Reflections on Class Conflict Reply

By Keith Preston

I think class is real, and that class conflict is real. The Marxists have a lot of insight into that but I don’t agree with them that class is the determining factor in everything. Vilfredo Pareto had a pretty good critique of the Marxist perspective.

“In Pareto’s view, the Marxist emphasis on the historical struggle between the unpropertied working class — the proletariat — and the property-owning capitalist class is skewed and terribly misleading. History is indeed full of conflict, but the proletariat-capitalist struggle is merely one of many and by no means the most historically important. As Pareto explains:

‘The class struggle, to which Marx has specially drawn attention, is a real factor, the tokens of which are to be found on every page of history. But the struggle is not confined only to two classes: the proletariat and the capitalist; it occurs between an infinite number of groups with different interests, and above all between the elites contending for power. The existence of these groups may vary in duration, they may be based on permanent or more or less temporary characteristics. In the most savage peoples, and perhaps in all, sex determines two of these groups. The oppression of which the proletariat complains, or had cause to complain of, is as nothing in comparison with that which the women of the Australian aborigines suffer. Characteristics to a greater or lesser degree real — nationality, religion, race, language, etc. — may give rise to these groups. In our own day [i.e. 1902] the struggle of the Czechs and the Germans in Bohemia is more intense than that of the proletariat and the capitalists in England.’

Marx’s ideology represents merely an attempt, Pareto believes, to supplant one ruling elite with another, despite Marxist promises to the contrary:

‘The socialists of our own day have clearly perceived that the revolution at the end of the eighteenth century led merely to the bourgeoisie’s taking the place of the old elite. They exaggerate a good deal the burden of oppression imposed by the new masters, but they do sincerely believe that a new elite of politicians will stand by their promises better than those which have come and gone up to the present day. All revolutionaries proclaim, in turn, that previous revolutions have ultimately ended up by deceiving the people; it is their revolution alone which is the true revolution. “All previous historical movements” declared the Communist Manifesto of 1848, “were movements of minorities or in the interest of minorities. The proletarian movement is the self-conscious, independent movement of the immense majority, in the interest of the immense majority.” Unfortunately this true revolution, which is to bring men an unmixed happiness, is only a deceptive mirage that never becomes a reality. It is akin to the golden age of the millenarians: forever awaited, it is forever lost in the mists of the future, forever eluding its devotees just when they think they have it.”

The Marxist idea that the working class is a universal monolith, or that the proletariat everywhere has the same interests, is mistaken. Also the “workers vs capitalists” class conflict isn’t the only class conflict. Today, upper-middle class vs upper-class conflict, working-class vs professional class, upper proletariat vs lower proletariat, petite bourgeois vs wage laborers, “respectable poor” vs the lumpenproletariat are all just as common forms of class conflict.

The “Who’s Most Oppressed?” Pissing Contest Reply

No photo description available.

I would emphasize two main points with this stuff. First, it needs to be recognized that capitalism, communism, and fascism are merely different points on the same triangle, whichever one of these one happens to view the most favorably. Second, the red/blue left/right cultural civil war is a matter of localized conflicts between localized tribes, whichever tribe one belongs to and whichever sides one prefers.

There are many different philosophies, movements, cultures, ideologies, and historical currents that are compatible with, overlap with, or resemble anarchist ideas. There are plenty of what I call “people of the anarchist book” anarchists, “doctrine of the anonymous anarchist” anarchists, or situational/tactical anarchists. Also, fairly significant actual anarchist movements have existed in some surprising places like Russia, China, and Korea in spite of the autocratic traditions of those places.

The main two things I’m interested in are voluntaryism and scale. The larger states become, the larger the populations they dominate, the more imperialistic they become (depending on a variety of factors like wealth and technology). In a post-globalization world, a PC social democratic micronation like Iceland, a communist island like Cuba, or a fascist city-state like Singapore would be acceptable or least tolerable. But we wouldn’t want any of these to become the EU or the modern USA, the USSR, or the Third Reich.

