Slingshot Issue #106 Introduction

Slingshot is an independent radical newspaper published in Berkeley since 1988.

Is making Slingshot – or engaging with any alternative project – more like planting a garden, or more like harvesting one? In other words, do we do this because we’re hoping it will somehow change the world and make the future better, or are our motivations more about how this project changes our lives right now? Our many forms of resistance – protests, building workers collectives, getting off the grid – have to nourish our souls and give us opportunities for creativity and freedom while we’re doing them for them to be sustainable and worth continuing.

Making the paper isn’t our job nor are we forced to do it out of a sense of duty or obligation. Participating is one way we can spend our days that it is engaging and social. Actually, it’s a blast. A big part of its sustaining relevance is the way it helps weave webs of community – drawing different scenes and different types of people together in interesting and new ways. A world without bosses or consumers is a world where people do things not because of a separate payoff, but out of the inherent pleasure of the action itself. Throwing your life into the counter-culture by joining a collective or starting your own is not certain to save the planet, but it may save you from boredom and meaninglessness.

Moving into the summer season opens up possibilities for travel, fresh tomatoes, rowdy forest gatherings, lazy warm afternoons, swimming and meeting new friends. Despite the harsh events of the world – wars, ecological disasters, injustice and oppression – we can’t forget to enjoy what is still possible.

We had a moment of stress at a meeting a few days before going to press when articles on some important topical events didn’t materialize: anything about US military action in Libya, something on union busing in general and protests in Madison in particular, analysis about the revolts in North Africa and the Middle East. We wanted these articles but in the internet age, it often makes more sense to rely on electronic media to keep up on rapidly changing events. Our niche as an on-paper publication is arguably different.

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Some people have asked about our landlord’s bankruptcy – are we going to lose our space? The court process is continuing and it is still too early to know. And what about our lawsuit against the FBI for the police seizure of all our computers in 2008? Our lawyers and the government filed motions to end the case recently, but the judge is still considering them. And they say collective process is too slow to be “practical”. . .

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If you get multiple copies of the paper in the mail for free distro, please let us know if you move. The post office has started charging us $12.50 for each returned envelope!

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Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers, translators, distributors, etc. to make this paper. If you send something written, please be open to editing.

Editorial decisions are made by the Slingshot Collective but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collectives members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.

Thanks to the people who made this: Abhay, Alena, Anka, Bird, Brian, Dee, Eggplant, Heather, Jayson, Julia, Jesse, Kathryn, Kermit, Ramona, Samara, Sandy, Sunny, Thomas and all the authors and artists.

Slingshot New Volunteer Meeting

Volunteers interested in getting involved with Slingshot can come to the new volunteer meeting on Sunday, August 28, 2011 at 4 p.m. at the Long Haul in Berkeley (see below).

Article Deadline & Next Issue Date

Submit your articles for issue 107 by September 17, 2011 at 3 p.m.

Volume 1, Number 106, Circulation 19,000

Printed April 28, 2011

Slingshot Newspaper

A publication of Long Haul

Office: 3124 Shattuck Avenue

Mailing: PO Box 3051, Berkeley, CA 94703

Phone (510) 540-0751 •

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Circulation Information

Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income and anyone in the USA with a Slingshot Organizer, or $1 per issue or back issue. International $3 per issue. Outside the Bay Area we’ll mail you a free stack of copies if you give them out for free. Note: they come in 1 lb. packages – you can order 1 package or up to 6 (6 lbs) for free – let us know how many you want. In the Bay Area, pick up copies at Long Haul or Bound Together Books in SF.

Slingshot Back Issues

We’ll send you a random assortment of back issues of Slingshot for the cost of postage: Send $3 for 2 lbs. Free if you’re an infoshop or library. Also, our full-color coffee table book about People’s Park is free or by sliding scale donation: send $1 – $25 for a copy. PO Box 3051 Berkeley, CA 94703.