TOTW: Idealizing the Anarcho-Townie

  • Posted on: 16 July 2017
  • By: SUDS

In its current fashion anarchism appears inseparable from hyper-localism. However, some anarchists may be disconnected from localized community, either because they travel frequently, they socialize infrequently, or, in general, don’t enjoy interactions with other anarchists. These nomads and hermits may fail to build the most highly valued token of solidarity with anarchist community—long-term affinity built through face-to-face interactions—but if this is true should they be outcasts?

Crimethinc writes in their essay What Is Security Culture?:
“Be conscious of how long you’ve known people, how far back their involvement in your community and their lives outside of it can be traced, and what others’ experiences with them have been. The friends you grew up with, if you still have any of them in your life, may be the best companions for direct action, as you are familiar with their strengths and weaknesses and the ways they handle pressure—and you know for a fact they are who they say they are.”

Can an anarchist claim to be anarchist if they aren’t actively collaborating with other anarchists?

In market culture the individual entrepreneur is celebrated and mythologized. There are some fine examples of individual anarchists executing extraordinary projects without assistance, and yet legends of large-scale federations still dominate our fantasies, regardless of whether or not they are effective. In both business and anarchism building a strong team is a popular topic, however business prioritizes execution over rapport, while anarchism in practice seems to fetishize affinity over effectiveness. The result is the exclusion of hermit and nomadic anarchists, with all their diverse thoughts and experiences, in favor of maintaining hyper-localism.

What place is there in established anarchist circles for the disruptive force of hermit and nomad anarchists, or are they doomed to alienation and isolation due to their lifestyles?

category: 

Comments

Hermit and nomadic types would more likely be included if whatever practices or activities in question are tied to a particular something (space, time, building, colour of paint etc) other than a social circle

Yeah, this is why you need at least enough of the commune to make explicitly anarchist spaces that strangers can drop in to and make contact. This will invariably be denigrated as leftism and it doesn't matter, ignore those people and make anarchist spaces. Don't use them for the sketchier stuff obviously but the difference in a city with publicly announced anarchist spaces is palpable, especially over a lifespan of at least a few years.

If this is "localism", that's only because you need to start by building a solid base before you reach out.

But damn, I have nothing to offer. I'm sort of in favour of hyperlocalism, probably, but this is a real good challenge.

The hope, I guess, would be to create a sort of "open society" where the... I'll call them the awkward... can still find a place - to live, to socialize, to flirt with girls/boys/queers, to contribute, to play games? Not sure how to make that happen, but I think Getting Busy (in like, a social war way) way would be part of the answer. So for me, a question is, does hyperlocalism have something to do with Getting Busy or not?

Interesting people, plz engage with this comment, you will be entitled to a Smoke-Style High-Five if we ever hang out.

Yeah, it totally does shadow. I mean, assuming that I know what the fuck you mean by "hyper localism".

Every anarchist space I've ever been a part of tried various ways of engaging in local issues, it'd be weird as hell to bother with all the trouble of paying for or squatting a physical building that only engaged with meta stuff like a website does.

Actually, the most recent space I was involved with suffered for a lack of collective members who were interested in local issues. It would sit empty for months because nobody could even think of a use for it.

So, on further reflection, I am not into that, just as I am not into any mystification. Probably a better word for what I want is cohesion, the sort of thing talked about in some A. G. Schwarz essay whose title I don't want to look up right now... A paraphrasing: "The important thing is that everyone, the junkies and the federationists, the nihilist-attackers and the whoever else, communicate with one another."

There is a huge mystique of Montréal as a locality, because Anarchy Stuff Happens Here (bookfairs and smashy-smash both!), but there ain't any real cohesion, I think. Or like, less than I think makes sense.