Trump admin sees China as primary enemy Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The administration of US President Donald trump views China as the “primary enemy” amid a growing divide between political and business leaders in the United States over how Washington should treat China’s growing military and economic threat, an American political analyst says.

Keith Preston, director of attackthesystem.com, said some in Washington supported Trump’s ongoing military and economic pressure against Beijing while many others called for less tensions in the relationship.

The divide between the elite became clearer on Friday, when Trump implied that the US central bank chief was a greater “enemy” than Chinese President Xi Jinping.

He made the remark after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell warned the trade war with China is a risk to the US economy.

“We have a very strong dollar and a very weak Fed. I will work ‘brilliantly’ with both, and the US will do great,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “My only question is, who is our bigger enemy, Jay Powell or Chairman Xi?”

Preston told Press TV on Sunday that American corporations relied heavily on China because of cheap labor in the country as well as Beijing’s policy of handing out loans to foreign businesses.

This is while some parts of the US establishment believe the growing trade imbalance between the two sides was hurting the US as it allowed China to boost its economy at America’s expense, Preston added.

“China only has about half the economic power of the United States but the Chinese economy has grown exponentially in recent decades and there are some policymakers and some elites in the United States who are concerned about that and they wish to level this trade imbalance somewhat,” Preston argued.

“Another issue is the fact that China is increasingly viewed [by the US] as a geopolitical rival not only militarily but also economically,” he continued.

The United States is also heavily dependent on China for its military technologies, another factor that has split US officials about the correct approach.

“It is clear that the Trump administration represents a vein of the American that do view China as a primary enemy and wish to take a more hawkish position towards China,” the analyst added.

PressTV-Trump says US central bank chief greater 'enemy' than China

PressTV-Trump says US central bank chief greater ‘enemy’ than ChinaUS President Donald Trump has called Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell a greater “enemy” than Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump lashed out at China on Friday, vowing a quick response to its announcement of new tariffs and ordering US companies to leave the country.

China announced earlier on Friday it would impose new tariffs on US soybeans, lobsters, peanut butter and other imports worth $75 billion in retaliation for Washington’s latest round of punitive duties that take effect in two rounds, September 1 and December 15.

The United States will raise existing tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports to 30 percent from 25 percent, beginning on October 1, Trump said on Twitter Friday.

He added that the duties on another $300 billion in Chinese products, set to take effect on September 1, will be increased by 5 percent, reaching 15 percent.

Gold Price Suppression Denier Defends His Client Central Banks Reply

By Chris Powell

While most market analysts who have denied central bank and government intervention against gold have long since gone silent on the issue, Managing Partner Jeff Christian of metals consultancy CPM Group continues to disparage such complaints as “conspiracy theory.”

In an interview last week with Money Metals Exchange’s Mike Gleason, Christian tries to reduce the issue to what he considers ordinary and small-time market manipulation by individual traders.

“We don’t see grand conspiracies and we see a tremendous amount of evidence that these grand conspiracies do not exist,” Christian says.

That is, Christian doesn’t see the monthly interventions of the Bank for International Settlements in the gold market on behalf of its central bank members, interventions confirmed by the bank’s own monthly statements of account.

He doesn’t see the “central bank incentive program” of trading discounts extended by CME Group, operator of the major U.S. futures exchanges, to governments and central banks for their surreptitious trading of all major futures contracts, including gold and silver.

He doesn’t see the refusal of the U.S. Treasury Department and Federal Reserve to answer U.S. Rep. Alex Mooney’s questions about which markets they are secretly trading in and why.

He doesn’t see the closed meetings regularly held by the major international financial organizations, from the BIS to the International Monetary Fund to the G-7 Gold and Foreign Exchange Committee, wherein intervention policy is formulated and implemented in secret — the very definition of “conspiracy.”

