The Struggle for Bottom Unity in an Age of Division Reply

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

“The most interesting political questions throughout history have been whether or not humans will be ruled or free, whether they will be responsible for their actions as individuals or left irresponsible as members of society, and whether they can live in peace by volitional agreements alone.”

-Karl Hess

“We’ve got to face the fact that some people say you fight fire best with fire, but we say you put fire out best with water. We say you don’t fight racism with racism. We’re gonna fight racism with solidarity.”

-Fred Hampton

Solidarity is a bitch when everyone who can afford a knife is slitting each other’s throat. That’s the nasty little limerick that keeps playing on repeat in my skull like a mantra as populist grassroots uprisings devolve into bitter proxy wars between roaming tribes of bitter proles, killing each other over which oligarch’s name they have scrawled across their battle flags. Everyone wants to pick sides. Everyone is trolling for convenient scapegoats. I just see poor people killing poor people while two sick rich candidates arrange their corpses into clever platforms to stand on and promote more war from. The splintering of the George Floyd Uprisings into partisan turf warfare doesn’t just rip up my already bleeding heart because I had so much hope for the revolutionary potential now being squandered. It kills me because I have people on both sides of these gorey shenanigans and they should both be on the same damn team. All poor people should be, regardless of race or even politics.

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100+ nights of Portland protests – Attack the System podcast 1

Keith interviews Attack The System co-editor Vince about Portland Oregon’s 100 plus nights of protest. Vince lives in Portland and provides first hand accounts and context for the uprising

Discussion includes:

  • 100 nights of protests in Portland
  • Scope of the protests and effect on the city
  • Targets of the protest
  • Trump’s switch to a “Law & Order” re-election campaign
  • Trump’s fixation on Portland and the presence of Federal Police
  • Shooting of Portlanders with “less than lethal” munitions and use of Geneva Convention banned weapons
  • Participation of the Lumpenproletariat in the uprising
  • Effect of the pandemic on the uprising
  • “Disappearing” protesters by the police
  • Conflict between right-wing groups and anti-fascists
  • Shooting of Aaron Danielson by self proclaimed anti-fascist Michael Reinoehl, who was killed by police
  • Failure of Democrats and progressives to address police brutality in liberal cities
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Answering a Critic 3

A social media poster says of yours truly:

This guy is fash. If you look through any of this website, you see that he is constantly attacking the left and praising the right. He authors articles for far-right/conservative websites and writes eulogies for infamous reactionaries like James Buchanan. He is akin to National-Anarchism, which is a pseudonym for fascism.

A point-by-point response:

This guy is fash.

That this critic is using terms like “fash” and “reactionary” shows where his head is at. Normal people don’t talk like that. What we have here is a true believer in a cult.

If you look through any of this website, you see that he is constantly attacking the left and praising the right.

I have criticized the right quite a bit. One of the very first articles I ever posted on ATS 20 years ago was the title “Conservatism is Not Enough” and I have also written articles with titles like “Beyond Conservatism” or “Why I Am Not a Cultural Conservative.” I once wrote an article comparing America’s “war on drugs” to the Third Reich’s racial persecution policies. I’ve compared the neocons’ foreign policy to that of the Hitler regime as well. Not exactly stereotypical “fascist” positions. However, I have generally criticized the left more than the right all things considered. Why? Because the hard left has a powerful grip on the wider anarchist milieu, because the left is a rising political force (“wokeness”) while the right represents forces that are in decline (like traditional religion or traditional forms of out-group prejudice), and because the ideology of the PC Left is being co-opted by the ruling class and incorporated into its self-legitimating superstructure.

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Pick Your Own, Mix and Match 3

Anarchist News

What kind of anarchist best describes you? If you embrace a label (or labels), what are they and why? I have gone by anarcho-feminist, at least until I was confronted by too many others using the same label to mean something totally different. If no existing label suits you, then what one(s) would you coin, and what would define them?