This is slightly away from the "open society"... I mean, I think what you need is a strong, fighting scene for that, which makes space for people to do their own projects. Cohesion, I think, helps for that. Hyperlocalism, in the sense of a mystique and maybe too in the sense of a cultural value (let's say, in my context, looking askance at the person who doesn't put time into learning French, as I myself sometimes do), is not gonna be useful. As a mystique, it obscures the reality of the locality's real characteristics. As a cultural value, it's snobby.

"Montreal mystique" ha!

I'm over on the west coast and I've watched at least 2.5 generations of anarchists make the Montreal pilgrimage now. Eventually most of them come back making disillusioned noises.

Nothing wrong with heading for the horizon but the people don't change that much. The "cohesion" you speak of will always be the sum total of work being put in by a few masochists.

I mean, let's say you have masochists who aim specificially to make cohesion happen... They will probably fail, cuz that's not how it works. Cohesion comes out of communication, not activism. It means, people talk to each other, or even just know how to talk to each other, even when they don't hang out so much.

If you think that's masochism, then you're duuuuuuuuuuuumb.

That's how I am using the word "cohesion" in this instance, at least. Suggest another if, as I do, you think my choice is imperfect.

No, it's masochism to try and maintain anything within the anarchist milieu, including networks of communication. Why would you assume I meant activism? It's 2017 ...

because that assumption lent your argument some level of coherency, which I could respect, even if I didn't entirely agree. If it's a matter of "doing organizing", then yeah, I guess that's energy that might not translate into success, therefore a pessimistic view (that discounts that success can happen) is that you're punishing yourself.

But no, it's like, don't even try to "maintain networks of communication"... There is no value in this group of people, or being among them. And fair enough, if you think that. But what would make it masochistic, to simply make a point of knowing people and such? There is evidently a genuine desire, on my part and others who aren't entirely anti-scene, to make the scene better - not as a divine mission, or a categorical imperative, but that thing that feels okay. Because the scene is where we are, and we know both that a) it doesn't get better elsewhere, probably, and b) more friends is a good thing.

This next paragraph is a little over-the-top, but whatever, lol.

Your attitude calls to mind the anti-cult movement of the 1960s, emergent from conservative Christianity that saw itself as default, and deeply concerned with the move of people into subcultures. No doubt, those subcultures were imperfect, and many people left them very embittered. But the anti-cult movement came to think it needed to save people, most of whom generally did not want the saving. So, uh, fuck off with that, eh?

Anti-cult? You wandered off in to the trees. To be fair, I find most sustained human interaction to have a certain baseline of masochism required ;)

I mean, look where we're having this conversation. I take constant shit here for arguing that anarchists need to talk to each other more and build things that last because that apparently makes me a "leftist" but I've been doing various projects to that end for years and will continue to do so. I do this, while acknowledging that people are often frustrating.

Is it obvious that there's two different anons that have been replying to you here? I'm the one who was slightly less of a dick haha

"To be fair, I find most sustained human interaction to have a certain baseline of masochism required"

Lol but true, brah!

anons in agreement on @news....sigh

but, like, that's hard to really keep straight, haha. So I just sort of amalgamate y'all. Get a name!

Anyway, it sounds like you're cool and I think we could maybe chill. Best wishes!

WE ARE LEGION

NO UR A SPOOK!

Names are spooks. The mightiest ego needs no name to anchor it.

No me.

Aren't you too busy already? Why do you wanna be Getting Busy or how?

Like... quit whatever job you have, hang out with people interested in doing shit, not just "interesting people". I dunno, if you're interesting is just fucking then I see nothing inherently wrong with that... just that it's a bit weird if it's what you're seeking in "anarchism". I wonder what is the interest of people like you to get into some practical anarchy if it ain't a genuine commitment.

Or what I'm doing, or why. Suffice it to say, it's not a simple answer, like anyone's life.

Good callout on "interesting people"; I would rather people with my own interests, obvs. But like, I am also into something dynamic, and that doesn't get into some strugglebot tunnel vision, because I think the core critique of "strugglismo" is solid. I think it's not inherently bad that there are anarcho-artist types who don't, I don't know, do the same shit as me... I thought it was cool what a lot of them wrought in the streets in 2012. I like that there are musicians, and people who garden... It's all good.

