What's new with LBC - Summer 2018

  • Posted on: 30 July 2018
  • By: aragorn

From Little Black Cart

Welcome to the quarterly newsletter of Little Black Cart. We distribute anarchist anti-political books, pamphlets, and newspapers. This quarter we have a few new small books (including a classic reprint) and a large memorial collection from our friend and comrade Paul Z Simons.

We also are growing our selection of ephemera with a new T-Shirt, a new Black Seed, and some shifting plans about how we do what we do. We want to inflict anarchy upon the world and want to apply energy toward these aims, with you, and to ignore the dumb shit and the haters.

New Titles

A Full and Fighting Heart

Paul Simons was one of our favorite people. This memorial to Paul Z Simons begins with four remembrances, ours; a piece by his eldest daughter, Nina; one by his partner at the time of his death, Lili, and finally a political genealogy by Jason McQuinn, long-term partner and publisher with Paul, through CAL Press.

This selection of texts by Paul is nowhere near comprehensive. It includes all his major work after Black Eye including writing in Anarchy: A journal of desire armed, Modern Slavery, his writing as El Errante and his various essays critical and triumphant.

Most of the texts in this collection are also available at the URL https://theanarchistlibrary.org/category/author/paul-z-simons. We miss Paul now and always, authentic bridges are few and far, and his enthusiasm (with its obligatory opposite, deep sadness) and commitment to ideas and people and learning, are far too rare

For more information - A Full and Fighting Heart: Writings by Paul Z Simons


The Manifesto of the Happily Unemployed

A booklet by Guillaume Paoli (and a group of unnamed others), who also wrote Demotivational Training, and who has been thinking and writing about work for decades, in France, London, and Germany.

This manifesto has been around in German for years, and made a big splash among people, which got even bigger when it was falsely reported as being "a movement of 150,000 members." Paoli is charming, and charmingly modest, and this is, like Demotivational, a worthy addition to the books that challenge the primacy of work-to-survive/work-to-thrive, a challenge that only get sharper in these days of much conversation and experimentation with UBI.

For more information - The Manifesto of the Happily Unemployed


The Right to be Greedy

This book was originally written in 1974 by For Ourselves, a Bay Area post-situationist group at the time. From Bob Black's preface from the Loompanics edition...

Egoism in its narrowest sense is a tautology, not a tactic. Adolescents of all ages who triumphantly trumpet that "everyone is selfish," as if they’d made a factual discovery about the world, only show that they literally don’t know what they’re talking about. Practical egoism must be something more, it must tell the egoist something useful about himself and other selves which will make a difference in his life (and, as it happens, theirs). My want, needs, desires, whims – call them what you will – extend the ego, which is my-self purposively acting, out where the other selves await me. If I deal with them, as the economists say, "at arm’s length," I can’t get as close as I need to for so much of what I want. At any rate, no "spook," no ideology is going to get in my way. Do you have ideas, or do ideas have you?

For more information - The Right to be Greedy


Black Seed #6

One of the reasons we do what we do is to have the capacity to fund projects that we want to see happen and wouldn't be possible other wise. Black Seed is a Green Anarchist publication. This is the second issue under the new, second collective group. This issue we are attempting to argue more for the kind of anarchism we'd like to see and do less of the back-and-forth bickering that has been filling too much of anarchyland since the Internet.

Fuck the Internet even though it's the main way we find you (and you find us).

For more information - Black Seed #6 (single issue)

Black Seed #6 (bundle)


Recent LBC Titles & Distro Items

Stirner

From the translator's introduction:

I made this translation for those who rebel against all that is held sacred, against every society, every collectivity, every ideology, every abstraction that various authorities, institutions, or even other individuals try to impose on them as a "higher power," for those who know how to loot from a book like this, to take from it those conceptual tools and weapons that they can use in their own defiant, laughing, mocking self-creation, to rise up above and against the impositions of the mass. In other words I did this translation for those who know how to treat a book not as a sacred text to either be followed or hermeneutically dissected, but as an armory or a toolbox from which to take whatever will aid them in creating their lives, their enjoyments

This new version of Wolfi's translation includes an index and a gorgeous cover that refutes expectations.

