TOTW: 2020 - The year past, the year ahead

all my friends are sinking beneath the waves

Topic of the week - As 2020 comes to a close, let’s take a look back at the ongoing social upheavals worldwide, the inspiring international anarchist actions, some books that have kept you turning the pages, and the music that has been the soundtrack to it all. 2020 has been a year, to say the least.

What have been your favorite anarchist actions, communiques, projects (new and old), and events (IRL & AFK) from this past year? What made them standout? Even though you enjoyed them, do you have a critique to share as well? What about not-specifically-anarchist actions, events, and projects you’ve found inspiring? On the opposite end, do you have a list of embarrassments to the anarchist milieu from this past year? Looking ahead, what anarchist events & projects are you excited about participating in during the new year?

In media, what have been your favorite anarchist and not anarchist books that you’ve read (material released this past year or older)? What made the book important for you? How about music (new and old); and please – at risk of creating a comment thread of lonely YouTube links, add some information and perhaps a little sentiment, so that others may first read about what makes this artist / song appealing to you in 2020.

We’d also like to remember the many anarchist friends we’ve lost this past year: Aragorn!, Karen Smith, Jerimarie Liesegang, Diane Di Prima, Gary Sisco, Gutson Heyres, David Graeber, Alexei Sutuga, Doris Ensinger, Lucio Urtubia Jiménez, Stuart Christie, Mike Lee, Paolo Finzi, and Roberto Ambrosoli.

Here at ANews, we’re glad you’re reading this with us and send our best wishes to friends for an even more tumultuous 2021.

Previous year in review links:

TOTW: 2019 - The year past, the year ahead

TOTW: 2018 - The year past, the year ahead [ether pad link only, pre-ANews crash]

There are 61 Comments

Affreux. Le 2020, c’est l’ennui!

Un veritable “shit-sandwich”, sans le pain.

I wonder what's the next grand tragedy for 2021... us being forced to take a vaccine, as a precondition for going back to society's new/old normal? For sure, "society", who here wants more or it, right? True. But that also means all the stuff that allowed you to travel around, to feed yourselves, to keep warm in the winter... this ain't everything in your life, but let's say it's been a factor in enjoying it, to some extent.

So many here will agree that 2020 was a opportune year to do what we can to find alternatives to "life" in this society. Not all have succeeded, but let's also understand how this war that's called "society" is a multidimensional, asymmetric, immanent conflict; between seemingly overwhelming forces of CONTROL, and the forces of life. People that assert life, up against or regardless of the social-political conditions, are the true anarchists we can learn to befriend and team up with.

Of course here I ain't talking about redneck idiots protesting Covid in their megatrucks, as digression from endangering lives around on a daily basis.

What is "to live"? What does it mean, like Aragorn! would ask? The Covid Death Cult and the discussions around it have made me realize how this question was overlooked.

The best answer I got is that life simply means to assert and benefit from it. To enjoy it, the way that suits you. But you may say that it's also about experiencing, and experimenting, it... exploring, pushing its boundaries... all of these are ways that might suit some people. And as you may know, life is made of diversity. Myriads of manifestations, that you might/might not enjoy, but you got no reason to enforce on others, as per some projected, imagined notion of life...

Life *is*; it can only be. It's the plants growing through the cracks, because it just keeps being. it is like the continuous manifestation of a will to grow, expand, become greater, experience, learn, create, then move on to other realms.

I might also no longer be able to read from this site and troll it, at some point, due to some stupid injury, or me no longer having the physical support to be able to live any longer, coz a piano fell over my head or something (I especially would hope for a stupid and/or glorious death, but definitely not in confinement). What matters is that I did. I don't care if I wasn't the author of Desert or didn't had an entry in AJODA. I'll probably manage to get over my dyslexia and write something even better, out of reading a few dozen new books and a Goodreads account.... or maybe not... yawn.

What's better than just enjoying life, like any other animal? The feeling of having accomplished something that you can remember for a long, long time. But that, too is yet another imperative I could be tryin' to push on you...

Viva l'anarchie, for good!

I agree, What's better than just enjoying life, like any other animal? And then just dying from a virus in 3 days, nice!

The vast portion of people who died form the virus were living in conditions of aseptic captivity and also had preexisting health issues facilitating it.

