anarchist_critic wrote

Well, there's lots of reasons people don't contribute. Yes, a belief in rewards is one of them. Others include time pressure (from overwork and social obligations), illness, depression, certain disabilities, lack of "skills", lack of self-confidence, and all kinds of attitudes towards the people doing the work (from hero-worship to resentment and "feeling excluded"). The thing is, a lot of initiatives keep running in spite of a lot of the participants not contributing. Yes, some fold. They fold at the point where the core group burn out, or the resources needed are greater than those the core group can put in. A lot of others keep going. I think there's less energy now than in the recent past, but the main reason is that everyone's overworked and overstressed. It's a lot easier to put energy into projects when you have a stable job with low hours or better still, you're managing to survive without working.


anarchist_critic wrote

Wow, we're really in the world of intelligent critique today, aren't we? Not even off the bottom rung there, pal.


therealmidnite wrote 18 days ago: You know, I prefer Trump. I really do.

Yeah, I'm really a pile of shit compared to a Trump fan like you!

No wonder you argue like Trump. "Loser. Sad."


anarchist_critic wrote

The most bullshit critique of the post-left. "Waaah waaah you're not going on about racism and colonialism every five seconds and that means you're racist". "Anything that's not going on about race every five seconds Embeds White Assumptions and therefore is racist". People coming up with this bullshit never bother to actually prove that there's any "white assumptions" in the pieces they criticise. They just assert that, since it disagrees with them, there must be. Lupus Dragonowl destroyed this line of argument years ago, showing how it was rooted in ressentiment.

It's pretty absurd to accuse the post-left of "minimizing direct relations of force" when so much of post-left theory is insurrectionary and anti-pig. Tiqqun say that "we are living under a police occupation". How the fuck is that minimizing direct relations of force?!

It's similarly absurd to suggest that the post-left ignores "Black and Native social death" given the strength of anarcho-primitivism and the frequency of accounts of genocide of indigenous peoples. Not to mention that Ward Churchill is Native, Aragorn! is Native, Rod Coronado is Native, Hakim Bey is Muslim, Alejandro de Acosta is Latino, and Fredy Perlman is Jewish. And that there's insu cells in Turkey, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Indonesia.

Oh, and by the way, capitalism DOES encourage middle-class and politically aspirational Black, Native, women, LGBTQ+ and other marginalised people to produce themselves as docile conformist subjects by identifying with their marginalised identities. And a lot of them fall for it. That's where idpol comes from. This shit isn't being formulated by black kids in the ghettos or Brazilian shanty town residents or starving Ethiopians, it's being formulated by middle-class academics on $100,000-a-year contracts, whose job is to channel and tame the radicalism of marginalised groups. It's in their interest to deny the importance of capitalism and statism, and focus instead on racially divisive themes (which divide and rule the oppressed) and on trivia such as "cultural appropriation" and language policing and how many black people are in movies.

Social death is easily theorised within non-idpol radicalism in relation to the demand to conform and the "relative surplus population" (see Karatasli et al. on the Arab Spring, and Clover's Riot, Strike, Riot for examples). The relative surplus population does not produce value and so is treated as disposable by capital, and sometimes its brutal treatment serves as a threat to included workers. It tends to be racialised because of the historical distribution of primary and secondary labour market roles, but there's a growing white male sector of the relative surplus population who were very prominent in the 2011 unrest. Because the left can't unglue its eyes from the antics of middle-class spokespeople for the "marginalised", this layer are effectively pushed towards the alt/far-right (and by the way, a lot of the non-white relative surplus population are also in the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, RSS, Mara Salvatrucha, Mungiki, PCC, or whatever the local equivalents are, because this style of gang/sect politics is actually a very effective survival strategy).

Post-left anarchy actually has the most effective response to the situation of the relative surplus population: recovery of subsistence, creation of autonomous zones, struggle against state repression, immediatism, illegalism, squatting, skipping, Travelling, DIY. Creating a world where no-one is disposable. While idpols whine to the powerful to check their privilege and stop being so mean to us poor oppressed middle-class academics, post-left anarchy is actually building another world - and idpols are doing their best to sabotage it.

If you can't see how alienation, capitalism, the state, prisons, biopolitics, industrial society, ecocide, are structural oppressions just as significant as race or gender - and that recognising and fighting these oppressions is not at all a matter of "white assumptions" - then you're not fighting the system, you're a liberal fighting for racial and gender equality WITHIN the system.

And if you're "against innocence" then you're FOR GUILT, which means you're FOR SUPEREGO, which means you're AGAINST DESIRE, which means you're part of the authoritarian system of repression, inhibition and hatred created by civilised society.


anarchist_critic wrote

People aren't self-interested rational individuals, so the free rider problem as formulated in rational choice theory/game theory/neoclassical economics doesn't really exist as far as I'm concerned. People won't overexploit resources or free-ride just because there's an opportunity to free-ride, and it won't necessarily overstrain systems even if they do. There's a meme went round recently about people who get free water (or pay a fixed sum for free water), they don't leave their taps on all day or drink as much water as they can stomach, just because it's free. And I can think of a lot of examples where a small number of people put in all the energy to run projects which benefit a much larger number - everything from Indymedia back in the day, to something like Calais Migrant Solidarity, to social centres where a small core group do most of the work.

However, I think there's a slightly different problem in actual collectives which looks quite similar. If a lot of people are perceived as freeloading then other people sometimes become less emotionally motivated to participate. It doesn't seem to affect all projects the same way (e.g. FNB or refugee solidarity don't fall apart because some recipients "freeload"; it doesn't seem to affect Bushmen or Ilongot hunters) but probably impacts more on projects where there's a goal of building community, or where a few people are doing a lot of work. Communes, festivals, social centres, even black blocs (I remember hearing about an older group getting fed up with younger people expecting them to always take the lead in the bloc). Sometimes community work if it's expected the community will graduate from "service users" to activists and they never do. This kind of reaction seems to correlate with the core group suffering burnout or overwork. So, there can be a social centre run for years by a core group with a lot of "freeloaders", and it isn't a problem, but then the core group get fed up with the situation and stop putting their energy in. When people are buzzing with the energy of a new project or an effective project, they have energy to spare and they don't really care if everyone's pulling their weight. When people are more stressed and frustrated then it becomes a much bigger issue and the recriminations start.

I don't know if resentment of freeloaders is an emotional hangover from capitalism or if it's deeper in human psychology. If the former then it might be enough simply to expect freeloaders and treat it as a legitimate kind of engagement, so it no longer affects motivation. Otherwise it's a question of how to increase motivation to contribute. And there's quite a few possible answers to this, other than the usual ones of economic incentives, coercion, or tying benefits to contributions. Emotional incentives, ludic practices, social status benefits, learnt values, etc. I think if people value a project, and know it needs their contribution, they will usually contribute. I also think the resentment of freeloaders is itself a hurdle we probably need to overcome, so as to enable us to provide and receive free services (which we're gonna need to live without markets and states). Capitalism both encourages us to treat services as provider/user binaries and not contribute, and also encourages us to resent people who don't contribute. So the problem's mainly psychological - abundance versus scarcity mentalities. I'd expect that if participation is rewarding enough for contributors, and there's enough redundant supply/capacity that it exceeds demand from contributors, then the existence of free riders shouldn't be a problem. So, it's a question of how to configure emotional and energetic flows within an assemblage so as to maintain the buzz which makes people want to "contribute". It's not an exact science and I can't theorise it much beyond this, because nobody AFAIK has done concrete research on how these kinds of energies are summoned, maintained, or dissipated.


anarchist_critic wrote

OK, four problems.

  1. I don't live in Canada, or any settler-colony.
  2. I don't own any land. Not even a house or apartment.
  3. If I did own my home then chances are, I'd need it as a place to live (doh), and likely I'd have a mortgage, meaning I can't transfer it freely to anyone.
  4. This article is all about how expensive and bureaucratically difficult it is to transfer ownership, so even if you try, the government won't let you.

