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Archive for January, 2011

Program Saturday 1/8 at FIU, Miami on NGOs

From Overthrowing the Profit System to Not for Profit
The rise of NGOs and the decline of mass movements

When: Saturday, January 8, 2011 3:00 PM

Where: Florida International University, room WUC 155
3000 N.E. 151st Street
North Miami FL 33181

The past forty years have seen an explosion in the growth of NGOs. The World Bank
estimates that nearly 15% of all overseas development aid is now channeled through
NGOs. At the same time, we have seen a precipitous decline in mass social movements.

One Stuggle South Florida is hosting a discussion on the rise of the NGO and the fall of mass movements. Our hope is to foster an inter-organizational dialogue to
raise awareness of the NGO trap and how together we can rebuild mass movements for justice, social change, and popular power.

Join us to help find a way forward.

I. Intro

A. Definition

B. Scope

II. NGOS as Agents of Capitalism

A. Enables capitalists to shield wealth from taxation

B. Gives capitalists another mechanism of control

C. Shifts goals from structural change to charity (part 1)

III. NGOs as Agents of the State

A. Anti-violence programs

B. Shifts social programs from state to NGOs

1. Workforce One

2. Faith Based Aid

IV. NGOs as Agents of Imperialism

A. Shifts goals from structural change to charity (part 2)

1. Haiti

2. Cultural programs

3. Micro-loans

4. Population control

B. Supports imperial agenda

1. Fundamentalist religious revivals

2. Save the women, i.e., brown women from brown men.

V. NGOs as Agents of Demobilization

A. Gives donors control of agenda

1. Civil Rights Movement


3. Changes focus from movement building to social work.

B. Professionalization of movement work

1. Changes oppressed from subject to object

2. Requires everything to be packaged at successes to continue funding, rather

than dropping failed strategies

C. Shifts goals from structural change to charity (part 3)

1. Better Policing, not community control

2. Conservation, not environmentalism

3. Job training not unions

D. NGO Problems

1. Scams: How to “Save the World” and make a profit

2. Exploitation of workers

VI. Conclusion

A. What is to be done?

Annoying Byproduct

“A US department of energy report warned on 15 December that, in the absence of mines such as this one, America risks losing control over the production of a host of technologies, from smart phones to smart bombs, electric car batteries to wind turbines, because of a virtual Chinese monopoly on the rare earth metals essential to their production.”

“Rare earth metals mine is key to US control over hi-tech future,” by Suzanne Goldenberg, Guardian UK, Sunday 26 December 2010

For the rest of the article, see http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/dec/26/rare-earth-metals-us

Less Scary

Token Habitat

From an article in National Parks Traveler: http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2011/01/group-urges-nps-director-jarvis-reject-orv-plan-big-cypress-national-preserve7428

“”A new survey of the Big Cypress National Preserve shows that the vascular flora consists of 145 families and 851 species. Of these, 72 are listed by the State of Florida as endangered or threatened plants, while many others are on the margins of their ranges. The survey also shows 158 species of exotic plants within the Preserve, some of which imperil native species by competing with them. Finally, we compare the flora of the Big Cypress National Preserve with those of the nearby Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve and the Everglades National Park. Although Big Cypress is less than half the size of Everglades National Park, it has 90% of the native species richness.”"