Wild environments = rich bacterial cultures = healthier living outside = stronger immune systems.... n such such

"Wild environments = rich bacterial cultures = healthier living outside = stronger immune systems.... n such such"


urban people live longer, healthier, and more fulfilling lives than their rural counterparts. they also tend to be less obese, at a lower suicide risk and are less likely to get killed in an accident. also... rural people have to suffer all of the fucked up shit that urban people create for them ;)

just because you've bought into the myth of the rural Eden beyond the city (perhaps a nice place to retire to once you've earned it!) because it make you feel better...that doesn't make it true.

actually, you are generalizing in a way that is grossly inaccurate. urban live much healthier (and more fulfilling) than rural life? where the fuck have you ever seen this? most rural folks spend much more time outdoors, and being active, than city folk. the fat ranchers that you appear to be generalizing to represent all rural lives are no more prevalent that the pasty, fat, soft city dwellers sitting behind their computers and swiping left and right as their way of life.

there is no eden, but painting an ignorant picture of rural life is typical elitist bullshit. for some folks, city life is a necessity. for others, rural life is heaven. take your bigoted, uninformed opinions and shove them up your rose-scented ass.

Easy, Billy Bob. just because you disagree with the facts doesn’t make them untrue. There are plenty of studies you can read on the internets and then disregard anyway because city folk are mean elitists.

have you lived in both urban and rural areas? while you collect abstract numbers and statistics and find ways to fit them to your narrative, i LIVE. for many years, in the city. then for many more years, in the country. i can tell you unequivocally that in my direct experience, country folk are far healthier than city folk, even the ones that go to the indoor, air conditioned gym 5 days a week and buy only organic food from whole paycheck.

if i have misinterpreted sarcasm, oh well.

@04:50, Statistics do not care about your anecdotal observations.

Umm no, scientific fact shows cities breed disease. Luckily you can go outside every morning and yodel without wearing a mask.

RED ALERT... Chump did a brain fart!

Ok so basically if rural people are suffering .fucked up shit" brought by urban people, this means the urban environment was perfect for the development and spread of that shit, so THANK YOU to contradict yourself and sparing me the effort of making a fool of your brutish, incsoherent self!

It's pretty much what the Covid stats have shown: urban and suburban areas are the best environments for this virus and this is where the epidemic has spread the fastest and done the biggest death toll.

Rural areas got a much richer microbial environment and combined with clean air and water, and more physical nature of work, it usually contributes to healthier lifestyles. That doesn't include the dead towns filled with Netflix subscribers and Walmart shoppers, which aren't really rural lifestyles, but suburban. But what am I a dupe to think you'll even learn such simple assessment?

Holy shit you completely missed the sarcasm! Seeing as your reading skills are not so gud I will bow out of this enlightening debate since it isn’t polite to dunk on the intellectually challenged. So, yes, Billy Bob, you are right, the country is more gooder. Because microbes.

Retcon your "sarcasm" in a comment that was hardly sarcastic on the surface? Blaming it on your detractor's reading comprehension?

Why do I got the feeling of having seen this cop-out a hundreds times here, coming from the same usual bitch-ass pissant troll? FLEEEEEEE, I AM HERE SEEING UUUUUU!

yep, it is precisely that simple. NOT!
look for some nuance you binary bot.

What on earth would inspire you to describe American prisons as aseptic?

I was referring to nursing homes, and sheltered urban/suburban lives.

Since late summer, per capita case and death rates in rural areas have outpaced those in metropolitan areas. Sorry.

I'm burying this argument. Obviously rural areas have a predominantly homophobic, mask hating, gun-toting Trumpists who all get together in barns on the weekend so what do you expect?!

"Since late summer, per capita case and death rates in rural areas have outpaced those in metropolitan areas"

Ok, so what do you urbans and suburbans do during the summer in many regions, especially when there's int'l air travel restrictions? They travel to rural areas.

Again... nice 360 degrees, fool.

Don’t worry about what elitist urban do in the summer 08:56, your country time microbes and daily chores will protect you.

2021 Is gonna be my year I can feel it! Ultimate success and happiness, oh yeah

Yes, there's gonna be more room on the subway to hawl your wares and trinkets to the numerous stalls and markets around town ;)

On the opposite end, do you have a list of embarrassments to the anarchist milieu from this past year?

