Against Anarcho-Liberalism and the curse of identity politics 12

At last, some anarchists who get it.

Woke Anarchists

Anarchism in the UK is a joke. Once symbolising hard-fought struggles for freedom, the word has been stripped bare to make way for narrow-minded, separatist and hateful identity politics by middle class activists keen to protect their own privileges. We write this leaflet to reclaim anarchism from these identity politicians.

We write as self-identified anarchists who see our roots in the political struggles of the past. We are anti-fascists, anti-racists, feminists. We want to see an end to all oppressions and we take an active part in those fights. Our starting point though is not the dense language of lefty liberal academics, but anarchism and its principles: freedom, cooperation, mutual aid, solidarity and equality for all regardless. Hierarchies of power, however they manifest, are our enemies.

Identity politics is part of the society we want to destroy.

Identity politics is not liberatory, but reformist. It is nothing but a breeding ground for aspiring middle class identity politicians. Their long-term vision is the full incorporation of traditionally oppressed groups into the hierarchical, competitive social system that is capitalism, rather than the destruction of that system. The end result is Rainbow Capitalism – a more efficient & sophisticated form of social control where everyone gets a chance to play a part! Confined to the ‘safe space’ of people like them, identity politicians become increasingly detached from the real world.

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12 comments

  1. I’ve this awesome essay, and you can download it from the Anarchist Library. I think you make compilations and recommendations from the Anarchist Library alongside Center for a Stateless Society (C4SS). Even though C4SS dies indeed have flaws when it comes to certain recent material, but it’s still awesome. Can’t C4SS and ATS just get along and strike the root. Now on a change of topic, did ya know that there’s actually a growing number of leftwing nonreligious/non-traditional pro-lifers (I’m one of those folks), Pro-Life Feminists (Pro-Life Feminism has been around for several centuries, believe it or not), and even LGBTQ Pro-lifers as well. There’s also pro-life pagans/Wiccans. I’d rather prefer pro-life Wiccan witch chicks over pro-abortion Talmudic rabbinic jews anyday (I’m not anti-semitic BTW). I hear an interesting fact that Wicca is actually a Pro-Life religion while Talmudic Zionistic Judaism is considered to be the most pro-abortion religion in the world (again, I’m not an anti-semite).

    • “Can’t C4SS and ATS just get along and strike the root.”

      No, I don’t think that’s possible. From what I have observed of them, Goofy Gillis and his associates are leftist fundamentalists first, anarchists second. I don’t doubt their sincerity when they claim to be anarchists. But they seem more interested in upholding leftist fundamentalism than they are in anarchism per se. That doesn’t mean they don’t produce a lot of good work on various topics. But I see a fundamental weakness in their approach (and that of the left-anarchists generally).

      I would say that the starting point of any kind of viable anti-authoritarian philosophy has to start with the individual sovereignty/voluntary association paradigm, which in turn implies decentralized pluralism as the meta-political form of social organization. When it comes to wider questions of cultural values, the foundation of any kind of libertarian culture has to be the Socratic principle of open discourse and dialogue, which later became foundation of the Enlightenment liberal tradition (Voltaire, Jefferson, Mill, etc). From what I have observed, Gillis and his associates are more interested in ensuring that no one ever acts in a non-leftist or “un-progressive” manner. Hence, their general endorsement of PC, call out culture, antifa, the SJW paradigm, etc.

      These are fundamentally conflicting views. Either people have individual sovereignty and freedom of association or they don’t. If they do, then many people will act or associate in “un-progressive” ways. The Gillis types are more interested in wiping out social conservatism. But there is no exception to the free association principle for racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, religious fundamentalism, speciesism, etc any more than there is for communism, atheism, pornography, Satanism or drugs. It’s fine to have an anarchist group that is primarily oriented toward criticizing, for example, “racism, sexism, and homophobia,” just as it is fine to have an anarchist group that is primarily oriented toward art or music criticism, or medieval reenactors, emo music fans, or advancing the interests of otherkins and transracials. But individual and collective moral views have to be subordinated to the wider self-sovereignty/voluntary association principle. The same would apply to “conservative” or “right-wing” moral crusaders as well.

      Some anarchists will respond to this by saying, “But anarchism is also opposed to hierarchy!” I agree. But we have to distinguish between certain kinds of “hierarchies.” There are natural hierarchies (like a parent restraining a child from playing in the street, or having a surgeon rather than a parking lot attendant operate on a patient). There are voluntary hierarchies (like membership in a monastery or on a sports team). What we need to oppose are coercive hierarchies (i.e. government with its powers of taxation, prohibition, and conscription) or artificial hierarchies (class and caste systems based on economic monopolies and oligopolies protected by the state). Traditional systems of “racism, sexism, homphobia, etc” were rooted in state and class hierarchies, e.g. racism was a social hierarchy legislated by the state, women were considered property of males, homosexuals were considered to be criminals by the state, etc. That has nothing to do with SJW concepts like “cultural appropriation” or “microaggressions.”