So, getting back on topic again, the local is kind of fake. Montréal, again, has people moving to it and leaving it all the damn time. So too all big places. Anarchists are a part of this mobile North Ametican thing. So again, how should townies (and maybe I am one) engage with this? Is it maybe a bad thing to valorize locality, long-term commitment to place, to the extent that we do?

"I would rather people with my own interests, obvs."

Awesome! Like everybody does around you. I FEEL that what anarchoids need is to confront themselves to the mainstream culture and its people, just to realize how there's more than what they think in what they do that's ordinary and lame, even under the guise of having some revolutionary and/or insurgent potential.

"I thought it was cool what a lot of them wrought in the streets in 2012."

Yeah, okay... they were running in the streets doing the smashy-smashy, which gave them gold radi-creds, then they took a break in July and moved along to become liberal capitalists for the years that followed, working hard to carve themselves a place in the system. Great.

Now these same radical artists barely can keep a student cafe open at their departments, being so entrenched in this culture of elitist carelessness they've refused to counter, because it's only the externalities that matter. The suit-and-tie capitalists... the cops in body armors... dem baaad bad politicians... those nationalist-racist creeps nobody would wanna sleep with and whoever else you can put on a banner. Gotta thank those external enemies so we can stay lousy and careless without looking like the servants of work, landlords and money that we are.

Or is this what happened in your history book? Much talk about those cool-ass popular anarchistic uprisings, but nothing's ever said about how they were liquidated and recycled. Still waiting for Frank Lopez's take on that.

Addendum: there's nothing Montreal worth fighting for. A form of life by and for anarchists could have been created collectively so that we at last got that to fight for... but you're several years late at that.

"nothing IN Montreal worth fighting for"

...and no I ain't pretending I'm teaching you something new here, but maybe I am.

The world is indeed terrible and bad. It should be different. 2012 did not bring home the bacon. I have a job and a landlord, even though I'd rather not.

I think you failed to understand what I said about artists earlIer, by the way. Artists were doing art in 2012. I thought that was cool, though I did not do any art myself. I am not a visual arts kind of person. For me, 2012 was a very flawed example of the "open society" I am talking about, i.e. a situation where peeps with different interests, capacities, and whatever can come to town (or emerge from their hideyholes somewhere already in town) and do cool things. That's all.

Nothing worth fighting for in Montréal... That's dumb. To be certain, I think there is less than there used to be, because a lot of good stuff was lost. But there is still some stuff. Doesn't mean that people should feel attached to this place, of course. Different people are going to have different subjective feelings about it. But srsly, this place still has some anarchist infrastructure, and that is good, at least insofar as it CAN be used for an open society.

Prolly giving you too much good faith engagement. ¯\\_(ツ)_/¯

I'm just sincerely clueless at that point.

If you could substantiate your third paragraph that'd be helpful. Of course you don't have to talk about stuff you wouldn't want the authorities to know about (even if at that point they might know everything). I mean... beyond the well-known aboveground infrastructure.

And no I don't see much good worth fighting for, beyond a few abandoned areas or buildings nobody cares occupying anyways. I guess I do not enjoy the same wealth in terms of relationships and connections as you do. But I was speaking on a more general level, like people, who like me, haven't got much counterparts who got their backs, people to trust, cohesive relations with (or can't afford due to being such a drag with others ;-)

You at least seem to be doing the effort of "blurring the relational lines" and leaving chance for your network to expand, so I can't bitch you over being careless to that regards.

For having lived as a kind of hermit AND a drifter myself, I can tell you that yes, they are suffering from isolation and alienation. Though not one that's so much different than the alienation/isolation some average Joe or Jane will live in those awesome cities thriving with rich anarchist milieus (that last part was sarcasm). Neither more doomed in any way. It's possible to develop relations with interesting people on the countryside, and the social life of a drifter can be also quite rich.

how do you know when a hermit is trying to fit in in the city?