Refusing to take this labeling thing seriously, as what single word could possibly do justice to the ways that we are all unique powderpuffs, we can still play with labels/characteristics that we think deserve some attention and re-valuation. I would aim for being a Wilde-ist: Williams says about Wilde that he “found in art an exercise in freedom, a source of pleasure, and a mode of value free from moral considerations, the demands of utility, and the dictates of the market. He looked to art as an ideal for labor —creative, meaningful, its products a joy both to make and to use—and as the central element of any life worth living. He therefore thought that society should be organized to foster this sense of beauty —beauty in our surroundings, in our work, in our relationships; in the lives, imaginations, and souls of individual people.” And maybe a Bene Gesseritist too. For those bad days…

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Notes on Post-Anarchism Reply

By Sureyyya Evren

Anarchist Library

There is a postanarchist reduction of classical anarchism seen in texts of some key writers on post-anarchism (like Todd May, Saul Newman, Lewis Call or more recently Richard Day).[1] Up until now, this feature of the postanarchist tendency has been criticized by various anarchists. But actually, ‘anarchists’ should admit that, ‘post-anarchists’ didn’t invent this! ‘Post-anarchists’ have been using the common anarchist history writing on classical anarchism which can be found anywhere in any reference book. The problem is, because of the reference to poststructuralism, they could be expected not to rely on that canonized history of anarchism without interrogating it, without questioning it at all.

When post-anarchists take the findings of a modernist, Eurocentric history writing of anarchism as a given truth and start working on this ground, it is likely to see them (post-anarchists) reproduce many problems already existing in this practice of history writing. (Jason Adams has given a basic critical questioning of this while he was talking on the “constructed history of anarchism”[2]).

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Ian M. Returns, Minneapolis Experience, & Voluntaryist Silver Linings 5

Listen here.

Episode 368 welcomes back Ian Mayes to have a chat with Skyler on the following topics: working in the neighborhood where George Floyd was killed; his experience with the Minneapolis protests and riots; Kyle Rittenhouse; lockdown created tinderbox across the country and world; Minneapolis “defund the police” campaign; lack of real anti-authoritarian sentiment; political coalition building and guilt by association; civil wars and anarchists; Portland neighborhood “wake up” protests (Reason interview); voluntaryist welfare actions, ie. silver linings; restorative justice systems (Kibbe interview); and more.

Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com and UnschoolingDads.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.

Does “free” state healthcare and education increase freedom with Keith Preston Reply

The mindcrime liberty show is joined with guest Keith Preston to discuss the topic of whether free state healthcare and education increased the cause of freedom.   Two of the biggest areas where state power has grown is in the fields of education and healthcare  both of which have been center pieces of much of the left’s platform throughout the world.  Has the Labor/Social democratic program of “free” nationalized healthcare as well as programs like medicare and ACA (different societies have different names but they are fairly comparable) increased human freedom?  Has “free” and compulsory  government  education improved the cause of freedom as well?  Isn’t expecting the state to educate and take care of you a  dangerous and dodgy idea?

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The Anarchist Case for Small Business Reply

Remember that Commies have always denounced anarchists as “petite bourgeoisie.”

By Will Collins

The American Conservative

It’s been a brutal year for locally owned shops and restaurants. The COVID-19 outbreak and the accompanying lockdowns shuttered storefronts and exiled customers. Pandemic relief efforts aimed at small businesses were ruthlessly exploited by big corporations. According to the New York Times, a third of New York City’s locally owned businesses may never reopen after quarantine is lifted.

Then came the riots. From Minneapolis to Portland to Kenosha, small business owners have borne the brunt of recent disorders. According to a lawsuit, armed vigilantes in the short-lived Seattle autonomous zone threatened local shop owners. Tearful day-after videos from dispossessed restaurateurs and clips of violent confrontations between shopkeepers and looters routinely circulate on social media. Many independent stores will never reopen. Target has the financial and logistical wherewithal to rebuild, but your local bakery or takeout place may not be so lucky.

