This post from Anarchist News (and the discussion thread that follows) from a few months back is worth checking out. It is illustrative of something that I have been thinking would eventually happen in the “left” anarchist milieu. While many left-anarchists are clearly oriented toward the Maoist-influenced Antifa, and others toward reformist tendencies like DSA, it appears that still others are gradually moving toward “pan-secession” or, roughly, the kinds of ideas discussed at ATS. The “Bolo’bolo” left-anarchist utopian book from the 1980s is very popular among left-anarchists, particularly Green types, and seems to have heavily influenced the thinking of some anarchists, a small number of whom have now embraced the “pan-secession” framework. Increasingly, I am coming across conflicts in the left-anarchist milieu between those who are primarily motivated by mere anti-rightism and those who are motivated by anti-systemism on a general level.
A while ago I/we made a topic of the week discussing differences among anarchists. This topic is about how you engage with not-anarchist people and ideas, stemming from the recent debate about Bellamy’s new project Liberty and Logos in which he’s engaging with someone who’s a self-identified reactionary (and someone who apparently has some unpleasant yet unsurprising interests according to some recently deleted tweets).
The concept of anarchy that Bellamy is working with here is one where there’s no big happy ending where everyone agrees with us (never mind us agreeing with each other) – an idea that most readers on this site can probably get behind. Most people, even people we love and care for, don’t agree with us, and relationships with people who aren’t anarchists are inevitable in this world. The more complicated question is where do we go from there?
Agree with his approach or not, this is what Bellamy is attempting. My question for you is, what is your next step from that premise? What does it mean to look for allies in a world that’s generally hostile to us? How wide do you draw your circle, where and how do you draw the line, and what does that engagement mean?