Thursday, 17 April 2008

Ruth Kelly and 2.5 % biofuels travesty!

On 15th April on biofuels day Rhythms of Resistance joined a group activists
who went to visit Ruth Kelly's constituency office in Bolton.
Protestors held banners saying "hello 2.5% biofuels, goodbye planet earth"
Rhythms of Resistance Manchester played along to chants of 'food for people
not for cars.' Local people were leafleted and informed about their local MP's
collusion with the biofuels greenwash and it's links with deforestation, the
rise in food prices and the displacement of indigenous people's from their land.
Channel M Manchester covered the story and spoke to a sambista dressed as an orangutan forced to leave his home in the Indonesian rainforest.


No Borders, No Nations, Freedom of Movement for ALL!

On Saturday evening, up to 200 squatters and No Borders activists held an
unauthorised demonstration in the city centre. Accompanied by Rhythms of Resistance
and two soundsystems mounted on bike trailers, they marched from Victoria
Station into the Northern Quarter, along Market Street and Kings Street,
through Spinningfields into Castlefield.

The demonstration highlighted the ridiculousness of hundreds of houses
standing empty, while many of us face extortionate rents, mortgage
repayments or eviction threats. A participant said: “It was about time
that someone protested about the invisible borders that divide the city
into rich and poor”.

At the end of the march in Castlefields, the protesters succeeded in
taking symbolic action against the redevelopment of the area. As they
arrived at the old Jackson’s Wharf pub, they entered the abandoned
building and brought it back to life for a couple of hours of celebration.

This event in Manchester coincided with dozens of building occupations,
protests and street parties across Europe, in cities as diverse as London,
Amsterdam, Vienna and Prague. Worldwide, tens of thousands attended.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Fossil Fools Parade

Manchester's Fossil Fools got up to all sorts of tricks today, visiting some of their idols in the city centre... unfortunately in our efforts to congratulate the best fossil fools a few mishaps occurred...
Some clowns got stuck in the revolving doors at RBS and a human pipeline was escorted from the city centre building by security. Some members of the parade got confused and chalked messages on the pavements, and people trying to escape the beating of drums ran to hide in the flight centre while the samba band, who really had no idea, blocked the entrance! Some policemen came along looking for Spartacus but couldn't find him anywhere.

This was a wonderful day where fossil fools in all their many guises could come together, from old men (we think?!!), to young dinosaurs, in shades, masks, facepaints and suits to worship at the alter of commercial climate denial. To encourage people to consider whether or not they too may be fossil fools there were free vegan cakes, and leaflets with guidance about making Manchester a cleaner city (another little slip up).

On a positive note banners reading 'OIL,GAS and COAL the jokes on US! Happy Fossil Fools Day! were hung on the walls of RBS, out of respect for their hard work contributing to climate chaos. Placards saying 'Mr.T says "I pity the fuel" were waved. The parade ended triumphantly outside Manchester Town Hall to recognise the vital role Manchester City Council play in the area, damaging the climate every day. Just before the end a charming man did a short but inspiring solo on the spoons.

Brussels Agrofuels Invasion

A member of Rhythms Manchester travelled to Belgium to
join in an international action against biofuels. Activists
blockaded the doors of the International Biofuels Conference
and a large group of Sambistas drummed loudly to cause a
disruption. This action cast a large shadow over the latest
greenwash publicity stunt.

Stop the War Demo March

Members of Rhythms of Resistance Manchester joined a large
UK band at the national demonstrations against the war
in Iraq and Afganistan which marked five years of the conflict.

Saturday, 26 January 2008

Raising Awareness about Bio-Fuels

As part of a week of local actions against Bio-fuels Rhythms of Resistance Manchester played Samba and gave out leaflets outside Tesco on Upper Brook Street, around rush hour, on the 25th January. The band wanted to raise awareness about the issue of Bio-fuels and the consequences of large scale cultivation by companies such as Tescos.

They played for an hour and gave out about 80 leaflets. A banner saying 'Big business + Bio-fuels = DISASTER' was displayed along with a placard with 'The true cost of Bio-fuel - rainforest deforestation, food shortages, increased food prices, global warming, human rights abuses'

The event aimed to raise awareness about this issue among regular drivers and other members of the public. Leaflets contained information from about bio-fuels and Tesco's involvement, as well as ways people can get involved in actions and campaigns against agro-fuel investors and refineries.

People were receptive and interested. Local kids came and danced nearby. A man in a full balaclava came up to express his full support for the issue and ask the band to stop so people could hear their televisions! He looked a bit disappointed when they told him they'd already finished! ; )

After this RORM joined in this months Critical Mass.

Thursday, 24 January 2008

Tesco Demo at Whitworth Art Gallery

Rhythms of Resistance Manchester joined campaigners from Keep Chorlton Interesting and Manchester Uni Campaigns Collective to protest against Tesco. The groups gathered outside Whitworth Art Gallery for the arrival of Tesco boss Terry Leahy, who was attending a university meeting at the art gallery.

The band played as the ground was washed green by the Campaigns Collective, dressed in white overall and wielding buckets of 'green-wash'. They object to their universities links with Tesco, which has invested £25 million into a Sustainable Consumption Institue at Manchester Univesity.

The Keep Chorlton Interesting group, holding placards saying 'More Sameness' and 'Make Chorlton Bland', waited to present Terry Leahy with a 'golden cork in the ear' award, to highlight their feeling that Tesco is ignoring the concerns of the local community by continuing its attemps to build a Tesco in Chorlton. They were unable to present their award as Leahy avoided walking past the protestors by sneaking into the building through a side entrance.