Media coverage of small business losses has been largely unsympathetic. CNN chyrons characterize violent protests as “mostly peaceful.” Property damage, even the wholesale destruction of shops and restaurants, is disparaged as trivial compared to police killings (never mind the fact that property destruction and violence go hand in hand). National Public Radio recently published a credulous interview with the author of In Defense of Looting, who seems to think that vandals carefully distinguish between independently owned shops and national chains when running riot through a neighborhood.

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Greek City-States Reply

When looking at alternative political models, the one that I keep coming back to is ancient Greece. Many anarchists will cite models like communes that only existed in isolated enclaves for brief periods, as opposed to systems like the Greek cities, the Holy Roman Empire, the Ottoman millet system, traditional Chinese villages, or native tribal confederations, all of which were real civilizations or societies that existed for centuries.

National Geographic

A city-state, or polis, was the community structure of ancient Greece. Each city-state was organized with an urban center and the surrounding countryside. Characteristics of the city in a polis were outer walls for protection, as well as a public space that included temples and government buildings. The temples and government buildings were often built on the top of a hill, or acropolis. A surviving example of a structure central to an ancient acropolis is the famous Parthenon of Athens. The Parthenon was a temple built to honor the goddess Athena. The majority of a polis’s population lived in the city, as it was the center of trade, commerce, culture, and political activity.

There grew to be over 1,000 city-states in ancient Greece, but the main poleis were Athína (Athens), Spárti (Sparta), Kórinthos (Corinth), Thíva (Thebes), Siracusa (Syracuse), Égina (Aegina), Ródos (Rhodes), Árgos, Erétria, and Elis. Each city-state ruled itself. They differed greatly from the each other in governing philosophies and interests. For example, Sparta was ruled by two kings and a council of elders. It emphasized maintaining a strong military, while Athens valued education and art. In Athens every male citizen had the right to vote, so they were ruled by a democracy. Rather than have a strong army, Athens maintained their navy.

Greek city-states likely developed because of the physical geography of the Mediterranean region. The landscape features rocky, mountainous land and many islands. These physical barriers caused population centers to be relatively isolated from each other. The sea was often the easiest way to move from place to place. Another reason city-states formed, rather than a central, all-encompassing monarchy, was that the Greek aristocracy strove to maintain their city-states’ independence and to unseat any potential tyrants.

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Trump and Netanyahu rail against anarchists. As an anarchist, that gives me hope Reply

As the saying goes, you can judge a person by their enemies.

By Adi Callai

Mondoweiss

Trump says the rebellion against police and white supremacy is led by “professional anarchists.” Netanyahu parrots Trump like a ventriloquist’s dummy, saying protesters against him are “anarchists, not victims of the pandemic.” Biden tags along, saying “anarchists should be prosecuted.” What is it about anarchists that unites statesmen across cultures and ideologies?

The knee-jerk reaction of many a liberal is to redirect the accusation at the tyrant. No! says the Washington Post, “Trump is the real anarchist.” No! says editor-in-chief of Haaretz Aluf Benn, “Netanyahu is the real anarchist.” The people harangued by federal agents in Portland or brutalized by Israeli policemen in Jerusalem are mere protesters, they say—not anarchists. But, as the saying goes, even a blind goat is right twice a day. Both Trump and Netanyahu attempt to discredit the movement by using “anarchists” as a catchall negative, but to deny the presence of anarchists or the anarchic nature of the protests is misleading and false.

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David Graeber Dead: Anthropologist & Anti-Capitalist Thinker Behind ‘We Are the 99%’ Slogan Dies at 59 Reply

By Paul Farrell

Heavy.Com

David Graeber, the anthropologist who was influential in the Occupy Wall Street movement and is believed to have coined the phrase, “We are the 99%,” has died at 59.

Graeber’s death was confirmed on the morning of September 3 by his wife, Nika Dubrovsky. Dubrovsky tweeted, “Yesterday the best person in a world, my husband and my friend. @davidgraeber died in a hospital in Venice.”