Anything said by Kevin Tucker on Twitter.
Liberty & Logos
All the anarchists that voted in the US presidential election.


Anarchists pushing the same prison society lockdown agenda of the state and silicon valley tech elites for fear of being optically mistaken for the far-right, essentially ceding the territory to the far-right and making them the defacto most radical faction in terms of pushing back against New Normalism.

So which version of Windows are y’all getting injected with?

"Anarchists pushing the same prison society lockdown agenda"

So you keep pushing the same bullshit straw men about "anarchists" only to serve your own authoritarian narrative and formations. Brilliant, idiot.

I would be thrilled to see anarchists become successful in their stated goals, because that would mean interrupting the terrifying implementation and congealment of New Normalist doctrine.

By all means, prove me wrong. Of course I know there are anarchists out there who share my preoccupations, but I believe these are the exception, not the rule. I look around at the anarchists in my personal life, as well as those I hear about online in various countries, and it's not encouraging.

Perhaps the subsequent generation of @s will turn things around.

Case in point:

the last english-language submission to "", a combative anarchist website ft. struggle against NN from a North American country was over 6 months ago.

Non-anarchists not wearing masks and not pushing for a prison society lockdown agenda!

Mass rollout of experimental mRNA vaccines developed in record-time, with unforeseen long-term consequences and with big pharma companies claiming exemption from all liability, as usual. These will become mandatory. Vaccine/health passports will be issued (already in effect in various countries). These will be necessary to get work, rent an apartment, go to school, buy food, move from state to state, province to province, etc. What's more is that it won't be, "one and done". You will be mandated, on pain of state violence, to line up for "covid shots" every 3 - 4 months. Covid will never go away. Temperature scanning will pave the way for biometric retinal scanning, all under the auspices of contact tracing and public safety.

Further on down the road, cash will be phased out, because, it will be argued, it is a vector of transmission for the virus. Financial privacy will end. Private ownership of vehicles will end. Autonomous drones and cars will patrol the streets and skies. Pretty much every facet of social life will go virtual. Technological innovations like Neuralink will eventually colonize every aspect of daily life and become de facto mandatory much in the same way that cell phones have colonized society and changed it in such a way as to become de facto mandatory.

Social credit systems governed by AI will rule in every country on Earth.

Talking about the World Economic Forum and "The Great Reset" will be met by so-called radicals with cries of "fake news!" or "conspiracy theory!" (automatically conflated with anti-semitism despite the total absence of any such content).

well "The Great Reset" rhetoric definitely put you in some shady corners of the online discourse and from what I've seen, fails to understand power for the most part but when it's just talking about the massive structural failures of capitalism rushing down on us, it's a strange but not baseless way of talking about modern monetary theory imo.

I prefer to get my economic theory from people who aren't just screeching in to their webcams with wild eyes most of the time BUT they're talking about very real and pressing issues.

...isn't supposed to "explain" political-economy to you (or anyone). That's what Marx is for. The Great Reset is a plan. It's not even a conspiracy theory. This is all happening right out in the open. You can read all about it on the WEF's website, although they do dress it up in "innocent"-sounding language.

To those who may not know, to sum it up: TGR is a plan for "global stability" being pushed by the ruling elites to remake the world into a smart prison enabled by new innovations in the interconnecting fields of AI, robotics, 5G, quantum computing, facial recognition, cashless monetary systems, genetic engineering, and more. It is being sponsored by, among others, the likes of Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, Karl Schwab, and a whole host of unfathomably rich and powerful men who apparently consider themselves to be the masters of humanity.

Hell... has written extensively about this in their latest issue: "against the 4th and 5th industrial revolutions". Would you consider the people at 325 to be, "people who are just screeching in to their webcams with wild eyes" ? Last I checked, they were still considered in good, credible standing with the international anarchist community.

"well "The Great Reset" rhetoric definitely put you in some shady corners of the online discourse"

lol, you speak as if @news wasn't also a part of this "shady corner" of the internet in it's own right.

no I didn't. I'm well aware that we're having this conversation next to a cyber sewage pipe. maybe you should climb down off that horse, hmm? Or can you not turn off the snark? I don't mean to be ableist if your face is permanently frozen in that sneer, friend.

the dark corners of the online space is exactly why it seems relevant to point out that a significant portion of those talking about "the great reset" aren't exactly benevolent in their own intentions, however valid their concerns may be.

as I said, a failure to understand power in the grand scheme would, for example, mistake the latest crop of technocrats and their grasping for something new.

