Sunday, August 30, 2009

What If the Black Bloc Held a Summit and the G20 Had a Bake Sale?

Last summer, I got in a small bus and headed across the county to participate in the DNC and the RNC protests. I a small interest in the events; although I mostly wanted to meet people and also see what would come out of the protests. I met many great people, and made many connections. However, the infrastructure that was created is now gone, some friends have gotten some charges and bigger records, a lot of money has been spend, and we again enjoyed our time on the news as the “masked hooligans.”

With the coming of the g20 protests, I've been thinking a lot about summit protests in general; especially in the context of the lack of class struggle in the US. The general anarchist response to the summits is summed up by groups like Crimethinc, (to which I made some responses to bellow to the blog they wrote about the convergence). They basically go on to purpose that the summits are an opportunity for anarchists to prove to others that they have ideas and modes of operations which are worth checking out.

The next perspective, the insurrectionary one, which is exemplified by a close comrade, who explained their position to me basically as such. That, in such a context of a lack of class struggle, these events give us the petri dish to test our skills and play dress up for the real thing. Also, in a time of such low class struggle, these events and the conflict that they generate are perhaps some of the only real and tangible scenes of actual combat that this system sees.

Another perspective also put forth, is that of groups like Letters Journal, coming out of the German and Dutch Ultra-Lefts and writers like Sam Moss, is that basically revolutionary groups are an impediment to the self-organization of the class, and all revolutionary groups should disband for the purpose of waiting for their time to intervene in history. Thus, in this context, such actions like at the summits still are only the left of activism; even if it riots. These events are basically meaningless until class struggle heats up. (For more, check out xDon'sx 3rd and 4th issues of xTotal Destructionx, which are great.)

As to the first, the 'general anarchist response' to the summits: I disagree. Saying that summits offer us an opportunity to share our ideas to the rest of the world and they'll pay attention if we make enough of a ruckus I think is false. The time, energy, and money that goes into these events could actually be put into creating lasting infrastructure that could be used by a movement that plans to be around for a long time and intervene in the class struggle over a long period.

This logic is also kind of like, “If the Packers win the Superbowl, everyone will like the Packers!!!” Sure, a lot of people will see anarchists in Pittsburgh that go crazy (if that happens) and be like, “cool, these people want to fuck shit up.” But, I think getting more people into the movement is a lot more complicated than just looking pretty for the cameras. Radicals have been successful in world events when the have intervened in their historical contexts with a clear direction (the Ukraine, Spain, Paris 1968), often after years of organizing and 'building the communes,” as we are so found of saying now days. Also, as it is stated in the new Politics is Not a Banana, there is more importance in a shared practice than a shared set of ideas. By this, I think that people will come to us when they see like we do that there is something to be gained by insurrection, occupying things, taking things back, collective mass direct action.

As to the second, more insurrectionary tendency, which I guess I have more affinity for, I guess I also disagree. Even if protests or even riots at summits are the only real examples of conflict in society, then the still represent 'real' leftist events like protests or marches getting out of control. Which is cool. But of course, we need this to move away from such an arena and into the stadium of everyday life. The question is how to do this. I think moving away from putting so much energy into summits is part of the solution, and using the resources that we use on summits towards such an end. I'm more interested in mobilization the 'war machine' around stuff that we can set the agenda on. A big strike for instance. Or occupying something.

It seems interesting that so much of the insurrectionary tendency is wrapped up in the Invisible Committee, yet does things that seem to be the opposite of what they put forward. We love to hate on activism, yet spend a lot of our time trying to be the ugly more terrible version of it.

As for the position of Letters Journal, I guess I would disagree with it, although it makes a lot of sense to me. How will we know when class struggle will explode? Would have they stated in Greece before they shot Alex that the insurrection in December was going to explode? How will we know who to intervene if we aren't doing it all the time, where ever conflict appears, no matter how small?

Anyway. If I had the means to go to Pittsburgh, I probably would. Which seems to be part of the problem. We go because it's fun, not because we should be spending our time and resources on it. We know comrades will be there. So we go. When do we change this. When do we start to strategically start to plan riots around what we want to? Can we even do so?

Some notes on the Crimethinc blog:

“It’s ironic that anarchist opposition to capitalist institutions—and anarchist emphasis on alternate lifestyles making the best of poverty—reached their peak a decade ago during a period of apparent prosperity, when they could be so much more persuasive today.”

It really seems that Crimethinc is shooting itself in the foot here. They seem like they want to talk away from the “if you're not having fun, you're not doing [poverty] right” aesthetic of their past, but then they write stuff like that. If you're in poverty, dumpsterdiving, squatting, and the like may make things at times 'easier;' meaning, at least you'll have trash to eat and perhaps a place to get some sleep (while waking up every three minutes when you hear something) for about a month. But these things don't make the 'best' of poverty, they help you survive a little better. I go out and dumpster food a couple times a week here in Modesto, but besides filling up my fridge with shitty food I probably wouldn't buy in general, it just takes a very small financial burden off my wallet. This does nothing to change my class position in society, nor does it make the 'best' out of it.