Graeber was the professor of anthropology at the London School of Economics and wrote the book Debt: The First 5000 Years which was published in 2011. His other books include 2015’s Utopia Rules and 2018’s Bullshit Jobs: A Theory. In addition to his involvement with Occupy Wall Street, Graeber was also known for his activism with the Global Justice Movement. On his Twitter page, Graeber described himself as “an anthropologist, sometimes I occupy things & such. I see anarchism as something you do not an identity so don’t call me the anarchist anthropologist.”

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Why Not Anarchy? Reply

By Daniel McCarthy

Intercollegiate Studies Institute

Lawlessness abounded as the first six months of 2020 drew to a close. Americans could be forgiven for thinking they were living under anarchy, as leftist mobs tried to deface or tear down public memorials and statues of everyone from Christopher Columbus to Abraham Lincoln. Violent crime surged in New York City, while Seattle saw the creation of a radical commune of sorts, in the form of the so-called Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (or CHAZ). Mayors were slow to react, when they reacted at all. It was as if cities across the country had decided to submit to a mugging. Months of COVID-19 lockdowns had left Americans demoralized or stir-crazy.

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Return of the City-State Reply

The worldwide struggle of the future will pit revolutionaries everywhere against a rising techno-totalitarian global regime. I consider everything I have done over the past 20 years to be part of the preparation for the struggle to come.

By Jamie Bartlett

If you’d been born 1,500 years ago in southern Europe, you’d have been convinced that the Roman empire would last forever. It had, after all, been around for 1,000 years. And yet, following a period of economic and military decline, it fell apart. By 476 CE it was gone. To the people living under the mighty empire, these events must have been unthinkable. Just as they must have been for those living through the collapse of the Pharaoh’s rule or Christendom or the Ancien Régime.

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Why I Am An Anarchist 6

This quote from Leopold Kohr summarizes perfectly why I am an anarchist. The only remaining problems would be the prevention of power from reconcentrating or recentralizing (like the Macedonian conquest of Greece or the trajectory of US history), the possibility of localized conflicts (like Athens vs Sparta or the Bloods vs the Crips), and localized systems of abusive authoritarianism (like Jonestown).

See the source image

How to “Doom” Anarchism Reply

Center for a Stateless Society

Can there be such a thing as a “conservative anarchist?” Yes, as is true of any broad political label – socialist, democrat, libertarian, the list grows longer every day as the far right tries to appropriate the language of other tendencies. Ultimately, one can identify with whatever values they want, this is the foundation of many views I hold. After reading through “The Conservative Anarchist,” it appears that Dakota Hensley and I both share this general principle, and I’m sure there’s many other areas in which we might broadly agree. Where we appear to differ is in our conception of how individual values should be regarded.

Let’s consider a hypothetical society in which the state is gone, borders have been abolished, and communities are created by freedom of association. If I, a nonbinary person, am threatened by a growing contingent of transphobes in my immediate vicinity, and I’m not willing or able to leave, I should be able to use my resources and connections to create a support network to defend myself against any perceived threat. It also works in my best interest to use whatever means I have available to make my social environment safe for me; if this involves applying pressure to people who don’t respect peoples’ pronouns or claim that “gender is determined by biology,” that’s entirely consistent with anarchism. Hensley has a much different view on this than I do: “Anarchism is about building a society in which no one forces their beliefs on others. As long as you respect the views and lives of others, your personal views don’t matter.”

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The Conservative Anarchist 3

By Dakota Hensley

Anarchist News

Can an anarchist be socially conservative? Yes. I see no reason why someone who is anti-abortion or has fundamentalist views on sex or drugs can’t be an anarchist. Anarchism is about building a society in which no one forces their beliefs on others. As long as you respect the views and lives of others, your personal views don’t matter.

