[WSF-Discuss] Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016

Jai Sen jai.sen at cacim.net
Mon Apr 6 02:45:58 CDT 2015


PS : My sincere apologies, in my post as below I overlooked responding also to the post by Jay Nair (also of Canada), where he makes a very important point that is directly relevant to he question we’re talking about : The tabling any day now of a draconian ‘Security Bill’ by the current government in Canada.  Thanks for making this point, Jay.

I’m pasting in his post below, so that it’s also available to Raphaël Canet and Carminda Mac Lorin, and while I'm doing this, (a) Brian (Murphy), can I request you to please also come in on this exchange with any observations and information you have ?, and (b), to make things more concrete, here are some things that readers who still imagine Canada as it once used to be – a friendly, open, warm country – might like to take a look at :

‘Bill C-51: Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015’, @ http://voices-voix.ca/en/facts/profile/bill-c-51-anti-terrorism-act-2015

‘Bill C-51: 8 things activists and dissenters in Canada need to know’, @ http://www.canadianprogressiveworld.com/2015/03/19/bill-c-51-8-things-activists-and-dissenters-in-canada-need-to-know/

‘Bill C-51 Backgrounder #2: The Canadian Security Intelligence Service's Proposed Power to 'Reduce' Security Threats Through Conduct that May Violate the Law and Charter’, @ http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2564272

            JS


On Apr 5 2015, at 11:05 PM, Jay Nair <jinair at me.com> wrote:

> Comrades
> We in Canada are going to get the new Bill C-51 Security Bill thrust down our throats soon. Be has to consider this Act, if the current Conservatives win the next election. Then we will be living in a police state 
> Just take note. 
> Jay
> 
> Sent from my iPhone

On Apr 6 2015, at 12:35 PM, Jai Sen <jai.sen at cacim.net> wrote:

> Monday, April 6 2015
> 
> 
> 
> Greetings !
> 
> Since this – creating a parallel open space complementary to official bodies where people outside those bodies could critically discuss the WSF – was the very reason why the WSFDiscuss list was created in the first place, back in 2005, as list admin and one of the founding group I'm of course pleased to see this discussion on the 2016 WSF taking place on WSFDiscuss, and in particular to have these critical reflections on what ‘Canada’ is actually like these days, and these serious suggestions for ‘what is to be done’ to get around the very likely roadblocks to activists (and especially the seriously militant, and from the North as well as the South) getting in to the country.
> 
> I think it would be good though, and since the Forum is coming up just next year, if we could also hear from the organisers what their thoughts are on all this – and even if Patrick, you have already vouched for them !  I’m therefore copying in here two of the main organisers, Raphaël Canet and Carminda Mac Lorin, and would like to invite both of you to please come in on this discussion and tell us how you in the Organising Committee for FSM 2016 are addressing the issues that have been raised here – and also, in particular, what your analysis is with regard to the intolerant climate that has emerged in Canada in this general area, and how you are proposing to address the possible outcomes of this.  (Please have a look at the thread of posts that have come in on this, as below, including from Canadians.)
> 
> (I’ve already earlier on invited you both to consider subscribing to WSFDiscuss – which would make your posting here much easier and where you would yourself then automatically receive all the posts, and I warmly invite you to do so here again.  To subscribe, all you have to do is to simply send an empty email to worldsocialforum-discuss-subscribe at openspaceforum.net.)
> 
> To this, let me add my own two bits.  First, and since I am now in Canada for quite a lot of the year, let me say that I agree completely with what those who have posted here have said, from Patrick Bond’s opening question and expression of concern – and thanks for this, Patrick – to the observations from Bill Carroll and Michael Gurstein.  My sense is that blocking and screening is a very serious possibility, and as Michael has said, this is likely to be so even if the present government is voted out in the elections later this year, simply because the systems have got seriously set in place.
> 
> Two, and while Peter, while it's of course ‘nice’ that you felt you could respond to Patrick’s question ‘without even consulting Gina’ [Vargas, who for those who don't know this, is not only Peter Waterman’s partner but also one of the most senior and most respected members of the WSF’s International Council], and give us your / her assurance that the question ‘has of course been addressed’, to be very frank I along with others have raised this and other questions several times over the past some years, with the organisers and with members of the International Council, and I anyway have never got, heard, or seen really substantive, comprehensive answers. 
> 
> (Other questions have included : Just what are the reasons that the International Council has had for deciding (a) that the 2016 Forum should be held in the North, for the first time in the WSF’s history – and contradicting and overturning a political-strategic decision made early on ?; and (b) to hold it in Montréal ?  And : Just what is the list of all the members of the Organising Committee of the Montréal Forum – not just of its core group –, and why and how is the IC so confident that this group can handle such a major event ?) 
> 
> In the way that things in the WSF are handled, it’s always been a warm and friendly assurance something along the lines of ‘Don't you worry, of course we’re handling this !’.  (And in relation to the Committee, the only ‘reason’ I've been given for being confident is that ‘It’s full of young people !’.  This is certainly a great feature – but seriously, is this enough ?)  To now be very frank about this, for me this attitude and kind of response has all along been a puzzling, frustrating, and disappointing aspect of seeing the Montréal Forum being organised.  To me it just seems not serious enough, quite aside from not respecting those who are asking questions.
> 
> To be blunt, and with the warmest respect and affection for Gina and some other members of the IC, and also with friendly respect for Raphael and Carminda who I know a little, as I’m sure all of you would otherwise agree, organising something like a Forum has to be deadly serious as well as being fun and communitarian, and we all need – here and elsewhere – to get past talking about these issues on a casual level, subconsciously muffled by friendship and comradeship.  We need to be able to talk about the question that has come up on this list – and all the other related issues - in simple, substantive, and objective terms. 
> 
> Now that this question has arisen again, I do hope we can do that here, and seriously and substantively.  Let’s see.
> 
>             JS
> 
> 
> 
> On Apr 5 2015, at 10:46 PM, utopie at ips.org wrote:
> 
>>  
>>  
>> I am aware of that, but it should be for an innocuous conference, not gay or sensitive issues, like space...and the canadian organizing committee can take the responsibility to vouch the legal and financial responsibilities.-..but again, canada is a more serious country than Italy...but to ask for visas for a world social forum it looks to me as a very difficult proposition...certainly the canadian organizing committeee can set up something od hoc to get a proforma invitation...if we want to chan ge the world, we must take some license from the official straightjacket....roberto
>>  
>>  
>>  
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: "Michael Gurstein" <gurstein at gmail.com>
>> Sent: Sunday, 5 April, 2015 1:02pm
>> To: "'Discussion list about the WSF'" <worldsocialforum-discuss at openspaceforum.net>
>> Subject: Re: [WSF-Discuss] Fw: Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016
>> 
>> Roberto,
>>  
>> In Canada for that approach to be meaningful (at the borders/consulates etc.) it would require a degree of formalization that would very likely involve legal/financial implications (risks) for the “sponsoring” (inviting) agency, unfortunately. (In the past it has worked occasionally worked (and not worked) but on an individual basis.)