Also BTW, land ownership as a notion did not exist on "Turtle Island" prior to the arrival of Europeans.

Now answer my question please: If you don't want to send anyone back to Europe and it isn't about guilt then what's your problem with the statement "I have as much right to inhabit this land as anybody else does, regardless of my ancestor's actions"?


anarchist_critic wrote

Oh, and if you don't want to send anyone back to Europe and it isn't about guilt then what's your problem with the statement "I have as much right to inhabit this land as anybody else does, regardless of my ancestor's actions".


anarchist_critic wrote

would it be necessary to offer an incentive to further motive people towards action?

Incentive theory (RCT, game theory etc) generally assumes self-interested rational actors. Anarchism generally doesn't.

Also "incentives" doesn't have to mean material wealth. The potlatch system was all about giving away/destroying wealth in order to accrue status. This is the basis for the "gift economy" idea - originally, gifts would be given competitively to confer status (among the Tlingit if I remember rightly). I'm not quite sure if unequally accruing status through socially beneficial actions is a problem for anarchists or not.

There's also a concept of "emotional incentives" which explains seemingly irrational actions (see: Elizabeth Wood on peasant insurgency in El Salvador). In other words, people do stuff because it feels good, empowering, self-expressive, rehumanising, etc. This overlaps a bit with ludic (play) anarchism as theorised by people like Bob Black - basically, we motivate people to do stuff by turning everything into a game (I've found this works miracles at getting kids to do useful stuff BTW).

In all the varieties of anarchism I'm familiar with, I'd also expect the amount of work to be a lot less than today - which means the level of motivation needed would also be less.

Your mention of "gaming the system" makes me think of the free rider problem. Again, the free rider problem doesn't really exist unless we assume rational subjects. But, in practice, I've seen plenty of issues at communes, social centres and gatherings along the general lines of free-riding (drainbows, collective resources getting re-privatised, small core groups who get fed up of doing all the work...) It's not so much that it makes the project unviable as that it pissed off and demoralises the other participants. And this gives rise to things like minimum compulsory work requirements and communally imposed rotas to make sure people "do their share". I don't know if this is a learnt reaction which is carried over from living in capitalism. I know that some stateless societies (Ilongot, Bushmen) effectively make a public secret out of differential task-performance so as to avoid hierarchies emerging, e.g. they'll say everyone caught the same amount of game even if they didn't.

TBH I think a bigger problem is, how do we stop ancaps with Recreational Nuclear Warheads (TM), or random gangsters/bandits, from stealing our land and starting hierarchies up all over again. It seems to me, there has to be some technological advantage of defensive over offensive weapons to avoid this.


anarchist_critic wrote

indigenous peoples are still suffering in miserable squalor, still being raped, starved, poisoned, sterilized, imprisoned, shot dead


while the descendants of the europeans that took their land and forced them onto concentration camps are still enjoying the spoils of their genocide today

Which Europeans? Which spoils?

You'll find that most of the land is owned by the US government and big companies, as Churchill shows. The average white working-class American is getting crumbs from the boss's table at most. Hell, the average income in America is below the cost of living these days.

And the little land/water they have left CONTINUES to be taken from them at gunpoint by Europeans. Colonization never ended

Again, which Europeans?

I'm sure this Reddit guy you've got this vendetta against, is not going around taking people's land and water at gunpoint. Likely the people doing this are pigs. And they're doing it on behalf of (again) the bosses and the government.

So, OK - we hate bosses, the government, and pigs. Anarchists have always hated bosses, the government, and pigs. Conscious white working-class Americans also hate bosses, the government, and pigs. So let's all get together across racial divided and fuck up the bosses, the government, and the pigs. Calling white working-class or even middle-class Americans "colonisers" and telling them to get back in their lane and give up their sense of entitlement to even be on "Turtle Island" is just making enemies you don't need to make.


anarchist_critic wrote

Ah, I see the idpols are back.

I don't know this guy you're picking on. Maybe he's as bad as you think. But you idpols are literally driving people to reaction with your personally attacking, hyperbolic BS. If white people are told they are worthless "colonisers" whose suffering doesn't matter because of their "privilege", and men are held personally responsible for the crimes of "masculinity", this produces predictable defensive reactions. It produces racist and sexist reactions in people who aren't necessarily all that bigoted, but who don't like being attacked based on their ascribed group membership.

Anarchism does not and never has defined people by ascribed attributes or "properties", it defines people as unique beings in open-ended networks who are also composed of multiple forces of becoming. In reducing people to ascribed attributes, idpol is absolutely reactionary.

No borders... except to keep white people out

If you aren't doing what I say then you're part of the problem

Being against something doesn't mean you're against it

White people are "colonisers" and should STFU

Everyone should feel very guilty about shit someone else did 200 years ago

This isn't helping Native peoples in the slightest. It's just helping middle-class college students guilt-trip naive white people into being their footsoldiers.

You're being a bit too literal

Yeah, not everyone likes bandying around of buzzwords and insults.

THIS is how you do anarcho-indigenism: Notice the concrete proposal on pp. 12-13 which leads to a Native American autonomous territory without anyone "going back to Europe" or even being kicked out of local areas. Notice the close connection between indigenism, ecology, sustainability, and anti-capitalism. (Churchill was part of the anarchist movement of the 1990s/2000s which is now dismissed as "white", and was completely supportive of targeting global summits, corporate chains and so on).

Notice how on p. 11 he dismisses the idea of sending people back to Europe as "the “Great Fear,” the reactionary myth that any substantive native land recovery would automatically lead to the mass dispossession and eviction of individual non-Indian home owners,,, Do all of you really foresee Indians standing out on the piers of Boston and New York City, issuing sets of waterwings to long lines of non-Indians so they can all swim back to the Old World? Gimme a break". He emphasises that land claims target government and corporate holdings. I wonder how he feels about the way settler-colonialism theory now does its utmost to fuel the Great Fear, and hence the reactionary resistance to indigenous self-determination!

Wanna know what anarcha-indigenist Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui thinks of your "decolonial" BS? "The decolonial is an obnoxious fashionable neologism"... we need to get beyond the "indigenous resentment and non-indigenous guilt".

Voices like Churchill's and Cusicanqui's have been pushed aside by middle-class academics of Native American origin, who play a dangerous media game of triggering white defensiveness to "prove" that racism exists, while also leveraging white guilt to support their own agenda of liberal incorporation within the status quo. Not wanting to smash capitalism or western civilisation, they instead raise vague arguments about epistemic privilege, discursive construction of identity, vague historic responsibilities and other issues which feed easily into a reformist agenda of transferring a share of power to themselves, a middle-class elite. (Similar elites within the black, Latin@, gay, feminist, postcolonial, disabled, and other historically marginalised communities are doing exactly the same).

Anyone who knows European history knows that European peasants were dispossessed of their land. Many of those fleeing to America were refugees. For example, Jews persecuted in Eastern Europe, and Irish people fleeing from the potato famine (which was caused by land grabs and monoculture). Once there, they were exploited by the emerging American bourgeoisie. Settler-colonialism on the frontier was used as a safety-valve to reduce labour militancy.

Those who realised their actual interests ended up in "triracial isolate" communities composed of Native Americans, runaway slaves, and poor whites fleeing capitalism. They lived as autonomous zones and neo-tribes in remote areas beyond the elite's reach.

"Race" was invented as a divide-and-rule tactic by the bourgeoisie - to hurt the interests of both black workers and white workers.

Anarchism is not and has never been about GUILT. Anarchism comes from the id, not the superego. Anarchism is about living freely, not about feeling infinitely responsible for oppressions caused by other people.