More…

Why I’m a Proud Anti-American 1

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

Anti-American, that’s the popular slur for any critic of American foreign policy, especially in an election year. If you happen to have enough of a conscience to give a shit about who this country happens to be bombing or starving this week, you’re an anti-American, you hate the troops and you should go back to where you came from. The knee-jerk reaction to this knee-jerk reaction from most peaceniks, left and right, is to designate their opposition to empire as a form of patriotism. And I can respect that, but it’s not really my style. I’ve always been the kind of fat insane faggot who owns her slurs and wears them proudly like gang colors. I call it the Eazy E school of political incorrectness. You can be a patriotic pacifist, or you can be an Anti-American with attitude. My homegirls in the Squad have sheepishly chosen the prior, but I for one am proud to be a flag burning, middle finger waging, Anti-American bitch, and if Trump wants to send me back to the County Cork, I’ll pack my bags if he agrees to kiss my ass on the way out.

The stone cold reality is that my fervent anti-imperialism cannot be divorced from the country I live in. America is not a republic inflicted by empire. America is a glorified corporation defined by empire and it always has been. America has grown from a plucky little European slave colony to the deadliest war machine the world has ever seen. You’ll have to forgive me if I have trouble finding something to love about a rabid ax murderer like Uncle Sam, but for the sake of bitching lets unpack some of the cherished myths even antiwar patriots tend to cling to like exiles to a lifeboat.

Let’s start with an easy one. “People died for your freedom!” Every time I hear some Toby-Keith-love-it-or-leave-it-limp-dick belch that one out, I instinctively start laughing and then feel like a total cunt. People died for our freedom? No they didn’t. When was the last time your “freedom” was personally threatened by some bearded zealot from a shithole country? Did the Vietcong threaten our precious freedom to buy Coke and vote for reality TV rapists? Did the Taliban? The only thing these peasant malcontents threatened was America’s ability to treat the Third World like a broodmare.

READ MORE

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.

More…

“A State within a State”: Hezbollah as a Bulwark against the Atlanticist-Zionist-Gulf State Axis Reply

By Keith Preston

Introduction

            Hezbollah is one of the most unique political organizations in the world and has the distinction of having forced the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) to withdraw from southern Lebanon on two separate occasions. The first of these was in 2000, ending Israel’s 18-year occupation of the region. The second was during the 2006 Lebanon War following a renewed assault on Lebanon by the IDF. Hezbollah is also considered to be a model “fourth generation warfare” organization by theorists of generational warfare, such as William S. Lind. Fourth generation warfare theory argues that the nature of war has been transformed since the end of World War Two. Because of the invention of nuclear weapons, international warfare between states has largely become cost prohibitive. Consequently, the waging of war has become a matter of conflict between states and non-state actors primarily.

Non-state actors may include any organization that engages in armed conflict outside of the state system, such as guerrillas, insurgents, or terrorists. However, non-state actors also include organizations that provide functions usually considered to be the prerogative of states (such as the provision of social services, education, public infrastructure, or public security), or focal points of public loyalty other than states, such as movements, causes, religions, ideologies, or gangs. Fourth generation warfare theory indicates that many people around the world are transferring their primary loyalties away from traditional national patriotisms toward fourth generation forces of many kinds. For example, rather than considering themselves to be a patriotic citizen of their nation, a person may first consider themselves to be a loyal Muslim, socialist, or devotee of animal welfare. Hezbollah is considered by fourth generation warfare theorists to be the most sophisticated fourth generation model because of its ability to provide traditional state functions on a significant scale, and Hezbollah’s having superseded the Lebanese military as the “national defense” force of Lebanon.

