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download (2)TEACHING FOR DEMOCRACY AND JUSTICE IN AN AGE OF INEQUALITY

THE ROUGE FORUM CONFERENCE – 2016

May 27-28, 2016

St Mary’s University

14500 Bannister Road SE Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2X 1Z4

 

Website: https://rougeforumconference.wordpress.com/2012/06/11/hello-world/

Location: St. Mary’s University [map]

 

Keynote: Adam Renner Education for Social Justice Memorial Lecture
E. Wayne Ross, University of British Columbia

 

Conference Program: https://rougeforumconference.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/rouge-forum-program.pdf

Registration: https://rougeforumconference.wordpress.com/rf-2014-registration/

Flyer for the Conference: https://rougeforumconference.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/rouge-forum-program.pdf

 

The Rouge Forum is a group of educators, students, and parents seeking a democratic society. We are concerned about questions like these: How can we teach against racism, national chauvinism and sexism in an increasingly authoritarian and undemocratic society? How can we gain enough real power to keep our ideals and still teach–or learn? Whose interests shall school serve in a society that is ever more unequal? We are both research and action oriented. We want to learn about equality, democracy and social justice as we simultaneously struggle to bring into practice our present understanding of what that is. We seek to build a caring inclusive community which understands that an injury to one is an injury to all. At the same time, our caring community is going to need to deal decisively with an opposition that is sometimes ruthless. We hope to demonstrate that the power necessary to win greater democracy will likely rise out of an organization that unites people in new ways–across union boundaries, across community lines, across the fences of race and sex/gender. We believe that good humor and friendships are a vital part of building this kind of organization, as important as theoretical clarity. Friendships allow us to understand that action always reveals errors–the key way we learn. We chose Brer Rabbit as a symbol to underline the good cheer that rightfully guides the struggle for justice. Every part of the world is our briar patch. We had modest success in defeating the standardized test, the MEAP, in Michigan. We work in faculty organizations and unions to deal with the racism and sexism in academia. We try to press forward questions of class size, curricular freedom, anti-racist pedagogy, real inclusion, and a just tax system. As part of the Whole Schooling Consortium, we have sponsored forums in the U.S., uniting hundreds of people for democracy and equality.

The Rouge Forum holds meetings on a regular basis at both local and national levels. The national conferences have been held on a more or less annual basis; all meetings are action-oriented and the national conferences usually include workshops for teachers and students; panel discussions; community-building and cultural events; as well as academic presentations. Many prominent voices for democracy and critical pedagogy have participated in Rouge Forum meetings. On its website you’ll find the latest information about upcoming Rouge Forum meetings and conferences as well information on past conferences, including abstracts, papers, and videos.

***END***

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Ruth Rikowski @ Academia: http://lsbu.academia.edu/RuthRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Ruth Rikowski at Serendipitous Moments: http://ruthrikowskiim.blogspot.co.uk/

 

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Rouge Forum

Rouge Forum

ROUGE FORUM DISPATCH – 16th DECEMBER 2012

Dear Friends

The Dispatch is updated here http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

The Dispatch goes on hiatus until the new year.

Please remember the Rouge Forum Conference 2013.

Winning the Class Struggle Against Corporate Education Reform

Call for Proposals: http://rougeforumconference.wordpress.com/rouge-forum-2013/call-for-proposals-rf-2013/
May 16-19, 2012
Wayne State University
Detroit, Michigan

Rouge Forum 2013 Call for Proposals

The core issue of our time is the clash of the real promise for perpetual war and booming inequality met by the potential of connecting reason to power with organized mass class conscious resistance in schools, on the job, in communities, and in the military … and what you do counts!

The Rouge Forum brings together academic presentations and panel discussions, performances, community building, and cultural events. This conference will center on such questions as:

* Overall, what do we need to know and what do we need to do to win against corporate education reform in our classrooms?

* In what ways are our classrooms, schools, universities, unions, etc. occupied by capitalism, the military, racism, inequality?

* And what do these occupations demand from us pedagogically? What are the obstacles that must be overcome to achieve democratic education?

* What can we learn from Wisconsin 2011, the Occupy Movement, and the Chicago Teacher’s Strike to make us smarter and stronger in our struggle against corporate education reform?

