Anarchist Decleration on the WSF Meeting
in Porto AlegreAt the same time as the worlds elite were meeting in New York at the
World Economic Forum a much larger counter conference took place in
Porto Alegre, Brazil. This World Social Forum attracted around 60, 000
people including many of those active in the movement around globalisation.
Brazilian anarchists organised an anarchist summit in Porto Alegre at
the same time as the WSF. They felt this was necessary because the WSF
is dominated by the moderate level of the globalisation movement who
favour moderate reforms rather then the abolition of capitalism. They
don't want to challenge the divisions into leaders and led, indeed the
WSF summit even had a special areas for VIP's.
Below are extracts from the final declaration of the 'Anarchist Days at Porto Alegre, 2002'.
For years the model known as neo-liberalism has pitilessly ignored the interests of our people. It is a model which is part of a system of domination which continually generates more misery in order to support a privileged minority. In various parts of the world there are people who are engaged in struggle. In the USA and Europe, thousands are taking to the streets in oppostion to neoliberalism and globalization, as in the cases of the striking episodes of militancy in Seattle, Quebec, Davos, Gothenburg and Genoa. At the same time, in Latin America, despite different socio-economic conditions, the people of Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Argentina have almost simultaneously been in struggle, often caused by their desperation to break out of the cycle of poverty and brutal injustice which imprisons them. This stage of capitalism leaves behind the never generous formula of the Welfare State. This produces change on various levels. Certain regulations have fallen by the wayside, while much of what was won in the past through struggle has been lost over a short time. ?
The uselessness of the mechanisms of bourgeois democracy has been discovered by the people. These places of illusion, established by the system so that the people would work within them, are now seen for what they really are - a means of reproduction, of manipulation and of control of the populace?.
The legal systems has participated in the orgy of corruption. Everything which comes from power, even outright theft, has been legitimized and gone practically unpunished. The people have taken to the streets with one certainty - only direct action can lead to something. There have been eruptions of picket-lines, street blockades and battles, raids on supermarkets, burnings of government institutions, banks and other transnational offices. ?
The fight of the Argentinian people provides a good lesson for our times - on the one hand, it teaches us what neo-liberalism is like in its advanced stage while on the other, it provides all those who are willing to struggle with the possibility to continue that struggle into a new century. The World Social Forum is the product of a wide expression of political, social and institutional forces from all over the world, which is supported by a cross class alliance which even includes those known as "progressive" capitalist entrepreneurs. This specific convergence of forces meets, not by chance, in a city and state in Brazil with a tradition of government by the Workers' Party?. What better propaganda for this "ability" than a form of capitalism organized on a local level with a social-democratic programme in a poor, peripheral, Latin American country? ?.
From this is emerging a series of new international relations to form a Front which wants to impose a new project - neo-reformism - which promotes itself on the back of Third World misery and legitimate popular anger and resistance.
These Anarchist Days have served to mark a watershed between social democracy and its plan for the management of capitalism and libertarian socialism, which believes and fights on a day-to-day basis to strengthen the conditions for a social revolution and the establishment of a society without exploiters or exploited. In the various contributions of these past few days, we have seen the necessity for an ideological current of social intervention which argues for a transformation of society. In order for this to be coherent, we need to be organized.
Enough with the bankruptcy of the methods of the traditional left in its various forms! Anarchism urgently needs to develop adequate new methods of action which are soundly rooted in reality and which really allow the ideas of participation, self-management, direct action and solidarity to function. ? FOR SOCIALISM! FOR LIBERTY!
[The statement was signed by 27 Brazilian groups as well as groups from most other Southern American countries and anarchist groups from the USA, France, Canada, Spain and Switzerland)