More…

The Intellectual Legacy of Carl Schmitt 1

                                                by Keith Preston

Part One: p. 1

Early Life and Intellectual Development

The Turmoil of Weimar and the State of the Exception

Part Two: p. 6

The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy and The Concept of the Political

Part Three: p. 11

The Destruction of the Weimar Republic and the Rise of the Nazis

Part Four: p. 15

The Nazi Era, The Postwar Period, and Schmitt’s Contemporary Relevance

Part One: Early Life and Intellectual Development

Among the many fascinating figures that emerged from the intellectual culture of the Weimar Republic that existed in Germany between the two world wars, perhaps none are quite as significant or unique as Carl Schmitt. An eminent jurist and law professor during the Weimar era, Schmitt was arguably the greatest political theorist of the twentieth century. He is also among the most widely misinterpreted or misunderstood. The misconceptions regarding Schmitt are essentially traceable to two issues. The first of these is obvious enough: Schmitt’s collaboration with the Nazi regime during the early years of the Third Reich. However, the other reason why Schmitt’s ideas are so frequently misrepresented or even reviled in contemporary liberal intellectual circles may ultimately be the most important. Schmitt’s works in political and legal theory provide what is by far the most penetrating critique of the ideological and moral presumptions of modern liberal democracy and its institutional workings.

More…

American elite divided over US-China economic ties Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The American elite are divided over what the economic relationship between the United States and China should be like, says a political analyst.

Keith Preston made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Saturday when asked about President Donald Trump’s furious reaction after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell had warned the trade war with China was a risk to the US economy.

In a furious flurry of tweets on Friday, Trump attacked the Powell’s stewardship of the world’s biggest economy.

“As usual, the Fed did NOTHING! It is incredible that they can ‘speak’ without knowing or asking what I am doing, which will be announced shortly,” Trump wrote on Twitter.

“We have a very strong dollar and a very weak Fed. I will work ‘brilliantly’ with both, and the US will do great,” he added.

“My only question is, who is our bigger enemy, Jay Powell or Chairman Xi?”

Preston said, “There is a split within the American elite, within the American economic and political elite over the question of what the economic relationship between the United States and China ought to be.”

“It’s clear that the Trump administration represents a vein of the American elite that do view China as a primary enemy and wish to take a more hawkish position towards China when it comes to things like tariffs and trade and those kinds of issues, economic relationships and also military relationships as well.” 

“On the other hand, there are other sections that the American elite that are very concerned about maintaining a trade relationship that currently exists between the United States and China, they do not want anything to disrupt that,” he added.

Trump lashed out at China on Friday, vowing a quick response to China’s announcement of new tariffs and ordering US companies to leave the country.

The attack came after China announced earlier on Friday it would impose new tariffs on US soybeans, lobsters, peanut butter and other imports worth $75 billion in retaliation for Washington’s latest round of punitive duties that take effect in two rounds, September 1 and December 15.

The United States will raise existing tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports to 30 percent from 25 percent, beginning on October 1, Trump said on Twitter Friday.

PressTV-US to hike existing, planned tariffs on Chinese imports

PressTV-US to hike existing, planned tariffs on Chinese importsPresident Trump says the US will hike tariff rates on most imports from China in retaliation for Beijing’s new duties on American goods.

He added that the duties on another $300 billion in Chinese products, set to take effect on September 1, will be increased by 5 percent, reaching 15 percent.

Why I Stopped Being White (and You Should Too) 9

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

Race is a touchy subject in the West. People across the aisle, especially white folk, tend to avoid it like a plague. A big part of the reason behind this reservation has to do with the fact that both the left and the right maintain an equally immature grasp on the subject. While the right seems to be convinced that race is some kind of scientific fact like a species of bird, the left seems to view it as an inescapable historical prison sentence with no hope for escape. Like usual, the left is wrong and the right is way fucking wrong. There is nothing scientific or permanent about race. It is a social construct as fluid in nature as gender or sexuality, and it is constantly evolving. Almost every known race was created by a collision of former races that have ceased to exist. About the only thing that the clueless class in the left-right paradigm gets right is that the white race is a very unique creature, and a dangerous one.