Also, if Crimethinc is getting at the idea that 'alternative living' should be promoted more now, due to the recession, also is missing the point that at this time we should be promoting much more than dumpsterdiving the like. We should be promoting wildcat strikes and workplace occupations, defense against evictions and all the like.

“Since Obama’s election, some of us have waited impatiently for a chance to bring opposition to global capitalism back into the public eye.”

This statement makes it seem like this only happens when radicals get in the street at summits and at times get crazy and maybe even 'riot.' Do people only oppose capitalism when they are vocal that they are opposing capitalism?

“Effective anarchist resistance in Pittsburgh could shatter the illusion that Obama and his class represent the longings of the public for a better world, focusing attention on more radical responses to the present crises.”

Also, I think a lot of people have lost the illusion that Obama offers anything but a new face to the same shit. Is this convergence the best way to go about 'proposing an alternative?' Which begs the question how we can propose an alternative to Capital even as we are out rioting against it? That isn't a problem, but lets be clear. When we attack capital, we aren't proposing an alternative as so much are we trying to get it the fuck out of our lives.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Managers of Marauders of the Desert?

This is my submission to the new Fire to the Prisons. If they don't print it, I'll probably look pretty dumb. Anyway, here ya go.

Many within the current revolutionary movement have known activism. The specialized role in society that creates managers of social change. Many of us became radicalized through being involved in leftist political parties, animal rights activism, doing vegan outreach, working for labor unions, and holding jobs canvassing for NGOs and non-profits. Often, we were drawn to these forms due to a moral sense that “something should be done” around a certain issue. Galvanized into action, we often became involved in the only forms of organization available, that of the reformist activist left. Since revolutionary ideas are often hard to come across in this society; many of us had to come to our present consciousness after first seeing the limit of spending so much time organizing against the new circus coming to town, handing out 'Why Vegan' pamphlets, or logging in the hours for the union or non-profit that we worked for. As we spent more time in these movements, our eyes became open to the poverty of these types of action. We came to see that these activist projects did nothing to end exploitation and misery; they only sought to better manage it.

We saw these forms be further recuperated back into capitalism; as we labored long hours canvassing for Greenpeace for shit wages, expanding the vegan capitalist market, or buying into anarchist bike culture. Thus, our desire for the total destruction of the social relations of capitalist civilization came to also encapsulate activism as well. We started to desire a total rupture with class society; not just establish an identity as an “activist” that was outside of the rest of the population which was “passive.” We reject this identity; we became not interested in finding ourselves through stickers on our metal water bottles and how many meetings we went to a month. Instead, we began to desire to become a physical force against the material conditions which exploit and coerce all our lives. We began to see that the issues, were not the issue at all. The solutions, were not the solution. We began to become not interested in the baby steps and progress that this democracy offered us, as we saw that within the social war that is class society, there exists tensions that we hope to push into open rupture with Capital. We do not wish to be managers of the desert which is this society. We do not want it to operate better; be reformed, or changed. This society does not 'progress.' The Marxist notion that we are marching to the end of history, even if slowly, and the liberal notion that things have been made better over the years, is false. Capital obeys no master but it's own will. We which to destroy it and find the oasis that exists beneath it and in the moments when we engage in conflict.

But, many of us moved simply from leftist and reformist activism simply into anarchist styled activism. Often, these were the only things when we were younger that we believed that we could do “as anarchists.” Many will often state that these are some of the only projects that are successful in bringing new people in our movement. We disagree. We desire a new way to find comrades within the desert, as opposed to waiting for those involved in activism to trickle towards us after they are fed up of the bullshit. We want to find those who are faced with similar conditions and wish to fight against them. We are not removed from the exploited. We too are forced to sell our labor power for wages in order to survive. We pay for rent in order to have a place to live. Our lives our organized, controlled, and directed by those who wish to capitalize off our labor power. We are among those who are broken apart by the color of our skin, what lies between our legs, and our sexual desires. Our desire to destroy class society includes a desire to find comrades which share our passion for the power to control our own lives. Activism is not a vehicle for this; it is an alienated means to better manage an alienated society. We need to find ways in which to find comrades in which we can engage in class conflict with; worlds that build our autonomy and power outside of this system.

Thus, we are not interested in the latest anarchist meme project. We are not interested in the newest form of anarcho-activism. We do not wish to create activist projects. We want power. We want to hit back. We want insurrection. The task lays before us to create ways to find comrades outside of alienated activist means. We need to exist in the spaces that are not sub-cultural; we need to exist in the spaces were people already gather and exist where they feel the tight grip of class society. We need forms of communication that speak to those who could become our comrades; not those in the same ghetto as us. We need projects which speak to the conditions we are faced with; and gestures of revolutionary solidarity which give teeth to the rejection of those conditions. This is why a project like Fire to the Prisons is important; this is why it exists. To give confidence to those element in this society which push for insurrection and revolt; either conscious of it or not. To make those elements more precise and anti-political; to generalize them across all territory for the sake of intensifying our resistance. To put a rock in the hand of everyone who is ready to throw it and a magazine in the hand of every prisoner who is ready to discover it. This magazine is part of a movement that will usher in the creation of something new; something that has not been done before. This magazine is apart of the rebirth of anarchy as a movement that attacks and destroys class society; not seeks to better manage or reform it.

