Chris Hedges vs. CrimethInc. on Violence: Will We Get the Debate We Deserve?

  • Posted on: 12 September 2012
  • By: worker

<table><tr><td>From <a href=" - By AK Thompson

<em>The debate, which centers on the role of violence in protests, is a tremendous opportunity, but only if we concede that we don't yet know how to win. If we don't start with this simple, brutal fact, it risks degenerating into one more spectacle to keep us mesmerized as the world burns.</em></p>
<p>The debate between Chris Hedges and the CrimethInc. Ex-Workers Collective, scheduled to take place September 12 at the City University of New York Graduate Center, is long overdue.</p>
<p>Squaring off to determine what role - if any - violence is to have in movements like Occupy, the opponents will march into one of the left's most treacherous minefields. And they want you to watch.</p>
<p>If activity on Facebook is any indication, the hall at CUNY will be packed. Meanwhile, the showdown's promised livestreaming has prompted many activists to set up viewing events at infoshops, or at house parties with beer and popcorn.</p>
<p>The terms of the debate are already well established; nevertheless, if there was ever such a thing as a diversity-of-tactics championship round, this surely would be it.</p></td><td><img title="This one puzzles me. What is the purpose of this debate? To feel good about a position from 6 months ago? To pie CH? To see our hero slay a dragon?" src=""></td></tr></table>
<p>Up until now, Hedges has maintained that there's no point in engaging with "black bloc" advocates. In <a href=";view=item&amp;id=6587:i... target="_blank">an interview posted on Truthout</a>&nbsp;on February 9, 2012, he admitted to not having spoken with black bloc participants when coming to the conclusion that they were Occupy's "cancer." In response, CrimethInc. declared that they would not enter into debate with figures like Hedges.</p>
<p>In their introduction to a first-person <a href="" target="_blank">black bloc testimonial </a> published on February 20, 2012, they wrote: "We do not accept the terms set by the mudslingers: Our intent is not to compete for ideological legitimacy on a battlefield of abstractions."</p>
<p>Now, seven months later, they've resolved to go toe to toe. Of course people want to watch. But will the event be a mere spectacle or will we rise to the occasion to ensure that it becomes something more?</p>
<p>From the Battle of Blair Mountain to the eviction of Occupy, the story of American radicalism is inseparable from the question of violence. Sometimes embraced, often denounced, but even more often sidestepped, debates about violence have tended to return (like all repressed phenomena do) with a frequency that only underscores their importance.</p>
<p>But while activists on both sides of the violence/nonviolence divide seem committed to their respective certainties, few would suggest that either position has brought us any closer to a collective understanding of what we must do to win.</p>
<p>Maybe this means that "we" will never be a unified force, that agreement on ends is not enough to see us through. Maybe it means that the violent opponents of constituted power are in fact enemies to the pacifists who trust that power can be shamed into doing the right thing. Then again, maybe it means that "we" - pacifists and advocates of a diversity of tactics alike - still haven't grasped what's essential.</p>
<p>In a context where the State continues to enjoy a monopoly on the legitimate use of force, it's hardly surprising that many of us go to great lengths to avoid describing our actions using the language of violence. Around the time that Chris Hedges denounced the black bloc as the "cancer of occupy," activist-journalist <a href="" target="_blank">Rebecca Solnit proclaimed</a> that social change arose not from violence, but from "people power."</p>
<p>In her estimation, this power was evident during November's general strike in Oakland, where activists helped to shut down the ports in what she described as "a triumphant and mostly nonviolent day of mass actions."</p>
<p>I will be the first to concede that "people power" sounds good. At very least, it doesn't have the same bad name that violence does. Nevertheless, it's hard not to wonder what this "power" amounts to, or where it ultimately comes from.</p>
<p>Given its broad appeal, it's not surprising that Solnit landed upon the general strike as a compelling example of people power. But if people's power is the antithesis of violence as Solnit proposes, and if the general strike gives that power a concrete form, then what are we to make of the fact that the general strike was a significant reference point for some of the 20th century's most significant meditations on the question of political violence?</p>
<p>In his "Critique of Violence" (1921), Walter Benjamin recounted how strikes called the state's monopoly on the legitimate use of force into question and how, in response, capitalist countries began incorporating the "right" to strike into their legal paradigms. In this way, they began placing restrictions on what strikes might look like.</p>
<p>Today, strikes have become highly ritualized procedures that bear little resemblance to their violent precursors. Nevertheless, as the recent <a href=" target="_blank">Quebec student strike</a> has made clear, they continuously threaten to erupt into moments of sovereign contestation. For this reason, and as Benjamin indicated, the strike remains essentially violent because its participants tend to "exercise a right in order to overthrow the legal system that has conferred it."</p>
<p>In Benjamin's account, violence either works to preserve an existing legal framework or to establish a new one. Law-preserving violence commits people (police and bosses, to be sure, but also "innocent" bystanders) to custodial care for a crumbling world.</p>
<p>In contrast, law-making vio¬lence arises between competing sovereignties, one ascendant and one in decline. In this formulation, the measure of violence ceases to be "harm" and becomes instead the degree to which the status quo was maintained or transformed. Law-preserving violence is generally sanctioned; law-making violence is not. The realm in which there is no violence at all becomes infinitesimally small. Even doctrinally nonviolent protesters don't escape, since their actions rely upon the violence that established the legal rights and legal power to which they appeal.</p>
<p>In a recent edition of Occupy's theoretical journal <a href="" target="_blank">Tidal</a>, Gayatri Spivak outlined the history of the general strike and elaborated the means by which it could be retooled for our new global situation. Along with other figures, Spivak's history makes reference to the work of the now mostly-forgotten French theorist of the general strike, Georges Sorel. But while Sorel gets a nod, Spivak makes no mention of the fact that his considerations on the general strike are to be found in "Reflections on Violence" (1908), a pro-violence tract of the first order. This omission must surely have been deliberate, since she goes on to insist that the general strike is "by definition nonviolent."</p>
<p>Strategically useful though it may be, Spivak's assertion does not stand up to scrutiny. Following in the tradition of Sorel and Benjamin, even the provocative black cultural nationalist Amiri Baraka gravitated toward the general strike as oppositional violence's most obvious political form.</p>
<p>Contemplating the 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Baraka (then LeRoi Jones) suggested that, in response, "The US Steel plant in that city should have been shut down by Negroes."</p>
<p>Black workers should have walked out of every job they hold in the city. A general strike should have been called. An attempt should have been made to shut down completely the city's industrial resources. That city should have died, should have been killed by Negroes.</p>
<p>Such urbicide, he avowed, was unquestionably an act of violence. However, as with Marx (who professed that the proletarian revolution would make the bourgeois individual "impossible" without requiring that every shop owner be killed), Baraka envisioned the general strike as a form of violence that could transform social relations without ever requiring that physical harm be inflicted on people.</p>
<p>This past spring, the Occupy movement became enthralled by visions of a post-thaw resurgence that would culminate in a general strike starting on May Day. But despite these ambitions, which were endorsed by activists on both sides of the diversity-of-tactics debate, many movement participants ignored - or remained oblivious to - the violent character of their proposed plans. Had this violence been acknowledged, we may have discovered (tactical differences notwithstanding) that the movement's nonviolent wing had more in common with its putative "cancer" than we'd previously realized.</p>
<p>Rather than acknowledging the tendency toward violence underlying both the movement's most significant moment, and its most significant aspirations, commentators on both sides of the violence/nonviolence divide have tended to allow the debate to slip back into a well-carved and circuitous groove. Like a broken record, the proponents of nonviolence assert the strategic and ethical superiority of their position without ever acknowledging the State violence that underwrites it. Nevertheless, as Geoff Berner put it, "To live outside the law you must be vicious; to live inside you must depend upon the viciousness of strangers."</p>
<p>Meanwhile, activists who have come to recognize violence's productive character have opted once again to convey their discovery in the coded, user-friendly language of a "diversity of tactics."</p>
<p>Does that mean that the scheduled debate brings us back to the "battlefield of abstractions" that CrimethInc. hoped to avoid? It might not be inevitable, but reading the comments on activist web sites makes me worry. Although it's an arbitrary sampling method, I can't shake the feeling that we've reached a point of intractability that makes learning new things impossible. We've already chosen sides. And what we want most is the fight.</p>
<p>How else are we to explain the dramatic recurrence of pugilistic metaphors on activist message boards? "Hedges is about to be so smacked down," wrote one message board contributor on August 16, 2012. Pleased that the debate would be livestreamed, they concluded by promising a "viewing party at [their] apartment." "Mine too," wrote another, adding: "If ever there was a celeb death match to remember, this would be it." Extending the metaphor in a subsequent entry, another participant expressed hope that the CrimethInc. speaker would be "working up a sweat preparation for this debate!!" The entry concludes in an explosion of fandom enthusiasm: "We love you and don't let us down!!"</p>
<p><a href="http:/" target="_blank">Others weighed in</a> too. "This is going to be awesome," wrote one commenter. "I hope Hedges cries." "I hope Hedges bleeds," wrote another, perhaps concerned that crying was not sufficient for a contender guilty of taking pot shots at the black bloc. In the end, however, even bleeding was not enough: "I hope Hedges dies." Taking a more cautious tone, another participant wrote: "I got nothing but love for CrimethInc., just hope they really throw a good punch."</p>
<p>Are we waiting for a boxing match? A case could be made that we're about to witness the activist equivalent of the Rumble in the Jungle. A clever journalist could claim that CrimethInc. can float like a butterfly and sting like a bee (it's not for nothing that one of the books that most defined them in the early years was called "Evasion"). Meanwhile, Hedges - a former boxer himself - could be considered a miniature George Foreman. Unrelenting and unapologetic, he may well be the heavyweight champion of moral journalism. As was true of Ali in 1974, CrimethInc. seems to be the underdog favorite going into the bout; and, like Ali before them, it seems like their strategy will be to stand firm, cast evasion aside, and draw Hedges out.</p>
<p>But a debate is not boxing, and activism is not a spectator sport. As we prepare for this important event, let's not lose sight of how inadequate our certainties have proven to be thus far. Neither doctrinal nonviolence nor respect for a diversity of tactics has allowed us to come to terms with violence's omnipresence and inescapability, or to develop a response that's equal to the task. The debate is a tremendous opportunity, but only if we concede that we don't yet know how to win. If we don't start with this simple - brutal - fact, September 12 risks degenerating into one more spectacle to keep us mesmerized as the world burns.</p>