      You mention pro-lifers and religion. I’ve also seen posts from Gillis favoring excluding pro-lifers from radical spaces, claiming religious people have no rights (because they’re “irrational”) and also excluding scientific, medical, or historical heretics (the anti-vaxxers, for example). But my view is the polar opposite, i.e. the Socratic principle comes first. That means pro-lifers, religious people, conspiracy theorists, historical heretics, medical heretics, and scientific heretics all get their seat at the table (and I am a pro-choice atheist, who rejects just about all conspiracy theories, and most heresies). As do other “ridiculous,” “unscientific” or otherwise criticized forms of identity or association such as the Dolezalite transracials or the otherkins, or “backward,” “reactionary” or “un-progressive” folks such as the North Sentilese Islanders.

      Plus, I reject the view that the Left is inherently less authoritarian or intellectually retrograde than the Right. I consider pro-lifers to be the Right’s equivalent of animal righters (I don’t care for either one). I consider MRAs/MGTOWs to be the Right’s version of the feminist-fascists. People who disagree with homosexuality for religious reasons are no different from people who disagree with eating pork or beef, drinking alcohol, consuming tobacco or drugs, using modern technology or working on the Sabbath for religious reasons. (Although, interestingly, I consider drug users and sex workers to be the modern equivalent of African-Americans and gays, in the sense of being a historical/traditional out-group that is persecuted by the state).

      The Gillis crowd has accused ATS of “fascist entryism” repeatedly. I would respond by accusing them of Jacobin entryism, i.e. their zeal for persecuting anything that is not considered to be “progressive” is exactly the viewpoint that ruined the French Revolution, and is fundamentally indistinguishable from the Soviet position. https://www.hoover.org/research/sordid-origin-hate-speech-laws

      I’ve also seen where Gillis raised objections to decentralization because localized communities might be “exclusionary” thereby violating individual liberty. I agree there is a tensions between individualism and communitarianism, and there always will be. It’s also true that localities can be very parochial. But the libertarian method of dealing with such conflicts is through separation and division (again, the Socratic principle of the right of exist that is promoted by groups like the Start-Up Societies Foundation today). He had also offered the example of Rwanda as a supposed “decentralized genocide” (which isn’t true), but “decentralized Jacobinism” is just as likely a prospect as well (as evidenced by the behavior of the antifa types).

      What really seems to stick in the craw of the leftoids is that a lot of “white nationalist” types are on the periphery of the ATS circle. A friend of mine asked me about that recently, and this is how I responded.

      Him: “AND why its so amazing you attract so many fools for the ethnostate that are racist tools playing right into the hands of that 1% of manipulators that love that the KKK and the “pro-birth” alleged Chrsitians are pitted against the Black Isrealites or other foolery.”

      Me: “Well, it’s mostly extremists and cultists that are opposed to the system. Normies mostly just play the Democratic/Republican game. Who are the extremists? Mostly, the Alt-Right/Lite configuration, the Marxist/anarchist configuration, the Left/SJW/Antifa configuration, the Libertarian/voluntaryist/an-cap configuration, the conspiracist/populist configuration, the religionist/cultist configuration, partisans of foreign states, scientific/medical/historical heretics, and the WN/NS/racists of color configuration. Plus criminals, psychopaths, weirdos, misfits and the mentally ill. I’ve seen all of these categories show up in my various forums and at various times.

      Him: “why are you apparently more contemptuous of the antifa (which does after mean “anti-FASCIST”) and SJW than the Alt Right tiki torch types?:

      Me: “I’m not. I’ve criticized the “hard left” (or what passes for it) more frequently because they’re a larger movement that has a tighter grip on various radical spaces, a rising force in the wider society, and one whose ideological paradigm is being coopted by the state and incorporated into the ruling class ideological superstructure. They’re also more socially acceptable. Claiming to be against “racism, sexism, fascism and homophobia” or whatever is not by itself controversial, even if the SJWs/Antifa use methods normies would prefer they didn’t. But parading with tiki torches, denouncing Jews, and calling for a white ethnostate puts one so far outside the realm of polite society/social acceptability that one is essentially removed from any conventional discourse. In other words, criticizing all that is a waste of mental energy. It’s like criticizing flat earthers. I’ve actually been attacked by the leftards more than the rightards on a personal level as well, mostly because the leftards are a rising force while the rightards represent a very marginal tendency that is an extremist sectors within a generally declining cultural and demographic milieu. So they generally don’t have a problem with anyone who will give them a fair hearing because beggars can’t be choosers.”