The Unique and Its Property


  1. Corrosive Consciousness - A blistering attack against the ideology of Anarcho-Primitivism
  2. Relations Without End - Animism
  3. In Search of the Masterless Men of Newfoundland - Is escaping civilization possible?
  4. BASTARD Chronicles 2017 - Evil. Pro or Con?
  5. /Atassa #2 - The controversy continues. To what end?
  6. Brethren of the Coast - Pirates of Somalia
  7. Last Act of the Circus Animals - Sean Swain, Travis Washington, Anarchist Animal Farm
  8. Toward an Army of Ghosts

    - The second volume by Tom Nom@d on insurgent strategy
  9. Anarchist Speculations - The writings of John Moore

New LBC Shirt

Introducing the new LBC t-shirt. Enjoy!



More information? New LBC T-Shirt

The rest

Want to help?

Are you in the Bay Area and would you like to help make LBC projects happen?
Drop us a line.

Are you a writer?

Send manuscript proposals to us at info@lbc

Become an Intern

In a program that we're really happy with, LBC hosts a new intern every three months. If you are interested in becoming a close friend with LBC and being exposed to the ideas and personalities around the project and our environs, if you've been wanting time and encouragement to work on or start that awesome anarchist project you've had in mind, feel free to reach out to us at our email address for more information. We are currently looking for interns for the whole of 2019!!!

Social Networking

Here is our dumb Twitter feed

Stupid Facebook

Politics is the enemy of anarchy, and it knows it.

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Comments

What are the key differences between Black Seed's perspectives and that of primitivists? I thought green anarchy was basically primitivist but clearly I am not correct in my assumption. What is the underpinning of Black Seed's green anarchy?

If I were to characterize the terminology here... Green Anarchism is the largest category. It is the big circle that includes the other terms here. It is not tightly definable IMO. -A- split in GA is around the question of civilization (pro or con). Another split is about the question of whether there was a singular origin (ie gatherer-hunter) that we should return to or if it's possible. These are questions that Black Seed concerns itself with rather than the answers that some feel satisfied as being solved.

"Green Anarchy," like 'anti-civ,' is just an umbrella term for various divergent but loosely related theoretical tendencies that are critical of civilization. Primitivists want to effect a 'return' to an idealized past that may or may not have ever existed, which is something that not all anti-civ/green anarchy folks would agree with. Another point of disagreement (related to the first) is over the extent to which anthropology - and, by extention, the 'scientific' worldview in general - should play a role in the critique of civilization. This second point is related to what I see as the most glaring irony of anarcho-primitivism: for all their puffery about wanting to do away with civilizaton, APs still cling to civilization's own narrow brand of scientific "rationality" with the pious devotion of the most fervent religious zealots. In a world where making every aspect of daily life 'rational,' predictable, and quantifiable is a tool used by technocrats to keep people in line, the fact that anarcho-primitivism would implicitly embrace this same logic is nothing short of laughable.

Huh? That doesn't even make any sense. Scientific rationality is the exact opposite of religious zealotry.

Troll harder...

You're right, it *is* the exact opposite; or, to be more precise, it's the opposite side of the same coin. It ultimately makes no difference whether you're worshiping 'God' or 'Progress' as the source of your salvation. In either case, the adamance of one's faith in an alienated ideal is what makes it 'religious' in nature - regardless of whether that ideal is of a purportedly 'natural' or 'supernatural' origin.

It seems extreme to claim that primitivists exhibit some form of religious zealotry because they use data from the field of anthropology.

If you'll read my comment a little more closely, you'll notice that I said that primitivist and non-primitivist anti-civ folks tend to disagree over "*the extent to which*... anthropology should play a role in a critique of civilization." The problem isn't with the fact that primitivists make use of anthropological data *at all,* but with the fact that their *overreliance* on a 'scientific' discourse means that they inadvertently fall into a problematic degree of logical positivism/essentialism that winds up reproducing the logic of civilization itself - despite their best efforts to critique it in other regards.

What's the proper dosage and brand of anthropology that you prescribe?