Well, since we're anarchists and don't believe in representation, it doesn't matter what CrimethInc says, since we'd all say different things, in fact, Chris Hedges should have to debate every single anarchist for this to make sense.

Or someone could just kidnap him.

You mean "kneecap him"? lol

But yeah, this whole event feels like a TV debate for anarchists. Fuck this!

Anarchists in NYC should rather storm the fucking place and throw Starbucks shit coffee at Hedges!

And good for Hedges that I'm nowhere close to New York. He'd get a healthy dose of anarchy.

it is clear your definition of anarchy is very questionable. From this definition of yours the bullies at schools are anarchists and also the skinhead fascists. One will think such things are of authoritarian assholes.

This event seems a little dumb anyway. If one disagrees with this Hedges guy one can just ignore him.

But but but.... Chris Hedges IS an authoritarian asshole!

How can anarchists pretend having a civilized debate with this world-class bad-mouther of the black bloc??? Or perhaps you think the black bloc are small school bullies too? I don't think the gals and queers in my BB team would agree with that!

Okay... if you are certain that Chris Hedge is a worthy interlocutor, then let's bring a Crimethinc Vs Alex Jones as well!

...and still it's gonna feel like watching anarchy on TV.


Teams affirm the nationalistic tendencies within our culture. Abolish all sports.... except for queer watersports that is.... Anyone wearing yellow laces?

I was exaggerating with the BB team thing... kinda like an A-team reference, or something. I know the black bloc is a tactic, not some kind of group or organization.

Real-life sports are okay, without all the stupid rules and bounds. Didja ever tried city-wide molotov football? It got very famous in Greece, but Athens are winning almost everytime against Saloniki (D-fense!!!). More local junior matches are fun too, like Heraklion Vs Volos.

Chris Hedges uses doubletalk to try to convince the occupy movement he's a world class revolutionary as opposed to the fucking spectator his pudgy first world ass is, and that not only is he so great but Occupy is so small he can direct the movement as easily as he can sift an ass cheek. He's a fucking snake. And I'm against non- coordinated, non- responsive to state violence bloc in regards to the whole Occupy thing. There are some cases that prove me wrong of course, but I still think it was nothing but a meeting place and platform at best. Plus he generalized, and presented shitty underresearched points up while running his mouth about the Catholic Workers.

hear hear about CWC not representing us.

As for the rollover question, precisely because this is a quiet time, it's a good time to advance the case for militant resistance, and this debate seems to have talen off as a visible place to do that. Next time things kick off, the fewer of these arguments we have to have, again the better, and events like this can help with that. They might also encourage an anarchist culture in which we are used to explaining ourselves comprehensibly whenever challenged, which would go far in times of public unrest when other people are trying to decide which road to take.

As for the roll over question: I was assuming the debate was a hoax and once everyone was watching (in person or via live stream) Brian and Chris Hedges were going to do some kind of coordinated dance routine while singing "Never Gonna Give You Up"....

Sooo 2010!

Exactly! it's been long enough that no one would suspect it and it's funny again. Like 9/11.