Historically, there are a few examples of conservative anarchists. One such thinker was Dorothy Day, a Christian anarchist and anarcho-distributist who died in 1980 (about nine days before John Lennon, actually). She wrote extensively in her organization’s penny-a-copy newspaper, The Catholic Worker. Going through the hundreds of articles she wrote, one will begin to see a few topics that she wrote about often. She wrote about cooperatives communes (especially farming communes), about the need to care for the poor, and about her support for private property and collectives. She also wrote about how she thought pre-marital sex was wrong and that abortion and birth control amount to genocide.

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“The Boogaloo” Reply

I’ve been impressed with some of the discussions that have been taking place at A-News in recent months. The discussion that follows this piece is pretty good in places. There needs to be a psychic sea change in the general anarchist milieu away from hysterical leftism, which is part of the problem and not part of the solution, toward a general consensus in favor of autonomous communities for all forms of anarchists and voluntary communities for adherents of all other philosophies.

AnarchistNews.Org

A couple of months ago, we spoke of civil war, not as passive spectators, but asking what if anarchists could be its main agitators. That hypothetical turning point seems to be foisted upon us. Recently, “professional anarchists” and “ANTIFA”tm have been accused of being “outside agitators” and the “terrorist” protagonists in the ongoing riots. Without denying our pedigree, we acknowledge that this time around our supposed role as protagonists is an exaggeration by the media and the government, as scaremongering and scapegoating tactics. So let’s give credit where it’s due: meet The Boogaloo.

Often styilized as “Boog”, this is a term used by (mostly right-wing) insurgents to refer to a Second Civil War in the United States. Some on the right see it mainly as an opportunity to cleanse the states and establish a “proper” government, some on the left have come to see it as a chance to execute their own agendas. They figure that the size of this country, its relationship with firearms and its many headstrong citizens will lead to a breaking point, the start of which is already here, according to some. The current riots that have erupted in many cities across the nation might the be closest thing yet to the fantasized Boogaloo.

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Appalachian Anarchism: What the Voting Record Conceals Reply

It’s somewhat surprising that C4SS would post an article like this.

By Dakota Hensley

Individualism, community, self-sufficiency, self-reliance, and faith are the values of the people of Appalachia. It is in these values that we find an anarchism that has existed in the cities and rural communities for decades. However, most Appalachians don’t refer to their culture as such, but it carries many of the same attitudes and beliefs as anarchism. .This fact is further obscured by the pressure to view political beliefs through an electoral lens.

Appalachian anarchism is a syncretic philosophy that combines Christian anarchism with individualist anarchism along with aspects of traditionalist conservatism and agrarianism. It is Christian anarchist in that faith is held dear to Appalachians who let the Bible guide them, despite 70% being unchurched and their native Christianity being decentralized and opposed to religious hierarchy and established churches. It is individualist in its opposition to communism and acceptance of self-reliance and self-sufficiency. It is traditionalist conservative in its views of social issues, being opposed to abortion and supportive of the traditions of the mountains among others. It is agrarian in its support of the back-to-the-land movement’s components, namely smallholding, self-sufficiency, community, and autonomy. All these mix together to create an individualist and conservative anarchism.

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America’s Secret War On Black Anarchism in Somalia Reply

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

“All power is truly in the hands of the people, and in the end the people will win.”

-Kuwasi Balagoon

With November rapidly approaching and a Biden victory appearing more and more plausible, Donald Trump, our petulant man-child in chief, looks to have chosen the Culture War as his Alamo, forgoing his previously hip harangues against those plague spewing Chinese communists for more homegrown boogeymen. It’s now Chicago, not Beijing, that offers the true threat to American exceptionalism, and two time honored tropes of American conservative bigotry in particular have been dusted off to frighten elderly white suburbanites to their diseased polling places, the Blacks and the Anarchists. To hear Trump and company tell the tale, our Democratically run cities are being burned to the ground by a motley crew of nappy-headed Willie Hortons and their lawless Antifa-fied honky allies, and for once, the GOP has set their sites on a legit threat to their morally bankrupt way of life.

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