However much it takes to *learn* from hunter-gatherers without deluding yourself into believing that you can turn back the clock and 'return' to some fictionalized lost paradise while claiming that you have the full weight of 'science' to support your delusion.

So some quantifiable amount of anthropological data equates to an "over-reliance" on anthropology and once that line is crossed, it transforms into "a problematic degree of a logical positivism"? And logical positivism reproduces "the logic of civilization itself". Quite the slippery slope!

How do you connect anthropology to logical positivism? Is logical positivism inherent to anthropology or vice versa? You'll really have to build that case somehow rather than just stating it is. That case will probably be based on data somehow and when you do that you'll open yourself up to the same accusation that your over-reliance on data is somehow a problematic degree of logical positivism.

I'm not seeing how an over-reliance on anthroplogical data (or any data) can somehow cross a threshold to logical positivism if there wasn't a direct link already there. And in that case, it's the field of anthropology that equates to logical positivism to begin with, not the amount of, or even quality of, data. I think you've got an enormous uphill battle where many logical positivists and anthropologists would disagree with what you're putting forth here.

Also, how is logical positivism "the logic of civilization itself"? Logical positivism is a relatively new development in the history of civilization. Are you saying the first civilized populations were logical posivists? That seems to be putting the cart before the horse, as the saying goes, but if you have the data on that, please present it. Seriously, I'm interested!

"How would you connect anthropology to logical positivism?"

Personally, I *wouldn't* connect them but, judging by Zerzan's unending crusade to rescue 'meaning' and 'truth' from what he perceives as the all-consuming vortex of 'Postmodern' relativism, he clearly feels differently. In my estimation, this has less to do with an inhent connection between anthropology and logical positivism than it does with the fact that Zerzan is more interested in marketing an ideological 'brand' than he is in dissecting the epistemic precepts of civilization *in the present age.* In much the same vein as Marx had dialectical materialism to provide his ideology with the thin veneer of 'scientific' legitimacy, Zerzan has anthropology to do likewise. What I suspect he would be less inclined to acknowledge is that the concept of "critical cultural relativism" has been central to contemporary anthropology since the early 20th century. The fact that Zerzan still clings to outmoded conceptions of 'meaning' and 'truth' that are even contested from *within* his "Pet Science" is testament to just *how much* on the wrong side of history he actually is.

"Also, how is logical positivism 'the logic of civilization itself'? Logical positivism is a relatively new development in the history of civilization."

The desire to trace human origins back to a singular 'Cause' has been a defining feature of both religious and scientific worldviews for ages. The fact that this pursuit has, in relatively recent times, been 'secularized' by the scientific bureaucracy does not negate its origins in both Christian and pre-Christian religion. Stirner alluded to this transition when he spoke of the inversion of Hegel carried out by Feuerbach whereby "the Spirit of Man" came to supplant "the Spirit of God" as the dominant universal supreme ideal. The only thing separating the apostles of the scientific ideology of 'Progress' from those pre-civilized people who looked up at the sun and saw a God to be worshiped as a giver of life, warmth, and sustenance is their preferred object of worship and the sophistication of the tools used to justify the blindness of their piety.

22:55. Wow....you're putting dialectical materialism on the same level of validity as anthropology? One is a theory only within Marxism, the other is a whole field of inquiry within social science, and which encompasses other disciplines. You realize Zerzan isn't against cultural relativism, right? He is simply against the postmodern stance that cultural relativism is what explains facts, and not facts explaining cultural relativism. And what exactly is "outmoded" about truth and meaning?

"The desire to trace human origins back to a singular 'Cause' has been a defining feature of both religious and scientific worldviews for ages."

Is this supposed to be something pithy? This doesn't mean that science and religion are two sides of the same coin. Science uses evidence to explain origins, whereas religion doesn't really care about evidence. And postmodernism isn't even interested in origins at all.

"The only thing separating the apostles of the scientific ideology of 'Progress' from those pre-civilized people who looked up at the sun and saw a God to be worshiped..."

Wait, which pre-civilized people worshiped the sun?

Many hunter-gatherer societies worshipped the sun, the moon and natural phenomena as origins of their existent reality. Science or religion are merely the different coherent reference points from which a lexicon of semantic translations could be given a mythical symbolism to life and from which a commonality of its members could aspire to and give purpose to their innate desires. So they both share the need for explanation and meaning in life.

