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A thought about money

One thing that bothers me is how equavalizing money is as a form. (I know equivalizing is not a word. I’m a poet. Also I just got home from a long day at the job I do for money. I’m tired and can’t think of the right word. Also I probably don’t know the right word because way back when I went to college I didn’t do what I wanted to do which was read poetry and fiction and philosophy and, well, I didn’t know what “critical theory” was back then, but if I had known I would have wanted to read it and if I had read those things I would have the right word to use now, but no, at the time I was thinking, I am in deep shit if I can’t get a job after I graduate because how am I gonna pay back the student loans I took out to go to college. It’s sort of been downhill ever since.) What I’m trying to say is that money requires the same thing from everyone. Even at the Bay Area Public School, this gorgeous experiment in creating a space for people to learn about whatever they want, including how to make a world that is not dependent on money, in order for us to have a stable space, we have to pay money to rent that space. And so we have to set up a way to gather the same thing from all these different people: money in order to pay for that space. We do our gathering outside of the physical space of the school building or any of its satellite locations in cafes and people’s kitchens, but we have to gather it. Wouldn’t it be great if, instead of 50 people paying $20 a month to keep the schoolhouse open, we could ask 50 people to give … whatever else they wanted to give! Jars of garden flowers, bread, excellence in conjugation and declension, products of metallurgy, sung tones, astrology readings, sequences of movements, hugs, conversation. Oh, wait, we do that already. Everything I listed is something someone gives to the school. But we could do it so much more if we didn’t have to pay money.

— Melissa Mack, organizer and poet

— 1 month ago with 3 notes

Before the Roman Alphabet, (the writing system which I am at this moment typing in), there were other alphabets, and before those alphabets, no alphabets at all. Why am I, in this opening to an economy of 200 to 400 words I volunteered to write on the subject of Money, writing this?

Before Hebrew and some strange approximate trade language carried by seafaring semites from coast to coast across the vast wide mediterranea there was a book of split tongues variable symmetry measure whisper to yell let the navigator have all the information needed to get there

Because I claim to be a Poet, and in order to be a poet, I need to write poems. To write poems, I need a language. English is my mother tongue, the symbols of which comprise the Roman Alphabet, the language I was born into, taught to write, and speak.

they claimed stories like territory and to produce the poem they wrote poems rather than bellowed like vegetarians though most wrote meet a wish as it came true so they became imperialists the very language is the harshest boss master after math and before

Not only in the act of writing a poem, but in every act of writing, speaking, or thinking, the symbols of the Roman Alphabet are present. They are what I work with, or what work in me, when I sign my name on a check, or type an e-mail, or say hello to a friend.

failed holy only way to sin a cast mold imprint and scaling frail to immortality no small task too small for glory sought is torn from the same frayed cloth difference disintegrated fabric like who vents the oxygen is breathing
whether its in or out a lung is still

Medievally, I could be called a “Woman of Letters,” but in order to survive every day, before any question of identity, I need to eat, sleep, and have enough money to meet these needs.

now you are imagination words are not enough for you to ask for identity however form or variable is a signatory document with no enforcer the cost equals output or energetically not

The difficulty of writing about money is that the biologic is entangled with the symbolic. If you talk too much about the symbolic aspect of money, you could be accused of being insensitive to the pain of hunger, anxiety, and excruciating alienation that money begets.

five six seven eight nine ten eleven twelve thirteen fourteen fifteen sixteen seventeen eighteen nineteen twenty twenty one twenty two twenty three twenty four twenty why we have to eat is a limit function on thought itself the cruelest overlord scorched earth policy

Alternatively, if you do not attempt to investigate the symbolic functionality of money, you could be accused of conceding powerlessness before that which exerts power over you, resigned to thinking that money cannot be cognized, as if it was a language impossible to understand.

externally, irreverence for the authorities that circumnavigate your globe for colonial exploitation, resource extraction and personal enrichment is as significant a contribution to the cause of the the battle as the battle itself is a fundamentally unsolvable problem for anyone who participates in it

When people use the phrase, “Money talks,” they mean that wealth gives power and influence to those who possess it. Differing from this, the title of this introductory post is named this because I hope it can serve as a beginning of a conversation about how value exceeds itself, how value is created, is a necessary expansion of any conversation, doubling, sequences, how one without two is impossible, the feasible revision.

is not one

money is number
language had years
thousands of them
to accumulate
knowledge for
its loaned stake
a share of nature
scarcity wagered
source recompense
apologies after





— 2 months ago with 1 note
This month, the organizers of the Bay Area Public School wish to share their views on money and how our project attempts to relate to money. To kick off our Money Talk series is Michael Nicoloff.

There’s been plenty of talk in Bay Area Public School (BAPS) organizing meetings about how to talk more publicly about the BAPS’s relationship to money. Do we need a class or discussion group? A publication or report of some kind? A different kind of finance committee meeting? Any one of those has its merits, but for now I’m offering this humble and imperfect few-hundred words to get the ball rolling.

The BAPS’s statement of financial principles (which you can read on our “About” page) isn’t a bad place to start on these matters, but it’s one thing to read a statement and another to read about how it’s been applied in practice, and any debates and ambivalence in that application. That’s where the rubber meets the road, like they say, and so that’s what I’m going to talk about.

