‘I Was In Three Riots In Four Months’ – A 30+ Year Anarchist Journey Reply

Pete invited Keith Preston to return to the show to talk about his 30+ year journey through anarchism.

Keith has devoted much of that time to anarchism’s historical study and hosts the largest pan-archist site on the web, Attack The System. Listen here.

AttackTheSystem.com

Keith’s Books

Donate at the Libertarian Institute

Pete’s Link to Sign Up for the LP

Lions of Liberty Podcast

Link to Richard Grove’s Autonomy Course

Pete’s Patreon

Pete’s Books on Amazon

Pete’s Books Available for Crypto

Pete on Facebook

Pete on Twitter

Episode 101 – Season 5 with Bellamy Reply

A great interview that covers many topics that are relevant to ATS such as the value of “pan-secessionism” as opposed to “world domination anarchism,”and left-wing authoritarianism. Listen here.

“Since Bellamy was here at the start of The Brilliant project it is great to check in where he is at regarding the things we are talking and thinking about. Obviously Bellamy and I have been having similar experiences in the Anarchist Space over the past few years. This episode is about some dissimilar experiences and what is next with each of us and our respective media projects.”

The Panarchist Solution to a World Divided Reply

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

In these days of epic collapse, with the established order rapidly disintegrating before our very eyes, mankind seems to be tearing apart at the seems and resorting to the bipolar extremes of the far-left and the far-right. And why the hell not? Poor people across the globe have grown weary of the false promises and bald faced lies of the so-called moderates. The one thing the warring camps of extremes seem to agree on is that the mass democracy of neoliberal globalism is an epic wash. A rigged shell game that only pays out to the house, and now the house is on fire.

So we witness the spectacle of populism on both the left and the right. Record numbers of young people embracing the once tainted label of socialism while the kind of xenophobic nativism which was once only uttered in hushed tones at the far corners of church potlucks has now become mainstream fodder, openly brandished like Hermann Goering’s revolver. These are the times that we live in but we’ve seen them before. Whenever empires crumble and the fixed markets of state capitalism find themselves in peril. The people who stand to gain the most from the cataclysm find themselves divided on the opposite ends of the barracks. Stalinists and Brown Shirts. Antifa and the Alt-right. It’s times like these when the call of Samuel L. Jackson’s prophetic DJ in Spike Lee’s classic dissection of urban upheaval, Do the Right Thing, rings like tinnitus through my eardrums. “Can we live together?! Together, can we live?!!” I’ve spent my life in search of an answer to that existential question. I believe I’m getting closer.

I’ve always found myself on the far-left end of the barracks, even while the proletariat was still drunk on the delusions of progress that came with a first black president and Apple Store commodity fetishism. I discovered Marx young and Chomsky shortly after. I spent the lion share of my teens flirting with a caraselle of Libertarian Socialist ideologies, Chomsky’s Syndicalism, Red Rosa’s Council Communism, Subcomandante Marcos’ Zapatizmo. All set to a hard driving soundtrack of Billy Bragg, Joe Strummer and Zack de la Rocha.

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Federalism in Proudhon and Ostrom 1

By David S. D’Amato

Libertarianism.Org

When people, libertarians included, think of federalism, chances are good that they do not think of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. More likely, they think of the The Federalist and its authors, and of the Constitution and its particular federalist structure. Federalism scholar S. Rufus Davis refers to Proudhon’s treatment of federalism, The Principle of Federation, as “a teasing puzzle,” long neglected as a bizarre and unwelcome entry in the story of the federal idea. Published in 1863, shortly before his death, The Principle of Federation arguably represents Proudhon’s mature thought and offers a robust account of federalism deserving of study among students of the idea, particularly libertarians. As we shall discuss here, certain libertarian thinkers, notably Vincent Ostrom, have perceived the importance and relevance of Proudhon’s federalism to a thoroughgoing approach to the idea itself and to a theory of the free society generally.

