Before an action, I am turmoil inside. I tremble – waves of anxiety crash over me and my fearful mind imagines the worst. And yet, the decision to act made and the plan formed, I do not try to suppress the emotions that surge through me, but focus on enjoying them. So rarely do I feel this intensity, that in the days leading up to civil disobedience I accept my fear as a beautiful aspect of being alive.
Each time is easier than the last. We know that already from our Buy Nothing Day attempts in the past. At first our friends’ ridicule and their cynical smirks made it frightening to follow through with our vow to take the day off from consumerism. And then it was difficult, but rewarding, to muster the courage to do a zombie walk through the mall while consumers stared and security scowled. Now, after years of the situation getting direr and our actions building in intensity, we must not hesitate to do what we have never done before: pull off acts of silent sabotage.
Chris Hedges said it best: “Our way of life is over. Our profligate consumption is finished. Our children will never have the standard of living we had. This is the bleak future. This is reality.” Only a drastic and immediate decrease in “first world” consumption can save us from collapse. But our culture is paralyzed and our “leaders” silent. That is why we must now begin a campaign of civil disobedience against consumer capitalism – transform ourselves from consumers to citizen saboteurs.
So check in with yourself, read the following links and decide how far you are prepared to go. While some of us will engage in pranks, shenanigans, credit card cut-ups, mall invasions and all manner of culture jams and creative détournements, others (maybe you?) will go even further with sit-ins, acts of nonviolent defiance, anarchy and civil disobedience. This Buy Nothing Day, we're sparking global revolution.
The Spirit of Revolt by Pyotr Kropotkin
“What forms will this action take? All forms – indeed, the most varied forms, dictated by circumstances, temperament and the means at disposal. Sometimes tragic, sometimes humorous, but always daring; sometimes collective, sometimes purely individual, this policy of action will neglect none of the means at hand, no event of public life, in order to keep the spirit alive, to propagate and find expression for dissatisfaction, to excite hatred against exploiters, to ridicule the government and expose its weakness and above all and always, by actual example, to awaken courage and fan the spirit of revolt.”Read more
Timeline of Insurrection
“The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us” —Patrick Henry, “Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death”Read more
The Call by Tiqqun
“Our strategy is therefore the following: to immediately establish a series of foci of desertion, of secession poles, of rallying points. For the runaways. For those who leave. A set of places to take shelter from the control of a civilization that is headed for the abyss. It is a matter of giving ourselves the means, of finding the scale in which all those questions, which when addressed separately can drive one to depression, can be resolved.”Read more