Explaining ourselves comprehensibly whenever we're challenged? Now THAT would be a nice change.

I have often found myself being the only anarchist able to be able to calmly explain why we believe what we do and why we're opposed/for things in public. Which is really sad, because if you're going to declare yourself an anarchist, you should realize that this is the most alien and difficult political concept to most people and you should damn well know your shit if you're going to espouse anarchism, let alone engage in conversation/arguments with non-anarchists (regardless of if you think it's worth it to convince people of anarchism, by not knowing your shit you contribute to the media's ability to mis-characterize our positions). It seems like at least here in the States, most anarchists I've met when confronted by either a curious person or hostile person, responds one of three ways:

1) They act like an unlikeable asshole, don't clearly articulate their position and just yell or act like a dick to the other person with regurgitated slogan-speak, like a lot of Leftist activist types like to do. It's super obnoxious and useless and it's a behavior that's associated with leftists.

2) They go off into erudite, academic speak that just goes over the heads of any curious individual and makes one look like they're totally dissociated from reality. Cram your French philosopher-speak.

3) They stand there not saying anything and wait for another anarchist who's either better read or more comfortable with engaging with non-anarchos to answer the question/comment/hostility. This is what I've experienced time and time again, and while I realize some people are just shy individuals, the majority of folks I've seen behave like this are not shy, which leads me to think that they haven't really thought things through if they can't address a difficult question by a non-anarcho.

challenge of the week. explain it to your mother. (if you know her or are still on speaking terms) extra credit- your kids.

Does that mean that the scheduled debate brings us back to the "battlefield of abstractions" that CrimethInc. hoped to avoid? It might not be inevitable, but reading the comments on activist [sic] web sites makes me worry. Although it's an arbitrary sampling method, I can't shake the feeling that we've reached a point of intractability that makes learning new things impossible. We've already chosen sides. And what we want most is the fight.

How else are we to explain the dramatic recurrence of pugilistic metaphors on activist message boards? "Hedges is about to be so smacked down," wrote one message board contributor on August 16, 2012. Pleased that the debate would be livestreamed, they concluded by promising a "viewing party at [their] apartment." "Mine too," wrote another, adding: "If ever there was a celeb death match to remember, this would be it." Extending the metaphor in a subsequent entry, another participant expressed hope that the CrimethInc. speaker would be "working up a sweat preparation for this debate!!" The entry concludes in an explosion of fandom enthusiasm: "We love you and don't let us down!!"

Others weighed in too. "This is going to be awesome," wrote one commenter. "I hope Hedges cries." "I hope Hedges bleeds," wrote another, perhaps concerned that crying was not sufficient for a contender guilty of taking pot shots at the black bloc. In the end, however, even bleeding was not enough: "I hope Hedges dies." Taking a more cautious tone, another participant wrote: "I got nothing but love for CrimethInc., just hope they really throw a good punch."

1) Thompson called Anarchist news dot org an "activist website." This is the dumping ground for communiques from the ultra left. AK insults us by suggesting otherwise.

2) I am a particularly prolific troll. To paraphrase the accusations of one shitbag Marxist: It is my most significant political activity. I am motivated by hate, the lulz, and the necessity to destroy anonymous Internets as places of influence.

I wrote all but two of the comments quoted in the article. In fact, I often conduct whole conversations with myself for your amusement.

Trolling is no thankless task. I'm no martyr! I enjoy my work. I toil knowing I command the esteem of my peers and the ire of moral dandies everywhere.

3) This isn't the first time a "journalist" has quoted me either. One of the May Day journalist assault articles quoted my trolls, too. This is the first time a journalist has quoted several of my trolls all in one piece, and I find that particularly lulzy given the line, "Others weighed in too."

4) This is to the journalists: GO FUCKING KILL YOURSELF. Barring your commitment to becoming an hero, STOP QUOTING ANARCHIST NEWS DOT ORG COMMENTS.

Nothing that is posted here should be read, by anyone, ever. If you want to get a comment from an anarchist get it touch with well known salmon fucker Derrick Jensen or well known pig fucker Bob Black.

We had a vote at the last CrimethInc. convergence and they were chosen to represent us. It's official. Trust me.

5) STOP TAKING THE INTERNET SERIOUSLY. The Internet is full of hateful anons exactly like me, but also the FBI and your local police department.

DON'T TAKE PART IN SERIOUS DISCUSSION, NOR MAKE DECISIONS BASED ON WHAT YOU READ, ON ANONYMOUS FORA. To do so is to fall victim of astroturfing paid for my our enemies.

A more solid argument for removing anonymous comments has never been made. Can someone make a case for the defense?

making people register doesn't make the site safe. to the extent the troll has a point, it's that comments (not just anonymous ones, but also ones made by registered people you don't know) shouldn't be trusted. the fact that people seem to trust comments anyway is the problem more than journalists trying to capitalize on the collected comments on anews.

the other reason to not allow random comments is because it arguably makes our friends into sadder and more bitter people, but i'm not sure that a website can do a lot to change that.

Hi dot. I've enjoyed trolling you on Anarchy 101. I enjoy your contributions there because you are so smart, you're well read and practiced, and you know how to cut through bullshit.

You've even educated me on several of my troll questions. We are all less ignorant for your toil.

I look forward to seeing my trolls published in book format. Thank you for that pleasure. Trolling is truly a blessing, and it pays dividends.

You're right that in so far as I have a point, my point is that NOTHING ON THE (PSEUDO|ANO)NYMOUS INTERNETS SHOULD BE TRUSTED.

Accounts mean nothing. I distrust namefags more than I distrust anon. /r/anarchism has taught me this heightened distrust - Reddit is even worse than Anarchist news dot org

I was pleased when worker posted the agony and the passion of the rape of Christ, and even more pleased when they suffered troll's remorse. After that I even stopped trolling for a week or so. Many of us did. But the trolling came back, and so did I, and even worker started to troll us again.

There is only one way to solve this problem. When the time comes, you will know what to do.

- a particularly prolific troll

compliments from a troll... heh. that's some next level shit.

i find myself curious what you think the internet *is* good for (besides lulz, of course). do you think there can be good conversations that don't require trust on anews? or do you think the always questionable motivations trump/sully any possible benefit that we gain from talking to people we don't know face to face?

ps: i so look forward to knowing what to do. you have no idea!

I read "Ender's Game" as a child and I attribute to that reading 1) my understanding of the need for overwhelming violence if violence must be employed, and 2) the ability of even a couple of children to move the world's discourse if given enough sock puppets and a place to stand.

