I generally criticize the Left more than the Right for three main reasons: 1) fanatical leftism has a very strong grip on much of the anarchist milieu; 2) the Left is a rising force while the Right is a declining force, and 3) a co-opted form of cultural leftism is being incorporated into the self-legitimizing ideology of the ruling class. However, far too many former leftists who become disgusted with SJWs and similar others have embraced all kinds of “right-wing” nonsense, e.g. Trumpism in the mainstream, neo-fascism on the margins, etc. In order to criticize authoritarian leftism, all we need are the historical anarchist critics of such, not Dennis Prager, Dave Rubin, Stefan Molyneaux, or Ben Shapiro and other “leftist to neocon pipelines.”
This article from 40 years ago was a reply to Ernest van den Haag by Ralph Raico. Raico was a classical liberal/libertarian and van den Haag was a former commie turned “right-wing authoritarian” like so many others in William F. Buckley’s circle who changed their political affiliation but not their attitude. This intellectual history is extremely important because it was Buckley’s “commie to reactionary” pipeline that essentially made neoconservatism and therefore figures like George W. Bush possible. This is not to say that there is not much value in the full spectrum of “conservative” or “right-wing” thought. I even wrote a book on such thinkers. But any interests of those kinds should merely be an afterthought that helps “fill the gaps” within the anti-authoritarian paradigm (for example, Carl Schmitt’s analysis of the essence of the state or Edmund Burke’s critique of abstract universalism) in the same way we might borrow selectively from leftist thought (for example, Marx’s class analysis or the Maoist critique of international relations).
By Ralph Raico
This article first appeared in The Libertarian Review for January 1980 under the title “Conservatism on the Run.”
“This is how we win. Bottom Unity. Unity among all anti-government renegades. Hillbillies and inner city black folks have far more in common with each other than we do with either major party or their armed civil servants. We’re all poor and pissed, and we’re all getting ripped off by a top unity of big government and big business. Together, we have them outnumbered, outsmarted, and outgunned. This is why the managerial class works so damn hard to divide us against each other and against ourselves. They would rather see a race war than a class war because a class war is one war they can’t get rich off of.” -Nicky Reid
I am briefly mentioned in this article.
By Paul Gottfried
Although I have spent much of my scholarly life warning against inappropriate comparisons between Nazis or fascists and the pet peeves of academics and journalists, I myself am now using the F-word (as in fascist) or really the N-word (as in Nazi) with growing regularity.
The antifascist left, about which I have just finished writing a book, resembles the Nazis in a striking way, particularly when these earlier advocates of violence were on their way to power. I am drawing this parallel while being fully aware of the qualifications that I am constrained to offer.
An audio reading of Thomas Sowell’s biographical sketch of Karl Marx. He sounds like one of today’s Antifa or SJWs, a spoiled bourgie kid who becomes a petty loser as an adult.
The godfather of modern anarchism criticizes Marx as a doctrinaire authoritarian and secularized religious fundamentalist. Does this sound familiar? The historic anarchist critics of Marxism and other forms of authoritarian leftism is who our contemporary critics of PC, wokeness, cancel culture, etc. should be paying attention to, and not idiots like the various gurus of Conservatism, Inc.
And to think the RCP was once the US allies of the Shining Path. Contra the Washington Times, I would argue that the fact that so many on the supposed “hard left” such as Bob Avakian, Angela Davis, and Bill Ayers have endorsed Biden out of Trump Derangement Syndrome most certainly does not indicate that Biden has somehow magically moved to the far left and become a revolutionary Marxist. What is means is that nearly all of the farce that passes for the “American Left” is a collection of weenies, chumps, losers, dumbasses, dumbfucks, and absolute fucking idiots. What it also means is that classical anarchists are absolutely correct when they refer to Marxists as merely the “left-wing of capital.” Seriously, Chairman Bob, is Sunsara’s pussy really that good?
By Stephan Dinan
For Bob Avakian, founder and leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party USA, this year’s election is actually an easy call: The need to stop President Trump is so overwhelming that he has no qualms about backing Democrat Joseph R. Biden.
The far left usually finds itself at election time grappling with tricky questions about lesser-of-two-evils, and fears of boosting what they see as a corrupt Democratic Party. But that’s not happening this year.
Ten years ago, I identified what I considered to be the “ten core demographics” that proponents of the ideas we discuss here at ATS will have to reach in order to eventually find the Holy Grail. The original piece is available here. It is interesting to evaluate the status of each of these ten demographics (which are really collections of sub-demographics) a decade later in light of the current uprising. Here is where things seem to stand. The parts in italics are from the original piece.
