In his recent interview of yours truly, Michael Enoch Isaac pointed out that the anarcho-Marxist social justice warriors have come to represent totalitarian humanism in its idealized Platonic form and, as I have said before, they play the same role to the totalitarian humanist establishment as the Red Guards did to Chairman Mao. Given these conditions, it’s up to folks like us to save the good name of anarchism.
However, a broader question involves the issue of whether the mainstream anarchist movement will continue to survive as a self-identified anarchist movement, or even as a movement at all. Of course, when looking at anarchist history, we see the beginning of modern anarchism with the classical anarchist movement of the 19th and early 20th century. The mainstream anarchist movement of today represents a second wave of anarchism, what might be properly called neo-anarchism, that has its roots not in classical anarchism but in the New Left. But the New Left has long since become moribund, institutionalized, and stale, not unlike its Old Left predecessors against whom the New Left was initially intended to be a rebellion.
A friend of mine who is a post-left anarchist influenced by Stirner and also by Buddhism makes this observation:
“Sometimes I think that the “anti-oppression movement” (which seems to be the term they prefer to use to describe themselves) will at some point give up on “anarchism” altogether. I say this because I notice that in the mission statements of various formerly-anarchist groups, all references to being “anti-state” or “anarchist” are slowly disappearing. Instead, I see “anti-oppression” as a term coming up more and more.”
This would be a welcome development, because then the good name of anarchism would be on its way to being restored. In such a scenario, the social justice warriors would formally play the same role in their relationship to the anarchists as the Marxists did in the past, that of the totalitarian leftist opposition. Of course, this is the informal role they play now, all the while trying to usurp the anarchist name. But a full break between the ground level forces of totalitarian humanism and the anarchist label would indeed help to make this dichotomy much more clear to the casual observer.
Additionally, we have to consider that the totalitarian humanism-inspired anarcho-Marxist social justice warriors are in the process of imploding due to the combination of intense rivalries between different factions in the “Who’s most oppressed?” pissing contest, and the pathological and dysfunctional personalities that dominate that particular milieu. Therefore, it is doubtful that this movement will continue for an indefinite period of time. Eventually, it will either disintegrate or be absorbed by mainstream liberalism (or both).
As one observer notes:
It seems like its good to be against something, but you have to create something better to take its place. When people get too hung up on what they are against, without balancing that with real alternatives, it can become a drain and sabotage their success. I mean this specifically concerning ultra liberals who in my opinion get too hung up on righting every tiny thing that they see as an injustice, but then fail to come up with anything better than another flavor of communism or something like that in the process.
Of course, I began to notice this process unfolding some years ago, and began working to develop a new theoretical paradigm and strategic model for a 21st century anarchist movement, a third wave of anarchism, and others have been doing so as well. The Anarchist milieu is presently in a transitional phase. The neo-anarchists of the second wave are becoming stale and status quo, and starting to die culturally and intellectually. Meanwhile, a third wave is rising.