* How do we educate to liberate ourselves from the impact of empire? How do we push back against the imperializing of our classrooms and communities?

* How do we occupy our classrooms, schools universities, and unions and communities in an effort to create education that is in the public interests?

Calling on artists … Pop up radical art gallery would be for artists to submit 2-3 D pieces that they can bring with them to the conference to display as part of an opening or Friday / Saturday night reception activity.

Good luck to our side,
Rich Gibson

 

*****END*****

‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vw3VloKBvZc

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Glenn Rikowski’s paper, Critical Pedagogy and the Constitution of Capitalist Society has been published at Heathwood Press as a Monthly Guest Article for September 2012, online at:

http://www.heathwoodpress.com/monthly-guest-article-august-critical-pedagogy-and-the-constitution-of-capitalist-society-by-glenn-rikowski/

Heathwood Press: http://www.heathwoodpress.com 

Rouge

THE ROUGE FORUM: UPDATE 3rd MARCH 2012

The Rouge Forum Dispatch is updated here: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Susan Ohanian will be a Keynote Speaker at the Rouge Forum Conference. Susan’s advocacy work keeps at its core her 20 years as a teacher. Her more than 300 essays on education issues have appeared in periodicals ranging from Phi Delta Kappan cover stories to The Atlantic, Nation, USA Today, Washington Monthly, Extra! (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting), and numerous education journals. One of her 26 book on education policy and practice introduced the word Standardisto.

Although currently censored at the NCTE online discussion site, Susan’s website received the NCTE’s George Orwell Award for Distinguished Contributions to Honesty and Clarity in Public Language. She has delivered the annual MacClement Lecture for Excellence in Education, Queens University, Ontario, Canada, the Helen Oakes lecture at Temple University, and the Biber Lecture, Bank Street College, New York.

Susan started a website to protest the passage of NCLB. She had hoped to shut it down by now, but things keep getting worse, so she persists.

Call for Proposals

Rouge Forum 2012
OCCUPY EDUCATION! Class Conscious Pedagogies for Social Change
June 22-24, 2012
Miami University
Oxford, OH
Proposals Due April 15, 2012

The Rouge Forum 2012 will be held at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. The University’s picturesque campus is located 50 minutes northwest of Cincinnati. The conference will be held June 22-24, 2012.

Proposals for papers, panels, performances, workshops, and other multimedia presentations should include title(s) and names and contact information for presenter(s). The deadline for sending proposals is April 15. The Steering Committee will email acceptance notices by May 1. (details http://rougeforum2012.wordpress.com/rf-2012-call-for-proposals/)

Good Luck to our side
Rich Gibson

***END***

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM: UPDATE 12th FEBRUARY 2012

Dear Friends

The Rouge Forum Dispatch is updated here http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Remember the Call For Proposals for the Rouge Forum Conference

Rouge Forum 2012
OCCUPY EDUCATION! Class Conscious Pedagogies for Social Change
June 22-24, 2012
Miami University
Oxford, OH
Proposals Due April 15, 2012

The Rouge Forum 2012 will be held at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
The University’s picturesque campus is located 50 minutes northwest of Cincinnati. The conference will be held June 22-24, 2012.

Proposals for papers, panels, performances, workshops, and other multimedia presentations should include title(s) and names and contact information for presenter(s). The deadline for sending proposals is April 15. The Steering Committee will email acceptance notices by May 1.
(details at: http://rougeforum2012.wordpress.com/rf-2012-call-for-proposals/)

Greece: General Strike vs Class War from Above Greek workers walked off the job on Tuesday to protest a new barrage of austerity measures being demanded by the country’s foreign creditors in exchange for a second bailout of $170 billion without which Greece faces a potentially catastrophic default within weeks.

Coppers Sweep Occupy DC Dozens of U.S. Park Police officers in riot gear and on horseback converged before dawn Saturday on one of the nation’s last remaining Occupy sites, with police clearing away tents they said were banned under park rules. At least seven people were arrested.
http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/feb/05/tp-police-clear-occupy-dc-site-7-held/

Good luck to our side,
RICH GIBSON

**END**

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

 

‘Human Herbs’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

‘Stagnant’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vw3VloKBvZc

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM 2012

Dear Friends,

The Rouge Forum Dispatch is updated here  http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

And please note fhe Announcement of the 2012 Rouge Forum Conference and call for proposals. Join us!

