January 25 will be the tenth anniversary of Attack the System’s first appearance online. Special thanks to all of those who have supported or contributed to ATS over the years. For newer readers or those with a taste for nostalgia, here’s what we looked like in the old days. Check it out.
As a veteran of the conventional left-wing anarchist movement in the 1980s, I started to realize around 1990 that there was a whole world of ideas and issues that anarchists were ignoring in favor of their usual focus on countercultural lifestyles and left-liberal popular causes. I became interested in developing a new kind of anarchist movement that would not necessarily turn its back on everything that came before, but would draw on a much wider array of influences and incorporate a much broader perspective into its analysis. Throughout the 1990s, I observed movements like the patriot/militia folks, the anti-globalization movement, and the Austro-libertarians, and realized that the internet would be the best tool for developing the kind of alternative anarchist movement I wished to see emerge. That’s how AttacktheSystem.Com was born. The name was originally suggested to me by an 18 year old college student I met at an anti-drug war protest in November, 2000, and the original version of ATS was designed by a friend of mine’s younger brother who was still in high school at the time. Right from the start, we were a thorn in the side to the anarcho-leftoids and have been ever since. Infoshop.Org placed us in their Index of Forbidden Websites. For the most part, I have always regarded our critics among the leftoid-anarchists as the public relations and marketing division of ARV/ATS as few others have made more effort than they to publicize what we do here. Essentially, they play the same role as Jesus freaks passing out fliers at a Marilyn Manson concert saying “Don’t Let Marilyn Manson Send Your Soul to Hell” thereby increasing the mystique and exotic appeal associated with performers like MM.
I’m actually amazed at how rapidly alternative anarchism has grown, particularly over the last few years. Now it seems like new sites, blogs, or local groups are popping up every week. What we see going on right now in Western anarchism is some good old fashioned Darwinian evolution. The archaic anarcho-leftoids who still think it’s 1969 will have to either adapt or face extinction.