AndrewNFlood's blog

Detroit meeting and interview

Ruined factory in DetroitDetroit is a city of legends for the left arising from the level of mass worker militancy there during the 1960's and 1970's.  But it is also a city legendary for its decay in the years since and the anti-social crime that accompanies urban decay.  Some months before I arrived I'd done one of the very first meetings of the tour just a km away across the river in the Canadian city of Windsor and been told all sorts of horror stories by the four people who had crossed the border from Detroit for this meeting.  As I looked across the river the next morning and wondered how two cities so close together could be so different I'd not guessed I'd be in Detroit just a few months later.

At Cleveland C-Space

C spaceI was lucky to get a lift from Kent down to Cleveland for my next engagement. Cleveland is another rust belt city that has seen its population drop in half since the 1950's.  It was so industrial that in 1969 the  Cuyahoga River famously went on fire such was the volume of pollutants in it.  On December 15, 1978 it became the first American city since the great depression to default on its loans and became know as  "the mistake on the lake." Today the economy is still clearly struggling, a fact given away by the hope placed in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame located there.

Kent State University

Most of the second leg of the rust belt stops city stops had been put together by either NEFAC members or anarchists who I knew already.  The one exception was Kent, Ohio.  Now I'd have known nothing about Ohio at all before the tour but when I got an email from the Kent Anti-Racist Action chapter offering to host a talk I recognised 'Kent State University' as the site of the massacre on May 4th 1970 when four people were killed when the National Guard fired into an anti-war demonstration.

Pittsburgh at the Thomas Merton Center

Thomas Merton centre As part of the anarchism in Ireland speaking tour I spoke at the Thomas Merton Center in Pittsburgh April 2008. While in the city I stayed with and met with Pittsburgh anarchists and checked out some of the radical left and union history of Pittsburgh.

With the CTC in Atlanta

Atlanta is one of the major historic cities of the south but my first glimpse of it on Greyhound was of skyscrapers with blacked out windows that looked like missing teeth.  It turned out two tornado's had run through the city center a day or two previously.  The modern city is bit with some 6 million people living in the metropolitan area and at least the areas I saw had no resemblance to Gone with the Wind.

Winter Soldier in Gainesville Florida

CMC Gainsville The curse of the clashing meetings caught up with me again in Gainesville when my talk ended up as being just before the start of a 'Winter Soldier' hearing in another part of town. Despite this we got around 25 people along which was good for a town of 90,000.  

Welcome to Anarcho and Aileen - about this site

As people who have been visiting this site to follow the tour progress may have noticed as well as my material we now have articles from Anarcho and from AileenOCarroll. My basic intention of the site is for it to become an archive and source for/of anarchist writers whose articles I think are politically useful.

By the gulf in Sarasota

Ceaser in Sarasota, FloridaWhen I arrived in Florida and started working out how I was going to get around I realised the trip from Lake Worth to Sarasota which had looked like it should be simple was going to prove difficult. There was no Greyhound stop in Lake Worth so to get to the 'All Power to the Imagination' conference in Sarasota it looked like I'd have to catch a very early morning Tri-Rail to Fort Lauerdale and walk a couple of km there to the Greyhound station to catch what would be a day long bus sequence to Sarasota. So in both Miami and Lake Worth I'd been trying to find anyone else heading for the conference.

Lake Worth report

By the beach in Lake Worth FloridaLake Worth in Florida was one of the very few places on the US tour I could reasonably get to by train.  It's a smallish sea side town a couple of hours up the coast from Miami and just south of Palm beach. The population is around 35,000 and the town is split from the ocean by the Lagoon which gives it its name.  It's actually named after an American general who led one of the campaigns against the Seminole, a comple nationa comprised on a number of native america groups, escaped (black) slaves and (white) indentured servants.  I'm going to mention them in more details in my Gainesville blog update.    

Outdoors In Miami

Florida University Department Labor Studies event 2008On the last day of March 2008 I crossed the border from Canada to the US on a freezing early spring day and boarded a plane at Buffalo.  A few hours late I emerged into the +30c temperatures of Miami.  This was the start of the final and longest phase of my speaking tour which was to take my through Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota, Washington, Oregon and California. Two years and one day have passed since the Miami meeting and its time to update that blog with what I can recall.  I'm leaving the original blog untouched at the end of this update as it was one of the few written at the time with any substance.

  


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