This interview contains my general take on the great lumpenproletarian cultural revolution of 2020 from a Howard Cosell perspective.
The Neocon Review attacks Biden’s embrace of totalitarian humanism. Many of them are probably secretly hoping Biden will get elected, and worry that Biden will push centrist voters to the right with this stuff. Ever since the Trump era began, the neocons have been divided between those who are Never Trumpers and those who embrace Trumpism. The Never Trumper neocons like Kristol and Will think he is too isolationist on foreign policy, too protectionist for the tastes of the neocons’ corporate donors on trade, and too xenophobic (thereby depriving corporate donors of foreign labor, while alienating suburban centrist and urban cosmopolitan Republican voters). The Trumpist Republicans like Horowitz and Prager only care that Trump sucks Bibi Netanyahu’s cock. Evangelotards like David French worry Trump will harm Republican minority outreach efforts. “VD” Hansen figures that at least Trump stands up to the PC crowd and hates Iran. Bennie the Greedster Shapiro seems somewhere in the middle of all of these.
Another interesting fact is that there is not even a hint of any kind of liberal or left ACLU-like civil libertarianism in Biden’s program. His domestic program is just all politically correct statism. He even opposes legalizing marijuana, which a supermajority of Democrats and the majority of the general public supports.
Joe Biden says he wants equality. Who could be against that? But if just declaring yourself in favor of equality were enough, we would not still be arguing about equality in 2020. As always, when politicians talk about inequality, watch your wallet. And in this case, watch the Constitution, too.
In the past week, the Biden campaign has announced plans of Castro-esque length aimed at racial equality and women’s equality. We suppose we should at least welcome Biden’s continued willingness to use that old-fashioned word “women.” But Biden is so stuck in the past that he would pronounce the Equal Rights Amendment already ratified based on state legislative approvals in the 1970s.
This guy Vaush seems to epitomize what I call an “anarcho-social democrat” or “anarcho-Democrat,” an “anarchist” who enthusiastically promotes Bernie Sanders and endorses Biden on “lesser evilism” grounds while claiming everyone on the center-right is a “fascist.”
There already has been. Trumpism from the mainstream (although that’s not why he was elected, his faux populism is why he is prez) and the Alt-Right on the margins. The comments thread for this is interesting. Whenever I mention the idea of peaceful separation, the response I usually get from “both sides” is “But THEY will never leave us alone!” which is probably true in the sense that “both sides” seem to want to dominate every aspect of social, political, and cultural life.
This video makes many valid points, and the speaker’s own YouTube channel has a lot of very good stuff. But it is a grave error to abandon either the SJW/Antifa Left (supposed ) far-left or the (supposed center-left) Democratic Party (“walk away”) only to embrace the Republicans, Trumpism, neocons like Dennis Prager, or the “far-right.” The Republicans are a far-right militarist, imperialist, plutocratic, corporatist, police-carceral statist party that is hopefully being killed off by the farce of Trumpism and cannot die soon enough. Trumpism is a passing carnival freakshow that will leave town soon enough. Neocons like Prager and David Horowitz have made a lucrative industry out of manipulating disillusioned liberals and leftists into becoming neocon/Zionist puppets.
I’ve had fewer personal qualms about working with the far-right because it’s the only place where someone like me who simultaneously criticizes US imperialism, Zionism, capitalism, cops, and social justice warriors is welcome. Some on the far right have good ideas on certain things (the palecons’ opposition to the US empire, right-libertarian anti-statism, the sovereign citizens’ “don’t know when to quit” antigovernmental zeal). Others have dangerous totalitarian ideas (WNs, Nazbols, NS, etc), although they have no more political influence than the Church of Scientology (and probably less influence) which makes the dangers they present largely theoretical, other than some occasional violent crime by a neo-Nazi (which is microscopic compared to all the violent crime there is in the US).
Far more problematic in the immediate sense is the number of liberal or even libertarian-minded people who come to realize that the “PC Left” is, in its more benign forms, merely a reworking of the 19th-century social purity movement within the framework of modern ideologies, or, in its more extreme forms, a reworking of traditional leftist authoritarianism or totalitarianism in the Jacobin-Marxist-Bolshevik-Maoist tradition or, alternatively, a kind of religious extremism similar to Cromwellism or Khomeinism.