It is frequently argued that a variety of collective action problems demand a single central decision maker, one uniquely empowered to make final determinations. But centralized, hierarchical organizations are actually ill-equipped to provide effective solutions to collective actions problems, constrained both by their distance from the problems at hand and by the incentive problems associated with monopolies, which are insulated from feedback and competition. Indeed, as both Elinor and Vincent Ostrom’s work demonstrates, successful and efficient collective action requires just the opposite—a polycentric political and social order in which there are several centers of decision-making power, often even overlapping. Here, Proudhon’s federalism remains highly relevant and applicable to contemporary social and policy problems.

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Will Anarchism Always Fail? 12

Styx/Tarl is an excellent commentator on many levels but he gets a lot of stuff wrong in this. Although many anarchists portray anarchism in the worst possible light, so it’s not surprising there are so many misconceptions about the philosophy.

As everyone probably knows, I’m anarchist, although I have my own approach and generally distance myself from the “mainstream” anarchist movement. For instance, I reject much of the standard left/right paradigm and I certainly reject the blue tribe/red tribe dichotomy that defines much of US politics.

I reject both the conservative/right-libertarian plutocratic approach as well as the leftist/socialist/progressive statist approach. I’m more about individual liberty, voluntary association, decentralization, bottom-up organization, confederalism, voluntary federalism, localism, cooperativism, autonomism, mutual aid, direct action, self-organization, self-management, direct democracy (contextually), etc.

In a historical context, I am obviously far left, although tactically I would consider myself a radical centrist (or revolutionary centrist) as opposed to establishment centrism (the neoliberal/neocon duopoly). I would distance myself from much of what passes as “left” nowadays. I embrace the full range of anarchist, libertarian, decentralist, anti-state, or anti-authoritarian thinking, with the emphasis being on decentralized, voluntary, pluralism. I see different political and cultural groups as the modern equivalent of religious sects and ethno-cultural tribes (which is what people used to fight over in the past). My main emphasis would be on self-determination for all to the greatest degree possible.

I see my political outlook as basically the same one I would have taken if I were a Native American or African tribesman during the period of colonialism, where you had hundreds or thousands of tribes fighting each other with all of these eventually being overrun by the colonial empires. “Hey, we gotta forget about this petty shit and look at who is coming over the mountain and from the ocean!”

I think the main thing that would set me apart from the mainstream anarchist movement is that I reject the progressive/reactionary dichotomy as being the essence of political conflict. The kinds of social conflicts that leftists emphasize are real (class, race, gender, “culture war,” global North/South, etc) are real but they’re not all that there is. Also, what “constitutes” progress is often debatable. Eugenics and Prohibition were considered progressive in their time. I’m more about power vs anti-power. The problem with most leftist thinking is that it is simply about replacing one ruling class with another. I generally agree with Burke’s critique of the French Revolution, Bakunin’s critique of Marxism, and the left-communist/anarchist critique of Leninism on all that. I think that kind of approach has failed too many times in the past. I’m also opposed to reductionism (for example, the idea that everything can be explained by race or class). I hold to an analysis of power relations that is more like that of Max Weber or the elite theorists.

Overcoming “Anarcho-Sectarianism” 3

A reader writes:

“I was wondering why you promote and publish National-Anarchism? NAM is just white supremacist and false anarchism”

I would disagree with that characterization of National-Anarchism. As National-Anarchist Movement explains:

“National-Anarchists do not support Trump, Putin, Assad or Le Pen; National-Anarchists do not endorse racist behaviour or misogyny; National-Anarchists are opposed to fascism and neo-Nazism; National-Anarchists do not defend imperialism and colonialism; and National-Anarchists are not anti-communist to the extent that they forget about the capitalist ruling class or ignore the fact that the historical roots of our struggle can be found among those who have always fought against injustice and oppression. The list goes on. Ironically, there are people on the Left who seek to demonise us by associating us with the Far Right, something which can then lead to members of the Far-Right gravitating towards National-Anarchism itself in the mistaken belief that we are simply ‘playing’ at being Anarchists or using Anarchism as a convenient means of advancing fascist objectives in a more covert and surreptitious manner.”