The white race is unique in that it is the first defining race of the imperial era and modern day imperialism defines its very existence. The Western Europeans designed the concept of whiteness to justify their expanse and enslavement of the New World and it’s dark skinned cousins across the Global South. As the insatiable nature of capitalism demanded endless expansion, it’s moneyed mandarins required the creation of a new super-class to rationalize the enslavement of the darker nations. This concept became even more necessary with American independence and the fall of monarchism.

This new white aristocracy replaced the royal bloodline and shaped the very nature of the planet’s economic ecosystem. The First World was created with the excess wealth pillaged from the Third World, and it’s subjects soon became victims of new races invented to further empower the white race. The colored races of black and Latino were constructed to both consolidate white supremacy’s ill-gotten gains and to rob the many tribes that made up these racial monoliths of color of their diverse indigenous cultures. The white race is unique, not simply by the Machiavellian nature of its design, but by the necessity of its supremacy over other similarly constructed mass races to justify its very existence. But like most imperial schemes, white supremacy backfired.

READ MORE

I Was a Red Flag Kid 5

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

Middle school sucks for everybody. But its harder for some people than others. After nearly a decade at a small, conservative, K-8 Catholic school, I was beginning to chafe beneath the cross of my mental illness. I had suffered from depression and anxiety since early childhood but as I entered the maelstrom of my teens, these issues became too turbulent to conceal. I didn’t feel like the other kids and my awkward individuality felt far from welcome among the pious adults. Even beyond my ability to cope with the basic everyday stress of being an active human being, I felt strange and detached from what passed as normal in this stifling environment. My body felt like a mistake and I couldn’t shake the fear that these feelings were evil. I had never heard of words like transgender or genderfluid. This was the Nineties and the only people who looked the way I felt were Dennis Rodman and Marilyn Manson, and the generally excepted wisdom at my church was that these freaks were going to hell, and so was I.

I was terrified. Terrified of myself. Terrified that if I ever let people in, that if people ever really truly saw me, they would either burn me at the stake or run screaming for the hills. So I retreated and found ways to cope. I lost most of my friends but I found shards of myself through the awesome power of punk rock music and radical politics. George W. Bush dropped bombs on Baghdad when I was in 8th grade and the very next day I came to school with a peace sign strapped to my arm. In early post-9/11 middle America, this mild gesture of resistance was tantamount to burning a pentagram in your forehead and declaring allegiance to Al-Qaeda.

I spent the proceeding weeks and months engaging in all out verbal combat with nearly every student and teacher I crossed. It was exhausting, but for the first time in a very long time, I wasn’t scared, I was proud. I had declared my independence from “normal” and stood my ground and it felt empowering. So I dressed in all black, stopped standing for the pledge of allegiance and gave up on trying to please the normal people who occupied my life. I decorated my backpack with badges emblazoned with the portraits of my new saints; Kurt Cobain, Che Guevara and Joey Ramone. Then the wolves came in and normal bit back.

READ MORE

The Sound Money Showdown in U.S. States Reply

Policies relating to sound money have been the subject of substantial debate at the state level this year, with bills, hearings, and/or votes taking place in nearly a dozen legislatures. 

As most state legislatures have now wrapped up their work for the year, let’s review the victories (both offensive and defensive)—and lone defeat—for sound money during the 2019 session.

The Sound Money Defense League’s primary goal is to remove every kind of taxation imposed on constitutional money. Given its practical importance, the hottest issue in the states has been taxation—i.e. whether citizens should face a levy when buying or selling gold and silver.

House Bill 2684, introduced by West Virginia Delegate Pat McGeehan, aimed to remove all taxes (sales tax, corporate income tax, and personal income tax) from gold and silver. Meanwhile, Senate Bill 502, sponsored by Senator Craig Blair, exempted only precious metals from the state’s sales tax.

The West Virginia bill removing sales taxes passed overwhelmingly through both chambers, and Governor Jim Justice signed SB 502 into law.

House Bill 2140, introduced by Kansas Representative Jim Kelly, included a sales tax exemption on the sale of gold and silver as part of a larger bill rife with new taxes. Governor Laura Kelly signed the measure in May.

More…