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View Diary: We Are a Vision of the Future, On the Black Bloc: Part I (343 comments)

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  •  In 1999 you didn't know the issue or the players (0+ / 0-)

    but you liked the idea of fucking shit up.  So you go out and find a reason to keep getting that feeling of fucking shit up.  Doesn't matter what the issue is.  I wonder if black bloc get the same sexual thrill that some arsonists get setting fire to something.  

    Rick Perry is George Bush without brains.

    by thestructureguy on Fri May 04, 2012 at 07:47:41 AM PDT

    •  Yeah, and? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joe wobblie

      Name another political philosophy that admits people like to feel like they have power.

    •  The rhetorical flavor of this comment (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      is unpleasant.  I doubt there's a player on the progressive board who, at one time or another, has not felt so voiceless and disfranchised that she or he has cheered those who have fucked shit up, or even felt the urge to fuck shit up themselves. Whether the thrill was "sexual" or not is not under question -- that's a strangely freudian read.  Would you slam blacks who rioted after the Martin Luther King, Jr. assassination or after the Rodney King verdict, with the same vigor? I was in San Francisco when the Castro went mad with rage after the Milk assassination and after the news went out that we'd started bombing Iraq.  Folks turned over police cars and burned them.  I didn't join in, but I sure as hell understood why they were doing it.

      One of the things I found interesting about anarchist punks in L.A. back in the 1980s was how notably non-sexual a lot of the anger was.  In fact, more of it was deeply political than anyone outside the movement knew.  Sure, there was a ton of misogyny, but (unlike in other misogynistic circles) there was also a very significant feminist and out queer contribution. As a young, disaffected, politically furious radical feminist, I didn't have any trouble finding a place there.

      To subject the political anger of a disaffected subculture to the kind of William Styronish Confessions of Nate Turner revision of motives in which you engaged is disrespectful, and also destructive.  Instead of listening and attempting to engage in good faith, what I see is you hurling hurtful and inept pseudo-psychoanalysis.  This kind of crass judgmentalism is what drove a lot of kids into the punk movement and made anarchism attractive to them.

      Yeah, I had an authority problem.  But it was because authority either had its foot in my ass (via a repressive school system that forced me to take sewing classes when I wanted to take auto shop, and that told me girls were stupid), or its foot in other people's asses (the Kent State shootings made a huge impression on me, as did the war the L.A. police were conducting against the Black Panthers). My sense of betrayal by all those Democrats -- including my father -- who used to be socialists in the 1960s but were somehow okay with voting for Reagan in 1980 -- finally left me with nowhere to turn politically. I'd voted for Carter, but I was so angry at Reagan Democrats I'd never fully trust the party again. (And I still don't, though I still vote Democrat and contribute money to Democratic politicians.)

      I like militance.  And there's nothing anti-Democratic about that. I'm pretty sure that nobody would have "given" rights to any minority or any woman in American without that pesky militant wing to the movement. Same for labor rights. Whether we like it or not, these days the anarchists are the folks who are willing to go out there and be militant. If we want them to act in ways that conform to our agenda, we have to convince them that that they should share our agenda.  We need to make them part of our community instead of talking all the time about how bad "they make" us look. And we need to be able to talk about their community respectfully as well -- as if they were people for whom anarchism was a conclusion, and not just stupid jerks who don't know what's good for them and who ruin our party. If you want to pretend that they're just criminals like arsonists, instead of drawing on a political tradition and an ideology with a great deal of appeal for truly motivated political actors, that's your choice.  It doesn't happen to be mine.

      "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

      by hepshiba on Fri May 04, 2012 at 01:31:42 PM PDT

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