Anticapitalist Resistance Maps Out a Radical Ecosocialist Strategy at the 2024 Conference

Anti*capitalist Resistance (ACR), writes Simon Pearson, is preparing for its annual conference with a series of bulletins outlining a radical ecosocialist strategy and key priorities for the coming period.


As Anti*capitalist Resistance (ACR) prepares for its upcoming annual conference recently released conference bulletins offers a comprehensive look at the organisation’s political analysis, strategic vision, and key priorities for the coming period. The conference will take place on June 1-2 as a hybrid event, with its physical part in London.

Draft Ecosocialist Manifesto: A Case for Revolutionary Transformation

The centrepiece of the first bulletin is the draft Ecosocialist Manifesto, a sweeping indictment of capitalism’s inherent drive towards environmental destruction and a clarion call for a revolutionary transformation of society along ecological and socialist lines.

The manifesto argues that the profit-driven growth imperative at the heart of capitalism is fundamentally incompatible with sustainability and a stable climate. It contends that market-based mechanisms and technological fixes, while not entirely without merit, are woefully insufficient to resolve the ecological crisis. Instead, it makes the case for a democratically planned economy oriented around production for human need rather than private accumulation.

Key planks of the ecosocialist platform

Key planks of the ecosocialist platform put forward in the manifesto include:

  • Decommodification of essential goods and services like housing, healthcare, education, energy, food, and transportation
  • Rapid transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources like wind and solar
  • Socialising the “commanding heights” of the economy under worker and community control
  • Reorganising production and consumption around the principle of sufficiency and improving quality of life rather than maximising GDP growth
  • A “just transition” for workers and communities currently dependent on extractive and polluting industries
  • Scaling down resource throughput and energy use in the Global North while raising living standards in the Global South
  • Reparations for the disproportionate harms of climate change and ecological destruction borne by Indigenous peoples, the Global South, and other frontline communities

Notably, the manifesto doesn’t downplay the magnitude of the challenge or suggest that an ecosocialist transformation can be achieved gradually or through piecemeal reforms. It argues that a revolutionary rupture with capitalist social relations is necessary, while affirming that this must be carried out democratically by the working class and oppressed rather than imposed from above.

Beyond the manifesto, the Tasks and Priorities document lays out a multilevel action plan for translating ACR’s ecosocialist politics into practice.

Translating Ecosocialist Politics into Practice

Building the organisational and social weight of the ecosocialist movement itself is a top priority, with a focus on political education, propaganda, and recruitment. Plans include a speaker tour and public meetings following the conference, the launch of a new theoretical journal, and holding a major ecosocialism conference later in the year.

Internationalism and solidarity

Internationalism and solidarity are also central to the our perspective. The bulletin reaffirms the organisation’s commitment to supporting the Palestinian liberation struggle through active participation in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and other solidarity campaigns. It also calls for deepening collaboration with revolutionary currents across Europe and around the world, including building a sizeable ACR delegation to the upcoming Fourth International youth camp.

Domestic campaigns and struggles

On the domestic terrain, ACR aims to orient its activity around several key fronts:

  • Grassroots campaigns to defend and expand public services, with an emphasis on housing, healthcare, and transportation. The demand for free and massively improved public transit will be a particular focus.
  • Building working class resistance to austerity and the cost-of-living crisis through engagement in trade union struggles and initiatives to democratise the labour movement.
  • Combating the rising tide of attacks on oppressed groups, from the demonisation of trans people to the scapegoating of migrants and refugees. The bulletin pledges to step up antiracist organising and support the formation of a “Disabled People’s Alliance” to fight benefits cuts and demand full social inclusion.

Preparing for struggles under a Labour government

While noting the likelihood of a Labour victory in the next general election, the bulletin insists that ACR’s role is not to cheerlead for Starmer but to prepare for the inevitable struggles that will be necessary to resist austerity and win transformative change under a Labour government. The group plans to use the election campaign as an opportunity to amplify radical demands and build the fighting capacity of social movements and the working class.

Strengthening ACR’s internal organiSation

Alongside its outward-facing work, ACR is also taking steps to strengthen its internal organisation and expand its resource base. Plans include systematising member recruitment and engagement, improving branch coordination and internal democracy, and boosting regular income through increased member rates and donations.