As free-thinkers who adopt a decidedly non-coercive attitude, however, we also welcome people of various races, cultures, religions and sexual orientation and remain strongly anti-fascist in the sense that we completely reject both the overt fascism of the Right and the violent Left-wing hypocrites who gather under the counter-productive banners of Antifa. So, remember, if you wish to become involved with the National-Anarchist Movement then you must (a) learn what it means to be an Anarchist, and (b) discard the remaining vestiges of those bankrupt ideologies which have already resulted in the death of millions of innocent people all over the world.”


http://www.national-anarchist.net/2017/05/as-many-of-us-already-know-from.html?fbclid=IwAR1ZkX8bGEinb4O53zs5EOR-9aBlm_FfDaY-S2oQWZbf6kYUh0O234y2Kjs

The core aspects of my viewpoint are decentralism, voluntarism, pluralism, and panarchism.

I consider myself to be “pan-anarchist” or “anarcho-pluralist” is the sense of embracing all forms of anarchism, libertarianism, decentralism, anti-authoritarianism, and anti-statism, within a wider pan-decentralist, pan-voluntarist, pan-secessionist paradigm. I certainly consider national-anarchism to be a legitimate form of anarchism (and a very interesting and relevant one), and I am definitely a fellow traveler to national-anarchism. I also consider leftist, socialist, ancap, primitivist, transhumanist, technophile, religious, and anticlerical versions of anarchism to be legitimate as well. The “unity of opposites” idea is one of the things I find interesting about anarchism as a philosophical or meta-political paradigm.

I regard political ideologies in the same way I regard religious sects or ethnocultural tribes. None of them are “true” in the same sense that the laws of physics are true. They’re simply social constructs that people use to order their own psyche or create common meaning or community.

For instance, there was recently an article on the Mises Institute website claiming the Left is “uniquely evil.” That’s nonsense. The Left is not “uniquely evil.” The Left vs Right thing is merely modernity’s version of Protestant vs Catholic, Shia vs Sunni, pagan vs Christian, or Jew vs Gentile, i.e. warring tribes with their own mythologies, mysticism, archetypes, apocalyptic visions, traditions, taboos, totems, etc.

I am generally in favor of “peace among tribes” in the sense of not wanting any single “tribe” to have a monopoly or excessive concentration of power, or to rule tyrannically over any other tribe.
On the economic questions, I’m an “anarchist without adjectives” which initially signified a hybrid of the classical schools of anarchist economic thought (mutualism, individualism, collectivism, communism, syndicalism, and geoism). However, I am not a universalist, which means I accept the legitimacy of other kinds of anarchism (including anarchist economics) as well, including those which were originally not under the AWA umbrella, ranging from Rothbardianism and “anarcho-objectivism” to the range of schools of libertarian socialism and left-libertarianism.

The main weaknesses I have seen in anarchism at the present time are these:

1. Failure to have a plan concerning how to accommodate the contending schools of anarchism following the decline of the state and global capitalism.

2. Failure to have a plan for the peaceful co-existence of anarchists and non-anarchists to the greatest degree possible following the decline.

3. Failure to have a strategy to get “from here to there.” I actually don’t favor a single monolithic strategy as a much as a full spectrum of strategies (“Let a thousand flowers bloom”) but I do think there needs to be some kind of meta-strategy that is focusing on destroying the global system, irrespective of what the most localized or sectionalized strategies may be.

4. Failure to establish a “hierarchy of priorities” that ranks targets of action in a rational way. I’d argue anti-imperialism should come first (particularly for those of us in the US, the world’s leading imperialist power), followed by the struggle against the state itself, followed by economic struggles, followed by social and cultural questions, with their being room for disagreement on many of these things as well. Many anarchists seem to have the order of priorities largely in reverse of what I would recommend.