There can be no good discussion mediated by the Internet between unauthenticated participants. See: Chat Roulette, 4Chan and Reddit. There can be no good discussion mediate by the Internet between authenticated participants if they do not have sufficiently strong bonds to all other participants. See: Facebook and listservs

A very effective and insightful hacker (maker, not criminal) and venture capitalist, Paul Graham, has written about online communities in a short essay. Perhaps a reading of the essay would help you see things a little more as I do. Of most applicability are the Submissions and Comments sections.

Short background needed to grok linked essay: Paul Graham got wealthy with an Internet startup he and friends founded in the 90s. In the mid-2000s Internet economy boom he started the first internet start-up "incubator," Y-Combinator. This incubator is responsible for Reddit, Dropbox, AriBnB, and many more with about $1 billion of value created overall. Hacker News is like Reddit but for the hacker (again, maker, not criminal) and startup scene/culture and serves to promote Y-Combinator startups and Y-Combinator itself - very shrewd. The essay details his lessons learned as proprietor of Hacker News.

ender's game has some very good lessons in it for sure.
but i'm confused by you listing places that don't have good discussions as evidence that there can be no good discussions anywhere online.
i guess your point is that there can't be good discussion if the context is hopelessly compromised? and that anews didn't use to be, but is now? but i'm not sure you've made your point.
the voting up of kaossec is, to me, a case in point. i don't believe that anyone pays any attention to the voting, (which is a better statement about voting--in general and here--then anything else).
and while paul graham is indeed an interesting person and quite smart, he is not an anarchist, and if the thing that we want anarchists to do is to learn to think for ourselves, and to be smart and light on our feet, then we need sites of varying dangerousness to encourage that and to test it. i think that anews is a part of that over all training, and that dedicated, well-intentioned trolls throw off the curve more than they aid in the effort.
which is fine, btw.
it's all grist for the mill.
i'm just sayin...
but i will continue to think about your points. i definitely agree with graham that the internet is so new, that we are a long ways from understanding how it will eventually be best used (assuming that there is any room for "best use" in the coming years).
thanks for answering me.

The snivelling dork who wrote that essay is pro-broken window theory ...

All smashy-smashy anarchists are pro-broken window theory! So what's yer point?

You're a fucking idiot ... broken window theory is how fascists justify gentrification. Attributed to Rudy Giuliani originally but now used by law enforcement in most major north american cities to harass the poorest of the poor. You're too busy getting your "lulz" to know anything about the streets or am I talking to a different clueless jackass?

Yes, see anarchist news from the point of view of a venture capitalist, and act accordingly. good plan.

Besides his insights in that essay, paid sockpuppets must be considered here on Anarchist news dot org. I know without a doubt that Reddit is consistently gamed through voting and through sockpuppet comments. During the build up to the apex of Occupy* it became obvious that corporate, maybe government, but probably corporate, shill accounts were commenting and voting. They would vote up their own comments or comments of similar affinity and mercilessly downvote article submissions and comments of any radical persuasion.

One memorable instance was a totally fake Longshoreman speaking out against the port shutdowns.

I cannot help but think a similar thing is happening here. Just this week we have already seen the in-built voting mechanism, one that hardly anyone uses and I hope no one takes seriously, used to provide the illusion of legitimacy to whoever KaosSec is and whatever their agenda is.

It's not just the S17 stuff, journalists quoting me or other trolls, worker as the biggest troll of all, or us trolls that is the problem. One problem is that real enmities are forming between anti-authoritarians because of this shit. It's toxic and recursively self-referential and probably does the cause of total freedom more harm than good. I know for a fact too much mental and psychic energy goes in to considering Anarchist news dot org in my city.

The solution I alluded to: Nuke it from orbit. It's the only way.

The anarchist Internet media landscape is different now than it was 8 years ago. Anarchist news dot org is no longer needed, and it only serves to provide a central location to be surveilled and manipulated. Anarchist news dot org is both a high point on the topography of anarchist media and a locus; centrality and topographical spikes must be considered harmful and corrected.

Perhaps it can negate itself, do some soul searching, and come back in a New Synthesis. worker has been talking for a year+ about a redesign or a change in form. Now is the time to join the experimentation committee.

There are real, persistent database (data corruption) issues that cause old submissions to disappear to consider. Perhaps disable new submissions, comments, etc. keep the site up as an archive for now while it is re-imagined.

Whatever happens, DO NOT GIVE UP THE DOMAIN NAME. I'll mail you cash to reserve it for the next 10 years or something. There are too many backlinks and Google juice to give it up or allow it to fall into the wrong hands.

"I know for a fact too much mental and psychic energy goes in to considering Anarchist news dot org in my city."

This is stupid. How much is too much? What 'should' this 'mental and psychic energy' go towards?

Hilarious Potential responses:
People are commenting on anews and not breaking enough windows.
I want to volunteer at the infoshop but I am spending too much time on roll-overs.
A-News killed Food Not Bombs.

actually, i kind of agree with him. worker should just ditch the comments. it's too dangerous and there's plenty more secure places for anarchist discussions online. and a more insightful review of articles could help dissuade the dangerous disinfo happening right now.

Create problems so then you can create "solutions"

the fuck you implying?

Hi dot. I hope Little Black Cart will come to the 3rd Annual Carrboro Anarchist Bookfair again this year.

Defense Trial Exhibits. Phase 1. Exhibit Number 1138.ACAB:
The Lulz

Don't you mean "The Luh"?

.....Dude, pigs read this fucking website. I probably would not comment if I couldn't be anonymous, and would certainly visit lss as a result of that.. It's essential to retaining at least a shred of safety.

Sometimes people are fuckheads. It's not fair though, to take away anonymous posting from everyone because of that.....

To speak of fairness is to speak of rope in the home of the world champion of jumping rope.

.....Dude, w/r/t the pigs, in so far as we aspire to be a threat to the dominant paradigm, that is, in so far as we are the self identified enemies of all states, it would not be unreasonable for at least an ongoing tap-and-trace to be active on Anarchist news dot org. Proper jurisprudence practically demands such.

Do not delude yourself about your safety in visiting this site w/o Tor, I2P or similar.

Yes, there's no such thing as safety but why make things LESS safe?

I do not believe that forcing the use of pseudonymous accounts will make use of Anarchist news dot org any less safe. I believe that Anarchist news dot org must have all traffic to and from it logged by our enemies. I believe this enough to go through the very minor pain to always use Tor while I'm Internetting.

Perhaps forcing the use of pseudonymous accounts will provide a reveal to the illusion of a degree of safety that you, and surely others, must be laboring under. Perhaps that would be better.

This is really fucking simple, if you put a name to every comment you put out, then those comments can be traced backed to you and used against you in court. Like they do every time the fucking fascists go awol. but only after leaving their mad ramblings on the internet for the media to hype and the court to seal the deal. Mass anonymity on the web is what prevents this from happening to @'s when shit goes least for now

I'm with others on that... registration is a safety concern.