Who Will Help Me Plant the Revolution...?

I love my friends to death, but I am so sick of being the person that cleans up their messes, literally. When I asked people to go home tonight they didn't even bring the chairs in from outside. I used to do this thing at Food Not Bombs, where if no one was helping cook I'd go sit in a room and wait until someone would come in to help, but then 4:30 came around and I realized that if I didn't get back into the kitchen, nothing would get done. At this point in my life, I'd just rather do it myself sometimes. That's why I don't do half the shit people want me to do; I don't want to be stuck in that role or be that asshole that has to tell you to do something.

It pisses me off when people say it's all about fun. It's not. Revolution is a lot of hard work and a lot of boring shit. Sure it's fun sometimes, but try editing a publication, going and talking to new people, or taking risks with a new project. It's a lot of work.

Also, Steve-o has a great new blog, the RAAN site is back up, and if you vote for the tour title in the poll that I hope you do and get the joke, you're one sic fuck.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Two New Blogs Added!

The Antioch Arrow Crew has a new blog.

As well as a new blog that I found from Concord, called, "Straight Outta Concord." Check them both out on the 'best buddies' section.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

TC is the SHEEET

A comrade showed me some stuff by Theorie Communiste, and hopefully there will be a fine text/zine coming out soon with some of their writings. I haven't read much by them, but from what I have read - it is pretty fucking good.

Check them out here.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

This Friday at Firehouse 51

Get ready for march in Woodland against police murder of Luis Gutierrez and bust mad chills.


Monday, August 17, 2009

Upcoming Projects and Why I Need Your Help!

Looks like I've got a fair amount of projects on my plate and I'd like to invite you to help me out and participate if possible.

From October 17th - 18th I'll be tabling with comrades from Fire to the Prisons, an excellent US based insurrectionary magazine at the Seattle Anarchist Bookfair. I've never been to the North West, so if you are down to hang out please come by the table and hit me up.

I just got the text from a good comrade from the last three issues of Emotional Poverty, published by the Red and Anarchist Action Network (RAAN). If you haven't read Emotional Poverty but you like Vengeance, I suggest picking up a copy if you can. A lot of stuff that insurrectionaries are saying about the false tension between attack and community organizing, as well as crews, was being articulated by comrade Nachie years ago. Anyway, I'm planning on putting out like a 'Nachie-reader,' of sorts and putting in a new introduction.

Lastly, and I'm excited about this one. A comrade from the IEF and I are trying to put together a speaking tour sometime for the late fall or winter of 2009. If you are on the West Coast and would like to participate by hosting an event at a University, infoshop, or other meeting space, please contact me ( "Holla if you need it like we do."

Friday, August 14, 2009

V3 Final

Vengeance 3, the final version. Is done. Download here. Essays redone and changed a bit, new design, hopefully less errors. PS - If you see one, don't text me, just keep reading.

PS - If you're not a fan of King of Queens and know me that well, then you probably won't get the joke from the above header.

Class Society is Kicking Our Ass Right Now

FUCK! So Brennus got fired, I have like $250 left in my account and need at least $300 by the end of the month, Steve-o is dealing with court shit after getting attacked by a nazi, Asesino is dealing with his own court battle. MAC is fucking losing the class war right now my friends.

But, we are about to bust back. As we speak, we're about to hit the road in another ruckus filled trip to the yay area "the land where the panthers grew" to participate in the Anarchist Olympics. If you're in town, hit us the fuck up and come out to our shindig on Saturday and fucking buy something from us cause we need the money. Get your water buckets ready cause you know that the RCP is slinky around out there.

With things so fucked up, this blog gives me hope. As well as this person's music from Detroit.

M! A! C! What you know.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Like Toy Soldiers

Recent events and a rather long bike ride (yes, yes, I do ride a bike) while listening to the new Lil Wayne rock album that is growing on me, got me thinking about something that has been bothering me for a while.

A "beef," let us call it, has been brewing for some time between anarchists in Santa Cruz and Modesto. I've probably done more to create this than anyone, but it hasn't just been me, but it's definitely been almost all initiated from anarchists in Modesto. With infiltration and repression against anarchists growing, and with a desire to not split the segments of anarchism that are interested in creating a anti-Left, anti-political, and insurrectionary milieu in the US, I thought I'd try to put this baby to bed and lay my crimes bare.

First, I want to say that I was/am highly influenced by anarchists in Santa Cruz. Probably the most highly influential anarchist project coming from the city in the post-Killing King Abacus and Willful Disobedience period was Quiver Distro. I remember getting packages from them with texts and zines that I had never heard of or seen before. In the days before zines were largely uploaded and shared via pdf form (god I feel old), zines were largely traded via mail and through hand to hand contact. Probably one of the most influential pieces from Quiver that I ever received was the text by Wolfi, "Autonomous Self-Organization and Anarchist Intervention: A Tension in Practice." This was one of the first texts at this time that presented insurrectionary ideas that made any sense to me; and also included a critique of class and social struggle that was to the point and included some useful historical references. It might be said that Quiver pushed me towards insurrectionary ideas, as well as they did for so many other people, which lead me to where I am today (someone reading smacks palm against face now...hahaha, yes!). I remember thinking during the mini-riot in Santa Cruz when the tree sit against the UCSC LRDP expansion began, as people threw punches at cops, took space, while liberals waved peace signs and stood around like idiots, "All those photocopies paid off."

