I almost never endorse politicians. I generally regard all elected officials, from the President to dogcatchers, as employees of the real ruling class (C. Wrights Mills’ “power elite”). Voting is merely participating in the king’s coronation rituals in a way that conveys legitimacy on the state. However, there are times when political campaigns can be used for propagandistic purposes. Ron Paul’s presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012 are examples, and Tulsi Gabbard’s present campaign is another potential example.
I doubt she will get the nomination. The Democrapic party will either find a way to block that from happening (i.e. cheating), or she will simply fail to do well in the primaries because, in my experience, most of the kinds of people who are likely to be voters in the Democratic primaries are not people who consider foreign policy to be a primary issue. What passes for “the Left” in the US is, with some exceptions, pathetic when it comes to international relations. They’re far more interested in idpol, expanding the welfare state, and environmentalism (i.e. advancing the interests of the left-wing of the First World middle class). However, a Tulsi vs. Trump contest in 2020 would be a highly interesting turn of events for a range of reasons.
I think she would actually do better in a general election than in the primaries, though I don’t know if she could beat Trump or not. I think not because not only are there the standard issues like incumbent’s advantage but also because, given her views on international relations, the overlord class would pour money into the Republicans to keep Tulsi out of the White House, and the media would work overtime to ensure her defeat. Notice the only time the media (other than FOX) ever said anything good about Trump were the two times he attacked Syria. It would be a highly interesting and comical situation because the political class, capitalist class, deep state, media, etc would suddenly rally behind Trump after years of endless hating on him because they would view him as objectionable though more easily contained and less immediately threatening to the empire’s interests. It would be a true “memory hole” moment. Such a situation would also greatly exacerbate the cleavage between neoliberals (most of whom would move to Trump) and progressives (most of whom would stay with Tulsi). Certain dividing lines would become clearer among the center (radical center vs. establishment center) and right (neocons vs nativists vs populists vs non-interventionists) as well.
Of course, even if she won Gabbard would be constrained by the wider ruling class, political, and deep state apparatus. At best, she would be another Jimmy Carter, i.e. a moderate who is a generally decent person but essentially unable to maneuver within the framework of a system of overwhelming opposition by elites. The “Trump hate” that has been piled on by the wider ruling class is nothing compared to the “Tulsi hate” that would come about if she were elected (the same would be true of a Republican with similar views).
Any US president who seriously moved against the interests of the oligarchy would meet the same fate as Mosadegh, Arben, Suharto, Diem, Sihanouk, Allende, Saddam, Qaddafi, so many others.
A good discussion of how the corporate imperialists circle the wagons around anyone with even moderately anti-interventionist views. US foreign policy is essentially a Roman-like imperialism that is committed to large-scale massacres as a matter of policy. The Democrats and Republicans are fine with this, and committed to preserving it. Most progressive liberals and SJWs consider anti-imperialism to be just another issue, or a matter of indifference. Even a supposed “far leftist” like Alexander Reid-Ross-Podhoretz-Kristol is more concerned about Russo-Assadist conspiracies on behalf of the Learned Elders of Thule than opposing the US empire of corpses.
Yep. This is a pretty good analysis. It’s also important to recognize that political correctness/totalitarian humanism is not just a Left/Right conflict. It’s also an intra-Left conflict as well, with all kinds of left-wing factors shitting all over themselves to out-PC each other, or to accuse each other of some kind of heresy. ATS is a revolutionary left perspective for those who don’t give a flying fuck about this stuff, and refuse to play along with it.
I’m not a fan of Tucker Carlson’s Trumpism, but a “no apologies, no capitulation” policy is how you handle the SJWs.
The problem I have with figures like Bernie and Alexandria is that they’re not radicals. They’re simply representatives of the left-wing of the First World middle/upper middle class, pushing issues that are important that socioeconomic demographic. Unlike the traditional American middle class (now the right-wing of the middle class) they don’t necessarily see the state as impeding their upward mobility by means of taxes, business regulations, etc. Instead, the left-wing of the middle class represents upwardly mobile members of traditional outgroups like ethnic minorities, feminist women, gays, etc (hence, the fanatical emphasis on idpol), their aesthetic interests (hence, their interest in environmentalism), their desire to be protected from the “dangerous classes” (hence, their fanatical emphasis on gun control, and their fear of guns in the hands of icky rural rednecks and inner-city brothas). They see the state as a means of upward mobility by means of public sector employment, social security, free schools and healthcare, anti-discrimination laws, etc.