About 20 years ago I came to the position that the anti-state left in the US should focus primarily on overthrowing the US imperial system i.e. revolution in the “belly of the beast” (Che Guevara) or the “mother country of the empire” (Black Panthers). The natural allies of such an effort would be haters of the USG from across the political and cultural spectrum, from sovereign citizens, militiamen, and survivalists, to urban street gangs, to rebellious privileged class youth (from what are now called “incels” to goth to gamers to whatever). In a scenario like that, the Left would have the upper hand because the Left is dominant in large cities and heavily populated areas (with a slight cultural majority at well).

I’ve “courted” the full range of anti-USG right-wing sectors, viewing them all the same way I view, for example, the Church of Scientology, i.e. all of them are small enough to be individually irrelevant and non-threatening, but collectively large enough to boost the ranks of the anti-state movement considerably while remaining individually containable (I’d say the same thing about the full range of “cults” that I would say about the full range of the fringe right-wing or the M-L or M-L-M fringe left).

The fight against the USG is paramount, IMO, because the USG is not only the government of American but of much of the world, and also the world’s leading killer. We Americans are the new Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia in the realm of foreign policy (though I don’t think that’s true in domestic policy). That’s why anti-imperialism should be our first concern, IMO, along with standard anarchist concerns about the concentration of power.

National Anarchism: An Explanation Reply

An summary of the political philosophy of national anarchism (developed by writers such as Troy Southgate and Keith Preston), its fundamentals, along with its association with panarchy and pan-secessionism. To clarify, national anarchism isn’t just a white person’s thing. National anarchist communities can be made up of any ethnic and racial composition they want. People of all races, ancestral types, should embrace national anarchism for their tribes.

Citations:

PIERRE-JOSEPH PROUDHON: SELF-GOVERNMENT AND THE CITIZEN-STATE http://library.libertarian-labyrinth…. Why Pan-Secessionism? https://attackthesystem.com/2008/06/0… Etymological origins of the term “nation” https://www.etymonline.com/word/nation Multiple definitions of a nation https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dict… National-Anarchist Movement Conference 2017: A Summary https://attackthesystem.com/2017/07/1… National-Anarchist Manifesto. PART 4: COMMUNITY AGAINST THE STATE http://www.national-anarchist.net/201… PART 5: RACIAL SEPARATISM OR MIXED TRIBES? http://www.national-anarchist.net/201… Panarchy | Paul-Emile de Puydt (1860) https://www.panarchy.org/depuydt/1860… Definition of Hierarchism https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dic… Introduction to national anarchism (in French) http://national-anarchisme.hautetfort…

The Conservative Anarchist Solution 3

This is the transcript of a talk I gave to the H.L. Mencken Club on November 9, 2019.

By Keith Preston

When it comes to questions of strategy, it is important to base one’s approach on a reasonable estimation of the probable circumstances one will be facing in the future.

I constantly hear claims that there will be a civil war at some point, or an apocalyptic revolution, or a coup, or the election of a populist leader that will set everything straight.

But the probable future of the United States will be something more like what is actually happening on the West Coast at present. In the future, the United States will increasingly start to resemble a Latin American nation in terms of demographics, socioeconomic class structures, and political characteristics.

Many people on the Right tend to focus on the demographic angle, and it is certainly true that the US is experiencing a demographic transformation in the sense that in the future there will be no ethnic majority, but merely a collection of minorities.

However, just as important is the fact that class divisions continue to widen in the US. The gap between rich and poor is the widest it has been since the 1920s, and there is no evidence this will change in the foreseeable future. I would argue that the widening class divisions probably have dozens of causes rather than any singular cause, but it is an issue that is just as important as the demographic issue.

At present, California is starting to look like what a traditional so-called “Third World” model society looks like. In Third World societies, and traditional societies generally, class structures are such that the very rich live in opulent luxury, with a relatively small middle class of ruling class functionaries, and masses of workers and poor people. That is the picture that is emerging in California.