9:00. "Many hunter-gatherer societies worshipped the sun, the moon and natural phenomena as origins of their existent reality."

Nope. You just made that up.

Everyone worships the sun whether they acknowledge it or not. why do most of them wake up to the rising sun everymorning.

Waking up at dawn is 'worshiping the sun'? WTF?

Thanks for the lulz

"Wow... you're putting dialectical materialism on the same level of validity as anthropology?"

No, not the entire discipline, just Zerzan's ideologically-infused bastardization of it.

"You realize that Zerzan isn't against cultural relativism, right? He is simply against the postmodern stance that cultural relativism isn't what explains facts, and not facts explaining cultural relativism."

The fact is that what count as 'facts' within a given cultural context are not objective and immutable but are, as Foucault factually argued, inextricably bound up with relationships of power and vested interests. Zerzan's own vested interest in preserving the sanctity of his ideology is no exception. If he isn't prepared to accept this fact, then he isn't interested in facts.

"And what exactly is 'outmoded' about truth and meaning?"

I never *said* that truth and meaning are outmoded, I said that Zerzan's *conceptions* of truth and meaning are outmoded. You sure do love your straw men, don't you?

"Is this supposed to be something pithy?"

It isn't *supposed* to be something pithy, it *is* something pithy. If it wasn't something pithy, you wouldn't have needed to ask the question. So pith off, you thupid tho-and-tho! :P

"Science makes use of evidence to explain origins, whereas religion doesn't really care about evidence."

Evidence filtered through the prism of ideology is still ideology. Marx had 'evidence' for why the ultimate triumph of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie was a 'scientific' inevitability - and we all know how *that* worked out.

"Wait, which pre-civilized people worshiped the sun?"

Why does it matter?

11:18. "No, not the entire discipline, just Zerzan's ideologically-infused bastardization of it."

And what "ideologically infused bastardization of it" would that be? Talk about straw man.

"The fact is that what count as 'facts' within a given cultural context are not objective and immutable but are, as Foucault factually argued, inextricably bound up with relationships of power and vested interests."

Completely false. The basic laws of physics, for example, are facts that are not bound up with relationships of power and vested interests. There is a lot of knowledge that is bound up with such interests, but that doesn't mean absolutely everything is. Besides, your stating of of what you believe is a 'fact' about the world of knowledge and power itself contradicts your own assertion. You lack the same self-awareness Foucault did.

"I never *said* that truth and meaning are outmoded, I said that Zerzan's *conceptions* of truth and meaning are outmoded. You sure do love your straw men, don't you?"

Here's what you said:
"The fact that Zerzan still clings to outmoded conceptions of 'meaning' and 'truth'"

You aren't explicitly attributing the 'outmoded conceptions' to Zerzan here, (i.e.are truth and meaning themselves outmoded conceptions, and Zerzan is clinging to them? Or is Zerzan clinging only to the outmoded conceptions of them?). I suppose it could be read the latter way. But your wording is at least a little ambiguous.

So which 'outmoded conceptions of truth and meaning' are you attributing to Zerzan then? And how do you know he is?

"Evidence filtered through the prism of ideology is still ideology."

Just curious...Which ideology is filtering the fact that say, mixing bleach and ammonia produces a gas toxic to humans? Or that eating certain mushrooms is poisonous? Or that if you set controlled fires, you can increase the growth of certain plants? People discovered these things through evidence and testing.

Why does it matter which pre-civilized people worshiped the sun? Because you brought it up as a claim. I was interested in where you came up with that.

You know what? This entire conversation is a waste of time. Go ahead and be a primitivist. To each their own.

It's only a waste of time because you can't (or refuse) to back up your bullshit. I ask you questions, and you ignore them.

To each their own.

Whatever you need to tell yourself to keep your sacred cows alive.

GET IN THE FREAKIN SPACE-POD DAVE!

