tom9351 on Wed, 31 May 2000 02:42:30 +0200 (CEST)

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[Nettime-bold] Bologna - No OECD: Small global enterprise vs. neo-liberalism

We call on all kinds of medium-scale, small, even individual firms and businesses to subscribe to the following declaration. They may be multimedia centers, social service providers, arts and crafts workshops, publishing houses, co-ops, Ltd.'s, joint-stock companies etc.
For further info on the OECD [Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development] summit in Bologna, you can see <>, though there isn't much stuff in English.
To be in Bologna in those days (June 12-15) is not necessary, we expect companies from as many countries as possible to join us in spirit.
The deadline for the subscription is June 6th. Please forward the declaration to all those it may concern. Each time a new company subscribes, please send the updated copy to

Small global enterprise vs. neo-liberalism

Bologna, Italy. During the 2nd week of June the OECD [Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development] will hold a summit conference on small and medium-scale businesses in the age of globalization.
We have set up small and medium-scale enterprises. We experience the processes and results of global production every day.
In spite of the worn-out rhetoric about innovation and globalization, this summit does not provide for the existence of innovative, "atypical" entrepreneurs, because the only companies who are represented by such bodies as OECD (or WTO, for that matter) are the ones founded on exploitation and/or the plunder of public funds and resources.

What does "global enterprise" mean?
To some, it means the opportunity for enormous profits: in the poorest areas of the world it is possible to exploit wo/men and children for more than twelve hours a day, for ridiculous wages, usually less than fifty dollars per month.
It means thirteen-year old girls locked in sweatshops, with neither emergency exits nor fire extinguishers. It happened in Shenzhen, where 83 under-age workers were burned alive.
It means total unconcern for people's safety, like in Bhopal, India, where Union Carbide gassed the whole city, killing 500 people and blinding thousands.
It means unlimited access to public sunk funds, in order to produce anti-social commodities, and then criticize state/government control when it's time to pay taxes (e.g. FIAT, which the Italian state has propped up for more than fifty years).

To us, global enterprise is the opposite:
it is an adventure of mind and action, to produce goods, information and services that make the environment liveable, fill the infosphere with intelligence, turn our lives for the better.
It is the creation of a global network to escape both the dictatorship of finance and the power of state mafias.
The only real innovation is produced by free entrepreneurs of this kind, for they are not idolaters, they do not worship any state godfather-like patronage system, nor do they surrender to corporate neo-liberal obsession.

For this reason, in the days of the OECD summit, we will side with free people, not with free trade.
We will fight to turn globalization into an egalitarian process, so that all workers of the world can stick up for their rights, every man and woman has freedom of movement and does not suffer exclusion, and the products of collective knowledge enter the public domain and become accessible to everyone.

1) Wu Ming (factory of literary design and multimedia productions), Bologna.
2) Coop. Soc. Grado 16 (education, research and social intervention), Bologna