NATURA URBANA | THE BRACHEN OF BERLIN

NATURA URBANA | THE BRACHEN OF BERLIN tells the post-war history of Berlin through its plants.

Glasgow Brachen
When I had time to do City Strolls, visiting the Glasgow bracken was a favourite. Unfortunately we do not have the same respect and love of the bracken as the Berliner. The 70s adventure playgrounds, environments and happenings, pop up theatres, had its time in the city. But big brother council and its ubiquitous red glaze soon covered up the bracken and sanitise the land long before it was needed for development parcels. I was never surprised that each time we did a talk on Scotland’s Common Good Fund, at the Electron Club or elsewhere, at least one Berliner would turn up for each occasion. And very impressed they were, that our Common Good Fund existed, along with its uniqueness. I guess it would take a Berliner, to appreciate, who still have the sense and scope of what the brachen and the commons represents and has to offer.

We also had our own Landschaftspark Duisburg-Nord potential, but the Philistines-that-be down at the council, could not wait to be rid of ever last remanent of our innovative, industrial and engineering past in order to swathe the landscape in concrete boxes. Who knows to what mental damage the cleansing, both social and environmental of the city has done to its citizens. Soon there will be no place to be lost in, to find, to imagine. No nooks and crannies to offer respite from the bland. No city strolls because there will be no place to go or discover only generic landscape.

“Still Game For The Valley” campaign

The place known as the valley in Maryhill was an area of council housing that was demolished and lay vacant for many years. At present it serves as a dynamic open space with an excellent views all round. The council have now decided, without consultation to sell it off for private development. We believe the site should be used for affordable social housing of which the city is badly in need off. This privatisation is part of a process being carried out all over the city, and accelerated during a pandemic in the rush to push these kinds of developments through. The “Still Game For The Valley” campaign was set up by Living Rent to challenge this proposal and to halt this sale of public land till proper consultation, and alternative plans can be heard.

More details an be found on Still Game For The Valley Facebook page. The following statements are from the recent vigil in the valley

Living Rent – Join today – livingrent.org

James tells hist story of living in The Valley.

Zen Buddhist monk and celebrated author Dogo Sensei tells his story of growing up in the community and his return to Maryhill after years living abroad, and what this development means for him.

Emma tells her story of living in The Valley.

Calls for unity

Keiran O’Neill Labour and coop candidate speaking at “Still game for the Valley” vigil

LIVING RENT – STILL GAME FOR THE VALLEY – THE LAND GRAB (complete video)

Valley chant. Stop the sale chant it loud!

The Sleeping Giants of Potential Political Power.

 

The 1970s Neoliberal’s unleashed growth, promised a reduction in the gap between rich and poor. The little boats would rise in the tide with the bigger boats. (Thatcher) It would widen democracy, destroy violent and vicious nationalism–a new renaissance. We are now in the most negative nationalist period since the 1930s with all the danger that goes with it. Our shores are littered with pollution and the wreckage of little boats that did not rise in the tide with the big boats but were destroyed in the wake of the ever rising tide of neoliberalism. (Analysis news) Continue reading

Reawakening the intellectual life of the working classes

There are lots of people in the world with a whole variety of needs. Some are reasonable some are exotic some are crazy some are just stupid. How should anybody judge the opinions and actions of others? What causes people to do things that are abhorrent to others for the good of themselves? What is it some people need so badly that they will do almost anything to get it. These are the big mysteries that take up much, of many peoples time and lives. They ask. Why is the world so fucked-up for me when I haven’t done anything? Continue reading

CityStrolls-REPLAY: Militarising the police

CityStrolls-REPLAY: How many ambulances and paramedics are available during a pandemic, masks, ventilators, beds, psychiatrists, workers? Compared with. How many policemen can turn up instantly. How many cops does it take to kettle some peaceful protesters, while allowing other drunk nutters to run riot. The “emergency services” have become the “police services”. If the efficiency of military tactics shown in West George Street where applied to human rights, the health services, mental health, social housing there would be no reasons to see militarised swat teams on our streets. If we don’t become part of the solution – Get used to it. As the UK is using the same US approach to militarising the police and have been, at least over the last ten or fifteen years.

CityStrolls-REPLAY: Glasgows finest

CityStrolls-REPLAY: Glasgows finest turn out to protect the merchants of death, mounted cops the lot. Our council present an “arms fair” in a building that is part of the cities Common Good Fund. While those who suffer (the fall out of the weapons and bombs they deal in) who make it to this country – suffer even more through the ignorance and indifference of our administrators who would think this was ok and what happens and they are not be responsible for any of it.

 

PREGNANT PAUSE

— Remarks on the Corona Crisis —

 

We were already living in a general global crisis, but most people were only vaguely aware of it since it was manifested in a confusing array of particular crises — social, political, economic, environmental. Climate change is the most momentous of these crises, but it is so complicated and so gradual that it has been easy for most people to ignore it.

The corona crisis has been sudden, undeniable, and inescapable. It is also taking place in an unprecedented context.

If this crisis had taken place fifty or sixty years ago, we would have been totally at the mercy of the mass media, reading about it in newspapers or magazines or sitting in front of a radio or television passively absorbing whatever instructions and reassurances were broadcast by politicians or newscasters, with scarcely any opportunity to respond except perhaps to write a letter to the editor and hope that it got printed. Back then, governments could get away with things like the Gulf of Tonkin incident because it was months or years before the truth eventually got out. Continue reading