You’re right that some of the people and political factions who’re talking about this are awful and with bad intentions. It’s also true that they lack a nuanced structural analysis (of capital, the state, and so on).

And finally, I agree with you that this latest grasping for power, as such, by technocrats, isn’t exactly new... but what’s significant about TGR imo is the way the pandemic is being used to accelerate trends and trajectories that have been in motion for a long time. This sudden exponential acceleration and deepening of misery is extremely alarming and is bringing in its train forms of social control that 1 year ago would’ve been UNTHINKABLE.

That’s all.

for real, check out that latest issue of 325.

Viruses will become self-aware and able to read English newspapers. They will discover that neo-liberal corporatists, usually old white men, are their worst enemies and responsible for fast tracking vaccine production and so in self-defense they develop a strain of themselves which singles out all old white men, who all die out by July 2021. Some old white men are spared if the virus happens to read an email or letter the man was writing which indicate that he is anti-corporate and amoral in his personal beliefs.
The world becomes happy and a nurturing ethos evolves and begins a new era of sustainable life on Earth and the recovery of environmental diversity.

That'd be clutch af.

ohhhhhhhh noooooooo! you MUST take the vaccine! Muh experts say so! Listen to SCIENCE!


but kinda an empty criticism when thats such a common feature in humans. To the leech troll: yup, he was just as fucked up as you are.

fuck that troll obviously but then I thought about it and iconoclastic dogma is kind of interesting as a concept? the proverbial gadfly, pestering everyone in to thinking harder? not entirely wrong.

I like "shapeshifting dogma" too.

Whatever you do, don't make me have to think harder. I like my ideological dogmas to be nice and clean and simple with no ambiguous shades of grey whatsoever!

Hurr durr durr!

Not yours, though. You've never had that happen -- and in that have plenty o' company in these parts!

... that I can see, realustically, will be either some sort of post-collapse, “mad max”-style warlord anarchy. Or, a 4th industrial techno-feudal society in which you would rather kill yourself than live in such an unnatural dystopia.

Some interesting times are coming...

... that I can see, realustically, will be either some sort of post-collapse, “mad max”-style warlord anarchy. Or, a 4th industrial techno-feudal society in which you would rather kill yourself than live in such an unnatural dystopia.
Some interesting times are coming...

This typifies the utter passivity, compulsive resignation and lack of nerve and vision characteristic of what gets called anarchism in today's United States. Apparently there's nothing left to do, and you are not the ones to do it.

I've gone the crypto-prepperist path, hording the basic necessities for survival in a dog eat dog dystopian future whilst displaying an optimistic outer confidence in humanity solving all its problems and living in harmony with all life on this planet.

What’s your vision? I ask in good faith.

"... that I can see, realustically, will be either some sort of post-collapse, “mad max”-style warlord anarchy. Or, a 4th industrial techno-feudal society in which you would rather kill yourself than live in such an unnatural dystopia."

So in a nutshell, global tech feudalism vs local old-school brutish warlord feudalism. Given how people are addicted to their internet it's pretty to guess that the first will win by a landslide and eventually (rightfully) crush the other.

Local macho despotism, btw, is not "anarchy". I thought this was simple enough for the simpletons to understand without further splaining...

Is that there is at least shade within those pollysaturated blood regimes. The technomachino cybernetic order is-As the late great Chuck Schuldiner would call it-1000 eyes of soft power enslavement. Modern anarchism/anarchy has not even recovered from the great 20th century reset that happened inner and post WWs. I think we should try to propagate against this one.

To the almighty Death!


Unless there are people who start to get forcefully broken from the matrix, that is "the real modern" or "the post modern" if you will. Technicolor-Dreamcast-Panopticons, one way mirrors, yummy food!

Of course not.

However, local macho despotism would be easier to escape/evade/resist, etc. than global feminized tech-feudalism.

I thought this was simple enough for the simpletons to understand without further splaining.

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