If you wanna fight colonialism then start by fighting the ongoing dispossession which is happening RIGHT NOW in West Papua, Brazil, the Niger Delta and Oaxaca. Just because the people there don't have Facebook accounts or the right rhetoric about how triggered they feel by white male ignorance, they get utterly ignored by American anarchists. But they are actual hunter-gatherers and subsistence farmers fighting against being submerged in capitalism. And they are being displaced partly by companies which are based in the US and are easy targets.

Fuck idpol, smash capitalism.


anarchist_critic wrote

Anarchism means being against all hierarchy, or at least all formal hierarchy. Being against "unjust hierarchy" is liberalism.

The answer to the question would look quite different depending if the future anarchist society consists of ancoms, primmies, egoists, or some other variety. Ancoms are quite happy to use general assemblies with mass votes, or even democratic systems with delegates provided the delegates are elected and recallable (and probably mandated by the voters as to how to vote). Primmies are opposed on principle to large-scale projects, as division of labour and technological complexity are believed to lead to hierarchy. Egoists believe it is possible to create a "union of egoists" for a common purpose, only if the autonomy of each actor within the project is respected.

This text: written in 1921 doesn't directly discuss large-scale projects, but includes a lot of consideration of matters like roads, bridges and sewage systems. Answers 5, 12, 13, 15, and 23 all relate indirectly to the quesion

Ursula LeGuin's novel The Dispossessed involves a more-or-less ancom society with a regulated industrial economy. To avoid hierarchy, regulative functions are performed randomly by computer algorithm.

Generally a large-scale project can be broken down into smaller-scale projects assigned to subgroups which function like affinity groups. Each group would focus on its own small area without hierarchy.

I'm not sure why you mention medical research, as most medical research is carried out by small research teams or individuals. Are you thinking of clinical trials? In this case, an anarchist society would just need volunteers. For groups other than primmies, there's nothing objectionable about a researcher or research team putting out a call for 15,000 volunteers who give consent to take part in a predesigned study. The researcher has authoritative status but they don't have command authority as the participants give informed consent. Also in the news today:

By the way, there's a lot of examples of large-scale processes which are organised as emergent or swarm systems, without leadership or hierarchy.

The anti-capitalist protests of 1999-2001 mobilised hundreds of thousands of people without formal leadership or command power.

The Tupi-Guarani people (who were not entirely anarchist as they had gender hierarchies, but they did not have any central power structure) were able to put out armies of tens of thousands against the Spanish conquistadors.

The Open Source/Free Software movement has managed collaborative projects involving significant numbers of researchers without formal hierarchy.

These are just a few examples. There's more in Colin Ward's "Anarchy in Action", Barclay's "Societies without the State" and Gelderloos's "Anarchy Works!"


anarchist_critic wrote

So-called anarchists are really into relying on bosses to use their authority for our benefit? What is the world coming to?

The way I see it, there's three basic options. One: use it as a venting opportunity, call them some names and have a flame war. If possible, pwn them in the eyes of the audience by making them look stupid. If you're on the chans or similar sites then communication works rather like "the dozens": the "winner" is whoever tears down or provokes the other person without showing loss of cool themselves. With our history of Situationism and culture jamming, we should be way better at this than the fash, and it's pretty disturbing that we aren't right now. But, this isn't an option if you're easily triggered by whatever topics they're spewing on.

Two: ignore or block them, on the assumption they're doing it to get a reaction. This is the best response if you're dealing with someone who you suspect is not a literal fascist and is spouting fascist shit to get a reaction. This is also the best way to not get upset and not let them derail discussions or disrupt what are meant to be left or anarchist communities. The danger is that they just go troll somewhere else or get increasingly isolated and radicalised hanging out in fascist-only spaces, secure in the knowledge that they're "censored" and "silenced" everywhere else. It's also not an option if you're in an anonymous free-for-all space or a space where the mods won't ban them (some fash have got very clever about staying just inside the rules while also using dog-whistles that we and they recognise).

Three: try to talk them out of fascism. Here, you can either use nonviolent communication or rational argument. It occasionally works (see but not very often. IMO anarchists need to get a lot better at both rational argument and NVC, but its easier to hone the former than the latter on fascists because their logic is really shit and their tone is really aggressive. You have to be a fucking saint to use NVC with fash trolls because they know just how to get people's threat-perceptions sky-high, but I've seen reports of success from people like Marshall Rosenberg (who's Jewish) and Vishwam Jamie Heckert (who's gay) when dealing with far-right abuse. Another approach is to try to talk to them about the underlying grievances which manifest in their fascist politics - particularly, to talk about class politics and globalisation and how workers are exploited everywhere. I've found the last of these the most effective, even though it's not my go-to strategy as an egoist. Your average internet fascist is either a downwardly mobile, working-class or lower-middle-class white person from the American or European rustbelt, or an extremely marginalised shut-in who's effectively been forced out of public spaces by the very high levels of stress and anxiety. They have justified grievances but they're taking them out on the wrong people. The internet is actually a good place to talk to these people without the risk of getting punched. But, this isn't going to work if they're political entrepreneurs who are using far-right ideas manipulatively, or if they're a troll in the classic sense, who's saying offensive things for "the lulz". And you have to be able to stay calm when they start name-calling.


anarchist_critic OP wrote

OK then smart-alec, explain to me what the "unconscious" means to you, and what you mean by "structure" (as in "patriarchy is a structure") and "culture" (as in "rape culture exists").

I'm particularly interested in why you think your preferred tactical repertoire (accountability, exclusion, non-tolerance) will have the desired effect on "structure", "culture" and the "unconscious".


anarchist_critic OP wrote

if you don't believe in rape culture then how did hillary clinton successfully defend rapists in court by victim blaming

OK, here's a little primer in epistemology. Observed facts are like stars in the sky. Humans create meaning by joining together stars into constellations. The lines which join the constellations don't really exist, we have to create them to make meaning. The stars could also be arranged in different constellations, even though as observed facts, they're still the exact same stars in the exact same place.

Idpol plugs certain observed facts (“rape is relatively common”, “most rapists are men”, “most rapists are never convicted”, “people don't automatically believe rape survivors”, “lawyers try to get rapists off by saying the victim consented”, “people vote for Trump even though he's a rapist”) and join them together into a constellation. There's a simplistic idpol constellation which joins things in very particular ways. It also joins in the imaginary lines between the stars, which are, “culture and structure are sets of beliefs and behaviors”, “culture and structure can be shifted by tweaking incentives, deterrents and opportunity structures”, “patriarchy is a structure and rape culture is a culture in this particular sense”. Using these lines to join up the facts, you arrive at the “obvious” conclusion that people vote for Trump or lawyers get rapists off because of pervasive beliefs, which are part of patriarchy as a structure, which can be destroyed by altering incentive-structures and opportunity-structures.

But the same stars (facts) can also be joined up by different imaginary lines, sometimes to other stars, sometimes to the same stars in different ways. For instance, one can join together “lawyers try to get rapists off by saying the victim consented” with “lawyers try to get anarchists off riot charges by saying they were just peacefully protesting” or “lawyers try to get murderers off by saying they acted in self-defence”. All a lawyer has to do is to create a sufficiently convincing counternarrative that the judge or jury isn't sure “beyond reasonable doubt” that the person is guilty (they don't have to “sympathise with” or even believe the rapist, they just have to be minimally unsure whether he did it). One can join together “people voted for Trump even though he's a rapist” with “people voted for Trump even though he's not a competent politician” and “people voted for Trump even though he's going to cut their healthcare”. People vote for politicians for stupid reasons. Or take the statement “patriarchy is a structure”. This is more abstract than the others, but in a sense it's an observable fact. But it doesn't have to be joined to the behaviorist/Third Way view of structure. Marxist-feminists believe patriarchy is a system, but it's a system at an economic and socioeconomic level, it's not determined by culture or behavior. For example, the fact that women are paid less and there's no state-provided childcare means that women stay in relationships even if they're abused. No change in beliefs or individual behaviors is going to alter that – only a change in economic system, or at least in government policies. The material difference in economic power causes the cultural difference in status and the direction of abuse. Same stars, different lines.