>>  
>> (A random assortment of recent horror stories from Google…
>>  
>> http://www.thetelegram.com/News/Local/2014-04-03/article-3674954/Immigration-Canada-cites-lack-of-money-in-denying-woman-a-visa/1
>>  
>> http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2014/05/22/ugandan_gay_activists_denied_visas_to_world_pride_conference.html
>>  
>> http://o.canada.com/news/ottawa-denies-visas-for-heads-of-russian-chinese-space-agencies-to-attend-major-conference
>>  
>> M
>>  
> 
> On Apr 5 2015, at 10:26 PM, Örsan Şenalp <orsan1234 at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
>> good thing is canadian and montrealean syudents are setting the scene
>> for bringing the struggle against capitalsim in the middle of the
>> wsf.. a video from PutinTv:
>> 
>> Canadian cops fire tear gas at student protesters’ faces (VIDEO):
>> http://rt.com/news/244505-canada-police-brutality-students/
> 
> 
> On Apr 5 2015, at 10:23 PM, peter waterman <peterwaterman1936 at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
>> Nice one, Utopie!
>> 
>> P
> 
> On Apr 5 2015, at 10:17 PM, Michael Gurstein <gurstein at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
>> IMHO, the pressure points in Canada are more likely to be found in the Quebec or Montreal governments than in Ottawa which, even if the government does change (hopefully) this year it will require a long time and very considerable efforts to unwind the changes (including appointments) that Harper and his gang have managed to achieve.
>>  
>> The government of Quebec is probably more responsive (for economic rather than ideological reasons) and the government of Montreal even more so as they are trying to present themselves as a major global conference host for economic reasons. Both of these would likely have some influence in these areas.
>>  
>> M
> 
>> From: WorldSocialForum-Discuss [mailto:worldsocialforum-discuss-bounces at openspaceforum.net] On Behalf Of utopie at ips.org
>> Sent: April 5, 2015 9:44 AM
>> To: Discussion list about the WSF
>> Cc: Debate is a listserve that attempts to promote information and analyses of interest to the independent left in South and Southern Africa; Discussion list about the WSF
>> Subject: Re: [WSF-Discuss] Fw: Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016
>>  
>>  
>>  
>>  
>> The best way to get around this is to identify an academic body or a pubolic entity ( like a local council), who is willing to send letters of invitation to an event in the same dates of the wsf. It would be very difficult for any american or canadian consulate to refuse a visa, if there is a public entity sponsoring the invitation, and stating that it will take care of the invited . This means you have to find somewhere in canada a legitimate public entity accepting to emit such invitations only pro forma, to facilitate visas. At home, I knows at least a dozens of towns and more univerisities willing to do so. But may be canada is a more serious country...robertop
>>  
>>  
>>  
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: "William Carroll" <wcarroll at uvic.ca>
>> Sent: Sunday, 5 April, 2015 12:30pm
>> To: "peterwaterman1936 at gmail.com" <peterwaterman1936 at gmail.com>, "Discussion list about the WSF" <worldsocialforum-discuss at openspaceforum.net>, "Debate is a listserve that attempts to promote information and analyses of interest to the independent left in South and Southern Africa" <debate-list at fahamu.org>
>> Subject: Re: [WSF-Discuss] Fw: Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016
>> 
>> From the belly of the beast (and Canada’s Harper regime IS beastly – probably second to Israel among the reactionary governments of the capitalist democracies) I can confirm that this is a real worry.  However, there is a federal election this October, and it is quite possible that Stephen Harper & co. will be dismissed.  Any incoming government would be rather different, I think, in its approach to global civil society, WSF etc. , shifting from George W Bush-style neoconservatism to something closer to Lester Pearson’s liberal internationalism.
>> So, I would recommend keeping an eye on this issue and , should the Harper regime remain in power in 2016, prepare for the worst, along the lines Peter has articulated
>> Bill Carroll
>> University of Victoria
> 
>> From: WorldSocialForum-Discuss [mailto:worldsocialforum-discuss-bounces at openspaceforum.net] On Behalf Of peter waterman
>> Sent: April-05-15 9:20 AM
>> To: Discussion list about the WSF; Debate is a listserve that attempts to promote information and analyses of interest to the independent left in South and Southern Africa
>> Subject: Re: [WSF-Discuss] Fw: Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016
>>  
>> Patrick:
>> 
>> Without even asking Gina, who is sitting diagonally from me, one meter away, on her own computadora, I can assure you that this question was addressed!
>> 
>> That does not, however, mean that we can avoid organising a multi-pronged campaign, at all relevant levels, to ensure that the borders are open for WSF participants. I would, however, assume that however forceful such a campaign and whatever gestures the Canadian state might make, that there will be people/countries/organisations excluded. In such cases, there would need to be 'name and shame' demonstrations at Canadian embassies, consulates - and even companies - around the world. And maybe one should warn the Canadians that this will be the case if they refuse visas to a global civil society event.
>> 
>> Pw
>> 
>>  
>> 2014. From Coldwar Communism to the Global Justice Movement: Itinerary of a Long-Distance Internationalist. http://www.into-ebooks.com/book/from_coldwar_communism _to_the_global_emancipatory_movement/ (Free).
>> 2014. Interface Journal Special (Co-Editor), December 2014. 'Social Movement Internationalisms'. (Free).
>> 2014. 'The Networked Internationalism of Labour's Others', in Jai Sen (ed), Peter Waterman (co-ed), The Movement of Movements: Struggles for Other Worlds  (Part I). (10 Euros).
>> 2012. EBook: Recovering Internationalism.  [A compilation of papers from the new millenium. Now free in two download formats]
>> 2013. EBook (co-editor), February 2013: World Social Forum: Critical Explorations http://www.into-ebooks.com/book/world_social_forum/
>> 2012. Interface Journal Special (co-editor), November 2012: For the Global Emancipation of Labour 