Some on the left have complained about the “libertarian to alt-right pipeline” issue, where former libertarians and ancaps have embraced one or another version of the alt-right. During the Ron Paul era, there was an influx of a lot of people, particularly younger people, into the libertarian milieu. Some started pushing what is now called the SJW perspective (“libertarianism plus”), and some of the rightward-leaning ones responded with a “Yikes! WTF?” reaction and went to the then-nascent alt-right (with figures like Stefan Molyneaux being conduits).
As “right-wing” ideas started showing up in libertarian circles (“physical removal”), some left-leaning libertarians responded with a “Yikes! WTF?” reaction and started embracing SJWism. A similar thing has happened in the mainstream with Trump Derangement Syndrome pushing some liberals toward hysteria (“the resistance”), which has had the effect of pushing other liberals toward Trumpism (“walk away,” the Dave Rubin effect, etc). The two videos below are an example of the latter. The problem is that none of these perspectives are authentically anti-System. All of the folks who participate in these tendencies are merely hamsters on a wheel.
Following the social media of adherents of all of these perspectives, I rarely see any insights into how the System actually works, or any actual plans to oppose the System effectively. The most left-leaning people are typically regurgitating what they got out of Howard Zinn books that were published decades ago. The most right-leaning people are typically regurgitating what they picked up from edgy YouTubers. And the ones somewhere in the comparable middle have little to say other “Vote like your life depends on it” (puke). Too many people keeping getting trapped in “pipelines” that lead back to where they started from.
The general theory I lean toward is that Trump sent in the fed pigs to try to pull a Nixon and make himself look like a tough guy to his “red state fascist” (Lew Rockwell) base. The Deep State overlords went along with this because they knew he was setting a trap for himself by overplaying his hand. Now that the Nixonian strategy is failing, Trump is doing a pullback. It’s also funny how Mikey the Toady Pence always acts as a go-between re Trump and these joke governors and mayors. Mikey tries to play the role of a Tariq Aziz-wannabe to Trump’s nursery school-level Saddam-wannabe posturing.
By Chris McGreal
The Trump administration is to pull federal paramilitaries out of Portland starting on Thursday in a major reversal after weeks of escalating protests and violence.
Oregon’s governor, Kate Brown, said she agreed to the pullout in talks with Vice-President Mike Pence.
Brown said state and city police officers will replace Department of Homeland Security agents in guarding the federal courthouse that has become the flashpoint for the protests.
“These federal officers have acted as an occupying force, refused accountability, and brought violence and strife to our community,” the governor said. The head of the US homeland security department said agents would stay near the courthouse until they were sure the plan was working.
Donald Trump said the pullout will not begin until the courthouse is protected. “We’re not leaving until they secure their city. We told the governor, we told the mayor: secure your city,” said the president.
But the announcement is a significant retreat by the administration after Trump sent federal forces to Portland at the beginning of July to end months of Black Lives Matter protests he described as having dragged the city into anarchy.
Instead of quelling the unrest, the arrival of paramilitaries fuelled some of the biggest demonstrations since daily protests following the killing of George Floyd, a Black American, by a white police officer in Minneapolis in May.
The situation escalated particularly after agents in camouflage were filmed snatching protesters from the streets in unmarked vans.
The correct strategy for anti-state radicals is to encourage the development and expansion of the libertarian tendencies among the boogaloos, while driving a wedge between them and the “pro-race war” sectors of the far-right in order to marginalize the latter from the wide spectrum of the right-wing opposition. The same approach should be taken with the Antifa, encourage the more seriously anarchistic and redeemable among them, marginalize the Red Guard wannabes.
By Lois Beckett
Men showing up to protests wearing Hawaiian shirts and carrying military-style rifles. Facebook groups full of intense discussions about imminent civil war.
Over the past year, online conversations about the “boogaloo”, an ironic term for a second civil war, have begun to coalesce into the beginnings of an actual movement, according to experts who monitor American extremists. Facebook has designated a network of “boogaloo” groups as a dangerous organization similar to the Islamic State, and banned them from both Facebook and Instagram. At least 15 arrests and five deaths have been publicly linked to “boogaloo” rhetoric, including the murders of two law enforcement officers in California.
But there’s still plenty of confusion over how to accurately label this still-developing ideology. Here’s a guide to what we know, and what we don’t, about the politics of the “boogaloo.”
A standard puff piece from the new clerics at The Guardian. These characters haven’t killed anyone yet because they suck at fighting and don’t know how to use weapons. I don’t know that anyone deserves a pat on the back simply for not being a multiple murderer or being incompetent at criminal assault. Yes, these folks are used as a scapegoat by Trumptards, but that doesn’t mean they are not within the lengthy historical trajectory of left-wing authoritarianism or terrorism.