Certain areas of California are among the wealthiest in the nation. There is also a middle class and upper middle class of professionals, tech workers, public sector workers, bureaucrats, and corporate managerial personnel, but what Americans traditionally think of as the conventional working to middle class is shrinking in size, and the ranks of the poor, including those experiencing Third World or Fourth World levels of poverty, are growing. For example, some areas of California have poverty levels that approximate those of the Congo. California cities have a massive homeless population of the kind normally associated with Latin America or South Asia. Certain medieval diseases like typhus and leprosy are making a comeback among the poor in California as well.

It has been said in the past that California is the bellwether of the nation, and I suspect that will prove to be true in this scenario as well. Increasingly, US politics is starting to resemble Third World politics with openly demagogic figures on both the left and right beginning to appear. In Third World politics, it is not uncommon for open socialists and communists as well as right-wing extremists to get elected to parliaments. Corruption, nepotism, ethnic spoils systems, institutionalized bribery, and flagrant incompetence are not exceptions but the expected norm.  We see plenty of examples of this happening in the United States as well.

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William Godwin: The First Modern Anarchist Reply

By Keith Preston

Few thinkers personified the intellectual culture of the Enlightenment to a greater degree than the English political philosopher and novelist, William Godwin. In 1793, Godwin published his most influential work, An Enquiry Concerning Political Justice and Its Influence on Morals and Happiness, which at the time was considered to be one of the most significant literary responses to the events of the French Revolution, along with the works of Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine. True to Enlightenment ideals, Godwin suggested that human beings were born as a Lockean tabula rasa, and that education, along with improved social and political conditions, could result in significant steps toward human perfectibility. Such an evolved condition of human existence would render the state unnecessary as individuals would be inspired by reason to act on behalf of what was in the best interest of the community. Similarly, Godwin envisioned that an enlightened society would be less in thrall to vices such as greed and acquisitiveness, and a more equitable distribution of resources would result. The classical theoretician of anarchist-communism Peter Kropotkin would, more than a century later, suggest that Godwin was in fact the first modern proponent of anarchist-communism.

Family, Marriages and Children

            From a historical perspective, Godwin is today recognized more for his famous family members than for his political ideas. His first wife was Mary Wollstonecraft, a pioneer feminist who produced the classic work A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, which was published in 1792, and argued for the extension of the Enlightenment idea of “natural rights” to include women as well as men. Wollstonecraft died in 1797 due to complications from giving birth to the couple’s daughter, Mary. However, Mary would later become famous both for her marriage to the Romance poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, and for her authorship of the novel Frankenstein, widely considered to be a pioneer work in the genres of horror and science fiction.  Clearly, Godwin’s family exercised considerable influence in British literary circles during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. Godwin himself also produced a pioneer work in the genre of the “thriller” called Things as They Are; or, The Adventures of Caleb Williams, and the family’s literary business, known as the Juvenile Library, also published children’s books as well.

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Reflections on His Goofiness: William Gillis on Positive and Negative Liberty 5

Goofy Gillis has a lengthy interview podcast interview available. Listen here.

Here’s my general take on the content of this interview.

He’s not unintelligent, and much of what he is saying is not “wrong” per se. But I know enough about him to know that his idea of “freedom” amounts to the de facto compulsory universalization of the PC/SJW/Antifa/call-out culture paradigm, although perhaps enforced by extra-legal vigilante violence rather than a conventional state.

His ideology seems to be “Total positive freedom to make unlimited choices resulting in absolute diversity, except for people who might do something I don’t like, such as being ‘reactionary.'” That’s consistent with the nonsense I’ve seen in his Twitter feed.

Technology or no technology, progress or no progress, the evidence from all relevant fields shows that humans are naturally tribal in a social context, and individual values are rooted in their psychological and genetic proclivities. Where there is “freedom,” there is “diversity.” But diversity often includes the existence of polar opposites.

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Trump comes out against Bitcoin, other Cryptocurrencies, and “Unregulated Crypto Assets” 6

The Spectrum and History of Anarchy w/ Keith Preston Reply

A recent interview with the Free Man Beyond the Wall podcast. Listen here.

Pete invited Keith Preston to come on the show to talk about the history of anarchists, the different schools and a look back in history to see if anarchism “has ever been tried.”