Actually I wonder how far you'd push the Trump thing. I don't know if you're an “anarchists never vote” type or an “everyone has to vote for Hillary else they're racist” type. If the latter, then what happens if there's a “complex intersectional” situation where a sexual predator with good politics is running against a non-predator whose policies will directly harm women or other oppressed groups So for example, suppose it's 1996 and Bill Clinton's running against George Bush senior. You know Clinton has better politics but you also know he's a sexual predator. Would you actually be prepared to vote for Bush? What if Trump had been assassinated, and Hillary Clinton (who defended rapists in court, is married to and supports the career of a sexual predator, and who you might also have decided by believe-the-victim rules is running a pedo racket) is running against Mike Pence? You know Pence is an utter misogynist but he's probably not a sexual predator because he won't even be alone in a room with a woman (I kid you not). Or, what if it was JFK against Barry Goldwater? It's come out that JFK has “seduced” numerous women, would you be prepared to vote for the guy who's going to nuke Vietnam?

revolutionary action involves combating capitalism directly

Again the trouble is, you're probably not using “combating”, “capitalism”, or “directly” in the sense Bakunin or Malatesta was, or in the sense that I would. I don't believe capitalism is a structure in the sense of beliefs and behaviors. I believe capitalism is a socioeconomic structure in the external sense. We resist this structure to the extent that we disrupt it, and/or live otherwise. It isn't present everywhere and it isn't all-powerful. We fight capitalism by physically defending the ZAD, shutting down the stock exchange, defending squats, occupying factories, reclaiming the streets, providing goods free of charge, seizing land, dumpster diving, pirating software, organising base unions (among other things). I've never seen an idpol fight capitalism (some of them say they do but that's empty rhetoric). But if idpols fight capitalism the way they fight patriarchy and white supremacy, it would look something like this. First one identifies a “capitalist culture” composed of beliefs, assumptions, habits and behaviors which “sustain capitalism”. These might extend from big ones (like running a multinational company) to tiny ones (like buying a loaf of bread). Second one attaches moral opprobrium to these beliefs/behaviors and “calls out” or sanctions people who engage in them. Someone caught buying a loaf of bread gets expelled from the scene because they're importing capitalist culture and therefore are unsafe to be around. One might take a term like “commodity fetishism” and turn it into a swearword. “You just committed Commodity Fetishism by spending money and thus behaving as if money has value and you are therefore complicit in and responsible for all the harms caused by capitalism through history!!!” You'd start identifying the most militant advocates of capitalism – say, ancaps – and trying to shut down their events. You'd dogpile people on Twitter for showing off their wealth. And then you expect that by calling-out enough people, and famous enough people, and doing all this belief/behavior change crap over and over, that the belief in commodities will corrode and suddenly we'll wake up in a non-capitalist society. This is literally how idpols handle patriarchy and white supremacy. Now, I've nothing against people trying to live without money, but I don't think that kind of call-out strategy would bring down capitalism. I expect you can see that it's ridiculous. But if it's ridiculous in the case of capitalism, why isn't it ridiculous in the other cases too?


anarchist_critic OP wrote

See, that's loading the terms of the argument again. You believe abuse/rape are effects of a particular culture. You treat the culture in behaviorist terms. This is an empirical claim. I don't believe it is a true empirical claim.

needs and safety of the victim against the will of their own victims upholding their position within a scene that they may have used for the purpose of abuse

Again you're hiding your real claim behind rhetoric. What you seem to be claiming, is that open public anarchist spaces which use an anarchist model of social organisation (e.g. an open free festival, an anarchist bookfair, a free concert, a FNB distro), which do not have any kind of policing of who gets to attend, should not be allowed to exist. The reasons for this are that 1. victims should have a veto on the presence of abusers in spaces, and 2. safety is compromised by not having zero tolerance exclusion policies (because the victim's safety is not prioritised and/or because someone might exploit their position in the space to abuse again). I believe this argument is wrong because 1. is creating a relationship of authority in which the victim has authority over the abuser and has authority over other individuals in terms of how they treat the abuser, and 2. is putting security before the existence of open spaces and also exaggerating the real (as opposed to emotional) danger posed by an abuser in public spaces – as well as positing a “responsibility to prevent” which is part and parcel of neoliberal ideology. It's also unclear whether the danger you're referring to is real (i.e. only applies if a perpetrator is likely to attack a victim) or whether it encompasses emotional distress (it is, of course, distressing to run into someone who's mistreated you or you've had a fight with at events... this isn't by any means limited to gendered abuse), and you don't seem to consider how there might be other ways to mitigate danger (if a person is serially dating within a scene then it's quite possible to warn the people concerned... this is not possible if you drive the “abuser” out and they start over somewhere else). I believe there are very good reasons why public anarchist spaces run on public anarchist models should exist, and that neither the nonexistent authority of “victims” (who you're empowering as the spook “victim”, not as real people), nor the equally nonexistent duty to prevent, can trump these reasons. You're killing anarchism in the zeal of your war on rapists, just as neocons kill anarchism in the zeal of their war on terror.

I'd add, there are certainly occasions in the past where I've supported exclusion of unrepentant rapists. And if your ilk had restrained your claims over time to instances of unrepentant perpetrators of serious abuse (such as rape and battery) who refuse all kinds of education, therapy or compensation (indicating some kind of existential commitment to domination), I would probably support you. But this has got so out of control, I now know the rape issue is just a wedge in the door. You have revealed in previous posts that you do not restrict this to unrepentant rapists, you do not restrict it to rape (it could also apply to a single incident of hitting someone, or to other unspecified “abuse”), you also believe it is fair enough to ban someone because they drew a swastika in an artwork even if there was no far-right ideology involved. You haven't explicitly said whether you also believe that people who break the blockade on a particular person by maintaining contact on both sides should also be banned, but this is pretty common practice in this type of anti-abuse extremism. It's also pretty common that it extends to un-PC speech, unintended “microaggressions”, unwanted touching even if it's completely non-sexual, any kind of violence and sometimes even verbal expressions of anger, etc. The culture created by this regulatory, punitive approach to space is so damaging that it's clearly far greater than whatever small benefit supposedly accrues (and as I've said before – this entire fad for purges and horizontal policing does not seem to have done the slightest to reduce instances of rape and abuse among anarchists).

you just don't know what "stigmatisation" really is

“Really is”

Positivist spotted.

if i'm apparently a psychological behaviourist then why do you seem to think i have such an interest in the unconscious mind over externally measurable behaviour? those things would seem to be diametrically opposed?

When did I say you had an interest in the unconscious mind?

You infer unconscious motives in the sense that you permit claims of the kind “Jon hit Becky because of masculinity, even if Jon didn't believe he was doing it because of masculinity”. You root these kinds of claims in concepts of “culture” (e.g. “rape culture”) and “structure” (e.g. “patriarchy is structural”). You thus imply that individuals can act as vectors for forces of which they are unaware.

You don't seem able or willing to tell me what you take the ontological status or operative mechanisms of these “structures” and “cultures” to be.

From studying leading idpol writers such as Judith Butler, and observing how idpols use these words in practice, I've reached the conclusion that idpols treat structures and cultures as clusters of beliefs and behaviors. The beliefs may be preconscious rather than conscious (they are not unconscious in the psychoanalytic sense), for instance threat-perceptions. The behaviors may be habits which are not directly intended. The idpol methodology attempts to apply incentives, deterrents, disruptions, and variations in opportunity-structures so as to coerce or nudge changes in beliefs and behaviors. It is implicitly assumed that such coercion/nudging will change the “culture” and “structure” and thus eliminate the social problem.

