Meet Your Hosts for the "October2011" Occupation
Whenever planning to attend an event, it's always important to know who your hosts are. Sometimes you are dragged along to a party and have no idea who is hosting, and that can end up being a disaster. In the case of this month's "October2011" event planned to begin at the end of this week in Washington, DC, you may find some of the hosts quite interesting.
On their Facebook page, one wall post says "We will not co-opted! While we seek support from everyone agrees with our agenda, we will not be co-opted by political parties or organizations tied to them." However, when visiting their site, October2011.org, you'll find Code Pink, FireDogLake and others among the many involved organizations listed. The person who registered their website is David Swanson, currently the director of Washington's progressive Democrats.com. Is it just me, or does that sound a bit political? In addition to the not-so-bipartisan David, the site itself (as well as David's own site) is hosted by MayFirst.org, operated by Marxist Alfredo Lopez.
So we can get to know the hosts, here is a brief resume for each:
David currently works as the Washington director of Democrats.com, but has many other accomplishments including creating the radical site AfterDowningStreet, authoring "The 35 Articles of Impeachment and the Case for Prosecuting George W. Bush," by Dennis Kucinich (2008), working for ACORN, creating websites for CODEPINK and Cindy Sheehan and much much more.
You can view his many reccommendations here including former employer ACORN, where he was a Communications Coordinator. Also available are references from unions such as the AFL-CIO and former employer Dennis Kucinich.
Alfredo, it may come as no surprise, is a 1960's activist. He was a top leader in the Puerto Rican Socialist Party in the 70's. In more recent years, he has worked to harness the power of the internet as well as win over the techies to the progressive cause. Very union oriented, he worked to get NY unions an online presence in the late '90's. He has taught at various institutions including Columbia University.
Alberto is co-founder of MayFirst.org where progressives can have their sites hosted. They work directly with riseup.net, where many Marxist and anarchist groups coordinate. As recently as March 2011, MayFirst.org sponsored a panel discussion at the LeftForum (board member Frances Fox Piven) entitled "The Revolution Just *Might* Be Televised," at Pace University in NYC.
Apparently he is not too big on national sovereignty and borders. An example of his philosophy might be found in this quote:
Alfredo Lopez writes about our first event in Bolivia, "Through this work, we challenge the false and destructive border and national divisions imposed on the indigenous peoples of our Hemisphere and continuously imposed on us all. We will make this conference a truly Hemispheric conference."
In his "Organic Internet" video, Alfredo references his mentor as having been Arthur Felberbaum of the Marxist Brecht Forum. In explaining the definition and uses of the "organic internet," he states:
"Capitalism has never produced a thing in its' entire history..."
Alfredo's current focus appears to be organizing the techies and the internet worldwide:
With over a billion people engaging in a collective activity, today's Internet is one of humanity's largest social movements, reflecting the kind of social interaction and collective achievement activists like us struggle for world-wide: fundamentally collaborative, democratic and based almost entirely on tools and software that has been produced collaboratively, developed by large, democratic communities and distributed freely. It is truly international and resilient against constant attempts to control its direction and curtail its positive growth. Techies have been fundamental to this movement and will continue to play an increasingly important role in the progress of humanity.
In learning just a bit about only two of the many organizers of these events, we have to be very aware of who they are and what kind of nation they would plan to fill the void with. Unless you are a supporter of a global, Marxist government, I suggest taking an in-depth look at the "hosts" behind your next Occupation.