14:24. Scientific rationality and religion are not even part of the same coin. Their respective underlying assumptions and worldviews are completely different and incommensurate. You'd need to specify what exactly this supposed coin represents. And unlike religion, science doesn't "worship" anything, except perhaps knowledge. And not sure why or how having an 'ideal' is somehow some kind of evil alienating thing. After all, isn't anarchy an ideal for anarchists? Isn't desiring something you don't have an ideal?

Your PoMo cynicism just comes across as pseudo-intellectualism.

"After all, isn't anarchy an ideal for anarchists? Isn't desiring something you don't have an ideal?"

It is for *some* people, but not people I'm particularly interested in associating with.

"Your PoMo cynicism just comes off as pseudo-intellectualism."

You just can't recognize genius when you see it, that's *your* problem. :P

23:06. So, you're not particularly interested in associating with anarchists? Then why are you on here?

"So you're not particularly interested in associating with anarchists?"

Only the ones who view anarchy as an 'ideal' to be chased after like a carrot dangling from a string - which, contrary to what you might be willing to accept, isn't all of them.

11:22. Then you have a different definition of the word 'ideal' from the rest of us. Because that's not how most of the English speaking world uses that word.

Let's face it, "most of the English-speaking world" isn't particularly bright.

11:55. Special pleading. Fascinating. You realize the meanings of words are not indicative of anyone's intelligence, right?

To clarify, what does the 'green' stand for? I've read through this thread and comments made on this re skills; I'm trying to envision 'the green.' I understand the anarchy but the green is vague. When I think of green, I see trees and fields with paths. I don't see factories, cars, roads etc. Does the green mean wind turbines, solar panels which means having, more or less, a similar infrastructure? And I see a much smaller population when I think of green.

since there's a wide variety under the green umbrella, the things you mention are some of the factors, although there are probably more green anarchists excited by forests and jungles and oceans than by fields and paths (both as metaphors and as places). i would add to your list, slower speeds, less mediation, smaller living groups (as well as overall population). and so on.

Every time I hang with Bay Area peeps I'm so fucking glad I avoided joining any power locus, whether tech institution or anarchist publishing house. Yall fuckers can keep rambling about the latest secret power plays behind the scenes; I pay nothing for rent & have real friends. There's a lot to like about the Bay, and I treasure the core friends I made, but sheesh, the entire Bay seems to be trapped playing some unending Kings Landing shit without any glimmer of embarrassment or self-awareness. Like you think DC is a transactional feudal court or NYC is some cutthroat networking scene? The bullshit hierarchies folks viciously climb in the Bay put them to shame, whether some journalism outlet, or tech NGO, or anarchist project. Power attracts unabashed power seekers.

download for those of us outside of the USA? I've just read through the issue descriptions on the site but no download option? Or is it hard copy only?

Black Seed is a hard copy project. It is an attempt to slow things down. It is a reminder of how anarchist publishing used to be. Intimate, f2f, and not shallow and dismissed in the way so much Internet publishing is. You can find most back issues at this site https://theanarchistlibrary.org/search?query=black+seed

I'm also guessing youd be down to ship a stack of them internationally if folks can cover the cost or at least help. kudos for sticking to print.

Print?! What about inks made from the ash of your enemies mixed with human urine like a real anarchist? What about stone tablets made only from volcanic rock you fukin sellouts!

The blood of enemies is longer lasting and does'nt run on the pages and can be still read even after apocalyptic rainfall.

What is "f2f" about reading a paper journal? Lol

'Bridging both time and work, the following is an article that was featured in one of Green Anarchy magazine’s “Back to Basics” primers. We see this as a starting point for further exploration and discussion. The topics covered are central to a green anarchist critique or perspective. This is not an exhaustive list, but rather the beginnings of what we hope will be an ongoing conversation – one to be further expanded, updated, and explored in subsequent issues of Black Seed.'
The piece goes on to describe Green Anarchy. Is there anything else that has since been added to the description of Green Anarchy?

does Zerzan, Tucker, Fitzpatrick and Aragorn! all want a very similar world of small groups, face-to-face, jungle/forest/wooded landscape, slower pace, much quieter, no division of labour, possibly some horticulture with foraging, no factories, no hi-tech, a much lower human population, re-skilling, 'traditional' medicines. And that the differences are more 'theoretical' than practical?

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