This first ACR conference bulletin is a sober assessment of the profound challenges humanity faces in this era of compounding capitalist crises as well as a serious attempt to chart a revolutionary socialist path forward. While under no illusions about the Herculean nature of this task, ACR remains firmly committed to the belief that another world is possible and that the working-class majority has both the interest and the potential power to bring it into being.

Anticapitalist Resistance Tackles Racism and Imperialism at 2024 Conference

Anticapitalist Resistance (ACR) has released its second conference bulletin ahead of the organisation’s annual gathering on June 1–2 in London. The bulletin features substantial new documents on fighting racism and analysing the current state of global imperialism.

Fighting Racism: An Integral Part of Ecosocialist Struggle

The historical roots of racism in capitalism

The centrepiece is a sweeping historical and theoretical account of racism and anti-racist resistance in Britain from the colonial era to the present day. The document traces how racism has been integral to the development of capitalism from the start, justifying enslavement, colonial plunder, and imperial dominance.

It chronicles how different communities of colour in Britain, from the Windrush generation of Caribbean migrants to Asian youth in the 1970s, have faced both state repression and street-level racist violence, and how they have fought back through self-organisation and collective action.

Rejecting the attempts of right-wing ideologues to downplay the reality of institutional racism, ACR insists that racism remains deeply embedded in the structures of capitalist society. The document calls for a renewal of grassroots anti-racist movements rooted in the principle of oppressed communities organising autonomously with the backing of the wider left and labour movements.

Confronting anti-migrant racism and Islamophobia today

Confronting the demonisation of migrants and Islamophobia will be key tasks for ACR in the coming period, the bulletin argues. It condemns the Labour Party’s shameful record of triangulating to racist sentiment, insisting that anti-racism is a non-negotiable principle for socialists.

Inter-Imperialist Rivalry and the Threat of World War

Ukraine, NATO, and US hegemony

Turning to the international situation, the bulletin offers a sobering assessment of the resurgence of inter-imperialist rivalry and the growing threat of world war. It locates the war in Ukraine within the broader context of the US attempting to shore up its waning global hegemony through NATO expansion.

While offering unconditional support to the Ukrainian resistance against the Russian invasion, ACR also takes aim at “campist” currents on the international left that downplay the crimes of Putin’s regime in the name of “anti-imperialism.”

Opposing campism and building internationalism from below

Similar issues arise in relation to China, where the ACR stands in solidarity with the Uyghurs and Tibetans against state repression, and the Middle East, where the group condemns the genocidal onslaught of the Israeli state against the Palestinian people.

Pushing back against the influence of pro-Putin and pro-Assad “campism” on the British left will be an important focus for ACR. The bulletin counterposes internationalism and anti-imperialism “from below” based on supporting the struggles of workers and oppressed people worldwide.

Resisting militarism and rearmament

A key flashpoint in the coming period will be resisting the drive towards rearmament and militarism, as NATO cynically presents itself as a champion of democracy. ACR will continue to campaign for nuclear disarmament, against military spending hikes, and for the disbandment of imperialist alliances like NATO.

Open Debate and Democratic Decision-Making

The bulletin reveals an ACR that isn’t afraid to wade into thorny debates on the British left. A resolution from the group’s Oxford branch appeals to the National Council to withdraw and refer to further discussion a section on “overpopulation” in the draft Ecosocialist Manifesto that some comrades felt was framed in an “outrageous, divisive, and insulting way.”

With a wide-ranging and ambitious agenda that puts anti-racism and anti-imperialism at the heart of ecosocialist politics, ACR is helping to lay the groundwork for a renewed revolutionary left in Britain and internationally.

Amendments and collective discussion to strengthen conference documents

We expect and hope that all these documents, submitted by the ACR Council, will be changed and strengthened in the course of the collective discussion as members submit amendments either to add a new dimension to the discussion or to disagree with a position put in the original – which conference itself will decide on.

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Simon Pearson is on the Editorial Board of the Anti*Capitalist Resistance and is a Midlands-based political activist.

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