Friday, 10 August 2012

The Westcountry Mutineer - Forthcoming News for Anarchists, Activists and Radicals

This week it has been announced that a new paper is about to be launched, focussed on issues in the south-west that go unreported and a more radical perspective on bigger news stories. Although this blog, The Shittro, the BARF blog and others have done a good job of covering the region in recent times, this will be a physical paper written by a wider range of people, covering a bigger area and with a wider distribution - and will hopefully be food for thought for a new audience as well as covering the issues that those of us already involved in activism, anarchism or other radical groups would want to read. Further information and a guide for contributors, released by The Westcountry Mutineer, is below. 

What we believe

 Here at The Westcountry Mutineer, it’s not all about cider and muck-flinging. There are a few important principles that guide the paper – we see society as being divided into two basic classes, the working class and the ruling class. We believe that these classes cannot live in harmony, as the luxury and wealth of the ruling class is only gained through the exploitation of the working class. We believe that workers are entitled to the full value of what they produce. Politicians of whatever party only serve to protect the interests of their mates in big business. We believe that the working class should, and has the ability to, abolish oppressive institutions such as government and capitalism and run society on its own, without the interference of bosses, politicians or any other self-appointed ‘leaders’. We struggle for a world in which communities are run by the residents, workplaces run by the workers - a world without exploitation, prejudice, environmental devastation or class systems, in which resources are produced and shared equally and responsibly, not hoarded by a greedy few. Sound good to you? Then baby, you’re an anarchist!


If you think you've got what it takes to be a Mutineer contributor, then here's what we're after: we're not big on censorship, but the general theme of the newsletter is anti-state, anti-authoritarian, pro-grassroots change, pro-workers' movement, pro-animal rights, pro-gay rights, anti-sexist, pro-environment, anti-racist, anti-fascist, anti-militarist... Lots of 'ist's. If you're still with us, then content-wise: keep it brief, up-to-date, accessible to those who may not be as in the know as you, and check your typos and your facts (including links for further info as foot notes to your article is always a nice extra).

Interesting and humorous are both considered a plus point, if you can. The 'house-style' is that of the pun-obsessed tabloid, but don't let that constrain you. Try to keep profanities to a minimum, though we agree that they are, in moderation, sometimes both big and clever. Also, try not to be repetitive in your choice of phrasing, and we encourage the use of commas and full stops where appropriate. And go on, give it a catchy heading! The word limit is 350 words, which many people ignore – much to the despair of the editor at 3am deadline day. So give a thought to that poor S.O.B. when you're trundling out your treatise on the finer points of the rights of man. Piccies from events in your neck of the woods are also gratefully received.

Whilst we try to cover important national and international news, we prefer to aim for a local focus for our news  – stories from the deepest, darkest corners of the Westcountry are best. Radical interpretations of local news stories are good, as well as news that other sources may downplay or miss entirely. If you’ve got any dirt on a local boss, politician, copper or any other form of slime, this is the place to publish it. The more of the West Country we can cover, the better, and that depends on you, so grab yer quill and let the rest of us know what’s happening in your manor.

As well as informative news reports or analyses, we also aim to have around one or two 'Theory Corner' and local radical history pieces per issue, and though it's non-standard for us, possible other content could include: spoof news, book/film/gig reviews, images, cartoon strips, and – at an extreme push – poetry. Fiction would be pushing it. If you're not up for doing the writing, then please send us any links, story leads, events or campaigns you want plugged, or other comments.

We reserve the right to edit contributions before publishing, or to not publish contributions at all, but, in honesty, would be very reluctant to, as we want to feature as many different voices and perspectives as possible (at least within the newsletter themes outlined above and below), and editing is likely to be fairly hands-off, just so that we don't interfere or misrepresent what we view as the original author's intent. That being said, we do have a few ‘don’ts’. These are:

1. Dickheads they may be, but the ruling elites are not lizards! No conspiracy theories please.

2. We love the environment, but we also love people, our warm offices and ‘Home and Away’, so no population control or primitivist content will be published.

3. Obviously all racist, anti-immigrant, anti-worker, anti-gay, sexist, pro-boss or pro-corporate submissions will be binned and spat on (then wiped dry and recycled).

Happy scribbling!
Peace (and class war)

Contact the Westcountry Mutineer:

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