Call for Proposals

Rouge Forum 2012
OCCUPY EDUCATION! Class Conscious Pedagogies for Social Change
June  22-24, 2012
Miami University
Oxford, OH

Proposals Due April 15, 2012

The Rouge Forum 2012 will be held at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. The University’s picturesque campus is located 50 minutes northwest of Cincinnati. The conference will be held June 22-24, 2012.

Proposals for papers, panels, performances, workshops, and other multimedia presentations should include title(s) and names and contact information for presenter(s). The deadline for sending proposals is April 15.  The Steering Committee will email acceptance notices by May 1.

Bringing together academic presentations and performances (from some of the most prominent voices for democratic, critical, and/or revolutionary pedagogy), panel discussions, community-building, and cultural events, this action-oriented conference will center on questions such as:
* How are we bringing the principles and actions of the Occupy Wall Street movement into the classroom and other venues such as unions and workplaces?
* In what ways are our classrooms, schools, universities, unions, etc. occupied by capitalism, the military, racism, and inequality? And what do these occupations demand from us pedagogically?
* How do (or can) we occupy our classrooms, schools, universities, and unions in an effort to create education that is in the public interest? How do we, as educators, resist imperialist wars, rising inequalities, racism, capitalist greed? How do we support and foster students’ critical analysis of the world and their agency to act and change the world?
* What can we learn from ongoing and past popular protest movements (e.g., OWS, Arab Spring, Wisconsin 2011, Paris 1968; 1971 May Day Protests) that will strategically and tactically advance efforts to create education for a more equitable and just world?
* How do we take the Occupy metaphor and actions to the next level? What would it mean to TAKE or SEIZE rather than OCCUPY?
* Do we want to “save our schools” as they are now? Indeed: Are the current public schools “our” schools? How can we transform so-called public schools into schools that serve the interests and needs of the majority?
* What does teaching and learning for an equitable and democratic society look like? What are the obstacles that must be overcome to achieve democratic education?

SUBMISSIONS

Proposal Formats

Individual Proposal: (30 minutes)
The Rouge Forum welcomes individual paper proposals, with the understanding that those accepted will be grouped together around common or overlapping themes, Presenters will have approximately 45 minutes to present or summarize their individual papers.  Individual paper submissions will be considered for panels with the same topic/theme. If you would prefer to present your paper/research individually you should consider the alternative format proposal. A 200-500 word abstract of the paper will be peer reviewed for acceptance to the conference.

Symposium Proposal: (90 minutes)
Presenters are also welcomed to submit proposals for a symposium. A symposium is typically composed of a chair and discussant and three to five participants who present or summarize their papers.  Each symposium is organized around a common theme.  Each participant will have between 15 and 45 minutes to present their papers, depending upon the number of participants involved in the symposium. A 200-500 word abstract of the symposium will be peer reviewed for acceptance to the conference

Panel Proposal: (90 minutes)
A panel discussion is another venue available presenters. A panel discussion is typically composed of three to six participants who discuss their scholarly work within the context of a dialogue or conversation on a topic or theme related to the conference theme. Typically, each panelist is given 10-15 minutes to discuss the topic, present theoretical ideas, and/or point to relevant research. A chair should be identified who introduces the panel and frames the issues and questions being addressed.  In addition to the chair, we encourage (but do not require) organizers of panels to name a discussant to the comments of the panelists. Individual proposal submissions will be combined into panels with the same theme/topic. A 200-500 word abstract of the panel discussion will be peer reviewed for acceptance to the conference.

Alternative Format and Special Interest Groups (90 minutes)
Alternative proposals that do not fit into the above categories, such as workshops, performances, video and multimedia presentations, and round-table dialogues, are encouraged.  We also welcome proposals for the organization of special interest groups. A 150-250 word abstract of the panel discussion will be peer reviewed for acceptance to the conference.

Email proposals to Joe Wegwert (Joe.Wegwert@nau.edu) by April 15, 2012.

Good luck to our side,
RICH GIBSON

**END**

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

‘Human Herbs’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

‘Stagnant’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vw3VloKBvZc

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM @ AERA 2012

Hi Folks

If you’re planning on being inVancouver for the American Educational Research Association in April 2012, I hope you’ll attend The Rouge Forum @ AERA 2012.