This is an absolutely mainstream cognitive-behaviorist way of thinking about “culture” and “structure” which was invented by the Third Way in the 1990s/early 2000s. It is premised on the elimination of the Freudian view of unconscious motives, the Marxian view of material structures, and the Nietzschean view of social control, which were the normal ways of thinking about “culture” and “structure” in radical movements and in academia up to the 1990s. You're using the post-purge behaviorist model of culture and structure which appears to be an unconscious belief in your case. And you can't see its contentiousness and historicity. Nobody thought about either “culture” or “structure” in those terms before the 1990s. You don't realise – and don't want to admit when I call you out on it – that the terms in which you're framing issues are absolutely mainstream. That you're complicit in the erasure of the entire radical heritage underpinning social movements from the 60s to the 90s – including feminist, gay, black, and anti-colonial movements.

And actually, it doesn't explain anything. Because you're effectively saying “men commit rape because they can get away with it”. But, men can also get away with walking through Alaska butt-naked except for a thong, or sitting on their garage roof playing the trombone. It doesn't mean they do it.


anarchist_critic OP wrote

There's another reason for the no-exclusion thing in my analysis. In general, an anarchist world is a world in which one logic (Deleuze's rhizome, Kropotkin's social principle, Negri's constituent power) has primacy over another logic (Deleuze's arborescence, Kropotkin's political principle, Negri's constituted power). These two types of power are not absolutes. They can exist in absolute forms, but they usually appear in hybrid combinations. Social formations can have more or less of the good (anarchist) principle and the bad (hierarchical) principle. In general, in a society where the principles are mixed, increasing things like freedom, rights, autonomy, affinity, (unconditional) mutual aid, increases the quantity of the anarchist principle. Increasing things like securitisation, censorship, social control, normativity, zero tolerance, conditionality and exclusion, punishment, increases the quantity of the hierarchical principle. Stirnerian theory stricto sensu does not allow for rights (because they have to be rights of a category, a spook) and encourages affiliation based solely on resonance and affinity. And so, you could make an argument that this excuse you use - “I'm not punishing, I'm just refusing to associate with people I don't resonate with” - in Stirnerian terms. But I don't think Stirner deals with the hybrid situations at all. I believe in general we have a better social world – better, in particular, for the worst-off and most marginalised – the more the social world is governed by the social principle not the political principle. An anarchist group should be governed entirely by the social principle, and anarchist interventions in/against the “wider” society should increase the percentage of the social over the political principle. Generally (although not always), rights and unconditional services and open (rather than “safe”) spaces are to the benefit of the social principle. Hence my ranking of social systems: egoism > communism > social democracy > liberalism > communitarianism/behaviorism/totalitarianism. Relative balance of social and political principle. Liberal rights give a bit of wiggle room for Unique Ones to at least gather, associate freely, speak and publish. It's (say) 95% political principle but at least we have that 5% leeway. A welfare state makes it easier to also drop out of work and have access to healthcare and so on. Now maybe we're at 90% political, 10% social. Workers' control takes this further because now you can work together as a union of egoists. Maybe now we're at 50/50. Egoism (or bolo'bolo) is the highest form because the political principle is completely eclipsed. 90 or 99 or 100% social principle.

Idpol does the opposite of this. Firstly it imports the political principle into anarchist spaces through securitisation (“safe spaces”), zero tolerance, strict normativity, formal structures, guilt. Secondly it often pushes in the “wider” society for more political principle and less social principle. Opposing rights as “abstract”, calling for tighter laws and so on. Thirdly it seems to have no sense of the social and political principles. Instead it has a sense of good and bad sides (black vs white, women vs men) and a desire to increase the power of one side at the expense of the other. Even though in reality strengthening the political principle strengthens the privileged group – idpols fight to redirect the political principle (behaviorism, communitarianism, securitisation...) to the benefit of their group. That's why I put it in the bottom group. It doesn't even allow that minimal 5% social principle liberalism allows. It's 100% political principle, about everything, all the time. You're out of step with the latest rules on microaggression? Bam – no bolo, no place in the co-op, no welfare rights, no free speech or civil rights. 0% social principle.

no idea how rape culture works

I know what the theory of rape culture is, I also believe it is false. Can you get your head around the possibility that both of these statements might be true? If not, re-read the stuff above on labelling theory, reactance theory, Stirner, and psychoanalysis which I've so patiently “mansplained” to you.

How did Trump get elected president even though he's a sexual predator? Partly because idpols trolled white men so hard that they backlashed, partly because Trump appealed to authoritarianism which is ingrained in many Americans, partly because Clinton's neoliberalism had nothing to offer to the rustbelt working-class. Partly because half the country thought Hillary Clinton was running a pedo racket (and that was made-up, but she did in fact successfully defend rapists in court using victim-blaming). Partly because some people would vote Republican even if Satan was the candidate, same way they'd support the Steelers even if Satan was the star player. How did Weinstein “happen”? He's a boss at the top of a huge corporate system, of course he can do what he likes; and what he likes, in part, is to do all the things he's not allowed to do (reactance theory). Probably he also enjoys dominating others. And of course the most ruthless, the most sadistic and psychopathic people rise to the top in a hierarchical system because it's dog-eat-dog. That's how authoritarianism works. It doesn't need any bizarre explanations based on invisible “cultures” which are the opposite of what people actually think. More political principle means more domination and abuse, if it isn't rape then it's gulags or slavery or sweatshops or impaling your enemies on stakes.

You seem to believe in behaviorist psychology. You apply categories and strategies based on behaviorist psychology. Actions should have consequences. Creating less acceptance of something makes it less prevalent. From my point of view, behaviorist psychology is pig thinking. It brings the state into yourself and into your movement. Behaviorism is superego, guilt, control. You may not identify as a behaviorist (or a totalitarian, a communitarian, a securitiser...) but there's a structure there. You're reproducing beliefs from a particular structure. You must believe that people can hold unconsciously oppressive beliefs to buy into any of the idpol stuff (toxic masculinity, implicit racism etc). So you can't deny that there might be a structure of behaviorist ideology which you've unconsciously inculcated and which is actually part of social oppression.

I believe that labelling theory, reactance theory, and psychoanalysis prove that behaviorism is bullshit. So, I don't believe that a strategy for fighting X based on behaviorist techniques is effective or justifiable. Doesn't matter if X is rape, theft, terrorism, gang crime, or suicide. Doesn't matter how much I care about rape or terrorism or whatever. The fact that idpol is sacrificing basic anarchist principles to the war on rape only deepens the problem.

and the eye is clearly on the practical effect of our actions on power relations

That's the biggest difference between us. I see anarchist groups as nascent societies in their own right and emphasise prefiguration of a liberated future. An anarchist group should be structured like a stateless society to the maximum extent that it can be. Someone comes in from the “wider” society and leaves this society at the door – whether for an hour, a week, or a lifetime. The wider society is now your enemy, or something you've dropped out of (even if only for an hour). People may well bring in “socialisation” from the “wider” society which makes the process imperfect but this should absolutely not be focused on because it undermines building an alternative society. These problems will disappear when we aren't just a small group meeting for an hour but an entire society. Because it's not OUR group structure that's causing them. Only if they actually start to make the political principle predominate in our micro-society do they need to be seriously challenged. If you can't imagine how this is possible without being able to make a clean break with capitalist society then I'd suggest you read three authors: James Scott, Colin Ward, and Hakim Bey. It's very much possible to have local nodes of statelessness right under the noses of statist societies, even amongst people who are also enmeshed in statist societies to one extent or another. Every historically oppressed group – slaves, peasants – had something like this. The group starts small, stays hidden, but it becomes the basis for insurrection when the opportunity (or necessity) arises. It's a line of flight as Deleuze would say. Something which leads out of hierarchical society, even if it isn't entirely out yet.