When they wash their paws

Q: "Can an anarchist claim to be anarchist without collaborating with other anarchists?".

A: Why would they? The whole point of self-identifying as one is to meet others and collaborate. You only need an ism to save time while relating to others, that's its only purpose.

sorry for the repetition, but:

"Hermit and nomadic types would more likely be included if whatever practices or activities in question are tied to a particular something (space, time, building, colour of paint etc) other than a social circle."

not my original post, but i think it hits the nail on the head. but then, i'm not one of the typical insurrecto-activist types ("if you ain't out there breakin shit, you ain't no anarchist") that clearly dominate the north american anarchist space these days.

The irony is that those you call insurrecto-activists will be found doing some usually unharmful, petty "attacks" with a quite bad trade-off between weight of the prosecutions and power of the claimed attacks. Hardly CCF or Bonanno types, more like shadowy youngsters doing media ops. Stuff that can be done fucking anywhere anyways.

I personally feel a bit wasteful for having contributed to this spectacle of insurgency that drawn so many people in here... Of course going the distance for some experiences is good no matter what, and travelers shouldn't come to a place like Montreal with preconceived notions, as they're likely to be in for a major disappointment.

I think there's a different question that matters more: how public is the "hermit" or "nomad(s)" in question? A lot of the academic anarchists could be considered hermits, or nomads. Tasos from the Void Network travels. So... there's an implication already in these questions that the hermits and nomads aren't just those that travel/etc., but specifically those that ARE outcasts, alienated, and isolated. I don't think the contrast to those types are so-called townies because this really seems to be more about how well someone is known whether or not they have a certain lifestyle or live in a place for a certain amount of time.

only you can truly end your own isolation

is townie a common word? do ppl know what it means? pretty sure it's not in the dictionary, perhaps we should have a working definition at risk of categorizing and putting things into things. It seems the word also means things in different places of the world (international vs. hyper-local), for example in England. From a specifically North American (USA) standpoint (at least for me here):

the townie: someone who has lived somewhere forever, or at least before anyone can remember. everyone knows them via some connection from that person being in town for so long, some good stories, but mostly associated with the rougher crowd of bar fights and stupid town shit. the townie often knows where the best town things are; parties, deals on things, and cool places that the more common resident is blissfully unaware of. townies are the best 99% of the time. students in college from out of town, often call the locals "townies".

anarchist townie: see above, but with less shittiness associated with fights and stupid town shit. perhaps add some more local town flavor. maybe more fights of a different scale.

Apologies for not actually addressing the questions or other comments, some good stuff here, perhaps another time. I really like the idea/word townies and they have always held a special spot in my <3

if I'm being derisive, I'll say townie. If euphemistic, I'll say provincial. Hillbilly seems overused, yokel less so. Rube, bumpkin, hick...Knowledge is power!

why assume that storming comes from 'storms'?

why assume that 'terrorism' comes from 'terrorists'? [or why assume that rebellion comes from rebels?]

why assume that flashing comes from lightning?

every time we see a noun appear to explain an activity, suspect connerie.

i.e. suspect that someone or something is being blamed, credited and scapegoated for eruptions from relational tensions that have been building for a long while, that have deep roots.

these nouns are categories of 'things-in-themselves' [rebels, terrorists, anarchists] and categories don't exist in the physical reality of our actual experience. categories do not exist in cultures with relational languages.

there are anarchist behaviours and there are terrorist behaviours and there are rebel behaviours, and these behaviours are inductively actualized by relational tensions, and they are vented through ordinary people.

why ever claim that a particular type of behaviour comes from a particular type of people? Why NOT go with Emerson and acknowledge that behaviours come from external influences that vent through people.

