy to create a sustainable social facility that can continue to provide Park visitors with a common space to meet, share ideas and exchange local knowledge.

Watch this space!

— Ends ———


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