Sure, the trolling issue is a problem, but not one that we couldn't overcome as of now. Keep it chaotic and conflictual. Eventually it'll turn into a daily cheesy wrestling match for anarchists and non-anarchists alike.

"In fact, I often conduct whole conversations with myself for your amusement."
me, too.

So, are you replying to yourself now or what?

no, im not the op. are you?


no, me.

LOl, you're so annoying and stupid. I think people used to have semi-serious discussions here. Anarchy 101 is supposed to be an information hub. There's even a book coming out. People like you have made all that change.

pay ten thousand dollars go to their class on anarchy.

Hi. Thank you for noticing my annoyance and stupidity. It has been a pleasure and I couldn't have done it without you.

"I think people used to have semi-serious discussions here."

They did used to. Can you see how having semi-serious discussions on an anonymous, lightly moderated forum is a bug and not a feature?

No one should take the Internets seriously. It was these semi-serious discussions that I, among others, sought to destroy.

We have largely succeeded, but even in our success we have not fully insulated this site from manipulation by our enemies. In our success we have even created other problems. I'll be the first to admit these shames.

"Anarchy 101 is supposed to be an information hub."

It remains so.

There will be a book with my trolls printed in them. I'm a published author! I'm proud!

No, it's you no one should take seriously.

"Can you see how having semi-serious discussions on an anonymous, lightly moderated forum is a bug and not a feature?"

Yes, I can see how that is a bug for sophists, capitalists, and sadistic morons such as yourself. You're the enemy who has manipulated the conversations here into disinformation and nonsensical rubbish. You have nothing to be proud of, but keep boasting about what a great troll you are. I saw another board go down last year that another one of my friends runs; I wonder if you were one of the poison trolls there as well. My guess is: yes.

*laughs* fucking truthout/dig/bark liberals read the comments section. imagine that...

First person to give Chris hedges a big wet sloppy kiss gets my vote for prez!

THIS is how the debate should go:

Chris Hedges talks first, then CrimethInc's rebuttal, followed by walking out:

Chris Hedgetrimmer's thoughts on revolution if someone breaks a window:

"I ain't never gonna give you up
I ain't never gonna let you down, baby
I ain't never gonna give you up
Hey, hey, hey, hey"

As the troll correctly identified at the end of the last Hedges thread as "super troll," I am hurt BUTT HURT! that none of *my* trolls were quoted in this article. And no, I'm not the "prolific troll" who has come out to claim his victory, though he is apparently motivated by many of the same concerns I am.

LKE 4 prezzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

I think it's really important to put some history and context with that statement. If you look at the LOST SIGNAL


do the debaters on violence ever stop to ponder the legitimacy of the concept of ‘violence’?

that is, rebecca solnit has a good point;

“social change arose not from violence, but from "people power."

the world is a continually transforming relational space, according to modern physics.

‘transforming’,.... ‘transforming’ .... ‘transforming’....

‘violence’ is not a peer concept to ‘transformation’.

‘violence’ is an explosive release of energy, often associated with ‘destruction’, in the course of some relational dynamics. it is a secondary phenomenon not a primary phenomenon.

why do we mistakenly see it as a primary phenomenon?

because in our Western worldview, we do not acknowledge the role of space in dynamic behaviour. our view of dynamics is artificially constrained to ‘what things-in-themselves-do’ by our implicit, habitual imposing of absolute space and absolute time reference framing.

if you ‘corner’ an animal and progressively close in on him [close down his established free associations with his habitat], he may manifest an ‘explosive release of energy’. can we judge his behaviour in its own right, since he was the first to flinch and call his behaviour ‘bad’ or ‘abnormal’?

we cannot legitimately speak of ‘his behaviour’ out of the context of the transformation of spatial relations that was the deeper source of the explosive release. ‘the balloon bursts’ is a convenient simplification attributing the dynamic behaviour to ‘the thing-in-itself’ when the source of the dynamic was the transformation of spatial-relations in an outside-inward accommodating – inside-outward asserting sense.

if 1% of the world population cornered the other 99% by monopolizing 999,999,999 billionths of the land and its live-sustaining nurturant resources, or if the few put an armed guard around the only oasis in the desert, ... and calmly sat around waiting for action, they would surely get it by way an explosion of energy called ‘violence’ that always occurs in nature’s dynamic where things out-of-balance seek to restore balance, ... where the stretched spring seeks to recoil, where the compressed spring seeks to rebound, whether by way of lightning discharge of electrical charge imbalance, by way of earthquake to ease the rising tension between rock plates or avalanche to relieve the excess of mountain rock over valley depression or by wave crest falling into wave trough etc. etc.

but no, mainstream science which is the ‘go-by’ of western civilization deals only in ‘what things-in-themselves do’. the spatial-relational aspect is ignored. you can talk about the rock that rolled down the mountain but make no mention of the fact that the mountain has a rock-sized hole in it. you can talk about a thousand rocks rolling down the mountain and that the story of each rock rolling down is taken to be ‘the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me god’. and then someone will have the afterthought to remark that the mountain is not there anymore.

the dynamic never was in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ and mainstream science renders it. the dynamic was the transformation of relational space as in modern, machean physics.

if a tract of land is a ‘thing-in-itself’ then when a man buys a tract of land, that is a dynamic that is complete in itself. you can talk about the acquisition of a thousand tracts of land and the story of each tract acquisition is taken to be ‘the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me god’. no ulterior motives here, just normal transactions complete in themselves. but when the 99% have not enough land to stand on to even lie down on much less plant a garden, the 99% need only see the 1% start pulling down their pants zipper to understand what sort of solution is in store for them, without an explosive release of energy aka ‘violence’ to restore balance.

why is the acquisition of tract of land taken to be like any other acquisition of a tract of land? because the tract of land seen as a ‘thing-in-itself’ commodity depends upon the assumption of absolute/infinite space. there is no ‘reciprocal backpressure’ in euclidian space, but there is in the real physical world of our experience.

if space were an infinite flat plane we could just keep moving on further if we didn’t like our relationships where we were. but we can’t move on elsewhere when we live in the finite space on the surface of a sphere, and are penned inside a sovereign state. we are forced to endure Mach’s principle effects where “the dynamics of the inhabitants are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat at the same time as the dynamics of the habitat are conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants.” the big fish can monopolize the nurturances of the common space and monopolize control and possession of the common space and drop their copious shit dumps into the common space, and the little fish are forced to live in garbage dumps and beg for what they can’t scrape out of the garbage.

you can see for yourself what’s wrong with the concept of ‘violence’. its treated as an ‘event-in-itself’, a conflict between ‘two opposing entities’, ‘us’ and ‘them’, because science routinely reduces dynamics to such interactions. gravity may be a tensional field, but one measures it as if it derived from the interaction of two masses.