I have no time for any of this. I am (generally speaking) anti-imperialist, Third Worldist, and pro-indigenous in international relations, and pro-lumpenproletarian in First World class relations. Historically, the Right was the party of the traditional elite, the Center was the party of the middle class, the Left was the party of the respectable working class, and the Anarchists were the party of the lumpenproletariat. I stand with the latter.
A great discussion of where libertarianism and the traditional Right differ and where they agree. The discussion of the work of Hans Hermann Hoppe is also quite good.
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
Jimi Hendrix was a n*ggaJesus Christ and grandma, too Jackson Pollock was a nigga Nigga, nigga, nigga, nigga Nigga, nigga, nigga Outside of society, they’re waitin’ for me
Outside of society, if you’re looking That’s where you’ll find me Outside of society, they’re waitin’ for me Outside of society
-Rock n Roll Nigger, Patti Smith
Are there any niggers here tonight? Could you turn on the house lights, please, and could the waiters and waitresses just stop serving, just for a second? And turn off this spot. Now what did he say? “Are there any niggers here tonight?” I know there’s one nigger, because I see him back there working. Let’s see, there’s two niggers. And between those two niggers sits a kike. And there’s another kike— that’s two kikes and three niggers. And there’s a spic. Right? Hmm? There’s another spic. Ooh, there’s a wop; there’s a polack; and, oh, a couple of greaseballs. And there’s three lace-curtain Irish micks. And there’s one, hip, thick, hunky, funky, boogie. Boogie boogie. Mm-hmm.
The anti-Vietnam War and anti-draft movements of the 1960s and 1970s are a shining example of what I would consider to be an anarchist success. No, the government wasn’t abolished. But the most powerful state in history was forced to withdraw from a war of imperialist aggression by means of a combination of illegality (draft resistance), civil disobedience, mass protests, riots, civilian armed struggle (there were literally thousands of bombings in the US during that time, as well as armed confrontations between feds/pigs and militant organizations), and passive resistance, mutiny, and “fragging” (assassinating officers) by soldiers.
Unlike Tim Pool, who is a centrist vlogger, I am very appreciative of the divisive and disruptive effect that supposed “far left” Democrats are having on their party, just as I am very appreciative of the effect that Trumpism is having on the Republicans. The neocon/neoliberal duopoly is being forced into a defensive position. Interestingly, in one of Pool’s recent videos he describes SJWs as a religious movement, i.e. the Left’s version of theocratic social conservatives, which is the position that I (and others on the margins) have been advancing for years.
Sex trafficking hysteria is the new “War on Drugs.” Like the war on drugs, virtually every category of do-gooder is getting duped once again.
By Elizabeth Nolan Brown
It’s been nearly a week since Florida police started bragging about their big “human trafficking” bust, an operation that pulled in professional football owner Robert Kraft, more than 150 other men, and several Chinese immigrant women associated with Asian spas in Palm Beach County. Police say the spas were fronts for prostitution, that the workers there were victims of sex trafficking, and that their six-month long investigation was time well spent.
Six months is a long time, however, and it’s hard to reconcile the cops’ timeline with their heroic rhetoric. If the women employed at these businesses were really the victims of “modern slavery,” why did police take six months to get them out of that situation? Why did it require repeat intimate undercover visits and building misdemeanor prostitution charges against all sorts of random men before these “heroes” decided to intervene?
A reader at AttacktheSystem.Com nails it:
“I’ve noticed more and more folks on the current right becoming anti-war (at least, selectively anti-war for pragmatic reasons, though some have begun to sound like full-on peaceniks). If nothing else I guess that reflects neocons’ losing hold on the GOP.
Which raises another interesting question. What is the future of the Republican Party proper? As you pointed out yesterday in your Coming Dystopia piece, and in the past, the kind of Republicans that make up Trump’s base are largely a (literally) dying breed. And the more time passes the more I agree with your assessment that the new “conservatives” will essentially be neoliberals who reject progressive-style economic proposals and/or some of the excesses of SJWism.