Fast forward several years, as various relationships lead me to spend more time in Santa Cruz. Spending more time there put into perspective for me how "different" the scene in Modesto (where I am from) was compared to Santa Cruz, some good and some bad.

Anyway, this beef right. Based largely on:

1.) Blackbird RAUM not wanting to play at an Anarchist Cafe in Modesto (which are all outside and directed at people on the street) after they came and played there in 2005 at a similar engagement. I think this put some people off. When Firehouse 51 opened, someone (not me) wrote in the announcement that, "bands could play, except Blackbird RAUM." I must admit, I did think it was funny, but I also understood the post to be problematic in that people would see it as an attack on them and not as the joke that it was supposed to be. For the record, we do want the band to play in Modesto, and through various channels we've been asking them to do a benefit for Modesto Needle Exchange or possibly playing at Firehouse 51. We have not hard feelings toward the band and I would consider any differences that we had in the past in the past.

2.) "The banner" at the Santa Cruz Convergence. This again started as a joke. It was my idea. It started as, "Hey, wouldn't it be funny to have a banner that said, 'We've come for your trust funds!' at the convergence?" Everyone thought it was really funny. At this time, right after the Modesto water dumping against the RCP shenanigans, and when people were probably feeling like they were the shit, (and we are), I knew we were feeling cocky. I think engine summer summed it up best that it was something like, "We're the real proles, all you rich kids give us your money." I won't lie, that was what we wanted to say. I not going to state that we meant it just as a joke. All I can say is that we hope that you only respond with the same vengeance. I am sorry if you're feelings got hurt.

3.) A poem I wrote for a poetry zine. Only probably like 5 people know or care about this, but the last poem in my first poetry zine, "Heartless," I wrote during one night while in Santa Cruz when I was really drunk and not wanting to be there, I think might have turned some off. I had had an intense conversation with another comrade about class composition in Santa Cruz that day, and I wrote a pretty harsh poem using Santa Cruz as inspiration, but wanting to use it to make a bigger point about how I saw the importance (personally to me) in the distance between those of us with anarchism in regards to class. Here's a taste:

While you were dropping out of college we were applying for financial aid.
While you were vowing to never work we had already been working for years.
While you were going straight edge we had friends die of drug over doses.

Now you want to come to our town town because you think that we are the shit?
Fuck yourself.
Now you want to learn from us because you think we are interesting?
Fuck you.
Now you want to hang with us because you think we have something to offer you?
Die slowly.

Pretty brutal. I can see that if someone read that, especially if someone handed that to them and said, "Hey, crudo wrote this about Santa Cruz," that they would probably be pissed. While I used it as a reference, I wasn't speaking to it specifically. Sorry if you think I want to kill you and steal your forest squat. I don't. (I will take the car in front of your house in Mountain View or money - seriously, we need that shit).

There's probably more, but that is all I can think of of any substance or that I care to comment on. Upon writing this, I find it problematic that it may appear that I'm trying to justify my actions by stating, "I was drunk," I was joking," etc. I guess I can't do that. Trying to break these class stereotypes right? Anyway, I did all of these things knowing what I was doing. I may have been joking, but I undertook or participated in them knowing that there would be reactions from other people that I do care about (and other proletarians that might be offended) and in doing so, I apologize. There are bigger fish to fry and other things to go after. You will not find me walking into SubRosa anytime during an event with the crew screaming, "Get out! This is an eviction! All middle class people have to leave!" Although...hahah, just kidding.

I realize that posting on a blog is probably one of the worst ways of communicating this information, but I know that people from Santa Cruz do read this, it is. I hate rumors. I hate shit talking behind people's backs. I've always been (or tried to be as much as possible) straight with people when the ask me what I think, and want to continue to do so. A comrade recently commented to me that Modesto and Santa Cruz offer so many things to learn from and many things to take away from, both good and bad. The class and racial differences between both cities are vast, but I believe that comrade's sentiment to be true, and I look forward to spending more time in Santa Cruz with good comrades.

Perhaps the next time you see us, your only banners will read, "We've come for your meth labs!" Please, take them.

I am an asshole and a classist fuck. But, I do want to squash the beef. Goodnight.

PS - For dramatic effect, watch this video.

come to modesto (no the potluck isn't vegan)

Join us for our weekly potluck and filmshowing at Firehouse 51! Some of us will be leaving to present and participate in the Anarchist Olympics in the Bay Area over the weekend, so if you are coming or want to caravan with us, please join us!

When: Friday, 14th
Time: 4pm - 6pm
Where: Firehouse 51 (for directions, message us!)
Bring: Yourself, friends, something to drink, and a dish if possible.