‘violence’ is a concept that has been ‘de-relationalized’. when you corner an animal, you are transforming his relations with the relational space he is included in. his life is being changed. his open space is becoming a cage in a zoo. the people closing in on him are the bars of the cage, ... but all we talk about is ‘his sudden violent attack’. that’s because mainstream science reduces all dynamics to ‘what things-in-themselves do’ and ignores the larger picture in terms of the transformation of relational space. that’s why Mach quit what he called ‘The Church of Physics’. that’s why Nietzsche calls the ‘doer-deed’ view of dynamics ‘total Fiktion’.

it is bloody ‘total Fiktion’. the concept of ‘violence’ as an interaction between two entities, ‘self’ and ‘other’ is ‘total Fiktion’. it is extracted from the physical reality of the transforming relational space by the imposing of an absolute space and absolute time reference framing. can’t you just see the cornered tiger sitting there on his own, in our viewing frame? he paces back and forth quietly inside of our viewing frame, and then ‘all of a sudden, he explodes in violence. he is no longer a nice tiger, he is a bad tiger who bites and scratches others for no reason.

science has the same model for everyone. everyone is a local system with its own internally driven and directed behaviour. if his behaviour is bad, there is only him and his internal processes to blame. stealing is bad just like violence. jean valjean was bad for stealing a loaf of bread. everyone is independent so science says. everyone is the full and sole source of their own behaviour, science says. science does not acknowledge mach’s principle that the social collective conditions the dynamics of the common living space which is at the same time conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants. in other words, science’s models are too over-simplified to conceive of a subset of a collective putting the screws on another subset of the collective through the mediating medium of the relational space they are both included in. science does not acknowledge that space is relational [except in relativity and quantum theory]. science models things as if space is a non-participant. that is the only way to get to a model of dynamics in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’.

the concept of ‘violence’, using science’s ‘what things-in-themselves do’ modeling paradigm, is a conflict between one thing and another thing. space does not come into it. ‘violence’ is thus what the tiger does to the men in the circle around it. the men may be carrying spears and closing in but science does not call that ‘violence’. ‘violence’ is conceived of only in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’.

the concept of ‘violence’, when it is taken to be ‘a dynamic in itself’ is ‘total Fiktion’. ‘violence’ is a release of energy akin to that which comes from a compressed spring. if you compress a spring to its limit and your fingers that are policing it and keeping it ‘contained’ wobble, lookout, because the squeeze you put on that thing is about to ‘reflect back’ at you and injure you.

the debate should not be about whether or not to allow violence. it should be about whether or not to allow putting the squeeze on people.

emile I think you make a great point. If I could give a bit of context and history to how LOST SIGNAL


science has the same model for everyone. everyone is a local system with its own internally driven and directed behaviour.

No, science doesn't. It certainly did at one point but that is far from true now.

The medical profession, which is distinct from science, definitely does this, although that is changing somewhat into a more holistic or systemic approach slowly catching on in many cases.

can you explain how it "certainly did" but doesnt anymore?

science is 'trying to evolve' and i cite Mach and Poincare and Schroedinger who were all pioneering change in the foundations of science, and who found 'science' as a political community of scientists very resistant to change.

an acknowledgement of the relational nature of space has emerged in general relativity and quantum physics, but it has not been incorporated in the 'science' that Western civilization has institutionalized in our systems of justice, governance, business/economy.

in absolute space, dynamic events are understood as 'events-in-themselves'. 'the rock rolls down the mountain' is a statement that makes sense.

in relational space,[in a finite and unbounded space], there are no dynamic events-in-themselves, there is only 'transformation'. the rock rolling down the mountain is a transformation of spatial relations, not an event capturable in terms of 'what things-in-themselves do'.

'science' as it is thought about and deployed in the most of the world, and certainly in the sustaining of hierarchies and sovereign state governments, justice systems and business dynamics, continues to understand dynamics in terms of 'what things-in-themselves do'.

but our experience supports the relational space view of dynamics where dynamics are transformations of spatial relations. when the 'inhabitant' consumes something 'out there' [e.g. petroleum], the transforms both himself and the [finite and unbounded] habitat he is included in. when the 'inhabitant' discharges something 'out there', he transforms himself and the [finite and unbounded] habitat he is included in. his assertive inside-outward-pushing actions reflect back as outside-inward pushing actions. the inside-outward expanding spheres of soap bubbles reflect back as outside-inward pushing actions, transforming the spheres into hexagonal cells.

science, as in the mainstream practice of science, has avoided this complexity [the complexity of relational space as captured in Mach's principle] and assumed that space is infinite [Euclidian] and never fills up and therefore never has this behaviour where our inside-outward asserting actions are simultaneously reflecting back on us as outside-inward shaping influences. "The dynamics of the inhabitants are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat at the same time as the dynamics of the habitat are conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants." [Mach's principle]

each transaction in the continued appropriation of land and resources by the wealthy and powerful, in the euclidian science model,is identical with the last transaction. but in a finite and unbounded relational space, such as the space on the surface of the sphere, each transaction is NOT THE SAME; i.e. each transaction tightens the squeeze put on the less wealthy and less powerful.

the law has rules for transactions [behaviours] and this assumes that all transactions are transactions in themselves, as they would be in absolute/infinite euclidian space where there is no 'back-reflection' or as einstein called it 'reciprocal disposition', but in the real physical world of our experience, the back reflection is always present, though unaccounted for in our culture. reciprocal complement to the inhabitant dynamic [the rock rolling down the mountain] is the opening of a hole in the mountain. in physical reality this dynamic is 'transformation' of spatial relations. when the rock moves, the rock is no longer the same rock and the habitat it is moving is no longer the same habitat. "one can't step into the same river twice" [heraclitus]. all dynamics are transformation of relational space. science has traditionally accounted only for 'what things-in-themselves do'. this hasn't changed because it is institutionalized in sovereigntist governance, in Western justice and in the globally dominant systems of business/economy.

some of us are putting the squeeze on others of us through the mediating medium of space; i.e. by the back-reflecting pressures that originate from our [some of us] assertive dynamics and bounce back to put the squeeze on others of us, as in land acquisition [property ownership] transactions. as these transactions continue, each one looking like any other in the view of the legal/justice system, the screws are being tightened and those with less are finding themselves in a narrowing gap between a rock and a hard place. the transactions and experiments are only replicable if one sees dynamics as 'what things-in-themselves do' [as science continues to do] ignores the back-reflecting influence that is simultaneous and coincident with the 'what things-in-themselves do'.

For fuck's sake emile, you write too fucking much. I don't even read your posts even more, I just skim over..... and not because I'm ADD but because all you say is boring, irrelevant shit.

emile, you turn me on when you talk about science routinely reducing dynamics to such interactions.

what would it take for an anon like you to go out with a guy like me?