The future of the US, or the future “post-US” or the “future of the Western world” or “the future of the global order, will be rule by the techno-oligarch/new clerisy alliance, where neoliberals constitute “conservatism” and progressives/SJWs constitute “liberalism.” Everyone, including the historic WASP culture, will be a minority. We will have a highly stratified Latin American-style class system with the Rainbow Culture as its self-legitimating state ideology. The emerging ruling class will also have a world empire, a military industrial complex and a police state that it will have inherited from previous regimes.
For 25-30 years, I have said that the main political issues in the USA are imperialism, widening class divisions, and use of the wars on drugs, crime, and (later) terrorism to create a domestic police state. Regrettably, most of liberal and left opinion during this time has been more focused on “identity” issues and (to a lesser degree) environmentalism or expanding the welfare state instead.
We are seeing the consequences of that now. The US has killed millions of people in …the past 20 years with wars of aggression. Class divisions are the widest they have been in a century, and incarceration rates are setting world records. In fact, it’s often been the far right (paleocons, libertarians, sovereign citizens, isolationist xenophobes) who are more in tune on many of these issues than liberal and left opinion.
By Nathan Mattise
AUSTIN, Texas—More than three months have passed since a warrant (PDF) initially went out for Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson’s arrest. That document detailed Wilson’s alleged sexual assault against a female “child younger than 17 years of age” whom he reportedly solicited through the website SugarDaddyMeet.com. Last Friday, December 28, the State of Texas finally formally indicted (PDF) Wilson. The 3D printed gun advocate now faces multiple charges: four counts of sexual assault of a child, two charges of indecency with a child by contact, and two charges of indecency with a child by exposure.
These charges are all second-degree felonies punishable by up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
Wilson’s two previously scheduled initial court appearances in November and December had each been pushed back, as often happens in cases still waiting on a formal indictment. This recent filing may make it more likely that the newest tentative date (scheduled for early February) will occur, meaning Wilson’s team would need to finally appear at the Travis County Courthouse.
All western European countries have hate-speech laws. In 2008, the eu adopted a framework decision on “Combating Racism and Xenophobia” that obliged all member states to criminalize certain forms of hate speech. On the other side of the Atlantic, the Supreme Court of the United States has gradually increased and consolidated the protection of hate speech under the First Amendment. The European concept of freedom of expression thus prohibits certain content and viewpoints, whereas, with certain exceptions, the American concept is generally concerned solely with direct incitement likely to result in overt acts of lawlessness.
Yet the origin of hate-speech laws has been largely forgotten. The divergence between the United States and European countries is of comparatively recent origin. In fact, the United States and the vast majority of European (and Western) states were originally opposed to the internationalization of hate-speech laws. European states and the U.S. shared the view that human rights should protect rather than limit freedom of expression.
Rather, the introduction of hate-speech prohibitions into international law was championed in its heyday by the Soviet Union and allies. Their motive was readily apparent. The communist countries sought to exploit such laws to limit free speech.
As Americans, Europeans and others contemplate the dividing line emerging on the extent to which free speech should be limited to criminalize the “defamation of religions” and “Islamophobia,” launched by the member states of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (oic) since 1999, they should bear this forgotten history in mind. However well-intended—and its initial proponents were anything but well-intended—the Western acceptance of hate-speech laws severely limits the ability of liberal democracies to counter attempts to broaden the scope of hate-speech laws under international human rights law, with potentially devastating consequences for the preservation of free speech.
“It’s interesting how figures like Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez are labelled as “communists” for wanting the economic policies of the 1950s (when a third of the US labor force was unionized and the top income tax bracket was 91%), and the Trumpians/MAGA hats are considered “fascists” for wanting immigration policies that are to the left of Eisenhower’s in the 1950s. Whatever the USA was in the 1950s, it was hardly fascist or communist.
In most countries with a democratically elected government (roughly 60 to 75 percent of the world’s nations), open socialists, communists, fascists, nationalists, fundamentalists, Greens, quasi-anarchists, animal rightsers, populists, and all kinds of assorted weirdos regularly run for and get elected to all kinds of stuff. That’s how “democracy” is theoretically supposed to function.
