The Grassroots Declaration of Independence

Banksy, Falling Trolley

[The following manifesto proposal, my 300th post on this blog, is also a response to Paul Street at ZNet, 4/7/2012:
‘This latest blistering 4th of July, We the People would do well to get to work drafting and acting on a new Declaration of Independence – one that expresses our deep enmity to the nation’s unelected and interrelated dictatorships of capital, empire, and eco-cide. This is our pass-fail moment. We’ve got a generation at most to clean up this hot stinking plutocratic mess and to create a world turned upside down and worth inheriting from a capitalist elite that has nothing left to offer humanity but en ever-deepening descent into death and destruction.’]


In recognition of the fact that:

our economic system & its form of development is leading to the wholesale destruction of the planet’s life-support systems & atmosphere, the basis of human civilization

our economic system is responsible for destroying the lives & livelihoods of millions of small farmers, exploited workers & poor people throughout the world

our economic system & its technologies are responsible for increasingly creating new forms of alienation, dis-ease & poverty in over-developed countries: time poverty, working poverty, unemployment or underpaid & precarious employment, the stress & fragmentation of families & communities, the corporatization of education, the universalization of marketing & commodification, anxiety, depression, cancer & obesity epidemics

our economic system needs & encourages imperial resource wars & geostrategic conflict which flout international law & cause death & suffering to millions of innocent men, women & children & provoke terrorist backlash

our economic system is based on endless growth of production, consumption & profits for corporate shareholders & financial speculators (who make up no more than 1% of the population) & not for the basic needs of the overwhelming majority of the world’s population or the needs of our life-support ecosystems

our increasingly authoritarian & repressive political system is a willing supporter & expression of this economic system that is destroying the planet & the future for our children & grandchildren

we, the undersigned, hereby declare that:

we regard the destructive investments & policies pursued by the corporate & political elites to be threatening our survival & as being pursued against our wishes & without our democratic consent

we hereby withdraw our democratic consent from all our corporate & political leaders except those who share our principles & work for the devolution of economic & political decision-making power to the grassroots, a more equitable distribution of wealth & resources within & between nations & the rapid phasing out of all ecocidal or ecologically unsustainable activities & technologies

we will individually & collectively pursue all possible non-violent means of withdrawing our energy, belief, interest, legitimacy, votes, time, work & money from this economic & political system to whatever extent is currently individually & collectively possible

we will begin to seek ways & means of living more simply & collectively organizing the fulfilling of the majority of our own needs on a local & regional level

we will begin the building of a truly democratic economy & grassroots politics from below which nurtures people & nature & works sustainably within the constraints, carrying capacities & opportunities of our local & global ecosystems

we will support the non-violent occupation of all core institutions & workplaces with a view to their transformation into democratic, self-managed institutions & cooperatives

we will begin to seek ways & means of linking up with, learning from, sharing resources & supporting all democratic grassroots initiatives in the world which share all or most of these principles

Not In Our Names! One Equitable, Self-Managed World Or None! Occupy Everything!

~ by Peter Lach-Newinsky on July 17, 2012.

One Response to “The Grassroots Declaration of Independence”

  1. Hi Peter,

    I would sign it, of course. The idea of declaring a withdraw of consent RE our “democratic” process is great. I am tired of them “beating the people with the people’s stick”. This paragraph stood out for me:

    “we will individually & collectively pursue all possible non-violent means of withdrawing our energy, belief, interest, legitimacy, votes, time, work & money from this economic & political system to whatever extent is currently individually & collectively possible”

    What is possible? I’d like to have more handle on the scope of it. I am feeling a little lost at sea right now. There is a kind of “learned helplessness” going on, to borrow a term from psychology. A lot of this system’s “propaganda bandwidth” goes into creating the sense that disconnecting from it is impossible. I’m aware of not really belonging to any sort of alternative community. I can’t really turn to friends or family or teachers for guidance on how to disconnect, as we all seem to be “plugged in” together. Will we all need to disconnect together? Or can individuals do a lot just as individuals?

    I should start a thread over at IOPS perhaps…

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