Keith has been an anarchist for over 25 years and has devoted much of that time to its historical study.

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What about the Workers? A Libertarian Answer Reply

By Sean Gabb

I was called this morning by the BBC. It wanted me to comment on the claims that Sports direct, a chain of sports clothing shops, mistreats its workers – keeping them on zero-hours contracts, sometimes not paying them even the minimum wage, scaring them out of going sick, generally treating them like dirt. Would I care to go on air to defend the right of employers to behave in this way? I am increasingly turning down invitations to go on radio and television, and this was an invitation I declined. I suggested the researcher should call the Adam Smith Institute. This would almost certainly provide a young man to rhapsodise about the wonders of the free market. My own answer would be too complex for the average BBC presenter to understand, and I might be cut off in mid-sentence.

Here is the answer I would have taken had I been invited to speak on a conservative or libertarian radio station on the Internet.

First, it is a bad idea to interfere in market arrangements. Sports Direct is in competition with other firms. Making it pay more to its workers, or to give them greater security of employment, would require it to raise prices and make it less competitive. A general campaign against zero-hour contracts and low pay would raise unemployment. In even a reasonably open market, factors of production are paid the value of their marginal product. Establish a minimum price for labour above its clearing price, and those workers whose employment contributes less than this to total revenue will be laid off. If I felt more inclined than I do, I could produce a cross diagram to show this. The downward sloping curve would show diminishing marginal productivity, the upward the supply of labour at any given price. The point of intersection would show the clearing price. Draw a horizontal line above this clearing price to show the minimum allowed price, and you can two further lines from where this intersects the curves to create a box showing the unemployment that would result. I leave that to your imagination. Or here is a representation I have found on-line:

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A History of Decentralization 5

aragon.black
Jun 11, 2019
14 minute read (full)

First let’s decentralize history…

This month’s thematic has been a real challenge for us and raised many questions in our minds. Why? The history of decentralization is complex and non-linear. But most of all, it is difficult to be considered from an objective point of view, stripped of the predominance of the state.

Talking about decentralization leads obviously to discuss about centralization; to find the ghosts of history, to cross-reference the victories and failures of social-political movements; to discover some contemporary alternatives to the generalized centralization of our lives. Unless we consider that a technology is neutral, in the end, we cannot talk about decentralization without talking about governancesuffragepolitics or apoliticismautonomyorganization… and the dominant model of centralization: the nation-state. Still, if a very vast literature and documentation concerns rise of states, it must be stated that the one granted to the opposite, i. e. the absence of a state, is almost non-existent. More…

Freedom of Association-Yes, Ethnic Cleansing-No: Solidarity with All Enemies of the State Reply

In my perfect world, there would be nothing but voluntary communities, and particular communities could be as open or closed as their members wanted. I tend to think that for utilitarian reasons within the current state-capitalist system there needs to be at least some limitation on both immigration and discrimination. I don’t know that throwing open the borders and saying, “Come one, come all” would have a happy ending, just like I don’t think anyone’s freedom is being abridged when WalMart can’t put a sign out front saying, “No Coloreds Allowed.” Virtually the entire spectrum of the ruling class and the state benefits from mass immigration, i.e. more scab labor employers, more clients for social services bureaucrats, more constituents for ethnic lobbies, more voters for political parties, more students for the education bureaucracy, new parishioners for organized religion, etc. But immigration enforcement also benefits other state/ruling class interests, i.e. the federal police state, companies that get state contracts to build walls/detention centers, the prison-industrial complex, capitalist corporations that profit from prison labor, retrograde Republican politicians using immigration as political vehicle, etc. It’s a win-win situation for the power elite, and lose-lose for everyone else.

