Changes between Version 11 and Version 12 of ussf_npc_position_paper


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Timestamp:
Dec 2, 2011, 9:47:45 AM (8 years ago)
Author:
Mallory Knodel
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  • ussf_npc_position_paper

    v11 v12  
    2323The USSF, for all its conflicts and challenges, demonstrated to the US left that multi-racial organizing can happen and this understanding was critical to, for example, the Occupy movement. It is, effectively, a major political statement and proof that that statement is feasible. There's a long way to go, of course, and the USSF has to play the role of modeling racially integrated organizing led predominantly by people of color.
    2424
    25 Outside the US, the Social Forum should participate in the development of the "border challenge" Social Forum movement -- a movement that refuses to recognize the artificial borders that divide us.
     25Outside the US, the Social Forum should participate in the development of the "border challenge" Social Forum movement -- a movement that refuses to recognize the artificial borders that divide us. Movements within the US should begin participating in more solidarity actions with movements outside of the US. Inspiration, like that from the Arab Spring that helped drive the occupy movement, is not enough.
     26
     27Bringing delegations of US activists to global convergences like the WSF is transformative and helps build solidarity, which are both important parts of international movement work. Based on MF/PL's participation in the WSF International Council, along with other members of the NPC, we're aware of the necessity of alternatives to the forum process. Yet it remains as one of the only places to organize internationally an alter-globalization movement, which is still desperately needed today. Increasingly, we're seeing regional and thematic forums with much greater success than the larger WSF because of the intentionality and relevance that these forums bring to both local and international movements. Related to this, the USSF remains a highly-respected event in the international social forum movement due to its prioritization of leadership from truly grassroots leadership.
     28
     29In 2012, a Maghreb/Mashrek regional forum and a world forum on Palestine are just two examples of international processes that MF/PL will be involved in. These will no doubt inspire our work towards the next USSF and further our praxis of using communications and technology to increase democratic participation at forum events.
    2630
    2731'' D) As the nation approaches critical elections in 2012, how can the USSF separate itself from traditional bourgeois understandings of social change (i.e. demands for reform rather than transformation of the exploitative economic system)? How can the USSF process centralize working class struggles, including grassroots democracy, issues of survival, the needs of the many versus the needs of the few? Given all this, what should the Social Forum’s relationship be to the 2012 electoral process? ''
     
    3741'' F) Lastly, the big one...is it time to start a discussion about a 3rd USSF, which would include talks about what should be changed and why? What form might a 3rd USSF take (regional, national), and why? What criteria might we discuss and list to help guide any discussions about if, when, and where? ''
    3842
    39 We believe the next Social Forum should be made up of about four or five regional Social Forums taking place simultaneously within the US. This is the idea put forward by our Co-Director Alfredo Lopez at the last NPC meeting. Three developments encourage us in this direction:
     43When the social forum was born more than 10 years ago, it was revolutionary because it brought social movements together from around the world. Today, simply bringing everyone together is no longer enough; we must focus our movements regionally and thematically in order to achieve our goals. Where large funders have traditionally supported forum processes, today the economic crisis has severely impacted the financial support for all movement-building work, including international summits like the social forum. And what is possible technologically today like blogging, podcasting, and even live video streaming has been developed and utilized by movements over the past 10 years to meet the needs of international convergences.
     44
     45We believe the next Social Forum should be made up of about four or five regional Social Forums taking place simultaneously within the US. This is the idea put forward by our Co-Director Alfredo Lopez at the last NPC meeting. Three developments, mentioned briefly before, encourage us in this direction:
    4046
    4147 * The political situation in this country is acquiring a much more "regional" and "struggle-specific" nature. The alignment and cohesion of forces is taking place around these magnets, precluding any kind of larger, national identity for movements. There is even a regional nature to the Occupy movement which is one of the most "national" movements in recent history. Additionally, many developments are taking place that challenge the idea of borders and the very idea of a United States. For example, is the Southwest a region of the US or part of a region that reaches across the border and include portions of Mexico?