rn: a bit more on future strategy


Jan Slakov

Dear rn list,   July 12

In discussions at the Bear River workshop, it became clear that a big part
of our efforts, at least for now, will be educational in nature.

One of our aims is to help people gain a better understanding of how the
corporate elite agenda is being pushed on us, so people will be moved to
take up their responsibility as citizens to work for a better, more secure

For CDR (Citizens for a Democratic Renaissance), our e-mail lists will
continue to be major tools in this educational role. Many people find it
hard to keep track of which list is for what, so here is a capsule
description of each list:

*The CYBERJOURNAL (cj list): Richard started this list over 3 years ago. He
sees it as a "movement newspaper" with him as editor and people in various
locations throughout the world forwarding or contributing articles. In
general, the cj is a tool to educate people about globalization and to
provide a counterweight to the heavily biased news available in the mass
media. The exchanges between Richard and readers have helped Richard develop
his analysis and find collaborators in revolution (or evolution, or systemic
change, to use terms some participants are happier with).

*The RENAISSANCE NETWORK list (rn list):  This list started out including
most of the people I had contacted about the workshop we were organizing for
Bear River, Canada for late June/early July. One of its functions was simply
to relieve me of having to write individually to people who had expressed an
interest in the workshop.

Now we see this list as a tool for community building among activists.
Which activists? I think all of us share a conviction that vibrant democracy
is both a means and an end we strive for. And many of us, perhaps most,
grieve at what is happening to Nature and are outraged by the needless
suffering of "man's inhumanity to man". So, many of us are active, in one
way or another, in local movements to promote environmental protection,
peace and reconciliation, respect for human (and non-human!) rights, etc.

*There is also a STRATEGY NETWORK list which Richard initiated just before
the trip to the the US and Canada. He is keeping membership on that list
small, and hopes it will help articulate an effective strategy to counter
corporate globalization.

The discussion of educational strategy at the workshop identified some
tactics/projects we are undertaking or want to undertake.

- The most obvious one is the book on globalization Richard and Carolyn
(Ballard) have been working on together. (The book outline has been
published on the cyberjournal.org web site and contribution essays,
cartoons, etc. are most welcome. If you would like a copy of the outline
e-mailed to you, write to us and ask for the "background information on rkm"

- Memes - short, often witty statements or refrains - can also be put to
effective use. A good example is "think globally, act locally". "Signatures"
used on e-mail messages are often good memes. Here's an example:
If you want peace, prepare for peace (Si vis pacem para pacem).
- Education need not always be didactic! In addition to memes, there are
other tools which can help people shift to healthier world views or
paradigms. Eg. using frameworks, with points juxtaposed in point form, using
metaphor and also story-telling...

- We want to encourage cynical, frustrated activists not to give up, but to
direct some of their energy to working for positive change. Likewise, we
will encourage people who are volounteering in an apolitical manner to
improve their communities to see the political consequences of globalization
and to become more politically active.

The next message will begin the process of rn list introductions. Meeting
each other in person is not possible, but many people and groups on this
list are worth meeting! So, let's do what we can by e-mail!

all the best, Jan

Creo que el mundo es bello, 
que la poesía es como el pan, 
de todos. 

(I believe the world is beautiful
and that poetry, like bread, is for everyone)

Roque Dalton

Jan Slakov, Box 35, Weymouth, NS, Canada B0W 3T0  (902) 837-4980
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