The USA has one of the most tightly controlled and narrowly constrained electoral systems in the world. Some of the most retrograde Latin American nations have a similar system. The different factions of the oligarchy (mostly the traditional Chamber of Commerce types vs the newer techno-oligarchs and urban professional class) put forward their bought candidates as quasi-celebrities, and the role of the media is that of a pro-wrestling announcer, i.e. to pretend like it’s all a real contest as opposed to a staged theatrical production.” – Keith Preston
“Its a rigged game and a charade, and people are starting to see it, even if they cannot describe it in the political language that you just did. Parliamentary systems are better because even outsider candidates can pick up a few seats. The US is actually a Plutocratic, Quasi Totalitarian State with Democratic façades. The electoral system and the liberal and conservative wings in the US are totally bought off, and the corporate and national security state elements actually run the country, with the political class being basically their employees from the President on down. Freedom of Speech is no threat, the US population is so brain benumbed and ignorant, repeating all the nonsense they hear from Fox News and MSNBC that nothing they think, say, or do can pose any kind of challenge to the system. OTOH people are disgusted with government, corporations, banks, the government, and the establishment parties, they no they are getting screwed and the system is scared. So there is tactic of inculcating strife between various groups in society over race, political views, sexism, LGBT, etc. Cultural Liberalism as a divide and conquer strategy. Economic misery us breaking down American society, the fissures are everywhere. It will get so bad with drug use, suicide, nihilism, mass killings, mental illness, that society will no longer function normally anymore, and it will collapse.”-David Alexander
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
I’ve long considered myself to be a feminist, even before I realized I was trans. It’s always seemed like basic common sense to me that people shouldn’t be defined by the contents of their genitalia but by the quality of their character. Regardless of where you stand on rape culture or abortion or Hillary goddamn Clinton, that’s really what it all comes down to. That and realizing the basic fact that our society treats women and anyone perceived as feminine like second class citizens at best. If you ask most people, left, right, or center, on these basic realities of American life, they’ll generally (if begrudgingly) agree with you. Then why is feminism still such a controversial subject? Try casually mentioning it on almost any given message board and count the seconds before a dozen trolls threaten to rape and gut you and leave you for dead by the highway. Seriously, fucking try it. I have. The very word feminism seems to bring the worst out of people online.
Not exactly the kind of left/right coalition I would envision, but you’ve got to crawl before you can run, I guess.
By Matthew Rozsa
We have to put Salon’s interview with Carlson, a top-rated prime-time host and commentator on Fox News, in the proper context. That context would be the Overton window, a concept developed at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy by Joseph P. Overton:
Imagine, if you will, a yardstick standing on end. On either end are the extreme policy actions for any political issue. Between the ends lie all gradations of policy from one extreme to the other. The yardstick represents the full political spectrum for a particular issue. The essence of the Overton window is that only a portion of this policy spectrum is within the realm of the politically possible at any time. Regardless of how vigorously a think tank or other group may campaign, only policy initiatives within this window of the politically possible will meet with success.
That doesn’t exactly describe my conversation with Carlson, but it provides a useful frame. In any society at a given time, certain political ideas are deemed to fall outside the realm of the acceptable. Sometimes that’s healthy, if it drives totalitarian ideologies to the margins, but it can be harmful when it stifles meaningful dialogue.
Jimmie Dore has an interesting take on this.
Mr. Antifa Intellectual serves up the “Anarcho-MSNBC” line. This kind of stuff is why I started attacking anarcho-social democrats and totalitarian humanists so vehemently 20 years ago. Regrettably, a substantial tendency has developed among “anarchists” that opposes regional or localized illiberalism more than it opposes imperialism, opposes marginal right-wing extremists more than it opposes the power elite, opposes redneck ruckus makers like the Bundys more than it opposes the FBI and ATF, opposes social conservatives more than it opposes the state itself, and (probably) opposes the reality show president more than it opposes the actual national security state.
I suppose they’re entitled to their opinion. Unlike many anarchists, I consider freedom of opinion and freedom of association to be paramount. But, seriously, how are these kinds of folks any different from the Democratic Party?