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Alternative Draft IOPS Mission Statement

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Peter Lach-Newinsky

[There have been some Forum conversations around the core IOPS statements. Some have argued for trying to make them easier to understand, more generally accessible, or more welcoming, or more exciting and attractive. Others have argued that they are accessible enough and could just be amended in details to reduce some clumsiness of expression. I think all these arguments have a point from their different perspectives, and wouldn’t want to favour one over the other. However, I’ve joined IOPS because its core statements are not ‘perfect’ but CLOSE ENOUGH to my own to not bother about too many details (bit like having a ‘good enough’ mother rather than a ‘perfect’ one).

Having said that, and because it’s been mentioned on the Forum as hiding away at the EARTH project site, here’s my democratic-participatory go at a ‘Mission Statement’ (not sure I even like this rather corporate/quasi-religious phrase). This is just my ‘wish’ Mission Statement, no more, no less. Don’t expect any fervent majorities, given reactions to previous poems blogged here. Guess, if pressed, I’d just like something both simpler AND a little more visionary, exciting, wider, big-breath, utopian…But there ya go, it is what it is what it is …].

 

Draft Alternative IOPS Mission Statement

 

IOPS is an international revolutionary network of people engaged in struggling for a just, more equitable and democratic, self-managing and ecologically sustainable society beyond both capitalism and authoritarian, centrally planned ‘socialism’.

IOPS seeks to further an emerging and radical One World Consciousness at this pivotal stage in human and planetary evolution in which multiple, deep, overlapping crises of the biosphere, imperial rivalry and the capitalist world economy now threaten the very survival of human(e) civilization and a livable planet.

IOPS believes it is time to change the system or be dragged into the abyss of climate chaos, mass extinctions, resource wars, greater inequality and increasing state oppression.

IOPS is internationalist because we believe we are all in this together. It is now One World or None. All nations are now both economically and ecologically interdependent. We can only overcome the deep crises and ecocidal dangers of capitalism together, as One World consciously linked in active solidarity and mutual aid, resistance and reconstruction.

IOPS believes such ideas are not mere theories but conscious expressions of the many ongoing, diverse struggles all over the world for greater social justice, economic and gender equity, democracy, human rights, self-management and ecological justice, preservation and restoration.

IOPS views itself as an integral part of this world-wide network of networks moving towards self-consciousness as One World on One Planet. We hope to further this development by helping make it conscious of its own inner dynamic and direction towards One World consciousness and a global network of new, post-capitalist regions and societies linked from the grassroots up in cooperation, democratic self-management, ecological management and mutual aid.

Believing another world is possible, IOPS rejects both market and centrally planned economies in favour of a participatory society of direct democracy at all levels and in all workplaces, institutions, neighbourhoods and regions.

As capitalism is based on the undemocratic power of the owners and managers of the economy, this kind of liberated society is by definition not possible within capitalism. Its achievement will meet with strong resistance from ruling economic and political elites.

IOPS has a participatory, utopian yet practical vision of how society could be organised on a radically democratic, self-managing basis. We vigorously advocate for popular debate of this vision without seeking to undemocratically impose it on any social movements.

IOPS is anti-capitalist, anti-authoritarian, anti-racist, anti-sexist. It acknowledges that all these activist values are largely interdependent and have equal moral standing. However, it would seem that ecological survival now has a certain objective priority since no other values can be maintained without it.

As an anti-authoritarian, radically democratic organization, IOPS is flexible in its strategy and tactics while always maintaining the following core values:

Self-management

  direct-democratic decision-making by the people themselves on all levels of society

Equity/Justice

a fair and ecologically just redistribution of wealth and income within and between nations

Solidarity/Internationalism

mutual support for struggles and mutual aid within and between regions and nations

Diversity

respect and legal guarantees for dissent, difference and minorities at all levels

Ecological Stewardship

protection, care and restoration of the ecological life-support systems all depend on

Human Rights/Rule of Law

extension and deepening of human and civil rights won in centuries of struggle against power

Non-Violence

a peaceful, participatory society can only be reached by creative, peaceful, participatory means

 

 

Discussion 2 Comments

  • Marlo Pedroso 10th Oct 2012

    Well done Peter. Reads in a far more engaging and riveting way than most of the other IOPS drafts of vision and such. Glad to see a poet take a stab at this. We need people who are creative to transform these strong ideas from a dry academic, rational prose to something that will resonate with people on an emotional and spiritual level if we expect to win people over to our ideas.

    Marx new this all too well. Reading the Communist Manifesto, whether or not you agree with his philosophy, you are moved by the beauty and power of the language. Thanks for taking a stab at this.

  • Peter Lach-Newinsky 10th Oct 2012

    Many thanks Marlo, much appreciated. Very much agree with you about the need for 'resonating with people on an emotional and spiritual level'. Perhaps central, this point. '68' was all about that, not just for me...

    And, yes indeed, the old Commie Manifesto is indeed a linguistically powerful document, old Karl up there with his almost contemporary Walt Whitman in founding modernism and continuing the big-breath prophetic voice (there might be a poetic line from Old Testament prophets to Milton, Blake, Whitman, Neruda, Ginsberg I reckon...). The Manifesto and 1844 Paris Manuscripts are where the action is in Marx, I reckon, more 'eternal' and pithy and poetically anarchist than the labour theory of value and falling rate of profit stuff...

    And how's your old Zen anarchy idea going, I wonder?