Coffee Not Capitalism!!!

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February 10, 2007 by cosmoakacitizensmith

The other day I was at a Coffee Not Capitalism demo here in snowy Cardiff. The idea came from the Coffee Not Bombs demo we had in Newport just before Christmas, which was in turn based on the concept of Food Not Bombs which …….

Anyhow, more of that later.

Basically, my guitar was in repairs. So I rung up Jay from Kilnaboy and sked if I could borrow his for the demo, which was happening the next day. No worries, he said.

So anyhow, whoke up the next day with the hangover from HELL. Late for the proceedings. Then I rung Jay who was in a pretty similar state…but in Splott, not round the corner where he normally is.

Several jump starts later he got a lift back with Amy and I got the guitar.

But then of course I had to haul the guitar and my equipment all the way down to Queen Street. With a hangover.

Got there in the nick of time. Jeff sorted out some of the technical problems with the amp, but then I proceeded to break a load of strings. And had a hissy fit.

Fortunately, Debi from Drunk Granny rose to the occasion and did some punked up noise, including a cover of Like A Virgin. Cool!

And then we all dipped off to a cafe and had a discussion about post-structuralism over a cappuccino. Ethical, of course.

These photos were once again taken by Clint. And here is an article from Gagged about the politics behind the demo and what happened in Newport in December!

Star-bucking the consumer trend: Coffee Not Bombs hits Newport!!

Armed with only Zapatista coffee, soya milk, sugar, a gas burner & a load of paper cups liberated from a nearby tourist attraction, South Wales anarchists took on the might of consumer capitalism in Newport town centre on Saturday 16 December 2006.

Sporting bad hangovers & an interesting line in black Santa hats (Bah Humbug! Save the Planet!), activists distributed free coffee, leaflets & issues of Gagged! to bemused passers-by, many of whom stopped for gratefully-received cuppa & a chat.

The action, which took place outside a local outlet of corporate coffee whores Starbucks, also featured live music (thankfully drowning out the Salvation Army Brass Band up the road), & a large group of moshing youths.

Coffee, after oil, is the second largest export in the world; with a turnover of about 10 billion dollars, Its production employs 25 million people in the southern hemisphere. While Starbucks enjoys record profits, its coffee farmers can’t even afford to adequately feed their children on the 2-50¢/lb they are paid for coffee that sells for at least $10/lb. The Zapatistas are a revolutionary anti-corporate social movement from Chiapas, Mexico, who are fighting for the autonomy of the indigenous population as a solution to their immense poverty. Their organic coffees raises money directly for the autonomous communities that produced it.

According to Credit Action, the total amount of UK personal debt has exceeded £1 trillion. With consumerism being used as a buy-off to stop us whinging about unpopular neo-colonial wars fought in our name, why not organise a Food/Coffee not Bombs demo of your own?

All it takes is a little bit of ingenuity & culinary nous. You can then bring the battle to your local high street, engage with the community & introduce people to a non-consumer take on their coffee break.
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