We will be watching the classic film, "Be Kind, Rewind," which deals with gentrification, mutual aid, and general shenanigans!

be kind, rewind Pictures, Images and Photos

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Vengeance Update

In the next day or so, I will be posting up the final draft of Vengeance with lots of corrections and some minor changes to design and some of the essays. Thanks to everyone that found a problem and let me know about it.

The next Vengeance (V4) as far as I can see, will not have submissions and will be a personal publication and will be much less 'political.' I also think that it will be a standard zine size, folded down the middle. This will come out hopefully around Halloween. This isn't because I don't want submissions from people, it's just that I feel like I want to do something personal again. I don't know what the future for Vengeance will be, but I'd like the next issue with submissions to come out sometime around the end of the year. People that are into seemed to be into it. Perhaps we should have some sort of convergence or gathering point? I think some of us should try and meet and discuss where we want to take this thing. I think there is now a big task before us to articulate through action what we mean and what we want to see.

People keep asking me to elaborate on certain ideas or theories but I feel like perhaps further elaboration would be silly if there's not an attempt to carry these ideas into the real world. I think in the coming rest of the year I'm going to try and do that and hopefully my writings in the future will reflect this. I also need to concentrate on Modesto Anarcho stuff in the future without distractions as well as get my living situation in order and concentrate on working as much as possible.

I will most likely be at the Seattle bookfair if people want to meet there and discuss things.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Meet the Gay Gangsters of Bash Back!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I fucked up

So, the version of V3 that's been online for the past two hours had a page missing and a major spelling error. If you downloaded it, click on the picture bellow for the fixed version, or follow this link:

I'm probably going to post up another version online soon, since there's apparently a lot of spelling errors and some of the pictures need to be re-done.


Click on this and the PDF will come up. I spent a lot of time on this issue. Hope you all enjoy it.


Dedicated to my father who just got a strike card in the mail the other day and Lil Wayne for making yet another bank robbery video for "Got Money," which I listened to about 50 times while working on this.

i'm on that libcom all day everyday

Debate between Libcomians and PARECONians. Somewhere John Zerzan couldn't care less. I'm excited, and liked Zerzan more when he was a Marxist.

PS - Gas is over 3.00 again? WTF!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Does Anyone Have?...

A link to "Queer Visibility in Commodity Culture" by Rosemary Henessey? Or have read it that can give me a thumbs up or down? Let me know.

The factory occupation in Korea has ended. Hats off to those comrades.

Lastly, there's a new essay out by 'Advance the Struggle' that I read today about the Oscar Grant revolt in Oakland earlier this year. It would be nice to hear their take on the text, "Unfinished Acts," by some comrades in the Bay Area. As Oakland heats up again from more killings and brutality, the iron is still fucking hot.

Reply to 'A Midwesterner'

In the spirit of comradely discussion (and also because my reply was too long for the comments page), here's an exchange with comrade on the post back.

"Sure I don't want patriarchy or heterosexism, but how does that mean that the class war will destroy them?" -

Well I would see those systems that we're talking about, as part of a way to organize society that benefits the elites ultimately, by making use of other parts of society to also organize and manage it in a certain way. For instance, the Taliban using the male head of every home as a 'state representative' to enforce patriarchy and control. Colonial elites creating a cacique (meaning chiefs, etc) class in order to better manage native populations, and so forth. Either with settlers, homophobes making sure people don't break up the nuclear family, or patriarchy helping to reproduce the nuclear family, and so on. I think any real class struggle is also a struggle against all of these forms as well. A class war fights to end all divisions within the proletarian class; thus generalizing all struggles, but also against the things which put us in those boxes in the first place.

"you should push a step farther to argue how that will come about, or how they are related." -

That's a good point. I would like to do that in the future. However, I don't think I can address them in these short points. In the next issue I would like to however. Or, perhaps other people will write on this subject as well. There's an excellent interview with a Bash Back member in V3, which touches I feel on some of this. Although, I think perhaps my approach maybe, dare I say, 'more Marxian' than theirs.

"Will the uncontrolled spread of wildcat strikes lead to a breakdown of the gendered division of labor?" -

Well, if wildcat strikes spread uncontrollably, then I assume the housewives will walkout as well! Since labor is gendered in this society, and it is needed in order to help in its constant reproduction, then hopefully a real rupture of capitalist social relations will lead to the destruction of gendered labor, and the recomposition of social life without such a construct. I think it is also the "place" (for lack of a term) for proletarian revolutionaries to push for such things and make the case for a destruction of such norms; especially while in the midst of struggle and revolt. I think the graphic novel "Breaking Free: The Adventures of Tin Tin," discusses this very well. Why should women struggle if they're just going to be used as sex objects and forced to do house work, even after the 'rev'? The class struggle must be, and is, a struggle against all such forms, or it is not class struggle.

Same with 'queer safe spaces.' Obviously in my mind, any liberated proletarian space that is not a 'safe space' for queer expression, is not a liberated proletarian zone by definition. Again, I think there is a task for prole revolutionaries to serious break down the divisions within the class that are all around us, of race, gender, and sexuality. Just as we attack the Left while being involved in struggle, we must attack those who would divide our class on the daily.

"Next, is the middle class part of the proletariat or not?" -

I think some of these people (that you mention) are working class, especially teachers by and large. Police are such a strange bunch. Not only do a lot of them get paid a lot, they kind of are in a class by themselves.

