University of Toronto Teaching Assistants' strike; request for assistance [fwd]

kelley oudies at
Wed Jan 26 08:37:33 PST 2000

dream date ken writes:

>I'll recommend the idea. Likely it will float down the same tube as my
>the administration day."

well, you know, i did one of my research projects on this topic -- or rather i did it on political action/social movement/citizenship stuff and then happened upon this war taking place among participants over tactics. it was really splitting up the solidarity of those involved. related it to the identity politics/performative politics debates. at any rate, i agree that a performative politics is more often than not useless and does render you laughable in the media and the eyes of whoever you're trying to influence. but it sounds to me like you guys are up against the wall and have nothing to lose. you're going to get fired. they're going to make it into a spectacle no matter what you do. so give them one. and the first thing people in pr will tell you: even the worst sort of press coverage don't hurt. it may feel like it at the time, though. you need the media right now because the only way the admin is going to start smarting is when Big Important People start shaming them and that means you've got to get attention.

i wish i could figure out how to round up a massive shipment of cowboy hats your way because this would actually be hilarious, building on what dd said. that guy *will* be made the scapegoat and if everyone just wore cowboy hats around and went about their business as if nothing was happening. just a presence, you know? that wouldn't be quite the spectacle that i'd initially put forth but whatever.

i see a festival as a bit different than the brown eyed drive by en masse. the brown eyed drive by is a signal of anger and debasement of the Other. the celebration on the other hand is like a flame that says "i can't even take this seriously anymore. you try to kill us; we're going to live, laugh, and love. carpe fuckem. a true *fucking* festival except symbolic unless you can wrangle up some good folks to have a roll in the snow, figuratively speaking of course.

no more of the pathetic singing of union songs and beatles songs. this is pathetic. yeah you feel self righteous and nostalgize a solidaristic past.

carpe fuck that. that has been tossed to the recycling bin of history. it is made into a spectacle and rather easily so. a festival, otoh, will simply confuse the hell out of everyone involved. as would the dignified, business as usual cowboy hat thing where you just do normal typical things.

no protesting. no gathering. no hissing at admin freaks. cowboy hat wearing students returning library books. roaming the halls. "accidentally" walking into classrooms, "oops". picking up forms from offices. getting lunch. etc.

yeah, i know, impossible to organize.

whathefuckever. i am no longer naive ken.


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