Upcoming Appearances by Keith Preston (and some humor from the critics) 4

I have two speaking engagements coming up over the next few weeks. On Halloween I will be speaking to the National Policy Institute at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. My topic will be “American Imperialism vs The Identity of the World’s Peoples.”

I will also be speaking at the H.L. Mencken Club in Baltimore on November 7. My topic will be ““The Alliance of Transnational Capitalism and the Managerial Therapeutic State.”

I plan to smash a lot of sacred totems at both of these events.

Speaking of which, a self-styled “anti-fascist” (whatever that means) blog recently had this to say about yours truly:

“Preston will be known to people as he is a defector from the larger anarchist movements of the 70s and 80s, formerly a member of Workers Solidarity Alliance and was present at the founding convention of the Love and Rage Anarchist Federation.  He now runs the “pan-Secessionist” Attack the System, where he promotes right-wing libertarian ideas and racialist National Anarchism.  Here he will give his usual speech where he sadly attempts to soften anarchism to be compatible with authoritarian racial nationalism, which he sees as having common ground as they are both opposed to the current State.”

The description of my background here is largely accurate, although the description of my present views is a bit narrowly-focused. I suppose I could be considered a post-left, synthesist-anarchist, anarchist without adjectives, geo-mutualist-syndicalist, conspiracy-libertarian-populist, national-anarchist, paleoconservative panarchist. “Pan-secessionism” is a tactical and strategic concept, not an ideological one. Nor will I be speaking on “authoritarian racial nationalism” at NPI. I will be offering a critique of U.S. imperialism, and explaining why cultural, ethnic, or religious identitarians, including Europeans, should be opposed to the American empire.

Likewise, my name apparently came up during the course of a lengthy multi-part essay on a fellow named Michael Schmidt, who is supposedly a white South African “white nationalist anarcho-communist” or something to that effect, and who supposedly operates under multiple identities, including that of “Francois Le Sueur.” Apparently, this person has been the source of a great deal of drama in the left-wing anarchist scene in recent times.

“While Schmidt navigated what he described to us as a ‘whisper campaign,’ Le Sueur was so active online that Keith Preston, who runs the pan-secessionist blog, Attack the System, even quoted him in his book of the same name, calling him ‘one of my readers.’ Preston is a former-anarchist who believes that if everyone, left and right wing (inclusive of fascists and neo-Confederates), supports secession, humanity will break apart the greater evil of the federal government, and create metropolitan regions dominated by the Nietzschean ubermensch. Specifically, Preston quotes Le Sueur’s rebuttal of antifascist writer Matthew Lyons’s brilliant critique of pan-secessionism:

The questions raised by [Lyons] appear to reduce to one single fear: the question of power; that decentralizing power allows for no comprehensive/universalist (totalitarian?) enforcement of social norms. And this is clearly what the author wishes: some universal enforcement mechanism that can punish communities for their ‘deviant’ social choices. Surely that is true authoritarianism, writ large, compared with the possibility of some communities choosing authoritarianism writ small as a much lesser threat to civilization?

These communities would include, for Preston, Russia’s fascist National Bolshevik groups and Christian Identity fascist groups, which provides, in Lyons’s words, ‘a recipe for warlordism.’

“Le Sueur and Preston embraced national-anarchist formations, along with other red-brown secessionist assemblages, as an opportunity to join together in dismantling the perceived greater threat of the US federal government and Zionist imperialism. Not only was Michael Schmidt quoted by Keith Preston as François Le Sueur, but he was quoted as a critic of antifascist analysis, indicating to us that if he was doing “research” with his fascist personality, it was in service of and not to infiltrate the pan-secessionist and national-anarchist tendencies. Schmidt’s own appreciation for Keith Preston’s Attack the System blog was laid bare in an article written by Preston and shared on February 27, 2011, by the Le Sueur Facebook page called, ‘Am I a Fascist?’ Preston and Le Sueur were also ‘friends’ on Facebook.’

I do recognize the name of Francois Le Sueur from the social media forums I’m associated with and do recall quoting him in my book, though I don’t recall any recent interaction or communication with him. I also recall reading some anarchist material by Michael Schmidt, and I may have quoted him in my book or one of my articles (or both). I don’t care enough about this “controversy” to bother looking all of this up. However, the article once again offers something of caricature of my actual views.

Preston is a former-anarchist

Whether these guys like it or not, I’m still an anarchist who embraces the entire range of anarchist and decentralist thought. Sorry if that if upsets anyone.

who believes that if everyone, left and right wing (inclusive of fascists and neo-Confederates), supports secession, humanity will break apart the greater evil of the federal government,

Oh, the horror.

and create metropolitan regions dominated by the Nietzschean ubermensch

I imagine it would be pointless to explain social psychology and elite theory, let alone Nietzsche, to ingrates. So I won’t bother.

These communities would include, for Preston, Russia’s fascist National Bolshevik groups and Christian Identity fascist groups, which provides, in Lyons’s words, ‘a recipe for warlordism.’