On the contrary, you seem to see anarchist groups as part of capitalist society and emphasise how your group impacts on power relations within this society. This means you are reformist and liberal as I'd understand these terms. Focusing on the things brought in from capitalist society, and the impacts a group has on capitalist society, drags people back inside capitalist society and thereby helps to sustain it. Strengthens the spooks. Blocks the lines of flight. I don't see how it can ever lead out of hierarchy. I haven't even seen it being very effective in winning small reforms. If you want reforms then you're better going the Sanders route, or at least toning down your rhetoric.

The fundamental integrating force of autonomous anarchist groups (as of stateless societies) is the strength of active desire, of life-force, joy, affinity. Sartre's “group-in-fusion”. The fundamental integrating force of idpol groups is superego or guilt, and the fear each member has of exclusion by the others. Sartre's “pledged group”. This is a very serious difference in terms of who can be part of the group, and how they relate to one another.


anarchist_critic OP wrote

is the problem that i label people according to behaviours and "unconscious beliefs" that they don't purposefully identify with... or is it that i'm trying to exclude people from specific social settings? it doesn't matter what "ontological basis" i have for labelling people racist if your entire argument is that i have no basis for excluding anybody

I can see why you'd think I was making the argument that you should not label people based stuff they don't identify with, but I never made that argument. It isn't how labelling theory works and it isn't how Stirner works. How labelling theory works is: if you catch someone stealing, and you label them as “a thief”, and you stigmatise and treat them as “a thief” (e.g. jail them, ban them from shops), they are likely to internalise this identity as “a thief” and commit more and worse thefts than they did before. So for example, in the ethnographic record there are societies with high levels of expectations of public speaking performance, and they also have high levels of stammering. This is specific to societies with high expectations of public speaking. Other societies with no expectations of public speaking have little or no stammering. So it's clear that the speaking norm has some kind of relationship (likely causal) to the stammering, rather than prohibiting it as would seem to be the case. This doesn't mean you can never describe someone using a term which they don't identify with. You can still say in a certain sense that someone is “a thief” or more accurately they committed a “theft” or several “thefts”, but you should generally avoid the various mechanisms of stigma and punishment, especially for one-off actions and for actions which are fairly minor on the overall deviance scale. Because if you apply these mechanisms to one-off actions and relatively minor actions, you will increase the level of more serious deviance. This is known as “deviance amplification”. Deviance amplification has been clearly demonstrated in cases of media moral panics – when a particular type of crime or deviance is suddenly framed by the media as a problem. The type of deviance almost always becomes more frequent and conforms more closely to the media construction (which is initially exaggerated or falsified) than it did before. In Cohen's study, the media made a lot out of some low level antagonism in one particular town to make out that there was a massive war going on between Mods and Rockers. Within a few months, there actually was a big, violent feud between Mods and Rockers. Idpol panics resemble media moral panics in many ways.

In Stirner, the point is that everyone is ultimately a Unique One and not reducible to any one of their attributes. One of someone's attributes might be that they have committed a theft, but this is not inherently what they are. Treating someone as one of their attributes is spook-thinking. This means both that racism and sexism are spook-thinking, and that extreme idpol attributions based on masculinity and whiteness are spook-thinking. Defending your property from a thief when they try to take it from you is legitimate in situ enmity, punishing someone as “a thief” in general because they offended against a general norm is spook-thinking.

Reactance theory adds to these that, when someone is prohibited from X (say, theft), their desire to do X is thereby increased (say, to steal), even if they had no prior desire to X (say, to steal). Their desire to X may or may not be overridden by difficulties getting away with X but it pretty much guarantees that at least a portion of them will do X the moment they can get away with it – even if they would have had no desire to do X prior to the prohibition. So if you ban something – unless you also have a totalitarian system of control which ensures that people are permanently incapacitated from X – then you will actually cause more of X to happen. Psychoanalysis adds that people have unconscious motives which are generally invisible both to themselves and others, which vary from one person to the next, are rooted in early childhood development and therefore “sticky” (not easily reconditioned), and which cause actions which seem completely irrational – including self-destructiveness, compulsive actions, etc. Again, this often leads to situations where prohibiting something actually encourages it – for instance, because it comes to stand for repressed desires in general, or for rebellion against authority.

I'm applying this set of theories very directly to the idpol issues of rape, abuse, racism, etc. I believe, on the basis of these theories, that idpol, “rape culture” analysis and their ilk are actually causing greater frequency of rape, abuse, racism, and the other things they are trying to fight. Gamergate is a good example of deviance amplification in action. There was some low level sexism in the gaming community which a few idpols in the media ran amok on and made out to be a massive problem of misogyny among gamers. This led to a backlash and identity shift which led to – in fact – a massive problem of misogyny among gamers.

What's my ontology? Existence is ultimately a constantly changing continuum or flow, where everything is connected (but also differentiable). Each moment in the flow is unique. People are Unique Ones in Stirner's sense. There is no ultimate guarantee of meaning in the outer world, only selections based on particular perspectives. However, these perspectives are not arbitrary and some of them are linked to survival for particular kinds of organisms, or to resonances. The world has no moral structure and there is no transcendental moral dimension which is added to it. There is no such thing as “behavior” because “behavior” is simply the outer observed manifestation of invisible inner forces. Without understanding these inner forces, there is no way to know where the “behavior” comes from and therefore what effect your conscious responses will have on it. Each action is a manifestation of forces at a particular point in the flow of becoming. When in a situation of free becoming, Unique Ones develop an ethos which defines their own sense of subjective meaning and value, and according to which they live their lives. In reality, free becoming is often blocked by outer forces which turn into inner blockages such as superego, guilt, submission, etc. These blockages are sources of many kinds of harm. People necessarily select by criteria and categories although it is important to remember that this is inaccurate with regard to the actual nature of reality. Categories by themselves are harmless and even beneficial in sorting things from the perspective of a Unique One's ethos. Each Unique One has traits or properties which can be sorted in terms of categories. However, when one of these is taken to define the person's essence and to be more fundamental than their uniqueness, it has become a spook. People can classify both themselves and others in terms of spooks. Spooks are always harmful because they subordinate everyone (privileged as well as subordinate) to abstract categories. Values attached to spooks are always values of the spook itself, i.e. of the abstraction which does not really exist, and not values of the Unique One. Hence “black liberation” is never my liberation or your liberation, even if you or I happen to be black, because it is liberation of the category “blackness” which is an abstraction which does not really exist.

This view leads to an instinctive reaction against punishment and exclusion. Firstly because punishment and exclusion are among the blocking forces which prevent free flow of becoming and thus produce reactive blockages. Secondly because punishment always reduces a Unique One to one of its properties (a particular action). Thirdly because punishment focuses on outer observed “behavior” and is ignorant of the real causal process. Fourthly because punishment requires norms, which are based on categories, and which therefore enforce the supremacy of abstractions. I don't think a Stirnerian necessarily rules out exclusion in all circumstances, but there's a strong presumption against it. There's an important ethical difference between excluding someone because they themselves have a spooked identity and impose a spooked identity on you, and excluding someone because you perceive their “behavior” or traits through your own spooks. Hence why I think there's a distinction between banning someone who is an organised Nazi or a cop (i.e. who holds a spook identity as central to their own ethos), and banning someone you accuse of some microaggression or because they've hit someone or drawn a swastika or been accused of abuse (i.e. who you're classifying into a spook category of bad guys based on your own categories).


anarchist_critic OP wrote

like, people can clearly be racist even if they don't personally consider themselves racist?

Moot point since "racist" has become a catch-all slur when it comes from idpols.

But, I can't tell if you're wilfully ignoring my distinction between excluding someone with a spook identity and excluding someone because you categorise them based on a spook, or if you're just too thick to understand it. Hell, I can't even tell what the ontological status of the statement "someone is racist" is for you. If you believe there's an objective structure external to individuals or just a set of unconscious beliefs.

