Monday, September 12, 2011

Day 1, Sept 22

Day 1

September 22, 12 pm

Sproul Plaza

Resistance at UC campuses and other schools in California has certainly diminished since the powerful events of the 2009-2010 school year – its strikes, its occupations, its stand-offs with police. Emboldened by this fact, the UC administration have begun a fresh round of assaults – piling on thousands of dollars of fees, laying off thousands of workers, and signaling that they intend to continue with more of the same over the coming year.

We need to regain the ground of 2009 and 2010. But we’ll need to do more than that if we want to begin to win. We need to surpass those occasional days, and bring the university to a grinding halt for as long as it takes. As one text from 2009 put it – “We need to push the university struggle to its limits.”

These are remarkable times. From Greece to Chile, from Britain to Spain, government austerity measures provoke some of the most profound militancy in over a generation. And in each one of these cases, students and student movements (which involve more than just students, of course) are central to the fight. We should take some inspiration and direction from these fights, but we should remember that students on their own can only do so much. We need more “outside agitators” rather than fewer of them.

September 22 is the first day of classes at the other UCs. Though we know that they won’t be able to organize anything yet, we picked this day in solidarity with them, in hopes that later on in the semester we can organize events on a cross-campus basis.

This is intended as the first of what we hope are many “days” this year. Let’s make it big!


  1. What we need is a return to the "occupy everything, demand nothing" model. The university cannot possibly give us what we want, and concessions to authority only weaken the vitality of the movement.

  2. "occupy everything, demand nothing" is one of the stupidest things i've ever heard. how about affordable education? if "university cannot possibly give us what we want" then start your own university. "the movement" shouldn't just be about being against everything.

  3. i think you kind of missed the point on the whole "university cannot possibly give us what we want." it doesn't matter what you want because no matter how much you cry, nobody cares. you won't get affordable education anyway and for people like me, who are poor but not poor enough for a free ride, there never will be. so as far as i'm concerned, fuck it. by all means whine and complain all you want and hope and pray that somebody gives a damn but i suggest you don't get in the way of those who are actually going to act and grab their reality by the balls.

  4. by "grab reality by the balls" do you mean lock yourself in a building with a bunch of your friends. it worked so well last time, why not try the same thing again?

  5. If the university cant give us what we want then why exactly are we fighting? ...a new university? Ok, good. How do we get there? In one fell swoop? No. A highly co-ordinated action where every major building at every UC is occupied - in which case we could really begin to control things and have great leverage - isn't possible in the immediate future either. So, in the meantime we should do what is necessary to get to that point, if that means some temporary capitulation, so be it. In other words; things don't start with the complete disintegration of the old university, rather, they end that way.

  6. More smug, snarky American privilege from the "do nothing" crowd. "How about affordable education"? How the hell do you think that's going to happen? More speeches and petitions?

    From 2 years ago, "With his state strapped and his legacy looming, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proposed on Wednesday to greatly reduce the amount of money California spends on its prisons and to funnel that sum to the state’s higher education system instead."

    Over $300 million in cuts to the UC restored. Why?

    “Those protests on the U.C. campuses were the tipping point,” the governor’s chief of staff, Susan Kennedy, said in an interview after the speech. “Our university system is going to get the support it deserves.”

    Meanwhile, all over the rest of the Chile, in Spain, in the UK, and recently in Greece, "300 university departments occupied by students. It is estimated that circa 300 departmental student assemblies have decided to occupy their departments. The majority of the universities in Greece are occupied by students protesting against the new reform bill. The new bill aims into the commercialisation and privatisation of higher education of the country...."

  7. It's about solidarity... Why is everyone arguing? This is exactly what the capitalists want, is to see us fractured. It's about UNITY, standing up, fighting the powers who seek to destroy a generation of thoughtful individuals. Let's work together, let's show them that despite our differing perspectives we believe in learning, and well fight for it.