Love them or hate them, National-Bolshevism and Christian Identity are very marginal tendencies in the US and not likely to have influence beyond the periphery. The comments about the N-Bs are a bit of a non-sequitur. Although Russia is not exactly under the rule of the U.S. federal government, the NBP is currently banned in Russia. Whatever the case, the actual idea is the building of an international coalition against the global plutocratic super-class with regional federations of autonomous and self-determined communities reflecting an infinite variety of themes being the alternative. See here and here.

Preston embraced national-anarchist formations, along with other red-brown secessionist assemblages, as an opportunity to join together in dismantling the perceived greater threat of the US federal government and Zionist imperialism.

Guilty but proud. The actual ambition is to build an international coalition against imperialism generally, and against the Anglo-American-Zionist-Wahhabist axis specifically, which is the dominant wing of the international power elite.

4 comments

  1. Keith what in your mind constitutes the minimum requirement to be an anarchist? I know the libcoms would say that an anarchist strives to fight oppression in every sphere of life (what ever that means) and is thus not reducible to mere anti-statism. They also claim that egoism is out, I guess they never read Stirner. From what I can tell Stirner never really wanted to have a moral crusade to save the proletariat, but giving more of a guide for individuals to live by. Part of the problem is the diversity of anarchist beliefs.

    So 1) is it even possible to find a common thread that could be found that would say everything from ancaps, to libcoms to anarcho-nationalists could all meaningfully be called anarchists?

    2) If so what criteria would they, in your eyes, have to meet?

    • Why don’t we ask these self-proclaimed experts?

      http://antifascistnews.net/2015/10/23/letter-to-keith-preston-no-youre-not-an-anarchist/

      Seriously, I think the basic dictionary definition of anarchism is sufficient enough. The Wikipedia entry on anarchism, for example, is actually pretty good.

      “Anarchism is a political philosophy that advocates self-governed societies with voluntary institutions. These are often described as stateless societies,but several authors have defined them more specifically as institutions based on non-hierarchical free associations.Anarchism holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary, or harmful.While anti-statism is central,anarchism entails opposing authority or hierarchical organisation in the conduct of human relations, including, but not limited to, the state system.

      As an anti-dogmatic philosophy, anarchism draws on many currents of thought and strategy. Anarchism does not offer a fixed body of doctrine from a single particular world view, instead fluxing and flowing as a philosophy.There are many types and traditions of anarchism, not all of which are mutually exclusive.Anarchist schools of thought can differ fundamentally, supporting anything from extreme individualism to complete collectivism.Strains of anarchism have often been divided into the categories of social and individualist anarchism or similar dual classifications.Anarchism is usually considered a radical left-wing ideology,and much of anarchist economics and anarchist legal philosophy reflect anti-authoritarian interpretations of communism, collectivism, syndicalism, mutualism, or participatory economics.”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchism

      “I know the libcoms would say that an anarchist strives to fight oppression in every sphere of life (what ever that means) and is thus not reducible to mere anti-statism. They also claim that egoism is out, I guess they never read Stirner. From what I can tell Stirner never really wanted to have a moral crusade to save the proletariat, but giving more of a guide for individuals to live by. Part of the problem is the diversity of anarchist beliefs.”

      I read something once by a critic of anarchism who argued that there seemed to be as many different kinds of anarchism as there are other ideologies put together, and that seems to be about right. For instance, I recently referred someone with a marginal interest in anarchism to Paul Eltzbacher’s book on the 7 major theorists of classical anarchism: Godwin, Proudhon, Stirner, Bakunin, Kropotkin, Tucker, Tolstoy. After this fellow read the book, he told me, “These people all sound like they had totally different philosophies.” I think that’s a correct impression to a great degree.

      It’s no different than the way that many different groups have claimed the banner of “Christianity” or “Islam” or “Communism” even if they didn’t recognize each other in many instances or even fought wars with each other.

      “So 1) is it even possible to find a common thread that could be found that would say everything from ancaps, to libcoms to anarcho-nationalists could all meaningfully be called anarchists?

      2) If so what criteria would they, in your eyes, have to meet?”

      I don’t know that there really needs to be a common identity among anarchists as much as a common means of working around differences. I think the most viable approach in that regard would be recognition of a plurality of anarchisms, and with such concepts as individual liberty, voluntary association, pluralism, and peaceful co-existence being the general paradigm, with decentralization, local sovereignty and mutual self-separation being the means of handing irreconcilable differences.

  2. The idea of a ‘defector’ from a movement which explicitly espouses a lack of idealized heirarchy is the sort of cognitive dissonance that prevents me from engaging leftists in conversation. They’re so exactly like everyone else, but they think they’re super unique.

  3. ” “These people all sound like they had totally different philosophies.” I think that’s a correct impression to a great degree.”

    Could not be more true, that is why it becomes problematic when someone says I have the “only legitimate” form of anarchism. If someone says a Christian, or an egoist or a free market advocate cannot be an anarchist Tolstoy, Stirner and Tucker would beg to differ.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s