Web site: www.rougeforumconference.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=240261179366501

Details below. Please share in your networks.

Confirmed Speakers include:

Antonia Darder, Loyola Marymount U
Abraham DeLeon, U of Texas, San Antonio
Gustavo Fischman, Arizona State U
Elizabeth Heilman, Michigan State U
Nathalia Jaramillo, U of Auckland
Philip Kovacs, U of Alabama, Huntsville
Rebecca Martusewicz, Eastern Michigan U
Sandra Mathison, U of British Columbia
Peter McLaren, U of Auckland
Stephen Petrina, U of British Columbia
Brad Porfilio, Lewis U
E. Wayne Ross, U of British Columbia
Kenneth Saltman, DePaul U
Patrick Shannon, Penn State U

*****

The Rouge Forum @ AERA 2012

www.rougeforumconference.org

Free Interactive Conference Open to All

To Know is Not Enough: Activist Scholarship, Social Change & The Corporate University

Friday April 13, 2012

Universityof British Columbia,

Robson Square Campus

HSBC Hall

Vancouver, BC

The theme for the 2012 annual meeting of the American Education Research Association is “Non Satis Scire: To Know Is Not Enough.” It is laudable that AERA is promoting “the use of research to improve education and serve the public good” rather than the mere accumulation of research knowledge, but The Rouge Forum is interested in exploring what it means for scholars, and educators in general, to move beyond “knowing” to the pursuit of activist agendas for social change:  

·      What happens when teachers and other academics connect reason to power and power to resistance?

·      How can academic work (in universities and other learning environments) support local and global resistance to global neoliberal capitalism?

·      How do we respond to the obstacles and threats faced as activist scholars?

The Rouge Forum @ AERA will bring together world-renowned scholars, teachers, community organizers, and other activists to discuss these questions and others related to activist scholarship, social change, academic freedom, and work in the corporate university as part of a one-day interactive conference at the Robson Square Campus of University of British Columbia in downtownVancouver.

E. Wayne Ross

http://www.ewayneross.net

wayne.ross@mac.com

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM MAY DAY EDITION

Dear Friends, The Rouge Forum Dispatch with Mayday greetings, news of the schools and society (class war and empires’ wars) is updated here: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Just weeks until the Rouge Forum Conference, May 20-22, at Lewis University in Chicagoland. Come join a truly participatory conference of leading school workers, students, vets, and community people who, at base, recognize that social class has a lot to do with our current conditions.

Here is a link on the schedule, directions, and more: http://www.rougeforumconference.org/

Good luck to our side.
Rich Gibson

 

***END***

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor,  north Wales)  

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Education Crisis

THE ROUGE FORUM – UPDATE 8th APRIL 2011

Dear Friends

You can register now for the Rouge Forum Conference in Chicagoland, May 20-22, with keynoters Peter McLaren, Dennis Carlson, and Substance News’ George Schmidt at: http://www.rougeforumconference.org/

The Rouge Forum Dispatch with news of the Schools Not Banks demonstrations in Oakland and that too rare context which links schools and society is here: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Good luck to our side,
Rich Gibson

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Red

ROUGE FORUM UPDATE – 5th MARCH 2011

Dear Friends,

The Rouge Forum Update including the Best and Worst Things in the History of the World, heaps of Spy vs Spy stuff, and some material about the school resistance to boot, is here: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Don’t forget the Rouge Forum Conference, May 20-22 in ChicagoLand at Lewis University. The tentatively scheduled presenters include Peter McLaren, Dennis Carlson, and George Schmidt, editor of Substance News.

The Call for Proposals and details are linked here: http://www.rougeforumconference.org/

Good luck to us, every one.
Rich Gibson

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM – UPDATE 19th NOVEMBER 2010

 The Rouge Forum Update is here: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Congratulations to Rouge Forum Keynote Speaker, Alan Spector, on the publication of his book, with Peter Knapp, “Crisis and Change – Basic Questions of Marxist Sociology,” available here: http://www.rowmanlittlefield.com/Catalog/SingleBook.shtml?command=Search&db=^DB/CATALOG.db&eqSKUdata=0742520439&thepassedurl=[thepassedurl ]  It’s the best piece of Marxist sociology yet.