$ $ $

As should be clear from the financial statement, the basic principle the BAPS has worked under is that classes and events at the school should be free of charge and free of solicitation to donate. In this era where more and more of human existence is ruled by a financial logic, the BAPS is trying to create an oppositional pocket in which people can exercise their right to education without money and debt forming a backdrop. That’s the more utopian reasoning, anyway. On a more day-to-day level, it’s so that no one feels constrained against being in the space because of finances.

In practice that’s meant no passing the hat, no donation jar, and often no mention of what goes on behind the financial scenes to make the school run. And it’s not such a bad thing to feel like you can go to an indoor common space and not have to buy the coffee or meal that implicitly serves as your rent for that time and space.

Still, there’s a hard balance to strike between working to create a space less subject to the usual financial logic and collectively sticking our heads in the sand about what it takes for the school to stay alive. At times, it’s felt like the fact that work is being done, that rent and bills are being paid, has remained abstract to the point of invisibility.

The BAPS’s funding model is no doubt familiar to many readers: it’s based on the so-called Fab 50, in which 50 community members agree to pay $20 on a monthly basis (or in lump sums) to cover the school’s “living expenses.” For the people, by the people—all that good stuff. Yet between the name Fab 50 and the current silence on finances at public events, the reality is masked that the Fab 50 is really more like the Fab 23. Furthermore, it’s even less known that beneath that Fab 50 there’s a smaller group of “financial bottom-liners,” made up mostly of organizers, who can be called in if rent is due and funds are short.

It’s pretty awesome that, even with limited “advertising,” people have come out of the woodwork to ensure the school continues. But at the same time, skirting around financial discussions isn’t a good plan for the school’s continued existence or, just as important, for creating the level of transparency and community involvement that we all hope for. The fact that I’ve just lapsed here into nonprofit business-speak irritates me to no end, but this is just another part of why it’s important to talk more about this—we need different language, different models.

$ $ $

There are a lot more questions to ask and try to answer on this topic, but that’ll all come in good time. Okay, a few: why isn’t the BAPS seeking 501c3 nonprofit status? Why has it been deemed “okay” to have an online donation box but not a physical one in the space? Why have you sporadically seen merchandise being sold at events? Where does the BAPS stand on seeking grants?

These are the sorts of questions that I and others want to grapple with in this space. With this in mind, we’ll be posting writing on these topics about once a week for the next month or so, and regularly after that. I, for one, look forward to seeing what comes of it.

— Michael Nicoloff

— 3 months ago with 7 notes
Global Map of Surveillance and Privacy

Global Map of Surveillance and Privacy

— 5 months ago with 1 note
"…schools, more than any other institution, are nothing more than barracks, where the human mind is trained and manipulated in order to be subjected to the various social and mental phantoms, and thus rendered capable of continuing this system of exploitation and oppression of ours."
Max Baginski
— 5 months ago with 4 notes
class syllabus →


This class will look at readings, ephemera, & diagrams describing non-hierarchical ways that human beings have organized themselves. We will read, talk, and write during each class. We will not critique or workshop each others’ work, but rather use the class to generate material inspired…

(Source: )

— 5 months ago with 4 notes
Struggling to Win: Anarchists building popular power in Chile U.S. Speaking tour! Sat 8pm 2/22 

Struggling to Win: Anarchists building popular power in Chile U.S. Speaking tour! Sat 8pm 2/22 

— 5 months ago with 1 note
Chilean Anarchists’ US Speaking tour: this SAT. 8PM! (2/22)


BAPS Facebook event (click here)
U.S. tour website (click here)

8PM SATURDAY! Co-Presented by Bay Area Public SchoolSudo Room, and AK Press!

Chile has a long history of working class struggle in shanty towns, factories, mines, community organizations, and schools. In the 20 years after the US supported coup which overthrew Salvador Allende’s government, much of the organizing was done underground. However after the fall of the dictatorship in 1990, there was a new rise of mass popular organization in the country. This national tour brings three individuals involved in these struggles to talk about the lessons learned and to create solidarity across hemispheres. From January to the end of February, the speakers will be traveling throughout the country and we hope that you can spread the word and hear about the important work that is happening in Chile. Join us in welcoming them on Saturday, February 22!

— 5 months ago
first queer study event scheduled 2/22 @ 5pm




a free monthly queer study event
at the bay area public school
2141 Broadway/22nd, Oakland


FEB 22, 5pm - 8pm = Queer Phenomenology

in which K. Mooney will lead us in a discussion of Chapter One in Sarah Ahmed’s /Queer Phenomenology/ and then we will watch films curated by Erika Staiti.

— 6 months ago with 2 notes
Here is the full pdf of Juan Luiz Martinez’s La Nueva Novela.

Here is the full pdf of Juan Luiz Martinez’s La Nueva Novela.

— 6 months ago with 2 notes
Reading at 8pm Jan. 19th at 2141 Broadway !

Reading at 8pm Jan. 19th at 2141 Broadway !

(Source: heartsdesirereadingseries)

— 6 months ago with 1 note
"Jerome Rothenberg is a DNA spaceman, exploring the mammal caves of Now."

— Michael McClure

Eye of Witness Book Launch

Jerome Rothenberg
and Heriberto Yepez

Jan. 25th @ 8pm

2141 Broadway, Oakland

— 6 months ago