Science, wine and a bath.


WTF no omne better fuckinm smnash thge fuckjinm windscrteenm ofg tyhe fuckinbn 80s v8 chevuy mny uncxle give mew or il;l fuckin box yteh fuckin headf in i dsont carte who thje are anarcjhists nihilist fuckinm platyformistas communmistys o fucklinb copsd no fuckinm distimncshimns wjhen it comes to my fuckinm propertyu iz woiked for,..,8ball;

people were disappointed you didn't show up to the livestream chat.

:( i know i was.

i canm ber vereuy fuckjin complexc sumtimes mayber nonme wouldf f ucvkinm undrstoodf mer violwencer cos theyrre werak fuckinm libersals.,.,8ball

Chris hedges: I am against violence.

I think that violence doesn't have to be physical, it can be verbal.

It's up to the "victim" [recipient] to define violence.

Me: Ok Chris. Your verbal assault on us anarchists who are down with or participate in the black block was violence. Not only that, but it was as venomous and jingoistic as the attacks made by any number of the fascists you so often rail against.

Chris came off as an aloof, slightly deranged old man, out-of-touch and disconnected. Dated. Lost in his own self-important history. Surprised that anyone would actually call him out for all the dishonest shit he's written.

Crime think dude came off as reasonable and conciliatory. Take that however you like.




Was it recorded? Can't find the video anywhere. I know, I know it's only been an hour but I'm dying of impatience.

word, respond if you find out. I'm not nearly as enthusiastic as you sound, but I do want to casually check it out for entertainment value and I missed the livestream.

This site was the apparently official livestream, so I wouldn't be surprised if it pops up here.

Some or all the video has been posted here: and on the Mobile Broadcast News website.

In a room of non-anarchists everyone decided that B. was an idiot and Chris Hedges was right.
Debate backfire?

what, seriously? even when chris hedges main argument was self references to his past exploits? the fuck is wrong with people?

I'm also surprised to hear this, I thought B Traven did fine, maybe would have been nice to hear him say he's not representing anarchists in general more, but I missed bits here and there. Since he doesn't represent me or any of us I can't really get too upset nitpicking how he did in that certain way, not to say its not worth anarchists commenting, thinking and talking about, or that that's what we're doing if we do.
I'm obviously coming at this from the A Team but I don't think Hedges arguments will come off that great to many of the disillusioned occupy people who aren't anarchists, but are thinking about these issues, that I know. His comments about anonymity being an invitation or present (I forget the phrase) to the surveillance state, violence (including the anarchist bugaboo) as hypermasculine, being confronted about calling the Black Panthers and AIM parasites, and praising Mary Daly and Andrea Dworkin's gender analysis are just a few things that stood out to me as flawed/weak points he made.
I'd be interested in hearing your impressions of why the people you watched it with thought that, hell ask them to post their thoughts here or somewhere.
Or just spiderhose them, your call.

"In a room of non-anarchists everyone decided that B. was an idiot and Chris Hedges was right."

What gave you that impression? It seems like more than a few people saw that, AT LEAST from a formal standpoint, Chris got owned.

What gave me that impression was the people saying things like:
"This crimethinc guy won't even answer the questions."
"He just looks like an idiot."
"It does seem hyper-masculine and he won't even address that, he just says 'you're gendering it.'"
"It seems like he just has things he wants to talk about and doesn't really care about what gets asked."

I will talk to people some more and see if one of them will write up something more specific, or maybe I will review the video once it is up and point out the places they got lost.

I don't personally think B. did badly but the responses I heard just seemed to underline the question as to what the point of the whole thing was. Is it to build movements? Is it like a little flag, a signal to show there are others besides Hedges?

Man, Hedges for one totally backed off his bullshit, backpedaling from hating THE BLOC to just begging for it not to interrupt his protests. If his supporters watching that didn't at least get a little of the anti-BB taken out of their sails, I dunno what's wrong with them.

You wouldn't happen to have viewed this in an ISO group or something, would you?

Who were these people?
"This crimethinc guy won't even answer the questions."
Hedges was the one ducking questions. Like seriously

"It does seem hyper-masculine and he won't even address that, he just says 'you're gendering it.'"
This is one of the responses where b. owned Chris. Chris went totally off topic in his response. It is true that that is the first thing that b. said but then said many other things.

"It seems like he just has things he wants to talk about and doesn't really care about what gets asked."

This was Chris not B. Who were these mysterious people? This is one whack analysis of how it went.

My conclusion is that these people have the panelists confused...

Hope someone occu-'pied' Hedges.

That livestream chat was fun. It was like what I imagine hanging out with anarchists would be like if they actually lived in my town.

thanks for the stroll

B. Traven was really well-prepared and thorough. Hedges was pathetic
and has his ass kicked in no uncertain terms, the liberal scumbag. Bravo, BT!

Is the black bloc's violence against starbucks' windows justified, duh. is it going to free ppl? probably not. would it be more effective if black blockers joined occupy and defended noobs from getting arrested, spreading anarchist literature, and helping noobs form affinity groups and refine their politics, IMO, YES.

um. where have these things not happened? where have people, in bloc or not but who do bloc up, not helped people who were getting arrested? where have they not spread @ lit? what part of the US are we talking about?

i didn't say that it doesn't happen. i'm saying that's the PR anarchists want, that is the PR that is going to win the public to our side, it is the PR that is going to get people to search wikipedia for anarchism and youtube for anarchists. BOTH Brian and Hedges, IMO, are right -- B & BB are justified in reacting violently to corps and state, but hedges is right because violence is damages the movement because 97% of the population see the world through lenses of propaganda and they don't have the means to process BB in a way that is beneficial to creating change.

this doesnt mean "hedges is right" - it means anarchists need to continue improving how we communicate with society at large, and that pundits like Hedges sabotage this process (intentionally, knowingly) by presenting us as monsters. We should expect this of course, but its absurd to say that Hedges is right becuase he makes a self-fulfilling prophecy that he and his class of journalists play a key role in helping to fulfill.

Your statement, in the end, is just very very imprecise. The violence doesnt damage the movement - the state repression, which rides on the back of left and liberal narratives of legitimacy and nonviolence, is what damages the movement. The same violence occurs in other contexts and has a totally different or galvanizing affect. The problem isnt people standing up for themselves - the problem is other people not recognizing their own struggle alongside them, and joining in.

Does this reality call for a strategic reflection that shapes our actions? Of course - there s a reason anarchists in the US are generally less aggressive or offensive than those in other countries and other contexts, even when we d like to be. But this understanding doesn t place "violence" as the problem, rather the level of discourse, tactical inexperience, lack of confidence, and lack of a sense of "entitlement" to rebel on the part of large swaths of differently exploited populations in the US. The way through this impasse is not to retreat into forms of protest that we KNOW from decades of experience DO NOT get us where we want to go. The way through is to continue trying to intervene and engage in struggles in ways that expand their substantive critique, in terms of content, as well as expand their ability to destroy the State and Capitalism. We open up spaces for rebellion, we give the social gift of new tactics and new kinds of confrontation, we take the first steps whenever possible. We apply an anarchist analysis to problems that we all face, and we act in ways that encourage deeper ruptiures with the status quo.