Excluding cops, Nazis, even excluding Leninists or idpols is not the same as excluding someone for an individual statement or a pattern of statements or an instance of hitting someone or some other "behaviour". Excluding someone who's a systematic serial abusers and who believes in an abusive relationship pattern in some sense might be analogous to excluding a cop or a Nazi. Excluding someone because they deviate from some list of permitted "behaviours" (however bad the "behaviour" in question) is not at all analogous. In the former case, you're reacting to THEIR spook. In the latter case, you're IMPOSING a spook by classifying them based on "behaviour".

but i do have to ask what the hell you think you're doing by labelling people "totalitarian" if they don't "self-define" their identity as totalitarian

I'm not talking about banning you from anything for being totalitarian, that's the difference. You've every right to be totalitarian in your own little totalitarian world with your fellow totalitarians, to live your whole life in idpol-bolo if you so wish, and you've still got the same rights as everyone else to come to public events, to eat, have a home, not be tortured or jailed etc. What you and your ilk do not have a right to do, is take over anarchist spaces, reclassify your totalitarian dogmas as "anarchism", drive out real anarchists for opposing your ideology, disrupt anarchist events to impose your ideology (example: London bookfair last year; CrimethInc convergence), or generally create the social infrastructure to impose your ideology on the rest of us, and deny us anything that isn't idpol-bolo or idpol-state.

a white male abuser is most often a very socially permissable thing to be that's not going to change unless steps are taken to make it less excusable

I don't know what kind of parallel world you live in, but this is both doublethink and copthink. Doublethink because the overwhelming majority condemn all the more serious kinds of abuse and some people get huge jail sentences, pedos can even be detained indefinitely under civil commitment orders. People get away with it by lying and bribing and hiding their actions, that's the same if you're an anarchist who smashes windows or a bank robber or a drug trafficker or anything else that isn't "socially permissible". Are you prepared to argue that undocumented migration is socially permissible because most of the time it isn't prevented? And abuse is certainly not considered permissible in anarchist groups which is the relevant community of comparison here, everyone is profeminist on paper. If there's enabling structures then it's the fact that people live in nuclear family households so that abuse is invisible to people outside the household.

It's copthink because this entire line of thought "X happens because it's socially permissible, we need to signal that X is not socially permissible by cracking down on X" is premised on cop psychological theory and cop sociological theory. There is no evidence that making something less socially permissible makes it less frequent. Sometimes it makes it more frequent, or more severe (e.g. Prohibition, drug laws). And also, there are very many reasons a "behaviour" might become less frequent other than its becoming "less excusable". Nobody banned disco music. Nobody banned horse-drawn caravans. Trying to bludgeon people down with punishment or ostracism until they change their ways (if it's even in their power to change their ways - again, we need more Freud and less Skinner) is only one way of responding to a social problem. The real question is why some people have the desire to abuse others, and how that desire can be shifted. If the person's psychologically unstable then maybe they need a better support network. Maybe we need better, anarchist therapies. If they're displacing frustration-aggression from their own subordinate position then maybe they need occasions and outlets to take it out on the real targets. If they've internalised a spook that this is how men act and they'll be abused themselves if they don't act this way, then this spook needs to be shaken up. They need to be shown that they can be free from abuse without abusing others, or that they don't have to conform to standards of masculinity in movement spaces, or that it's OK to feel shame or fear or whatever. At which point, you've taken away the cause, and therefore the effect (the abuse). You're not prepared to consider any of this because you're determined that you already know the reasons (they're vectors for something called "masculinity" which is somehow more important than their actual motives because muh statistics) and you have the answers and the survivor must have their pound of flesh. Typical short-sighted anti-psychoanalytic American Protestant Salem-witch-trial piggery.


anarchist_critic OP wrote

i'm probably not gonna respond again anyhow

Good, because you're pissing me off.

personal boundaries

Pop psychology. Freud or GTFO.

nothing is happening that is alienable from the personal interests of these people

Ostracising someone as a Nazi because they draw cops with swastikas on their shields in an anti-police artwork is not about "not associating with racists" and it's not about "personal interests" of the person who is ostracising. It's about enforcing a spook.

a small political community, affinity group, or scene is not a public or social service

Anarchism is prefigurative, an anarchist community must be structured as an anarchist society will be structured. A small affinity group is not a public or social service but a social centre, festival, gig, bookfair, etc is. Saying "you're an anarchist but you can't come to the one anarchist social centre in town" is very similar to saying "you can't shop at the one store in town".

accountability normally deals with intra-community violence, most often cases in which well-established figures have taken advantage of their position within a community to perperate or legitimise their abuse

99 times out of 100 it doesn't deal with violence or abuse, it deals with low-level shit which would have been handled sufficiently by telling the person to fuck off. There's also this mission creep going on where "the community" is meant to be accountable for offstage actions which happen in private spaces where "the community" cannot see or intervene (i.e. OUTSIDE its spaces). Or even for things which happened BEFORE a person joined a community - such as someone's gender role socialisation making them less prepared to speak at meetings. In an anarchist society there would be no gender-role socialisation, but the person was gender-role socialised long before they became an anarchist, how the fuck can the community be responsible for rectifying this?!

why it's important to consider your own role in accommodating these people

I refuse to accept the totalitarian doublethink which makes me responsible for someone else's actions because I haven't taken the politically correct zero tolerance response towards them. I refuse to sacrifice basic anarchist principles to the higher goal of "not accommodating" bad people. Does the fact that I'm not burning down a copshop right now mean that I'm "accommodating" the police?

a man who once beat his female partner isn't just personally a bad egg, his actions in this case are part of a wider system of patriarchal violence even if he never does it again

Typical one-sided spook thinking. Guess what? Blaming a person for losing self-control during a psychological crisis is also part of a wider system of ableist and psychophobic violence against people (men, women, genderqueer) who don't always have self-control. Accountability processes based on an assumption of self-control reproduce structural violence against people who have psychological crises. Banning people based on behavioural criteria is also a widespread social pattern under the New Right which demonstrably has racist, ableist and classist effects (e.g. broken windows policing) and which has a long history of war against "violent savages who commit mindless violence", including colonisation justified as protecting non-white women from non-white men. Those savages are practising sati and human sacrifice and genital mutilation, we can't stand by and tolerate this, quick, bring out the gunships and call in Custer! By bringing this kind of behavioural regulation into anarchist spaces, you're importing an entire legacy of colonialism, genocide, white supremacy...

See, it's all so much more blurred and "intersectional" than you realise.

You think you know why someone did it (abuse, violence, whatever) even though you have no idea of their actual motives or what the real situation was, because you're projecting your spook ("there's an observable structure which I can deduce from muh statistics and muh 40-year-old Marxist-inspired theories") and then treating the person in line with the spook without

Yes there's an observable pattern but you have absolutely no idea whether it's relevant in this or that individual case. Suppose male-on-female violence is eight times more common than female-on-male - this means that there's a one in eight chance that patriarchy has nothing to do with it. Acting like you can read off motives from statistical patterns is essentialism and spook-thinking. And since you have no idea what made the person do it, for all you know your zero tolerance bullshit may be causing MORE abuse and violence. You just don't know, but you have the typical zeal of a religious believer and are unable to see or care that you don't know - and THIS is what is totalitarian and dangerous about your ideology.

it still might leave an effect on his partner who would still be justified in seeking restorative or reparative justice

Straight bourgeois ideology. The fact that there's an effect does not mean there's a right to "justice", nobody seeks retaliation for natural disasters for example. Even in the unlikely event that you don't put it down to scientific fact and blame the gods, most likely you will appease the gods and not seek revenge on them.