there is only one reason to claim that a particular type of behaviour comes from a particular type of people; ... to obfuscate the real source of the behaviour. terrorism does not come from terrorists, it is inductively actualized by epigenetic influence immanent in the relational dynamic it is included in [it takes a whole community to raise a terrorist].

in a relational view of anarchy, there are no anarchists responsible for it [no masters no gods].

chuang tzu describes an anarchist community;

"`They were upright and correct without knowing that to be so was righteous. They loved one another without knowing that to do so was benevolence. They were sincere without knowing that to do so was loyalty. They kept their promises without knowing that to do so was to be in good faith. They helped one another without thought of giving or receiving gifts. Thus their actions left no trace and we have no records of their affairs' (Chuang Tzu, Ch. XII)

Can an anarchist claim to be anarchist if they aren’t actively collaborating with other anarchists? Can an anarchist be an anarchist if they work, pay rent, call the cops, pay tax etc? I would argue the answer is no they are not anarchist. Rather, I would claim they have anarchist sympathies. Let's face it, anarchist sympathisers discuss, debate, riot, protest etc in order to achieve anarchist way of being. They wouldn't be doing all that if they were actual anarchists. Calling themselves anarchists when they cleatly are not is denial. Indeed, arguably, there is little difference between many anarchist sympathisers and many other people as both work, pay tax etc. This distinction is real. Yes, there may be mutual aid etc in small niches but let's face it, that applies to many people.

Emile, are you sure you have covered everything regarding this context? Is there anything else you would like to add? Seriously though, when you write your comments, do feel a surge if energy, a need to get the comment out of your head and on to the page...out into the world? Dare I say you want to share your thoughts, it is very important (vital) to you (your existential self) that you are heard? I hot this feeling reading your thread.

"big oil" emile is on his personal mission to save the world, one walltext at a time (including the occasional live-action one, lel)

Ha! Is that true? He was some idiot savant for an oil conglomerate and retired to bore everyone to death with his don Quixote routine about language?

I remember somebody posted this stuff a few years back with links for proof but they were too nice to doxx him completely. Fucking hilarious if it's true!

if the group in control of the centre are rich and want to impose a ten thousand dollar tax on everyone, which the rich don't even feel but which impoverishes and imposes great hardships on many have-nots, rebellious behaviours are induced as in 'natural justice' which seeks the restoring of balance and harmony. however, labelling people with naturally rebellious behaviours as 'rebels' and portraying these people as fully and solely responsible for their rebel actions and results, blinds us to the physical reality of our actual experience wherein these behaviours are inductively actualized by the relational dynamics everyone shares inclusion in, which can be conditioned by some so as to selectively oppress others.

of course the inductive influence is the source of these behaviours and not the 'genetic agency' of the notional 'things-in-themselves' labelled 'rebels' because of their epigenetically induced behaviours. prosecuting the 'rebels' allows those in 'the centre' that they form by their concensus, to continue to marginalize others with impunity.

beware of 'anarchists' that support 'Western moral judgement based justice' and 'consensus' and literal readings of noun-and-verb language-and-grammar.

Obvious counter post: beware of pompous online pundits who wall-text to prop up their own little ego and cry about persecution whenever the rest of the room gets tired of their monotonous, pedantic noise.

in our employing of noun-and-verb language, the number of words we use to understand one another 'conveniently shrinks' in proportion to the number of 'standard' assumptions that we can commonly accept (or that our grandparents have commonly accepted) so that we no longer have to restate these assumptions upon which the meaning of the few words that we are still using dependently rest. The result is that this reduced number of 'more condensed meaning' KISS words is like a field of icebergs which we see only in terms of their tips which 'float above', and 'thanks to', large bodies of assumptions which lie in the darkness below the reason-illuminated brightness of our current aware focus, the deep and fat bodies of Derridean deferred difference based meaning.