(laughs) Occupy can go fuck itself. Or in this case, it's dead body.

i think chris hedges won. hands down.

I would postulate that the framework and presentation of the entire debate was utterly retrograde to a coherent discourse. Too many issues left not having gotten down to brass tacks over. Particularly Hedges avoiding questions & whatnot.

He totally did! He was in Bosnia and El Salvador and shit. How can you argue with that!?!

Favourite part by far was when Traven started reading him back the quote from his own piece on AIM and the Panthers. PWNED!!!

Who even cares about Chris Hedges at this point? I thought he was already thoroughly discredited after the Cancer piece. Why even acknowledge his worthless existence or provide a forum to spew his bullshit?

Yeah doood I agree hes totally not in our anarchis cool club so why like even talk about him? Or his ideas or whatever. Discussion is for like people who aren't in the cool club and I want you all to know I'M NOT ONE OF THEM!!!!!!

OMG! Two giants of conceited self promotion, no less than masters of overrated and irrelevant rhetoric debating face to face! No-Holds-Barred Winner take all! what world does an individual who refuses to use their own name or get paid for the work, generally trading that credit for a likely long fbi file, come off as conceited and self promoting? This guy could easily be writing hack articles for the huffington post or NYT like hedges; instead he lives on like no money engaging as an everyday guy with anarchist stuff in his town. He s not perfect - neither are you or I - but he s doing his best, and gets little other than some scene cred and a risk of repression for it, not to mention a bunch of uninformed haters and typical strawman attacks.

thanks, but y'all don't need to defend me--I'm in it for the uninformed haters and typical strawman attacks. They make any fbi file worthwhile.

Hedges said moms with strollers are terrifying and I agree


bugaboo |ˈbəgəˌbo͞o|nounan object of fear or alarm; a bugbear.ORIGIN mid 18th cent.: probably of Celticorigin and related to Welsh bwci bo ‘bogey, the Devil,’ bwci ‘hobgoblin’ and Cornishbucca .

hedge |hej|
verb [ with obj. ]1 surround or bound• (hedge something in) enclose.2 limit or qualify (something) by conditions or exceptions: experts usually hedge their predictions, just in case.• [ no obj. ] avoid making a definite decision, statement, or commitment: she hedged around the one question she wanted to ask.3 protect (one's investment or an investor) against loss by making balancing or compensating contracts or transactions: the company hedged its investment position on the futures market.PHRASEShedge one's bets avoid committing oneselfwhen faced with a difficult choice.

Kinda disappointed crimethinc guy didn't argue in favor of violence, but only against using de-legitimizing language. There are quite a number of obvious and convincing arguments anarchists have always used in favor of violence: that one has a right to self-defense, that it's better to overthrow the system with violence than let its far greater violence continue, it's a duty to prevent suffering by meeting force with force, the oppressors will never surrender voluntarily without a show of force, that the system rests on material force (police, army) that will inevitably have to be dealt with etc.

*social force, you mean, as opposed to military or physical force necessarily.

I'm glad B denounced clandestine action and guerilla struggle.

I also think hedges won because B didn't bring up the need for a militant specter in order for more moderate reformists to get a seat at the table, which is the reason why even those who don't engage in militancy or have anarchist desires should support it. It's been true in every social movement hedges listed off and tried to whitewash. Hedges won because B didn't present good enough arguments not cuz he's right.

"a riot is the language of the unheard."

UHHHHH. We aren't fighting to get liberals a seat at the table. B was right not use that bullshit tired ass line. We aren't extreme liberals or extreme leftists. We are anarchists. B won. Also he didn't denounce clandestine action. Crimethinc. supports sabotage elf and alf. Where do you get that from?

Hear hear! I was scared he would use that line, and was THRILLED that he was principled enough not to - that would have been a sacrifice of our own intentions and goals for the short term aim of finding sympathy with those whome we have little to no actual affinity with (or for!).

Anarchists/= radical liberals, or for that matter, liberals' pawns.

first, he didnt denounce clandestine aciton. at all. he denounced military style conflict, specifically armed guerilla activity. and denounced is really the wrong word, he said that wasnt what he was pushing for. pay attention.

second, Hedges fucking avoided the questions, avoided the impact and actual words of his own writings, for an hour and a half, preferring to reminisce about war zones and jumble historical analogies that proved the opposite of his position.

B kept to his main aim for the debate, consistently and directly answering every question, and returning to the main point, which is that the Nonviolence Only stance is divisive, exclusive, and weak sauce, that hedges writings played into pigs hands, and that it was BS. Above all, even just by hsowing up and be consistently clear, approachable feeling, and direct, he undermined Hedge's entire narrative: that we re monsters etc.

The one simple, classical debate team way of analyzing who "won," as silly as it is, is just to look at the positions taken. Hedges, by the end of the debate, backed down on his stance on masking, EXPLICITLY supported a diversity of tactics, which he had denounced in cancer of occupy.

HE LOST, with the majority of the audience LAUGHING AT HIM.

what debate were you watching?

If Hedges lost and we won, where's my winner's trophy?


Basically a non-debate. i agree with the dick wagging comment. It was far too structured and academic and controlled, and no one really answered anything... Also B didn't need to pretend like was so non-academic; that seemed pretty phony.

There was so much fear of outbursts that they warned against making any like 5 times, before anyone even started making outbursts.

One thing I noticed was that in responding to his calling AIM and the BPP "parasites," hedges hilariously failed to say "well i'm a human being and i write a lot of stuff, and I don't think people should expect 100% non-contradiction and purity from anyone's writing as if they were impeccable idols."

My favorite part was when someone said something about "is the black bloc a hypermasculine phenomenon" a woman yelled "YES," and gestured as a perfect example toward this one group of loudmouths in the back who kept making an aggressive scene during the whole thing, in particular on dude (who we can just refer to as Mr. Manarchist) yelling things like "YOU'RE A FUCKING LIAR" and fake-laughing and clapping as loud as possible to drown out just about anything Hedges was saying the second he started talking.

All in all of course it was fine, and not that big of a disruption as I've seen at talks like this or anything, but it was indeed a "hypermasculine" display.

I also liked how when some guy in the front said "shut up and quit being an asshole" to Mr. Manarchist he blubbered "why doesn't someone tell me to then" or some shit, and the dude in front said "i just did." LOL fail.

Overall I was pretty unimpressed. Pretty boring.

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