      Him: “You’re brutal! And I can’t argue with your response…”

      Enough said. In short, Goofy Gillis is indeed a goofball who lives up to the moniker I have given him in a very proficient manner, much to the delight of his friend Alexander Reid-Ross-Podhoretz-Kristol, no doubt.

      • I have said that there’s a steadily growing number of leftwing nonreligious / non-traditional pro-lifers such as myself, and that’s a very good thing in my eyes. I can’t believe, you’ve never heard of the Secular Pro-Life movement, Pro-Life Feminist groups like Rehumanize I ntl, Feminists for Life, LGBTQ Pro-Life groups like PKAGAL (Pro-Life Alliance of Gays And Lesbians), Pro-Life Humanists, and even Pro-Life Pagans. I’m Leftwing and I’m pro-life, I despise religion (specifically Christianity, Judaism, and Islam). Non-traditional Pro-Lifers, especially Pro-Life Atheists will easily debunk you on abortion, and there are secular reasons why babies deserve to live. We may agree to disagree all we want, but I’m talking about basic biology. The Start-Up Societies Foundation is awesome. If you’re curious about Pro-Life Feminism, just head to propeaceprolife.org as well as secularprolufe.org, and there you go.

        • I’m familiar with pro-life movements outside of the traditional religious communities, including the ones that you have mentioned. It’s not really an issue for me one way or the other. I respect pro-life ideals, just like I respect animal rights ideals, but neither of those are really things that motivate me. My guess is that with “pan-anarchism” or whatever there will be pro-life and pro-choice communities, just like there will be vegan and carnivore communities.

          • Also, there’s a big chunk of animal rights activists who’re Pro-Life. It makes you think. Both movements share the same tactics. Also, did ya know that the cool dude, Roderick T. Long, is an animal rights denier. He’s still a cool dude, I simply don’t agree with him on abortion though.

            • “Also, there’s a big chunk of animal rights activists who’re Pro-Life. ”

              That seems like a more consistent position.

              “Roderick T. Long, is an animal rights denier. He’s still a cool dude, I simply don’t agree with him on abortion though.”

              In an online conversation with me once, about 10 years ago, he compared pro-lifers with Guantanamo torturers. His rationale? Childbirth is painful. Therefore, denying someone access to abortion constitutes torture. He’s a super smart guy, but that argument has always struck me as out to lunch.

              • It’s also interesting how much diversity of opinion there is, which is another reason why “cult anarchism” isn’t a workable proposition, IMO. Well, I guess it might be on a micro-level, but no more so than the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

      • “women were considered property of males,” They were propriety in the sense men had to protect them. “I consider MRAs/MGTOWs to be the Right’s version of the feminist-fascists.” There is a bunch of them, It may be true to some, but not all. It is just like feminism, you have Wendy McElroy and you have girls defending the duluth model.

  2. One more thing, William Gillis has actually been aware of Leftwing Non-Traditional Pro-Lifers, but he can still be a stubborn bastard when it comes to supporting abortion. I don’t agree with him on abortion, but I do have common ground with him on other stuff, especially Free Market Anti-Capitalism FTW.

  3. Good article, aside from the feminist spiel. Regardless of what the dictionary or any feminist might say, feminism is NOT about equality, otherwise it wouldn’t be called feminism. Men in the UK and US are more oppressed than women.

    • White cisgender are obviously the most oppressed victims of the prison industrial complex, especially in the UK. According to that Post-Left Anarchist essay against Identity Politics, & Identity Politicians in general.

      • Not just the prison industrial complex. Also the most oppressed when it comes to genital integrity and sexual freedom. A man can’t even flirt with a woman anymore without her screaming rape, but the issue of woman-on-woman sexual assault is completely ignored. A woman “can’t” rape a man, so how can she possibly rape another woman? It’s just girls being girls! We all have the same parts!

        No. If a man can’t call a woman sexy anymore, neither should another woman. If a man can’t smack a woman’s ass, grab her tit, kiss her without consent, or come up from behind and play with her hair, neither should another woman. Not even in a “friendly” or “sisterly” way.

        Yet woman are regularly allowed to harass and molest other woman, and the victims are told they’re “being a big baby” or “blowing it out of proportion” if they protest. While men are expected to walk on eggshells with their heads down and their mouths shut. Yes, there may be instances of misogyny here and there, but Western women now have the same legal rights as men, if not more. Any remaining “sexism” against women is due to biological differences and lifestyle choices. Women may truly be oppressed in Saudi Arabia, but America doesn’t need feminism anymore.

        We just need a bottle-necking event.

        If people really value equality, they need to stop calling themselves feminists. It is no different than calling yourself a masculinist, whiteist, blackist, gayist, straightist, etc. If someone self-identifies as a feminist, I will probably always consider them misandrist. Whether they are a man or a woman.

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