This is obviously a delicate issue because it is necessary to differentiate anti-authoritarian criticisms of Antifa from Trumptardism, while encouraging the development of non-world dominationist anarchism in opposition to the attempted Maoist co-optation of anarchism by the Antifa.
By Lois Beckett
Donald Trump has made warnings about the threat of antifa and “far-left fascism” a central part of his re-election campaign. But in reality leftwing attacks have left far fewer people dead than violence by rightwing extremists, new research indicates, and antifa activists have not been linked to a single murder in decades.
A new database of nearly 900 politically motivated attacks and plots in the United States since 1994 includes just one attack staged by an anti-fascist that led to fatalities. In that case, the single person killed was the perpetrator.
This story could be true, but either way, this guy could be the Marinus van der Lubbe of 2020. In the future, look for anyone who opposes the system to be attacked as a “white supremacist,” “far-right,” etc, including ultra-leftists, anarchists, communists, Greens, minorities, antiwar activists, etc.
As class divisions continue to dramatically widen, with political and cultural polarization continuing to intensify, it is likely that extremist ideologies with an anti-capital bent will continue to become prevalent on the left and right. Krystal is right when she says the conservatism of the future will look like the Bidenism of today, and that the “Bernie left” is the future of liberalism. But extremist movements outside of that paradigm will likely grow in the future as well.
Prediction: There will eventually be a split on the right between the more effete conservatives and the more lowbrow types. The effete types will also split between those who sound more like CNN and essentially become Democrats, whether de jour or de facto, and those who remain in the GOP as superhawks (the Rich Lowry, Victor Davis Hanson, Jay Nordlinger types). The lowbrow types will split between those who remain neocon lackeys, and those who embrace the further fringes of the right, like the QAnon tendency.
James Lindsay outlines the intellectual trajectory of totalitarian humanism, political correctness, wokeness, cultural Marxism, whatever one wants to call it, pretty thoroughly in this, although I would add more emphasis on 19th century Progressive Christianity and Maoism during the Cultural Revolution period than what he mentions. He focuses on most of the high points: Frankfurt School/critical theory, Herbert Marcuse/repressive tolerance, terrorists like the Weather Underground, and postmodernism/deconstructionism and their antecedents like critical race theory, radical feminism, queer theory, etc. although he doesn’t mention certain strands within the trajectory of privilege theory (e.g. Ted Allen, Peggy McIntosh). More emphasis needs to be placed on the relationship between totalitarian humanism, therapeutism, and scientism as well. One very important point that Lindsay raises in this is that the Marxists are correct when they say totalitarian humanism is a tool being used by the bourgeoisie in order to take the left away from the working class. I’m glad to see him pointing that out.
A political scientist describes the methods the Democrats will eventually use to create a one-party state (which he favors as a “progressive”). The Dutton strategy that was devised in 1970 (co-optation of the cultural left by corporate liberals) is nearly complete half a century later. As soon as the demographic, cultural, economic, and generational change has taken root to the point that the Democrats have a comfortable majority (thereby no longer having to contend with that pesky Electoral College), they will use the methods recommended by David Faris to establish permanent rule: making Puerto Rico and DC into states and creating more states (thereby allowing permanent Democratic domination of the Senate), reenacting Roosevelt’s court-packing scheme, extending voting rights to non-citizens, prisoners, and illegal immigrants, creating more House districts, etc.
The Anti-Jerk Off Club mixes it up with the Hawaiian shirt guys.
During a rally at the Ohio Statehouse, with tensions rising; an altercation broke out during a protest between a member of the <Redacted> Movement (known for their floral hawiian shirts and protesting while armed) and a group of the far-right neo-fascist organization known as the “Proud Boys”. While the BLM organizers were attempting to unite with the rest of their group on the other side of the rally. Due to the antagonizing of the Proud Boys, who were attempting to block the BLM organizers from gathering, the organizers linked up with the <Redacted> bois for a protective escort. While making their way over to the rest of the group, the opposing protest started screaming and shouting distasteful phrases such as: “All lives matter besides black babies!”.
At which point the <Redacted> boi noted in the video began to respond by saying they were being ignorant. One of the BLM organizers began shouting “Black lives matter!” in attempt to drown out the hateful comments from the crowd. The Proud Boys began shoving the <Redacted> boi who then made the strategic call to go back and regroup.