I have no idea what the ontological basis is, for your belief that survivors/victims have some non-situation-specific right to something simply because they suffered harm, but given that you're raised in a pig society where pig justice is the norm, it's a good guess that this is just pig thinking you've never unlearned.

we clearly haven't been talking about any stateless society, historical or theoretical -- we're talking about radical communities within contemporary capitalist society, which is a society that typically affords rapists a far greater number of legal and social resources than their victims

Again our disagreement is on basic social ontology. To me, radical communities are not WITHIN the dominant society. They are tendentially OUTSIDE the dominant society. They therefore PREFIGURE what an entire non-state society will be. One can tell the character of the society they prefigure from their current practices. What the "wider society" (i.e. the enemy society) does or doesn't "afford" people is absolutely irrelevant. Leninism claims to be building a free and equal society but in fact it prefigures a bureaucratic dictatorship. We know this because Leninist parties in fact function as bureaucratic dictatorships. Idpol prefigures a hell-hole of witch-hunts, persecution and denial of basic necessities of life because of deviance from groupthink. We know this because this is how it in fact works. Real (non-idpol) anarchism prefigures bolo'bolo. We know this because it works like bolo'bolo, to the maximum extent that it can given its constant struggle against capitalist/statist society.


anarchist_critic wrote

No, Palmares was no utopia. It was no communist society in which the decisions where as horizontal as possible and in which all were seen as equal. Palmares had chiefs, one for each village. The chief of the capital, Macacos, was the king of Palmares. But this is neither here nor now. The now is the quilombo as opposed to the senzala.

As long as the boss is black, it's "neither here nor [there]" whether there's a boss?!

How can these idiots call themselves anarchists?!


anarchist_critic OP wrote

Yes it's punitive, it's just this new Third Way fad of dressing up punishment as "risk management" and "security". Exactly the same as screws when they throw someone in solitary. "Oh, they're a security risk". Sorry, no. Risk management is the new punitivity, it's dividing people into the risky and the vulnerable (when most people are both), it's ressentiment and it needs to stop. Also, there's no evidence that zero tolerance stops abuse, in fact, it probably causes abuse not only through deviance amplification but also because abusers can use their power to exclude/punish to blackmail victims into silence. And as I've already explained to your stupid face a thousand times, you are not CAUSING abuse by failing to prevent it (i.e. by not using zero tolerance). You have some fucked-up idea that "abuse" is a product of "the space" which is under your control and responsibility and this hugely exaggerates the power people can have over other people's actions and interactions, it's taking on responsibility not only for your own "behaviour" (which is bad enough) but for everything that happens in "the space" or in your social network and this means overburdening yourself with guilt for things that are other people's fault or nobody's fault, and that you don't control.

used this space as a cover for your abuse

Again you're using this tired old chestnut that if X commits abuse once, then X is an "abuser" and everything X does is nothing more than a "cover" for their ESSENCE as an abuser... have you considered that a person might do something abusive and yet have other aspects to their life or personality? No you haven't, because it's a lot easier to have straw-man enemies.

Someone loses their temper with their partner once or twice, hugs strangers when they're on E's, or punches someone during a psychotic breakdown, a girl with BPD threatens her partner because she's tricked herself into thinking he's leaving her, a couple of drunk people get in a fight - this does not mean they are nothing more than a predator who is exploiting anarchist spaces to victimise people.

I honestly have nothing against proportionate in situ tit-for-tat, if someone gropes someone then punch them in the face or kick them in the balls, if someone uses the N-word then call them a racist cunt in return, but this communitarian social control claptrap and zero tolerance needs to stop, it's destroying anarchist spaces and it's the exact opposite of real anarchism.

since when has the demand to associate with certain people in certain spaces been an inalienable human right anyway???

If X is open to the public then X should not exclude individual members of the public, e.g. if X says "no blacks" then it's being racist, if a landlord refuses to rent to anarchists then anarchists will see them as an enemy. Welfare state services have always worked on the basis that everyone has a right to use them. If there's socialist healthcare, everyone has a right to healthcare, even if someone's in prison, even if they're abusive in hospital (worst case: sedation is used). If someone's expelled from school then they have a right to be found a place at another school or given special tuition. If someone doesn't have a private house they have a right to a council house, if they fight with their neighbours then they or the neighbours can be moved elsewhere but they can't be denied a house. This is how social-democracy worked up to the 1980s, after which the New Right and the Third Way started bringing in punitive behaviourist crap. Private agencies often wriggle out of universal rights, which is why they're more regressive, but still, in a traditional bazaar there's no way to know who you're trading with or what they'll use what they buy for, that's precisely the appeal for right-libertarians. Also there's globally recognised human rights to food, housing, education, cultural expression, etc (see UN HR declaration), and if every private provider refuses to transact with someone then they're denied these rights. If the roads are privately owned and the owner refuses to let someone use them then that person can't have free movement (standard ancom criticism of ancap) - this aspect of liberal rights is very much forgotten in discussions of sites like Twitter and Facebook. Also there's been cases in Britain of people banned from every shop in their town, because they were caught shoplifting somewhere. What happens to their right to eat? I guess they could grow their own if they have a plot, but our land was stolen in the eighteenth century. Make no mistake: denial of de facto rights through exclusion kills.

But the real point is: I'm a Stirnerian egoist, so if you refuse me the right to use your "public" service (and anything that's open to the public is a de facto public service), you've declared me an un-human and you are therefore my enemy and I have a right to wage social war against you. You treat me as your enemy because I've drawn some cartoon cops with swastikas on their shields and this violates your universal law against drawing swastikas, well OK, you're my enemy. Because there is no community. There is no such thing as enforcement of community norms. Rule enforcement is always in fact an act of enmity, of war between two egoists. There are unions of egoists, there are unconnected singularities, and there are enemies. By sticking your "abuser" or "racist" label on me for just being an egoist, and denying me rights or connections you'd otherwise accord me without this spook, you're making an enemy. Don't imagine you can make enemies without war.

(The situation with cops or organised fascists is different because they're discrete groups with self-defining identities. Whereas people labelled as "racist" or "abuser" are just individuals who are being labelled as identities based on a trait).

Personal relations are different because there's a question of degrees or affinity or resonance. If there's no resonance then there won't be a relation to begin with (which is different to open spaces and public services). But yes, if someone cuts me out of their life without a very good reason (we've had a huge fight, they've changed their politics, they're going to the woods to become a hermit...) then I consider them at least partially an enemy, and I expect the same in return if I cut someone out without a good reason. Relations are not to be made or broken lightly, people can become reliant on others emotionally or practically and the broken relation can be devastating. Have you ever even read an anthropology text on how stateless societies work? People need strong social relations in lieu of the state and market relations they don't have. They literally rely on one another to survive. Idpols constantly ostracise people for little or no reason, often to coerce them into adhering to idpol orthodoxy (I've had this done to me a lot, just for disagreeing with people) and I consider this a form of emotional abuse. When a partner does this to another partner (i.e. withdraws love/affection/sex to pressure them into doing what the first partner wants) it's considered emotional abuse.

There's a hierarchy of better/worse systems from my point of view. Authoritarian social control systems, totalitarianism, communitarianism, crude enforcement of membership or not of some social "club" as a condition of any rights or wellbeing, is the lowest, worst form of society. Absolute dominance of the outgroup by the ingroup. Liberalism and right-libertarianism are higher because they have a few abstract rights. These rights can't be taken away from the outgroup. Social-democracy is higher still because it gives stronger, more concrete rights. This makes things even better for the outgroup. Communism with workers' control is higher than social-democracy, and egoist anarchism is higher than communism. Each time the relationship between ingroup and outgroup becomes more equal, power is more dispersed. Idpol fucks things up by deciding the ingroup and outgroup are always particular groups (say, men and women, black and white, "abuser" and "survivor") and thus degenerate all the way back to the lowest stage. Absolute power to the ingroup, no power to the outgroup. The lowest form of society.