You must log in or register to comment.


selver wrote (edited )

Anarchists have ethics & beliefs besides a vulgar class analysis, and some Marxists consider that to be liberal. Ie. an antagonism towards political authority is liberal because it opposes their vanguardism & dictatorship of the proletariat.

Excerpt about this from The Distinct Radicalism of Anarchism:

This distinction between radicalism and superficial but supposedly practical impressions helps get at another divide in language and analysis. Both marxists and anarchists use the term “liberal” as an epithet. But for quite different reasons.

To the marxist the central sin of liberalism is its focus on individual liberty, a preposterous and distracting bit of bourgeois moralism. Thus naturally the marxist sees anarchists as basically another stripe of liberal.

Conversely to the anarchist the central sin of liberalism is its limited horizons and insufficient audacity. The chief tenant of liberalism, in the anarchists’ eyes, might well be Keynes’ infamous quote, “in the long run we’re all dead.” Liberalism settles for crippling half-measures, happily trading away the world and freedom of future generations for small short term gains. They are happy to make the state more powerful and deeply ingrained in our lives, to appeal to the cops and those in authority, to seek the placidity of neutralized struggle, so as to avoid cataclysm or expensive and grueling resistance. Liberals have a short horizon, they want what they can get now. And thus likewise from this perspective anarchists view marxists as just another variant of liberals. At best their dictatorship of the proletariat accomplishes a few things quickly at the expense of giving up even greater aspirations in the long run. The centralized coercive apparatus the marxists seek as a means being just another version of the same myopic Faustian bargain that the liberals make with their state. Both power structures once embraced will metastasize and grow to full blown authoritarianism. But the marxists, just like the liberals, express little true interest in this danger. Either because they ultimately just want power, or because their “practicality” blinds them to any and all “theoretical” dangers just over the horizon.

Similarly liberals and marxists have little appreciation for suffering in the here and now when that suffering is outside their “practical” focus. The liberal cares a lot about the problems that are teed up for them, never mind what’s actually of greatest stake or impact. Similarly the marxist (and the more vulgar social justice advocates) develop a kind of laser focus on some specific categories or forms of domination, often completely unequipped or unwilling to address more nuanced or complicated situations. Indeed just as marxist organizations have become particularly infamous among the activist left for tolerating and protecting abusers and rapists in their leadership, everyone is aware of circles of social justice where horrific interpersonal abuse is given a pass or becomes clouded and impossible to speak cleanly of because the perpetrators behavior isn’t easily definable along traditional dimensions of heteropatriarchal and white supremacist categories. The now quite old joke “If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face while shouting ‘but this isn’t Formal Oppression!’ forever” reveals just how insufficient the “practical” lens can be. Aligning yourself against the currently most prominent expressions of power and domination does not equate preparing yourself to resist new or more local and particular instantiations of power, which can be all the more insidious or silencing for their relatively uniqueness or rarity.

While there’s no doubt often immense utility to the practical, the stakes in this world are too high to sit back and take things for granted. The marxist and liberals both protest that their theoretical picture is surely nuanced enough and if any dramatic limitation to that picture arises it will surely be adapted to quickly. But history shows that oversimplifications into neat rhetorical frameworks have their own long-lasting momentum. People come to associate not with their original ethical motivations (if they even notice them) but merely in terms of the affiliations and strategies that once derived from such. The crude macroscopic patterns or tendencies that may well be correctly identified eventually get detached from their underlying roots. Those self-identified as underdogs remain stubbornly self-identified underdogs even when they come to rule regimes that slaughter millions, set up gulags, or occupy Palestine.


ziq wrote (edited )

Liberal means a proponent of free market capitalism and private property. Anarchists don't like capitalism because we recognize it as theft.


edmund_the_destroyer wrote

Well, it's a complicated term in the US because the right uses 'liberal' as a generic derogatory term for anyone that doesn't line up with the mainstream Republican Party positions.


Juanda wrote

I understand that liberalism are pro-capitalist that but look leftypol said that are run by liberals i don't think that make sense: "Libcom is run by a liberal retard, but you can search it for some good books/documents"


ziq wrote (edited )

leftypol are tankies (state capitalists), they think anyone that doesn't lick stalin's boots is a liberal. To them a liberal is anyone who prefers free market capitalism to state capitalism.

EDIT: And also, they think anarchists are liberals for reasons only known to them.


Juanda wrote

But i thought that leftypol are 8chan board for all leftists how can leftypol become board for tankie?


GaldraChevaliere wrote

Leftypol is exactly what it sounds like. It's the pol culture with mirrored politics. They're just as racist, sexist and awful as pol is, they just choose a different form of authoritarian politics. Pol wasn't originally a neo-nazi joint either, but they still took over and dominated the culture. It's the same thing with leftypol and stalinists/maoists.


Notech wrote

Don't expect more from /leftypol/ and libcom probably call them fascists in return

Liberal is a de facto slur for the left and right to call anybody they had disagreement.


hasbrochem wrote

this is from the book "the anatomy of fascism" by the historian robert paxton

We will need a clear understanding of fascism’s two principal coalition partners, liberals and conservatives. In this book I use liberalism in its original meaning, the meaning in use at the time when fascism rose up against it, rather than the current American usage noted above. European liberals of the early twentieth century were clinging to what had been progressive a century earlier, when the dust was still settling from the French Revolution. Unlike conservatives, they accepted the revolution’s goals of liberty, equality, and fraternity, but they applied them in ways suitable for an educated middle class. Classical liberals interpreted liberty as individual personal freedom, preferring limited constitutional government and a laissez-faire economy to any kind of state intervention, whether mercantilist, as in the early nineteenth century, or socialist, as later on. Equality they understood as opportunity made accessible to talent by education; they accepted inequality of achievement and hence of power and wealth. Fraternity they considered the normal condition of free men (and they tended to regard public affairs as men’s business), and therefore in no need of artificial reinforcement, since economic interests were naturally harmonious and the truth would out in a free marketplace of ideas. This is the sense in which I use the term liberal in this book, and never in its current American meaning of “far Left." Conservatives wanted order, calm, and the inherited hierarchies of wealth and birth. They shrank both from fascist mass enthusiasm and from the sort of total power fascists grasped for. They wanted obedience and deference, not dangerous popular mobilization, and they wanted to limit the state to the functions of a “night watchman" who would keep order while traditional elites ruled through property, churches, armies, and inherited social influence.

as he says, murikkkans like to use at in reference to those they consider to be "far left". there are some on the right that are trying to reclaim "liberal" calling themselves classical liberals, which is not just historically accurate but also make sense outside the insular usa where the likes of reagan and thatcher are considered to be liberals.

on a side note: from the original meaning of "liberal" one can understand that this is what ancaps really are, not anarchists and not using it in the pejorative.