In spite of the inherent 'perspectivism' in our physically real experiences [our individual experience is unique so there is no 'common true perspective'] and in spite of the arbitraryness of group concensus on 'the truth' [due to group values bias used in cherry-picking available data to put together a concensus based 'semantic reality', ... we continue to use 'concensus' to establish a 'common truth'. that is, we put our unique and different-values-based 'semantic realities' in competition with other biased and cherry-picked 'semantic realities', the winner or 'correct reality' being established by 'the principle of Lafontaine'; 'la raison du plus fort est toujours la meilleure'.

That is, the KISS approach determines 'the most true and correct semantic reality', NOT by exploring [e.g. as in a 'learning circle'] the differing assumptions and experiences which lie in the darkness beneath the 'semantic reality' formulations but by 'the power in numbers' which can crush the opposition as in simple numerical vote gathering where people support their preferred entry in the 'semantic reality' competition and agree to numbers-based 'election' of a particular 'semantic reality' to be used as the general 'operative reality'.

Because the popular ethic in the KISS approach is simple concensus building, 'attack ads' are just as effective as positive promotions in securing votes, and 'minority views' are just a distraction that can be purged with 'attack ads' to prevent them from becoming a problem.

of course the inductive influence is the source of these behaviours and not the 'genetic agency' of the notional 'things-in-themselves' labelled 'rebels' because of their epigenetically induced behaviours. prosecuting the 'rebels' allows those in 'the centre' that they form by their concensus, to continue to marginalize others withif the group in control of the centre are rich and want to impose a ten thousand dollar tax on everyone, which the rich don't even feel but which impoverishes and imposes great hardships on many have-nots, rebellious behaviours are induced as in 'natural justice' which seeks the restoring of balance and harmony. however, labelling people with naturally rebellious behaviours as 'rebels' and portraying these people as fully and solely responsible for their rebel actions and results, blinds us to the physical reality of our actual experience wherein these behaviours are inductively actualized by the relational dynamics everyone shares inclusion in, which can be conditioned by some so as to selectively oppress others. impunity. beware of 'anarchists' that support 'Western moral judgement based justice' and 'consensus' and literal readings of noun-and-verb language-and-grammar.

Anarchism, and especially the pos-left, is a social scene.

And that's what you're doing? "Collapsing categories" with your walls of text? Looks like you disproved your own hypothesis then!

Only an unfettered ego (or several) could produce posts like yours in the first place. No apparent signs of collapse!

where there is no possibility or question of winning and thus no need to win, ego does not come into it and engagement can flow freely, without fear of 'losing' since the engagement is not coming from the egotist's need to 'win' and to 'have power and control over'.

the threatened ego, fearing collapse, will retreat. the ego-less feels no threat to its (not-present) ego, and no need to retreat.

to call egolessness "unfettered ego" is an oxymoron.

the ego is inherently paranoid and schizophrenic [paranoid because ego is hyped from nothing and continually threatened with collapse (stands or falls on the basis of belief in itself), ... schizophrenic because the notional 'one' semantically splits itself apart from 'the many' creating relational tensions, as between colonizers and 'terrorists', where the colonizers hide behind the artificial semantic innocence that comes with their 'declaration of independence' yet know, deep down, that they are the source of the terrorism directed against them. the colonizers' continued abuse of the colonized gives the former a deep subliminal mirrored-back sense of self-hate [they 'are' the others at the same time as they are 'themselves'].

this dark, threatening 'otherness' being mirrored back to them from the faceless otherness, is them, the inhabitant-habitat nonduality that reason has dualistically split apart into 'independently-existing thing-in-itself inhabitant' and 'independent habitat'.

this paranoid schizophrenic nature that comes with nonduality denial is the salient characteristic of our Western culture.

it manifests where egotists gather themselves in herds or bully groups to crush anything that threatens the collapse of their egos; i.e. to crush anything that threatens their 'dualist beliefs'.

Ahh, self described as having achieved egolessness. You'll forgive me if I don't just take your word for it.