I was trying to make the point with the middle class positions that I listed that many of them are salary/wage earners true, but they also have a degree of social power within their profession. When Chomsky talked of the middle class, he stated that they are "expected to take an active role in social life," and act as guideposts for the rest of us. A high ranking professor at UC Berkeley not only teaches, but also might do studies for corporations or the government, write in influential journals, go on TV to talk about various issues, and perform a role as an adviser to a variety of institutions. This person I see as middle class, because they are talking on a role outside of just mere wage earner; and becoming more of a specialists and manager of social life.

On the other hand, a non-tenured professor, even one with a PhD, might look for work every semester, survive without benefits, be stuck in massive students loans, and also be afraid to organize on the job or speak out due to fear of getting fired, I see as a member of the working class.

As you state, these categories are murky at best; and race, gender, etc, all also make them more difficult to pin point. But I think that these categories are still useful and also point to various people within society have more or less agency in social life and in the workplace.

"Given the murkiness of this question, proletarian culture (which you note is dying) was one of the main tools for arbitrarily and positively denying cops and scabs access to proletarian identity. But this kind of culture is exactly the kind of self-affirmation you seem to hope to escape." -

I would say there is still elements of class consciousness within the class in regards to culture, just listen to most rap music. However, most of proletarian culture is 'non-political,' lacks a direction, and is made reactionary or counter-proletarian due to sexism, racism, homophobia, etc.

"And how does this unclarity affect your point in 9? Who exactly has been proletarianized in this crisis?" -

I think that the myth that "we are all middle class now," has been shot to shit. I think perhaps people can see more clearly that this is a class divided society; especially when they have made it clear that we must pay for the crisis of their system.

"but I'm not sure that the class relation has changed that much, that quickly." -

Perhaps 'proletarianization' is a word that I'm using in the wrong context, and I'll probably change it (one of the reasons I'm glad for this feedback). What I was trying to get at was that the current crisis has (at least in my eyes) made the class lines much more clear. The working family who bought an SUV and a large house last year is now facing layoffs and foreclosure. While they viewed themselves as middle class before based on what they could buy on credit and through sub-prime loans a few years ago, now the reality of their class position is much clearer.

"If anything, the population is being deproletarianized" -

Hmmm...interesting concept.

"Finally, what's up with that quote "Without violence, the class becomes decadent?" Is that early Mussolini?" -

Ha! Actually early Class War Federation (UK). I take it to me, that when we don't actively confront and fight for our interests, we become impotent and unaware of ourselves.

"Sorry if I've ended up using a harsh tone" -

No worries, thanks for the great feedback.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Notes on a New Proletarian Anarchism

Setting the Stage; Destroying the Scene:

1.)The class that is in the majority within anarchism will continue to pull in those of the same class to anarchism. The class that is the largest will be best suited to talking to those of the same class. The class composition of anarchism is directly related to the racial composition of anarchism. The class that holds control over what the anarchist movement produces; it's newspapers, journals, and other media, will put forward ideas that largely are articulated class positions from that class.
2.)Proletarians within anarchism are the minority. We seek to reverse this. We desire anarchism to be made up largely of proletarians. We desire this because proletarians are the largest segment of society. Proletarians have more of a reason to destroy Capital. However, we are proletarians because of the conditions which are imposed upon us. We seek not an identity, only face the reality of the project which is the destruction of class society.
3.)The proletarian class is made up of those who survive by selling their labor power on the market. It is also made up of those who directly reproduce this system, (housewives, school kids, the homeless, those involved in black market capitalism), yet still own no amount of capital that would allow them exit outside of their class position.
4.)The middle class can be seen the class that acts as a grouping of social managers and specialists that are the intermediaries between the proletariat and the ruling class.
5.)The ruling class is made up of those military, political, and economic elites which direct and control the apparatus of politics, the economy, and the military.
6.)Proletarian culture is almost extinct. Middle class values that seek to destroy the idea of class conflict and our own history and are replaced with their own values of finding the solutions to all problems within the marketplace of Capital and Democracy. Currently, the Left is largely a middle class world in which class violence and confrontation is disdained and participation within the market and politics is championed. The middle class discourse that we hear throughout society claims that the roles of citizen and consumer offer the solution to all problems. The Spectacle shows us that working class people are stupid, oversexed, and quick to become intoxicated. This myth helps to reinforce the idea that only middle class specialists can guide the proletariat in ending their problems, which are their own fault, and will end when the proletariat becoming middle class. The proletariat is denied the reality of its existence, it's history, and thus cannot begin to build a material force that will abolish itself and all of class society.
7.)The proletariat in the United States is divided. The 'devil's bargain' of white supremacy in an effort to break up the possible unification of the class. It established a system in which whites come to a position of racial superiority over the rest of the class. White supremacy must be attacked if class consciousness is to lead to class recomposition that will attack and destroy capital.
8.)Patriarchy and hetrosexism divides the class. Middle class feminism and the GLBT movement seeks to integrate women, queers, and others into Capital and politics. The destruction of class society means the destruction of patriarchy and hetrosexism.
9.)The current crisis has created a massive sweep of proletarianization and with it the possibility of creating class consciousness. Proletarian anarchists are in a much better position to get out their critique to other proletarians than middle class anarchists.
10.)Middle class anarchists should not be excluded from anarchism. Their class position and access to certain resources may prove useful. Our desire to 'proletarianize' anarchism is not a desire to drive them out; it is a desire to build a material force within the class in which we can abolish ourselves. Anarchism has served as a vehicle for the middle class for many years in doing just that; allowing them to abolish their class position. Either by dropping out, creating communities, are doing work as traitors to their class. We wish to abolish ourselves as well; however not by dropping out, but by becoming the force that can intervene in the social war which is class society. While the activity of middle class anarchists has brought many proletarian anarchists into the fold, since we have come over to the other side, we realize how many of us are left stuck in shit.

