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Let’s Make This Wasteland Bloom

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Are you fighting back against oppression and exploitation that harm you in your daily life? Do you participate in any project building alternatives for collective survival and healing? Are you done trusting in politicians, political parties, rich people, or any of the dominant institutions to make things better for us? Then we’ve got something to talk about! Let’s Make This Wasteland Bloom! is shaking things up in Cleveland for the third time running. The first gathering, in the spring of 2023, was an abundant introduction, like a potluck where we all shared about our needs, our projects, and our struggles, and built on pre-existing connections to help us grow closer, and to help newer people get involved. In the second gathering, fall of 2023, we went into more depth on different issues where we are struggling for our survival, dignity, health, and mutual aid, with discussions, skill shares, and brainstorming sessions. This time, on April 6th, we will follow a thread that has been present at both of the previous gatherings, but that we have not yet been able to explore in depth. With an all-day strategy game, role-playing as ourselves, we will look at the best possible future for our movements in the Cleveland area over the next 3 years. The purpose of this imaginative exercise is manifold • To identify actions we can take that will put our movements in a better position • To find out how our actions would affect other people in movement, and figure out ways we can make each other stronger rather than working at cross purposes • To discover what resources we can share and what infrastructures we all need • To acknowledge the complex reality that we have to live under capitalism, without pretending that we can make the revolution profitable ◦ as well as the reality that we may have to rely on non-profits for resources sometimes, but remembering that the non-profit industry was created to police and weaken our struggles • To learn how to practice strategy-from-below, in which we identify our own unique needs, positions, and strengths in a network of solidarity ◦ using decentralized strategy, we can move like a swarm, which is a form of collective intelligence that centralized, hierarchical organizations have the hardest time of understanding, surveilling, and pacifying ◦ through decentralized strategy, we can take action instead of passively following the directions this society pushes us in and instead of waiting for permission from a centralizing organization or party • To hone our ability to imagine different futures, which is one of the most important capacities to make revolution possible The idea of this gathering is not to commit to an actual plan, but to practice collective imagination and decentralized strategy. So much of capitalist production these days is designed to give us predigested imaginaries so we never have to use our imaginations anymore. And none of the futures they imagine for us are empowering. With our own imaginations atrophied, we are stuck in the futures they design. Come spend the day with us so we can imagine together how to break out of this prison world, abolish all structures of oppression, and create a future of abundance and healing. We’ll have lunch and a comfortable, accessible space. Bring friends and family! And let us know as well in advance if you’ll need childcare, so we can have adequate time to arrange
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