Letters

Posted on February 4, 2011

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Various letters The Paper received and discussions that people started in response to the call for a first editorial meeting.

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The Paper is an interesting idea, but not without problems in my view. What is the basis for this paper, for example? Has it come out of a defined group or movement, like being agreed upon at a London Student Assembly (or produced by a political group with a certain aim)? There are a lot of papers around produced by various groups, some think these papers are vital, others are an anachronistic blast from the past. From your email I take it that this will be an intellectual paper for the movement rather than one aimed at the public/students generally. Is that right? I think there we should have a serious discussion about the need for an in-movement paper, what people want to do web wise, how will it be paid for, how distributed etc. There are a lot of people with blogs, and there is a kind of free-for-all out there of ideas, and responses to them already. I also feel that more academic debate is very important, but it must be relevant and immediate to our struggle (as a lot I have read online has not been, and in fact would bamboozle and put people off activism). Perhaps a paper acting as a monthly journal would be a good idea, otherwise I think a more regular paper should also include news articles, not just news comment. I think it will take a lot of effort to produce a paper regularly (is it to be free?). I am not saying it is impossible. I do think more writings about the movement and how to work better is a good thing, however these are disseminated. 

Sean Rillo Raczka / Birbeck SU chair

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I share some of Sean’s concerns and these should be clarified in more detail and revisited at Monday’s meeting. I know that at LSE many in the occupation, were interested in a proper forum for larger debates and discussion. I don’t think that there is an independent blog/paper/etc that is not tied to specific group/parties to which people feel they can contribute. It is encouraging that The Paper will be free, and I don’t know what the Centre for Ethics and Politics is exactly, but if the funding is truly without strings, this makes the possibilities of this project really exciting.

Ashok Kumar / LSE sabbatical, LSE occupation, EAN NEC
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We welcome The Paper– a good initiative in these difficult yet exciting times. Over a period of thirty or forty years, the university student has been reduced in circumstances and privilege so as to now be quite a bit closer to the proletarianized worker, themselves increasingly digitized as precarious labour, data input or call sector workers or shopping till operators. This trajectory of concurrence occurring while at the upper echelons an opposite pattern ensures the non-convergence of previously highly-privileged professionals with the wealthy and rich in business. Indeed, the Professors look set to become little more than petty bourgeois shopkeepers, and their departments more like merchandise stores, while University heads, and no doubt in other service sectors the upper managements as well, become robber barons paid and six figure sums with benefits. We are not talking social class here, since the quality of the wine is still a marker, but we are talking class formation nonetheless. A glass has been raised to your success. Lal Salaam.

Theolonius Wiesengrund / University for Strategic Optimism

Posted in: 1. Ed Minus One