Don’t forget to make plans for the Rouge Forum Conference 2011. The May 20-22 Chicago forum is outlined here: http://www.ewayneross.net/Rouge_Forum_Conference_2011/Welcome.html

Good luck to us, every one.

Rich Gibson

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Red

THE ROUGE FORUM – UPDATE 13th NOVEMBER 2010 AND LONDON STUDENTS POINT THE WAY

 

A message from Rich Gibson

Dear Friends,

The Rouge Forum web page is updated at: http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

We invite you to join us in Chicago for Rouge Forum 2011. http://www.rougeforumconference.org/

The Rouge Forum 2011 conference will be held May 20-22 at Lewis University’s suburban campus in Romeoville, IL.

Call for proposals and information on conference registration and housing will be online soon!

And here is a call for chapter authors: Hip-Hop(e): The Cultural Practice and Critical Pedagogy of International Hip-Hop.
Peter Lang
Co-Edited with Mike J. Viola UCLA
by Brad Porfilio
http://lewisu.academia.edu/BradPorfilio/Papers/330392/Hip-Hop_e_Call_for_Chapters

 

Good luck to us, every one.
Rich Gibson

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Wavering on Ether: http://blog.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Red

ROUGE FORUM UPDATE: UPRISING IN FRANCE, VICTORY IN CHICAGO!!

A Message from Rich Gibson

Dear Friends

The Rouge Forum Blog is updated here; http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

For those headed to San Francisco for the Uprising Conference next weekend, please email as to where you will be, phone contacts, etc.

Good luck to us, every one.
Rich Gibson

Report from Anon in France (10-18):

I’m exhausted.

I’ve spent the last three days going from road block to road block, together with teachers, railroad workers, truckers, nurses, etc. So far, in our sector, we’ve managed the feat of keeping the Arnages oil depot totally closed since Friday 4 AM!

As a result, all the petrol stations in a radius of 70 kms are closed, completely out of gas. I slept 4 hours on Friday night, 6 hours on Saturday, 2 on Monday … Today, we got the main Teachers’ Union to call on all striking teachers to come and help block all the remaining fuel depots. The police can’t intervene, because the truckers have established road blocks on the major roads leading to the oil depot. What is incredible is that despite the fact that there is no more oil available, and therefore that people are blocked at home, a resounding 71% of the population approves of the strike (according to today’s opinion polls).

The movement is set to last at least another week. I spent the whole of Sunday night with transport (railway and truckers) workers playing cards and drinking beer. It was quite cold (2°C) around 4 AM, but the railroad workers brought several truck-loads of “palettes” (empty wooden containers) and we lit a might bonfire.

Striking workers from the neighbouring Renault factory brought firecrackers and we spent the wee hours of the morning lighting them. Workers are determined to fight until the bitter end. Workers who chose not to go on strike are being encouraged to donate part of their salary to the workers of the most “strategic” sectors, especially the Donges refinery.

Personally, this is my 6th day of Strike. An open-ended strike that might not be the best way of going about things, the consensus now being that “revolving” strikes (15% of the workforce on strike on a given day) would enable us to hold out longer. The support from “ordinary people” is astounding. When we block a freeway, drivers often honk to support us, give us money, hand us daily newspapers, even though we are effectively blocking them.

I’ve decided to stay on strike for a further three days but to spend more time with my family, which is also what the union is advocating. Some comrades have spent 4 days without going home and the union is worried this may cause trouble with spouses, who are forced to look after the kids, which would further undermine our resolve.

All 12 French oil refineries are on strike until next Friday. Many depots are blocked. Half the trains (including major ones) are not running. Truckers have blocked the roads leading to the main production areas, and factories cannot function because they lack raw material and pieces (they don’t have any stocks of materials stored because they believe storage costs money).

Anyway, the mood is indescribable. Workers from every sector are united and determined, and for the first time, many workers can chat with people employed in other industries knowing that they share a common goal.

The only problem is, it will be hard, very hard to go back to work. But thanks to the government, people are prepared to remain on strike until next week. Then we’ll see.

It’s a general strike and a lot of ordinary workers I’ve talked to are determined not to resume work until the retirement age is brought back to 60.

END

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Wavering on Ether: http://blog.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com