I don’t think it’s a Left/Right issue per se. Immigrant detention centers didn’t start with Trump. They’ve been around for quite a while spanning Democratic and Republican administrations. I’d argue immigrant detention centers are part of the wider apparatus of the police state/state legal racket/prison-industrial complex. So people in immigrant detention centers are in the same boat as people in jails, prisons, places of involuntary psychiatric incarceration, juvenile detention, etc, etc,etc Traditionally, the US prison system has overlapped with the older slave system as well as things like Jim Crow. I’d argue it’s also something that transcends boundaries of race, class, gender, politics, etc even if those categories aren’t irrelevant either. But the same traditional conservative vs traditional progressive dichotomy that defines US politics today has been in place for over a century with swings back and forth in different directions.

Progressives have exercised a great deal of influence over US society since around 1900 (Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were Progressives, for God’s sake). Progressives have long been involved in facilitating authoritarian state policies (eugenics, racism, and drug and alcohol prohibition among them). During the course of the 20th century progressives did an about face on race, immigration, homosexuality, the “sexual revolution,” etc. But they’ve still favored authoritarian state policies in many other areas. For example, the modern “war on drugs” has been supported just as zealously by liberal politicians and civil rights leaders as conservative Republicans and the religious right, and the war on drugs is to a large degree the foundation/cornerstone of the modern American police state (though there are obviously many other contributing factors).

Most progressives are not anarchists or libertarians (left or right) and don’t claim to be. They accept the supposed legitimacy of the state, state law, state penal institutions, etc. They just don’t like it when these things are used against people they like (illegal immigrants, environmental protestors, etc) as opposed to people they don’t like (the Bundy clan, corporate executives, gun nuts, racists, etc). But given their acceptance of these things, they don’t really have a principled argument against the statist argument that says, “If you don’t want to go to jail, don’t break the law” or “The law is the law. If you don’t like the law, you can work to change it not break it” or “These people chose to break the law and choices have consequences.” Once the legitimacy of the state, state law, police, prisons, etc. is conceded, I don’t know that there is a principled counterargument that can be raised that doesn’t amount to special pleading.

Of course, my view is that anarchists and libertarians who wish to be consistent should stand in solidarity will ALL persons being held by the police state and prison-industrial complex (and, yes, that includes serial killers on death row, racist hate criminals, scumbag corporate executives, pedos, and every other kind of creep imaginable as well illegal immigrants, drug users/sellers, sex workers, “consensual criminals,” self-defenders, “survival criminals,” vagrants, etc). The struggle against the state/ruling class/power elite/globalism/imperialism/capitalism/Zionism is not a “Nice People Only” club.

Pledging Allegiance to the Divided States of America 4

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

I’m a pessimist because of intelligence, but an optimist because of will-Antonio Gramsci

When the individual’s behavior and consciousness get hooked to a routine sequence of external actions, he is a dead robot, and it is time for him to die and be reborn. Time to “drop out”, “turn on”, and “tune in.”-Timothy Leary

America, the indispensable nation. That old jingoistic canard gets tossed around like confetti in this country, while the rest of the world rolls their collective eyes and crack their collective knuckles. According to patriotic lore, America is some beige, color-blind, miracle designed by the greatest white philosophers since Socrates to free the world from its backwards indigenous ways with the magic of global capitalism. Naturally, this is all bullshit. The kind of sad pep-talk a date-rapist gives himself in the mirror before showering his glamour muscles in Axe body spray. There is absolutely nothing miraculous about America but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t exceptional.

America is an exceptionally cruel experiment in the outer reaches of colonial social engineering. We are a nation defined by the two greatest holocausts in recorded history, spanning three continents and an entire hemisphere. America as we know it was founded by an ambitious collection of European super-colonialists who found themselves and their nations increasingly depleted of the wealth they accumulated from the Crusades. So they traveled the seas in search of greener pastures to irrigate with more dark-skinned blood. They found their sainted killing fields of Shangri-La in the New World and with the superiority of their steel, they decided to take the Americas by force and slaughter anyone who stood in their way. But with an entire hemisphere half empty of its indigenous inhabitants, these European overlords found themselves with too much work for their feeble bourgeois fingers to handle, so they filled their new colonies with shiploads of slaves pilfered from the jungles of Africa to build a nation on their scarred shoulders, murdering millions more in the process and permanently hobbling another entire continent.

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