These are some principles for a new proletarian anarchism:

1.)Revolutionary proletarian propaganda. Much of the current literature that is produced by anarchism does not seek to talk to proletarians; it seeks to talk to other anarchists, many of whom are not proletarians. Proletarian anarchists must articulate their ideas to other proletarians. We must attack and critique the Left. We must give confidence to self-organized and insurrectionary elements within the class. This includes propaganda such as journals, papers, tabloids, online videos, blogs, graffiti and wheatpaste, and more in which we talk about local and global issues.
2.)Constant presence. We must be a presence within proletarian areas in our cities and towns. This means having our literature where people can get it. Having our graffiti and propaganda be visible to other proletarians. It means being a public material force that people know exists and they can come to. This visibility must be constant and build over a period of time.
3.)Intervention and participation. Where there is fire, we must bring gasoline. We must base our practical activity within the tensions that exist within the class; pushing to generalize all struggles, fight the Left, promote and strengthen revolutionary elements, and fight against reactionary forces within the class.
4.)Autonomy. We must make the class our commune. Other proletarians must become our mafia. We already are in the land of “stop snitching,” we are hoping to move towards the land of “permanent conflict with Capital while not snitching.”
5.)Attack. We must push towards conflict with class society; steering away with dialog and making demands to our enemies, or working in concert with class collaborators. We must build the conflictual nature of the class. “Without violence, the class becomes decadent.”
6.)Revolutionary solidarity. When one within the class is attacked, as are all. This cuts across racial, gender, and sexual lines. Actions against segments of the class result in the decomposition of the larger class as well as hurt all our material conditions. We must respond to attacks with attacks of our own. Solidarity means attack.

Monday, August 3, 2009

To Live and Drive in LA

For the third year, I attended the conference/bookfair/event thing in LA. I guess this wasn't a bookfair persay, which in some ways was kind of cool. There actually was no tabling the day of the conference, which meant a lack of anarchist literature (most of which isn't anarchist - which is largely I feel more comfortable calling myself an insurrectionary communist, or autonomist communist these days) but some cool workshops. I attended two put on my members of the Insane Dialectical Posse, which is a collection of cool left communists.

I love the stuff that people put on in LA, because there's a lot of diverse people. When I mean diverse, I don't mean, like one person that's non-white out of 10, I mean, pretty much the opposite. Caught up with old friends, and also met a new one. This one person from the ICC, and also snapped up two of their papers, one from the US, and the other from the UK. Despite the US one being pretty poorly edited (learn to use a "." comrades!), still better than 97% of the 'anarchist stuff out there.' Hung out with the good comrades from Phoenix Class War Council, as well as the fantastic people from Anarchist Black Cross Federation LA.

I'm really liking a lot of the ICC stuff, I'm going to try and get it distributed out here on West Coast, outside of lefty bookstores. The comrade that I met was from Turkey, which was really interesting to talk to him about, everything from his reflections of nationalism there to how cheap it was to go to school. Guess it's only $100, but as they stated, "It's still too much. Anything is too much!" Communist as fuck!

RAC, once again held it down. If you don't know about the Revolutionary Autonomous Communities group in LA, check them out. I saw their food program in action, it was pretty amazing. If you want an example of a program that has the potential to break out of the problems of FNB and become something, check out the LA folks.

Three things though. Every year at the the LA conferences and bookfairs, they've had both the Black Riders Liberation Party and also old Panthers speak. While I think it's cool that they're inviting the riders since a lot of anarchists work with them, as well as the older Panthers to talk about their history and such, I find it interesting that people that have views contrary to anarchism are better situated to articulate their ideas than anarchists. I've heard more of a game plan from Leninists and Black nationalists at these events than from anarchists themselves often. When are we going to start really articulating our ideas to people?

Second, where is the action? These events, as nice as they are, always leave so many people feeling kind of like, "Well, okay, now what?" During the conference there was talk on various local struggles going on, why can't we mobilize ourselves during these times to take action during these gatherings? It's happened in other places, let's have it happen here.

Lastily, I noticed that with the amount of less white people, there was less "white people shit." Aka, punk stuff, patches, etc. Now there's a bunch of stuff with Zapatista stuff all over it, and some booths with jewelry and earrings made in various styles. Are we trading something for another? I'm glad the makeup of anarchism is changing, but I'm still interested in getting more proles within anarchism from all colors, not just replacing the white vegan punk crustie for those that identify more so with other styles and tastes, but who still create that identity out of buying and consuming various items.