"big oil" emile has such an ego, he thinks he doesnt, and is just the voice of the spatial plenum, lel

words such as 'ego' are used all the time with users seeming to assume they all have a common understanding. that is how the popular and dominant (in Western society) KISS approach works. a small and simple vocabulary simply hides the underlying assumptions that we are all making (differently). everybody knows what a 'Muslim' and a 'Christian' are, right? But if you dig deeper into the underlying unspoken assumptions that are giving meaning to such words, how many variants are there that feed into the very same letters, m... u... s... l... i... m...? sure you know what that word means, and likewise, you say you know what 'ego' means, like everybody else, but do words have 'common meanings'?

for example, nietzsche has one use for 'ego' and stirner may have another.

in my usage, i have defined 'ego' as the belief in one's 'independent being' and the belief that one's actions and accomplishments derive fully and solely from one's own internal 'genetic agency'. this is Western science's and Western religion's view of the 'human being' and a lot of people 'have an ego' in this context, wherein you can be defined by your local measured properties, as if "who you are" is definable on a stand-alone basis and does not depend on the transforming relational continuum you are included in.

of course, if you are raised speaking a relational language in an indigenous aboriginal (anarchist) cultural tradition, this Western 'ego' will have no meaning to you since one who is included in an interdependent relational web-of-life cannot be thought of as a 'thing-in-itself' and defined in terms of its local properties and depicted as being 'fully and solely responsible for its actions and accomplishments'.

further, if you are interested, there is a word for people who understand the relational worldview and its inherent 'egolessness' and who would never go along with the 'ego hoax' but who are continuing to work on 'living in an egoless way'. the youth in 'the Marionette Theatre' may have come around to understanding that the arrival of his common Western condition of egotist narcissism was holding him back from letting experience-based intuition be restored to its natural primacy over reason and intention [the latter is a degenerate form of the former, in the manner that a polynomial of degree one is a degenerate form of a polynomial of degree two (Poincaré's comparison of non-euclidian and euclidian geometries of space)]

the name for such a person (Schroedinger described himself by this term) is mahavit, one who understands that the ego is a hoax we perpetrate on ourselves but who have not yet fully achieved 'living their egolessness'. There are lots of mahavits around and more and more every day; e.g. environmentalists who are upgrading from dualist to nondualist perspectives.

"big oil" emile doesnt realizes that to the extend the ego is a fiction, no one has it, and thus in selling a position as the egoless one he is being dishonest.

On a humorous note: should we have a new color for our triangle flag?

On a serious note: I am probably what you are talking about in some way. I grew up on punk, and was first introduced to anarchist theory through that community. I moved out to San Francisco in the early 2000s, intermittently volunteered at the anarchist bookstore there, and read Bakunin, Herzen, Goldman, Zinn and others. I was attracted to the methods syndicalists generated economic surpluses in Spain, but lost because of in-fighting with the communists. I moved away, to Philly and never got in with Anarchists there. After getting robbed at gun point I moved to Vermont and worked in the woods. I ran out of money and moved home. By this time all the punks are gone and the MAGA hats have proliferated on the heads of people I grew up with. These people started as anarchists and then started listening to Ron Paul and Alex Jones and drank the kool-aid. Watching the progression has me despondent with my fellow workers. I doubt solidarity and mutual aid is possible with people so brainwashed to mistrust socialism in favor of blaming minorities and foreigners and environmental regulations that supposedly prevent their ever getting rich.

To reask Chernyshevsky and Lenin's question, but this time despairingly, what is to be done? I'm not sure there is going to be a path forward in my lifetime, so I live hermetically and don't build these lasting affinities you speak of.

Think of this period as being similar to the end of classical pre ww radicalism and be a bridge to a new radical age. Stay hermetic and pitch a new idea or two. Forget about the current milieu model returning, it isn't. If you start configuring now you will see something new in your lifetime.

Add new comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
CAPTCHA
Human?
D
z
n
V
P
G
7
Enter the code without spaces.