>> 2005-? Ongoing. Blog: http://www.unionbook.org/profile/peterwaterman.???. Needed: a Global Labour Charter Movement (2005-Now!)
>> 2011. Under, Against, Beyond: Labour and Social Movements Confront a Globalised, Informatised Capitalism (2011) (c. 1,000 pages of Working Papers, free, from the 1980's-90's).
>>  
>>  
>> On Sun, Apr 5, 2015 at 10:10 AM, Patrick Bond <pbond at mail.ngo.za> wrote:
>> Full support, I know some of the organisers as extremely capable comrades. 
>> 
>> But as I recall, the many discussions about Montreal hosting in the prior years focused on the border problem: hostility to people from the South when it comes to visas, and also to North American activists who have been prevented from crossing due to their activist record. The Ottawa regime has a fortress mentality. Has that been addressed? 
>> 
>> Cheers,
>> Patrick
>> 
>> On 2015/04/05 04:08 PM, jasper teunissen wrote:
>> Don't think this was posted already on this list:
>> http://www.fsm2016.org/en/montreal-will-play-host-to-the-world-social-forum-in-august-2016-2/
>> 
>> Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016
>> 30 March 2015Non classé @enVan Quoc Vinh
>> Montreal Will Play Host To the World Social Forum in August 2016.
>> Unprecedented in a Northern Country!
>> Tunis, March 29th 2015:
>> Today, March 29th 2015, it was decided that Montreal would be hosting the next World Social Forum taking place in August 2016. Following a meeting that took place during the 2015 World Social Forum (WSF) in Tunis, the International Council officially confirmed that the next global civil society meeting for an alternative world would be held in Montreal. According to Chico Whitaker, a founding member of the WSFs, “this first Northern World Social Forum is a historical opportunity for us to revitalize global social struggles; and all of this will be carried out by the passion and idealism of Quebec’s youth!”
>> More than 50,000 people are expected to convene in downtown Montreal next year for this exciting event. The WSF hopes to become a space for the collective construction of solutions to the various challenges we currently face (ecological, economic, security, social and political crises). Quebec’s youth and its new social movements were able to convince the International Council to sign off on the WSF being hosted in a Northern country for the first time since its inception in 2001. This surprising twist of events epitomizes the importance of alliances between peoples and nations in creating a better world for today and tomorrow.
>> It is with this in mind that the 12th edition of the WSF aims to facilitate Canada and Quebec’s civil society’s contribution to global social struggles.
>> About the 2016 Montreal WSF Collective
>> Starting in May 2013, a collective made up of socially-involved citizens, as well as more than 140 organizations from syndical, indigenous, feminist, international solidarity, community, student and environmental arenas have worked together in order to build a strong organizational base for the 2016 World Social Forum in Montreal.
>> About World Social Forums
>> World Social Forums aim to create a space for the emergence of alternatives and debates, as well as for the convergence of struggles across the world. The first World Social Forum was held in Porto-Alegre, Brazil, in 2001 in reaction to the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
>> Raphaël Canet
>> Tunis : +216 55 25 55 16 (March 29, 30, 31
>> Montreal : 514 883-9594
>> Carminda Mac Lorin :
>> Tunis : +216 55 255 516 (March 29, 30, 31)
>> Montreal : 514 381-7090
>> info at fsm2016.org
>> fsm2016.org
>>  
>> _______________________________________________
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>> _______________________________________________
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> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ______________________________
> 
> Jai Sen
> 
> jai.sen at cacim.net / jai at openword.in
> 
> www.cacim.net / http://www.openword.in
> 
> 
> Now based in Ottawa, Canada (+1-613-282 2900), and New Delhi, India (+91-98189 11325)
> 
> RECENT PUBLICATIONS :
> 
> Jai Sen, ed, 2013 – The Movements of Movements : Struggles for Other Worlds, Part I. Volume 4 Part I in the Challenging Empires series. New Delhi : OpenWord.  Available @ http://www.into-ebooks.com/book/the_movements_of_movements/
> 
> FORTHCOMING PUBLICATIONS  :
> 
> Jai Sen and Peter Waterman, eds, forthcoming (2015) – The Movements of Movements : Struggles for Other Worlds, Part 2. Volume 4 Part II in the Challenging Empires series.  New Delhi : OpenWord
> 
> CHECK OUT CACIM @ www.cacim.net, OpenWord @ http://www.openword.in, and OpenSpaceForum @ www.openspaceforum.net
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> AND SUBSCRIBE TO WSFDiscuss, an open and unmoderated forum for the exchange of information and views on the experience, practice, and theory of social and political movement at any level (local, national, regional, and global), including the World Social Forum.  To subscribe, simply send an empty email to worldsocialforum-discuss-subscribe at openspaceforum.net
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______________________________

Jai Sen

jai.sen at cacim.net / jai at openword.in

www.cacim.net / http://www.openword.in

Now based in Ottawa, Canada (+1-613-282 2900), and New Delhi, India (+91-98189 11325)

RECENT PUBLICATIONS :

Jai Sen, ed, 2013 – The Movements of Movements : Struggles for Other Worlds, Part I. Volume 4 Part I in the Challenging Empires series. New Delhi : OpenWord.  Available @ http://www.into-ebooks.com/book/the_movements_of_movements/

FORTHCOMING PUBLICATIONS  :

Jai Sen and Peter Waterman, eds, forthcoming (2015) – The Movements of Movements : Struggles for Other Worlds, Part 2. Volume 4 Part II in the Challenging Empires series.  New Delhi : OpenWord

CHECK OUT CACIM @ www.cacim.net, OpenWord @ http://www.openword.in, and OpenSpaceForum @ www.openspaceforum.net

AND SUBSCRIBE TO WSFDiscuss, an open and unmoderated forum for the exchange of information and views on the experience, practice, and theory of social and political movement at any level (local, national, regional, and global), including the World Social Forum.  To subscribe, simply send an empty email to worldsocialforum-discuss-subscribe at openspaceforum.net


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