Anyway, hats off to you LA! Thanks to everyone who gave me a smoke, the homies who hooked it up for the room, the organizers, people who came by the MAC table, and everyone I'm forgetting.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

How Is It To Be Doing Being Making Total Destroy on Middle Class Anarchism?

Recent events, and the degree of their lameness, as articulated by comrade nostalgia on

So a bunch of batshit crazy buffoons come from out of town to a neighborhood they've never been to before, tell an anarchist convergence to get out of *their* community, and pretend it was an action against gentrification? I don't even know how much this is worth discussing, it's like having a political debate with some wingnut in People's Park about 2012 and Lizard People.

But seriously, what did this do but further highlight the irrelevance of a handful of anarchists to actual communities of color?

I remember being at the APOC caucus at last year's crimethinc convergence and at least one of the clowns responsible for this action was there whining about some white woman dancing in a grass skirt being cultural appropriation for a half hour. When I suggested that we use the rare opportunity of having so many anarchists of color in one place to discuss work we do in communities of color and ways we can become more relevant to these communities, his response was ":-|..........................". Ya'll are some scared to work in communities of color ass mutha fuckas, so you pretend to struggle against white supremacy by starting some dumb ass scene gossip that no one outside of your circle gives a flying fuck about.

If you really think a bunch of traveler kids rolling around in some dirt for 5 days is responsible for the gentrification in Garfield, you are out of your god damn mind. Wasn't the Bloomfield Garfield Corporation, the group responsible for evicting working class bars on Penn Avenue and working to raise property values in the neighborhood attempting to get the convergence evicted?

Ya'll are really on some astronomically dumb Symbionese Liberation Army, New World Order, Area 51 type bullshit.

10 years from now, I hope to be in the streets defending the commune from the police, while ya'll are going to be sitting in some room with 3 wingnuts working on your new zine and arguing about whether to spell "person" with a "y" or a "7".

...have made me question my role in the disgusting beast that is identity politics. As engine summer stated on the 'Smack a White Boy' thread:

check it out everyone, the prole anarchists hate the middle class anarchists, the anarcho liberals and anarchafems hate the insurrectionaries (who hate windows), and of course, apoc hates white anarchists!

...I feel like I have to rearticulate my ideas and what I mean by them, as to avoid confusion or a lumping together with people I don't have an affinity with.

I started writing about being working class within anarchism because I felt that myself and my friends were outside of it. I felt that what I wanted out of an anarchist movement was nowhere to be found and that much of this had to do with not (just) the class composition of the movement (meaning, the degree in which middle class people populate it), but also the substance of which the movement produced. For me, the activist and leftist elements of anarchism I found to be middle class, or coming from a middle class line of thought. Meaning, regardless of if working class people or middle class people were doing the 'work' or not, I still found the product of most anarchists to be in line with middle class ideology and values. Those values were based around people not struggling with those who were faced with similar conditions, but instead trying to set examples and 'show people' a better way of being. It meant making symbolic gestures to capital instead of taking tension and making rupture.

Having been a young person once, and having to sit through meetings with liberals and leftists who openly identified with being middle class (as they were high ranking professors, lawyers, etc), I learned what it meant to have the drive for direct action stifled by people who were scared of it. As an anarchist, I learned what it was like to exist within a movement that ultimately offered me no chance in it changing or bettering my material conditions - because largely it was uninterested in them.

I reasoned, what if this was different. What if people who were affected by the daily realities of existing only by selling their labor power (and all those within the class who help in that reproduction) within anarchism made it into something that (while outside of activism) struggled for not only communism, but also better things here and now. Building the commune of the class.

I reasoned that the anarchist movement would look quiet different than it does today. If we did want to see that change, I reasoned, then anarchists who come from working class backgrounds should step up and become more vocal and put more energy into the projects that they considered to represent their ideas. We should take initiative.

I wanted our conditions to guide our activity, but I did not want to create another identity politic. There is also the question of what to do with those within anarchism who are not working class. What do we do with them? Do we 'evict' them. I work with people first and foremost on if I agree with them or not. I then work with them on the basis of if they actually will do the work and make the effort or not.

Having said that, my goal is to make the most impact with people who live in my local area, who are faced the brunt of Capital, i.e. the working class, which is a huge and very diverse group.

Anyway, what I'm coming to firstly is that I first think that the term "Make the Total Destroy on Middle Class Anarchism" is problematic, firstly because I haven't even been public about what I think the middle class is, although I have an analysis of it myself (which I will go into later). Secondly, because I think what I was really trying to say that the main problem with anarchism was in how it goes about doing things, not just in it's class composition.

In the end, my goal with starting Vengeance was not to make middle class people feel bad about being anarchists, or push them away. My goal was always to inspire working class people to take imitative and speak up for themselves and to do work and projects that they found to be directly beneficial to them. More importantly for them to break out of the anarchist subculture, and to break into the class around them.

In the coming days I hope to map out some notes which will be the last part of the new Vengeance.